Lord Faerigan - Fyora's Role in the Meridell Wars: Part Four
Chapter 4 - Madness
Dear Queen Fyora,
I am deeply troubled about Lord Darigan. It seems that he is under the influence of the orb or some other dark magic. In a brief moment of sanity, he said there were voices in his head. Other times, he’s overcome by rage, threatening to take out King Skarl and the entire Meridell Army. Everyone has tried to talk sense back into him but it doesn’t seem to be working. I don’t want to inconvenience you, but you are an expert in these matters. I humbly ask for your assistance and extend my gratitude for your consideration.
Fyora read over the letter several times as she proceeded into the Darigan Castle. Galgarroth rushed to the entrance to greet her.
"Your majesty, I appreciate that you came all this way," he said, huffing and puffing throughout. He looked flustered and desperate.
"You are most certainly welcome. Now, you seem rather distressed. What’s going on? Is Lord Darigan alright?"
"No, he’s in a rampage. I am not sure if you'll be safe seeing him."
"Am I not the most powerful faerie? My friend is in danger and I will not stop at anything to try and rescue him." Fyora thought. She shook her head.
"I’m sure I can handle it."
"You don’t understand; he might harm you." Galgarroth appeared exasperated.
"I'm capable of defending myself. They really have a misconception of faeries outside of Faerieland don't they?" thought the Faerie Queen." The Queen sighed.
"I appreciate your concern, but as I said, I can handle it."
The Faerie Queen shifted her staff to her right hand and gently placed her left on the Grarrl’s shoulder, giving him a determined look.
"You know who I am, and assure you I will be fine..."
Galgarroth slowly nodded. He led her to the doorway of Darigan’s chambers and opened it.
"Lord Darigan sir, you have a visitor."
"Who is it?!" shouted Lord Darigan. Fyora winced. She had not expected Darigan to sound so angry.
"She’s an old friend of yours..."
"I don’t have time for old fr-"
The Korbat froze as he saw the Faerie Queen. He stared at her without saying a word. Queen Fyora suddenly felt a sharp pain in her head that almost brought her to her knees.
"There’s a strong wave of dark magic in this room. I can sense it, and it pains me greatly," Fyora said as Galgarroth quickly grabbed a seat for her.
"Fyora, are you sure you are alright?" he asked. Fyora raised her staff and muttered something in the faerie tongue. The staff emitted a soft pink glow and then faded...along with her headache.
"Yes, I activated a spell that will keep the dark magic at bay for now. I should be fine."
Galgarroth seemed hesitant to leave the two alone.
"You’re anxious for me still aren’t you? You can stay," Fyora said gently.
"What are you doing here?" Lord Darigan said rather loudly.
"I’m here to check on your well-being, Lord Darigan."
"I’m perfectly fine!"
"Lord Darigan! That’s the Faerie Queen you’re shouting at," Galgarroth scolded.
The Korbat turned and stared at his adviser, fuming with anger.
"Get out! How dare you question my authority!" he shouted.
Lord Darigan’s words made Galgarroth feel numb from all the shock. For nearly all his life, he had been Lord Darigan’s closest friend and trusted adviser. Never once had Lord Darigan ever shouted at him. Deep down, he understood that Lord Darigan was no longer in control of his thoughts, but that did little to lessen the pain dealt by Darigan’s sharp tongue.
"Galgarroth...I’m sorry about all this..." said a calm and soothing voice.
He looked to find Fyora standing next to him. She leaned over to whisper in his ear.
"Don’t you worry about me; I’ll handle Lord Darigan. Please remain outside the door though. I wish to speak to you afterwards."
Galgarroth turned and slowly walked out the door, still in shock. Meanwhile, Lord Darigan turned his attention to the Faerie Queen.
"What did you say to him?!" he shouted.
Fyora covered her ears with her hands. "Lord Darigan, you needn’t be so loud. I can hear you clearly with your normal voice. I told him to leave like you asked. I am here because I do not think you are well. I wanted to reassure you that I am here if you ever need anything from me. I also- "
"Shhhh!" interrupted Lord Darigan. "Don’t you hear them?"
"Hmmm? Hear what?"
"The voices! They’re in my head! Get them out!"
The Korbat shook his head vigorously as he went down onto his knees. Fyora immediately rushed over to his side. Kneeling down next to him, she reached over and tried to give him a pat on the back in an effort to calm him but quickly knocked Fyora’s hand away.
Something’s wrong. This isn’t the Lord Darigan I know. He is in great mental distress... What voices was he referring to? Could it be the same three that were speaking to him before the war with Meridell? What do they want with him? Fyora thought.
"No. I am not done talking to you Lord Darigan. I don’t want to leave you in this state. Tell me about the voices."
"The voices! There are three of them! ‘Destroy Meridell!’ they say. ARGH! I shouldn’t have told you! Leave me! They’ll get you too!"
"Who will get me? No matter, let them come at me then. I do not fear them."
"Them, the Three...one of them is a faerie!"
Fyora felt a cool wind blowing and turned to look for a nonexistent open window. She turned back around and gasped. There in front of her, appeared a Gelert, a Skeith, and a faerie. All of them were ghostly figures.
"Who are you all? What have you done to my friend?" Fyora demanded.
The Gelert turned to the faerie. "Ambition? Isn’t she that queen of yours?"
"Revenge...you should know better; I answer to no queen!" she shot back.
The Skeith hovered over. "Your majesty, we are merely giving your friend some advice on how to fix his kingdom. Surely we are treating him well, I assure you-"
"Oh Greed, this is boring, let’s do our thing to her too!" Ambition interrupted.
Fyora opened her mouth to speak but suddenly she stopped and looked at Darigan.
