Home > That Time I Got Drunk and Saved a Human

That Time I Got Drunk and Saved a Human
Author: Kimberly Lemming



Chapter 1


   “Gods, I am so fucking scared right now.” Madam Shadow’s voice shook as she spoke, yet she kept her hand outstretched. Behind her, Fallon leaned against the wall with his arms crossed. The shadow dragon watched our brief training session with bored nonchalance. It was a front of course. If his little human so much as yelped, I’d have a brawl on my hands.

   He didn’t possess the strength my seven centuries had afforded me, but he had an impressive amount of magic in his arsenal. By absorbing the false goddess Myva, Fallon had positioned himself as a formidable threat. Despite his young age.

   “You’re going to be fine,” I reassured her. She would be. I’d been practicing all week. The first few attempts with Usha were a little less than savory but it’d been a long time since I’d had to curb my strength. A dragon’s power grew as they aged and the extra strength was something I never had to worry about in Volsog. Demons were so much more durable than humans.

   I reached out to take her hand in mine.

   “Wait!” Brie called out. She looked in between Madam Shadow and me and held her hands up. “Are we sure he’s ready for this? Maybe we could start off with a porcelain doll or something. If he doesn’t break that, then we can move on to hands again. It’s only been a few days since his last attempt, and that did not end well.”

   Usha sighed from her spot in the captain’s chair. “Agreed. He may not be ready.” She rubbed at her shoulder absent-mindedly, as if it still pained her.

   Irritation made my jaw clench. “Enough of your dramatics. I healed you, didn’t I? Madam Shadow will be fine.”

   “You broke my shoulder,” she hissed back at me.

   “It was an accident.” Truly it was. What was meant to be a friendly pat on the shoulder had sent the human flying across the ship’s deck. Usha had been left with a fractured shoulder and had aimed a litany of colorful curses in my direction. Fortunately for her, the matter was easily fixed with a basic healing spell. Simple injuries were manageable, yet healing magic was by far not my forte. If the bones had splintered, then she would’ve been in for a long and painful recovery.

   It wasn’t until that minor incident that I realized I had never actually touched a human, despite having stayed on the Banshee for over a year. The ship’s crew mostly comprised other demons. When I thought back on it, I realized I’d never actually been alone with the two humans on board. Or alone with any human, really. So how was I supposed to know how weak they truly are?

   Felix threw his arm around his worried wife. “He’s going to need to start with real people again at some point. It won’t do Dante any good if he leaves to find a mate only to end up killing the poor thing as soon as he goes in for a kiss.”

   As much as I hated to admit it, he was right. The likelihood of my fated mate being one of the few demon women left in the world were slim to none. Fallon and Felix had found happiness in their human wives and I longed for that same companionship. Though I suppose Brie would soon be a werewolf. It was only a few days until the full moon and the bite mark on her arm was a constant reminder of what was to come. The circumstances of her bite were less than ideal, but the two seemed to have made their peace with it.

   “I don’t need to practice on another doll. Madam Shadow will be fine.”

   The co-captain’s hand shook, but she stood firm. “I told you to call me ‘Cin’. The whole Madam thing is weird.”

   “Right,” I sighed. “You humans are an informal lot. Are you ready, Cin?”

   She took a deep breath and nodded.

   I stared at the outstretched hand, determined. It had taken a few shattered porcelain objects to get right, but I was confident in my ability to curb my strength now. I practiced on Felix the day before and he had deemed my grip safe enough for humans. Though the fact that he refused to let his wife stand in as my practice partner did not escape my notice. Not that it mattered. Cinnamon had proven herself to be a brave human and looked far more durable than Brie.

   Slowly, I raised my hand to hers. She sealed her eyes shut and turned her head away. As gently as I could manage, I closed my hand around hers and shook once. When the fragile bones in her fingers didn’t crumple under my grip, she peeked one eye open.

   “Oh!” Cin gasped. “He did it!”

   The room let out a collective sigh of relief. Which was more than a little insulting. I wasn’t a monster. I just needed a little practice. Cinnamon patted our joined hands and smiled up at me. I returned her grin before releasing her. “Of course I did. I told you it would be fine.”

   Usha rolled her eyes. “A lot of confidence coming from a man who broke three of my fingers a few days ago.”

   My, that one could hold a grudge. “And once again, I’m sorry for the fingers as well.”

   The captain sighed and got up from her chair. “Doesn’t matter. It’s over now.” She moved to my side and clapped a hand on my back. “Congrats on no longer being a walking threat. Does this mean you’ll be flying off soon?”

   Cinnamon pursed her lips. “You don’t have to fly off right away, do you? We should at least have a send-off party.”

   “Rabbit,” Fallon sighed. “Not every occasion requires a party.”

   She shot a glare at her husband and put a hand on her hip. “That is where you’re wrong. There’s no better way to start a journey than with a festival. He can stick around for one more night. Right, Dante?” she asked, turning back to me.

   The sound of Brie’s giggling caught my ear. I glanced over to see that Felix had leaned in close and was whispering some nonsense that had the woman slapping his chest. The werewolf grinned and kissed her temple.

   Gods, they make me sick.

   “No,” I said, tearing my eyes away from the disgustingly happy couple. “I’d rather pack my things tonight and head out in the morning. Besides, I’m eager to see how much the world has changed since before Volsog’s gates closed.” It wasn’t a complete lie. I was only a hundred and some odd years old when Myva rose up and banished all non-humans to a frozen hellscape. There is no telling how different the world looked after 600 years.

   Her shoulders sank. “Right, I guess that makes sense. Damn, first Alexis flies off without so much as a farewell and now you.”

   “Not entirely sure we should mourn the loss of a murderous talking sword,” Brie cut in.

   Cinnamon shrugged. “I mean, she really only killed people we needed her to.”

   “So far,” Brie replied.

   “Don’t worry, Cin, I’ll be sure to drop by every now and then.” I bid everyone farewell and headed into my quarters below deck. Packing wouldn’t take long. I had little to my name aboard the Banshee. Any time we went out pirating, I took my share of loot and warped myself back to my castle in Volsog with the power of my Hearthstones. If I left one Hearthstone in the place I had last been, traveling back and forth was always an easy endeavor. So long as no idiot entered my quarters and took the stone from under my bed. Thankfully, no one on the ship was foolish enough to incur the wrath of a dragon.

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