‘The Squashbuckler Diaries’ are the daily tales of Joy Shelley’s Life in the Dream. The ‘Lost in Dreams’ books will tell the story of what happens to her at ages 6, 9, 12, 15, and so on. The diaries tell us what happens before, after, and between the books.

#63: Justin’s Dark Mood #3: Joy’s Angry Face

After Dragon Little bit Dragon Father’s leg with all the strength of her four-and-a-half-year-old jaw, Dragon Father screamed in pain. 

He looked down at her in what seemed like shock. 

I cannot know what was in his mind, but I have seen enough dreamers to believe that it was not just the surprise. Dreamers do not feel pain in the Dream. They are not used to it. In all the adventures I have seen Dragon Father and Dragon Little have - and almost every day ist a battle against villains - Dragon Father has never felt pain. Scratches, burns, and other small scrapes have never really seemed to hurt him. It was his dream, after all, it was 

But though Dragon Little was in his dream, she was created from his dream. She was not created by anyone’s dream. She was real. When she touched you, as she hugged my head many times, you will feel it, even if you are a dreamer... or even if you are a dragon. 

I believe Dragon Father’s anger came from the fact that his pain was so big and not just by Dragon Little’s vengeful act. 

“That,” he bent down to snarl at her, already in a bad and uncontrollable mood. “Hurt! Me!” 

Dragon Little looked up at him and her entire face snarled at him. “Grrrrrrrr!”

She bent down and bit him again.

“Aaaaaah!” He shouted in real pain and jumped back. “What are you doing! Stop it! Why are you behaving like an animal?”

Dragon Little’s face was indeed like an animal, as she squeezed every muscle in her face and growled at him: “Grrrrrr!”

Dragon Father pointed a finger at her. “I have no time for this! I can’t be a parent now! I don’t have time to teach you how to be a person! I have to beat the bad gu--I have to--You take so much time getting out of bed that half the day is gone, and even then--” He was clearly still as angry and blind to his surroundings as he was when he began this dream. I have never seen him quite so out of control in the two and a half years I had known him until this point. 

“Grrrrrr!” his daughter growled in response. 

He grabbed his head in frustration, turned around. “I’m done! I’m not doing this! I’ll just spend the day here! Don’t follow me!” And he stormed down the stairs that led to the Infinite Prison at the belly of Bonny’s Revenge

Tomorrow I will tell you what happened then.

—Told by The Red Dragon


#64: Justin's Dark mood #4: Parenting Advice from a Murderer

Slightly Sick