Shad and Saura: The Story of Elversti - Part Five
The bushes by the path turned out to be extremely, well,
bushy. Not only the trees seemed old but the bushes were also thick, sometimes
thorny and not easy to wade through. The two decided to go on farther from the
path, by the old tree trunks, as bushes didn't grow there and it was easier to
jump from root to root.
"We're past the place where we saw them," Shad
stated. "And they haven't showed up."
"I can sense them a little," Saura said with
a frown, "and perhaps they're even aware of us. But they're not coming, so apparently
your theory was right."
The Lupe grinned in satisfaction, tensing his
muscles for another seven-foot leap. "We don't know where this path is taking
us, though, so we might wanna be careful."
The path went on for a while, seemingly endless
as the nature didn't change either. It was dark, yes, but not too pitch-black.
"You'd think that a forest with Faeries in it
would be a bit lighter," Shad grumbled.
"Maybe they're Dark Faeries," Saura guessed.
His brother stopped in the middle of a leap, falling face-first into a small
Blackberry bush. He got out so fast that the bush never understood what hit
"Dark Faeries? Dude, I never thought of that.
Dark Faeries are a pain even outside this place but here, where every single
Faerie is feared, including even 'em prissy little Air ones..."
Saura frowned. "Well, we can't go back now. Besides,
one is coming towards us. I can hear her footsteps. Try not to look disrespectful
"Who, me?" the Lupe hissed as a Faerie stepped
forth onto the path. She had rather short brown hair and her clothes were a
combination of yellows, reds and browns so the two brothers could only think
of her as a Fire Faerie of some kind, yet she didn't look much like the other
Fire Faeries they had seen before. This one looked... fiercer. And prouder,
somehow managing to resemble Queen Fyora.
"Are you coming to see us?" she asked, stopping
behind the bush that separated her from the two.
"Yeah," Saura nodded, adding quickly: "If that's
okay with you, of course. We just want to talk... and warn you all."
The Faerie's chin raised a little as her face
expressed disbelief, curiosity, suspicion and eventually seemed to come to a
conclusion. "That's interesting. Follow me then... just be warned, we have no
reason to trust you Neopets."
"Makes no difference, we couldn't be able to
do anything to you," Saura grumbled, jumping to the path. They didn't go on
for long when other Faeries started appearing between the trees as well. Most
of them seemed curious. There were all types, side by side, all looking more
determined, prouder and grimmer than the Faeries the brothers had known so far.
Yet they all had something in common - it was hard to tell what it was but the
Dark Faeries were not as evil as you'd expect them to be, the Air Faeries didn't
seem as absent-minded and the Fire Faeries were everything but playful. It was
as if they had come closer to the very definition of Faerie, each from their
own corner. They were all alike.
"Look!" Shad hissed, trying to keep his head
down and look around at the same time. "There are even Water Faeries! How can
they live in a forest? They don't even have feet!"
Saura peered at the general direction of the
Faeries, trying to look like he was glancing at the trees. "Yeah, but... they
A Water Faerie turned her head to look at them,
sitting on a tree branch and leaning against the trunk. Her straggly hair was
quietly waving in the wind, moving through the blue glittery haze behind her
back. These weren't exactly wings, but apparently they were magic strong enough
to lift her.
The Fire Faerie who was guiding them stopped
in the middle of the path and looked around. More and more Faeries kept appearing.
They were now everywhere, on tree branches and by the trunks, behind the bushes
and also on the path.
"Well, talk," she said.
"The Fortress is planning a war against you,"
Saura replied. "They should be ready soon. They're just completing their tactics."
"They're planning to use the power of the Seven,"
Several glances were exchanged. "And you're warning
us because...?" a Dark Faerie asked. She had straight black hair and her wings
had a rather odd shape, something like a mixture between the usual Dark Faerie
wing shape and the shape of other Faeries' wings. But she was still obviously
a Dark Faerie, already by the sharp gaze in her eyes.
It took a while before the two brothers finished
the whole story, as weird as it sounded to them at times, but the Faeries had
listened carefully and nodded in agreement every once in a while. When they
finished, the Water Faerie from before slid down from the branch - or floated,
"Even we don't know how the power of Seven works;
it's literally ancient," she said. "But it seems to me that we need to figure
it out if we want to survive."
