Crossover Character Interview: Charon

Zima carrying Anne on the right. Lightning bolt. Charon, an assassin, and dragon on right.

Zima and Cappa from The Z-Tech Chronicles interview Charon from Dragon Assassin

Like most interviews, this one went in a completely different direction than I imagined. I'm only glad the two assassins didn't end up killing each other, although they might have if Cappa hadn't stepped in.

Where did things go wrong? Read on.


ZIMA: Welcome to—

CHARON: (reaches for the pistol inside her jacket)

ZIMA: (draws two pistols before Charon can blink) Hold, I am not your enemy. I wish only to talk.

CHARON: Right. How did I get here? Who sent you? Are you Guild?

ZIMA: An inter-dimensional transportation device; Cappa sent me because she believed you would be more willing to speak with someone of your own profession; and no.

CHARON: And what profession is that?

ZIMA: (head-cocks) You do not know?







CAPPA: (walks in and huffs) Egad! Zima, she’s just as infuriatingly tight-lipped as you. Left to your own devices, this would be the most boring interview in history. (Sits across from Charon) Hi, I’m Cappa. You must be Charon. I’m delighted to meet you!


CAPPA: Seriously? How often does one get to speak with a bona fide dragon! Your human form is simply divine, by the—

CHARON: (begins morphing into a blue serpentine dragon)

CAPPA: Whoa, whoa! No need for that, my dear. Besides, you wouldn’t find Zima or me particularly tasty. A little too much iron for your diet, I think.


CAPPA: That… might be the most pathetic roar I’ve ever heard. Or are you trying to speak?


CAPPA: Gee, thanks for clearing that up. (sighs) I never thought I’d resort to this, but… Zima, a little help here?

ZIMA: I suggest an immediate retreat.

CAPPA: Retreat? You?

ZIMA: She appears to be a dragon.

CAPPA: You knew that coming in here!

ZIMA: I acknowledged your claim, but I did not believe it. (edges toward the door) Victory is not assured. Send the creature back. Now.

CHARON: Rawrar?

CAPPA: Sweetie, we don’t speak dragonese, so if you’d like to chat, you’re going to need to change into something less toothy. And if I may suggest… do it slowly. Zima tends to shoot things that startle her. Mark once bought her a jack-in-the-box as a gag gift, and let me tell you, all the king’s horses didn’t have a prayer of putting that poor toy back together.

CHARON: (snorts) (shrinks to human form)

CAPPA: Ah, much better! And might I say… different. Wasn’t your skin a darker color when you arrived?

ZIMA: And your breasts larger.

CAPPA: Zima! Really…

CHARON: This is my native human form. I’m Mongolian by birth.

CAPPA: Well you look lovely regardless of cup size. (glares at Zima) And thank you for opening up. Being an alternate universe, this is a safe space, so you can tell us anything without worry of it slipping out. Okay?

CHARON: Not remotely.

CAPPA: Oh joy, this is going to be one of those interviews. But when life gives you lemons, make limoncello, I always say!

ZIMA: You do not.

CAPPA: Hush. Anyhoo… Charon, tell us more about this shape-shifting ability that seems to thumb its nose at the laws of physics. How does it work? What else can you change into?

CHARON: Is she always this perky?

ZIMA: Yes, and persistent. I have found the best way to quickly end the conversation is to answer her questions as simply as possible.

CAPPA: That’s why you only give me one-word answers? Why didn’t you tell me!

ZIMA: You did not ask.

CAPPA: I… (runs a hand down her face) We’re going to have a long talk about social etiquette later. Charon?

CHARON: Don’t know how it works, except that it takes a lot of energy. The only reason I’m in my natural form right now is because I didn’t have the stamina to change into anything else.

CAPPA: Can you change into animals?

CHARON: Only humans, but almost any human I can imagine.

ZIMA: Males?

CHARON: Only females.

CAPPA: Too bad, that would have been fun!

CHARON: (squirms uncomfortably)

CAPPA: Ahem. So, how about that dragon form? Can you fly? I didn’t see any wings.

CHARON: No, I’m a water dragon. Half-dragon, actually. I swim faster than anything in the sea.

ZIMA: What is the difference between a half-dragon and a full one?

CHARON: Can’t say. Never met a full one, thankfully.

CAPPA: Thankfully? Now we’re getting to the good stuff!

ZIMA: Are they hostile?

