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Neopia's Fill in the Blank News Source | 15th day of Sleeping, Yr 23
The Neopian Times Week 57 > Short Stories > Boldheart: Stormy Winds and Were-Lupes

Boldheart: Stormy Winds and Were-Lupes

by meratocat

Teala snorted as her father walked by. She hated who she was, she hated where she was, and most of all, she hated her father. She was not just one of those selfish teens who had overreacted to having had to clean her room, Teala actually had a reason to be angry.

     As a young Kyrii, Teala was spectacular with the bow. She could beat any boy, and most any adults when it came to hitting her target. At first her father acted pleased with her skills, congratulating her on every shot, good or bad, but now things were different. Her youngest brother had joined the Calvary unit, and during a mission in the deep southern dessert, the bands of Lancoth had captured him. Or so the last surviving member of his group had said before he keeled over from a dozen deep wounds.

     Of course his courageous sister, Teala had immediately packed up her bow and arrows, and was walking out the door ready to save him when her father had grabbed her, and dragged her back into the house, saying that it was too dangerous a mission for a girl to take on.

     That had been a year ago, and though full of anger, Teala had listened to her father on the matter. Now, though, he had finally more then pulled the last straw… he had cut it in half!

     She had gotten into a fight with a boy, for after beating him in archery, he had demanded that she had cheated, and then insulted her mother, hence almost getting killed by the boiling Kyrii maiden. Her father, after hearing only the boy's side of things, had taken her bow, saying that she was too unladylike, and said that from then on she could no longer fight, or use any weapon. Especially the bow.

     "MOTHER WOULD HAVE WANTED ME TO HAVE FOLLOWED MY HEART!!!"

     "IT DOESN'T MATTER WHAT YOUR MOTHER WOULD HAVE WANTED!!! FOR SHE IS GONE!!!" and then he snapped her bow in two, and threw the pieces at her before locking the door to her room. "AND YOU WON'T COME OUT UNTIL YOU PROMISE TO NEVER ACT LIKE A MALE AGAIN!!!"

     Tears wielded up in her eyes, for her mother and for herself. "It is just unfair. Why couldn't I have been born a boy, then he wouldn't have cared. Instead I am stuck as I am… where I am forever." Tears ran freely down her cheeks, and she looked down once more at the broken fragments of her bow. At least she had had an extra quiver, and plenty of arrows stuffed under her bed, for her father had thrown her quiver into the fire. Then she remembered that she was no longer aloud to carry a weapon.

     Anger flared in her eyes, so what about what her father said. She was the only one who could decide her future, and then she decided what it would be. She put on a tan tunic, and some boots, and then after gathering up her quiver and arrows she walked up to her window. It was unlocked because she was on the second story of her home, but that didn't matter to the determined Kyrii as she looked over the edge of her roof.

     There was a sudden pounding on her door, and her father's voice picked up. "I am coming in there to see if you have any other weapons hidden around your room Teala." Then he started to unlock the door. It was now or never for Teala, so with one last look behind her, she jumped off the roof, and into a bush just as her father opened the door. He ran to the door just in time to see his only daughter running off into the woods that surrounded their home. "TEALA!!! COME BACK THIS INSTANT!!!" but even if she had heard him, she paid him no heed as she ran away from her home, never to return.

     As it begun to get darker, Teala made a fire, and began to make a new bow. She had just finished etching the last design into the handle when a sudden flash of lightning, and a roar of thunder came. She quickly began to pack up, for a storm would mean rain, and she did not want to be caught out in it.

     Teala searched around as the thunder got louder, until she found a nice cave to duck inside of. She had just gotten inside when it started to rain, so at least she was dry. The cave was pitch black, and Teala did not want to find out how far back the cave went, and if anyone else resided in there. She just wanted to get to sleep as she laid her head upon her hands, curled up to try and keep warm from the howling wind. Sleep she did, but not without dreams.

     She dreamt of her brother, and of the happy days that they had had together. In her dream she saw them together as kids swinging upon a tire swing, and all was happy, and then the nice vision disappeared, and was replaced by a vision of her brother's face filled with agony. Then a vision of an evil looking Tuskaninny, with many pets surrounding him took up her vision. The Tuskaninny and the other pets with the gold bands around their foreheads were all laughing at an Aisha, who at the moment was looking quite pitiful.

