'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Friday 16 May 2014

KBR Short Story: Gem Breeder Dragons

by Melanie Hill

“Amazing,” said The Professor. She turned the cool, sparkling egg in her hands. Her eyes twinkled despite her stern face.

Reading her thoughts, Sammy said, “It doesn’t belong in a museum.”

“I’ll be the judge of that. Where did you find this?”

Sammy knew The Professor expected a scientific explanation. “I can’t tell you,” he said, tracing the outline of the kitchen tiles with his feet.

“I see…Where are Gran and Oscar?”

“They went for a walk.”


“Jeezz Mum, I don’t know!” he said. The Professor locked eyes on him.

“What makes these dragons different?”

“They only eat sapphires and diamonds.” Why couldn’t he make stuff up? Once, he saw Gran tell a bold face lie to his Mum without pausing. Gran even winked at him while she did it.

“How do they find sapphires and diamonds?” The Professor said, and held up her hand. Her rings were empty!

“They sniff them out,” he said.

“I see. Habitat?”

“Near mines.” Sammy wiped the sweat from his brow.


“They breathe out gem dust that forms into eggs. The hatchlings eat their shells, it gives them energy.” His hands slapped over his mouth. He couldn’t stop himself!

“What else?” The Professor asked.

“They have amber claws that can scratch through anything.” Sammy needed a diversion. Where were Oscar and Gran?

His bedroom door rattled. He heard a faint scratch. Not that diversion.

The Professor placed the egg back in the basket of winter clothes.

A loud crash and bang made them jump. Gran and Oscar pushed against each other as they bustled through the door. Both wore field gear and carried nets. Their smiles withered when they saw The Professor standing next to the basket.

Gran stepped forward, “Luv, I can explain…”

Light flashed. Something shattered. They hit the ground. Bits of the boys’ bedroom door landed in the lounge room. Out strode a dazzling white dragon. He perused the damage and smiled. Sammy and Oscar flinched when the dragon nuzzled them with his ice-cold nose.

Sammy stood up. He stroked the dragon’s hard, smooth scales. “Ah, Mum…this is Cutta. He’s a Gem Breeder Dragon.”

Cutta bowed. “Professor, I am delighted to meet you. Sammy tells me you are an authority on minerals. I love pink sapphires – so juicy and sweet. When I return, we could chat over a sparkling mineral water?” The Professor nodded; her eyes wide and mouth open.

Cutta turned towards Gran, who was still on the floor, and said, “Thank you for your hospitality Gladys. Lattice is in good hands. No Museums, you promised.”

With that, Cutta walked out of the house. He stretched his brilliant wings, took two strides and leapt into the air.

Sammy and Oscar helped Gran and The Professor up.

“You just let him fly away…?” said The Professor.

The egg rattled and crackled. Gran, Oscar and Sammy looked at one another and smiled. A tiny blue head popped out of the egg.

Melanie lives in Brisbane with her husband and four children. Writing took a back seat to work and travel for twenty years. However, her children reminded her of the joy of storytelling when she started to record the funny things they said and did. These four small bodies with their enormous imaginations have drawn her back into the world of dragons, time travel, questing, zombies, fairies and all things in between. For more information, visit Melanie on Facebook or LinkedIn.

KBR Short Stories are a way to get your work ‘out there’—and to delight our KBR readers. Stories are set to a monthly theme and entries are due in the 25th of each month. Find out more here.