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Rasputin's Revenge:Part Two


by trishabeakens

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     "Citizens of Altador, please remain calm!" Nera waved her hands around, trying to get the attention of her loyal subjects. They were chattering among themselves, terrified and worrying over the sudden darkness that lingered over their past home.

     The crowd of Neopians became even more hysterical, yelling at each other and shouting that they needed to leave and start all over, yet again. She understood why they were upset, but shouting and wanting to run away never solved problems. It only delayed them, not solved them. Running away from things shouldn't be how you live your life. Nera tried teaching her people that. Maybe they would realize it this time.

     "How can we stay calm?! You know who is back!" A white Kougra shouted from the crowd.

     "Yeah! Some of us have already went through this! We can't go through it again your highness!" Another Neopian in the crowd shouted. Nera couldn't make out who said it, so she just ignored them.

     More and more Neopians started shouting their stories, saying they wanted to leave the kingdom. They felt like they were in danger here.

     Nera remembered that a lot of the Neopians in the crowd were the same ones who sailed from Moonstone island with her. They were Moonstone natives, just like she was. They all grew up together, dealt with the loss of their island, and found a new home. Nera knew they were also terrified of the all too familiar cloud. The natives themselves had witnessed the power and cruelty of Rasputin. All of them had been through enough in the past, and Altador was their new home. They felt safe and happy here, and the thought of having that taken away from them yet again made them angry. Starting over the first time had been hard enough on the islanders, they shouldn't have to do it again.

     "We don't know if it's actually..him. I'm sure it's nothing major and for precaution, please retreat back to your homes," the queen reassured her beloved people "King Altador and I will look into the matter."

     The crowd hesitated, still wanting to leave but instead, they obeyed. The crowd departed, each individual going back to their homes for sanctuary. Nera looked back behind her at the growing cloud. Part of her knew what she said wasn't true. She was certain that the dark cloud was in fact, the villain Rasputin. It looked like the one he made many many years ago. It prevented the islanders from escaping and from people landing on the island to help.

     The same fate may happen to Altador if Rasputin isn't stopped. Altador may once again, disappear from Neopia forever.

     Nera had to warn Altador about the situation.

     "Altador!" Nera ran down the hallways, looking for the white Lupe. He always knew what to do, and this time Nera really needed him. He solved many problems, some of her own even. Whenever she needed to vent or had an issue, she went to her beloved Altador. Nera started to give up on trying to find him in the massive building.

     "In here!" Altador suddenly called out to her.

     Nera followed the trail of his deep voice and walked into the library. The fairly large room was home to several large bookcases. The shelves held thousands of books on the lore of Altador. The mighty king stood in front of the many bookcases, flipping through a leather book with gold trim. All of his attention seemed to be focused on the book. Nera assumed it was research for a council meeting or something. The man liked to read, he always said 'Nera reading is like food for the brain. It's necessary to keep your mind sharp and healthy. So, be sure to read often my dear.'

     The queen ran up to him and hugged him from behind. She buried her face in his red cape and sobbed. Her heart felt shattered from seeing the fear in the eyes of the Altadorians. When they were scared, so was she. Neopians always talked about how brave and noble Nera appeared to be, but in reality she was like anyone else. Things terrified her and she wasn't perfect.

     Nera sniffed, still hugging the ancient Lupe king. Her being upset was startling to the king. The usually bright and cheery Xweetok had suddenly been acting different.

     Altador, now worried, closed the book he had read and slid it back in its place on the shelf. The Lupe turned around and hugged Nera tightly.

     "Is there something wrong?" Altador patted her back, trying to comfort her as much as he possibly could..

     "Yes something is wrong!" Nera looked up with tears streaming down her face. "He's back."

     "Who's back?" Altador slightly tilted his head in confusion.

     "Rasputin."

     "Wait...wait no, Nera that's impossible!" Altador cupped her cheeks in his hands and looked into her eyes. "Nera..Nera listen you told me yourself he would never come back. He's banished inside of his amulet with magic. You're the one who defeated him, remember? You told me the entire story and I'm sure you're wrong. He is never coming back."

     "Come here." Nera pulled his hands down, took his right hand in hers and led him over to a large window. "Just look out to the horizon, you'll see what I'm talking about."

     Nera pointed to where Moonstone Island was located. The eerie cloud had grown drastically in size, and it seemed to be floating towards their kingdom.

     "Nera what...what in Neopia is that?" Altador rested his hands on the windowsill, still looking out into the sea. The wind coming in from the coast slightly moved his long gray beard.

     "I told you.." Nera rubbed her arm, still upset over the current dilemma. "It's him. I don't know how or why, but he's back and I know he's furious about what I did to him."

     "But it's impossible! As I already said my dear, he's trapped in a magical amulet for an eternity! He is no threat to us or our kingdom."

     Nera sighed and started to pace back and forth across the room. "Al, I swear I did banish him. I just..I don't know what happened. The island isn't safe to visit, everyone knows that. He shouldn't have been let out by someone.. I just...I don't know."

     Nera stopped pacing and felt utterly defeated. Rasputin would be taking over the island once more. It now seemed as if he was headed towards Altador. All their work to build a city of freedom and joy would soon be destroyed. It felt as if the entire incident was all her fault.

     Altador walks over to his wife, putting his hand on her shoulder.

     "Listen, everything will be just fine" the king gave her a small smile "I'll take care of it, don't you worry."

     "Altador.." Nera started to speak, but he cut her off.

     "I'll get the other council members together. Jerdana is an experienced sorceress and she can handle whatever Rasputin throws at us. I'll have the army set up a defense position on the coast. Nera, listen to me... it'll be alright, we can handle this. I'll go to the Lost Desert and talk to King Jazan and we'll have more help."

     Nera shook her head. "What? No, no please don't leave me here alone. I can go with you! I can help. There has to be something I can do!"

     Altador gave his queen a soft smile. "It's necessary for you to stay here. I'm afraid you'll be more at risk if you go outside of the city walls. I promise from the bottom of my heart, I'll be back soon with help. You have always been just as strong and brave as I have. You're just as important to this kingdom of ours as I am, you can handle this. I believe in you, okay? Can you stay here for me and look over things?"

     Nera's shoulders slumped, but she nodded. Trusting him seemed to be the best decision. So, she would let him handle everything.

     King Altador gave her a hug before departing for the Lost Desert. Hopefully he would be able to find help. Jazan and Nabile always had been the dearest of friends to Nera, so she could count on them.

     Nera rested her forearms on the windowsill, looking out to the sea. The sky only grew darker and darker, and so did her worry. The wind blew her brown hair to the side, if her city wasn't currently being threatened, this would have been a nice moment for the Xweetok. The sea always put a smile on her face. Sitting by the window watching the waves roll into the coast always soothing her worried mind. But now, she only found herself thinking over what she could have done to prevent all of this.

     Nera wished she could have done more in the past. If only she kept up with the amulet, her people wouldn't be in danger again.

     Time would only tell if the kingdom of Altador would be safe.

To be continued…

 
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