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Hi, I'm Bog. This is a random idea I had when I was in the car on my way to a little kid's birthday party. Don't judge! MudWings will do anything for free food, and this place also had a pool with really warm water!

Thanks to Incinorator for making the page because my computer is stupid. It's dedicated to Tsunami. Though she will now write with us any longer (or at least for a really long time), she is in our hearts, or at least mine, and I really wish she could read this book.

I would also like to make it known that, while I am the first author to put this idea into action, I am not the first person to have the idea, so if anyone else wants to do something like this, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have the right to stop you even if I wanted to. 8{)

If you see any mistakes in spelling or grammar, please correct! And comment to tell me what you think!

Summary

As King Gill of the SeaWings went to battle while his wife guarded the royal hatchery, he was captured by the SkyWings and forced into battle. But he brought one thing into the arena with him. Words. And that's all he needed. At each battle, he convinced the opposition to lay on the sands and refuse to fight. But it didn't sit right in Queen Scarlet's stomach, and he was severely punished in the worst way a dragon of the sea can be punished. He was parched. And without water for so many months, he lost his mind. He was bloodthirsty and unmerciful, and his final challenger had no choice but to kill him. That is what we know, but what really happened? What did King Gill think in his last year and a half of life? When did he snap? What did he say to those dragons in the arena? For moon's sake, what was he like before insanity? These questions must be answered...

Prologue

King Gill was very unhappy. That did not happen very often. When it did, it was usually because someone had died or was dying. And a lot of dragons had died all around him in the last two days alone.

He dodged a set of claws, trying hard not to get mauled. This SkyWing was a skilled fighter if Gill could say anything good about her.

He stepped back. "I would very much like if neither of us died in this battle. Do you think that could be arranged?"

She growled, throwing a strike that Gill almost couldn't get away from. "I'm gonna arrange your snout in the dirt!"

Alright, she's lost. He jumped off the side of the mountain and came back up, glaring at the landscape. The burning, bloody, landsape of the Sky Kingdom. There was no need for this. If Shark hadn't insisted on the attack, Gill wouldn't have to be here, ordering the deaths of a hundred dragons and then having to watch as the same dragons eradicated thousands of his. It was unthinkable that the king should have to watch his own dragons die so helplessly!

The dragon came back and vicously ripped into his tail. He yelped from the pain, and immediately launched into a spinning dive-bomb. She let go of his tail and hovered dizzily while Gill pulled up. He landed in a cave and scoped out the battle-field, nursing his tail. Sadly most of the dead dragons were green or blue, but even sadder was how much the red and orange dragons seemed to be enjoying it.

Why am I still here? If I was in my right mind, I would have called a full retreat yesterday! I should be at home, seeing my dragonets and Coral and my subjects.

He shook his head. Too late to dwell on the past. Perhaps he could call a temporary truce with the SkyWing general to discuss the matter. But who would listen to him? These SkyWings in particular were malicious, even for SkyWings, he couldn't just give them a speech and expect them to put down their weapons. That was rediculous! It was long over time to retreat. 

Gill set his jaw. He decided right then and there that he would fight until he was the last SeaWing standing on four talons, and then he would keep fighting. There was nothing else to do.

He jumped from the cave and launched himself at the nearest, and unfortunately the largest group of SkyWings he could see, roaring at the top of his lungs. He wanted to make sure that if he was to die here, he would be known as brave if nothing else.

As he reached the wing, two red dragons noticed him and broke off to intercept. They looked smug and almost bored at the same time, like there were a million other things they could be doing that would be more exciting than this slaughter. He attacked the closest one with a heavy blow to the stomach with his tail. The dragon plummetted like a stone, crashing into the side of a cliff with a sickening crack!

The other SkyWing woke up and lunged at Gill with his talons outstretched. Gill twisted around and bit the dragon's wing, tasting blood and hearing a scream. It was terrible. There should be another way to do this. A way that didn't demand this blood in his mouth and this screaming in his ears. He let go, and the red dragon spiraled akwardly to the edge of a cliff, pouring blood onto the rocks as he landed. Gill looked down at his tail, and realized that there was thin trail of red below where he had been flying. He was starting to feel dizzy. How much blood could he have possibly lost from his tail in the few minutes since he had been bitten? Surely not too much?

Gill turned to fly away from the wing, but another one was in front of him, and the first one was coming in at SkyWing speed.

Pain suddenly shockwaved through his head and neck. He had been hit from behind. Surely the SkyWings would let him fall. None of his soldiers had been spared. At least, not the ones who had been blinded enough by loyalty to stay and fight with him. 

Surely the King of the SeaWings was going to plummet to the ground and splatter on impact.

