Flash Fiction Friday: The Mouse and the Dragon

Long, long ago in a great cave high in the mountains a mouse and a dragon played poker. The mouse was quite a little mouse but brave, as mice count such things. He had traveled far and wide in his youth, from the country to the town and back again. He had gone on many adventures, or at the very least appeared in the background during the adventures of others, usually clumsy humans with far too much time on their hands, and not nearly enough cheese. And now he found himself, entirely by chance, perched upon a rock desperately trying to clutch five cards in his little paws, and having the time of his life. Of course, it was entirely possible that his life would only last as long as this next hand. The mouse was, after all, playing for his very survival.

“I call.” The dragon’s voice came rumbling from above. With its great talons it threw down what appeared to be a rib and a clavicle. They landed with a clatter atop of a pile of bones in the center. They were using discarded bones for chips. Clearly a primitive attempt at intimidation, but the mouse was not afraid. One of its left whiskers started to twitch.

This was the moment of truth. There was no backing out now. No room for error. The mouse had once safely braved the terrors of a cleaver wielded by a particularly vicious farmer’s wife. He had fought off seasickness as a one legged-pirate plotted mutiny and murder not ten feet away. None of those could match the danger of this moment, but the mouse was determined to face it with the same stalwart daring as everything else. One of its right whiskers started to twitch. He began slowly and with comical determination to push his last chips, a femur and phalanges, into the pot.

“All in,” said the mouse.

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