Dragons of any sort have fascinated people for centuries. This picture was actually from an advert prior to World War I, calling young men to battle. The foe was depicted as a dragon.
In Consort, dragons are both friends and foes.
Fire Daemons were so named because of their lethal flame and unpredictable temperament. They are the only type of dragon in the history of the Mio Pilamùr to never have been tamed by man. Fire Daemons are also one of the smaller variety of dragons. They are only the height of two grown men, and their wingspan is the length of three. Considering that some dragons can be as tall as the turret of a high-reaching palace, Fire Daemons might not sound very impressive. But Fire Daemons have two unique gifts: their eyes and voice can hypnotize their prey, and their flame is both highly explosive and repugnant to other dragons. While many dragons are not harmed by fire, they are still susceptible to the flame of the Fire Daemon.
This sets the Fire Daemon apart. As a Fire Daemon grows older and becomes more experienced, it is capable of blowing up a stone wall with a couple of explosive sparks, or nearly suffocating another dragon with its flames. The hypnotic powers are present from infancy.
Eil hatched from an egg that Sherwin found in the Cursed Woods when he was fifteen. Sherwin buried the egg at an old campsite and dug it up at age seventeen, in book five. And that was when Eil chose to hatch.
All dragons have the power of speech, but few speak to people, regarding them to be too dense or inferior to hold conversation with. Eil knew he was among equals from the beginning. With Sherwin and Rafen caring for him and flying with him, Eil quickly became one of the most talkative dragons alive.
Rafen had never thought of the dragons having their own stories and traditions—their own conversations—let alone waiting for him with eager anticipation.
“As my ancestors feel, so all people feel,” Eil said. “The Liai of the Woods, the birds, the badgers, the bears, the deer, the wolves— they all wait for Runi ki Hafa, and when he come among them, much excitement he bring. They tell it to all. The wolves brag and make the bears angry. The rabbit and hare all boast one day they be your meal in the Wood, yes, yes, and they shriek in joy later.”
Eil threw back his head and made a loud, cawing sound, like a large, masculine crow. Rafen took this to be a laugh and found it infectious; he couldn’t help laughing, too.
Eil is intensely aware of his special giftings, even if he doesn’t have full command over them yet. When the ruler of Zal Ricio ‘el Nria comments in shock that Rafen’s dragon “talks to him!”, Eil reminds the Zaldian chief of the other things he can do too.
Eil turned his head to Obed. The chief quailed and wouldn’t meet his eyes.
“Is afraid to look at Eil, yes,” Eil said, “because Eil can make man people feel warm and safe, and make them do what he want, make them stop fighting him. Man people have to move fast to not fall under Eil’s power. Eil’s voice and eyes special, lovely voice and eyes, Eil is handsome!”
Eil threw his head up and writhed in self-satisfied delight. Rafen held his own ribs so he wouldn’t crack them.
“But big man wonder why Eil talk. Eil tell the big man.” Eil thrust his head forward so his snout was in Obed’s face. Obed flinched but held his ground. “Eil has Fourth Runi to ride him, yes! Eil love Fourth Runi, so Eil talk to him. Is great honor. Eil talk to little Hral, little Sherwin man, as well, because Sherwin man is special, too. But normal man?”
Eil turned his head and spat a combination of saliva and sparks onto the ground. A fire shot up like a jet, and Rafen surged forward to absorb the flames.
“Normal man is stupid, foolish, slow.” Eil rolled his eyes up in his head and made some low, ridiculous grunts. “Is what normal man is like. So Eil not open dragon mouth to speak to stupid people. Is like a bear talk to an ant.”
The chief bowed in response to this explanation, obviously too disquieted to reply.
Later in Consort Part One, Eil and Rafen must face the enemy dragon rider Tirok in public battle. While Eil seems confident, Rafen is understandably nervous.
“MY LORD FLEDGLING, GOOD DAY FOR A FIGHT IT IS, YES, YES. SMASH TIROK. SMASH ’NAZ, HIS DRAGON,” Eil bellowed.
It is possible that Eil is about to prove what he has always known: that he is the best dragon alive. And Rafen will prove what he has always known: that he is the Fourth Runi, and he is equal to any challenge.