But Gill was still flapping his wings. That was all he was aware of, but he was still flapping his wings. He didn't even have the sense left to wonder what they had hit him with. Then he was hit again. And now he was vaguely sure that he was falling.

But someone caught him just before he lost conciousness.

Chapter 1: Spectating

Gill woke up with his head still hurting and his tail no longer bleeding. For what felt like several hours, he couldn't even bring himself to open his eyes. When he did, it was to find the scource of some wingbeats.

A SkyWing was flying around close to his... Where in the world was he? He got up and looked around. He was at the top of a tall rock spire above a giant sand-filled stone bowl. There were about a hundred spires like his around the outside of the bowl, each with a dragon at the top. Each dragon, including Gill, was conected to the dragons next to them and the center of a web by thin metal wires. SeaWings, SandWings, IceWings, and a few SkyWings. 

The Sky Kingdom. The Sky Palace.

Then the bowl must be the arena.

The SkyWing arived. "Hi! I'm Peril! What's your name?"

He looked at her. She had strange copper-colored scales and golden veins in her wings and electric blue eyes. She was rather small and her horns weren't full-grown. 

She looked about five. Five.

"Hellooo? I asked you a question!"

Gill realized he was supposed to answer. "Sorry. I'm Gill."

"Cool name. What are you in here for?" Peril did a slow backwards loop in the air. It looked like she had smoke rising from her scales, but that was rediculous.

He sighed, details coming back to him in a flash. "Prisoner of war. Why wasn't I brought to the regular prison?"

She looked like she was trying not to laugh at him. "This is the new regular prison. It was made official about a month ago." She swooped over him, and he ducked. As she came near, he felt an intense heat wash over his scales.

She continued before he could say anything. "You'll probably die in little while, so I'll give you a fair warning. I'm the queen's champion. If you win enough battles, you get to fight me, and if you win that, you go free. But you probably don't want to fight me, so I suggest you die before it comes to that."

Gill stared at Peril, who flew off without another word. He yelled after her, "Well, that was illuminating! THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR HELP!"

After a few hours, Gill realized two things. One, he found out that the light of the sunset really brought out the green in his scales and made them shine very brightly. Two, he realized that even if he could get out of the wires, his wings were clipped. True, as a SeaWing, and even as a king, he didn't really use his wings very much, but they still would have been helpful.

A commotion started in the arena. He looked down.

A rather small, red SkyWing walked out on a balcony overlooking the arena. The arena stands were already filled with dragons. SkyWings, MudWings, and SandWings. 

It didn't take long for Gill to recognize the dragon on the balcony. Queen Scarlet clapped her wings, silencing the crowd immediately. 

She bellowed across the stands, "Citizens and guests of the Sky Kingdom, tonight we welcome Burn, the future Queen of the SandWings to our arena! I'm sure she's around here somewhere! I have put together a series of games and competitions to entertain them, but admittidly most of them are only variations of the usual gladitorial fights, and I'm obviously not ever going to call them! So, I have arranged this battle at sunset for now, and the real festivities can begin tommorrow! Vermilion! Anounce the fighters!"

A red dragon that must have been Vermilion walked out of a tunnel in the stone and beamed enthusiastically at the crowd in the stands. "In the sky, we have an ice dragon! But an unusual one! Not only did this dragon willingly come into the heart of the Sky Palace and offer himself to the arena, but no dragon who was fought him so far seems to be able to lay a claw on him! With four wins, I present to you... Mammoth of the IceWings!"

A lot of dragons cheered as a blindingly white IceWing was dropped on the sands. He remained calm, getting up peacefully and walking around the arena, studying the dragons in the crowd and not making any signs that he had noticed Vermilion. It was almost creepy. If Gill was down there with him, he would have lost his mind just waiting for the attack. But there was something off about this dragon that Gill couldn't quite put his talon on. What was it?

The red dragon continued as the clapping and cheering died down. "And in the tunnel, we have our challenger. I've pretty much ran out of ways to anounce her at this point... Peril, the queen's champion!"

Peril walked out of the tunnel that Vermilion had come from. She smiled and waved at the crowd, but didn't get as much applause as Mammoth had. It was almost as if they knew she was going to win somehow. But hang on, that's just stupid. She's only five, maybe five and a half.

Vermilion hovered a few feet above the sand. "Claws up, teeth ready, FIGHT!" And with that, he was gone in a blurred line that Gill couldn't follow with his eyes.

Peril crouched low and crawled slowly forward, but Mammoth didn't seem to care. It was like his mind wasn't even on the fight. Gill rather thought that even if she was only a dragonet, it would still be smart to at least aknowledge that he might have the potential to be torn to shreds in a few moments.

