Boldheart: On the Path to the Desert
Teala swung her new bow over her back, besides her quiver
of arrows. "I better not have to make another one of these," she said to
Krusk, the strange Reptillior who was wrapped around her wrist. She had owned
a total of three bows in the time span of about two days, the first one being
destroyed by her father, and the second falling from her back into a pool of
lava within the were-Lupes cavern.
"Well preciousss. Practice makesss perfect,"
Krusk said holding his S's.
"You aren't the one making them though. So,
can you tell me, what was it that happened to you back there? I mean… uh you…
"Died," Krusk said straightforwardly. He
was no ordinary Reptillior by any means. Teala had at first thought it strange
when he did not strike her when she had almost steeped upon his head, and then
when he spoke to her, for as far as she knew Reptilliors didn't talk. Soon after
she found out how strange he really was, when he saved her from the band of
were-Lupes using magic, and then most of all when he came back to life after
"Yes, and how is it that you saved me?" Teala
asked, rubbing her finger in her red fur.
"It isss a curssse. One that I received a millennia
ago. A curssse of life."
"What do you mean by a curse, and how did you
Krusk looked at Teala, his Reptillior eyes showing
a past of pain, and misery. He opened his mouth as if to say something, but
all that came out was a long drawn out hiss. He closed his mouth, and looked
crestfallen towards the ground. "I cannot sssay anything that hasss any relevance
to me. Why? Who? When? Where? I am a lossst sssoul, ssstuck in thisss form for
all of eternity! I am lossst in the dark, banissshed from the light by my own
kin for a crime too great to ssspeak of! I am forever sssilenced to ssspeak
of my passst… forever forgotten." He looked back at the ground. "That isss my
curssse. It forbidsss of me to speak of who I once was. Even these riddlesss
that I sssay give me a burning feeling deep inside. It isss all bessst to be
forgotten preciousss." And then no matter how much Teala asked, Krusk remained
silent, not even uttering a hiss.
The hours passed by. The sun cast a long shadow
across the world, and Teala slowly stood up, for it was her time to go. With
Krusk upon her arm she had begun to walk away from the luminous mountain behind
her, from the were-Lupes, from her home. No, she had no home back there; her
father had showed her that. She was not walking away from everything, but towards
the light. She was leaving behind a dark past, and making her way towards the
vast desert, to her brother's aid, and to a new future. She was unsure of what
her future may hold. It may hold happiness, it may hold death, but Teala was
willing to risk all to set eyes upon her brother's face once more… to find a
Teala gathered up her stuff, she planned to
leave really soon, for a settlement that should only be a few hours walk from
where they currently stood. So upon slinging her bow over her shoulder, she
set off, with Krusk firmly wrapped around her wrist.
Slowly, the two walked out past the shadow of
the mountain, and away from all the trees. Now all there was to be seen was
a tree here, a bush there, and many, many weeds. They had been walking for many
hours, and darkness was setting in upon them, and they were yet to see any signs
of habitation, and soon Teala was starting to wonder if they were even headed
in the right direction.
Her doubts were getting stronger, when Krusk
squeezed tighter around her wrist. "What is it?" Teala asked the Reptillior
"It isss getting quite dark. We probably ssshould
"You are right," she said stopping, and
then sitting down in the soft dirt. "I just wish that I had brought food, or
maybe a blanket when I left. It will probably be freezing tonight, exposed out
in this air." She let out a sigh, "Oh well. At least I'm not stuck back at home,
and besides if I had brought anything, the were-Lupes would have taken it."
And then she lay down with her hands behind her head, acting as her only pillow
for the night. Krusk slithered up besides her, and upon curling into a tight
ball of scale, went to sleep.
Luckily for the two, the night was quite warm,
being that they were coming closer to the desert, and even so, the morning was
a fine one. Teala woke up, opening her eyes to the morning sun's glare. She
smiled at the form of Krusk lying besides her with his scales covered in a fine
dew. Teala stood up, and spun around with her arms spun wide. "What a morning,"
she said to Krusk as he opened his red eyes.
Teala walked over, and picked up Krusk, and
her bow and arrows, and then began to walk once more. She didn't care that they
would go without breakfast as she gazed out at the wonderful morning. They started
on their walk once more, in hope of reaching a settlement by noon. However their
hopes were literally trampled.
Teala stopped suddenly, listening intensively
to a thud that sounded like many hoof beats against the ground. She was trying
to figure out the location of the sound when in the distance, but coming on
close, she saw the rising of much dust. "What's that!" she cried out, looking
out at the dots that lined the distance.
