She sat up in bed, and Zafrek brought a plate over to her. Instead of eggs and bacon, there were three round keys. She looked up at Zafrek with a frown.
"You will need these," he said, his kind brown eyes turning red. "Find the keys. Find the rider. Heal the dragon. This is what you must do!" He disappeared in a puff of thick black smoke, and through the haze she saw glowing blue eyes...
Dally sat up with a start. The dream had been so real to her, that she looked around her chamber for several minutes until she realized it was just a dream. She sighed. She hadn't thought about Zafrek since she'd started building her own base. He had been so kind, then suddenly became very angry and took it out on her. She refused to be treated that way, and was very hurt by his change in attitude towards her. When Ash sent for her, she left without saying goodbye; she'd just left a note saying, "I will miss you".
The dream meant she had to go back.
Dally sighed, got up and began to pack. The Sacred Ridge was an entire days' journey by dragon, and she needed to leave as soon as possible if she wanted to reach Zafrek's cabin by dark. She put on her cloak, threw her bag over her shoulder and headed to the meeting hall. She pulled Timur and Druid Kreiger aside and told them about her dream.
"It was just a dream," Timur said sourly.
The Druid shook his head. "No, it was not. It was a sign...or a message...doesn't matter what. My point is she needs to go."
Timur shrugged. "I'm not much for this mystical mumbo jumbo. But, if you feel that strongly about it, go. Take Voron with you so you can reach out if you need help. What dragon do you want to take?"
Dally thought for a moment. "My gut reaction is to say Draco, but he's not strong enough. I'll take Noctua. I'm going to go see Draco though before I go."
The men nodded, and Timur walked to the Dragons Den with her. He went to get Noc ready for travel, and she went to see her baby. Draco was her first dragon, he traveled with her and protected her for ten years. He was her best friend. She took him out just to fly every day she was on the base. Draco heard her footsteps and poked his nose out of his stall. Dally laughed and kissed his snout.
"There's my good boy," she said as she opened the stall door. He went to the back wall and lay down, back against the wall, so she could lay against his chest.
"I'm going back to the Sacred Ridge," she said.
"I know, I know, but I had a dream. Or a vision, or whatever you want to call it. Zaf said I need keys to find a rider and heal a dragon."
"I don't know what it means either, but I have to go. Will you keep the base and the others safe while I'm gone?"
Draco gently rubbed his massive cheek against her. Yes.
Dally got up and kissed his snout again. "I'll be back soon. I love you." She walked quickly out of the stall and out of the den to avoid the tears that were welling in her eyes. Timur helped her up onto Noctua's back, handed her three bags of supplies and her bag, and waved as they took off toward the Sacred Ridge. They arrived at Zafrek's cabin just as the sun set.
It was deserted.
Dally could tell by the growth of the weeds and the deterioration of the house and stable that it had been deserted for years. Probably, since right after she left. She sighed, and set about clearing the barn to make room for Noctua. The barn could hold three dragons, and had been shut tight enough that not much needed to be done inside. Once Noc was settled, she headed over to the house. Off in the distance she saw a golden dragon flying against the light of the rising moon. It passed closer, and she saw it had blue eyes. Her eyes widened, then closed from the force of someone hitting her from behind.