Magnus stepped into the quaint Chinese restaurant after the sound of a jingling bell informed the workers that a customer stepped in. An elderly Chinese woman walked out of a stainless steel swinging door that led to the kitchen. The thin lines around her lips seemed to pull her mouth up into a smile for her new customer, but she stopped when she saw the short round man wearing a heavy brown trenchcoat.
“You’re not a member of this Flight. What business have you?” The woman asked in a tone that Magnus understood to mean, “don’t lie.”
“Hunters have come to the city,” Magnus said with an obvious tremble in his voice. He took a step towards the counter, but the woman’s stern look encouraged him to step back again.
“I know,” she said. Magnus felt like an idiot, of course she knew. “My Flight has nothing to fear. We keep to ourselves and stay in human form. It’s a wonderful city, after all, I’m sure they’re just passing through,” she said. She waved him off, then turned her back to walk into the kitchen.
“Asylum, please.” Magnus fell to his knees with his hands clasped, and tears “I beg of you, my Queen.” The woman stopped in her tracks, then turned to face the man.
“Your Queen?” She scoffed then walked around the service counter to the kneeling, sobbing man. “YOUR Queen?” she hissed. “You dare to suggest you are worthy of joining my Flight?” The woman’s sharp voice summoned a burly cook with dragons tattooed up his arms from the back. He walked through the swinging door holding two large cleavers. The woman waved him away without turning around; he disappeared back into the kitchen.
“No! I only meant I would do anything to serve you, please. I need asylum.” He prostrated himself completely, forehead against the wooden floor. The woman appraised him; her eyes narrowed.
“Why?” After a moment of silence, she lifted her spindly leg and stomped on his head, but the man did not dare to move. She repeated the action, and Magnus stayed as still as he could manage while enduring the beating. “YOU’VE BEEN IN DRAGON FORM!!”
“I’M SORRY!!!! I’M NOT A BIG ONE!” he cried. To illustrate his point Magnus’s body morphed into his tiny, pony-sized dragon form in the restaurant. Short, stubby, green wings tore through his brown trenchcoat. His neck elongated only slightly and grew very thick. Magnus’ face stretched and grew into a chubby dragon’s snout with green iridescent scales. The tip of a docked tail poked out from the bottom of the trenchcoat. The woman continued to beat him.
“You idiot! You’re not even trying to hide your magical aura! TAKERU!” she shouted. The burly cook burst through the door then slid across the counter like the hood of a car. In a second he knelt in front of the woman.
“Ms. Chang?” he asked, ready to do her bidding.
“Take this idiot outside and make a scene,” she said. Takeru nodded his head, then stood. Magnus began changing back into his human form.
“Takeru,” the woman said softly. One of the dragons on his right arm began to glow with green light. He reached down and touched the, now, man on the back. Immediately his green wings sprouted again, and he changed into a dragon.
“What are you doing??” he asked.
“You put my Flight in danger. I’m giving the hunters what they came for.”