CHARON: Yeah, from what my mom told me. I’ve been in hiding since… well, forever. Part of the reason I became…

CAPPA: An assassin?

CHARON: How did you know?

CAPPA: Unless you’re also a quantum physicist, you wouldn’t understand. So how did being a dragon—er, half-dragon, sorry, lead you to Zima’s craft?

CHARON: Might be the same reason as hers.

ZIMA: Exceedingly unlikely.

CHARON: Fair. A hundred and seventy years ago, when I was a child, I—

CAPPA: One hundred and seventy? You don’t look a day over twenty-five!

CHARON: Eh, thanks? Anyway, a… an incident at home led to a few deaths.

ZIMA: By your hand?

CHARON: All but one. I discovered then that my half-dragon nature gave me an advantage, especially back before everyone owned a gun. Assassins are also secretive. So I threw in with the local guild and never looked back.

ZIMA: Do you enjoy it?

CHARON: I’ve become numb to it. People need killing. Bad people. I have the aptitude and need a low-profile income. It works.

ZIMA: (leans forward) Do you enjoy it?

CHARON: I… no, I don’t. If I didn’t have to hide from dragons and humans alike, I might have become a fisherman. Do you enjoy it?

ZIMA: Not anymore.


CAPPA: Okay, getting a little too close to the danger zone there. Let’s pull up before we get sucked into the black hole of Zima’s past. This is about you, Charon! Tell me, do you have a boyfriend?


CAPPA: Girlfriend, then?


CAPPA: Look, please ignore what Zima said about short answers. I want details—especially around this—and I will use every technique in my extensive repertoire to get them. So are we doing this the easy way? Or do I need to get all up in your head like a beekeeper and smoke them out?

ZIMA: She is not our prisoner. If she does not wish to speak on this topic, then we should not force her.

CAPPA: That’s a one-eighty from the girl who pulled a gun on an interviewee who didn’t answer fast enough!

CHARON: I didn’t expound because there’s nothing to tell. I’m not in a relationship. Never been in one before, and never intend to. End of story.

CAPPA: Fine, but dragons do mate, right?

CHARON: Guess so. Mom had me, after all.

CAPPA: And you have working female bits, don’t you?

CHARON: Yeah. So?

CAPPA: So? So? Haven’t they ever tingled or driven you to… I don’t know, do something with someone?

CHARON: (squints) You don’t have any idea what you’re talking about, do you?

ZIMA: She does not.

CAPPA: Of course I do! Or, I’ve read about it, anyway, but that doesn’t matter. What I really want to know is how dragons do it! D-do relationships, that is. As a student of physiology, I know it drives much of what humans do and how they behave. I just can’t understand how you’ve gone almost two centuries without so much as a date!

CHARON: Maybe I’m too young. Maybe that’s a broken part of my half-dragon nature. All I know is that I’m okay on my own, and okay to continue like this. And that it seems to bother you a lot more than it does me.

CAPPA: But… Okay, fine, dash my romantic dragon fantasies against your asexual wall. And no, there’s nothing wrong with that, I just… oh, I was hoping for something juicy. Guess I’ll just have to cling to the “too young” theory and hope you’ll “awaken” sometime in the future.

CHARON: (shrugs)




CAPPA: Crap, now I’m doing it, too.

CHARON: Can I go home? My bath is waiting.

CAPPA: Of course.

CHARON: (disappears in an electric flash)

ZIMA: You did not say goodbye.

CAPPA: She wouldn’t remember it anyway. Do you… really dislike when I try to engage you in conversation?

ZIMA: It is uncomfortable, but…

CAPPA: What?

ZIMA: But I believe it would be even less comfortable if you did not try.

CAPPA: Aw, thanks! Actually, I’m glad you said that, because I just bought a new karaoke machine that we can… What are you doing?

ZIMA: Searching for the dimensional activation switch. I prefer to take my chances against the dragon.

CAPPA: You know it doesn’t work that way. Come on, I’ll sing you a few of my favorite songs. We can do a duet!

ZIMA: Charon, if you can hear me, I would like to open an emergency contract on a karaoke machine.

CAPPA: I bet we can also convince Charlie and Mark to sing bass. It’ll be great!

ZIMA: Charon, correction: destroy everything in the vicinity. I shall pay triple the going rate.

CAPPA: Har har. Quit your bellyaching and help me decide what to order from the sushi restaurant. Can’t sing without sushi. And sake! Oh, this will be epic!

ZIMA: (whimpers)