True Sisters: Part Nine
After we made it off of the battlefield, I took Fan immediately
to one of the emergency tents we'd had set up. The kind Gelert nurse took her
in and put her to bed. After a quick checkup, I was assured that she would be
all right, but she must be moved to the castle, where she could get better care.
Nodding, I signed the release form and hopped in the carriage they provided. Uni
nurses came and hooked themselves up to the front. Right before we took off, Lyra
jumped through the door.
"Lyra!" I exclaimed, and she snuggled close to
me. I smiled and put her near the other Fan, who received her just as warmly.
Soon, the two were asleep and I looked on softly, wondering what would happen
When we arrived, Fan was immediately taken away
to the hospital ward. I, alas, was not allowed to go with her, but I contented
myself with eating a small feast of food set before me. While I eagerly shoveled
the hot stew into my mouth, my clothes were washed and my cloak repaired. Soon,
I was warm, fed, and clean clothed. However, I still couldn't see her, I was
supposed to wait until they got confirmation from Sir Aaron.
"But they won't get here for 2 days! Please.
I must speak with her!" I yelled, angry with them for keeping me away from the
girl I now considered my friend. I was, however, ignored. Sighing, I pulled
Lyra behind some curtains and showed her my new skill. She jumped for joy and
I realized why.
"Oh Fan, this is great! Now we can talk to each
other!" she exclaimed, and I realized that as a Petpet, I could understand the
"This is great Lyra, but right now, we have
to get to Fanteni. Follow me." And I took off down the hall, Lyra loping after
me. We were relatively ignored again, many stray petpets roamed the halls, but
this time it was good. Squeezing into Fan's door, I changed back and went up
to her. She was lying in a big, fluffy bed. Her eyes were closed and her breathing
was even. She looked liked royalty, with the shadows of rain playing off of
her face. I kneeled next to the bed.
"Fan," I whispered. "Can you hear me?"
She opened her star-bright eyes and smiled up
"Oh, Fanteni, I was so worried! I'm so sorry
that I hurt you like that."
"Don't worry, I know. It's ok. You were just
doing what you thought was necessary. Like I was. I was absolutely horrid, wasn't
I? Oh dear. I do hope they'll catch Hovard before he gets any farther."
"The Skeith. You know his plan? I only found
out about it last night, and I was going to talk to him about it earlier, but
then you all came and everything just happened so fast." She sighed. "To think,
take over Neopia. Sloth couldn't do it, why did he think he could?"
"Beats me," I replied. "So, this whole battle,
you thought you were getting back the flute? Over a big battle?"
"I know, I know. Pretty dumb, wasn't I? But,
my grandmother meant the world to me, and those people, they said it was my
fault. I know now that it wasn't, but I thought that maybe I could bring her
back with... with the flute. Do you have it?"
I looked down at my floor. What should I say?
"Yes, I have it."
I cautiously handed it over. She examined the
instrument, smiles fluttering on and off of her face. Before I could say a thing,
she put the flute to her lips.
The music was beautiful, so much more beautiful
and heart wrenching than I had ever accomplished, that a tear fell from my eye.
Seeing this, Fan immediately changed the music.
"How did she do that?" I wondered; in all my
experiences the flute had taken control, though I was able to tell it roughly
what to accomplish. She merely winked and played on. When the beautiful song
was over, she handed the flute back and popped right out of bed. I gaped at
her but she smiled.
"I knew she'd heal me."
"My grandmother; she controls the flute and what
it does anyway," she stated, as if it was a well-known fact. "Say, do they have
anything to eat around here?"
After another hearty meal, Fanteni and I retired
to her room to discuss her future, which was currently looking pretty grim.
"How are you going to get back?" I inquired,
twirling the flute in my fingers. "If I claem you back, I might go back too,
and then I'll have trouble getting anywhere and..."
"Who says I want to go back?" she reprimanded.
"There's nothing for me there anymore. No, I don't want to go back."
"Well, do you want to stay here?"
"No, that doesn't work for me either. I don't
know anybody," she argued weakly. "Actually, what I was thinking..."
The sound of stomping feet and cries of welcome
caused her to stop. I perched on the windowsill and looked into the courtyard
below. The soldiers were home! I heard the tramp of boots on the stairs and
in rushed Tid, followed closely by Morbid.
"Tid! Morbid!" I cried, running over to them,
hugging them tightly. Both of them looked over my shoulder and saw Fan, automatically
stiffening within my grasp. Releasing them, I turned towards her.
"Fan, these are my sisters, Tid and Morbid.
Tid, Morbid, this is Fanteni." Fan nodded politely, and my two sisters mumbled
hello. Shaking my head, I pulled them outside real quick.
"Hey guys, it's great to see you, but could
you be, well, nice to her? She's feeling very guilty and confused right now,
so it'd be great if you could just sit and listen."
Morbid just nodded, but Tid spoke right up.
"Why should we? She just tried to take over Neopia! Why should we just let her
be?" She seemed genuinely angry, so I explained the whole situation to her under
my breath in hurried terms. When I finished she snorted, annoyed, but followed
me into the room quietly.
When we got back inside, Fanteni was staring
out the window, but she turned around the second we re-entered. She spoke, determinedly
and without hesitation.
"I want to move in with you."
The next day was a flurry of packing and goodbyes.
Fan, who was soon to become our sister, and the three of us were invited to
a special lunch with Sir Aaron and Cinpate, but we politely refused.
"We really must be going. My owner will be so
worried!" I argued with Aaron, somewhat angry at his stubbornness.
Aaron looked sad, and he hung his head. A rush
of sorrow hit me: we would never see each other again.
"Oh, Aaron, I didn't mean it that way..."
"No, Fan. I understand." He looked up at me,
and though his eyes glistened with tears, he smiled. "Your owner will be worried
about you. I can't keep you guys all to myself." He wrapped me in a tight hug,
his large paws shaking slightly. I hugged him back.
"We're leaving in a little under an hour...
you'll be there?"
"Who won't be?" he joked, considering the kings
were holding a large goodbye ceremony, which we planned to skip.
Thirty minutes later, all six of us, Morbid,
Tid, Fante, Cinpate, Aaron, and me, rushed into the attic of Aaron's house.
Fante held to flute tightly and swiveled her head at the smallest sound while
we said our goodbyes tearlessly, this was no time for dramatics. Then, we were
formally presented with our weapons in a small ceremony conducted by Cinpate.
"Carry your swords well and use them only for
the best. Now, you must go. I believe I hear trumpets." He smiled weakly.
Our words had run out... there was nothing more
to say. Fante directed us to make a circle and we held hands tightly, petpets
clinging to our backs. She put the flute to her beak and began to play...
The process was the same, if not easier than
the last time. Cinpate and Aaron faded away, the wood became old, windows cracked,
"FAN?!" called Summer, from downstairs. "What
are you doing up there?"
The four of us shook the dust off our shoulders
and looked at each other with wide eyes. We were back, but it was the same time!
"Yahooo!" yelled Tid, jumping into the air wildly.
"We did it! We did it!" She began to dance, moving her horns this way and that.
"Tid?" called Summer. "Are you okay?"
"Okay? I'm great!" She grabbed her Exploration
Suit and rushed down the stairs to tell Summer everything, Morbid hot on her
heels. I, meanwhile, grabbed some extra boxes and stuffed our weapons away.
I turned to Fante and she placed the flute in solemnly. We placed the box in
the corner together and looked over at the staircase together.
"Well," she said. "I guess this is it."
I grabbed her hand and we descended into the
house together... just like sisters should.