2. Claws - Elena Tiriel
I peer about, ensuring the Great Fire-beast's absence, before diving furtively deep into the Mountain. My corvine heart flutters at the huge heap of shiny treasures! Grasping a sparkling water-gem of bearable size, I flap rapidly, regaining speed. Only my best-concealed hidey-hole on Ravenhill will suffice for such a magnificent trophy! I soar toward the beckoning blue sky.... --- Smaug clasps the sooty adamant with clumsy talons, and takes wing gently to reenter his dungeon-hall. He knows -- from experience -- that once he restores the jewel to his bed and rests atop it, his crushing weight will crumble the clinging seared claw. *** "There he lay, a vast red-golden dragon, fast asleep.... Beneath him, under all his limbs and his huge coiled tail, and about him on all sides stretching away across the unseen floors, lay countless piles of precious things, gold wrought and unwrought, gems and jewels, and silver red-stained in the ruddy light." The Hobbit, Ch 12, Inside Information "Dragons may not have much real use for all their wealth, but they know it to an ounce as a rule, especially after long possession; and Smaug was no exception. He had passed from an uneasy dream ... to wide waking. ... Then he missed the cup! Thieves! Fire! Murder! ... His rage passes description -- the sort of rage that is only seen when rich folk that have more than they can enjoy suddenly lose something that they have long had but have never before used or wanted. His fire belched forth, the hall smoked, he shook the mountain-roots." The Hobbit, Ch 12, Inside Information "Caching - Crows will often cache, or store their food for later consumption when they have more food than they need. Crows have a very good memory and will go back to their food caches as the need arises. Crows have also been known to cache bright, shiny objects that they have found." www.zeebyrd.com/corvi29/glossary.html
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