A Dragon's Eldunarí
This is a Brainstorming Entry.
I haven't thought of Eragon for awhile but recently the whole thing about the heart of hearts came to mind.
I always thought a dragon's eldunarí seemed like a cruel prison for the soul to me. The dragon is consciousness and can talk but do nothing else. If the dragon had at least been able to manifest as a ghost despite being tied to the eldunarorí or lived in its own personal heaven it may have been okay but I don't remember the books mentioning anything like that. I know one person said that it would be interesting if the eldunarorí could be implanted into the rider’s body so the dragon and human would share the body. However we don’t get any interesting concepts like in the Inheritance Cycle that instead they just boost current abilities of the rider/dragon.
I was watching a show called The Magicians which brought up a similar concept called a Shade. A shade is “a tiny beating heart in the very center of your being” or “the heart of the soul.” It can be separated from a living person and leaves them without a conscience. It seems to be the part of you that moves on after death or after removal and was shown to be in the underworld. A shade can also be torn apart but it wasn’t said if this completely destroyed the soul.
The hearts of Once Upon Time are also a note worthy because it allows you to control or kill someone. This is a higher stakes scenario. I know the dragons can be controlled in Eragon if someone has the heart of heart.
I find eldunarya to be a boring concept. I hate the idea of a bunch of eldunarí sitting around and eggs and the last 5 dragons not really being the last. I would love to change the concept in my adaption. I have looked everywhere to try to find a better use for them. I researched the uses of dragon body parts like drinking dragon blood to talk to animals or consuming bones that were ground to dust to heal. I have watched Monster Hunters to try to figure out the uses for the monster parts sold, although I couldn't find anything there. I am very curious to what others would do to make the concept of a heart of hearts interesting in the series.
Also I want to bring up shades from the Eragon version. A Shade in this series was defined as "a magic user and sorcerer possessed by a spirit or spirits, thus becoming a new creature." It has always seemed out of place, I don't remember spirits existing in the Inheritance Cycle. The only thing I can remember as being close would have been eldunarya which are basically dragon spirits. Also the series leans towards atheism being correct in its mythology and no spiritual realm after death unless your a dragon and save your consciousness.
* I really really really hated the concept of all these Eldunarí sitting around. It wasn't like the dead dragons added anything. It wasn't like someone freeing ghosts so they could move on to the afterlife or nothingness. I really preferred the idea of the 5 dragons left being the last for awhile. I wanted to feel like Saphira's only plotline of choosing a mate meant something. I felt it would have been okay if a lone wild dragon had survived and or eggs were found after galby's defeat so they wouldn't have been inbreed but not before.