Reale was working at the docks. He was currently moving a container from a ship to the stack of containers waiting to be loaded on the trucks. The work wasn’t easy by any means, but it paid well.
‘A little to the left! No. no! A little to the right! There! Slowly, lower it down!’ Yelled the supervisor as Reale se the container down. He lowered the container, let the other workers unchain the container, and went to the ship for the next container.
Time skip a bit forward, and he was done for the day. It was twilight as he headed for his home. Well, he and his family’s home. He was the father of 3 hatchlings. And man, the weren’t kidding when they said hatchlings were bottomless pits. They ate a lot, and they grew a lot, though they were still only the sixth of the size of him. He chuckled at the thought, and beat his wings faster. Although was tired, he couldn’t wait to see his family!
About 30 minutes later, he landed at the front of his house with a small thump. He could hear his hatchlings and his mate trying to control them. He smiled, and opened the door, and went inside. Immediately, he was covered with three masses of green, bronze, and black scales. ‘Daddy!’ They yelled, as they clung onto his neck, back, and leg. He laughed heartily, and picked one by one off him and set them on the ground. Then he nuzzled them lovingly, and when he looked up again, saw his mate, Lidya. She looked happy to see him, though she looked tired.
‘Guess they were quite a handful today as well, huh?’ Reale said, chuckling.
‘You have no idea.’ Lidya replied. ‘So, how was your day? And what do you want for dinner? Beef or lamb or chicken?’
‘Beef, thanks. Mine wasn’t so bad. Physically tiring, but at least not mentally so. You?’
‘Hmph. You should look after the hatchlings. One second you look away from them, they’re off to god knows where. They’re a real troublemaker.’
‘Am not!’ A small voice said. Reale looked down, and saw that Olivia, the green, was still standing there listening to their conversation. Reale looked at Olivia and told her to go to their room kindly. After Olivia went, Reale and Lidya resumed back to their conversation.
‘At least you’ll be meeting up with your friends tomorrow.’ Reale said.
‘Ah, yes. That reminds me. You don’t mind looking after the hatchlings, do you? I’ll probably come back home late.’
‘What? Of course not! I’d love to look after them for a change! Plus, they’ll probably like it as well. Probably more than they do with you! Sorry! Joking! Joking!’ Reale said, as Lidya swatted at him with her tail.
Lidya huffed and said ‘I’ll get the hatchlings to bed. Why don’t you go wash up? Then let’s go to bed ourselves.’ Reale nodded, and went to the bathroom to wash while Lidya put their hatchlings to sleep. After washing, he got out of the bathroom to find Lidya already on their bed, curled up. Reale climbed over to their bed, and curled up around his mate.
‘Have a good day!’ Reale said, as Lidya left the house to meet her friends. It was saturday, so he agreed to look after their hatchlings. Lidya took off, and Reale went back into their house. It was still morning, so the hatchlings were still asleep. He and Lidya had already told them that their mom would be gone for the day, so they won’t be surprised, but he can already tell that the hatchlings were going to miss their mother. He went to the kitchen and grabbed a glass of water, and drank. Then he began to do the dishes of yesterday’s supper and all the other work.
After an hour or so, Reale went to the hatchling’s room and woke Olivia (the green), Jake (the bronze), and Livira (the black). They groaned, and when Reale told them to go wash before breakfast, obeyed. Reale then served breakfast, which the hatchlings dug in eagerly. Reale, smiling, looked at them eating, and ate his as well. After eating, he told the hatchlings to go play in their room as he did the dishes. They groaned, again, this time wanting to fly. Reale chuckled, and promised them that they would go flying after he’d done the dishes. In a brightened mood, they went back to their room. But it wasn’t long before one of them came and tugged on his leg telling him to hurry up. Reale chuckled again, finished the dishes quickly, rounded up all three hatchlings, and announced that they were going on a flight.
