Cathan was a small child, he lived in the outskirts of a town called Loairn. Loairn was a farming town not the richest but not poor either. They had black smiths, butchers and boat makers. Cathan father was a farmer, ploughing and planting was how he spent his days. Cathan would play in the square with the other children, running around pretending to be the great knights of dragons’ valley. Cathan would tell tales to the other children about quests he went with the Knights, fighting dragons and monsters. This was always met with aggression. The boys would declare him a liar. They would chase him and bully him often sending him home crying.
One day while playing hide and seek, Cathan hid on the back of a cart, pulling a cover over his head. The cart began to move, but Cathan just froze in fear, keeping the cover over his head. The cart went faster, the cover blew off Cathan yelled for the cart to stop but the driver never heard him. Soon the cart came to its destination the small village of Pak. The driver turned round and saw the young shape of Cathan standing on the back of his cart. Before he could speak Cathan jumped off and ran as fast as his little legs could carry him.
He ran in to the woods, perched on a tree root Cathan stopped for a breath.
“You don’t want to come in here boy”
“Who said that?” Cathan looked round
“Don’t be afraid boy I won’t hurt you, I have already eaten”
“My name is Cathan not boy”
“Well nice to meet you Cathan my name is Sorth”
“Eh… nice to meet you …too”
“Do you know where you are little Cathan?”
“No I am lost”
“You are in the Ervous Forest” Cathan began to panic his heart racing thinking of stories his granddad used to tell him about wolf like people, griffons, bears and dragons.
“I need to get out of here”
“Don’t panic, the Ervous people can hear your heart beat it is like a drum”
“No little Cathan I only come for a … let’s say visit.” Sorth reaches out and places a comforting hand on his shoulder. “Let’s get you home before something has you for a snack” Pulling Cathan through the trees the pair return to the edge of the village where Cathan had fled. Without leaving the cover of the trees Sorth pushes Cathan forward “There you go home safely…”
“This is not my home” Cathan explains how he got there in the first place
“Why didn’t you tell me?”
“You never asked”
“OK why don’t you go find the driver ask him to take you home, there is a good chance he is going back in the morning” Cathan ventures into the village and quickly the driver appears and finds him. The driver agrees to take him home.
As they take the short journey back to Loairn, a shape casts a shadow above them. The driver is startled and roars at his horses to go faster trying to escape the ominous shape. The horses take a turn of pace and run like the wind. Cathan looks up and sees his first dragon flying gracefully over his head. But unlike the driver Cathan finds comfort in dark shadow following them back to Loairn then changing direction and going the other way, when they arrive at last.