Ramona leads you down the path a ways, then steps off it. After cutting through a few hedges of dark-leafed shrugs, you see a flowering bush ahead. A large sign is posted there. As you get closer, you realize it says "Jewel-winged Swallowtailed Fairy Dragonflies". This must be the Dragonfly grove Sunkist mentioned. You look around, but don't see any motion.
"It looks like they aren't here," you say to Ramona, but she just smiles at you and looks upward. Following her gaze, you see a very small, but brilliant creature perched on a branch above your head. It is mint green, with blue and purple wings like those on butterflies. It has feathery antennae and bright orange eyes. It cocks its head at you.
"Don't be so easily discouraged by difficulties, traveler," it says, smiling.
"This is Chickory," Ramona says. "He is the gatekeeper for the grove." The creature nods.
"That I am."
"Are you a Fairy Dragonfly?" you ask, thinking that he does look a bit draconic."
"Not quite, I am a Speckled Dragonmoth," Chickory replies. "We are the caretakers of eggs and young creatures at the Refuge. My job has been to watch over the Fairy Dragonflies since they first came here as tiny grubs. Now, most of them are hatched adults, but there are still two chrysalises that have yet to hatch." He nods further down the branch. Looking over, a sparkling shape, like a ruby, catches your eye. It is a cocoon, you realize. You see another nestled in the leaves next to the first.
"They look like gemstones," you observe.
"Yes, and that's why they must be protected. Poachers love to collect them for their beauty and collect the adults so their parts can be used in magical potions." Ramona tells you.
"Ug," you say. The same thing happens to many animals where you come from.
"Yes, I never leave Rose and Firesoul alone," Chickory says. "They are very vulnerable at this stage, as well as brightly colored and sparkling. Some of the other creatures in the forest have a love for shiny objects that could easily be trouble for our young friends."
"They have names?" you ask, then feel silly. Of course they do. Chrysalises are only a temporary stage between grubs and adults.
"Oh yes, although they do not have their full adult names yet. As adults, their names will have three parts. For now, they only have one name."
"Oh," you say. You wonder where the others are. Ramona notices your wandering gaze.
"Are you interested in meeting some adults now?" she asks, smirking a bit.
"Of course!" You say happily.
"Just head into this grove," Chickory instructs. "It is bordered on all sides by the blackleaf bushes, so you will know when you have reached the borders. It is a large circle, so if you get lost, just walk until you find the blackleaf plants, then follow them until you reach back here."
"I'm going to stay here," Ramona says. "I've already made their acquaintance, and they are more than able to speak for themselves."
"All right," you say. You wish Chickory and Ramona farewell, then move away into the grove.
Dragonmoth & Fairy Dragonflies from Skyhaven Adoptions
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Last Updated: June 16, 2004