Shad and Saura gave a relieved sigh. At least
the Faeries had listened to them. Even if the Fortress would turn against them,
they now had allies, or something very close to the term.
"Why are you enemies anyway?" the shadow Lupe
asked. "You keep driving them off the Elversti, and they keep thinking that
you're some terrible monsters who eat their children, and I bet that if you
could just sit down and talk things out, both sides would be happy."
"Hrmh," snorted another Fire Faerie with long
bright red hair and clothes. "We've never done them anything, except kept them
off Elversti. Can't say the same about them."
"Indeed!" Now several voices arose.
"Okay, so they come to hunt and pick the berries,
can't really blame them for that."
"Yes, we eat too, don't we? And the forest is
big enough for both of us."
"Tell that to them, m'dear! You've seen what
they do down south!"
"Have I! And I'm telling you, that they won't
succeed as long as I breathe."
"As we all, you know that."
"And all that stomping around in the woods like
a herd of Elephantes... seriously!"
"Indeed, no respect whatsoever!"
Shad's ears twitched. "Would you all shut up
and explain the whole point one at a time?!" The Faeries stopped out of pure
surprise and turned to glance at him. "What are they doing down south?"
An Air Faerie glared at him with her eyes gleaming
- pretty unusual for that type. "Measuring and dividing the land, that's what.
Annihilating us is one thing and that can be sorted out, but they don't plan
to move away into the plains, whatever they told you. What would they do in
the plains? There's no food there. The forest feeds them as it feeds us, so
they want to have it and don't think they'll agree to share it with us."
"Ouch," Shad muttered.
"Why not?" Saura asked.
"They're terrified of us," the black-haired Dark
Faerie said. "Don't think we can negotiate that easily. Our magic is strange
and unknown for them, and what they don't know is what they're afraid of. They
won't let us near and they won't listen. We can't get into the Fortress to talk.
We'd have to have a word with their council in order to achieve anything at
all but unless we take some hostages and demand for them to come out, this would
be hard to pull."
"Not to mention ironic," the straggly-haired
Water Faerie remarked. "Hello, we have a hostage and we won't let him go unless
your council comes out to talk to us about our peaceful plans for the future."
The two brothers glanced at each other again.
These Faeries were really a lot different from the ones they had known so far.
They were fierce, lively, even dangerous... true, all Faeries were dangerous
but these ones were obviously dangerous.
"And you can't step into the Fortress?" the Zafara
The Fire Faerie on the path grunted. "We could
tear this place down stone by stone if there wasn't for the power of the Seven.
It's like an impenetrable wall. If there was a way to break that protection,
we could go in with ease and talk to them... but we don't know of such a way."
"Maybe if we go back, talk to the council and
convince them to come out..." Saura muttered. The Faeries shot such a sarcastic
glare at him that even Shad blinked.
"Tired of life?" the Dark Faerie asked.
The Zafara blinked too. "Good point... okay,
The Water Faerie floated closer, carried by the
magical haze on her back. "Truth be told, the only way for us to survive is
to break the spell. Once they discover how to use the power of Seven outside
the Fortress, they'll come and track us down. And there'll be nothing we can
do about it. We'll either be destroyed or driven out of the land."
"Which wouldn't be the worst thing, as we could
live elsewhere," the Air Faerie added. "But they're going to take a lot of the
forest down, this much I can tell. And... Elversti."
The others nodded. Elversti was to be protected.
That path wasn't for strangers. And nobody wants to leave their home to violent
"There only is one thing to do," the black-haired
Faerie said. Obviously she was if not the leader then a very high-ranked spokesperson.
"To fight and to defeat, and then to talk. They won't listen until they're defeated."
"To fight, we must get past the Seven," the Fire
Faerie in red stated.
"The only way to get past the Seven or even find
out what it's about is to get inside," the Water Faerie said. "We can't get
inside, even if they opened the gates."
"We can't," the Dark Faerie agreed. Shad's
ears drooped. The whole sisterhood - it was hard to use any other name - turned
to look at the two brothers.
To be continued...