Diff the Dragon by Angela Lott, illustrations by Richard Bartrop. An Okal Rel Universe Legacy Novella featuring the young Alivda
Angela Lott is the middle child of Lynda’s three daughters. She did two years of Business schooling at the College of New Caledonia and is now working as a receptionist at her local FYiDoctors. In her spare time she enjoys writing, video blogging, reading and watching very nerdy TV shows.
“If you let it get any longer it will get in your way all the time,” Amel continued his haircut campaign.
Diff thought about this while they walked hand in hand through the curved halls of the Market Round. Alivda now came up to just past Amel’s hip. She was very proud of this, seeing as she was only three years old.
The Market Round was a huge shopping centre for all kinds of people. That was why Amel liked it so much, for its diversity. That and the three tiers of shops and the crowds of people made it so he didn’t stand out.
“Okay,” Alivda said, finally caving to what she clearly thought of as a chore. “But fast.”
“I can do that,” Amel said.
He led Alivda towards an establishment he frequently visited for the good company.
“In here,” Amel said.
“No,” Diff said again.
“Why not?” Amel asked.
Alivda pointed to the sign. It read ‘Casual Cuts.’
“Yes,” Amel said, “this is a hair cutting place.”
“No,” Alivda said again.
“What’s the matter?” Amel asked her, leaning down so he could look her in the eye.
“No,” Alivda said, no longer pointing anywhere.
Amel sighed. He could have put his foot down and made her go to this place but he knew he would cave as soon as she looked upset.
“Alright, fine,” Amel said. “Where do you want to go?”
“Pretty!” Alivda said, pointing to her chest.
“Yes, you are pretty,” Amel said. “But where do you want to go?”
“Not pretty,” Alivda said, pointing to Casual Cuts.
“You are so spoiled,” Amel said, smiling, for he loved spoiling her.
Twenty minutes later they were at West Alcove, in a much smaller upper class place.
“Is this better?” Amel asked Diff.
She giggled and jumped up in the air. Amel gestured for her to climb on and she did. With her secure on his shoulders, they headed off.
“What can I do for you today, Immortality?” the greeter or host of the salon asked.
“She needs a haircut,” Amel said, pointing to the blonde on his shoulders.
“This way, sir.”
Alivda was seated in a chair and told to wait.
“Don’t touch that!” Amel said, snatching the hair dryer from her, but only seconds later she had a hot iron instead.
“No!” Amel yelled. “That could hurt you. Let go!”
And he tried to pull the hot iron away from her. Alivda released it right away and the backlash of his own pulling force banged the hot element into Amel’s face.
The few seconds of contact with Amel’s skin was enough to leave an angry burn across his cheek.
“That isn’t funny, Alivda,” Amel said, for Diff was giggling and clapping her hand in amusement. “Now sit quietly; they will be here soon,” Amel said then turned his attention to his burned face. He barely had time to do more than tentatively touch his burns, however, before the sound of a bang alerted him.
He looked up. Diff was holding a piece of her hair in triumph. She had cut it off as close to her scalp as she could. Amel barely had enough time to register that the bang he had heard had been all the hairdresser’s tools being thrown to the ground as Alivda dove for the scissors.
“What have you done?” Amel said softly to Alivda, who just grinned like she had done a great thing. It was then that the hairdresser arrived.
“What have you done!” she cried. “My salon! Out, out!!”
Amel didn’t need telling twice. He grabbed Alivda, who was still holding her hair like a prize, left some money on the chair and ran.