     Teala woke up panting, trying to discern what her dream meant, and the only thing that she could think about was her brother, and how she had never gone out to save him. Then it hit her, she hadn't gone out to save him because of her father, but now that he was not in the picture anymore, she could go out to get him. At that, Teala decided that upon the morning that she would make her way over the large mountains, and out to the desert to save her brother.

     She looked outside of the cave to where it was still pouring down rain, and thundering, and she thought that she saw a light reddish glow, and upon taking another look, decided that it must have just been a trick of the night. She lay down upon her hands, but before she even had the chance to close her eyes, a long piercing howl cut through the night.

     Teala pulled out her bow, fit an arrow to it, and then looked outside. She saw a flash of ruffled fur, and another slight reddish glow, but before she could make sure that her aim was true, the figure disappeared. She held her bow ready as several more howls followed, each time closer to her. Whatever it was that was out there was closing in upon her.

     Suddenly, there was a brush against her back. Teala turned, holding her bow out ready to fire, and she found herself facing a Reptillior, the vilest, and most poisonous creature that she could have possible ran into. It's red eyes blazed at her, and its fangs stuck out of its scaly head. Teala knew that a bite from this pet would mean death in minutes without proper treatment, for which she had none. Any sudden movement, and the Reptillior would strike her, it followed her every movement with his fiery red eyes, and Teala closed her eyes as tight as she could when she heard another howl from behind her. She had her bow, which was loaded pointing right at the Reptillior's head, and Teala thought about letting loose her arrow, but she knew that if she did, the snake would get a bite in before it died.

     Teala felt trapped, a Reptillior in her face, and some form of creature hunting her from behind. There was a sudden growl, and a drip of saliva fell onto Teala's back. She turned, and let loose one of her arrows, which pierced the creature right in the chest, and it fell on top of her. It sort of looked like a Lupe, with shaggy brown hair, only it had very large fangs, and was much too big. Then with sudden horror, Teala realised that these were the dreaded Were-Lupes, and a single bite from one of them would make you turn into one every full moon, hunting with the pack to catch victims in the night. The Were-Lupe on top of her let out a weak growl, before slumping down, its bright red eyes dimming with its destruction. Teala's aim had been true.

     She let out a sigh of relief, and then after pushing the lifeless Were-Lupe off of her she turned, and jumped back, having bailey avoided steeping on the Reptillior's back. She had forgotten about it in her fight with the Were-Lupe Suddenly, a thought came to her, why hadn't the snake bit her. It was certainly real with those glowing eyes. The Reptillior slithered up to her leg, and Teala grew taunt as it rubbed against her. "Calm down preciousss," the Reptillior hissed, and Teala sat down, and looked the Reptillior in the face. She now noticed that the fiery red glow in his eyes wasn't vile, or evil like most other Reptilliors. This one's eyes were… different.

     "You talk…" she said, for she had never before known that a Reptillior could talk.

     "I can do many unexpected thingsss preciousss," he said, but then he turned his head to the side, and a great big hiss issued out, and he showed off his fangs, before turning back towards Teala, "You mussst hurry preciousss. They are coming back, only many, many more. Run preciousss, hide. If they get you they will destroy you, or worssse." Then with another long hiss, the Reptillior slithered off into the darkness of the cavern.

     Teala wondered at what he meant, when she heard yet another howl. There were more Were-Lupes coming. She reached for another arrow to lode to her bow, but her hand never made it back to the bow, for it was grabbed from behind. Teala slowly turned, and there in front of her, a giant Were-Lupe stood holding her arm, its eyes blazing. Her feet turned to jello at the sight of the massive creature. It was at least twice as big as the one that she had nabbed with the arrow.

     There was a sudden scream/howl from the entrance of the cave, and then a second Were-Lupe bounded upon Teala's back, and tried to rip out her throat. The only thing that saved Teala from being bitten was the big Were-Lupe who threw the attacking one away. The attacking one however got back up with a growl, "Why don't you let me destroy her. She destroyed my mate! Thrasu, why!" and Teala realised that the attacking Were-Lupe was a female.

     The larger Were-Lupe, Thrasu, growled at the female, "You should not yell at authority, Umraka!" and the female Umraka bent down, her tail between her legs. "However, you will get the joy of seeing this creature perish, for she did destroy one of our members."

