2 Kate Wilhelm Baby Dragon Stories An introduction by Kate Wilhelm I ve told stories all my life. I told my younger brothers stories, then my own children, grandchildren, on to great grandchildren. I told a story about Baby Dragon to my three-yearold granddaughter and she loved him. Week after week she asked for more Baby Dragon stories. Seven or eight years ago, visiting my son and his family in upstate New York, my great grandchildren asked if they could take me to school for show and tell. Show their ancient great grandmother from that mysterious place called Oregon and tell what? I compromised: I d go if their teacher permitted me to tell the class a story. The teacher permitted. I told a mixed class of first and second graders a Baby Dragon story, and they loved it. They spent some time in the days that followed illustrating it. These were all oral stories, made up on the spot in most cases. I put this one on paper and am offering a Baby Dragon story here for your children, your grandchildren, and if you re as blessed as I have been, perhaps your great grandchildren. My Christmas gift to them. Wishing a wonderful holiday to all.
3 Baby Dragon Fixes a Tree Kate Wilhelm Illustration by Sydney Consadine 2012 InfinityBox Press LLC On an island far, far away Baby Dragon lived with Mama and Papa Dragon. Papa Dragon was mostly green and gold, with a little bit of red, a little bit of blue, silver, lavender, and many other colors. He was as big as a mountain, and when he breathed fire, sparks flew from his eyes. Mama Dragon was mostly silver and blue, with a little bit of red, a little bit of green, gold, lavender, and many other colors. Her eyes were as red as cherries, and when she breathed fire her eyes glowed like coals. Baby Dragon was green and gold, silver and blue, red and lavender, and too many other colors to name. His eyes were as blue as the sky. Around his neck he wore a gold chain with a silver whistle. Try as hard as he could, pumping his stubby wings furiously, he could not fly. Huffing and puffing with all his might, when he tried to breathe fire all that came out was a little warm air. Never mind, Mama Dragon said. One day you ll be as big as your father, but for now you have a job to do. You must guard our treasure. Remember, if you need us, blow your magic whistle and we ll be here in a flash. In the back of the dragon cave on the mountain side, treasure was piled to the ceiling. Gold coins, bracelets, pearls, rubies, crowns, silver and gold plates and cups, watches, gold bricks, silver spoons and bowls, diamond tiaras Every day Mama and Papa Dragon flew away to search for more lost treasures, and Baby Dragon guarded the cave. On the other side of the mountain Mr. and Mrs. Fox lived in their den, and every day Mr. Fox tried to think of a way to steal some of the dragon treasure. He was not afraid of Baby Dragon, but he knew about the magic whistle, and he knew that if Mama or Papa Dragon found him near the dragon cave, or near Baby Dragon, he would be a roasted fox. A storm had blown all night with howling wind and driving rain, but the morning was bright with sunshine and the air was cool and fresh. After Baby Dragon watched Mama and Papa Dragon fly away to work, he hurried down to the beach to see what the storm had brought ashore. Many shells were scattered about, and some of them were new and strange, not the kind he usually found. He hurried back to the cave to fetch a bag, and on the beach again, he began to collect new and interesting seashells. Then Baby Dragon saw a little broken tree, and he stopped by it and thought that if he could fix it, he would have his own tree. He could take naps under it when the sun was high and hot. When the tree grew tall, he could climb it, and if it had nuts, he could eat them. Happily, he pulled the little tree out of the sand and turned back to the dragon cave with his bag of seashells, dragging his broken tree behind him.
