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EP092: The Boy Who Yelled “Dragon!”

By Mike Resnick.
Read by Matthew Wayne Selznick (of Brave Men Run and Five Minute Memoir).
Discuss on our forums.
First appeared in Young Warriors, ed. Tamora Pierce & Josepha Sherman.
All stories by Mike Resnick.
All stories read by Matthew Wayne Selznick.

Now, this Land was the home of exceptionally brave warriors
and beautiful damsels (and occasionally they were the same person,
since beautiful damsels were pretty assertive back then). Each
young boy and girl was taught all the arts of warfare, and were
soon adept with sword, mace, lance, bow and arrow, dagger, and the
off-putting snide remark. They were schooled in horsemanship,
camouflage, and military strategy. They learned eye-gouging, ear-biting, kidney-punching, and — since they were destined to become
knights and ladies — gentility.

So successful was their training that before long enemy
armies were afraid to attack them. Within the borders of the Land
justice was so swift that there was not a single criminal left. It
would have been a very peaceful and idyllic kingdom indeed —
except for the dragons.

Rated G. It’s a children’s story. Not recommended for cynical audiences.

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Comments (8)

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  1. […] Matthew Selznick reads “The Boy Who Yelled ‘Dragon!’” by Mike Resnick in the most recent episode of Escape Pod, the science fiction podcast magazine. […]

  2. Jeff S says:

    Hey Steve,

    Love the podcast as always, but when did the website become escapepod.extraneous.org? Maybe this was addressed before, maybe I just don’t get it… I notice escapod.org still works.

    Unfortunately I don’t have time to browse the boards, only post quick comments here, but that’s been bothering me for a few weeks so I had to ask.

    Keep up the great work, Escape Pod

  3. Awesome story. Is it significant that the two really-kid accessible shows are about dragons? Maybe Mennenga has something in his admiration for the scaly fliers.

  4. Iain says:

    Great story which put a smile on my face on the way to work. I like the way Resnick takes apart all the conventions, scatters them around and then reassembles them.

  5. To quote my six year old: “Where’s Squonk?”

    A good effort, but the target audience isn’t as impressed as by other works that have already aired(?)(podded?) here on Escape Pod.

  6. Seainni says:

    This is a fine story for adults who like to read kids’ stories, maybe, but for actual kids–the original audience–it seems way too cutesy; or maybe it just talks down a little too much. You can almost see the narrator winking at the adults while he talks to the kids. You get the sense that he’s very self-consciously aware he’s telling a story to younger readers, rather than respectfully meeting them as equals on their own ground.