Casting a Shadow: Part Two
The next day...
Asilvani woke up to find out she was the only one in the hotel room. “Jimbigy and Haunter must've gotten a head start...” she mumbled. Surely Jimbigy's headed to, or is already at Edna's Tower. I hope Haunter's keeping a close eye on her.
Getting out of bed, she got ready to go out and explore. I wonder how those two are doing. Maybe I'll stop by Edna's Tower...---
The Zafara witch was looking through books to figure out what spell to craft next when a Wraith Krawk entered the tower. She turned to look at the visitor. “Welcome, visitor. I don't suppose you're here to help me with my latest concoction, otherwise I certainly don't hope you're here to ask me something.” Edna said.
The Krawk lowered her head and cracked a sly grin. “If I help you, would it be too much to ask for something in return?”
“If you're looking for a nice reward, I'd suggest you go elsewhere. Most of the items around here go toward my spells; only a few pieces of Spooky Food here and there are left.”
“Oh no, a reward isn't what I'm looking for.”
“Then what is it, child?” Edna demanded.
“I hear you can help people with their magic.”
Edna rolled her eyes. “Bah, every other day someone's coming in here asking me to boost their magic.”
The Krawk's eyes glowed with excitement. “So you can help?”
The Zafara sighed in exasperation. “I suppose so. But you better prepare to work hard for my assistance!”
The Krawk nodded. “Whatever it takes.”
“First of all, show me what you can do.”
Suddenly losing the confident look she had before, the Krawk nervously held out her hand and a small flame appeared. “...This is really the only magic spell I can perform. Everything else I know I got from freeing bottled Faeries.”
Edna stared at her, with a sarcastic look on her face. “Well, no wonder you came for my help. But nevertheless, once I'm done with you, you'll have some respectable power. But... it will certainly take a while.”
“I'm willing to do anything.”
“Very well. We'll start from the ground up. Bring me these items and I'll teach you a beginner spell.” Edna handed the Krawk a slip of paper with two ingredient names listed.
The Krawk looked over the list.
Eye Shadow Keychain and... Dark Eyelash Facepaint?
The Krawk put up a false smile, but a twitching eye betrayed her positive demeanor. I'm... getting makeup for her. Is... is this a joke? This has to be a joke, or one heck of a coincidence. It's almost like...
She stopped herself before that thought could develop. Too many bad memories. She really didn't want to get these ingredients, especially considering the last time she worked for a Neopet that constantly demanded grooming items. But she really had no other choice...
“I can go get these for you.” she said, through gritted teeth.
Edna nodded, pleased. “Make sure to return within an hour, or this spell won't work!”
“Ok. I'll make this quick.” Mostly so I can get this over with... The Krawk dashed out of the hall.
At the entrance, she crashed into someone. Bewildered, the Krawk looked down to see who she ran into. Of course, it was a certain Stealthy Draik...
“Are you serious? Why are you here, Asilvani?!” the Krawk yelled.
“I was just checking up on you, Jimbigy! I didn't see you this morning.”
“You sure knew where to find me, though. Listen, I don't have time for this. I need to find some items for Edna.”
Before Asilvani could say another word, Jimbigy dashed off towards the Haunted Marketplace.
Sweeping the dust off herself, Asilvani got up. “That certainly could've gone better.” To her relief, she saw a Christmas Ghostkerchief floating after Jimbigy. Asilvani gave a small smile. “Good. Haunter's keeping on top of things. I don't think Jimbigy's seen him, either.”
“But in the meantime, I think I might have a little chat with Edna...” she mused, looking up at the Tower.
As the witch was reading over the steps needed to perform the spell, Asilvani wandered in. “Miss Edna, is it?” Asilvani called out.
“What is it now? Do you want some spell of power, too?” Edna groaned.
