Sally tried to get her tongue to settle into place so she could respond. Even so her brain was unwilling to provide much in terms of vocabulary. “Ow,” she wailed as her stomach and muscles began to send data to her reawakening nerves. It felt as if someone had cleaned out every inch of her arterial network with hot pokers, and given the rest of her insides a wash with pure acid. Her arms and legs were pummeled, the bones within them the consistency of broken balsa wood. “What happened?”

He began to sob. Tears from his eyes cascaded over her cheeks like a benediction as he gathered her with gentle hands and cradled her body close to him. “Sally-mine, you gave me quite the scare. Don’t ever do that again.”

“Believe me,” she wrapped her arms around him, happy to have him to hold. “I will try to avoid it.” For her, no sign could be greater of where she stood in his life. A man so large and commanding was not used to revealing any weakness. This break in his impregnable façade was like a balm for her quaking heart.dragon_teaser2a

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