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Week 253
You are on Week 254
Week 255

Every week we will be starting a new Story Telling competition - with great prizes! The current prize is 2000 NP, plus a rare item!!! This is how it works...

We start a story and you have to write the next few paragraphs. We will select the best submissions every day and put it on the site, and then you have to write the next one, all the way until the story finishes. Got it? Well, submit your paragraphs below!

Story Two Hundred Fifty-Four Ends December 9

"Halt. One more step, and I just might let the tip of my sword slip."

Nazira froze behind a tree as she felt the touch of cold steel brush past her. Smiling slightly beneath her hood, the Aisha replied, "Do that, my dear sir, and I just might drop this dagger that I have aimed at your chest." With an angry yelp, her captor leapt back a step, sweeping her blade aside with a clang. Taking advantage of the brief distraction, Nazira spun around with her dagger and met the other Neopet's blade with a ringing clash. Nazira whistled in interest as her eyes fell upon a Lupe, who was clad in black like herself.

"You!" the Lupe snarled behind their crossed blades. "You're a Darigan scout by the looks of it! What business do you have skulking around Meridell?"

"I could ask the same of you," Nazira retorted. "Meridell scouts don't often venture this close to the territory beneath the Citadel."

"I've nothing to hide," the Lupe snapped proudly. "My name is Sujen, and my business is to find suspicious vagrants like you."

"Well, you're doing a terrific job of it," the Aisha replied, rolling her eyes as she returned her dagger to its sheath. "I'm simply keeping watch on my kingdom. Same as you, little pup."

"How dare you!" Sujen flushed angrily. "You Darigan minions simply cannot trample around here as you please, just because--"

"Hush!" the Aisha interrupted.

"You can't talk to me like that!" the Lupe responded. "I shall speak my mind if it so pleases m--"

"HUSH!" Nazira repeated. "I heard voices over there."

They both fell silent as the sound of whispers drifted across the night.

"This armour is a commendable piece of work," a deep voice said. Squinting hard, the two agents were able to make out the vague tall shape of a Grarrl, partially hidden by some thick foliage. "It looks like it came straight from Darigan's armoury. With this piece of work," the deep voice continued, "I will lead a small attack against Meridell Castle in three days' time. King Skarl shall think that Darigan has broken the truce, and war will ignite between the two kingdoms once again..."

Author: spies from a tree
Date: 2nd December
..."The truce was doomed to fail ever since its signature; its signing at the hands of a redeemed ninny, and a fat, pretentious fool. You of Meridell know how loathsome and lazy your foolish monarch is; you of Darigan can easily realize how weak-hearted Darigan turned out to be. And you know I speak the truth. You have taken heed in the truth. That is why you have come to me."

There were various noises -- the sniffling snickers of Darigan minions, the angry cries of peasants, the growls of inhuman beasts. Nazira glanced at Sujen, genuinely taken aback. The Lupe, in reply, drew his blade, but Nazira hastily placed a paw upon it.

"Sheath it, you fool!" she hissed, her voice lower than a breath. "We cannot be seen, heard, or suspected. That shiny metal scrap will be as obvious as a black Babaa in this moonlight. By drawing it, you prepare for battle, a noisy endeavor, to be sure. And if one of this madman's servants realizes the proximity to the Meridell scouts perimeter, they may already be searching the area for unwanted guests."

Sujen sighed, sheathing his blade. Nazira turned away, shadowed eyes cast upon the direction of the voice.

"Once the chaos has begun, we will further the panic and hysteria, amongst our own ranks. Those of Meridell, you will steal away with livestock, burn your neighbors' crops, kidnap their children -- whatever you must do to bring up the level of panic amongst the commonfolk. Those of Darigan... you know what to do."

The ghastly laughter ensued. Taking this as her cue, Nazira leapt forward, her body silent as it cut through the wind, and tumbled into the brush without more than a mere twitch of a branch. Sujen was awed by her acrobatics, and replicated them as best he could without taking his feet off the ground. The two agents then did they best they could to climb silently through the shrubs towards the origin of the voice.

"Do you see that light?" Nazira whispered after a moment. Sujen merely nodded.

It was true: there was an icy blue glow emanating softly from a gathering of trees. It was like the glow of an unnatural fire, for what fire burned and glowed blue? Curious, the two approached it stealthily, making sure that they could not be seen or hardly heard.

Slowly, figures came into few. Only a few at first, but as they approached the ring of trees and the congregation amongst them, they could see more and more faces -- wide, glossy-eyed faces, completely enthralled by the future's prospects. Finally, they were close enough for adequate spying.

