Tears of the Dragon



             Daria stepped out of the Zon and looked up and down the sidewalk for her sister, but Quinn was long gone. With a sigh of exasperation, Daria picked a direction and started walking. After a moment, she stuffed her hands into her jacket pockets and frowned slightly when she found something in one of them.

            She pulled out the small electronic device and almost chuckled. Jane used to call it my D-pod. Her smile faded at the thought of her former best friend, and she pushed the music player’s tiny speakers into her ears and turned it on. Half listening to the music, she continued trudging along the dimly lit street.


For too long now, there were secrets in my mind
For too long now, there were things I should have said
In the darkness . . . I was stumbling for the door
To find a reason – to find the time, the place, the hour

Waiting for the winter sun, and the cold light of day
The misty ghosts of childhood fears
The pressure is building, and I can’t stay away

I throw myself into the sea
Release the wave, let it wash over me
To face the fear I once believed
The tears of the dragon, for you and for me

Where I was, I had wings that couldn’t fly
Where I was, I had tears I couldn’t cry
My emotions frozen in an icy lake
I couldn’t feel them until the ice began to break

I have no power over this, you know I’m afraid
The walls I built are crumbling
The water is moving, I’m slipping away

I throw myself into the sea
Release the wave, let it wash over me
To face the fear I once believed
The tears of the dragon, for you and for me

Slowly I awake, slowly I rise
The walls I built are crumbling
The water is moving, I’m slipping away


            Daria glanced up and shook her head when she realized where she was. At some point during her wandering she’d crossed over from Dega Street and the bohemian part of Lawndale into the downtown business district. Her mother’s law office was right across the street from where she was standing, and the familiar red SUV was still parked in the otherwise empty lot.

            She crossed the street and entered the quiet building, frowning slightly at the unlocked door. She made her way through the labyrinthine hallways to her mother’s office and pushed the door open.

            “Damn it, Eric!” Helen exclaimed, looking up at the door from behind her desk. “Oh, Daria. What are you doing here, sweetie?”

            Daria pulled the ear buds free and pushed them back into her pocket while walking across the office. She dropped into the chair normally occupied by her mother’s secretary and tried to organize her thoughts.

            “Honey, what’s wrong?”

            “It’s Jane and Trent,” Daria said quietly. “Apparently Trent and Quinn have been . . . .”

            Daria’s comment was cut short when Helen’s phone began to ring.

            “Hello?” Helen snapped into the phone. “Dammit Jake, I’m busy . . . whatever it is, you deal with it.” She slammed the phone back down and then gave Daria a motherly smile. “I’m sorry, sweetie. Go on.”

            “Quinn got hurt emotionally, ok? I . . . I think I’ll let her tell you the details, alright?”

            “Ok, honey. But why do you look so upset?” Helen raised one hand to forestall Daria’s reply. “I know you girls have been getting along a lot better recently, but you look like somebody ran over your puppy.”

            “Jane hates me.”

            “Oh, my. This isn’t about Tom again, is it?”

            “No, I think it’s been brewing for a long time.” Daria stared at her boots for a moment, and then continued, “She called me a selfish prima-donna, and that I was rich and popular, and that I sabotaged her so she’d be dependent on me.”


            “She made me sound like Sandi Griffin. That’s the way she always treated Quinn, at least until Quinn knocked her off her high horse.”

            “This family certainly isn’t what I consider rich, but we are better off than the Lanes. I’m sorry to hear she feels that way, I was fond of Jane and her brother.”

            “What about that other stuff?”

            “Oh, Daria.” Helen paused with a sigh. “Your father and I have both worked very hard to provide for you and your sister. That’s something to feel proud about, not ashamed. Jane’s parents are . . . well . . . you know how they are.”

            “So, you’re saying that you think Jane is just jealous.”

            “Sweetie, Jane is a gifted and remarkable girl. But she, like you, still has some growing up to do. Give it time, Daria.”

            “What if she never speaks to me again?”

            “Then I say it’s her loss. You’re about to be heading off to college, it’s likely the two of you would have started drifting apart anyway,” Helen said.

            “We were going to be in Boston together.”

            “I’m sorry, sweetie.”

            “This is another one of those life things, isn’t it? One where we can’t predict or control what’s going to happen, so we’re supposed to tell ourselves that it’ll work out ok in the end.”

            “I’m afraid so. Growing up isn’t easy, Daria.”

            “It sucks.”

            “Often,” Helen said, giving her daughter a small smile. “I’m just wrapping up here, why don’t you hang around a few minutes and ride home with me?”


            “We’ll stop and pick up something to eat on the way home. Your father is probably talking to Quinn right now about her problems, and I’m sure everyone would appreciate some Chinese.”



Disclaimers: Stereo Hifi font is ©1997 by Cathy Davies. This story based on characters and situations created by Glenn Eichler and Susie Lewis. The Daria TV show is a trademark of MTV Networks, a division of Viacom International Inc. and is referenced here without permission, and without profit. Tears of the Dragon lyrics by Bruce Dickenson. Original characters and situations created by the author are under (K) – all rights reversed. Hail Eris.


            Author: the NightGoblyn