You could save his kingdom. You are powerful and well-respected. Everyone will be on your side if you exert control over his kingdom. The Neopians love you. Look at them flocking to you for your advice and wisdom. You will be able to create a powerful nation. And after all these years of friendship, you deserve his kingdom. You—
"Do yourselves a favor and spare me from this futile exercise, will you?" Fyora said. She raised her voice, which was unlike the normally soft-spoken faerie.
"Ohhh! She’s more hot-tempered than you, Ambition," Greed teased.
"You three, leave my friend be. You have no business tormenting his mind like this."
"Hahaha! You honestly think you can tell us what to do don’t you? We do not have allegiance to anyone." cackled Ambition. The rest of the Three joined in on the laughter. Fyora became incensed and raised her staff. A bright pink beam shot out of it and right through the Three. The beam continued until it slammed into a glass window, shattering it to pieces.
Outside the chambers, Galgarroth heard the glass shattering and grew extremely worried.
"Fyora! What’s going on!?" he shouted, hoping that she would be able to hear him through the thick wooden door.
The Three became consumed with cold and cruel laughter before they disappeared into vapor.
"Arrrrghhh! Meridell is mine! I will destroy King Skarl! You will not get in my way!" shouted Lord Darigan. Without much warning, he lunged toward the Faerie Queen. Fyora raised her staff in an attempt to shield herself from Lord Darigan’s advances. At that moment, Galgarroth came barreling through the door, colliding with Lord Darigan in order to bring him down.
"Lord Darigan! What are you doing?!"
Fyora tugged at Galgarroth’s arm and motioned for him to quickly move out the door with her. The two darted out the door and shut it behind them. They could still hear Lord Darigan shouting but he did not bang against the door.
"What are we going to do? He’s gone insane!" Galgarroth panicked.
For a while, Queen Fyora did not speak. She sighed a few times before finally laying out her plan.
"You will have to stop him by force. It really hurt me to say that because he is my friend."
"How? His army is extremely loyal to him. In fact, he is my friend too. I am not ready for this!"
"I understand this is difficult. But-"
"You want me to turn his army against him How dare you suggest-!" Galgarroth gasped.
Fyora buried her face in her hands.
"Yes! This is hard on me too you know!" she said, trying to hide her tears.
Galgarroth sat down on the stone steps leading down to the entrance hall.
"My apologies, I didn’t mean to upset you Fyora..." he muttered.
"No offense taken. If there was an alternative, I would have thought about it by now. I wish it did not have to be this way."
"Can’t you alter his state of mind with magic?"
"That is a violation of Faerieland law and completely unethical. Not to mention, mind control means he wouldn't be himself, but what I want him to be. I cannot do that against my friend. I want him to think for himself, not to be under my influence. You saw him, look. Someone else is controlling his thoughts. Look how he is right now. It is unjustifiable for me to try to do the same...just to stop him from doing something." No. I am not that type of faerie."
"Ooookay. I didn't mean to get you all riled up...sheesh."
Fyora shook her head.
"My apologies. I did not mean to lecture you. I am just frustrated that I cannot seem to come up with any alternatives."
"What do you think we should do?"
"Well, once the Darigan army sees the state of Lord Darigan, some may be more willing to defect. We will have to get in contact with Jeran and get his approval to bring in the defecting troops."
"The troops are loyal in protecting the citadel."
"Exactly, and the only way to protect it is to keep Lord Darigan from attempting to destroy Meridell. Surely both lands will collapse from the destruction and there would be no kingdom to defend if a large scale war between the kingdoms breaks out. Defending the kingdom, not necessarily defending its leader. That's what we have to do."
"But what should become of this kingdom without Lord Darigan’s leadership?"
Fyora paused for a moment to smooth out the wrinkles in her dress. She then reached up and straightened her crown. Then she proceeded to answer Galgarroth's question.
"I have enough faith that Lord Darigan will survive. It is not our goal take him down. Instead, we want to restore his sanity so that he can continue ruling."
"How? You saw him back there."
"I'm still working on that."
"So you don't have a plan either."
"That's not what I said. I am looking into the origins of the orb and the Three."
Galgarroth still appeared doubtful. He stared at the ground, avoiding eye contact with the Faerie Queen.
"Galgarroth, I know this is a lot to swallow. This is by no means easy. I still think this has a better chance of working than letting things play out as they are."
"You are going to have to give me a more affirmative answer than that."
"Fine, count me in..."
"Alright. I will go and speak to Jeran. You will work in getting a resistance army ready. Sound fair?"
"Fair enough I suppose. I guess I don't have a choice in this matter."
"You are most welcome to propose an alternative if you think of something. After all, my plan is far from perfect."
"No, I don't have any other ideas."
"Shall we shake on this?"
The Faerie Queen reached her hand out. Galgarroth reached out and shook it.
Lord Darigan’s state of mind continued to deteriorate as he sunk further into the influence of The Three. Soon he found himself unable to lead his army. No longer coherent was his speech. Galgarroth attempted to assume this role but General Kass easily staged a coup to overthrow him. During this time, many broke from the ranks as they could no longer defend a kingdom ruled by tyranny. Meanwhile, Galgarroth disappeared from the citadel, many fearing that he was thrown off of the citadel and fell to his death. Fortunately for him, the faeries were keen enough to alert Queen Fyora and they were able to catch and rescue Galgarroth. They ensured his security by allowing him to seek refuge in Faerieland. However General Kass began to exert his control over the remaining loyalists in his army. He resolved to destroy any defector of the Darigan army.
Lord Darigan also went missing at this time. Many believed that perhaps his own madness brought him to his untimely demise. However, Queen Fyora had some hope that Lord Darigan did survive. Maybe, just maybe, he was somewhere in the vast lands below.
To be continued…