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Bits and Bites


I wrote this piece for Dr. John’s dragon story contest. It didn’t win (Margaret’s did), but I thought you might enjoy it just the same.

I’m a school teacher well respected in my community and not given to flights of fancy, but I swear, my newest student, Jimmy, is a dragon. I saw him change the other day. It was nearing lunchtime. He said he was very, very hungry and he had to eat. He said if he didn’t eat, something bad would happen. I reminded him that recess was in 20 minutes, and lunch would be right after. He insisted that he’d never make it. Of course, I thought he was exaggerating.

About 15 minutes later I told the students to finish up their math and get ready for recess. They tidied their desks and lined up at the door. Jimmy was in the back of the line. Tulie, our classroom bully, was right in front of Jimmy. I signaled the student line leader to open the door and told everyone to walk to the playground. As they filed out, the air around Jimmy started to shimmer. In the blink of an eye he transformed into a huge, yellow-bellied, grayish-green dragon. In the next instant, with a glup and a burp, he swallowed Tulie.

Almost immediately Jimmy was Jimmy again and the dragon was gone. Tulie was gone as well. He has never been seen again. There is an amber alert out for Tulie and his picture is being circulated far and wide, yet I predict he will never be found. I would tell the police what I saw, but I am afraid they’d never believe me and my career would suffer. Besides, the classroom is rather pleasant now that Tulie is gone, and I owe Jimmy a good turn for getting rid of him. Of course, to keep Jimmy from eating anyone else, I keep plenty of classroom snacks on hand, and Jimmy gets the dragon’s share of them.


Magic Bites, that is. The Ilona Andrews novel has risen to #15 on the Barnes and Noble Science Fiction & Fantasy best-sellers list. Have you purchased your copy yet? They are hopping off the shelves right and left.

Quilly is the pseudonym of Charlene L. Amsden, who lives on The Big Island in Hawaii. When she is not hanging out with Amoeba, she is likely teaching or sewing. Or she could be cooking, taking photographs, or even writing. But if she's not doing any of that, she's probably on Facebook or tinkering with her blog.


  1. That was good. I was on vacation last week so I am just now getting caught up on your blog. Hope I didn’t miss anything too exciting. Sorry you had to say goodbye once again to OC. Hope those times are almost near an end.

  2. Angela — you missed a lot of exciting stuff — but the good news is, it’s all still right here in the archives. Take your time looking it up — don’t don’t forget to check out, The Grownups Wanted Us Dead, and OC’s purdy pink toenails.

    Silver — thanks. I think it didn’t win because they were appalled at the teacher’s reaction to Jimmy eating Tulie. Go figure.

    Melli — I suppose even dragons have the occasional health issue.

  3. I really liked that story. I like any story where a child kills another child, but this one was particularly well told.

  4. Interesting fantasy for ridding the classroom of a troublesome child. My daughter always envisions an alien spacecraft that beams the kid up.

  5. This is the kind of story that I’d have totally gotten in trouble for writing when I was a kid. My teachers had no sense of humor. Or imagination.

  6. Kat — I suppose a spaceship would be more approriate for Nevada’s Area 51, but Dr. John was having a DRAGON STORY contest.

    Diesel — in my class you would have been a featured star. Two years ago, Halloween, one of my students wrote a gory story where every kid in the class — and myself — were murdered in a haunted lumber yard, some of us died quite horribly. I not only gave the student an A, he read the story, serial fashion, on our televised morning broadcast everyday of Halloween week and the entire school enjoyed it. His grade was based on his writing skill, not the story’s content.

  7. As the countless bumper stickers and t-shirts that have ripped off Tolkein say, “Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with catsup.”

    It sounds like Tulie may have been crunchier than most. lol

  8. Polona — if real-life dragons were like that, they would probably eat teachers, not misbehaving children.

    Brig — come to think of it, Jimmy was probably the only pupil who — uh, liked Tulie. 🙂

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