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Savak: The Medallion - Part Eight

by zephandolf


"Savak!" Jearii exclaimed. Her voice was distant and echoed in Savak's mind. "Savak, wake up!"

     Savak opened his eyes to find himself, yet again, surrounded by clouds. The Light Faerie, Jearii, stood a few paces away, but she was shrouded in mist. Savak tried to move, but he couldn't.

     "Jearii?" Savak said. "Why can't I move?"

     "Savak, wake up!" Jearii repeated. "Savak, you're in danger!"

     "Danger?" Savak asked. "What danger?"

     "Savak! Use the medallion!"

     "What? How?" Savak asked.

     "Only when you unlock their minds will you be safe!"

     "Unlock? Whose minds? What are you talking about?"

     Jearii's voice started to fade. "Wake up Savak!"

     "Jearii! Don't go!" Savak cried. Even as he said it, the clouds faded, and the world around him darkened. Slowly, the vision of Faerie Land faded back to the factory yard, where the Lupe that was attacking Savak was moving in to finish the job! Realizing what was happening, Savak managed to scramble out of the way just as the Lupe snapped his jaws where Savak's neck once was.

     Scrambling to his feet, Savak regained his senses. Everything flooded back to him. He knew what he had to do.

     Concentrating, Savak focused his attention on the Lupe that was attacking him. He concentrated on a single range of thoughts: disentangle, release, freedom, anything that opposed the binding and control that gripped the Lupe's mind.

     Savak felt his fur stand on end, not as a reaction to hostility, but in reaction to the energy coming from the medallion! As Savak focused the power, he could see the dark magic that was controlling the Lupe surround him in an aura, a shadow that shrouded him. Savak concentrated on the one Lupe, trying to release his mind. The Lupe, who was turning to advance on Savak again stopped in his tracks, conflicted in his decisions. The aura that surrounded him was dissipating. Eventually, it disappeared altogether, leaving a free, but disoriented Lupe.

      Satisfied, and a little tired, Savak turned to the rest of the Lupes. Concentrating, he tried to break the ties to all of them. At first, there was no effect. But, eventually, it was the same thing. The Lupes fought to free their minds, the auras dissipated, and they were free.

     All but one.

     Savak's energy was draining, but he could still see the aura surrounding the Lupe that jumped him. It was far more powerful, as if Kaylee was putting everything into him!

     The Lupe hit him hard. Savak fell to the ground, slamming his shoulder. He tried to get up, but his foreleg wouldn't hold his weight. It hurt when he moved it. He watched in horror as the Lupe rounded and dashed at him.

     Then Lukas dashed in, bowling over the Lupe. Several other Lupes gathered at Savak's side, watching the wayward Lupe cautiously.

     "Leave him alone!" Lukas yelled. "Get out of here!"

     "Savak, are you alright?" Heysha asked, dashing over to him.

     Savak didn't reply. He was still watching Lukas.

     "Go on! Get going!" the Kougra commanded, moving to drive off the Lupe.

     "Lukas, wait!" Savak cried, hoisting himself up on three legs. "That Lupe is being controlled, like the others were!"

     "What?" Lukas asked. "Controlled? How do you know?"

     Savak ignored Lukas's questioning, and Heysha's urging for him to keep still, and he limped up to the Lupe. The Lupe's expression was fierce, but his eyes were vague. Savak watched the Lupe carefully with a guarded hostility.

     "What's this all about, Kaylee?" he asked. He knew full well that that shadow Lupess could hear him through this Lupe's ears, just like she could see through his eyes, and speak through his mouth. He was certain Kaylee wasn't about to talk to him herself.

     A smirk crossed the Lupe's face. "What else would it be for but domination?" the Lupe said. "You may have won this battle, young Lupe. But you have not won the war! We will meet again, on a different battlefield!"

     Almost immediately, the dark aura surrounding the Lupe fell away, and intelligence flowed back into the bewildered Lupe's eyes.

     Savak sighed with relief and looked to Lukas. The Kougra was eyeing him suspiciously. "Savak," he said. "What in the world just happened?"

     Slowly, Savak looked through the crowd of Lupes and found Murgoh, who nodded to him in approval. Reassured by the former leader, Savak turned back to Lukas. "It's a long story, Lukas. And now that you've seen what these medallions can do, I suppose there's no harm in telling you about them." He paused, looking to the gathered Lupes. "I'll tell you on the way to the plains. These Lupes need to get back home, and I don't want to stay here another second."

     * * *

     It was a dreary homecoming for the Lupes. They were all happy to be home, free once again to roam the plains. It was only that the weather didn't agree with them. It was a light rain, but the clouds blocked out the rising sun, denying the ground below the full effect of its light.

     As the pack scattered, each to his or her own territory, Lukas, Heysha, Murgoh and Savak sat atop one of the hills, watching the various packs diminish among the rolling mounds of grass. All but one pack left. Gerthen, Kosek, and Jessie all waited at the bottom of the hill for Savak to take the lead.

