Immediately, Emeralda stood beside her and touched her forehead with her horn. “I’m sorry.” Her voice sang in Melissa’s heart, and a fog clouded her thoughts. Muffled, she heard the mare scold the little stallion.
“You can not cure wounds of the soul without consent, boy. That could have ended deadly.”
Melissa did not hear more. She slept.
When she woke, stars sparkled in a clear sky. A shadow bent over her.
The dragon grumbled.”Finally. My rumbling stomach should have woken you long ago. Can we fly on now?”
“What happened?” Melissa sat up.
“My son tried to heal you because you seemed unhappy to him”, Emeralda said. “He did not know that injuries of the soul can be very dangerous. I apologize.”
Melissa frowned. “My soul isn’t injured.”
“As long as you aren’t ready to search your soul, we can only heal your physical wounds.” The mare touched the prince’s forehead with her horn, and the scratch on his cheek healed without a scar.
Melissa examined her own body and marveled. “He has healed the inflamed cut in the sole of my foot. And the sunburn! Thank you so much.”
The mare rubbed her nostrils on Melissa’s cheek. The touch of the velvety soft fur calmed Melissa. Inexplicably, she felt comforted and strengthened.The mare snorted gently. “If you need us, we will always be here for you. It has made us happy to sing with you.” She neighed, reared, turned round in an elegant Pirouette and disappeared in the wood with only two leaps.
Only now, Melissa noticed that the other unicorns had gone. “I feel like newly born”, she said.
The dragon looked at her. His voice sounded tender. “I owe much to Emeralda. She has always taken care of my wounds. Unicorns are born healers.” He looked up to the sky. “We should get a move on. Soon, it will be bright sunlight, and I don’t want to be seen by more people than absolutely necessary.”
Melissa followed his gaze and noticed, that the storm had let off. The sky had lost his inky blackness. A couple of stars still sparkled in the ever brighter blue. No cloud could be seen. It would become a sunny day.
“I am also reluctant to be seen in this.” The prince pointed to his ruined dress. “You can set down in the orchard.”
“Orchard sounds fine to me”, the dragon said. “Well, what are we waiting for? Some fruits will surely be ripe.” He lowered the nape of his neck so that Melissa and the prince could climb him more easily. A little later, they flew into the fiery red of the dawn with the rising sun in their backs.
When Lysande came to herself, her arms and her left shoulder were sore. Her legs also felt numb. It took her a while to understand that it was due to the uncomfortable position in which she had spent the night. Her first conscious look went to the window. The raising sun’s golden light fell through the panes and dabbed bright patterns on the rug.
When Lysande sat up, her legs tingled as if stung by a thousand needles. On hands and knees, she crawled to the bed, sat on it and started to massage her legs. At this moment, someone knocked.
Without waiting for an answer, king Gregor entered the room. He wore the same clothes as the day before and seemed tired. With surprise, Lysande noticed that he had rings under his eyes.
“Have you found my boy”, he asked without greeting.
Lysande could not bring herself to tell him about his son’s death. She tried to avoid the unavoidable. Bravely, she ignored the pain in her legs, got up and curtsied as instructed. “Good morning, Your Majesty.”
“I want to know where he is.”
The door slammed against the wall, and the secretary burst in. Sweat dripped from his hair and forehead. Lysande was sure that he had never run so fast before.
He fought for air. “A dragon has just landed in the orchard. On his back …”
King Gregor ran off without letting him finish. Lysande’s heart cramped. As fast as she could, she followed her brother. One thought dominated her mind. What if she survived the storm? Forgotten were her numb legs. If she has survived, she is more powerful than I am. What can I do? Mother of all magical worlds, help us!