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E-Mail and Reality von Peter Lässig

"Damn!", Peter cursed and looked at his watch. 11.32 am. The young man sighed, "I will be too late." Peter was on his way to Munich International Airport, or better, he *should* be on his way, instead of it he sat there in a traffic-jam, about 12 km. "I should have known better. Friday noon, this highway, rushhour is starting. Shit! Damn! Damn! Damn!" Hitting the wheel with one fist, he looked again at his watch; 11:35. Nervously he changed the tape in his car-stereo and let the techno-beats stomp through the car. There was half an hour left, 30 minutes for further 25 km. The airport of Munich is on the very outskirts of Munich, the distance between the place where the young man works and the airport is about 40 km. And no end of the traffic- jam...

"Flight DE 374-89 from Detroit is just arrived on Gateway 16", those words Peter heard as he headed for the terminal D where he had to go. Peter looked on the huge electronic board showing arrivals and departures. From the huge window on the other side of the terminal D one had a fantastic view to the waiting aeroplanes and Peter could easily see the huge body of the Lockheed Tristar of Delta-Air. He ignored it and hurried to the big glass-doors where lots of other people were waiting. Men with flowers welcoming their loved ones, women waiting for their husbands, parents waiting for their children... Peter waited for someone special. "Hmm, what if they all knew that they flew together with an actual *dragon*?", Peter wondered and grinned. Yes, this time it came true, he was going to meet his e-mail-friend Doran, a silver-blue dragon, now captured in a human body. He wanted to spend some days in Germany together with his friend Peter. Strange enough, Peter was nearly twice as old as Doran (in his human form), but this didn't matter to both of them. Peter looked around, but he could not see his friend. He waited and waited, finally the crowd was gone and Peter stood there alone... and puzzled. Finally he turned around and started walking towards the exit. "What could have happened? Was I wrong with the date or the flight-number? Was...", he muttered as he was interrupted by a male voice, "Excuse me...are you >Peter L...<?"
Peter jerked back a little as he nearly hit a young man standing near the exit. "Oh, sorry, I didn't see y....Doran?! Hey, Doran! Yes, it's me. Welcome here in Germany!" the young man said and they gave each other a hug. "Are you waiting longer? I didn't see you coming out with the others!" "Oh, I think you have *seen* me, but not noticed me...your look was somehow ...empty. Something wrong?" "Oh, no, not really, it was only the stress to get to the airport. But now let's go. Are you hungry? And then, what should we do - first going to my home, maybe you want to relax a little and refresh yourself or do want to do a little sightseeing tour...". "If you don't mind I would rather refresh myself a little, you know, such a flight is not only enjoyable, especially if you are not able to use your own wings." Both the young men laughed and went side by side to Peter's car.

After Doran took a little nap and a refreshing shower, they both took the suburban train for Munich Downtown. Peter wanted to show his friend some beautiful sights of "his" beloved city..and of course, he wanted Doran to taste some typical Bavarian dishes. So they - at least this evening - would ignore all Burger Kings or McDonald's...They spent a beautiful time together and during Peter's explications, they discussed of course "their" topic: Dragons. Peter somehow still was a doubter concerning the real existence or a probable return of dragons, so finally Doran said: "Oh, my friend, I am afraid to say, there will be soon  a big surprise for you...". But although Peter asked for further details, Doran only smiled and changed the topic....
Finally they went back to Peter's home.

At home, Peter the first time realized the plenty of bags Doran brought for his trip. "What the hell do you want with all your bagage?", he asked. "Oh, all these things I need. And *this* one here-", Doran took a nice camcorder-camera out of one of his bags- "is quite important. Can you handle such a thing?" Peter shook his head. "I never did." "So you better should learn to use it soon", Doran muttered under his breath and added for Peter to hear: "Oh, it is not so difficult - just as easy as photography."
"What do you want to see tomorrow, my friend? We could take my >Baghy< and go to the countryside, maybe to the place where I lived before. Or to the town where I studied business accounting. Or in the Alps, or..." "What is >Baghy<?" "Oh, I named my car. You know, >Bagheera<, the black panther from >Jungle Book<." "But your car is green and not black." "Yeah, but the car before was a dark-gray VW and called >Akhela, the grey wolf<. And since my girlfriend calls me >Shere Khan<, my latest car became >Baghy<...". They both laughed about that silly logic. 
"Oh, somewhere into the Alps would be fine", Doran finally added. "I could guess it, old fellow-dragon", Peter chuckled, and this decision taken, they prepared themselves for going to sleep. 

