On Earth there are many different types of people and many species of animals. Wouldn't it be the same elsewhere? To get inspiration, I combed the internet for dragon images. Then, as my imagination went into drive, I developed a variety of dragons and their personalities.
My favorite dragon is the Klimbanan-Swimman, a smaller brown dragon with dark brown rings around him and white tufts of fur on his head. Klimbanan-Swimman means climber-swimmer and they're very agile, swift, and highly intelligent.
In The Lone Hero, I introduced readers to Shuma, his mate Tsama, and Zeemsa.
Klimbanan-Swimman have certain characteristics. For one thing, they don't think humans are very intelligent.
Here is when Pietro meets Tsazo and Tzuzutz:
“I’ll send a runner to you if I do,” said Pietro.
“His runner is heading your way,” said Zavat.
Pietro smirked. “You don’t hide communing with your long lost relative so well. What’s the problem?”
Tsazo peeked his head in from the doorway.
“Mio Dio, it’s the same lizard from the desert and the mountains.”
“No need to be afraid, superstitious dumb-dumb,” said Tsazo. “Hut-dwellers are slow thinkers, I know. I’m not a lizard, dim-witted biped, I’m a dragon.”
Pietro chuckled. “He talks too? He insults me while being nice? Is this true that he’s a dragon?”
Tsazo scurried onto the bed and under the covers. “How are your legs?” He scampered up and down them while he pushed and nipped. He pulled and pushed on Pietro’s toes. “Do you feel this? Does it hurt? What about now?”
“What are you doing, little one? Get out of my covers.” Pietro tugged on him and Tsazo re-appeared and sat on Pietro’s chest.
“You’re heavy for a lizard.”
“I’m not a lizard, slow-minded hut-dweller.” He leaned and patted Pietro’s cheek. “Nice human. Nice boy. Good nipper. I’ll explain in simple terms so you understand. There are many kinds of dragons.”
Laurence explained. “This dragon’s a Klimbanan-Swimman and he’s young. It means climber-and-swimmer because they’re good at both. They’re small, agile, and clever and they think humans are dimwitted.”
“I understand that point already,” said Pietro.
“I’m to be your runner.” Tsazo proudly pointed to his chest, “and in case you need two, my younger sister will help.” Tsazo called out, “Tzuzutz.”
A smaller brown dragon crept around the doorframe. She had several tufts of white hair about her head, more than most Klimbanan-Swimmans, and tiny dark brown rings about her body.
“This is my sister, Tzuzutz. I call her Fuzzy because of the furry bunches on her head. She came to meet the Lone Hero.”
“What’s a lone hero?” asked Pietro.
“Why, the famous hut-dweller, the dragons’ greatest hero, of course, and a biped even.” Tsazo pointed at Laurence.
Tzuzutz walked to Laurence and bowed respectfully. She swayed as she spoke timidly. “Mi patér and mi grand-parents talk often of you, Lone Hero. Tsazo and I go to your burial chambers regularly. We help keep it clean with Zeemsa. I read your legends all the time and listen to Zeemsa’s stories about you.” She shyly put her claw in her mouth and shuffled her feet.
Laurence knelt on one knee and patted his other knee. Tzuzutz jumped up and sat down. He took her paw and kissed it and she giggled.
“Ooh, curls.” She fluffed his hair. “Lots of them.”
He removed her claws from his locks and kissed her paw again. She tittered. “I’m not permitted to remember much about my past life, but I’ll say this. Both of you resemble your grand-parents, whom I remember well and love, and I’m glad you keep the fortress clean.”
“Very clean,” she said, nodding yes.
“Very clean,” repeated Laurence with a smile.
Tzuzutz cupped a hand near her mouth. “Tsazo helps because of Zeemsa. Whenever he’s near her he looks like this.” She clasped her hands to her chest, leaned in towards Laurence, opened her eyes wide, fluttered her lashes, and sighed.
“I do not,” said Tsazo, embarrassed.
“Do too,” she replied. “You favor Zeemsa.”
“H’m,” said Laurence. “Zeemsa’s like a daughter, er, dhugheter to me. Maybe I should be concerned.”
Tzuzutz giggled and jumped off his knee. She ran around the walls and up onto the bed then settled down next to héré bhrater who nipped at her.
“You love these dragons, I see this. They adore you and you’re a hero to them because you’re saving them?” asked Pietro.
Tsazo interrupted his sister. “No, Tzuzutz. Lord Zavat doesn’t allow us to say.” He bit her.
“Ow. I know, but I want to tell the poor sickly human. Our stories might cheer him. Laurence was the Lone―”
Tsazo bit harder.
“No biting in my bedroom,” warned Pietro.
“That’s how Klimbanan-Swimmans train each other,” said Laurence.
“Not in my room. Taddeo was a biter. I still bear marks. So, your horse has a name and a title. Lord Zavat. Does it mean anything?”
“It means big troublemaker,” replied Laurence.
Tsazo and Tzuzutz doubled over while they emitted their high pitched squeals of laughter and Zavat whinnied.
Pietro scrutinized his cousin then turned to his two guests. “I’ll allow you to visit and to be runners, but you mustn’t let anyone see or hear you. When we’re alone at night, I’ll tell you stories about me and you whisper your secrets to me.”
Both Klimbanan-Swimmans looked at Laurence, who shook his head ‘no.’
“We’ll see,” said Pietro.
“We’ll see,” agreed Tzuzutz. “Can we have warm fires every night?” She tucked his blankets tighter around him.
“You’re my guests, so of course.”
“And fruits and nuts?” asked Tsazo.
“As much as you want, if you don’t bite.”
“We’d never bite you hard,” said Tsazo. Tzuzutz agreed.
“They’ll keep me good company and I may learn some little known facts about you, Cousin,” said Pietro.Laurence gave the Klimbanan-Swimmans a warning look.
Will they tell too much? It's in their nature to talk alot.
Love, Honor, and Respect to all.