Nazira and Sujen were completely and totally silent as they approached the foremost tree surrounding the clearing the congregation was situated in. They could make out the Grarrl clearly now; a hulking black beast of a pet, donned in a shadow-black cape. A ruby-encrusted sheath hung on its belt, the stones reflecting a bloody light. The fire before him glowed an ethereal blue.

There were many amongst the crowd. Peasants, squires, scholars, and nobles of Meridell stood out, as well as a large gathering of scaly, spiny minions of Darigan.

"That's... That's Duke Preffcorn, King Skarl's cousin," Sujen whispered in disbelief. "That's Lady Slovina, the sorceress-in-training..."

Nazira did not make a peep. Sujen turned to her; she was frozen, wide eyes cast upon the Grarrl in the shadowy cape and bejewelled sword.

"Who is that?" Sujen asked softly, his voice as low as he could muster.

Nazira turned to him, opening her mouth to speak. Before she could, however, the voice of the Grarrl cut her off.

"When chaos has embroiled our two 'great' nations," -- the groups snickered as "great" was said -- "I, Lord Valkar of House Merdinia, will usurp the throne of Lord Darigan. No one will miss that weak-minded fool.

"As for Meridell... You already know who will take the throne of that worthless dump, King Skarl, don't you, those of Meridell?..."

Author: really_awesome_d00d
Date: 5th December
...Sujen leaned forward eagerly, his ears twitching. Who was behind the conspiracy on Meridell's side? Who would take the throne?

A loud snap echoed around the clearing as the branch Sujen had leaned on broke. With a growl of anger, Nazira grabbed him, preventing his fall. The voices died off immediately. "What was that noise?" Lord Valkar snarled.

Sujen and Nazira held their breath as the blue fire flickered. Valkar's dark eyes flashed as he surveyed the surrounding area. "Slovina," he said softly. "I think we are being watched."

The sorceress, a beautiful young Xweetok, nodded. She lifted a paw and twisted it in an odd motion. Sujen and Nazira watched, fascinated. The blue fire roared upwards and its tendrils whirled around the forest, seeking those who would eavesdrop. One of them found Sujen and Nazira. Thinking of nothing else to do, Sujen blew on it.

"It's not a candle, you nitwit!" Nazira hissed. She rolled her eyes and raised her own paw, imitating Slovina's gesture. The fire died back, its blue glow returning to the pit.

Valkar glanced over at Slovina.

"The fires found no intruders," she said haughtily. "'Tis a Symol or some other rodent."

"How did you do that?" Sujen whispered. Nazira shook her head.

Valkar was still eyeing the forest cautiously. "I would advise we continue this elsewhere," he said.

Slovina glared at him. "Perhaps the Lord Valkar insinuates that my powers are not up the simple task of detecting intruders?"

"Never," Valkar said silkily. "I merely would like to suggest that caution is our friend. At this point it would be foolish to take certain... risks." He smiled, showing his fangs. "Let us... move to a more comfortable place."

As the treacherous company began to move out of the forest, Slovina glared back at the trees. The blue fire waved up around her heels, like an eager Petpet. Muttering something in an unknown language, she turned her back to Sujen and Nazira's tree.

Nazira let out a relieved breath. Without warning, a tendril of blue flame wrapped around her throat. Sujen jumped backwards, startled. Out of nowhere, Slovina appeared next to him.

A malevolent smirk adorned the sorceress's face. "What do we have here?" she whispered...

Author: saphijaze
Date: 6th December
“...A young spy? So.” Slovina’s smirk broadened.

“My Lord Valkar,” she raised her voice, calling out to her fellow conspirators. “It seems that your niece has something she would like to say to you.”

Slovina laughed a rich, throaty laugh at Nazira’s startled gaze. Her tail flicked in amusement. “Surprised I know who you are young one? You shouldn’t be.” Out of the corner of her eye, Slovina saw the Aisha trying surreptitiously to raise one paw. Another tongue of blue fire licked out, wrapping itself around Nazira’s paws.

“Tsk, none of the that, Lady Nazira. We wouldn’t want you to do anything you might regret.” Almost lazily, she motioned with her paw again, and Sujen found himself wrapped up in the same blue fire, faster than he could move to avoid it.

“You can’t do this!” he sputtered, thrashing against his bonds. Nazira, he saw, stood silently, only the fierce glow in her eyes betraying her anger.

