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Despite what everyone had said, killing the dragon was by far not the hardest part.

A basic set of conjuration spells, a good pre-era sword (thank you, Grandpa) and a few tips from the on-duty castle magician had done that. What they should write about in the books is how impossible it is to get the damned head all the way to the capital. Now that’s a battle.

Now, I’m no idiot. Oh, no. I remember how the elf tutor my father had hired kept praising me for learning all of the sword dances in one go. He kept saying I was a “jewel”. All the ladies said so, too… Anyway, despite all my efforts and attempts to recall the textbooks, I could not remember anything about the head-carrying part.

The problem was it was too heavy to be tied casually to the saddle like in all those paintings my sisters like so much. I had to put together a pathetic parody of a carriage just to get it moving, and that kept falling apart every five yards. I had to change three horses on the five-day journey, that’s how heavy it was. And Feather spells were useless. Stupid dragons and their stupid enchanted heads.

I lucked out though, there were some bandits on the way with a nice new carriage they stole. It was still too small and the horns kept getting stuck in the branches, but at least I could go into the city with some grace. I can’t tell you how much I hated to gods-damned Queen and her bloody whims during those five days. When she got up to greet me in the throne room I almost threw a tantrum, but was too tired. I stopped hating the next day her when she granted me an early retirement and my own manor in the city, servants included.

The head is now in the middle of the castle hall, covered with a healthy layer of gold and sapphires, the horns polished regularly.

Needless to say, I still shudder every time I have to pass it.

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