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  • dandewes

A Gassy Tummy

Boris had always been a fairly restless sleeper. The problem was his dreams. They were always about something utterly horrific, such as vegetarianism, or sipping cocktails in the sun on a tropical beach, and worse! Now he was moaning and groaning in his sleep. In his dream, he was being tormented by a clove of garlic the size of a horse. It had a pair of skinny arms and legs, and a wicked smile on its garlicky face, and was chasing Boris, laughing, hands outstretched! Soon another garlic monster appeared, and another, and another! Boris was done for. “I am doomed!” he cried, collapsing on the ground, as the insane garlicky laughter reached a deafening pitch. “Heeeeelp! Heeeeelp! HEEEEEEL-!”

He woke up in a panic with a BANG! “OW!” His head hit something hard. “Ooof! Stupid coffin!” he muttered. “Ugh, vat a dream,” he sighed.

He rubbed his forehead, then turned himself into a small misty cloud, and drifted through the cracks in the lid of the coffin in which had been sleeping. He turned back into his human shape, stretched, and pulled apart the blood-red curtains. “Aaaaah,” he said with a toothy smile as he looked approvingly up at the full moon. “Tonight is going to be a bloody good night!” Singing to himself, he began to dress. “Oh vat a beautiful evening” - he put on his crisp black suit - “oh vat a beautiful night” - he fastened his black cloak - “oh vat a vanderful feeling” - and pulled on his black boots - “fresh blood from a beautiful bite!”

There was something different about Boris. I would have imagined you’d have guessed by now.

It’s obvious! He hated garlic, slept in a coffin, woke up at night, wore a black cloak, could transform into a misty cloud, spoke in a Russian accent, fantasized about fresh blood. Surely you must know! Boris was a VAMPIRE!

Well, learning to be a vampire! He’d only recently begun vampiring, after being bitten a few decades ago by a more senior vampire, perhaps the most notorious vampire of all – the dreaded Count Dracula, who’d been terrorizing the poor people of Transylvania for centuries. Boris, on the other hand, was still learning the ropes. He needed a lot more practice if he wanted to become a count!

Let’s take hair, for example. A vampire’s hair should be slicked back over his head, perhaps with hair gel or mousse, resulting in an impeccably neat, gleaming round head. Boris didn’t get this quite right. He would typically wake up, get dressed, slick his hair back and, quite satisfied with his villainous appearance, he’d step outside into the windswept gloom of Transylvania. He would then stride through the streets, leering menacingly at passers-by, who seemed to be more amused by him than scared! You see, vampires can’t see their reflections in mirrors. If Boris could have seen his reflection in a shop window, he would have been devastated to see that his hair had been blown into a wild, soccer ball-like shape by the wind, and then held in place by his hair gel! To make matters worse, his evil laugh was not quite the ”HAH HAH HAH HAH HAAAAAH!” of Dracula, but more of a “heeeHEEEEEE!” of a deranged mouse!

Despite this, Boris was still a vampire, not a very good one, but a vampire nevertheless. And now, he was hungry for blood! He stood proudly at the window of his castle, dramatically whipped his cloak around himself, and then turned into a bat! He fluttered away to town to begin the hunt.

In his search for a victim, he flew into bedroom windows – “too thin!” - into Italian restaurants “Ugh! Too much garlic!” - into the carpenter's workshop – “Pah! Too many sharp pieces of wood!” - and then into a dark alley, where he saw a middle-aged exotic looking gentleman, slowly walking with his stick. “Perfect!” thought Boris, and transformed into human form in front of the man. He wasted no time, raising his hands up to the night sky, mouth open in an ‘evil’ laugh, revealing two, needle-like vampire teeth while shouting, “Prepare to meet your doom!”

Now before I describe the gruesome details of what happens next, I think it’s necessary for me to tell you about another kind of magical creature – Dragons! I’m sure most of you are keen readers and therefore probably know a good deal about dragons, but for those of you that don’t, you might need to consult an expert on all things supernatural, magical, mythical and monstrous. Lucky for you, that happens to be me!

Dragons are fearsome, huge winged reptiles, incredibly intelligent and armed with vicious teeth. Their most deadly weapon, however, is their breath. Some, like the White Dragon, breathe freezing ice, the Black Dragon breathes noxious acid, but the most famous of all is the Red Dragon, which breathes fire! Dragons mostly spend their time terrorizing townsfolk, capturing princesses and barbecuing valiant knights in shining armour. A little known fact about dragons is that many of them can shape-shift - they can transform their body into that of a human.