Slovina laughed again. “Oh, but I already have, my young Lupe. It seems the deed is already done. And King Skarl shall be very pleased with me when I report that I found two scouts conducting treachery in the woods.” Sujen and Nazira shared incredulous glances.

Slovina lifted one paw in front of Nazira’s face. She made another gesture, and Nazira gasped when she realized what it was. The claws on the Xweetok sorceress’s hand begin to grow longer, ending in wicked points. “And when I am through with you, you will gladly tell King Skarl all about your treachery...”

She pointed her claws at Nazira’s face, but a strong paw gripped hers, preventing her from reaching the Aisha.

“You overreach yourself, Slovina,” Lord Valkar snarled. “She is of my blood, whatever she was doing here. And you do not make the decisions here.” He paused and a twisted grin spread across his features. “Or would you challenge the future High Lord of Darigan?”

Slovina snarled, trying to free her paw. Valkar released her abruptly and turned to face his wayward niece. Behind him, Slovina rubbed her paw where Valkar had held her with his punishing grip.

“You shall come with me,” he address Nazira, and grabbed her paws to pull her to his side. “This one, though,” he said, looking at Sujen, “is expendable. Give him to the minions to play with. His... unfortunate end will only inflame the hostile sentiments more...”

Author: ariansilverrose
Date: 6th December
...Sujen looked to Nazira in desperation, but her expression was blank, her head held upright and proud. She seemed oblivious that her hands were still in Lord Valkar's grasp. Sujen knew he and the Darigan scout weren't exactly friends, but he'd hoped that she wouldn't forget him so easily.

He looked instead to the Sorceress, who returned his fearful glance with a smile. Though the Xweetok's features were smooth and perfect, her cruelly satisfied expression was not at all attractive.

The Lupe took a deep breath. He was a Meridell scout, of the land of bravery and honor. His king was linked by blood to Brightvale, the land of wisdom. Was he going to allow himself to be a mere "inflamer of hostile sentiments" so easily?

No. "Sorceress," he began in a bold and commanding voice--

"Shut up," she snapped, and swirled a paw. Blue flames wrapped themselves around his muzzle.

Well, the Lupe thought, that didn't work. Wits and cleverness of the tongue would not save him now.

But he still had his Meridell-born bravery.

He took a second deep breath, preparing himself for knightworthy action. Even though his mouth was bound and his paws tied, he would not be taken without a fight worthy of his land. Scanning his surroundings, he looked for a point of weakness. The sorceress appeared mildly amused, fiddling distractedly with a strand of blue flame that curled around her wrist like a bracelet. Lord Valkar, still clutching his niece's bound paws in one clawed grip, was shouting directions to his minions.

Nazira was staring right at him.

Her expression was still blank, but her eyes bore straight into his being, as if she understood every thought going on in his mind. Almost imperceptibly, she shook her head...

Author: laurelinden
Date: 7th December
...Now why on Neopia wouldn't she want him to escape? Sujen raised an eyebrow at her, trying not to draw attention to their communication.

Nazira was looking at the sky, paying absolutely no attention to him.

What was going on? Sujen looked up, but all he could see were the tips of trees, swaying in the breeze. Maybe he had imagined Nazira's expression. Maybe she hadn't been saying no at all. Or maybe she didn't have a reason, she could just be frightened out of her wits. He started searching around again.

Nazira was scuffing the ground with her foot. Craning his neck, Sujen could just make out the letters N-O. He tried again to catch Nazira's eye, but she seemed to have lost interest both in him and the scuffs which she had blotted with one foot.

This was ridiculous.

Losing patience, Sujen began wiggling his paws in the blue flame, trying to get them loose. Unfortunately, the fire was not like normal rope. It molded exactly to his wrists, and there was no way he was going to get out of it. He glanced at Nazira again.

"What's wrong with you you, idiot?" Nazira was glaring at him when she said it, but suddenly her view switched to Lord Valkar. "Lord Darigan won't let you get away with this."

Lord Valkar merely laughed, but Sujen glared at Nazira. That was one too many hints to ignore, and he still didn't know what would posess anyone to want to stay in this situation. King Skarl must be warned! He must do something! Deciding that Nazira didn't understand the gravity of the situation, Sujen tried to work with what he had, which was only his eyes and his feet. That could work. He could run at least. His mind made up, he took off running.

He had to admit that it had been a poorly thought out plan. He had barely taken one step when fire lashed around his feet, sending him toppling. The sorceress was standing over him, still looking amused.