4 Kate Wilhelm When he got to the dragon cave, he saw that his little tree had lost most of its leaves on the way. When he tried to stand it up, it fell over. He tried again and again, but the little tree would not stay upright. He sat down and looked at it sadly. What good was a tree that wouldn t stand up? Then he thought about the gold bricks in the cave and he decided to build a house for the tree, not the whole tree, just the bottom part of it, for it to lean against if it wanted to. Up on the mountain side, Mr. Fox was watching Baby Dragon, laughing. Silly baby, he said. Thinks he can plant a dead tree. He watched Baby Dragon go into the cave and return with a gold brick, then do it again, and yet again. Mr. Fox jumped up and said, This is my chance. When he takes his nap, I ll get a gold brick or two. Every day Baby Dragon curled up to nap at the entrance of the cave and Mr. Fox couldn t get inside without waking him. But now Baby Dragon was bringing treasure outside, and when he took his nap, Mr. Fox could pick up the gold bricks. He hurried back over the mountain, and ran to his den to get a bag for gold bricks. When Mr. Fox returned, he hid behind a tree and watched again. Baby Dragon had built a pen around the tree, and it was standing up. But Baby Dragon was sitting in front of it. He was not taking a nap. Even if he did take a nap, if Mr. Fox removed a brick or two, the tree could fall down again, and that would surely wake up Baby Dragon. He might even blow his magic whistle. Mr. Fox sat down to wait and see what Baby Dragon would do next. Baby Dragon was puzzled. His tree did not look right, not like he thought it would look if it stood up. Every time he moved it, more leaves fell off until now it had only a few left. One of them drifted down as he watched. He rose and walked into the cave where he looked at the shining treasure and he wished his broken tree was as beautiful as the glittering diamonds, as brilliant as the gold and silver plates and cups. He had an idea. He picked up a gold cup and then a silver cup and took them back to the tree where he hung them on the bare branches. He could fix his tree, he thought then. He could make it beautiful. Mr. Fox watched. His heart began to thump with excitement. Baby Dragon was bringing more and more treasure from the cave and putting it on the dead tree. Bracelets with red rubies, green emeralds, diamonds. Necklaces of gold and silver, diamond rings, a tiara or two studded with gemstones, two crowns, silver bells The silly little dragon was bringing the treasure out for Mr. Fox to take. Every time Baby Dragon returned to the cave, Mr. Fox raced closer to the treasure tree until he was close enough to pluck off a necklace, or a bracelet, two rings, cups He shoved them all into his bag and left it close to the tree behind a rock, and he ran to hide behind a bigger rock before Baby Dragon saw him. Baby Dragon rummaged through the treasure mountain. He was looking for more pearl necklaces that looked so pretty strung from branch to branch of the tree. He looked for more diamond necklaces that sparkled like fire, more dangling earrings that flashed like lightning with every little breeze, more silver bells that made music when the wind blew. He was humming to himself. Then he stopped moving. He heard a long low whistle. Mama was coming home. He ran outside to wait for her, to surprise her with his beautiful tree. Mr. Fox heard the whistle, too, and he froze behind his large rock. There was no time to race up the mountain and out of sight on the other side. He crouched down lower and lower, as low as he could get and covered his eyes with his hands so she would not see him. He would stay where he was until the dragons were inside their cave, then he would get his bag of treasure and run home. Mama! Mama! Look at my beautiful tree! Baby Dragon shouted even before Mama Dragon landed in front of the dragon cave.
5 Baby Dragon Fixes A Tree Oh, my, Mama Dragon said. Oh, my! Isn t it beautiful? I fixed it. It was broken and all the leaves fell off, but I fixed it. Baby Dragon was dancing with happiness. Can I keep it? It is very beautiful, Mama Dragon said. Yes, you can keep it, but we have to take it inside. It will rain in a little while and we don t want it to get wet. My own tree inside my house, Baby Dragon said. Forever and ever. Mama Dragon carried the tree inside the cave. The dangling earrings flashed like lightning and the silver bells tinkled when she lifted it. Baby Dragon thought the tree was singing because it was fixed and it had a home. He picked up a gold brick and took it inside. Mr. Fox raised his head just enough to see if it was safe to leave his hiding place. It wasn t yet. Baby Dragon could carry only one gold brick at a time and he kept coming out, going in, coming out again. Finally all the bricks were inside, and Mr. Fox looked, but he ducked down quickly. Baby Dragon was standing at the cave entrance watching for Papa Dragon. The rain started to fall, and the wind was blowing harder. The sunshine was gone and it was getting dark. Inside the cave entrance Baby Dragon kept looking at his beautiful tree, and watching for Papa Dragon. He wanted to show him how he had fixed the tree all by himself. Then he heard another low whistle and he cried, He s coming. Papa s coming! Behind the rock Mr. Fox shivered and flattened himself against the ground as flat as he could get. He covered his eyes again, but he heard the whir of great wings, and he heard Baby Dragon s excited voice calling out to Papa Dragon. Just a little while longer, Mr. Fox told himself. I ll wait until they re all settled down inside the cave, then I ll get the bag of treasure and run home. A little rain isn t going to hurt me. But he was cold and he was very wet and it seemed a long time before Papa Dragon, Mama Dragon and Baby Dragon were all inside the cave. Then, just as he was getting up his nerve to go get his bag of treasure, he heard Baby Dragon say, Papa, make a little fire so I can see where I left my bag. Papa Dragon blew a little fire and Baby Dragon ran from the cave and looked for his bag of shells. He grabbed it and ran back inside with it. I have a present for Mama and you, he said. This time, sure that they were all inside, and would not see him, Mr. Fox cautiously rose from the ground and shook himself. It was very dark and the rain was hard against him as he crept down nearer to where the tree had been, feeling around for his bag of treasure. He could not see it or anything else, but at last he felt it and picked it up, then turned and ran as fast as he could up over the mountain and to his den. Mrs. Fox met him near the door, scolding him for staying out all day, and coming home soaking wet. Wait until you see what I have for you, Mr. Fox said. He emptied the bag on the floor and stared and stared. Why did you bring a bag of shells and sand home with you? Mrs. Fox cried. Look at that mess on my floor! She snatched up a broom and swept the shells, sand, dirt, and even Mr. Fox out of the den and slammed the door. In the dragon cave Baby Dragon said, I found all this for you, Mama and Papa. Look! He emptied his bag and stared and stared. Gold and silver cups, rings, necklaces. What a good little dragon you are! Mama Dragon said, hugging him. Baby Dragon looked at the gift of treasure, then he looked at his beautiful tree and he thought, My tree is magic. Because I fixed it, it turned my shells into treasure. THE END.
