Barva cracked his shell and emerged into the chilly, inky wetness.
No air! No breath!
He thrust towards a glow of light and hit a soft barrier. He frantically clawed at it until it burst, and he poured out into the world.
Barva gasped in air as he struggled to his wobbly legs.
His mind flowed with old memories. Memories from his dead mother. Memories that filled him with knowledge. He learned and understood the Dragon language, Dratak.
Barva looked back at his mother. The cavern’s firelight glistened off the mangled corpse of the platinum Dragon.
Barva knew he was an unusual Dragon, for he recalled most Dragons weren’t born with their dead mother’s memories. He saw a memory of other Dragons being gestated for years, laid, then left alone before hatching. Dragons are born strong and self-reliable, there is no mother present upon hatching… dead or alive.
He was only three years old and born prematurely for a typical Dragon. Barva knew the identity of his mother, also odd for a Dragon.
He saw a memory of his mother using chaotic magic to ensure his early hatching and survival. Then she lost her life at the claws of a fierce looking, black female Dragon, half her size. Barva clung to that memory, discerning every detail of the killer, so he might avenge his mother.
His mother’s name was Gianki, and she had been the Pack’s shaman.
In another flash of memory, he saw a secret room of the cavern, where he would find memory eggs, called edubas, made by his mother and the Pack’s earlier shamans. The edubas allowed their own memories, or saved memories from others, to be shared with any other Dragon who could touch and access the magic sealing them.
He discovered another memory with the secret words he needed to speak to access those edubas. He perceived which edubas he would need to steal and hide so that only he would know many of the secret passages and caverns inside this mountain.
He recalled yet another memory where his mother had made a hidden lair within the mountain specifically for him to live and grow. He realized he now had access to his own horde of edubas which she had painstakingly copied from the room for the shamans.
Barva saw in a flash of a warning memory that he would need to hide from all other Dragons until he was a little more mature and could protect himself. The world outside the mountain was called Anki and it was a harsh place of chaos and despair. A world of primal strength and ancient magic. A world of hunters and prey. He was lucky to be born a hunter.
As the rush of memories began to subside, Barva realized he was predestined to do remarkable things.
He gave thanks to his dead mother. A mother he wasn’t supposed to even know or recognize if he’d hatched like a normal Dragon.