"Did you really think it would be that easy?" She asked with a laugh, "You try my patience, little scout, and frankly I'm disappointed. I thought you'd think of something more original than that." She gave a fake sigh, "Oh well, we can't have you falling down and breaking something now can we? We have a long way to go before morning. I'd better make sure you can't hurt yourself."

Fire seemed to engulf his brain, and the last thing he saw before he blacked out was Nazira mouthing, "I told you so!" He could only hope that she had a plan...

Author: hideyho987
Date: 7th December
...There were sounds echoing around him, muffled by the veil of unconsciousness that was only slowly receding. Sujen tried not to moan as he slowly opened his eyes and blinked several times to clear his vision. The cloudy images slowly began to take shape and he realized he was lying on a patch of mossy ground next to Nazira and both of them were still bound by the magical bands of blue fire. Their captors were nearby, the Lupe could hear their voices, but they seemed too intent on their own conversation to pay Nazira and himself much attention. Still bound, he managed to arrange himself in a sitting position.

"I told you not to try and escape," Nazira whispered in an angry hiss, "but you refused to listen."

"I couldn't figure out why you wouldn't me to at least try," Sujen explained, softly, "Do you have a plan?"

"I did," she responded in the same hushed tone, "but now Slovina has cloaked this area in a magical barrier. It will be much more difficult to escape now even once I remove these bonds."

"You can remove the fiery bands?" Sujen gasped, his voice rising slightly.

Nazira quickly hushed him, but their conversation of their captors continued without pause. They were on the far side of the clearing, and it sounded as if their discussion was rising to an argument. For the moment, they had apparently forgotten about their prisoners.

"I can do enough magic to release us," Nazira finally explained, "but I will need the use of my hands in order to free us and that will take time. Somehow, we need to keep their attention away from us long enough to do this."

Sujen hesitated for only a moment for he realized, strangely enough, he DID trust her despite any differences they may have. "Okay," he said, "What do you need me to do."

"Just sit still for a moment," Nazira instructed. She closed her eyes and softly chanted strange words that sounded almost like a strange and beautiful song to Sujen. He felt the straps about him begin to loosen before falling off all together.

"You did it," he announced, rubbing his now free wrists, "Now what?"

"Now we need a distraction," Nazira said.

Sujen smiled, his eyes sparkling. "One distraction coming up," he promised...

Author: tj_wagner
Date: 8th December
...After a whispered conference, Sujen pushed himself gently to his feet, taking the utmost care to avoid either of his captors' attention. The Lupe crouched and slid, on paws and knees, into the foliage that made the Meridellian forest.

Nazira watched his retreating form until it was completely obscured by the ancient trees, and murmured something under her breath. Tongues of cerulean fire blossomed from her palms. The soft light lengthened and twisted around her wrists to form dancing circlets. It was with a critical eye that the Aisha examined them, and, convinced her charm would pass as the real thing, settled on a particularly comfortable patch of moss to wait.

She did not wait long.

Nazira winced as Slovina's wrathful curses were magnified exponentially by her four ears. Xweetok and Grarrl alike cast about the clearing for any sign of their former prisoner, though Valkar was much more efficient; Slovina did little more than gnash her pointed teeth.

"It seems your magic is not quite so potent as I was led to believe," Lord Valkar hissed, a not-so-subtle threat in his words.

This did little more than encourage Slovina's temper. "It is inconceivable that little brute could have possibly -- you!" she snarled, rounding on Nazira as an idea began to form. "You wouldn't have anything to do with this, would you?"

Nazira scowled at the ground, her shoulders hunched. "It is true what they say about citizens of Meridell -- they care only for their own well-being." There was a bitter satisfaction in her voice as she added, "But even though I was abandoned, at least I know you will fall with me."

Slovina's face twisted in rage -- she looked as though she would have enjoyed striking Nazira, and the Aisha braced herself. Lord Valkar, however, sent the sorceress a cautiounary look, and said, "Come, we must search the area. All will be lost if out secrets are discovered."

"What of your niece?" Slovina asked.

"She will remain here. After all, she is still bound," Valkar stated with finality. The Xweetok opened her mouth to protest, then thought better of it.

When Slovina was out of hearing range, he told his niece quietly, "You are a fool." Then, without another word, he and the Xweetok melted into the forest.

A heisitant grin lit Nazira's features, and with a wave of her paw the fire that held it faded into nothingness. Now her plans could begin in earnest...

