Awakening - Part Four
Yubioke and Whelp (the Zafara's new name) ran into the castle
as fast as they could. Yubioke didn't have any assassins to slash down-- they
had all gathered somewhere else. Whelp carried the sword and giggled whenever
Yubioke picked up an extra burst of speed.
Yubioke didn't care half a copper coin if Whelp
was carrying a sword. After all, it was very rusty and unable to really hurt
anything. Yubioke slowed down, covered the baby's mouth, and peeked around the
corner, where voices were heard.
The Aisha, having the keenest hearing with four
ears, could eavesdrop easily on the talkers. One was a familiar voice...Mesbeto!
"Come now, apprentice, and watch how we slay
the royal family." Something about the mutant Draik's eyes nearly put Yubioke
into a trance. Mesbeto had obviously fallen victim to it; he was swaying back
and forth like a snake's prey.
"And kill MirrorEyes..." the Draik said melodically.
"And kill MirrorEyes..." Mesbeto echoed like
an idiot. Yubioke was disgusted for a moment at the thought of being his sister.
Whelp had waited long enough. His mouth was sore
from the new mama holding it so long, and even though he knew it was rude to
do this, he couldn't help it. He was suffocating, after all.
"EEEEEEECCCCKKKKKK!" he screamed, sending the
Draik into a jolt. Mesbeto woke from his trance and looked around wildly. The
Draik growled in frustration and knocked him out with the hilt of his sword,
while he ran around the corner to face the intruder.
Yubioke would've cursed at the baby, but now
wasn't the time. Infuriated, she grabbed Mordred and furiously attempted to
turn the chainsaw on, but to no avail. The Draik was advancing on her, slowly,
Expecting the blow to come, Yubioke held her
paws in front of her face for any protection at all. The Draik sneered and lunged
with his blade...and the blow didn't come. Instead, a sharp edge poked through
the Draik's stomach and he screamed in agony. Falling to the ground, Yubioke
saw her protector.
"Huh," she snorted, "so you really can fight,
after all." Jeran managed to hide a growl and wiped his blade on the floor.
Yubioke snorted; she had always taken an immediate disliking to knights. Especially
Jeran, because he was probably always preening himself in front of a mirror...at
least, that's what the haters told her.
"By the looks of it," Jeran growled, "you weren't
exactly in a position to be sassing, were you?" This time Yubioke suppressed
a growl and Jeran grinned with satisfaction.
"If Mordred would've cooperated-" she argued,
but he cut her off.
"Whatever," he snapped, "Now, why are you here?
I'm not very partial to kids like you."
Yubioke waved it off, because she definitely
didn't care what some sniffy knight thought of her. "I'm here for my brothers
and sister, Hiterkuna."
At the word, "Hiterkuna," Jeran froze and looked
questioningly at her.
"Why would you be Princess Hiterkuna's sister?"
he asked accusingly. Yubioke was surprised. "She's gotten herself to princess
standards?!" she practically screamed.
Jeran, having gotten used to this strange Aisha,
nodded. "She didn't exactly want to be a princess. His Majesty Skarl ordered
it, since his own daughter is out questing." Yubioke picked up Whelp and turned
to leave. "Where are you going?" Jeran asked almost casually.
The green Aisha turned around and fixed him with
an icy glare, "I told you, smart one. I'm going to find my brothers and sister."
Jeran rose an eyebrow.
Yubioke, growling, attempted to ignore him and
helped Mesbeto up. "C'mon," she muttered to her surfer-dude brother, "We've
got to find Kyradose and Hiterkuna." At this statement, the once groggy Mesbeto
shook his head furiously.
"No way, dudette," he told the Aisha, "I'm not
going back. Kyradose can fix his own problems if he thinks I'm a coward." Yubioke
cocked her head, "You didn't really believe that, did you?"
Mesbeto blushed slightly, "Well, you know, dudette,
he can be pretty convincing..."
"You're a complete idiot," she informed her brother,
"Even though Kyradose said that, you actually believed it?!" Mesbeto's face
was a beet red by now.
"Even though he says that," Yubioke explained,
"he'll never mean it. That Shoyru's too soft for his own good, and you know
"Dudette," Mesbeto argued, "I haven't been on
Neopia as long as you!" That sent Yubioke into a rage.
"You calling me old?!" she demanded, eye slits
flaring. The yellow Acara cringed back, but he knew she would never hurt him.
"No, I ain't, I'm just saying you're like, fifteen
and I'm only twelve."
Yubioke snorted. "Oh, that's terribly long, isn't
it?" she demanded sarcastically. "Three years is going to make a huge difference."
While the two argued, Jeran flicked them both in the foreheads.
"Let's get moving, kids," he said, "Or we'll
be here forever." The two nodded (Yubioke doing so hesitantly and placing Whelp
back on her shoulder) and followed Jeran towards the stairs.
I slashed past assassins as I flew up the stairs
as fast as possible. None of them put up much of a fight, and I wondered how
they had gotten to this group if they were this bad. Something was happening
to me...something like that incident in the dungeon.
