After Lacey hugged her pets, and wished them luck, they
were off running - or flying - towards Sloth's citadel. No one came to meet
them - Sloth's troops were fighting off the other pets, and hadn't noticed the
five. They had to get to Sloth quickly - or else the rest of his troops would
attack, and they wouldn't stand a chance.
Just as they were about to break through the
entrance, it opened. In the doorway stood Dr. Sloth himself. But he wasn't holding
a ray gun... He was holding Jahbal's Staff.
"Nice of you to come yourselves, Guardians!"
said Sloth, laughing. "You've made it much easier on me!"
"Eat dirt!" shouted Lilly.
"Make them transform," said a voice.
The five pets looked around for who spoke, but
there was no one. Sloth's face changed dramatically.
"You said you were going to let me be!" shouted
Sloth to the Voice.
"I never let you alone!" said the Voice. "All
you've done is of my help! Now, make them transform!"
Sloth pointed the Staff at the five pets, the
orb facing them. Nothing happened, and the pets were left bewildered.
"How do I make them transform?!" shouted Sloth.
"Bring forth their anger!" screamed the Voice.
Sloth pointed the Staff at the army of pets.
Before Airiea, Arrowtak, Kita, Lilly, or Tylali could do anything, he had fired
a massive bolt of energy at the others. Both Sloth's army and the loyalist Neopians
fell to the ground. And with them... The pets saw in horror... Their owner.
"NO!" shouted Arrowtak. His flames began to
glow, and the markings actually burst into flame. Arrowtak's eyes grew white
and pupil-less, but he was not blind. White light poured from his eyes like
beams, and in a flash, everything changed... Where Arrowtak had been standing
stood a ball of flames, flickering and flashing in rage - except it had Lupe
"Arrowtak..." gasped Tylali.
Airiea screeched in anger. She began to change
similarly to Arrowtak. Vines sprouted from the bottoms of her feet, and crawled
and wrapped around her body in a second. There was another flash of light, and
there was a woodlike, vine and leaf covered creature in Eyrie form. The Guardian
of Life Magic.
Lilly screamed in horror of what Sloth had done.
"You'll pay!" she cried. And in an instant, it was no longer a Faerie Aisha
standing before him - floating in the air was a mixture of light and a mixture
of darkness all formed into Aisha shape. It glided down and stood where the
normal Lilly had been a second ago. The Guardian of Spectral Magic.
Kita burst out crying. "You can't have... You
killed... No!" And light began to run across her scales and skin, transforming
her into a creature made of lightning and electricity in Krawk form - KitaiMyou,
the Guardian of Shock Magic.
Tylali sobbed harder than she ever had before.
"No... no no no no..." she said. And as she cried, the places where the tears
touched the ground froze into ice. Her paws, as they covered her eyes, touched
her tears and froze in the same way. It ran up her body, freezing her completely.
Tylali looked up from her tears, and stared at Sloth - but she wasn't Tylali
any more. She was completely made of ice in Shoyru shape. She was the Guardian
of Ice Magic.
There the Guardians stood. They glared at Sloth
with utmost hatred.
"You'll pay for all the things you've done!"
said Arrowtak in a voice that sounded quite unlike his own. It sounded like
the very fire he was made with.
Sloth laughed. He pointed his Staff at them,
but before anything could happen, Sloth found himself choking. It was as if
an invisible hand were clenched around his throat.
"What the..." said Lilly, majestically even
in the circumstances.
Sloth dropped the Staff, and something started
to swirl around it. It was like smoke, and in it's shapeless form, lifted the
staff up. The smoke began to take form... At least some of it. It became the
gruesome face of an Eyrie sorcerer, evil and mad for power. Only the face had
shape, the rest was smoke that swirled around it like a spirit.
It turned and looked at Sloth. "You fool!" it
said. "Your entire success was of my doing. You were so easy to control... You
wanted power, and I gave it to you. You were ready to give up anything for it,
weren't you? Well, all I needed from you was the Guardians... And now I have
"Jahbal..." choked Sloth, grasping at his throat.
"Jahbal?!" repeated Tylali, but in a voice as
cold as ice that had no fear in it.
"And now you're mine," said the sorcerer.