     "Do I get the joys of ripping her to pieces?" Umraka said in her low-gruff voice.

     "No! You know as well as I that if a creature is destroyed by the teeth of a Were-Lupe that they will be reborn forever stuck as a Were-Lupe, and if you rip her up, she will only come back tomorrow night, and by our law, we would have to let her join our pack. You do not want that do you Umraka," said Thrasu, and Umraka growled, and paced back and forth, her actions showing that she agreed. "Don't worry, we will still destroy her, the long slow way." And then Thrasu started to laugh, and Umraka, and many other Were-Lupes who had walked into the cave soon joined him while Teala cringed in fear.

     As the Were-Lupes dragged off Teala, the Reptillior, hissed. "They got preciousss. Bad isss thossse Lupesss. Krusssksss go help preciousss." And then he slithered off after the Were-Lupes

***

A heavy sweat rolled down Teala's forehead, and it was not from fear, but from the tremendous heat. With her hands tied behind her back, and her feet tied together, she was levitated above a pit of lava, deep inside of the Were-Lupes cave. Little did Teala know when she chose her cave that it was the front entrance to the Were-Lupes cave, and that she had crept in only minutes after they had left for their nights hunt.

     Literally thousands of Were-Lupes stood gathered around the pits edges all howling, and hopping up and down, while staring at the Kyrii with their blood red eyes. Thrasu walked up to a large boulder that put him up higher in the air then all the other Were-Lupes, and then let out a great howl getting the attention of all the other Were-Lupes "I, Thrasu, leader of the clan of Warpes, gives to us a sacrifice to the great Were-Lupe Thristl!" Thrasu spread out his paws as wide as they would go, and all the other Were-Lupes howled in union.

     "To Thristl! The dark king himself!" Thristl, you see, was like the Were-Lupes god. Legend told of a time long ago when the world was overrun by Were-Lupes, and Thristl was the leader of them all, enslaving all other pets to abide to their will.

     "Thristl!" began Thrastu. "Take this sacrifice and grant us power, so that one day, Warpes can rule over all once again!" All the Were-Lupes howled to that. "Now let the lowering begin!" Slowly, Teala was being lowered towards the pit of lava, all the Were-Lupes dancing around her.

     Suddenly, the whole room went dark, even the lava pit gave out on its illumination. Many Warpes begun to howl, and dance around in confusion as a strange substance filled the room blocking the Were-Lupes senses. Teala suddenly found herself face flat on her face, but also upon stone, and no longer dangling over a pool of lava. "I told you I could do unexpected thingsss preciousss."

     That name! Teala turned to look the Reptillior in the eye. "Hisssrolkusss!" he said, and the bindings upon Teala's hands and feet disappeared into thin air.

     "How'd you?"

     "No time for talk. Ssspell wear off in a minute!" He hissed at Teala, "pick me upsss, I'll direct you to the exit!"

     Teala listened to the strange Reptillior, and picked him up. "Which way!?!"

     "Forward!" he hissed, and Teala begun to run. "Left. Right. Three leftsss. Seven rightsss. Five more leftsss. Two rightsss. Left again." The Reptillior led Teala around like that, and soon, they heard the angry howls of the Were-Lupes from behind them. The spell had worn off.

     "It there any other faster way?" Teala cried while taking another left.

     "Only one other way preciousss. A short-cut, but very dangerousss."

     "Then let's go there," the Reptillior hissed angrily, but led Teala there anyway. By the sound of the Were-Lupes, Teala could tell that they were much closer. It was then that she saw her first glance at one of them. It was Umraka, and her eyes were blazing with anger. Teala ran and jumped over a small pit, and then she turned to look at the Were-Lupe, and found that Umraka had stopped at the pit. "Why did she stop?" she asked the Reptillior

     "Becaussse of Grenaksss."

     "Grenak?"

     "A very bad creature. They have very good hearing, ssso we mussst be quiet." Teala nodded, and followed the whispered directions of the Reptillior At one point, Teala misheard the whisper of the snake, and upon taking a wrong turn found herself dangling off of the edge of a cliff.

     She screamed loudly as she had fallen, and after she picked herself up, the Reptillior hissed with anger, "You mussst be quiet preciousss or elssse you will awaken the…" but a sudden long rumble stopped the Reptilliors whispered hiss, and his eyes opened in fright. Then he yelled, "Run preciousss, the Grenak has awakened!"

