"Nooo!!!" yelled Ace as they all ran farther into the cave. "You guys don't
"We understand perfectly," said Midnight. "We know that there are dangers
"Oooh, fine!! I'll follow you guys, if this Shoyru will just let go of my
Shane let go, and they all continued to run. Inside the cave it was very,
very dark, but the Sword lit the way for them, as it always did. But it did
not light the deep darkness way ahead of them. It only lit the way as they got
there. The floor of the cave was surprisingly smooth, with sharp rocks sticking
up here and there. When they looked up, the NeoPets could see a rounded, and
very smooth space above them. The sound of dripping water drops could be heard
everywhere, and they could often feel the drops hitting their heads. Midnight
"Stop, everyone!" she said. "Don't forget what the Faerie Queen told us! There
are lots of dangers in here... if we run, we could run right into trouble!"
"But then... what about Blaze and Daze?" Shane said.
Midnight turned around and looked at the entrance of the cave. Everyone listened
closely, but they could hear nothing.
"To be honest with you," said Midnight at last, "I think they're afraid to
come in here."
"Two great fighters like them?" said Jen thoughtfully. "They shouldn't be
afraid of anything!"
"If those two are afraid to come in here," said Misty, "then that means that
there are more dangerous things in here than the Kougra twins."
"Exactly!!" Ace said with his arms spread opened wide. "THAT'S one of the
things I've been trying to tell you!!"
"I don't really care what's in here," said Midnight. Her voice became very
"If only you knew," said Ace almost to himself.
"Forget that! We came here to get something, and we're gonna get it! That's
Then there was silence. The only sound that could be heard was the gentle
hum of the glowing Sword.
"Okay, I'll tell you the real reason I don't want to go in here..." Ace said.
"Hiiissssss," came a sudden sound from deep in the darkness. The NeoPets all
jumped back. Jen and Shane both reached inside the bags the Lupes gave them
and grabbed their weapons. "Hiiiiiissssssss," it went again.
"W-what was that?" whispered Misty.
"I dunno," replied Midnight in a whisper. "Ssh, listen..."
"Whooo's theeere?" came a creepy, hissing voice from the shadows deep inside
the cave. "Leeeave thiiissss plaace, foooolss!" The voice sent a cold fear down
the NeoPet's spines. They did not answer. "Ssss. I knooow you aare theere,"
it said again. "Yoou's caannott foool mee. Ssshoow yourseeelves!!"
"Wh- who are you?" said Midnight, trying to sound brave.
"Ooh, I beelieeeve it iiss you's whoo shoould be teeelling mee whoo you's
aare. I aam noot thee one treespassing."
"I'm... Midnight. But who are you!?"
"Whyy must you's knoow?"
"I'm just curious..."
"Don't liiee. I wiill not tell you's whoo I aam..."
"Why won't you tell me?"
"Juust leeave me aloone!" it hissed again, and then they heard feet hitting
the ground deep inside the cave. It had run away.
"What in Neopia was that?" said Ace.
"I don't wanna find out," Shane said.
"Me neither!" Jen said.
"But, you all know that we may have to," Midnight said, trying to sound brave.
"Midnight," Misty started.
"What?" said Midnight.
"Erm, never mind."
"What? Tell me! Is it what you were going to say earlier, before Blaze and
"Just never mind, Midnight. It's not important!"
"Are you sure?"
Midnight looked at Misty very strangely. She then sighed.
"Fine then, you don't have to tell me," she said. "But you really haven't
been acting much like yourself ever since we first met Ace. Now, shall we move
"I guess so," said Jen.
"Are you coming with us, Ace?" asked Shane.
"Um, well..." he started slowly, looking at the ground, as if lost in thought.
"I suppose so. Sure, I'll join you guys on yer journey."
"Bah..." Midnight said quietly to herself.
"Then, let's go!" said Misty.
"But be quiet," Jen said. "Who knows what that thing was, or what it could
do to us. So very little talking!"