6 Publisher s note: Baby Dragon Fixes a Tree is copyright 2012 InfinityBox Press LLC, and is a gift from Kate Wilhelm and InfinityBox Press. While we invite you to share it with everyone, it may not be used commercially for profit of any kind. Thanks and enjoy... And, please visit us at: to see what s new. And, by all means, visit us on Facebook, Like us, and sign up for our occasional newsletter.
8 Baby Dragon and the Sea Monster Kate Wilhelm Illustration by Sydney Consadine 2013 InfinityBox Press LLC Baby Dragon was partly green and gold, like Papa Dragon, and partly blue and silver, like Mama Dragon, with some red and orange, and pink and violet besides. His eyes were as blue as the sky. His wings were short and stubby and he could not fly. Every day he spread his stubs of wings and jumped off high rocks, but he only fell to the ground. He ran as fast as he could but he did not leave the ground and fly. He huffed and puffed until his face was red, but when he tried to breathe fire all that came out was a little warm air. He looked at Papa Dragon s long green and gold tail with a sigh. He wished he had such a beautiful tail. Never mind, Mama Dragon said. When you grow up you ll be the most beautiful dragon in the world. You ll be so strong you can fly to the moon. But for now, you have a job to do. You must guard our treasure. In the dragon cave the treasure was piled as high as the ceiling. There were gold rings with diamonds. Crowns with jewels. Necklaces with every precious gem on earth. Gold plates and cups. Mirrors with silver and gold frames. Bricks of gold stacked like a wall. And much, much more. Remember, Mama Dragon said, if you need us, blow your magic whistle and we ll be here in a flash. Every day Mama and Papa Dragon flew away to find more treasures. On the other side of the mountain lived Mr. and Mrs. Fox. Every day Mr. Fox tried to think of a way to get inside the dragon cave and steal some of the treasure. He was not a bit afraid of Baby Dragon, but he was very much afraid of Mama and Papa Dragon. He knew about the magic whistle that could bring them in a flash. If they caught him near dragon cave, he would be roast fox. Day after day Mr. Fox ran over the mountain and through the woods until there were only a few more trees. He ran down lower and hid behind a tree and watched Baby Dragon playing near the dragon cave. When Baby Dragon looked away, Mr. Fox ran down lower and hid behind another tree. At last there were no more trees to hide behind. There was only one big rock. He waited until Baby Dragon went down to the beach and he ran and hid behind the rock. It was still a long way to the dragon cave and there was nothing left to hide behind. When Baby Dragon finds something that makes him forget to look at the cave, Mr. Fox
9 Kate Wilhelm said, I ll go down the rest of the way. Baby Dragon always found wonderful things on the beach. There were shells of many colors, and sometimes a crab. He picked up one and it pinched his finger. He did not pick up a crab again. Sometimes there were little fish in the pools in the rocks. He tried and tried to catch one, but they always got away. One time there was a turtle who could hide his head and his legs. Baby Dragon tried to hide his head, but he didn t know how to do that. No matter how many wonderful things Baby Dragon found, he always remembered to look up at the dragon cave from time to time. When Baby Dragon leaned down to look at something, Mr. Fox could not see him. When he stood up and raised his head again Mr. Fox saw him. He waited and waited behind the big rock. One windy day Baby Dragon saw the longest sea weed that he had ever seen. It was green and wet, and many shells were stuck in it. They were shining like gold in the sunshine. The sea weed was longer than Papa Dragon s green and gold tail. What a beautiful tail it would make me, Baby Dragon said. I would be like a grown up dragon with a tail like that. He tied the long wet sea weed to his nub of a tail. When he took a step or two, his beautiful tail followed. He ran and his new tail followed. He saw a piece of driftwood with holes all over it and he picked it up and held it like a club. Now I can really guard the