This and similar ways, they spent together a wonderful time and the week passed quickly by. Peter learned much about dragons and in return, he was able to help Doran not to give up his faith into human-kind completly.

Peter met Doran some years earlier in the internet, where Doran runs his own homepage and even a dragon-club. But there was something special about that young fellow: Peter knew many dragon-lovers and also many so called "dragons". Indeed, the net was full of people who believe themselves to be dragons or believe dragons to come into cities like Los Angeles for kidnapping people or choose someone especially pure-hearted for helping a dragon living in another dimension to fight a great danger or things like that. Other people call themselves "Dragonlord" or "Master of the Dragons" and some unluckier ones  were not able anymore to distinguish between  imagination and reality. 
Peter always has tried to keep away from these people as he was disappointed by them quite a lot. 

Doran was different. Yes, he also claimed to be a dragon, but he was not so fantatic about it. He always considered and revised his own emotions and feelings before coming to a conclusion. But during the last few months, for Doran it became more and more a fact of actually being a dragon and Peter started to accept this point of view, although it has been a very hard way for him to do so. To believe in the existence of dragons in our society is a very tricky thing: Either you can get the victim of a betrayer or of a fanatic as it happened to him or they call you mad and ask for medical advice. 
Peter discussed these problems with his friend Doran in his mails and the dragon was a wonderful teacher:
"You see, Peter, if one of your friends tells you he has watched a dragon landing in his hometown, then this sounds incredible but it can be possible. But if I read all those nice little stories your friend has written about of him being chosen by the very dragon as a judge over some assassins who wanted to slay this dragon and also even a dragon-queen, then I start to doubt, my friend. Your friend has great skills in being a story-teller, but he is really endangered to lose himself into the realms of fantasy and there, you musn't follow him. Please. promise me that, my dear friend Peter. Believe in us dragons, but follow also your heart and your ratio. If the dragons, your friend wants to prove their existence to you,  want to reveal themselves to you as he claims, then they do not - as your friend says - need any coordinates from the place where you live. Mind you, if your friend has told you the truth, "his" dragon didn't need his coordinates to pick him up in the city. Peter, you must be careful. Not everyone who says he loves dragons can be trusted blindly. This lesson you must understand, my friend." 
Indeed, Peter has learned some bitter lessons...

But now Doran was finally here in Germany and besides all this lessons about dragons and how to avoid maniacs, another thing Peter learned - how to use a camcorder.

And this very camcorder layed now in front of the two friends on the table. It was the last evening they had to spend together before Doran would fly home. Peter was a little depressed, because his friend's presence has brought much joy and brightness into his daily business. And also Doran did not talk much this evening, there was a strange mood in the air. Doran seemed to be concentrating on somewhat Peter could not figure out. Finally he broke the silence. "So you really love dragons, don't you, Peter?". Peter was taken in surprise by that question. "Eh, yes, of course. I love dragons. Why not?" "But you still refuse to accept their, or better: *our* existence. Why?" "Because I have never met one in its real dragon-form. Believe me, I would do really *everything* just to get a glance on a dragon." Doran looked Peter straight into his eyes. "You really would do *everything*?" Peter nodded. Silence.
"Well then", Doran muttered, "let's do it." and to Peter he said: "Can I use your PC for sending an e-mail to my parents at home?" "Of course", Peter said eagerly although he wondered about that sudden change of the topic. "I am sorry", Doran stopped Peter going into his room, "could you leave me alone for a few minutes, please? And please don't ask any questions *now*". Peter slowly walked back to the table, took another drink and changed the CD in the player.
After a while, the door to Peter's working-room opened and Doran appeared back...and Peter stared at him in disbelief. Doran was completly naked except of the big white towel he was wrapped in. Before the young man could say anything, Doran pointed at the camcorder. "Take it and then let's go outside, my friend.". "Doran, don't you think you owe me an explanation for *this*", Peter pointed at Doran's towel, "we can't go outside that way." "Oh, I think it will be better to be outside, please trust me, my friend", Doran smiled. "I don't understand...""You shall see it soon, and now don't let us waste more time", with these words, Peter's dragon-friend headed for the exit. "I only hope we won't meet anyone who knows me", Peter muttered and followed his friend outside.