She kept moving closer. The crowd grew silent. Mammoth's tail seemed to twitch slightly, as if he had noticed the change in the mood of the crowd. He turned just as Peril jumped at him, immediately jumping over her and running to the other side of the arena.

The battle had begun.

The two dragons circled the arena, eyes locked. Gill kept trying to see what was wrong with Mammoth's face, but he couldn't figure it out. Maybe it had something to do with him not taking note of his surroundings. But Gill was too far away to know for sure what it was.

Peril dashed forward. Mammoth tensed to jump over her, but then went left instead as Peril jumped up to catch him, and even then he kept juking wildly, as if he wanted to be absolutly certain that Peril couldn't get to him. One thought kept coming back to Gill's mind as he watched.

She. Is. Five! Why not just kill her?

Not that Gill wanted her dead. He was against killing in every way, and only killed on the battle-feild, when he absolutely had to. But it seemed silly to him that any dragon should be afraid of another one so small and young.

He turned his attention back to the sands. The two dragons were quite literally running around in circles as Peril tried to catch Mammoth, and Mammoth tried to get away from Peril. Until finally, Mammoth did what Gill had been expecting him to do for the entire fight. He turned around, and blasted her straight in the face with his freezing-death breath.

Many dragons, including Gill, gasped. Most sounded disbelieving, but Gill gasped mostly because he hadn't thought that Peril would actually survive.

So, also disbelieving.

But then the fog from Mammoth's breath cleared, and Peril walked out of it shivering. But she seemed back to her full warmth in a matter of seconds. Mammoth didn't even move as she walked calmly forward. Peril survived an IceWing's breath. It was either the most amazing, or the most insanely terrifying thing that Gill had ever seen in all of his years as the King of the SeaWings.

She reached Mammoth, who was no longer shocked by his face, but didn't quite seem like he was going to move either.

Peril spoke. "Do you yeild?"

He only tilted his head, patting his ear with one talon as if to signal something to her.

Or rather, where his ear should have been. That was why he looked so weird, though it was also strange that Gill hadn't been able to figure it out yet. The places where his ears should have been were blackened, garbled, and... Well, they didn't have ears on them. It was like they were burned off.

Peril reached forward with her talons and dug them into Mammoth's side, causing it to burn and smoke and smell foul even from the top of the Sky Kingdom. He didn't scream, or collapse, or do anything he probably would've done if he was normal. This dragon was way too calm and collected to be a dragon. It didn't make sense that anyone could act like that. 

He grunted in pain, and he died. Those were the only things that made Gill certain he had felt something.

Gill himself could only stare at Peril as she went back into her tunnel, followed by a half-hearted applause from the stands.

As several guards went out onto the sands to clean up Mammoth's body. Queen Scarlet dismissed the crowd and Vermillion, and everybody left. As the last few rays of the sun left the Sky Kingdom, Gill remembered the heat that had passed over him when Peril was flying around his rock spire. She must have had fire her scales and claws or something. And Gill would be willing to bet that the color of her scales and eyes had a lot to do with it.

But his head still hurt, and he was tired. He would have to wait until the morning to think about it.

Chapter 2: On the Sands

Gill woke up with a pounding in his head chasing more painful thoughts of his wife at home, laying next to the female egg as if there was nothing else that held priority to her. It made him wonder if she had noticed that he hadn't returned yet. And when she did, how would she react? A rescue mission? Or would she simply accept that he was already dead? 

He sat up. The sun had been up for several hours at this point, and was already halfway to the top of the sky. His shadow below him seemed to be tinted pea green, like stained glass.

Wing beats. He turned around. A SkyWing guard was flying toward him with a squirming pig. He looked thin and unhappy, and Gill wondered what he had eaten that morning.

The guard put down the pig and flew off again before he could even say hello. SkyWings are so rude these days, Gill thought, gobbling up the terrified pig. Wait, could it have been terrified if it was dead? Gill didn't know. That was about when it hit him just how much time he had spent wondering since he woke up a few minutes ago. He wondered if there was some way to get answers here.

More wing beats. Gill turned back toward the arena to see Peril flying up to him. He backed up to the other side, but she didn't land. She stayed in the air, beaming.

"So, whatcha doin'?" Gill didn't answer. It seemed like a pretty obvious question to him. "Do you think you can hold out long enough to get into the arena with me?"

He snorted. "A better question would be, 'Shouldn't I just throw myself off the prison spire right now?'"

She smiled wider, as if she thought he was kidding. "The queen says you're going next. I'm not allowed to tell you anything else."

Gill scratched his gills. "Can you at least tell me when I'll be getting some water?" he asked, walking forward a little bit.

A low scratching sounded behind him. He turned to see a large cauldron of water sitting on the rock. A blur of red was flying away behind it. He shoved his snout into the cauldron without a second thought as Peril kept talking.

