Coda: Which Sex Is Better To Be
This seems like a good time to be officially Very Glad To Be A Dragoness. I don’t get much of a choice about it though. I suppose I could shapeshift to male and pretend for a while. As long as I never met another dragon, since they could tell instantly. Or anyone else with the least bit of magioception.
|I am guaranteed getting married, since there are two drakes for every dragoness.||
I’m not really very eager to get married. Arilash, well, Roroku was right about Arilash, so I guess she does want to have a drake she can mate with whenever she wants and nobody will complain. I haven’t really been looking longingly on drakes very much. And I’ve tried, too.
This is rather more than a matter of gratifying intimate personal urges, or even producing progeny. Mated pairs of dragons control territory. Bachelors do not. They live on the territory of mated pairs, one way or another.
|I get a nicer coming-of-age inspection.||Every year or so a big slimy vile thing shoves its way out of my cloaca. Or, after I’m married, it’ll probably be fertilized sometimes too, and I’ll have to destroy the ones I don’t want to hatch.|
|Dragonesses enjoy copulating more, according to Arilash. I can’t imagine how she found this out. If it’s true at all.||I can’t feel, so I’m not going to enjoy it much.|
|Drakes need to compete all the times, before they’re married or definitely not getting married. Lots of fighting, lots of verbal sparring, lots of treasure hunting, all that sort of thing. Which some of them enjoy (Greshthanu) and some of them don’t (Osoth).||Dragonesses compete too. The customs are a bit different. We fight and spar verbally as much. We don’t collect much treasure, that would be offensive to the drakes — the drake gets status from presenting his mate a good hoard. Amatory prowess is another realm of competition … for drakes too, but more for dragonesses. Arilash is going to beat me in that. She’s been practicising, if the rumors are true. Which is very undignified and inappropriate of course!|
|I am not much obliged to study anything in particular beyond the basics of breath, sorcery, combat, rulership of households and domains. A dragoness can get away with more laziness than a drake. I know a handful who have taken advantage of this option. (I’ve actually had more of the opposite problem: I’ve wanted to study sorcery, but nobody will teach me anything but the simplest, because it will stunt my growth more than it already is.)||Drakes who think it likely that they will lose generally need to study some craft or profession which will give them some status among dragons, afterwards. Osoth studies necromancy and Nrararn studies sky-magic, both quite respectable and useful specialities. Tultamaan studies the king, and is one of his advisors and retainers. Ythac should probably be paying more attention, though he is pretty good with information magic. Of those four, only Ythac has much of a real chance at getting married.|
|I am automatically considered attractive and appealing no matter what I look like or what parts of me got broken. This ought to be important. I am probably going to be the technically worst lover in all of the dragon-worlds. I’m going to keep asking “is it in yet?”, because I can’t tell. If not using an outright scrying spell — can you think of anything more offensive than that? But ultimately that doesn’t matter. I’m a dragoness, which means I am more desireable than the lack-of-mates that half the drakes have.|| |
I am not actually very attractive. I’m a dull black color without much texture. Arilash is a dull tan color without much texture. Roroku is a dull green color without much texture. And so on. Compare that to the drakes: Nrararn with his twirly horn and incandescent mane and pretty cerulean color, Greshthanu with his garden of blue and orange spikes, etc. etc. etc.
This is really just the same as songbirds. Females are dull colors to avoid attracting attention. Males are bright colors to attract attention: attention of females, attention of predators, whatever.
But I’m not a stupid little songbird. I’d like to look exciting and dramatic. Again, I could shapeshift or use cosmetic spells the way drakes do, but everydragon can tell that they’re there and pretty much can tell what I really look like too so it doesn’t help
|I have a better-than-drake chance of surviving my Great Separation. (Mating flights must be nasty on Dragonhome for the original, un-Separated dragons. Two drakes for every dragoness is bad enough, but they’ve got three or four.)||I did survive my Great Separation, so this one doesn’t seem very important any more. Sure, I should be thankful and happy for it. But the only difference it makes to my day-to-day life is that I have a day-to-day life. That’s surprisingly hard to remember.|
|I’m going to get married.|| |
… I’m going to get married.
I’m not even being flippant or clever here. Suppose that I have my choice of four drakes (really two or three) and I don’t want to marry any of them, or anyone at all? Suppose I want to go be an explorer, a discoverer of new worlds? A researcher into the depths of sorcery (bad for size, bad for fertility)? Anything other than the co-ruler of a tiny-to-small domain? That’s not a choice for me. I’m going to get married, because there are so many more drakes than dragonesses that every dragoness has to get married.
I hope there’s actually some fun in it. I’m not going to enjoy sex, that’s clear enough. My parents seem basically happy with each other, but they say that’s some work to achieve and due in a large part to a regular schedule of sex plus lots of unscheduled. Rankotherium and Dessvaria seem to basically hate each other.
I hereby resolve to meet my fate with all the honor and bravery of a dragon. And if I don’t have all the sensuality of a dragon, I’ll fake it as best I can.
(I hope you believe that resolution for me, ‘cause I don’t.)
((I also hate writing codas. They make me think too much.))