The Dragon’s Flame


“…aw, please… One more story?”

Sigh. ” It’s late, Adam.”

” Please please please!”

Dad sits adjusting the blankets around his son.” Okay one more… What do you…”


” We’ve done that to death. I have an idea. How about one of Puff’s Dragon ancestors? You do know that they are all named Puff, don’t you?”

” Well… I think so. Okay. A story about Puff … The ancestor! Dad?”

” Yeah?”

” What’s an ancestor?”

Sigh.” This Puff was his great – great – great great great great – Grandfather. Do you understand?”

Adam nodded yes, pulling the covers closer to his chin and snuggling down. “Now, I have a question for you: something happened to this Puff… What do you think could have happened to him?”

” I know I know… Couldn’t breathe fire!”

“Aah… That is right I forgot. So… At this time, all dragons were fierce and they flew. Their bellies were full of fire, and this  is what helped them fly. But, sadly, this Puff lost the fire in his belly. Gee, you know… I seem to have forgotten how that happened?”

” Maybe it’s cause, um… Somebody yelled at him?”

” You are right. Somebody yelled at him, and he lost the fire inside of him. Puff had been one of the bravest, most handsome, most wonderful of all dragons. Every body looked up to him, except one horrible mean disgusting nasty icky Dragon: the grandmother!”

” DAD! Leave grandma alone.”

They both smiled.” Okay, okay. It was the Queen of the Dragons… Dragonbubby! She was the most feared Dragon of them all. One day Puff got in her way while he was trying to clean a section of the Royal Cave. He missed a major area that the Queen wanted to shine. It was an honest mistake, but sadly… The Queen took it the wrong way. She screamed and  ranted close to an hour… And then some.”

” That is a lot of screaming.”

” Yes it is. At the end, Puff was worn out. His tail drooped, his years flopped, and his wings were bent really weird angles. He left the cave to go fly off but when he tried… He found he could not fly. All the fire and him had gone out. I hate to tell you this but he felt like crying. Walking around the cave area all the other dragons felt bad for him. Well, most of them did. Not all. Those dragons make fun of him.

A week passed, and he still did not have the fire in his belly so that he could fly. He went to five different Dragon doctors, and they all stroked their white beards (which, you do know, that all wise Dragon doctors have long white beards)…”

” Even Lady Dragon doctors?”

” uh huh. Well, all of these doctors had different things to tell him, but again, sadly, none of them knew how to fix this problem. Puff was down by the lake of the Crater of the Moon, just staring at himself in his reflection in the water. Suddenly, overhead, he noticed a Golden blonde Dragon flying overhead, circling.

It was an old friend his and he had not seen for quite a while. Her name was Sally…”

” Hey… That’s mom’s name!”

” Funny thing… You are right. Well, Sally landed right next to Puff and asked him him what was the matter.

Up unto this moment, Puff had not really been paying attention to her. When he turned to her to answer her, he just stopped. She was smiling, happy to see him after so long…

She glowed. Her smile was a golden transformation of utter brilliance. It was her  that shone like the sun; a smile that gleamed like 1000 sparklers. Sally was so gloriously beautiful it took Puff’s remaining breath away. He was speechless.”

“… Yeah? And then?”

“um… They talked and they talked and then they talked some more. She made him laugh. He made her laugh. He told her what was wrong and she listened. The smile on her face grew and became her face. The smile became her. She said: ‘look, Puff, you… You are glowing.’

He was. There was a heat in his belly that was far greater than any fire he had ever experienced in his entire life. His tail undrooped, and his ears unflopped, and his wings unbent into their normal shape. Puff had never felt like this before. Neither had Sally.

At the same time, they jumped in the air and flew. Puff was always a great flyer, but he was able to soar higher then ever. So did Sally. It is still said today, in Dragon tales, how they flew. Together they were golden sunshine, and together they remained for a very, very long time.

Okay. That’s it. Time for you to go to sleep. Love you!”

” Love you too, dad. ‘Night”

He got up, went to the door, turned off the lights, and stepped outside into the hall way.

” Hi.” It was a smile on her face.

” You there the whole time?”

” Yeah. I was.” The smile grew brighter.

He smiled back, equal.

“C’mere “Puff”… I think some golden sunshine is coming your way!”

They kissed.

” I love you.”

” I love you!”

The hallway lit up like 1000 thousand suns.

29 responses »

  1. Bedtime stories are the best. I especially love the ‘double awe’ you spin with this one.
    Do you have a mountain of these ready to post or do you crank these out daily? I love your stories.


    • hi Lisa… No mountains ready. I only write when I am inspired. Which is just about daily in some cases. I wish I could write every single day, but well… Life happens

      this was actually a very short improvisation piece I did today at a library showcase. It was all of 1 min. if that. I found I had to write it complete when I got home

      thank you for the compliment


  2. Great story, Stu!
    I always love Puff- one of the firms with which I have been associated for years was PolyUrethane Foam Fabricators- one my buddy started and grew into an interesting enterprise. Puff was the mascot and the emblem and we chose to use the Peter Paul and Mary song for all corporate meetings…


  3. This was beautiful, Stu–thanks for sharing. I enjoyed it at so many different levels… The bedtime storytelling was done brilliantly, how the father entices the son’s participation, kind of letting the story take shape with the boy’s input. I’m not a mother, so I have no idea if that’s how it’s done (it’s not how my bedtime stories went, back in the day), but I love the concept. And how the dad ends up telling a deeper story, if only to himself (and to the unseen listener at the door). Great story, Stu. Left me with a warm glow in my belly, too 🙂


  4. Awww! The best sort of improv is storytelling for our kids at bedtime. (We just need to make sure that they don’t recognize certain family members ;-0 ) I like the use of “fire in the belly” as the means for dragons to fly. Well done.


  5. Very sweet, I, too, like that the father encourages the son’s input so he helps to write the story. About the glow in the belly in the dad and the one in the hall, I think you have given me an idea for a story. Will let you know if it works out. No plagerism, I promise, just the hint of an idea.


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