One Less Companion
Lendolin waved a paw at Starry, and he was thrown against a remaining wall
and shackled once again. He waved another paw, and the Will Stealer appeared
in his hand.
"So, you came for your companion, eh? Valiant effort, but it will come to
nothing. This time you will fall. You will not receive the privilege of serving
in my armies. You will become my house slaves!" He smiled at Shalecasha, glad
to see that his poison was working so well. Starry also stared at her, taking
full measure of what Lendolin had done to his friend. "Feeling well, I hope?"
He laughed deeply at his own joke, while Shalecasha tottered on her buckling
legs. Scith began to creep around towards Lendolin's back, poisoned Attack Fork
in hand. "It seems that my concoction is working wonders on you. It looks like
you're dead on your feet. I'm surprised that you are still alive. The poison
should have destroyed you long ago. But at the moment, you look ready to pass
in the shadow world at any moment."
He's right on that point, Starry thought. She looks as though she'll
drop any minute.
Shalecasha glared at Lendolin and tried to shout at him, but it came out as
a hoarse whisper. "Even if I am gone," she murmured, eyelids twitching. "I'll
have the joy of watching you be destroyed as well."
"I doubt it. Look at you, it is evident that you're going to join the shadows
in the next few minutes. I, on the other hand, am going to live a long life."
She did look like a very weak pet. Instead of her coat of black, it was a light
gray. Her wings drooped. Her eyes were bloodshot with blue. The very colour
of her eyes had changed. They were no longer light blue, they were dirty yellow.
She wobbled on legs that would barely support her weight, and would weave and
sway like a leaf in the wind. The flesh around the dagger wound had swollen
up around the dagger. Scith had gotten around to Lendolin's unprotected back,
and raised his poisoned Attack Fork. He threw it at Lendolin with all his might.
Lendolin spun and caught the fork just inches from hitting him. Scith stomped
his foot in frustration. "Ouch! Now why did you have to go and do that?!"
Lendolin ignored him. He rubbed the black poison in between his fingers, and
tossed the fork into the hole in the opposite wall. Suddenly, Shalecasha rushed
Lendolin, and Scith, seeing his chance, ran over to Starry and began to melt
Lendolin pulled out a Mono-Scimitar, and blocked the oncoming blow. Shalecasha,
weak as she was, struck blow after blow with Fire Sword with a fury Lendolin
had only seen once before. Lendolin blocked most of the strikes, but a few came
home. Lendolin dropped the Will Stealer, and in the fall, it was chipped. Two
wills floated out, a Lupe's, and a Lenny's. Scith helped Starry to his feet,
now free of chains, and they ran toward the hole in the wall.
"I've got a headache the size of Happy Valley," Scith said, rubbing his head.
"What took you guys so long?" Starry questioned.
"Sorry, it took till dawn to get Shalec to wake up. We were going to come
at night, but then she passed out while making poison for my Attack Fork. She
could think of nothing except getting you out of here. Strange how her mind
works, isn't it?"
They reached the outside, where the sun wasn't quite so brown anymore, and
flew to a cave.
"All right, I'm going to go help Shalec destroy that freak of nature, and you
stay out here until we come back out." Scith grabbed his fork and ran back inside.
Shalecasha sliced downward, and cut Lendolin's Mono-Scimitar in half. Weaponless,
Lendolin shot a look at Scith, and his pupils began swirl. Scith relaxed, the
colours of his eyes swirling in time with Lendolin's eyes.
Shalecasha looked at Scith, and tried to shout: "Don't look at his eyes! You'll
become one of them!" It only came out as a grating whisper. It was too late.
Eyes spinning around, Scith charged Shalecasha, fork raised high. He was too
close for her to dodge, and Scith ran her through with the Attack Fork. She
gasped with the pain from the Attack Fork sticking out of her stomach. Scith's
eyes stopped swirling, he was back to himself. He looked on the scene with horror
"Thanks a lot, Scith..." Shalecasha rasped, giving him the evil eye.
She ripped the weapon from her belly, and tossed the fork back to Scith. She
was closer to the end than ever before. Her eyes were half-lidded, and her breathing
came in shallow gasps. Her coat was no longer gray. It was white. She collapsed,
unable to support herself anymore. Lendolin began to sneak away from the scene.
He was in a state of denial. Nobody had ever come this close to defeating him.
Never. Vast armies had attacked him when he was completely alone, and he had
defeated them all easily. Now here come three puny Shoyrus and they almost destroy
his entire empire. He crept from the room, not knowing that from every side,
he was being watched.
Scith watched Shalecasha collapse, weapon still in hand. At the same time
he heard padded feet and the sound of a cloak dragging the ground. He was torn.
Should he stay here and get his companion out? Or should he go and pursue Lendolin?
The very name of the fiend made him grit his teeth. He ran off toward the sound
of the dragging cloak.
The Golden Dubloon
Shalecasha lay there. One... last thing to do. But can I do this task?
She thought back to the day they had gotten those accursed invitations.
How gullible we were. I hope that Starry is all right. She looked up
at a hole in the ceiling. The sun was almost yellow. I am slipping away.