Back to Boris the vampire! That middle-aged man he was about to feast on? Well, he was none other than a Red Dragon in human form! And sure enough, his nostrils flared flames as he transformed into a huge, red, scaly, muscly, ANGRY dragon! The dragon roared, opened its mouth wide enough to reveal rows of deadly, razor-sharp teeth, and blew out a terrible, monumental ball of fire!

Any normal human would have been reduced to a smoking pile of ash, but Boris was a vampire. He could turn himself into a misty cloud, which is exactly what he did! The flame vanished. The dragon had given it his all, breathing out every last bit of air in its lungs, but there was no pile of ash! Disappointed, it breathed in again, sucking in the cloud of mist, which was Boris!

Boris had thought himself very crafty and transformed himself back into human shape. “Vere am I?” he asked. “It’s so dark in here…….slimy……..stinky……….” He was in ……...the dragon’s stomach! “Oh no!” he cried, “How could I haf been so stupid!”

He tried banging on the walls of the dragon’s tummy. Nothing happened. He bit into it. Again nothing. “I am doomed,” he sobbed, “this is the end of me. Boris, the Fearsome, slowly digested inside a dragon’s stomach!” He collapsed pathetically to wait for his sorry end.

His clothes had just begun to dissolve in the stomach juices when he had an idea!

“Maybe, just maybe…. “he thought, “I can make this dragon burp. If I can just make his stomach as upset as possible, he vill burp me out, and I vill be free!”

Boris began to scratch around in the stomach for anything that might help. “A princess’s crown - no good!……...a sheep skeleton – forget it!……….a veelbarrow? Vat kind of dragon is zis?!? He continued to desperately scratch around until his hand felt something. “AHA!” He had found a suit of armour and a sword!

“Clearly some unlucky knight vas no match for zis dragon! But I, HAH! I vill escape! I vill leave zis dragon ze vay I came in! I vill make zis dragon make ze world’s biggest BURP !!!”

He picked up the sword and with all his might, plunged it into the walls of the dragon's stomach.

The walls of the dragon's tummy clenched tightly. Boris was instantly sucked through some dark, slimy, stinky tubes somewhere inside the dragon. He was whooshed this way and that, but for some reason, his escape back through the dragon’s mouth was taking longer than expected. Eventually, with a loud BOOM! he was thrown out of the dragon, smashed against a wall, and collapsed in a heap. Exhausted, he looked up, expecting to see the dragon’s jaws coming for him! Instead, he was looking at the dragon’s tail!

“No!” he gasped. He looked down again! His tattered clothes were covered in a stinky, slimy substance! “No!” he cried again in disgust, as he realized that he had not escaped through the dragon’s mouth. “NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!” he had come out the OTHER SIDE!!!!

Boris had escaped the dragon. He wasn’t proud of how he’d done it, but he’d done it. And for the rest of his days, no matter how he washed and scrubbed and smothered himself in perfume, he was forevermore the smelliest vampire in Transylvania!


  1. What was Boris’s problem with sleeping?

  • A. He dreamed of drinking blood

  • B. His dreams were scary

  • C. He couldn’t sleep at all

  • D. He had nightmares about garlic

  1. What did Boris hate that made his dreams scary?

  • A. Cocktails on a tropical beach

  • B. Vegetables

  • C. Garlic

  • D. Sunshine

  1. What did Boris turn into to escape the coffin?

  • A. A bat

  • B. A cloud

  • C. A mist

  • D. A wolf

  1. Why was Boris disappointed when he tried to attack the middle-aged man?

  • A. The man had a weapon

  • B. The man turned out to be a dragon

  • C. The man was too fast

  • D. The man was too strong

  1. How did Boris escape from the dragon's stomach?

  • A. He made the dragon laugh

  • B. He found a sword and armor and fought his way out

  • C. He turned into mist and floated out

  • D. He persuaded the dragon to let him go


  1. D. He had nightmares about garlic

  2. C. Garlic

  3. B. A cloud

  4. B. The man turned out to be a dragon

  5. B. He found a sword and armor and fought his way out

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