I would like to dedicate this story to Hidilyn Diaz.
Sorry if the ending is somehow less than happy…
There was once a halfling woman by the name of Hilda who dreamed of becoming a heroine to her people. She wanted to bring honor and glory to herself and her family and thought that the best way to do so was to slay an evil silver dragon named Olympus that roosted in a mountain not far from her village. Unfortunately, she knew that the task would be far from easy and she had many disadvantages to consider. For one thing she was a small and weak halfling while Olympus was the size of a house and very powerful. She had lived most of her life (which amounted to just two and a half decades) in her small village and knew little of the ways of the world while Olympus was positively ancient, being almost as old as the Earth itself and having flown to its many corners. Olympus dwelt within a mighty citadel atop the mountain and was covered in tough scales that were almost like stone in their durability but all Hilda had were her nimble but tiny hands.
However, Hilda dreamed big and she always believed that with the right attitude and a lot of hard-work, she could best Olympus one day. So she bade farewell to her family in order to begin her quest to slay Olympus the silver dragon.
“My people will help me!” She thought. “I will go to the priest for help!”
So she went to the village priest in the church to ask for help. She needed to better understand the anatomy and behavior of dragons in order to gain an advantage over the silver dragon. Hilda knew that the priest kept many books in his church and thought that he at least had one book that could help her find a way to kill Olympus.
However, when she finally met the village priest and told him her story, he laughed in her face.
“You?” laughed the priest. “You will kill Olympus the silver dragon? Ha, I’ve never heard anything sillier! I cannot help fools like you! I hope Olympus burns you alive so we’ll have less idiots like you in our village!”
The priest slammed the door in Hilda’s face and continued laughing.
Hilda wept outside the church not knowing what to do.
But then a wise elf came and took pity on her.
“I cannot help you directly, for I am in a hurry to the kobold town not far from here.” the elf said to her. “But I can give you some books I have that will teach you about the weaknesses of dragons.”
Hilda thanked the elf and went on her way.
“My people will help me!” Hilda thought again. “I will go to the merchant’s guild for help!”
So she went to the merchant’s guild in the market for help. She needed a weapon that could help her kill Olympus the silver dragon as the latter was too strong for her to take on directly. She hoped that she could at least get some money to buy a decent spear or sword that could penetrate the Olympus’ thick hide.
When she spoke to the merchant’s guild however, they laughed in her face.
“You?” laughed the merchant’s guild. “You will kill Olympus the silver dragon? Ha, We’ve never heard anything sillier! We cannot help fools like you! We hope Olympus eats you alive so we’ll have less idiots like you in our village!”
The merchant’s guild slammed the door in her face and continued laughing and joking about her.
Hilda moped in the marketplace not knowing what to do next.
But then a group of dwarf warriors saw her and took pity on her.
“We cannot help you directly,” said the dwarves. “For we have been hired by a tribe of ogres to accompany them to a meeting with some orcs. But we can give you materials to make your own weapon since we have a surplus of supplies with us.”
Hilda thanked the dwarves and went on her way.
“My people will help me!” Hilda thought again. “I will go to the mayor for help!”
So she went to the mayor’s office for help. Knowing that she was weak, Hilda wanted to find a way to counter Olympus’ fire breath and natural weapons. Perhaps the mayor would lend her a hand in finding some decent equipment.
When she spoke to the mayor however, the mayor laughed in her face.
“You?” laughed the mayor. “You will kill Olympus the silver dragon? Ha, I’ve never heard anything sillier! We cannot help fools like you! I hope Olympus eats your soul so we’ll have less idiots like you in our village!”
The mayor slammed the door in her face and continued laughing.
Hilda despaired wondering what else she could do.
But then an old human woman saw her and decided to help.
“I am an old woman and cannot really help much,” said the woman. “But there is a cave not far from here where my son hid his armor which could resist dragon fire. The way in is dangerous, but if you’re careful, I’m sure you can get it.”
Hilda thanked the old human woman and went on her way.
First, she went on to get the armor worn by the old human woman’s son. The cave it was hidden in was very dark and dangerous and Hilda had to be extremely careful in the effort. However, thanks to her nimbleness as a halfling, she was able to retrieve the armor in little more than a few hours and was relieved when he saw the light of the sun shining on her face coming from the cave entrance.
Next, she began forging the materials given to her by the dwarves into a weapon. It took her many days and nights to finish it but she nonetheless turned the raw materials into a serviceable arm. She had forged for herself a short sword which, while not terribly large, she could nonetheless wield properly.
Last, she studied the lore and nature of dragons to better understand how to slay them. It took her weeks to better understand the words written in the elf’s books and commit them to memory. Eventually though, she learned enough to know how to kill Olympus the silver dragon.
So off Hilda went to finally face Olympus and kill him.
With her armor in place, sword in hand and knowledge in her head, she went up to Olympus’ citadel and challenged the silver dragon to battle. It is written in the culture of dragons after all that they could never refuse challenges to their authority. They would have to fight lest they be the laughing stock of their fellow dragons.
The battle was swift and terrible with Olympus belching fire at Hilda and clawing at her with his enormous talons. Luckily, Hilda’s armor (the one she got from the cave) held and protected her from the worst of it. While the dragon’s fire burned her, it was only like being scalded with a candle for her rather than being burnt to a crisp.
The sword also proved its worth when Hilda managed to sever one of Olympus claws with a single swing. Then she mounted the dragon and cut off its wings to prevent its escape. She delivered the killing blow by running up the dragon’s neck and finally driving her sword into the top of its skull.
Olympus fell to the ground dead and from out of nowhere a crowd cheered for Hilda’s victory. Apparently, she wasn’t the only one who wanted to hunt and kill Olympus the silver dragon. As it turns out, hopefuls from other races, both men and fae sought to bring down the silver dragon but to no avail. The honor of killing Olympus belonged to Hilda and Hilda alone and the cheering crowd of humans and fae came to announce that.
She was carried on the shoulders of a mighty human knight and elves and goblins prepared for her a vast feast.
But then, other halflings, namely the priest, the merchant’s guild and the mayor came crashing into the party, declaring that since Hilda was a halfling like them, they too deserved to be honored. The men and fae gathered at the event could only shake their heads in disgust for they could do little about the credit-grabbing of the other halflings.
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