Doran walked straight to the open fields behind the house where Peter lived. After a short walk he stopped and looked up to the sky. The stars were shining, sparkling like diamonds in this crispy fresh night. Doran sighed. "Well, my friend. Give me a hug and swear the dragons' oath." "Pardon?" "A hug, full of your affection! And then the oath I taught you once". "I don't understand, sorry. You can't be serious." "I *am* serious. Just half an hour ago you told me you would do *everything* to see a dragon. That you love dragons." "Yes, I said that, but why are we here? It's fuckin' cold here..." "Look at me, don't you think I feel these low temperatures stronger than you", Doran interrupted Peter's complains. "Please, show me your affection and your trust to get it done finally." "What *done*? And how should I show you my affection?" "How do you show your girlfriend that you love her, that you care for her a big deal ?". "Hmm. I kiss and hug her.". "Fine. Just do it with me now. Prove me that you and I were friends. That you love me." "Are you crazy? You are a boy. I would never hug or even kiss a boy, am I a pervert gay?", Peter protested. "Please, Peter, don't become ridiculous. Is it pervert to hug a friend? Besides, you promised to do everything for seeing a dragon...". "So you are gonna tell me, if I kiss you, you would change into a dragon, just like in a fairy-tale? How stupid you think am I to believe in such a foolishness? And then, should I kiss the next frog I see hoping for getting a princess?". "Peter, listen to me now when I am telling you this. During all the years, during all the e-mails we exchanged, you accepted me to be a dragon. You contacted me, because I am a dragon. You know my story, the story of Doran Eirok. You have said you believe it is true. Has it all been just a lie from you? Did you betray me all the times? Please, tell me here and now: Do you believe in dragons. Do you believe me to be a dragon. Do you really love dragons. Is it just a sort of a fantasy role-game for you? Tell me now. And tell me the truth!" Silence. 

Peter turned around, staring at the opposite direction, saying nothing. Doran sighed and took a step towards his friend. What, if his friend Peter really has lain to him all the time? This musn't be, this can't be. All hopes would be shattered...He prayed to the Lord that his fears would be unfounded. He put a hand on Peter's shoulder. Peter jerked a little bit and stood silent. "Please, Peter, tell me, what's the matter.". "I can't believe it", Peter said shivering and Doran could see a slight tear running down Peter's face. "So it was all a game for you, from the beginning on?" Doran asked softly. Peter shook his head. "No, you can't call it a game. All I wrote about my experiences with dragons and  my feelings towards dragons is true. It's only...I always *wished* your story of >Doran Eirok< would be true, but I never believed it could be true *actually*. And when you are telling me it would be enough to kiss you like the fairy-tale's frog which should become a prince after the kiss...It is so ridiculous. Besides, you yourself taught me to be sceptical and careful." "So, what are you going to do now, Peter?", Doran asked. "What should I do?", Peter asked back. "Just follow your heart, then, my friend."
With this, Peter wrapped his arms around his friend and gave him a big hug...and a passionate kiss of friendship on his lips. Doran took a step back and smiled. "Thank you, my friend. And now, take the camera. You hopefully know to handle it now. But before you start, I must give you *this*.". Doran passed an envelope to Peter. "Open it when I will tell you - and now , start the camer...!!!" Doran couldn't finish the sentence. Suddenly the whole area became enlightened by a strange, strong blue-white light.

And then the storm began. Sparks and lightnings and thunder and screams of Doran through the night. Peter was not able to move, he stood where he was, both feet pinned down to the ground in fear and amazement. Where Doran just stood there was now a floating of light and fog. Entranced Peter filmed it with the camera. And as sudden as all begun, it became dark again and Peter was alone. Doran was disappeared. At least the *human* Doran, Peter knew.

