The Tale of Yuxinglong's Rest

Ah, Yuxinglong. We rarely descended to speak to the mortals, even in her time. She was always the impossible one, with her potions and spells.
— fellow dragon
  Yuxinglong is known as a slumbering golden dragon in the former lands of the Lost Empire of Meihua, in what is now Yulan Sheng. In the early centuries of the second milennium post-Worldrend, she was said to be a shapeshifting healer that travelled the land offering her powers to the world's commonfolk. She was reportedly attacked and slain by Meihuan forces as a result of a grave misunderstanding, and her body interred inside Yuxinglong's Rest.   Common folklore holds that the dragon is not actually dead and is just sleeping, and that the Sanguine Path leading to her tomb blossomed from the droplets of her blood. Pilgrims still travel this path in hopes of healing, and many Xin-Jiyan faiths encourage their healers to travel to the tomb and provide aid. Through this, the myth's hopeful properties become a reality, and the dragon's legacy lives on.

Summary

Our healer, our saviour.
 
Once upon a time, there lived a dragon who wanted to do the impossible.
Humans and dragons lived separate lives.
Humans on the ground, suffering under the rule of the brilliant Jade Empress.
And dragons in the air, close to the realm of the gods.
The dragon saw the struggles of humanity, and wished to help.
But they had seen her fly, and they had fled in fear.
So it was that she came up with a plan.
  In the guide of a human, the dragon travelled to the village wise-person.
Teach me, she asked. Teach me your alchemy and your herblore, and I will help your people.
The wise-person was old, and quite experienced with their people.
They looked at her through the eyes the gods had gifted them, and saw her heart.
"You will serve as I serve, and heal as I heal."
"Carry with you my words through the weight of your ages, and I will teach you all I have."
So she promised, and so she did.
  Soon, the dragon could spread her concoctions through the towns.
She learnt how to use healing magic, and travelled from place to place, helping where she could.
The commonfolk began to rely on their mysterious healer for remedies.
She was faster than everyone else, and far more kind.
Even better: she did not charge in gold. Her payment was in gifts, trinkets, and stories.
  As the years went on, they noticed she did not age. Nobody asked her why.
Instead, she became enshrined in folklore as a spirit.
The locals called her with offerings of incense and treasure.
One day, she was called to help during a bandit raid.
She saw the people she cared for bleeding in the streets, and saw red.
She unleashed her full might, and declared her identity for all to hear.
"I am Yuxinglong! I am the spirit of this land, and these are my people! You will leave them!"
The bandits fled in panic. They had not expected a dragon.
  The locals were not scared as she had expected. They were, instead, greatly pleased.
Her offerings increased, and commonfolk from further away began to travel to see her.
She became their patron - their guardian. A spirit of peace and protection. Their dragon.
It couldn't last forever.
  One day, a child of the imperial family of Meihua fell gravely sick whilst visiting their summer palace.
Their mages could not heal the wounds, and the nobles despaired. The child grew weaker yet.
It was a servant woman who stepped in to offer her words of helpful advice. Desperate, they listened.
She spoke of their healing spirit, of their eternal guardian.
Distrustful, but desperate, the child's father sent out guards to find this so-called spirit.
  The guards were not kind.
They stole medicine from the villagers in the hopes that it would heal the child.
They set fire to incense supplies, broke the shrines, and left chaos in their wake.
The dragon saw the billowing flames and heard her people screaming.
She flew to the village with haste. She had to help.
The guards had seen dragons before: great, terrible beasts of wing and claw.
They saw no help. They attacked.
  Unused to combat, their blows met their mark, and the dragon suffered a mortal wound.
Her cry of pain echoed across the valley with the cried of her villagers, and she fled.
Behind her, her lifeblood stained the path red.
The guards and villagers followed the trail back to her home.
It was small - a stone hall in the mountains, where she kept her medicines and scrolls.
Having realised their crimes, the guards apologised.
The villagers pushed them back, and tried to get in to help.
  The dragon batted them all away with her tay. Slowly, painfully, she brewed a potion.
It was not for herself. She handed it to the guards, for the ill child. It would heal them, she said.
As they stammered their thanks, she yawned, and laid down against her bed of trinkets.
And surrounded by the people she had loved and spent centuries caring for:
She closed her eyes, and slept.
  The potion worked like a miracle, and the imperial family demanded they be able to thank its creator.
Shamed, the guards explained their crimes before the Jade Empress herself.
Her family was dismayed, and she was furious.
The guards who had harmed the dragon were executed.
The rest were ordered to memorialise her. To decorate her tomb, and--
To serve her and her villager as protectors until their bloodlines came to an end.
  And so the great dragon sleeps on, in an eternal tomb that has only grown more beautiful in time.
Her body still breathes, and those who require her aid travel to her side to pray.
Sometimes, if one is lucky, their prayers will reach her, and they will be cured.
The world still prays that one day, she will awaken, and the world will again have its healer.
Date of First Recording
2500s
Date of Setting
2300s
Related Species
Related Locations
Related Organizations


Comments

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18 Jul, 2021 17:58

What a lovely article. I had the intense desire to want to know more about the jade Empress. But yeah it was a very nice article, Was not expecting it to go that way!. It had a way to hook me that made you want to keep on reading as well!

19 Jul, 2021 11:07

I love this

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19 Jul, 2021 15:41

Oooh, poetry and dragons? I couldn't be happier. I wonder if she'll ever wake? Amazing article :)

You should check out the The 5 Shudake, if you want of course.