This is a scene from the opening chapter of my monster hunting NaNo Novel. And you must know this, the fireman in the scene, pulling out his hose and ready to help fight the dragon is my dad. He gets that cameo purely because when I texted him one day asking, "If the Lovell Firefighters had to fight a dragon, what would they do?" he fired back a very logical answer without even blinking an eye. He's the coolest dad ever.
Mae readjusted her rifle and aimed it at the dragon, which thanks to Porter’s ill-timed shot, had turned away from the kiddie pool and lumbered toward them. A blast of fire from her nostrils sent both Porter and Mae diving for cover, but fortunately the dragon’s range only extended to just shy of the bumper. It stomped over the melted playground equipment and breathed fire again. This time it melted the bumper, and Porter screamed as he scrambled out of the way. Mae met him behind the Jeep, barely biting back a laugh at Porter’s girlish reaction.
“Shoot it,” Mae said sarcastically. She turned around the corner of the Jeep and finally got her first shot off, hitting the dragon squarely in the eye.
With a howl of agony (and another jet of fire that shot upward), the dragon danced around the horseshoe pit, smashing the picnic pavilion with her tail. A grenade exploded off her chest, merely making the dragon stumble backward and scream in fury.
“I don’t have an endless supply of those, you know,” Mae snapped at Porter.
“This isn’t as easy as it looks on TV,” he complained.
Mae shook her head and raised her rifle again, taking out the dragon’s other eye. It stomped forward, crashing through the wreckage of the picnic pavilion and blasted another stream of fire. It seared across the hood of the jeep, and both Mae and Porter instinctively jumped backward.
The dragon stomped blindly, sniffing the air around her. “How good’s her sense of smell?” Porter asked.
“Just developing. She can’t be more than a few months old.”
“That’s a baby?”
They both turned around the end of the jeep again. Porter finally landed a grenade underneath the dragon’s arm, and it teetered sideways, shooting fire now in random directions. Mae and Porter ran for it.
They sprinted for the skateboard park, taking refuge behind a large, metal ramp. From their vantage point, they could see that nothing remained of the Jeep.
Porter shot at the dragon again, this time hitting her tail. The dragon screeched and lunged in their direction.
“If you can’t hit her, don’t shoot! You’re only making her mad,” Mae shouted at him. Ignoring his wounded reply, she raised her rifle again and aimed for the heart.
The dragon shot another stream of fire just as Mae prepared to pull the trigger. Porter pulled her backwards and the shot went askew. Just before she opened her mouth to tell him off, she noticed the wilted end of the rifle.
“Thanks,” she said grudgingly, tossing it aside. She pulled the .454 from her pants and shoved it at Porter. “Give me the grenade launcher.”
Porter willingly handed it over, but gazed down forlornly at the small-looking handgun. “Will this do much…?”
“Not really, but—”
He cut her off. “It makes you feel better.”
Mae grinned and turned back to the dragon. She launched a grenade, hitting the dragon just below the chin. Thick purple blood splattered everywhere. Mae and Porter had to jump up and retreat again as fire engulfed their shelter. As they ran Mae noticed that several police cars and about a dozen fire trucks parked on the highway that ran by the west side of the park. Only a few of the occupants had dared get out of their vehicles, but all of them remained stone-still, bewildered eyes on the maimed beast. She did notice one fireman yanking on a hose. Mae laughed appreciatively and dove behind another metal ramp after Porter.
Aiming quickly, she shot another grenade, nailing the dragon under one of her legs. It toppled over, dust engulfing the skate park as the scaly, black monster fell to the ground.
Mae coughed and turned to Porter. “Give me the .454.” He gave it up reluctantly.
She jumped up and ran toward the dragon, avoiding the weak jets of flame still issuing from the dragon’s nose. When Mae stood only a few feet from the dragon’s mutilated head, she fired right into the skull, emptying the chamber.
“I thought you said that wouldn’t do any good.”
Mae looked up and saw Porter coming toward her. “Only at close range. Didn’t think you were going to risk that.”