Telltale the Darigan Dancer: Part Two
Morning struck like an arrow. Chantel was nervous. She was
roughly woken by Morguss and lead away with a few crumbs to two Eyrie Soldiers.
They glared at her and hauled her out roughly, until Chantel threatened to toast
them into ashes. Reluctantly they let go.
Outside a dull blue Zafara cloaked in dull coloured
clothing stared at them. When the gypsy Aisha looked into the Zafara's eyes
she shuddered. The eyes were empty.
"Let's go," one of the Eyrie Guards snapped,
harshly tugging at her arm. Chantel shot a dirty look at both the guards, then
began the voyage.
On the way, Chantel began studying the Zafara.
This was an agent loyal to Kass; a trickster Double Agent with no name. Kass
always returned mock favor every time she came back with the news.
The dancer took a deep breath and brought up
a topic. "Is Meridell a peaceful place?"
"Not always," was the short reply. Chantel continued
jabbering, hoping for some answers.
"I've always dreamed of seeing Meridell, but
you know my mother Morguss. I'm nervous. I'm gonna be dancing in front of the
King of Meridell. What if I trip or fall while dancing?"
"You shouldn't be afraid. King Skarl can sense
fear, even as much as you hide it."
Great, thought Chantel grimly. Sometimes reality
stinks like a Pile of Dung.
Unnoticed by the two maidens, the circlet glowed.
A name filled Chantel's head. "Does the name, Zephyrne, sound familiar to you?"
Double Agent was deep in pondering. And Chantel
knew she was right. The Zafara just didn't know.
* * * * * * * *
When Chantel stepped in the courtroom, she felt
as if she was in heaven. Beautiful stained glass from Brightvale surrounded
the halls, where beams of light shot past and made rainbows on the ground. Some
mirrors hung and Meridellians winked at her. She blushed.
Then she held her breath. King Skarl sat at his
throne. This was it. She could run away and be mocked forever, or she would
try and succeed and feel guilty to the core. She stepped forward, her feet feeling
"I am at your service, your Majesty," she said
as sweet as she could, but her voice cracked at the last two words. She cursed
under her breath for her bad fortune.
"A dancer, eh?" the King replied. "State your
name, young Aisha."
The dancer panicked. Should I give him a
fake name? "Chantel," she said bluntly.
"Alright the, Chantel, let's see what you can
Chantel began by tapping her foot. The rhythm
went one beat slow, then two beats fast. A flute played beautiful tunes as she
shook her tambourine, adding some jingle to the music. She spread her arms and
twirled, occasionally tapping the tambourine. She leaped. What a wonderful time
she was having! Laughter and applause filled the air, followed by some whistling.
Suddenly pain winced in her head. Nobody noticed
the Circlet's strange patterns glowing sharply. She faltered and began hopping
on one foot, sensing the Meridellians raising eyebrows and exchanging chances.
A few snickers rose from the crowd, and King Skarl slumped into his chair.
Suddenly her mind was ablur. Chantel grinned
and continued, this time a smirk on her face. She saw an Acara who extended
his arm towards Chantel. The brown Aisha strutted over, a soft green glow coiling
around his arm that swirled into his mind. His eyes went into swirling orange
and green circles and grinned goofy.
She smiled at a blue Shoyru, who too was watching
closely. Everybody was watching. She seized the magic that flowed from her grasps
that hypnotized the Shoyru. She did this to a yellow Zafara, a starry Lupe and
a red Kau. Getting bored, her eyes glanced the Draik guards flying at her with
their spears. Chantel giggled like a naughty child and swirled her arms, the
energy flowing everywhere in the room. The Draiks dropped their spears and stared
at the Court Dancer.
Then her gaze extended to King Skarl, being
halfway up the steps. Her mind returned to normal and she nearly fell back,
but the Orb was taunting her. Slowly the black magic from it controlled her
mind, making her extend her paw of strong energy that was targeted at Skarl...
"Incredible! You MUST dance for me EVERYDAY!"
were the words that escaped his mouth without thinking, his eyes in swirls.
Chantel, who was still under the influence of
the Orb, gave a sly smile to the King. "As you wish, your Majesty," she said
soothingly, and winked, slipping her paw away from his chin.
She turned at the court, which was booming with
a wonderful ovation. She continued to slip past them, knowing she had it all:
beauty, grace, and attention.
"You're staying here, got it?" the Eyrie Guards
told her before they left.
"Don't worry," she whispered, and touched the
guards. Their eyes went into swirls before the Court Dancer removed the spell.
