Legend Seekers: Destiny Discovered - Part Four
That was the second fall Pemero had suffered
so far - he just wasn't used to scaling rocks. Luckily, he was uninjured, save
for a scrape on one shoulder.
This is harder than I thought it would be.
Ignoring the pain in his left shoulder, Pemero
dug his claws in deeper and pulled himself onto a ledge at the halfway point.
It was better than nothing. Still, it would be best to rest for a while now.
"Well, you've got this far," remarked the voice.
"So, you're back," Pemero replied, grinning.
"I was afraid I'd imagined you."
"Maybe you did." The cub couldn't see it, but
the owner of the voice was smirking at him.
"I'm glad you're back, anyway. I was getting
lonely again. So, uh... where were you?" he asked.
"Oh, just tending to business. Do you wonder
about your lost friend often?"
"Oh, yeah... what can I do about it, though?"
"Don't worry. She's strong enough, and you will
see her again. I promise," said the voice quite sincerely.
"Thanks," Pemero beamed. "It means a lot. Well,
time to move on!"
"Go ahead, little one. I daresay I'll meet you
at the top." Again, Pemero missed the smirk hiding in the voice, and just smiled
at thin air.
The journey grew progressively tougher. Pemero
noticed that the higher he climbed, the steeper and harder to grip the rock
It didn't help that his vision was next to useless
thanks to the bright, blinding, unnatural sunlight.
His injury was growing worse by the second -
he would soon have to stop and tend to it. The next ledge was only a few meters
away, just out of reach. He edged closer and closer, until finally his nimble
claws grasped the edge, and he pulled himself onto it.
Panting, he opened his rucksack to get the packet
of wound salves out. Luckily, there was still one left - he had wondered if
there would be, since he and Jen used most of them in the jungle. The Kougra
carefully applied the treatment, then dove into his bag once more for a Juppie.
"You're taking your sweet time, aren't you?"
asked the voice of the Faerie, impatient as ever.
"I'll be at the top tomorrow. I promise," said
Pemero. "Unless something goes wrong..."
"Well, it had better not. That's all." And with
that, the voice departed, leaving Pemero to his thoughts.
What had the Faerie meant? Surely, it didn't
matter to her how long he took in reaching the top. He had planned to take things
slowly for the next few days, and make sure nothing went wrong - now, he'd have
to dash and hope for the best.
Jen wouldn't want you to get hurt, he
But then, getting hurt is part and parcel
of being an adventurer.
With that in mind, he leapt onto the wall of
stone, determined to reach the highest level. It was harder than it looked,
and that's saying something, but he climbed doggedly until sunrise. Finally,
he stopped again - with just three ledges to go.
I can afford to take another short break,
he thought. But only a short one. I want to see what's up there...
A Light Faerie sat on the mouth of the volcano,
peering down into the magma whilst playing with the bracelet on her right hand.
It felt so good to be powerful. With barely a thought, she could change the
colour of the magma, or even turn it into poison. This still worked best when
the sun was out, but for today, that didn't matter. She would finally get her
Reaching out with her mind, the Faerie realised
Pemero was still resting, but very close. Oh, so close. He wouldn't suspect
a thing, would he? Very brave, to be sure; just not too bright.
There was only one thing that could go wrong,
and she had taken care of that earlier. The bracelet would lock her power in,
so that even if she perished, the magic would die with her - and that was a
satisfying thought. The less magic Fyora had access to, the more vulnerable
their world was.
Besides, Faeries don't die - they reincarnate.
It was perfect - just perfect. Everyone knows that Light Faeries don't do evil
- just like Dark Faeries can never be trusted. Even the queen believed it. Well,
they thought wrong - and they could stay ignorant as far as she was concerned.
Thialma was an expert in covering her tracks
- they might be tracking her for millenia, and it would be too late by then.
Congratulating herself for the eighteenth time that day, she spat into the lava,
turning it bubblegum pink.
Time to play the waiting game.
"Are you there?" Pemero wondered aloud. Silence
answered his question, and he reached into his bag again for a muntando fruit.
The sky was wonderfully bright - almost too bright to be natural. There was
no sign of a tropical storm now, though one had been brewing earlier.
Not far now. Better hurry up, really - don't
want her getting angry with me.
Forcing down his meal quickly, the cub went back
to picking his way up the mountain, step my step, minute by minute.
Two ledges to go.
The sun, if anything was getting even brighter
- his fur was probably shining even through the layers of black sand and dirt.
One more ledge.
Nearly there. This is really exciting - I've
never seen the inside of a volcano before. I just hope there's something I can
take back with me.
Finally, he latched his claws onto the topmost
ledge, and pulled himself onto the narrow platform.
Now for the moment of truth.
The young Kougra peered over the edge of the
volcano, fully expecting to see magma. He did see magma, but it wasn't... normal.
It was blue, and it smelled slightly chemical. Pemero had never seen anything
"So, you've arrived," Thialma said by way of
"So it was you? The voice that I kept hearing?"
"Yes, it was me." Thialma sighed. She wasn't
known for her patience. Or kindness. Or anything to do with Light magic, really.
"Hey! Wait, aren't you...?" he trailed off, staring
at the bracelet on her right wrist. "You're the one I did the quest for in the
"I never rewarded you for that, did I?" Thialma
said sweetly. "It must have... slipped my mind. Come closer," she said.
"Okay," Pemero replied eagerly.
The cub stepped forward carefully, almost slipping,
but catching himself every time with perfect ease. Practice had done him good,
thought Thialma bitterly.
"Now, this might hurt slightly. Whatever you
do, try and be completely still. You don't want to slip over the edge, now do
you?" she said, in her sweetest voice.
"No," replied Pemero. "Okay... I'm ready."
The Faerie stretched her hands out over the cub,
chanting softly so that she wouldn't be heard. Her hands started to glow with
spectral light. Slowly but surely, the glow moved from her hands and into Pemero
- but it didn't stop there. Soon, he looked like a tiny version of the sun.
"Hey, what's happening? What are you -?"
Pemero never got to finish his question. He fell
backwards, unable to support his own weight any longer, and into the mouth of
He hit the blue magma, and started to sink in
it. For some reason, though, it wasn't even singeing him. Just above, the Faerie
was laughing, cheering her victory across the lands. It would be best to play
along - he didn't want to attract her attention.
"Jen..." he said feebly. "I'm... sorry... that
I failed you..."
It seemed to be working - the Faerie laughed
more violently with every word. Suddenly, he became aware that something was
wrong - his eyes and ears were shrouded as he sank beneath the thick liquid.
There might be a cave in the wall - but where?
The clock was ticking - he couldn't stay under for too long, or he'd run out
of air. Fumbling around blindly proved useless - until his paws found a small
hole in the rock. It wasn't much to work with - but it was his only chance.
"So much for adventuring, eh?" Thialma called
down. He cursed himself inwardly. He'd always been a little too trusting - well,
he'd just have to be more careful from now on. The rock grew weaker as he pushed
against it, and finally caved in - creating a huge opening in the wall of the
The glowing blue magma gushed out over the side
of the volcano, flattening another hundred acres of forestland. The cub forced
his head back into the air, and took a deep breath - the flow had slowed down
slightly, but it wasn't stopping.
And it was heading right for the main village
- the one that held all of the tourists, and most of the Island's other residents.
To be continued...