Power began growing inside me at an unspeakable
rate. My wings pumped harder and I felt a ghostly aura surround me. I didn't
notice it, but my skin seemed to be taking on a greenish tint. My nose was growing
slightly longer, and my horn on my head split into ears.
The speed around me grew extremely high and I
was a greenish blur up the staircase. I was going too fast to concentrate on
slashing up the enemies; I simply knocked them down the stairs. Finally I reached
the top of the staircase.
I roared with spirit in my voice and slashed
at one of the assassins. The cloaked figure turned around just in time and blocked
my dagger with their own, but he (or she) was knocked backwards by the blow.
The figure tumbled to the ground and I advanced on him.
"You're going to pay dearly for what you're trying
to do," I growled through clenched teeth. I was about to bring my dagger down
on the assassin when I heard a very familiar voice issuing from the cloak.
"K-Kyradose?!" the panicked voice asked. I recognized
it instantly and gasped. "Hiterkuna?! Why are you..." I trailed off and stared
at the black cloak she was wearing. On it was the printed letter A. A for Assassin.
"Kyradose, this isn't what it looks like," Hiterkuna
said quickly, "I stole an assassin's cloak and weapons when I killed him and
came up here. Wait a minute...what's with your skin? Why are you a-"
"Never mind. Don't you understand," I began slowly,
as I looked wildly around for the criminals, "that we're stuck up here now?
There's no other way out!" Hiterkuna bit her lip and confessed, "I didn't think
I mentally cursed and muttered, "It's alright.
We just need to think how to get out of here..." Hiterkuna gestured toward the
open field only a few miles away. "We could fly."
"No," I replied, "We have to wait for Yubioke
and Mesbeto." Hiterkuna nodded and we heard the roar of another assassin. A
furious Kyrii raced up the stairs and stared straight at me. He gaped, than
regained his form and hurled a dagger at me.
The unexpected power took over me again. This
time, it forced me to move with more speed than ever imagined. I pulled Hiterkuna
aside with me and the dagger fell harmlessly off the tower. The Kyrii cursed
and threw another dagger at me, which I dodged again just as easily. The assassin,
now out of weapons, did something unexpected.
The red Kyrii raced toward me speedily and rammed
into me. My first thoughts were that he had ran me through, but I felt no sharp
object piercing my flesh. Instead, the Kyrii pressed a cold orblike object to
my skin and I lost the ability to move. Grinning, the Kyrii withdrew from me
and dangled an orb in front of my face. Inside it was some of the ghostly aura
that was surrounding me.
The assassin made a break for it and I found
the ability to move again. I growled and dashed after him. "Stay here!" I shouted
back to Hiterkuna, "Don't leave the castle!"
Hiterkuna watched for a while after I disappeared
down the staircase, than ran down after me. Instead of following the Kyrii toward
the great hall as I had done, she turned a corner and ran until her ears picked
up the sound of old, heavy breathing. The Zafara slowed to a halt and found
Gizial, hunched down near a corner.
The old Usul was bruised and wounded from the
invasion. Hiterkuna, eyes full of tears, gently pulled off her black cloak from
the assassin and draped it around the nanny.
"G-Gizial?" she finally found the courage to
There was silence for a while, than Gizial spoke
in an old, cracking voice. "Child..."
Hiterkuna wrapped her arms around the old Usul
and squeezed gently so as not to break her. Really, Gizial seemed frail enough.
After a while, Gizial's old, wrinkled paw found its way to her shoulder and
held it for a while.
"Hiterkuna...she's here...Victoria..." Hiterkuna
gasped in horror and new tears formed in her eyes. Victoria was searching for
"Hiterkuna, promise never to forget. Never forget
what you live for, and what your friends live for." Hiterkuna nodded and the
old Usul's breathing ceased.
Scrunching down, Hiterkuna wept openly. Gizial
made no move to stop the mourning, she just lay there. The Christmas Zafara
lay there for a while, when she heard the voice of the pet she hated more than
anything in Neopia.
"Well, isn't this a pretty picture?" Hiterkuna
looked up from the tearstained floor and saw Victoria, with a sword in hand.
She grabbed her dagger and the royal Zafara sneered, obviously not knowing the
importance of a good dagger.
"You've been a thorn in my side long enough,"
Victoria snickered and jabbed the sword at Hiterkuna. Even though she wasn't
exactly a fighter, she could see that Victoria had probably never touched a
sword in her life. The way she held it was all wrong; she dragged it around
like it was heavy.
The royal Zafara jabbed the sword a little faster,
getting the hang of the sword. Hiterkuna blocked the clumsy swing with her dagger
and parried the next. She backed up into a corner and Victoria inched closer.
"Victoria," Hiterkuna tried to reason, "don't
make me hurt you..."
Victoria laughed a high, cruel laugh that made
the Christmas Zafara shudder.
"You, hurt me? On the contrary, my young one.
This is the night where your blood is spilt." Then, swinging far more wildly
than expected, she disarmed Hiterkuna and stabbed right at her heart.
To be continued...