‘Yay!’ they yelled, and almost flew out the door. Reale laughed, followed, closing the door behind him. He saw his hatchlings jumping around the lawn, and took flight. The hatchlings followed. As soon as they took flight, Reale slowed down and let the hatchlings take the lead as to let the go where they please as well as hae an eye on them as well. The hatchlings, full of energy, did acrobatic stunts and flew as fast or as slow as they pleased.
‘Dad.’ Jake said, coming to his side after a bit of time. ‘How can I get strong like you?’ Reale looked at him, surprised, then thought for a minute. A lot of thought crossed his mind, but he didn’t want his son to be like him. Sure, container transporting was an easy job and it paid well, but it was physically tiring. He didn’t want his son to be always tired after work. He wanted his son to have an easy life. He wanted his son to be free of danger. So he decided.
‘Son.’ He said. ‘Being strong isn’t what matters. You have to be smart. I know I’m strong and everyting, but I’m not all that you think I am. Sure, my job pays well and keeps me in shape, but I’m always facing danger. Danger of getting injured from work, danger of getting fired if I get old. But if you’re smart, that won’t happen. Or at least, the risk you’d be taking would be lower. I know you might not understand everything at your age, but son, being strong isn’t important. You have to be smart. Keep that in mind, son.’
Jake looked thoughtful, and a bit lost. Reale knew he wouldn’t understand everything, so he understood. After a bit of time to let his son thing, he said ‘Ok. That’s enough thinking for now. No need to worry about that right now. Why don’t you go play with your sisters?’ Jake slowly nodded, and went to play with his sisters. After Jake went to play again, Reale thought, ‘I’ll have to tell Olivia and Livira about that as well. They might not understand yet, but it’ll be better than nothing, and they need it.
Reale decided that they would be having lunch out for a change. (He didn’t want to admit that he didn’t want to prepare lunch.) He brought all his hatchlings to a nearby sandwich shop. He himself ordered a chicken-tuna sandwich while his hatchlings each chose bacon, beef, and salted pork. They ate their sandwiches under the shade of the shop, and as the hatchlings demanded that they fly more, Reale let them. After a few hours, the hatchlings were exhausted and it was near dinner time, Reale brought them home. He told them to wash, and when the hatchlings whined that they couldn’t clean their backs, he cleaned them one by one. Then they watched TV together, and then had dinner. Then they watched some more TV (which Reale was bored of, as it was kids program), and when it was bed time for the hatchlings, Reale put them to bed. Exhausted from all the activities of the day, the hatchlings went to sleep easily. Relieved from the hatclings, Reale went to the fridge and took out a beer and opened his laptop. He started to write his diary, and after he was done, just surfed the internet without any mind. Then Lidya returned.
‘Hey.’ Reale said, tiredly. It was near 11, and he was tired. Man, did the hatchlings have a lot of energy. Now he understood why Lidya always looked tired after he returned from work.
‘Hey.’ Lidya said. ‘I see the hatchlings kept you busy. I assume they’re asleep now?’
‘Yeah. Had a good day?’ Reale answered.
‘Yes. Thanks honey, for looking out for the hatchlings. Here. Try it. I bought it on the way home.’ Lidya said as she held out a cupcake. Reale took it, and ate it. It was delicious. ‘Thanks.’ He said, after he’d eaten it all. ‘God, I’m tired. I’ve been waiting for you to come home so I can get to bed. You don’t mind, do you?’
‘No. But wait for me, would you? I’ll just wash up and join you.’ Lidya said, smiling.
‘Ok.’ Reale said, and went to their room. He curled up on their bed, and waited for Lidya to join him. Or he tried to. Before he knew it, he was asleep. Lidya soon came to their room after Reale got asleep, and smiled at her husband’s sleeping form. She curled up inside him, and put her head on Reale’s neck.
‘I love you.’ Lidya said to her husband.
‘I love you, too.’ Reale mumbled in his sleep.