What if it really were a dragon?

My Madagascar dragon tree. Photo by Sue Burke.

The genus of plants called Dracaena gets its name from the Ancient Greek word δράκαινα (drakaina): “female dragon.” It got that name because the red sap of Dracaena draco looked like dragon blood to the ancients. Dragon blood, it turns out, is useful.

Many houseplants fall within the Dracaena genus. Always popular for its beauty and easy care is the Dracaena marginata, also called the Madagascar dragon tree. One variety has dark red outer edges on its leaves with a green center; the Tricolor has green, pinkish, and yellowish stripes; and the Colorama has wide red edges.

None of them are real dragons, of course. But … what if they were dragons … dragons that were hiding? Dragons are magic, so they certainly could take the shape of a plant. And what if, sometimes, in the middle of the night, they changed back into real dragons?

You’ve never seen that happen — and there might be a magical reason for that. When you see a dragon in your living room, the dragon uses its magic to gently and thoroughly remove that memory from your mind. But a dragon has a sense of justice, and it wants to reward you for your care of the plant. So it offers a deal: it will remove the memory of its true self, and, if you wish, it will also remove one additional memory of your choice. There must be something you wish you could forget.

What would you choose?

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