treasure, he said. No one will come near me with such a long tail and a club. Mr. Fox saw Baby Dragon run and look behind himself. He saw him wave the piece of driftwood and he laughed. Something is chasing him, Mr. Fox said. Silly little dragon, no one s afraid of you and your club. Baby Dragon began to think of a snack and a nap. He climbed up on a rock, with his long tail following, and then he jumped off and ran a few steps. When he looked back, he saw that the tail had come loose and stayed on the rock. What s after him? Mr. Fox said. He stuck his head out from behind the rock to get a better look. Something chasing Baby Dragon was green and it looked scaly. A sea monster! Mr. Fox said. A sea monster is chasing Baby Dragon! Good. It will swallow him in one bite. He won t have time to blow his whistle. Then I can go down and get all the treasure I can carry! Eat Baby Dragon, sea monster! Gobble him up! Baby Dragon looked at the seaweed stuck on the rock. He said, I can get my tail again after I have a snack. He threw his driftwood club close to it. I can get that, too, after a nap, he said. He ran the rest of the way to dragon cave. Mr. Fox laughed again when he saw Baby Dragon throw his driftwood and run. That piece of wood full of holes won t stop a sea monster, he said. What a silly little dragon he is. He can t run faster than such a monster. But the sea monster wasn t chasing Baby Dragon any longer. Eat him now! Mr. Fox called, then covered his mouth, afraid Baby Dragon might hear. The sea weed began to slide off the rock. It was drying out in the sunshine, and the wind lifted it and put it down again and again. It must have seen me! Mr. Fox said. When I put my head out to get a better look, it must have seen me. Or it heard me call out. It would rather eat a nice plump fox than a bony baby dragon! It s coming after me! He stood up taller and he saw more of the sea monster. It was moving up and down. It was even bigger than he had thought. It was the longest sea monster he had ever seen. He began to
10 Baby Dragon and the Sea Monster back away from his hiding rock. Then he turned and ran as fast as his legs could carry him. The wind blew harder. It blew sand and bits of broken sea shells. They clattered against rocks and trees. They sounded like the foot steps of a sea monster. The wind was warm and it felt like the hot breath of the sea monster getting closer. Mr. Fox was afraid to look back. He was afraid that he might stumble and fall and be caught and eaten. He ran faster and faster, up and over the mountain, all the way home. Quick! he said, running inside his den. Close the door! Bar it! A sea monster is coming! It s after me! It has teeth bigger than my head. Mrs. Fox slammed the door shut and barred it. Mr. Fox and Mrs. Fox held each other, shaking with fear, afraid to make a sound, listening for the sea monster. After Baby Dragon finished his snack he curled up at the door of the dragon cave to take a nap. Soon he was asleep. He dreamed he was flying. His beautiful long green and gold tail was following. He looked like a rainbow streaking through the sky to the moon. THE END
11 Publisher s note: Baby Dragon and the Sea Monster is copyright 2013 InfinityBox Press LLC, and is a gift from Kate Wilhelm and InfinityBox Press. While we invite you to share it with everyone, it may not be used commercially for profit of any kind. Thanks and enjoy... And, please visit us at: to see what s new. And, by all means, visit us on Facebook, Like us, and sign up for our occasional newsletter.
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Dumped by Paul Nash firstname.lastname@example.org 54 Howson Road London SE4 2AT 07957 548052 www.paul-nash.com FADE IN: Silence. The taps glistening in the morning light. The sparkling bath. Toothbrush holder
Chapter 17 Isach was still upset by the treatment he and the other Gorstrums suffered at the hands of Uncle Franda and the brothers. He was determined to appease his wounded psyche by finding a human girl
Suzanne Nelson SCHOLASTIC INC. For Aunt Carol and Grandma Sue, two resilient women I admire and love If you purchased this book without a cover, you should be aware that this book is stolen property. It