Chapter 12: Gone is the Light, Return Has the Darkness
Jahbal laughed. "Yes, Guardians! It is I. I may have failed to capture you
last time, but this time I will not. You are weak and untrained. And now, your
powers shall belong to me. Sloth failed to see that you were my target... With
your powers combined alone, I can overtake this world and Neopia itself! All
shall kneel before Jahbal, conqueror of time and defeater of Light!"
The smoky Jahbal pointed the staff towards the
Guardians. They screamed as the magic from the Orb sucked them into itself...
A few moments later, the Guardians were in the Orb, swirling around as their
elements. Arrowtak was a small flame, Tylali a little snowflake, Lilly a dot
of light and shadow, Airiea a leaf, and Kita a tiny electric bolt.
"MWHA HA HA HA HA!" laughed Jahbal, somewhat
hysterically. He looked at the fallen pets - both Sloth's army and the Neopians.
The humans were unconscious. The only creature that had escaped the blast had
dropped down behind Jahbal.
"All of Neopia shall bow before me!" said Jahbal.
Coming from the Orb were tiny screams almost too small to hear... The horrible
torture of the Orb that the Guardians were enduring.
"I think not!" shouted Wraith. Just as Jahbal's
smoky face could turn around, Wraith had snatched the Staff out of his spirit
hands. He leapt out of Jahbal's grasp, and stood opposite him. Wraith held the
staff out against Jahbal, and growled lowly.
"Gone has the Light," recited Wraith. Jahbal
suddenly realized what Wraith was doing, and began gliding with great haste
towards the Zafara. But a shield of light surrounded Wraith from the Orb, and
protected him. Jahbal screeched and dove in and out of visibility, and every
now and then, Jahbal's face would be replaced with a claw trying to snatch the
"Return has the Darkness. Life lies near dead,
but must reawaken..."
The owners and pets that had been hit by the
blasts began to stir. They slowly got up, shaking their heads and wiping dirt
from their faces.
"What's going on?" whispered an owner quietly.
"The sacredness of two worlds broken. All at
fault of these worlds lies before me. Evil shadow, return to your place! Be
gone from here, in this time and space!"
Jahbal began to shriek. The orb grew with an
intense light, and the elements swirled around within. The owners and pets ran
over to Wraith, and watched as Jahbal's smoky being began to be sucked into
"What happens if Jahbal gets in there with my
pets?!" said Lacey, looking at Wraith.
Wraith didn't hear her, but his eyes were focused
on Jahbal and the Orb. With another sudden flash, the five pets were outside.
They lay on the ground, fainted and in their normal states. The smoky being
of Jahbal was now in the Orb, flailing around in anger.
"Stand back!" said Wraith. He held the staff
into the air, and brought it down smashing onto the ground. The orb shattered
as frail as glass, and with it Jahbal...
"Wouldn't that just release him?" asked an owner.
"No..." said Wraith. "Jahbal became part of
the staff... The staff is broken, and now he's gone."
"For good?" asked Lacey, bending down to her
"We can hope," replied Wraith.
The Gateway had been closed, Sloth's machine
destroyed, and Jahbal's Staff cemented into a place in the Hidden Tower. Sloth
had escaped again, and was hidden somewhere. Most likely he was plotting his
next plans, but they would defeat him again. Faerieland began to be rebuilt,
and so did many other places in Neopia and in the Real World. The only humans
that remembered what happened were the Neopians. For some reason, when Jahbal
had been destroyed, so had the humans' memories of Neopia and Neopets. Everyone
figured it was for the best anyway.
Fyora called another meeting in the Battledome.
The first part of it was congratulating the Guardians, and Lacey as well. They
were each given medals, and Fyora called them her "right hand colleagues." And
afterwards, the entire of Neopia was told of the heroic efforts of the Guardians.
Fyora also - to the surprise of everyone - approved the use of the Universal
Gateway. Fyora said that even if cons outweighed the pros, the pros were worth
much more. Neopets had to be allowed into the Real World - because it was the
movement of the Universal Gateways that had started the mess, and also what
had ended it. Fyora also warned that if anyone found out about the real Neopia
except for new Neopians, she would take away the Universal Gateways faster than
"Wraith destroyed the Orb."
WraithX decided to stay with Lacey and her pets.
After all, it was also Wraith's efforts that had saved the day. The Guardians
had many other adventures as well, but that's another story.