The Last Tsar’s Dragons by Jane Yolen, Adam Stemple
English | 2019 | Sci / Fi | ePUB | 480 Kb
The Last Tsar’s : It is the waning days of the Russian monarchy. A reckless man rules the land and his dragons rule the sky. Though the Tsar aims his dragons at his enemies—Jews and Bolsheviks—his entire country is catching fire. Conspiracies suffuse the royal court: bureaucrats jostle one another for power, the mad monk Rasputin schemes for the Tsar’s ear, and the desperate queen takes drastic measures to protect her family.
Revolution is in the air—and the Red Army is hatching its own weapons.
Discover Russia’s October Revolution reimagined in flight, brought to life by the acclaimed mother-and-son writing team of the Locus Award-winning novel, Pay the Piper, and the Seelie Wars series.
“Watching the dragons, the tsar smiled. He felt his heart beat to the rhythm of their wings. As he so often said to the tsarina—“It is as if I am there, flying aloft with them.
“When I was a boy, we believed only birds and bats flew.”
She always smiled when he said that, so unlike him, because Tsar Nicholas was not known for his imagination. “And butterflies and bees,” she teased.
He smiled down at her fondly. “Oh my darling Sunny,” he said, watching his strong-willed wife melt at that pet name. It might have been because the words were so unexpected from someone who was known to be precise and punctual, in the extreme. But she also knew how much he valued her thoughts on important matters. She always gave him something to think about, something the generals or the councilors usually failed to consider. He didn’t tell the men that, of course. Or how much he relied on her. It was his little secret with the tsarina.
As the tsar watched the lead dragon turn the vee toward the provinces, he did not notice the peasants below gathering the dung. Not until he heard them reciting the old rhyme,
Fire above, fire below,
Pray to hit my neighbor.
It works, he thought, equally well for dragons as military planes and their munitions. And it certainly rhymes splendidly in the dialect.
He turned from the fading scene of departing dragons and looked at himself in the full-length mirror along the far wall.”