     "All the Lupes are free again," Lukas said. "You rescued more than just your pack, Savak. You should be proud."

     "I didn't do it alone," Savak said. "I thank you for your help, Lukas."

     "And what about me?" Heysha asked.

     Savak turned to the young Lupess. "What did you do?" he asked playfully, dodging a cuff across the ears. "Alright, I'm kidding. Thanks for your support, Heysha. I'm not sure I would have lasted so long in Jason's home without you."

     Lukas smirked. "Naa, you were right the first time. She didn't do a thing."

     "Come over here and say that, furball!" Heysha demanded.

     "I can take you anytime, princess!"

     "Alright you two," Murgoh said, looking to the sky. "Lukas, you should take Heysha home. You could get the sneezles in this weather if you're not used to the outdoors."

     Lukas nodded. "You're right. Come on, Heysha. Good luck, Savak. And take care of Jessie."

     "And your shoulder," Heysha added.

     "Goodbye, you two," Savak called back, wondering if he'd ever see them again. As they walked off, Savak made a move to descend to the waiting pack.

     "Just a moment, Savak," Murgoh said. "There's something I must tell you."

     "Yes? What is it, Murgoh?" Savak asked, sitting down again.

     Murgoh looked down to the pack and sighed deeply before continuing. "I've lived a long and colorful life out here on the plains," he began. "This adventure has taken a lot out of me. I feared it would be my last journey, but because of your actions, I am now able to choose which path will be my last."

     The fur along Savak's spine stood on end. It wasn't the medallion this time. "What are you saying, Murgoh?"

     "I'm old, Savak," he said. "Far older than I'd ever expected to be. This is another effect that the medallion has on you. The longer you wear it, the longer your life will be stretched. I'm afraid I've been stretched a little too far for comfort." He looked down at the pack again. "I've already spoken with each of the pack on the way here. You are the last to hear this. I'm leaving the pack to take a final journey, and I've often felt comfortable on my own. I don't wish to make my passing hard on anyone."

     "B-but you can't leave!" Savak said. "I-I need your help leading the pack!"

     "Gerthen knows as much about leading the pack as I do," Murgoh said. "He's been my friend and companion since he was a pup." He hesitated a moment, then leaned closer. "There is something else. Something I need to tell you, though I was never sure how I could."

     There was a pause as Savak looked into Murgoh's eyes. "I know what you're going to say."

     "You do?" Murgoh asked, a little surprised.

     "You're my father, aren't you?"

     Murgoh looked straight at Savak without flinching. A smile crossed his face, and pride filled his eyes. "How did you know?" he asked.

     "You always gave me subtle hints when I was growing up, but I paid little attention to them," Savak explained. "But then, when Lukas recognized my scent, and then your scent, and then he recognized Jessie on sight." He paused with a little smile. "And there's your red fur."

     Murgoh nodded. "You're a smart Lupe, I'll give you that," he said. "This is good. You'll need that kind of intelligence for the trials that await you."

     "You really have to go?" Savak asked.

     Murgoh sighed. "We've been through this before, Savak. My life's journey is at an end. But yours has barely begun. Join the pack. Lead the pack." He gave Savak a lick between his ears. "Goodbye, son. I'm proud of you."

     With this final farewell, Murgoh descended the hill, starting his final journey, east to the sea. Savak watched the old red Lupe for a long time, even as he disappeared behind the hills. Finally, he stood again and limped back to the pack.

     "It's about time you came down here," Kosek said.

     "Quiet, Kosek," Gerthen snapped. "Murgoh has left us, hasn't he?"

     "Yes," Savak replied. For a moment, he was glad for the rain. It disguised the tears that were forming in his eyes. He looked over at Jessie, who seemed to be sharing his grief, and his strength to conceal it. "Murgoh has started his final journey. And now we must begin one of our own. We travel west. The prey has gathered there."

     Silently, Savak took the lead, followed closely by Gerthen, Kosek, with Jessie at the rear, her head and tail low. Savak didn't turn, but he heard as Jessie bounded up from the back to match his pace at his side.

     "He was a good Lupe," she said.

     "I know," Savak replied. "And he was a good father too, even if it was from a distance."

     Jessie's ears perked up in surprise, but she remained silent. Savak was grateful for this. He could be alone with his thoughts and memories for a little while as they traveled. Murgoh said that his journey had only just begun. He couldn't help but wonder how true those words were.

The End

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Other Episodes

» Savak: The Medallion - Part One
» Savak: The Medallion - Part Two
» Savak: The Medallion - Part Three
» Savak: The Medallion - Part Four
» Savak: The Medallion - Part Five
» Savak: The Medallion - Part Six
» Savak: The Medallion - Part Seven

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