"I don't know, but it looksss asss if it isss
coming thisss way," Krusk said, though Teala didn't need him to tell her
that in order for her to know. There was the sound of braying, and a shatter
of hoof-beats, and then Teala got her first glance of what was coming. It was
a large heard of whinny's and they were being pursued by several Grundos upon
the backs of large shaggy Lupes.
Teala jumped out of the way as the Whinny's
turned once more, and headed straight for her, and then as she escaped being
trampled by the Whinnys, one of the Grundos kicked her as he rode by. "Get out
of our way!"
Teala looked up to see as the Grundo spun a
large cord above his head, and then let it go. The rope went around one of the
younger Whinny's necks, and the poor creature let out a very loud wine (probably
where its name came from thought Teala) as the Grundo and Gelert pulled it down
to the ground. Another Grundo did the same to yet another of the creatures.
Suddenly from out of the blue, a very large
whinny that was easily twice as large as the others came bounding out. It let
out a large snort, and reared up by the Grundo nearest to Teala, making him
drop the rope he held which bound the young whinny to him, and almost immediately,
the young steed ran off to join the others, who seemed to turn and watch as
the large whinny fought back against the Grundos
"Ai! We've gotten him out of the heard! Let's
take him down boys!" Teala heard a brown Grundo yell, and soon, the Grundos
had their Gelert mounts surrounding the great steed. They each threw ropes over
his neck, and as he gave a rear, made it hard for the Grundos to hold on. Even
so, slowly the steed was being pulled down to the ground, and Teala could not
help but feel despaired as the mighty steed was pushed into the dirt, his nostrils
As one of the Grundos jumped off his Gelert
steed, and then slapped the mighty whinny upon the ground, the anger faired
up inside of Teala. With a cry, she lunged herself at the attacking Grundos,
who at being surprised with her actions, jumped away from the whinny, not knowing
what she was.
The large whinny immediately took the chance
of escape, pulling his head out of his bonds, and galloping back to his heard,
which wasn't very far away, for he was their leader.
Teala stood with her bow strung. She had really
set her foot in it this time. She had gone and angered the gang of Grundos,
and their Gelerts, and was now surrounded by the lot of the, all brandishing
short swords, and closing the gap. "Let's show that gal that no one messes with
the riding Grundo's of Lancoth!!!"
"Lancoth!" Teala spat out the name. She knew
who the desert thief was. The red fur along her back tensed at the name of the
evil desert thief. "It makes sense that trash like you would work for him!"
"AI!" the lead Grundo, a blackish one yelled,
"I'll slice you in two for that insult!" but before the Grundo could urge his
Gelert mount forward, it yelped, and fell to the ground. Upon its foreleg was
a certain greyish Reptillior, with his fangs leaking poison into the wound.
As the Grundo tumbled off of the Gelert, Teala
let loose an arrow, which ended the Grundo's career right there.
Upon seeing their leaders destruction, the other
Grundos became enraged. They charged Teala, swords held high in the air. Teala
managed to let out one more well aimed arrow before they were upon her.
Suddenly, there was a loud neighing sound, and
hoofs flailed out in front of Teala's face. Teala looked up in amazement at
the large whinny before, fending off the Grundos from her as if she were a poor
injured youngling. Teala shook her head, and stood up to help out the whinny.
She stretched out her bow, letting arrow after arrow into the rider's ranks.
As they were slowly being defeated, the last of the Grundos gave out a cry,
and then urged their Gelerts out of the way, and disappeared into the distance.
"Well, it seams as if we can't come upon Lancoth
in secret," Teala said scratching her long red hair. "At least we can come bringing
fear and doubt."
Teala jumped as she felt a nuzzle against her
leg, and smiled as she saw a young whinny bumping her with its snout, the larger
one standing in the background, appearing magnificent against the sunset, with
the wind blowing it's tail. The little one nudged her again, and then Krusk
came up. "He thanksss you for saving their leader."
"Huh! Krusk, can you understand them???"
"Yesss, of courssse, I can. What did you think,
that petpetsss can't underssstand each other?"
Teala looked at him, and then said, "No matter,
can you tell them what I want to say?"
"I don't have to. They can underssstand you
fine," Krusk said with a smile.
"Okay, then," she said turning towards
the great whinny. "Thank you," she said. "If it weren't for you, I would have
been taken." And she was responded with several little whines.
"He sssaysss that it never will be a problem
to help sssomeone who is againssst Lancoth, and to just ask if you need any
help," said Krusk. "Apparently, he hasss been attacking the heard for a very
long time, and isss after Windspeed here. That isss his name."