Author: keikala
Date: 8th December
...Quickly, the Aisha scanned the horizon for Sujen. She would require his presence in order for her plan to begin. How to keep Valkar and Slovina preoccupied without the Lupe's aid was beyond her. And where were the Grarrl's thralls? The minions of Darigan and traitors of Meridell seemingly faded from the fray. That wasn't a good sign, not a good one at all. Nazira readied herself, collected her senses, and looked out upon the azure belt of night sky.

She could hear trampling in the woods; Valkar and Slovina seemed quite furious in their dash for their missing prisoner. Nazira couldn't help but admire Sujen's reckless courage. Recklessness had never been a tactic she could afford.

A piercing shriek split the night, and the serenity cast by the silver stars above seemed shattered. Almost instantaneously Sujen burst, dashing from the woods, a panicked look in his eyes...

"RUN!"

Nazira just shook her head and took off running in the direction of her Lupe comrade. The two had nearly made it to the forest by the time they heard Slovina or Valkar again.

"You truly are a waste of my time, Slovina," Valkar murmured. "With all that hot air in that puny Xweetok brain of yours, I thought that there was possibly an inch of potential. I suppose I was wrong."

"You are truly mistaken, milord," Slovina's voice echoed, in a warbly and unfamiliarly shaky tone. "I am much more than I may sometimes seem; sometimes my power gets ahead of me--"

"Silence!"

Valkar's voice echoed across the noiseless night. "Where in the blazes have they gone?!"

There was no reply from Slovina.

"You witless witch!" Valkar cursed. "Your magic is useless, and you're nothing but an overrated magician of quite possibly the lowest grade I have ever witnessed."

"Milord, I do not know how my spell failed; I had fine-tuned it to check and--"

"Begone!"

There was another shriek, this one even more shrill and unnerving than the last. Valkar's booming laughter echoed out soon afterwards. Sujen shot Nazira a concerned look, but the Aisha was avoiding his gaze.

"Who is the nearest person in a place of power in Meridell?! Hurry, tell me!"

Nazira belted this out, breaking the silence.

"W-Well, uh..."

"Tell me! It is imperative that I know!"

"The Green Knight," Sujen replied. "He's the captain of the scouts, at least for the time being. He should be in the western outpost -- hey, wait!"

Sujen dashed after Nazira, who was darting off into the velvet cloak of night.

* * * * *

"Let us in! Let us in!" Sujen declared, banging wildly on the wooden door of the outpost. There was a shuffling of feet and the door flew open. Sujen toppled to the floor. Nazira, meanwhile, stepped over his crumpled form and into the room beyond.

"Cadet Sujen? What is the meaning of this... visitor?"

The Green Knight stood before his desk, a concerned look on his face as he stared at Nazira. His finely polished emerald-green armor gleamed brilliantly in the light of the fire; Sujen was relieved to see that it was not blue. He'd had enough of blue fire.

"I'm sorry, Captain," Sujen murmured apologetically, staring nervously at Nazira as he arose to his feet. He brushed a speck of sawdust off the knee of his tunic. "But it is imperative that we warn King Skarl."

"Warn him of what?" the Green Knight asked quizzically.

"We must warn him of a dastardly plot that is being decided at this very moment," Nazira explained. With that brief introduction, Nazira went at great lengths to describe all the happenings of the night to the Green Knight, who stared on in wonder.

When she had finished, the Green Knight rubbed his chin thoughtfully.

"This is grave news," the Green Knight murmured. "You are sure this is correct?"

"Positive. If it weren't for Nazira's quick thinking, neither of us would have survived. Lady Slovina, the sorceress-in-training, one of Illusen's apprentices -- surely you know her, being a member of the Royal Court and all -- is, er, was in cahoots with Lord Valkar." Sujen's voice was shaky, but sincere.

The Green Knight sighed deeply.

"You two were the only scouts present at this meeting?"

"Yes," Nazira and Sujen said in unison.

The Green Knight smirked slightly. "We're quite lucky to have one as dedicated as you, Sujen. You both will be commended for your bravery. The treachery of both nations must be stopped at all costs."

Sujen bowed. Nazira did not.

Sujen shot her a fierce look. "Bow," he hissed, offended by her lack of respect. But Nazira looked as if etiquette was the last thing on her mind.

The Aisha's face was contorted in a fierce scowl. Sujen followed her gaze to the Green Knight, still smirking, who had a hand raised in the air. He snapped his fingers, and the resounding click of the door's lock sounded afterward.

"Captain?" Sujen was confused. Why was Nazira looking so... hostile? And why had his commander locked the door, especially in that fashion? "Why did you lock the door?"