The young man gasped as his nose catched a strong strange smell and his ears caught a rumble like a thunder-storm. During all the darkness around him, there was a shimmering, a blue-silver shimmer...there was....Peter couldn't believe it, he felt down on his knees, crying and praying ..he knelt infront of a big foot...or better, a bestial claw with sharp talons...there was actually a dragon infront of the human.
The dragon lowered his head and said at a low voice for not scaring his friend. "Please, stand up. You need not to bow your head infront of me. Its just me and I  am still your friend...and I love you, Peter. With your permission."  Peter stood up, shivering. He witnessed a miracle which he was unable to capture completly - it was too much for a human mind. The dragon nuzzled gently the human and folded a wing over him. "Now you can have a glance at a dragon as you have always wished. Does it make you happy?" Peter couldn't answer. "I hope, you have my metamorphosis recorded on the video. Now it is time to open the envelope. Please, go inside the house and read what I have written." Peter still didn't move. Doran pushed him gently with his snout. "Now, go on my friend. It's the last favour I am asking for."
 Suddenly it flashed into Peter's mind and he swallowed hard. "You will be gone when I return after reading your letter, won't you?". Doran wrapped his wings around his human friend. "Peter, I promise you. I will be back soon. With Cyria, my mate. And together we will bring you to my home if it is your wish. But for now...you are right. I must leave, there are lots of things which must be done. And there are also many things to do for you. So please, go now. And don't cry. There's no need for tears. You gave me back my true identity. And I will grateful for it. And I love you, I always had and I always will. And you know that." Peter couldn't say  a  word. He felt like in a nightmare. A dragon! Doran actually was a dragon. And now, he will lose his friend, because, a dragon certainly never would return. "Farewell, my friend", these simple words hit Peter like a lightening. But before he could say anything, he was alone in the  dark, on a field outside of the big town. No traces, nothing. Peter looked into the sky, stars were shimmering as usual. Was it all an illusion? Peter felt the paper in his hand and slowly walked towards the house. And with every step he told himself to be brave and  that he was  a man of  30 and not a child anymore...

He entered his apartment and opened the envelope, reading the lines written by Doran.

 "Dear friend,
when you read this lines, I will be at home, *my* home. I am searching 
for my family: Cyria, my mate, and my hatchling. But you must do a very 
important thing. Go into your working-room. There you will find an 
envelope. Put in the video-tape and send it to the address I wrote down. 
Than start your computer and post the e-mail I prepared for my parents. 
Oh, by the way, don't wonder my bags are gone. That's a part of the 
spell. And...don't forget, there's no reason for you to be sad. I will 
return to you as soon as I can. And I will be always near by your side, 
you will certainly *see* me if you keep your eyes open.
Thank you for everything you have done to me, Peter. 
Take care, my friend.

Peter stepped into the room and started the computer. Strange, nothing left which reminded of Doran's visit for the holidays. Peter started his computer and clicked the "Microsoft Outlook" - button. A few moments later he found the message Doran wrote for his parents.

 "Dear Mom and Dad.
Within a few days you will receive a video-tape which explains all. You 
have it known all the time that it will happen one day. Now it has 
happened. I am back where I belong to. I want to thank you for your love 
and care you gave me all these 17 years. And I will visit you soon. I 
will always keep you in my heart.
 Yours, Doran."

Peter pushed the "Send"-button and wanted to leave, as he noticed a little glimmer in his room. There was a little shimmer on the wall which was not to explain. The shimmer faded and on the wall a big poster was left, showing a beautiful blue-silver scaled dragon laying in a relaxed 
position in a sort of a corridor with different doors leading somewhere...
The young man walked over to the wall and touched the poster. It felt...warm and somehow alive. "I love you, Doran. Farewell...and good luck, my friend", he whispered weakly and placed a gentle kiss on the dragon-snout on the paper. And for a second it seemed that the dragon smiled at Peter and deep inside his head he heared a powerful but soft voice:
 "I will return, my friend, I will return."

Und hier verbirgt sich noch ein Bild von Doran!