Teala smiled at her friend, and then looked
back up to Windspeed. "There is something that you could help me with Windspeed.
I have been locking for the location of Lancoth." And with this name most of
the Whinnys begun to get unsteady, but were quieted by a loud call of Windspeed.
"Well," continued Teala, "I need directions as to his whereabouts, for I do
believe that my brother is either in his custody, or was killed by him. Either
way I plan to give him something that he won't forget too soon!"
Windspeed let out a loud grunt, his show of
anger towards Lancoth, and then he made a few more indecipherable words before
bending down towards the ground. "He saysss that he will take you to Lancoth.
He sssaysss to hop upon hisss back, a rare courtesssy."
Indeed it was rare for the leader of the Whinnys
to let anyone other then a whinny even touch him, let alone ride upon his back.
So when Teala jumped up on his back, the other Whinnys let out grunts of surprise
Windspeed turned towards the other Whinnys, and told them in his language to
stay back, and to await his return, and then he galloped off towards the horizon.
Windspeed truly lived up to his name, Teala
thought, for he could run almost as fast as the wind. He was alone special among
all Whinnys Large enough to carry a passenger, and more black then white, he
also did not wear the strange assortment of coverings that most whinny's wore
over their heads and backs. He was not born in captivity like most Whinnys are,
which is when they are clothed with the garments, but he was born wild. His
father was a strong runaway, who found no love for Neopians. His mother, the
most fair, and swift of all the others, escaped into the wild after leading
a life of abuse from a previous owner. Windspeed was still young when they were
killed. Cornered against a canyon wall, his father gave his life to the hunters
who had come after he and his mother while trying to protect them. Windspeed
could still remember his mother's cry as the hunters took her down by use of
The hunters then tackled him, tying his mouth
with rope, and leading him far away from his birth home, to the vast reaches
of the desert. They were cruel to him, everyday making him do things against
his will, and whipping him if he faltered of stumbled. Soon he learned that
they worked for an even crueler owner… Lancoth the desert thief. Windspeed learned
to despise that name, even loath the sound of it upon a creatures tongue. Everyday
of this torture only made Windspeed stronger, and everyday he bid his time,
waiting for a chance of escape, until the day it came… unexpected by all.
Windspeed stood in his stall, looking out at
the morning sun as it glistened down upon his snout. Suddenly, a large shadow
flew over the camp, and he could hear the cries of "DRAGON!" coming from the
evil workers. He reared up, to try and get a look at the dragon, for he had
heard tell of them, and was curious. However, he did not have to read up to
lay his eyes on this sight, for the dragon came to him. It opened each of the
doors in turn which held the Whinnys captive. The last door he opened was Windspeed's,
and upon letting him out, Windspeed looked up at the dragon in awe. He was large,
and white… all white except for his blue eyes. And he was beautiful, yes, a
beautiful sight to look upon.
"Why do you not run in fear like all the others
that I have released? In stead you stare up at me with longing eyes. Do you
not fear that I shall eat you?" The white dragon said in a mystic voice.
"No, I hold no fear. If you were to eat me,
wouldn't you have done so already? Besides, something as great as a dragon needs
not eat a small whinny like me, for I am but a morsel for your great mouth."
At this the great white dragon smiled. "You
are indeed a rarity among Whinnys I must grant you something to show that you
have the dragon's praise." He bent down low, and touched his scaly snout to
Windspeed's. Windspeed felt the changes then. He felt stronger, swifter, and
bigger. His eyes had a new gleam in them, one that only dealers with dragons
receive. "You shall be important. I can tell it already, you have a certain
air about you that says so."
"Thank you great dragon," said Windspeed to
the large reptile.
"I shall hence forward name you Windspeed, for
you are as fast as the wind." Then he spread his great wings wide. "If we are
to ever meet again, for I feel destiny leads us that way, you may call me Dreamoth!"
and then the great dragon flew off into the sky to pursue the rest of the thieves
who had held Windspeed. The whinny smiled, and then galloped off ready to start
a new life.
Windspeed gathered together a large crowd of
following Whinnys throughout the years, and created his large heard. He was
their protector, and leader, both wise and strong. He still could not work out
in his mind why he left his heard to go with Teala, for she was not of his race.
He did not know what, but something pulled him to do it, and all he could think
of was Dreamoth. Perhaps this mission of late would reunite him with the dragon
that had bestowed such a gift upon him. His heart raced with joy just thinking
of it. He would give half of his tail willingly to just lay eyes upon those
sparkling white scales once more. Perhaps he would get the chance.