Starting Point: Dragon’s Blood

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“It’s dead,” said Rutani. “For now.”

At that very moment nanites inside the lifeless corpse would be busy repairing the damage we’d done to their host; replicating cells, stitching torn flesh and replacing lost blood. Soon information would begin streaming in from transmitters in multiple locations, uploading what parts of the mind and memory could not be saved locally. Then that same upload process would set into motion the whirling electrical patterns that are the unconscious mind, and that unconscious mind would–after a moment’s respite–begin to crave consciousness.

The dragon would wake violently, and would react violently to those of us who had crowded around it. It would quickly find its feet and then its wings, and it would try to retreat to a safe place so as to let the nanites finish their work. If it could snatch one of us to take home it likely would, as food to fuel the healing process. I had seen it happen before.

“Let’s work quickly.” Rutani was calm, but there was a nervous haste in his voice. He could see that the wound on the dragon’s neck was already beginning to fizz with nanite activity. We didn’t have long to get what we needed.

How would you continue this story? What do the characters need from the dragon, and why?

Share your thoughts and ideas in the comments section below.


Image credit: Capcom (Dragon’s Dogma concept art)

  • Leonardo Faria

    The dragon is indeed a bio-engineered organism. It is being used as a biological weapon to keep some areas of a dystopian post-apocalyptic planet Earth clear of human inhabitants. The perpetrators are a sort of ruling race, intent to keep a privileged access to the planet’s resources to themselves, restraining the access to the rest of humanity.
    Trouble is the dragons often trespass… and go where they don’t belong, in the lands of the Lords… So special squads are sent to dispatch them, and carry them back in the areas where the dragons have the scarecrow office (a frightening and lethal scarecrow, indeed).
    But for the transportation to safely happen there’s a moment when the vital activities are in stand by (soon after the nanite carried out recovery), and you have to be very quick to take advantage of it (it only lasts 1,045 seconds). The dragon becomes a very ugly client to deal with after that time frame.
    To say nothing of the fact that to kill a dragon is not a kid game.

  • Paulo R. Mendes

    These “dragons” can be some sort of biological weapon created by a foreign power — maybe they are members of a colony trying to free themselves of Terran corporated corruption or even by a alien civilization fond of using images of our deepest fears in combat — and they are trying to find a way of stoping the dragons from being ressurrected by the nanites in their bodies.

  • Leonardo Faria

    Disqus widget is a bit of a nuisance. I have a comment on this thread but it doesn’t show up.

    • How strange. It’s showing in my admin area and it says it should be visible here. Your other test comments (I assume) were caught by the spam filter because “hj” is not a word 🙂

      • Leonardo Faria

        Yes, the second was just a test. I went through several online discussions and it seems in wordpress pages Disqus is a little tricky and the correct settings are close to maddening. Thanks for copy&pasting my first comment, Mark.

    • Leonardo’s comment: The dragon is indeed a bio-engineered organism. It is being used as a biological weapon to keep some areas of a dystopian post-apocalyptic planet Earth clear of human inhabitants. The perpetrators are a sort of ruling race, intent to keep a privileged access to the planet’s resources to themselves, restraining the access to the rest of humanity.
      Trouble is the dragons often trespass… and go where they don’t belong, in the lands of the Lords… So special squads are sent to dispatch them, and carry them back in the areas where the dragons have the scarecrow office (a frightening and lethal scarecrow, indeed).
      But for the transportation to safely happen there’s a moment when the vital activities are in stand by (soon after the nanite carried out recovery), and you have to be very quick to take advantage of it (it only lasts 1,045 seconds). The dragon becomes a very ugly client to deal with after that time frame.
      To say nothing of the fact that to kill a dragon is not a kid game.

      • Brayden Watkins

        Gee, that would make quite the short story. And Mark, I submitted a starting point. Has it been received?

        • It has thanks. I’m just about to read it now. Busy week in the potato trade 😉

          • Brayden Watkins

            What did you think of it?

  • Alexander Ranvir

    “Doctor!” Rutani said, calling out to the very fragile doctor currently hiding behind a boulder. “It’s safe! You can come out now.” A head popped out cautiously, his glasses struggling to stay on his starved, bony face.
    “Are you sure?” He responded, terrified of the creatures he had helped create.
    “Well we don’t have much time before it heals so I’d strongly suggest getting over here before we all get slaughtered!” Rutani responded, looking over his tattered blade, the dozens of dead bodies, more than half their force and noting the cracked armour of his Comrades. “We wouldn’t survive another round!”
    “Right! Of course!” The old man muttered as he clambered over the boulder and stumbled his way towards the downed beast, his heart pounding with tension as he took various samples, such as large vials of its blood, the scales and even a tooth. “Perhaps now…” the scientist mused, looking over the vial of blood that moved as the swarm of nanobots in its cells desperately tried to repair the damage even while trapped inside a vial, “this creature can finally fulfil its purpose and rid us of this dreadful plague. I just hope we aren’t too late to save what is left…” the plague, of course, being the one that earth had been suffering from for years now. The dragon, originally a nanorobotic substance designed to cure the sick of their diseases. Although perhaps it had misinterpreted the meaning of ‘cure’… The doctor jumped, nearly dropping the vial in fear as the terrifying beast began to stir.

    • Leonardo Faria

      Nice one. The removal of organic samples for research/medical purposes is more consistent with the narrative premises, and the claimed “need” of the team.
      But I’ll add however another lead just to explore more in depth the given clues of the story.
      The doctor has to operate a sterilization of the dragon. Creatures with no natural predator (for all we know), immortal, and possessing almost unlimited capabilities to harm humans would soon make adaptation impossible (not just for humans). So at the very least their race needs to be made infertile, thus allowing humans to preserve their little ecological niche.
      Since they seem man made, it’s now time to stall the grievous consequences brought about by humans to play God!

  • Might be able to get something up here in a couple of weeks, been drifting away from science fiction, my experimentation with dark fantasy, lovecraftian horror and general victoriana has driven me to less technologically driven styles

    • Paulo R. Mendes

      Lovecraftian Horror?! oh-oh! time to check if my Life Insurance includes mental treatment…D8