"So no one can hear you scream," the Green Knight murmured, snapping his fingers once again. The light of the room dimmed, and fear leapt within Sujen as he watched the flames of the fireplace flare into a most unnatural shade of blue...

Author: really_awesome_d00d
Date: 9th December
..."So kind of you two to turn yourselves in," the Green Kight smirked. "Lord Valkar will be quite pleased with me, and I'm sure he'll know where to turn when he needs a magician to replace Slovina. The war will come again, and soon I will be King of Meridell!"

"You!" Sujen managed to gasp, "It was you! How could you?" He had resigned himself to the thought of traitors in Meridell, but this was the Green Knight! The man who had trained him and taught him to have pride in himself and his kingdom. He couldn't be a traitor...

But obviously he was. Sujen's eyes roamed the room, looking for an escape.

"Oh, very good little Sujen. 'A warrior must learn his surroundings before anything can be accomplished.' That was one of your earlier lessons, wasn't it? I'm happy to see that you haven't forgotten."

"Sujen, stop." Nazira's voice held an edge of command, and Sujen certainly did not think of disobeying her this time. "This is not so easy as bolting in the woods, nor so simple as undoing shackles." For the first time, Sujen noticed an aura of blue flames around Nazira's hands. "Get ready to run if the door opens."

If? That didn't give Sujen much confidence, and neither did the Green Knight's laugh.

"I don't think so, little Darigan. Unless I miss my guess, Lord Valkar would be very pleased to get you back. I have no intention of killing you over a worthless scout like him." Sujen's self confidence, which he had thought was low already, plummeted. He stood against the side wall of the chamber, between the two magicians.

"Maybe not." Nazira's voice was even. "But then, things don't always turn out the way we intend, do they? And besides, it's nearly impossible to predict the outcome of a magical duel, or didn't you learn that?" She stood motionless with her back against the wall, every muscle tensed.

"Oh so it's a duel you want?" The Green Knight was grinning. "I've always wanted to test myself against a Dari--" Nazira didn't wait for him to finish. She hurled the blue balls of flame at his chest in rapid succession. He blocked them with a thin blue shield and sent flame daggers at her.

"Have to do better than that, missy!"

"Indeed?" Nazira dodged the daggers and created snakelike coils to tangle the knight's legs. In seconds they vanished, to be replaced by a swarm of flaming bees which dropped out of existence after only a few curses from the Green Knight. Sujen watched the battle eagerly, almost forgetting that his life and the fate of Meridell depended on the outcome. The conjurations grew more and more fantastic, as if each magician was trying to impress rather than hit the other. Sujen gasped as a wall of fire advanced on Nazira and waited breathlessly for the counter.

It didn't come. Instead, Nazira threw a hand toward the door, which swung open. "Go!" she screamed, and Sujen was jolted back into the dire situation at hand.

He had been told that at very important or life threatening moments, time would seem to slow down, but that never happened. On one side of the magical wall he saw the Green Knight pouring magic into the wall, clamping his eyes shut and unaware of the opening he had given his enemies. On the other side he saw that wall only inches from Nazira. He also saw the open door. He saw all of this in an instant, and in that same instant he acted without thinking, without mulling over the wisdom of his choice or what the consequences might be. With a fantastic leap, he hurled himself at the Green Knight, knocking him against the chamber wall and causing his head to hit the stone with a very loud thud. The fiery wall vanished, and Sujen saw Nazira crouched on the ground, one arm outstreched to keep the now nonexistent wall at bay. They stared at each other for a few seconds, then as one they dashed out of the room and into the night air. They ran towards the main hall of Meridell Castle, not stopping until they reached King Skarl himself.

* * * * *

The Green Knight and Slovina were sentenced by King Skarl himself to life imprisonment, along with all the other traitors that Sujen managed to help nab.

Lord Valkar's evil plot was thwarted, of course, and King Skarl let Lord Darigan deal with him. No one ever quite heard what his punishment was.

Sujen was appointed Captain of the Scouts in the Green Knight's place, and he spent the rest of his days training the young pets of Meridell to honor their kingdom and King.

Nazira returned to Darigan Citadel, where she recieved a fitting reward. She was promoted to a Lieutenant in the Darigan army; one step above scout. Darigan was hard to impress.

As the years passed, the kingdom of Meridell prospered, and the peace with the Darigans remained intact. The royal scouts may have sometimes noticed that their Captain often met with a Darigan Aisha who was of a lower class than he, but no one dwelled on it, and Sujen and Nazira were good friends for the rest of their days.

The End

Author: hideyho987
Date: 9th December



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