For two days I looked around my black seaweed forest and gathered up the one hundred twelve crossbow bolts that the gillmen had missed me with. Only fifty were broken. Sixty-two were still perfectly usable. Of the fifty, I could most likely fix them all too. I did not push myself, just strolled around the fronds. When I found broken ones I piled them on top of the pearls that I had removed from the gillmens belt pouches. I would need to make more bolt quivers from the black seaweed. Or better yet remake the belt pouches into them. A project for tomorrow, now that I have found all the bolts.
I was just about to relax for the night when a cone of boiling water surrounded me from behind. It burned but still I turned to see the source. A tiny dragon with scales like the shallows on a sunny day attached itself to the front neckline of my eel skin studded armor by its front claws. “Thief.” It hissed in my face. If I had not turned it would have been secure upon my back.
“I have stolen nothing from a dragon” I said removing the bayonet off the chain belt. “But I will defend myself,” I added stabbing up into the dragon.
“Liar.” The dragon states biting the tip of my nose. “The gillman told me how you killed his guards and stole my tithe of forty saltwater pearls.”
“I stole nothing from you.” I declared, stabbing the tiny dragon again. It opened its mouth wide and a cone of the boiling hot ocean water hit me directly in the face. I couldn’t see. All I could feel was the pain from it. I fumbled with my left hand at the chain belt and pulled off my potion of healing that I had gotten off a skum I had killed a while back. I uncorked it and drank it quickly. The dragon took a swipe at it but missed. The pain receded. It was still there. I wasn’t even healed from the last fight with the gillmen from just two days ago and now this but I would survive. I jerked my head to the right as the dragon tried to bite me again then stabbed it. I jerked my head straight back the next time, not sure which direction the dragon was going with its neck swaying all over. Then I simply stabbed it again.
Then it happened again. The tiny dragon used its breath weapon to superheat the water and spray it in my face again. I pushed up at its head and neck with my empty left hand when I saw it open its mouth wide and most of the steam missed me this time. Then I stabbed it with the bayonet in my right.
The dragon fell limp. I pulled the sea-knife and went to slice its tiny neck. So tiny was the neck of the dragon and so sharp the blade that I took the dragons head clean off. I noticed an inky blackness like black seaweed between the wings on the back on the tiny dragon. I pulled its claws carefully out of my armor. After all, the armor was new still and it had cost me a lot. I let the body fall backward. Making an X across the chest of the tiny dragon was an oversized thing made of black seaweed. I saw ties in its center and carefully undid them. I unwound the black seaweed revealing a bandolier able to hold eight potion bottles. Right now it held five. The way it was wrapped around the tiny body as well as the extra bulk of the potions had made it difficult to identify.
I pulled the potions out and spread them out evenly around me in a circle. Then I tied the bandolier across my chest and over my left shoulder.
I closed my eyes and took a deep breath. Then I opened my mental senses. Once per day I could use these senses to detect magic. Anything more than that and I would end up with a blinding headache. If I used the sense for any longer than a minute I ended up with the same result. All of the potions has magical auras, this was a given. All of their magical auras were fain, a given again. Four had auras of the same color but a fifth was different.
I started with the different one. It had the same aura as my wand of healing. The same aura as the potion of healing that I had drunk during the battle with the dragon. It was another healing potion. I would drink it once I had identified the other four.
The other four were the same. A yellow color meaning a form of divination. Yet the potion within was black as ink but with a slight, metallic shimmer. I poured one of the potions in my hand and then rubbed it onto the dead dragon. Nothing happened.
I put the three remaining potions into the bandolier. I could have someone else identify them for me and tell me how to use them at a later date. I spent the rest of the night skinning and butchering the tiny dragon.