     Teala began to run with the Reptillior wrapped around her wrist. A loud roar sounded behind them, and the Reptillior squeezed tighter with fear. A shadow flew over them, and then in front of them landed the most horrid creature that Teala had ever, and would ever see.

     It was sort of like a pterodactyl, only its flesh hung off in rotting pieces, and it smelt of death. Its eyes were black holes in its head, and its wings could stretch from wall to wall. It had three massive horns sticking out from its head, and rows of sharp black teeth. Through all of that, though, the thing that frightened Teala the most was the dark purple flame, which engulfed its whole body.

     Teala's feet skidded as she turned and ran off in a different direction of the Grenak, and she was barely even able to jump into a small passageway as the Grenak's beak snapped after her. The creature could not get inside of the passage, Teala got that much comfort, but as she explored the passage, she found that it lead to a dead end. Outside of the passage Grenak just waited for Teala and the Reptillior to come out. "What do we do now?" Teala asked the Reptillior who's face looked equally glum.

     "Jussst run… and hope for the bessst."

     With a cry of hope, Teala ran from the passage, right past Grenak's legs, and towards a distant speck of light. She ran for all she was worth, but even so, Grenak was catching up with her. However, luck was with Teala that day, for there was a rumble from deep inside the passageways. The whole area was an active volcano, and therefore very prone to earthquakes, and every so many hundred years, an eruption. This earthquake however, was an enormous one, and it soon begun to crack the ground.

     As the ground split, Teala could see deep down into the fissures at lakes of molten lava. She avoided these cracks, and jumped over them when she couldn't go around them, and Grenak was equally confused, but still wanted to get his prey. With a roar, which shook the earth even more, he ran at Teala, but before he got to her, the ground under his feet exploded.

     The force of the explosion sent Teala flying back into a wall of the cave, and she looked as Grenak, with wings torn to pieces from the explosion, fall into the deep rivets of the earth, and disappear from sight forever. Almost immediately the mountain quieted down. Seemingly pleased with devouring the great menace Grenak.

     Teala picked herself up, and the looked at where the light shone through, she was almost to safety. "We're almost there! We're almost out of the mountain!" she said to the Reptillior, but then she realised that he was no longer on her wrist. "Reptillior?" Teala looked around for the snake, and then she found him, and a stream of tears came to her face. During the explosion, the Reptillior had been thrown from her wrist, and he too was thrown into the wall. He would have been okay, but then a large boulder fell down on top of him, crushing him.

     Teala rolled the boulder off of her new-found friend, and cried while looking at his glazed over eyes. He was not breathing. Tears streamed down her face as she walked slowly out of the cavern, and into the light while holding the crushed body of the Reptillior The sunlight made her tears glisten like tiny jewels, and reflected off of the Reptilliors body like glass.

     Teala set him down in the short grass outside of the mountain. She had crossed through the mountain, and was on the outskirts of the dessert, so that bit of grass was some of the last bits that she would see once she started on her quest to find her brother. "Thank you friend," she slowly said. "I wish that I could have known you better, for you seem quite valiant. Sacrificing yourself for my sake. Thank you," she whispered, and then slowly turned, and begun her walk towards the desert, another tear leaving her face.

     "You aren't… leaving me… that easssily… preciousss." With a gasp, Teala turned around, and saw as the once dead Reptillior's eyes once ablaze with their magnificent crimson colour. There was a popping sound, and his flat crushed body inflated itself, and the bones all went back together. "I hate it when that happensss," he said stretching out his tail.

     "Wha… how?" Teala asked looking at her friend now slithering towards her.

     "I probably should have told you preciousss. I can't be killed by any force natural or not. It isss a curssse that was put upon me many long yearsss ago."

     Teala cried out with happiness, and took up the snake in her arms. "It is great to have you back Reptillior."

     "My name isss krusssk preciousss, and even though I can't be killed, doesn't mean that it doesssn't hurt when you sssqueeze me."

     "Sorry Krusk, and by the way, my name is Teala, not precious."

     "Whatever you sssay preciousss." And Teala laughed, not caring what Krusk called her, for it was a miracle that he lived. She just wished that that happy moment could last forever, for very soon she and Krusk would have to travel on a perilous journey across the desert looking for her lost brother.

The End

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