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Blake, on choosing dragons

DSCF3303aPass the bottle, Davie, and let’s not talk about the girl. It’s been too long since we had a night for this, a night to not quite talk shop, a night for dragons.

Isn’t that what you signed up for, Davie? Isn’t it what we all signed up for, slaying dragons? Only I think perhaps you chose yours better than I chose mine. I know you chose a Hydra. I know you’ll never be done with hacking off heads – it’s human nature you’re fighting. But at least I’m sure you chose a monster.

Me? I know everyone thinks I got out because of Elisabeth. She was a handy excuse, and you can imagine how many sleepless nights I’ve given myself over letting myself think of her that way, but Hal knew, I think, all along. He had to pull a lot of favours to get me out, but the Service would have got a pretty raw deal if I’d stayed. You can’t fight a thing you don’t know, that’s the nub of it, and once you do know it, well what if it’s no dragon after all?

You remember Reilly, of course? Used to get fighting drunk about twice a term; one or other of us must have been the one to sit on him a dozen times. You don’t kick a man like Reilly when the fit has him, you put him down as gently as you can, and wait for it to pass. That’s how I’d started to see it, a rather grubby fight that left the wrong people hurt. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe it was never the right Service for me.

But I shan’t be sorry if you give my girl your Hydra to fight, in place of Hal’s dragons.

The girl? Kathryn Blake, who else? If Philip Blake can be induced to talk about his daughter, then Davie McAllister is the man to do it. Gauge his success in Find the Lady, available from Smashwords in all major ebook formats.


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