They set off again. They walked in a file line with Midnight in the lead,
then Jen, then Misty, Shane, and last, Ace. Everything became strangely silent
the further in they went. It seemed like the hum of the Sword even got duller,
and the echo of their footsteps seemed to become less and less.
Then, a low sound started from resonate inside the shadows again.
"Uuuuhhnn," it went slowly. The sound was very low, deep and scratchy. The
NeoPets jumped back.
"Who's there?" shouted Midnight.
"Who are you?" it answered slowly. "Why are there... no guards?"
"What do you mean?" asked Misty.
"When NeoPets are brought... back here... guards are supposed to be there...
so you don't get away..."
"Are you hurt?" asked Misty slowly.
"No more than I usually am..."
"Wait, are you trapped here?"
"Stay there, we're coming!"
"How do you know that thing's safe??" asked Midnight quickly. "You trust it!?"
"Do you trust me?"
"Bah! He's safe, don worry."
They all walked deeper into the cave, following the strange thing's voice.
They turned around a corner, and what they saw could not be believed. They saw
a cell, that was well lit with torches. In the cell, there sat two NeoPets.
A mutant Usual and Techo. Only, they were light grey, or light blue green.
"You are... free NeoPets?" asked the Techo.
"Yes," answered Misty.
"You do not belong here."
"You're a prisoner? I mean, you can easily escape! Just around that corner!
I mean, there's no wall, or anything... Why don't you leave?"
"Well, our Master says that we can't leave here until a season..."
Misty looked deeper inside the cell and saw some bars on the wall. Beyond
the cell bars, strangely, she could see a green tree, and some sort of red flower
"Midnight, it's always a season," she whispered.
"Let's just go," said Ace. "Look, I see stairs at the end of the cell. Let's
go up, and see what's up there."
Ignoring the mutant pets, they walked up the stairs. It was dark, but not
very, because there was a lit torch on the wall at the top. The stairs were
made of stone, and they went straight up. Finally, they poked their heads out
of a round opening at the top of the stairs. They were even more amazed to what
they saw than when they saw the cell and the NeoPets. A very, very large stone
place, that looked like the inside of a castle! The place was well lit. There
were torches everywhere on the walls. The entire place was filled with all kinds
of mutant pets! Kacheeks, Techos, Usuls, Chias... you name it, it was there.
They were all looking up at a stage. On the stage was a normal looking green
Quiggle. It wore a gold crown. There was a bright red in the middle of it. It
wore kingly garments that were also red, and it held a golden sceptre. The sceptre
was the same size as the Quiggle.
On top of the sceptre there was a golden ball that could be seen through, and
in the centre of the ball was a smaller red ball. The Quiggle was standing by
a stone pedestal.
"What is this!?" whispered Shane as he lightly shook. "I don't like this at
all! It sends a cold chill down my spine."
"Oh my gosh," Misty whispered to herself.
"What is it?" whispered Midnight. "You've been keeping something from us.
Now, what is it?"
"Look!" whispered Ace. "Up on the stage!"
A red mutant Kacheek walked up on stage with a glass orb. It then walked over
to the stone pedestal, and was just about to put it on, when there came a very,
very loud roar out of nowhere. It seemed very firm and commanding, somehow.
The roar caused the castle to lightly shake, and the mutant Kacheek dropped
the orb, and it hit the stone floor with a crash.
"NO!" yelled the Quiggle. "What was that!? What just happened? Who did this?
I demand to know!"
The mutant NeoPets hushed. Nothing answered. The Quiggle eyed the NeoPets
suspiciously, and he suddenly saw Midnight, Misty, Jen, Shane and Ace poking
their heads out of the floor. He gasped.
"It's them!!!" he exclaimed very loudly, so that his voice echoed very long
and loud in the cave. The other mutant NeoPets turned around to see the five
scared pets. "You!! I can hardly believe it! No, you will NOT get away!! Blaze!
The two Kougras jumped from behind him, and they immediately ran for the poor
To be continued...