By Dr. Lissa Goins
The Nuances of Dwarven
Speaker, unknown Silver Dragon
Dialogue transcribed by Adventurer UptheHill while held in captivity
Now, in addition to a dragon’s superior intellect, which I have already expounded on in detail, dragons also possess a superior set of physical senses. For some reason, this does not seem to be common knowledge. Most beings who walk on two legs fear the great and powerful true dragons for our incredible size and physical might, and yet these same adventurers hold the delusion that we cannot hear them sneaking through the hoard entrance.
In fact, on the topic of a true dragon’s most incredible senses, I have only in the last hundred years had the pleasure of hosting a Dwarven settlement at the base of this very mountain. I woke up immediately upon hearing their tiny pickaxes chipping away at the mountain base, but rather than flying into a rage and blowing smoke into their hidey-holes, I was distracted by the heretofore unknown language they were speaking.
Apparently, despite Dwarven runes being a mark of masterwork on every door and bit of worked metal throughout the land, the spoken language is considered proprietary to the Dwarves themselves. In simpler terms; outsiders don’t hear Dwarven, outsiders don’t speak Dwarven.
This little rule was rather circumvented when they took up residence well within earshot of this humble and magnificent Dragon.
Where was I? Ah, yes, the subtle nuances of the Dwarven language were captivating for all the years the Stone-Biter’s Clan lived in the subterranean tunnels at my doorstep. While Dwarves tend to be terse and unfriendly-seeming when speaking another language, this actually stems from the fact that their own Speak is verbose and full of family lineage cussing.
For example, the Head Tunnel Master’s grandfather once got so frustrated while digging a spectacularly difficult and stubborn bit of tunnel, that upon breaking directly into a Formian Slaver Colony the grandfather simply allowed himself to be captured, ate lunch, and then proceeded to kill the leaders, chain the workers together, and then rode a Formian-pulled sled onto his wife’s doorstep and declared the tunnel finished.
The Head Tunnel Master tends to swear by his grandfather’s sled frequently. To outsiders, whenever his sacred lineage would be mentioned, he would replace the swearing and ranting with an extremely disgruntled and unsatisfying grunt.
The varied and captivating language is undeniably distinct for each Clan of Diggers, and I would certainly expound on the Stone-Biter’s Clan foibles in the most complete detail for your listening enjoyment, however, in my eagerness to converse fluently in such a guarded language, I startled my houseguests into much fleeing and swearing, which while enlightening, was hardly the cultivated exchange I had been seeking to complete my own personal fluency.
I hope to meet some more Most Masterful Dwarves in the future. I am certain that the excellently placed and metal-rich mountain in my possession will surely call a few to visit sometime in the inevitable future.