"SeaWings get an extra large cauldron of water, and they get it more often than the other prisoners because they need it more." Something distracted her below. "I think the fight is starting! You better get ready!" And she flew off with Gill's snout still in the water cauldron.

He drained the entire contents of the cauldron and started to pay attention to the filling arena. This time, there was a large SandWing in the queen's balcony, her head seemingly scraping against the ceiling of it. If Gill had to guess, he would say it was Burn.

Burn was standing next to a small throne that was set up next to the one that Queen Scarlet was now sitting on. She was bluntly ignoring it. She was also talking to one of her SandWing guards as if she would rather not be here.

Queen scarlet clapped her wings to silence the crowd. "Citizens of the Sky Kingdom and honored guests, today we welcome the pressence of the future SandWing Queen with a two on two match! Vermilion will now anounce today's weather prediction and then the combatants!"

Vermilion flew out and landed on the sands. He looked over a scroll in his talons and then bellowed, "They gave me this scroll to read the weather off of, but I don't know how to read these fancy charts, so I'm just going to do this!" He threw the scroll into the air and blasted it with his fire breath. The crowd cheered. "Now for the combatants! Both teams will consist of an unlikely alliance! If a member of one team decides to kill his partner, a coin will be flipped! That dragon will either be executed on the spot, or tied in a bag of angry weasels and shipped to the Mud Kingdom by river, where they will probably be executed if they don't drown on the way!"

"On one team, we have a typical IceWing. She was brought to us by Queen Burn herself, a prisoner of war. She was starved, beaten, and left in a wooden box in the desert for many weeks and still refuses to give any information on the IceWings. Presenting... Plain of the IceWings!"

A large IceWing was carried to the sands by several SkyWing guards. Vermilion went on. "And her partner, who hardly needs an introduction. This dragon has remained in our arena for a few months, simply because he keeps being forgotten about. With six wins, Schist of the SkyWings!"

An equally large SkyWing was lowered. "On the opposing team, a curious case. An abnormal SandWing. This dragon is twice as deadly as any other, but with a measured combination of blunt strength and several really, really big rocks, he was eventually overpowered. I give you... Jumpingcactus of the SandWings, with three wins!"

Another dragon, this time a SandWing who appeared to have two tails, was lowered.

Vermilion looked straight at Gill. "And his partner. This SeaWing was spared in a battle not two days ago by a well known rank five troop. They have asked to remain unnamed. He was spared because of one the soldiers he had command of. When he saw what the troop was doing, he yelled, 'You cannot kill the king! The king will live forever!' It is now believed that he may be of royal heritage. Gill of the SeaWings!"

Some guards flew up to Gill's prison and grabbed his tail and talons. One of them unclipped his wires, and he was lowered to the sands. He didn't struggle on the way down. The fall might kill him if he did.

On the sands, he looked nervously at Jumpingcactus. He really did have two tails. And they both had poisonous barbs at the end. It wasn't like a tail that was split in two, either. He legitamately had two of them. 

Vermilion looked over both teams with satisfaction. He yelled loudly, "Claws up! Teeth ready! Fight!" And with that, he bolted straight up and curved away in blur. 

Gill sized up Plain. "Do you want to kill me?" he asked. She shook her head. "Are you going to anyway?" She nodded. 

He looked to Schist instead. "What about you?"

Schist didn't answer either. He barreled at Gill with his talons outstretched to grab him. Gill slammed his tail into Schist's neck, making his healing wound throb with pain. Schist veered sideways and Gill pinned him down.

Jumpingcactus didn't seem in any hurry to help. He stayed around the edge of the arena until Plain threw herself at him, at which point he used one tail to whack her as he moved away. She followed him around the arena as Gill turned his attention back under him.

"Schist, I'm sure you don't like killing."

He smiled maniacally. "What do you think a SkyWing is doing in the arena?"

"Good point," Gill said, not really needing to think about it. "But if you were to pick any dragon to kill, would you pick a prisoner? Or the one imprisoning you? You know what, don't answer that. That was the worst thing I could ever say to any one dragon, ever."

Schist smiled again with a murderous look in his eyes. "You think you can convince me not to fight, don't you? Well this is what I've been doing all my life. If you wana do that, you'll kill me and convince my dead body to do it." Before Gill could say anything else, Schist blasted him in the face with his fire breath. He didn't get burned, but the heat that his face when he dodged it was unbearable, and he had to jump off of him.

Work in progress. And for clarification, I know that King Gill talked his way beautifully out of all his fights. I'm totally aware of this okay? I'm not quite sure what he would have actually said. This might not be updated for a long time because I need to figure it out. 

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