-And where is that dragon, old man?
-Nearby… Hermit just smiled.
-Well, how near?… The young knight was determined to know.
-Nearer than you think. I can feel his roars and the fire in his belly is heating up.
-For God’s sake, will you tell me?! Why are you doing this to me? I’ve been very kind to you, I have shared my food and water with you, me –the noble one- with you –peasant and wanderer! Do you want me to share my sword with you as well? I promise, you will get the better end of it!
And the knight put his hand on the handle of the sword, while his eyes were blazing in rage. The words he spoke were full of disappointment.
-Do you hear me old man?! Are you deaf in your blindness?
-Yes, I hear you, and the dragon can hear you too. You are a noble man on a noble quest?
-Yes,I am!… The knight proudly stated.
-And you want to slay the dragon because of his evil and wrongdoings?
-Yes, that is why I am here!
-And you want me to help you find the dragon?
-I told you a thousand times! Everyone in this stinking kingdom swears that you are the wisest man around, the one who knows everything!
-And I do!
-I‘ll kill you! You are provoking me! You are a fool and you will not fool anyone again!
Filled with arrogance and bitterness, the young knight took his sword out to strike the hermit.
-Wait! Before you kill me, tell me what I have done wrong!
-You?! From dawn to this hour, you have been torturing me with your questions and stories! You don’t want to give me just one simple answer! And you said you knew it and that you would help me!
-That is why I shall kill you! If I cannot find a dragon to slaughter, I will slaughter you!
-You are a dragon also, maybe even the one I am looking for! I heard that dragons have magical powers to transform into whatever they wish!
The Knight was standing, tightly gripping the sword. His breathing was fast, his nostrils were wide-spread, cheeks red, and every hair on his body was standing up. The temperature gave the heat to the sweat and the smell arose from him into the air.
The Hermit was calm, sitting under the tree with his eyes gazing in peace.
-And you say… You want to kill… You want to slaughter… Doesn’t that sound kind of evil to you, boy?
-Fire in your stomach…Tell me, is it burning like hell? Like a flame from a pit of despair?
-Your nose carries winds and sulphur is on the top of your tongue. You smell like an animal and you yell like a savage.
-I’ve given you your answer very fast, but unfortunately you didn’t understand me because your monkey brain is nothing but dragon’s food.
-Put your toothpick away! If I getup, dragon boy, you will fly like a dragonfly all the way down the hill! Do you understand me, boy?
The young knight stood stoned and frozen, with his mouth half-open, confused and surprisingly scared. He let go of the grip and the sword slipped away from his hand. Slowly, he knelt and started to cry like a child.
-Do you see the dragon, oh, great knight?
-Yes,I see him, master.
-Good, don’t let him get away.