'I didn't know I was the last Dragonslayer then.'
'That's your your story.' story.'
'Events have moved on,' I told them. They looked me up and down.
'Kind of young for a Dragonslayer?' said Norton finally.
I stared back at him.
'Perhaps you'd tell me what's going on?'
'We found the claw marks in the cab.'
He beckoned me to follow, and we walked towards where a large ConStuff truck was lying upended in a field. It had been completely gutted by fire, and the water used to extinguish the flames had run down the field and flooded the road with mud. Norton pointed. On the bodywork, just below the roofline, were two large grooved holes, as though something very ma.s.sive and very strong had simply squeezed it.
'Vandals?' I asked, somewhat dubiously.
Detective Norton stared at me as though I were an imbecile.
'Talons, Miss Strange, talons talons. This van was taken from Gloucester last night and turns up here. When the fire services arrived they were positive there were no wheel tracks; if you look here...'
He indicated an area of damage to the rear of the truck, which had been heavily stoved in the back axle had almost been torn off.
'It looks as though the truck was dropped from a great height.'
'So what are you saying?' I asked him.
'You tell me, Miss Dragonslayer. Looks as though Maltca.s.sion picked up this van, tried to fly with it back to the Dragonlands but dropped it on the way. To try and disguise the crime, he torched it.'
'A truck hardly counts as livestock, does it?'
'A technicality. The Dragonpact cites damage to property property as a punishable offence. I think what we've got here is a rogue Dragon.' as a punishable offence. I think what we've got here is a rogue Dragon.'
'That's sort of far fetched,' I said, trying to play the incident down. It was a serious accusation. A rogue Dragon was a Dragon out of control; one that had transgressed the rules of the Dragonpact. Such a Dragon could legally be destroyed. That's the trouble with premonitions; they have an annoying habit of coming true.
'Did anyone see it?'
Norton looked at his feet.
'Anyone hear anything, see it being flown out here?'
'Then by the rules of the Dragonpact I'm going to have to see at least two other uncorroborated incidents of Dragonattack before I can even consider this a rogue Dragon.'
Norton rounded on me angrily.
'It's pretty clear cut-!'
'Then you you punish him, Norton,' I responded. 'I'm going to need to see better evidence than this.' punish him, Norton,' I responded. 'I'm going to need to see better evidence than this.'
I left Norton, lifted the 'do not cross' tape and was instantly a.s.sailed by a wall of journalists.
'Was this an attack by a
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