"I'll be very happy here."
When she reached the enormous room, the Orb
stopped controlling her. Chantel returned back. She saw everything. She wished
to know who was controlling her like some puppet! She reached for the circlet,
but instead of lifting the pretty piece the thing seemed to bond with her, as
though it was whispering, "No."
Once again the Aisha let go. She slipped into
a simple nightgown, plopped down in the canopy bed and fell fast asleep.
* * * * * * * *
Meanwhile Lord Kass was deep in thinking to himself.
The Three were still not pleased.
"Kass," Morsus the ghost Gelert of the Three
had reminded him, "you're the ruler of the Citadel, and if you want to stay
that way, then you have to come up with better plans that would please us."
The Eyrie wasn't that dumb. He was very careful
of picking Spellcasters and spies. He realized they were all female. He had
selected them for a certain reason, for one, they seemed to be more agile and
good thinkers. They also seemed very attractive, such as Chantel who was under
the spell of beauty and the Orb.
He remembered Chantel being the favorite of
Lord Darigan, and he treated her like a daughter, even though it was Kass who
slain Chantel's father.
Jared was a very skilled knight, an expert on
Uniback. He was good with lances and spears, and had great speed. He was friends
with Darrell, a Darigan Zafara swordsman. They were both attacked and doomed
by Kass when he was still a former general. Only Double Agent knew of what had
happened to her mother and father. Of course she never knew, Kass chuckled,
recalling how he used the tactic.
He wondered just when the Spell of the Orb would
break; the Orb's power wasn't going to control her for long, but it would be
enough the launch an attack on pitiful Meridell...
* * * * * * * *
Several days passed. Dancing for the King and
his court seemed delighting for the Court Dancer Chantel in her new dazzling
look, and every time the Orb ordered a command, the Aisha would accept the circlet's
power becoming part of her. She enjoyed dancing, and she enjoyed hanging around
Meridell, talking sweetly to everyone around.
Wouldn't Lord Kass be pleased? she thought
one day as she winked at a group of Meridellian warriors.
Then her mind snapped to reality. "Lord Kass?!"
she muttered. "More like Lord Stupid! That name is wrong! I'd walk back
all the way from here to Kreludor before I'd call him...LORD Kass! Gahh!"
She kicked open the door of her room, threw
open the closet and carefully chose a new dress. She was too tired of the normal
dresses Morguss assigned her to wear, so she grabbed a beautiful Meridell dress,
fit for a princess. Besides, she needed to eavesdrop a bit.
She quickly removed one gold hoop and placed
that on her left ear, just as any Meridellian Mistress would. Fitting on the
white ruffled undergarment first, she found it rather itchy. She threw on the
red dress, and realized the skirt would poof out, along with puffy red sleeves
that stopped and the paw and tightened with more white ruffles. A gold ribbon
belt with a buckle representing Meridell's shield tightened the waist, and somewhere
the gold turned blue, therefore making it into a blue bow at the rear. There
was also a gold choker with the shield decoration. Chantel grimaced and longed
to throw off the dress before she'd itch to death.
She arranged her hair in a stylish flip and
threw bangs over the circlet, which somehow she could not take off! Applying
powder to her face and changing eyeshadow, she forced herself to step outside.
"I just hate these Meridell dresses," she muttered,
walking out the door. She saw Zephyrne staring at her, and gave a wan smile.
"How do I look?"
"Quite pretty," Zephyrne said simply. These
days Chantel would continuously call Double Agent Zephyrne, and as much as the
Zafara Double Agent denied it, her name was Zephyrne. Chantel had seen a strange
vision; the Orb caused it, and saw that her parents were destroyed in a strange
blue fire, caused by a powerful mage. Magi could only cause different coloured
flames; the Court Dancer successfully tried turning a torch light purple. There
was another figure in the background, but she couldn't see it. She did see that
the figure attacked both of them. That got Chantel thinking about her father.
Morguss had told a few details and bits in spare
time. "Your father was a Brown Aisha, one of Lord Darigan's most trusted fighters.
He was taken by part of the curse," -Morguss snarled at the word- "and became
"Did the curse take over his mind?" Chantel
had asked. It was a trick question; she predicted when the curse struck, it
stuck with her mother for eternity.
Morguss glared at her. "You're too nosy for
your own good," she sternly advised, and stormed out of her daughter's room.
Chantel shook the thought out of her mind. She
hardly believed Meridell slain her father, and pranced past Zephyrne and down
the hall who gaped at many a picture.
- TO BE CONTINUED... -