Part 291 – This Is The Truth, The Whole Truth, And Nothing But The Truth

Ambrose pulled his knees up to his chest and pressed his forehead against them. “You’re alive. Did…did I…did I change you?”

“No, Mr. Smith.”

“Then, how are you alive? I know I took more than I should have. That should have killed you.”

“It didn’t.”

“Obviously. Why?” Ambrose raised his head, even though he still couldn’t see. “Tell me.”

“I’m sorry, Mr. Smith, but—”

That dragon…”I saw a dragon that smelled of sandalwood and incense. Large. Deep, dark blue. Silver crest. Was that you?”

Sammy didn’t respond.

“You don’t have to be afraid, Sammy. I will not betray you. If I do, which I won’t, you can hand me over to Mark Caten.”

Footsteps.

Sammy’s scent drifted away from him.

“Where you going?”

Footsteps stopped.

Silence.

“Sammy?” Ambrose staggered up to his feet, which made him feel unbalanced and vulnerable. “Talk to me.” He shuffled forward.

I’m going to fall. he thought. I’m going to fall. I’m going to step off the edge of the precipice and I am going to fall.

He opened his eyes wider, but that didn’t help him see anything. “Don’t leave me here. Not like this. Please.”

“You’re right.” Sammy’s voice was soft and calm.

Ambrose stopped.

“I am that dragon.” He fell silent for several minutes.

Ambrose didn’t speak. He waited.

“What I’ve told you about myself is true. I was born in Brooklyn.”

The cold wind died and the air was still.

“Loving family. Good home. Strong Brooklyn accent.” He paused. “Very strong emotions. I kept making things break, things catch on fire.”

Another long pause.

“I broke a little girl. She was teasing me and calling me names and I…I lost it. She fell down, broken. She looked like cracked porcelain. Nothing could fix her. Not even our magic. We fled the city.”

Ambrose swallowed hard. It’s not that this story isn’t touching or sad and I am paying attention. But sacrebleu! I wish I had some sense of where I am in relation to the edge of this cliff. I feel like I’m going to vomit everywhere from the sheer stress of it all.

“Everything else that I told you is all true. But I never told you that Caten had me in his Davisburg park.”

Ambrose froze.

“As one of his exhibits. That whole experience made me see us, see extraordinaries as they see us. As objects to stare at, to point at, to lock behind bars—”

The ground started to shake again.

“Stop it! I don’t want to fall.”

The ground became still.

“I’m sorry. Anyway, that experience inspired me to create Sammy’s Place. And the rest of the story….Ah! There she is!”

The trace sound of wings whispered in the air. “What is it?”

“My mother.”

Ambrose could hear the smile in his voice.

“She’s safe.”

.

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