“No, I don't need any spells. But, what I do need is information.” Asilvani pulled out a notebook and a pen. “Tell me about that Wraith Krawk that just went by. What kind of spells were you planning on teaching her?”---
At the Marketplace, Jimbigy was scouring the open shops for the items she needed. Embarrassed having to look through store after store of grooming items – as a Wraith Krawk in the Haunted Woods, no less - while getting the confused stares of patrons in every store, she eventually found both of the items. She looked around. It didn't look like there was anyone in the aisle she was in. She couldn't resist – she had grown up as a thief, after all. She grabbed the keychain and facepaint off the shelf and snuck them under her robe.
“I hope you'll be paying for that, miss.”
Jimbigy stopped cold. She turned around and went as pale as a Wraith could get. It was the shopkeeper – a Halloween Shoyru, who was now impatiently crossing his arms.
“U-uh... I have no idea what you're talking about.”
“Miss, I was right behind you. I saw you take those goods and stick them underneath your cloak. I certainly hope you're not planning on stealing them, are you?”
Jimbigy looked around. Neopets were starting to gather around. She was starting to get nervous. If I run now, what would be the chances of him catching up to me? I know how fast a Shoyru can be when they take to the skies... But is he even battle capable? Even if he catches up to me, could I still knock him out? And this crowd of Neopets... could I break through? Several questioned buzzed in the Krawk's head as she planned to escape.
She looked around. She noticed a gap between a Lenny and a shelf that she could use to escape.
This is going to be a huge risk, but I suppose I'll take it... I can't waste any more time.
“Hello, miss?! Are you going to pay for these items?”
Jimbigy stared blankly at the Shoyru for a moment, then cast a spell to darken the surrounding area. Donning her cloak to subdue her Wraithly glow, she made a mad dash for the exit.
Neopets shouting and loud crashes could be heard.
“H-hey!” the Shoyru cried out, but it was no use. By the time the dark fog lifted, Jimbigy was already long gone. On top of that, she had caused some collateral damage: several shelves had been knocked over, with a few Neopets struggling to get free from out beneath them.
Nobody knew where the Krawk went. The thief had gotten out scot-free.
The Shoyru could only hold his head and groan in frustration.
Far outside the Marketplace, Jimbigy stopped to take a breath. “...It's just like old times, ain't it?” she sighed, to no one in particular. She kicked herself for freezing up at that moment. It was just a stupid Shoyru... but why couldn't I do anything at that moment?
In the back of her mind, she knew the reason why. But, she thought to herself, of all Neopets, why did the shopkeeper have to be a Halloween Shoyru?
She always dreaded seeing a Shoyru of any kind, but Halloween Shoyrus, in particular, strike a particular nerve for her...
She got back up, and took a peek at her watch. “There's still some time. I have to make it back to Edna's.” She put up the watch and left for the tower.---
Asilvani was sitting on the roof of the tower when she saw Jimbigy – with Haunter keeping his distance behind her - come up. Afraid of being seen, Asilani ducked behind the spiral.
“Edna! I have the items!” Jimbigy yelled.
“Aha, here they are. Good. You're just in time; the magic hasn't faded yet. Let's begin.”
Asilvani started to think. So she really is going to train Jimbigy. Asilvani looked over her notes she had obtained from interviewing Edna. It was a list of spells, most of which involved darkness or fire. If that's what she's teaching my sister, I'm going to need a few supplies. The upcoming days don't look bright. And if all else fails...
She pulled out a charm with a pretty blue gem embedded in it. They said only to use this if her power reaches a certain threshold... I don't know what this thing does, but I'd assume something magical. A reflector, or maybe even a magic neutralizer? It's not a Thyora's Tear, that's for sure – the color's too dark. I suppose time will only tell...
She spread her wings and took off: her destination was Neopia Central.
A half hour later, Jimbigy stepped out of the Tower. “Well, that was... exhausting. Edna said she wanted me back here tomorrow morning, though. I suppose that means I'm getting closer to my goals.” Reciting an incantation under her breath, instead of a tiny wisp of fire, a formidable fireball appeared in her hand instead. Jimbigy cracked a sinister smile.
“Yes. One step closer.”
To be continued…