Better do it before I pass off. She crawled toward the chipped Will Stealer.
With a large effort, she drew herself up to a kneeling position. She raised
her Fire Sword, and slammed it into the Will Stealer. A small explosion threw
Shalecasha back to her original spot as a thousand wisps of will rushed out
of the halved orb.
Starry was pacing around in the cave. He stood on the lip of the cavern, and
looked up. The sun was yellow now, giving out a cheerful glow. He looked down
and saw the masses of Neopets below. A cracking sound above him caught his attention.
Out of the hole in the fortress's wall, a fog of white vapour began to float
toward the pets below.
"They'll have free will again! Then we can finally go home." He looked back
up to the castle. "I wonder how they're doing." He slurped down a healing potion
that had been made the night before, and took wing toward the fort.
Lendolin turned a corner and saw the front door. "Thank evilness!" He looked
back, and he saw Scith flying after him, teeth bared and Starry's Ice Scimitar
in hand. Lendolin yelped and ran toward the wooden doors. He put one paw on
the handle. Scith landed a few feet in front of him, and brought the icy sword
in front of himself. Lendolin turned to Scith with a triumphant smile, his paw
still on the handle. "You are too late, Shoyru. Once I open this door, my armies
will flood into this hall and tear you apart!"
Scith simply smiled and leaned against a wall. "Go ahead. Open the door. We'll
see who gets torn apart."
Lendolin cackled and opened the door. Xtreme stood on the doorway. Standing
next to the white Lupe was a bruised and scowling Fortilius Behind him were
the hundreds of thousands of pets that had been enslaved. Scith snuck up behind
the gaping tyrant and sent the Scimitar through the Kougra's back. And there
marked the end of Lendolin, tyrant, ruler of all who live under the brown sun,
who was killed by the very people he enslaved. He fell into the steps in between
Xtreme and Fortilius, and they pushed him into the masses, finishing him off
and leaving his dead body for the buzzards.
The sun warmed Shalecasha's white face, and she smiled. The sun is completely
yellow now. So much for the ruler under the brown sun. Her eyes dimmed,
and their lids dropped like trap doors. I wish I didn't have to go. I haven't
said... goodbye to anyone yet. What's going to happen to my family? What's going
to happen to shattaga, and Miataun, and Snow_angel? They'll be fine. I guess
Scith will have to find a new person to slaughter on a regular basis. He
eyelids twitched open slightly. Starry will have to find another friend
to complete the trio. Too bad, I was beginning to like him. Why do I have to
leave now? I had so many plans but, as shattaga would say, 'The end comes to
all of us. It hangs around, waiting for the worst possible moment, and then
it comes like a ton of bricks.' You just have to... move on...
A red light began to wrap itself around Scith, Xtreme, and Fortilius. A gigantic
light wrapped itself around the mass of pets, sending them into a panic.
"Not again!" Scith shouted, disappearing with a pop.
Further away, Starry had just discovered Shalecasha, light shining on her
paper-white face, her Fire Sword still clutched in her hand, and a small smile
on her white face. Starry slowly strode toward the body, not daring to believe.
A red light appeared and wrapped itself around Starry and Shalecasha. They popped
out of existence, and popped back right where they had disappeared. Scith pooped
in next to the shocked Starry and the still Shalecasha. Nobody else was there
except them; all the other pets had popped back to where they had disappeared.
Starry knelt by her, took his Ice Scimitar, and put it above her mouth.
"Starry, what are you doing? She's gone, you know that."
He ignored Scith, and kept the sword over her lips. No breath fogged the ice
on the blade. He took the blade away, and held the limp head in his hands, and
felt under her horn, where you'd feel for a Shoyru's pulse. No pulse at all.
They began to walk away, wondering how they were going to tell their owners
about all this. "How are we going to break this to Shalec's family? They're
going to be heartbroken."
"Break what to my family?" a cocky, annoyed voice behind them spat.
Not daring to hope, they both turned to see none other then Shalecasha, picking
up her Fire Sword, her coat returning to its normal jet-black.
"SHALECASHA!!!" Starry rushed at her and gave her such a hug that she couldn't
Eyes bulging, she choked out, "Please... let go of me. I can't breath!" Embarrassed
at his own behaviour, he pulled away. Scith slapped his own forehead and shook
his head in an expression of 'Why me?'
"Sorry," Starry muttered. "But how did you... you know..."
"The teleporting gave my heart a jump-start. It just took a while for a noticeable
pulse to start up." She gave him an affectionate look. "You want to know what
the afterlife looks like?"
She turned to Scith. "Now, my friends, how about a celebration? It's not every
day that we get thrown onto an island, save a thousand NeoPets, and come back
They began back down the concrete hallway, and Shalecasha looked thoughtful.
"But where are we going to celebrate? Can't be too expensive, I'm flat out
of Neopoints," Scith whined.
"Yeah, me too," Starry admitted.
"We're going to The Golden Dubloon! And don't worry." She pulled out three
100-Dubloon coins. The two males gaped at the gold pieces. "I'm paying!"