Name:  Vasilis

Type:  Noon Stalker

Birthdate:  Born on Dec 19 in Zandadorian year of 3302 during Calvin the Collector’s Reign

Current Age:  897

Status:  Enslaved by King Omri

Residence:  Lives in the Dragon Quarters below the castle in the capital city of Japheth 

Personality:  Callous, Merciless, Rude, Loner       

Favorite Food:  Antelope

Biggest Fear:  Ants; he has nightmares about disturbing ant hills and becoming covered with the insects

Unique Fact:  Oldest living dragon

Eli appears in The Dragon Collector.  The following is an excerpt from the book that highlights his first appearance.

“Disobedience is not tolerated in my kingdom,” Omri said.  “We are here today to remind you of that fact and to remind you what happens when you rebel.”

Omri motioned to the trumpeters.  They played three sharp, unnerving notes.

               “When you rebel, my Stalkers deliver justice,” Omri said.  “Today that honor falls to Vasilis, my Noon Stalker!”

               The Dark King turned and pointed to the sky in the direction from which he had flown in on moments ago.  The crowd began to murmur as the golden dragon appeared in the distance.

Javan had to take action before the dragon arrived.  He stepped forward, but Astor caught his arm.  “Not yet.”

Micah moved to the far front corner of the stage while Omri moved to the corner just above where Javan stood.  That left Esmeralda all alone at the front and center of the stage, easy prey for the hungry Noon Stalker on his way.

The dragon passed the castle walls. 

Javan looked to Astor.  He shook his head, telling him to wait. 

Wide-eyed and anxious, Javan held himself back and watched the dragon float over the crowd.  Just as it was about to reach the stage, Astor let go of Javan’s arm.  “Now.”

“Finally,” Javan said.  He sprinted the five steps to the column in front of him and touched the stone seconds before the dragon’s claws snatched Esmeralda.

               The stone Javan expected to feel as he pressed his palms against the column wasn’t stone at all.  It was actually a soft, malleable surface that lit up and vibrated when he touched it.  A perfect mold of his hands remained once he stepped back.  The vibrations stopped but the glow lingered, and a vertical line of four triangles the size of dragon scales appeared above his handprints.

               “Halt!”  The Dark King ordered Vasilis to a hovering standstill above Esmeralda and peered over the edge.  “Who touched the column?”

               The people around Javan jumped back, sweeping Astor with them.  How they were able to create a fifteen foot berth around him in an instant in the midst of such a packed crowd amazed him.  And spoke volumes about the fear this king instilled in his people.

No one had stood up to this man by daring to compete in the Battle for the Throne in centuries.  With the Dark King’s gaze fixed on Javan, Javan began to understand why.  An obnoxious form of power-hungry evil emanated from the Dark King, and Javan was tempted to join the quivering crowd behind him.  A glance at his mother, however, encouraged him to stand his ground. 

Javan adjusted his hat, cleared his throat and said, “I did.”

               Think I’ll eat him, too, just for disturbing my meal, Vasilis said.

I would, Serenity said.  As lean as he is, he won’t be very filling, though.

Doesn’t matter.  He’s young.  He’ll have a nice crunch to him.

Hearing the telepathic dragon conversation unnerved Javan further.  They were, after all, discussing his demise.  But he didn’t want to clue them in to the fact that he could understand them.  As long as he was able to eavesdrop, he might be able to pick up some interesting information about dragons or the Dark King that could provide an advantage for him in the competition.

Nevertheless, he couldn’t resist looking up into the angry eyes of the half-golden dragon as he floated just above the heads of those standing on the stage.  The view into the two large black pools of hatred sent shivers down Javan’s spine.  He didn’t detect one ounce of kindness in the dragon’s heart, but maybe that was because they were meeting at the height of its feeding time and it wanted to make a meal out of him.

Vasilis snorted a puff of smoke in Javan’s direction, then began making slow circles above the people in Stalker Square while awaiting his master’s command to commence his meal.