"As the deep purple falls over sleepy garden walls", I stand lost in my reverie with my arm around Lady Laura. The chill of the evening is upon me, but I scarcely notice the elements as I contemplate the mysteries and wonders of life itself. The Great Battle is over, almost anti-climactic, in some ways. The losses make the victory seem bitter in retrospect. Still, there are some things to rejoice.

First,the great surprise of the French coming to our aide! For the first, and possibly the last time, ever! Still we were thankful. To the Brave Men and Dragons, living and dead, who fought here, this victory must be dedicated, in a larger sense they have consecrated it far more than I ever could.

The memory of my "buddy": Glymph lives on in me and several new babies in the Castle carry his great name.

I recall, The Memorial was attended by dragons great and small, and humans, one and all. Tear drops fell without end, but we knew if need be, we'd do it again.

I am recalling, the formal peace treaty held on the brigantine Brittania (which rules the sea) and signing same were Merga and other Serpent leaders, King Paul, Glymph the Elder, and myself. That was somewhat triumphant.

Smiling at Lady Laura, I recall, there was but one point of contention. After the battle had ceased and the serpents departed, an egg was found on the beach, no doubt dropped by its injured mother in her retreat. The nurturing ladies of The Castle rescued this egg, without my knowledge, They cared for it and tenderly loved the small, female serpent which emerged! The serpents wanted this serpent-child returned to them! The ladies of The Castle were aghast!

However, the young one, having no desire to return to kith and kin, had requested asylum. Especially, as she had adapted to fresh water. Thus determined she could not flourish in sea water, a compromise was found. The tiny serpent was to be transported to The North Lands to a hazy, distant body of water. There should she be placed, and safely reside forever, safe from dragons and men, in The Loch known as Ness.

Thinking of this, I smile and pulling Lady Laura by the hand, I shout: "Come! I hear music! If I'm not mistaken there's a polka dance in the ..."

She hesitates...

I say, "What?"

She points to a window in the upper turret. There twirls the figure of Princess Pauline. Laughing merrily as we leave the balcony, we join the living dancers!!