The rainbow leaf roller is very tiny and looks more like an insect than a dragon, but T. P. insists it has all the characteristics of a proper dragon - egg-laying, fire-breathing and winged.
"Not to mention its DNA," he told me. "The positioning of the deoxyribose is very telling."
"Whatever," I said, "but I still think it looks more like a bug."
The leaf rollers are nectar-loving dragons, so the honeysuckle hedge is always buzzing with them, and they often visit the big blue morning glories beside the front gate. They do strange things with leaves - rolling them up and breathing out sticky fog to glue the edges together, then pushing them along the ground as if playing a game. T. P. thinks it may be a part of a mating ritual. Their coloring changes as they move; flushing green, blue, purple, gold or rose. The only bad thing about them is they have wicked spines and you have to be careful where you sit. I've been punctured in some very sensitive spots. The city trolls in the troll towns of Minglemist sell leaf rollers in cages for good luck, but they soon die in captivity. I haven't seen a troll yet, but a visit to a troll town is on my list of to-do's while in Minglemist. The closest troll town is Sparflea, across the Felkie Valley where we're staying, on the other side of the Gwyndle River. T. P. has forbidden me to go there, I guess because it's a wicked place. But sooner or later I'll find an excuse to go. I'm after information of a private sort. But more of that later....