~That's singing?~ The circle of dragons grew larger, their roars increasing. If I were actually present, I'd be overwhelmed by the sound, my eardrums possibly damaged.
~Indeed.~ Part of Rhaelgyr ached to join in, and I was amazed by the strength of his reaction. I was amazed by how close the dragon's spirit had come to mine. I suddenly shared his urge to sin, despite how horrid I found the "song".
Of course, I wasn't a dragon, so I wouldn't see the beauty in the same things he did.
~We love to sing,~ he informed me. ~We take any prompting to sing. Sunsets are a loud and magnificent time.~
~So how does the singing form the khaldera?~ Lava began to cool, becoming obsidian, and a tower rose from the molten sea. It shone, reflecting the tortured glow of its birthplace.
~A focus for our magic. We could do it silently, but it wouldn't be as fun.~ He chuckled, squeezing me.
The song changed, notes rising and falling. Voices rose to higher registers, some roars dropping to subsonic base tones. Magma responded, warping and twisting, spreading and blooming.
~Oh,~ I whispered, awed by the formation rising above me. Balconies and windows and doors all came to existence under the dragon song. Up and up the tower rose, an obsidian castle scaled to dragon proportions. ~Are all dragon homes like this?~
~To some degree. Some clans prefer natural cave systems. A few like open peaks. Most make their own castles. Khalderas are beautiful things, unique to each clan. They're unique to individual families even amongst the same clan.~
We continued to watch as their khaldera grew. The pool of magma diminished as the tower grew. The sun rose, and only at its zenith did the dragons stop singing.
Surely they were exhausted from all their efforts. Yet they launched their massive bodied into the air, winging to the various landings along the tower. Rhaelgyr and I followed his mother to the very top. A tiny dragon followed her, a third her size, wings working rapidly to keep up with her.
~Is that you?~
~Yes.~ Embarrassment colored his presence.
~You're so cute.~ He was slender compared to his elders, with narrow spines and smoother skin. He already had a dignity to his presence; did that come from slavery, or was it natural to all dragons?
~Shush.~ Rhaelgyr was definitely embarrassed. I imagined his cheeks coloring, and I felt good. It was charming that he'd blush over being called cute.
~Didn't you say there wsa problems with the natives?~ Then we didn't have to linger on his precious adolescent self. Though, I might be the only person outside their race to think he was adorable.
~That didn't happen right away. A khaldera rising is an intimidating event.~
I chuckled. ~So they had to work up the guts to attack you?~
The memory sped up, days passing swiftly. Dragons came and went, hunting and soaring. ~Something like that.~
There was movement at the edge of the escarpment, accompanied by extreme malice.