Tangled Up in Blu: Part Eight
War is a relentless thing.
The loud clash of weapons filled the otherwise silent Maraquan evening. The setting sun transformed the daytime aqua water into a canvas of colors ranging from red to green, basking the underwater inhabitants in a rainbow of colors. Metal and Maractite shone in the myriad of colors swimming in the depths.
Blu swung her cutlass at an approaching warrior, sending him flying backwards. Fending off the hordes of soldiers coming at her, she utilized all of her resources to keep herself safe. But as someone attacked from behind, Blu was knocked off guard. She stumbled forward and fell to the ground with a thump. She watched as the offender raised his mace to strike her. As she braced herself for the blow, a figure leaped in front of her and stopped the mace with a skillful swipe of his sword. Zwane shoved the soldier away then helped Blu up.
“Stay on your toes,” he warned. “You have to expect the unexpected.” And with that being said, he raced off to fight another warrior.
Vzelle easily deflected any attacks aimed at her with a flick of the wrist. Her water bending rendered all straightforward attacks useless, leaving her opponents powerless. Her trademark smug smirk plastered across her face, she knocked another soldier off his feet with a swift current of water. Whipping her net around with her bending, she flung enemies aside.
Zwane's previous experiences in wars were greatly aiding him here. His skill with a blade kept his enemies at bay, fearing the slashing Maractite sword. His ability to quickly rotate between his bow and sword also proved to be an invaluable skill, as it was needed many times. Shooting frost arrows that sliced through the water, he could easily stop a faraway Dehytreznian in its tracks. Zwane also believed that his skills should be used to aid his comrades, so he was constantly rescuing other warriors from dire situations. As another invader approached, Zwane quickly dodged the spear it threw, catching it and launching it back at its owner. He smiled and moved onto the next foe.
Mephtik was completely armed with Dehytreznian weapons. He also sported a helmet, shield, and chest plate. The prison guard had volunteered to join the struggle against Maraqua. However, he planned to avoid all unnecessary violence. He wasn’t here to defeat Maraqua; it was quite the opposite. The elephante was here to warn the good people of Maraqua of a traitor in their ranks. He was certain that no one would listen to an enemy soldier. No one, that was, but the girl who started it all.
“Blu!” Mephtik roared. He had to find her as quickly as possible. Who knows what could happen if the traitor wasn’t stopped? Swimming as fast as he could manage, Mephtik searched the battleground for the Island Gelert.
Blu’s acute Gelert hearing picked up a frantic shout of her name. Swiveling her head, she scoured the landscape for the source of the call. Before she could fully sweep the area for the source of the sound, her cobalt eyes fell upon Vzelle.
Vzelle was caught up in keeping an enemy Maraquan Grundo at bay with her water bending, sending powerful jets of water streaming at him. Then, as if in slow motion, a fierce Maraquan Mynci swung at Vzelle’s head. His club reached its target with a solid thump and sent Vzelle sprawling to the ground.
Blu took no longer than a second to react. Sheathing her sword, she swam over to the fallen Vzelle.
“Blu!” Mephtik spotted the frantic Gelert as she sped towards the island Eyrie. There was so little time left.
Blu’s mind was racing, as it often did in periods of great emotional strain. Thoughts of concern mingled with intuition’s instructions raced through her mind. As angry blames ricocheted back and forth, Blu couldn’t help to stop the nagging possibility the logical side of her brain was telling her. The fearful thought easily surpassed the others and was repeating itself in the front of Blu’s mind. You never know, you may have to assume the worst...
She reached Vzelle in a matter of seconds. Her subconscious mind kept her legs moving; the rest of her brain was preoccupied with palling thoughts of what the blow could’ve done. Blu knelt next to the Eyrie, her pale tan and white legs resting against the cream colored sand. Tan eyelids hid the ultramarine eyes of the Eyrie, the glinting gems that went aglow with each trademark smirk. Blu ran a trembling white paw over the face of her mentor. Vzelle’s eyes fluttered open at her touch.
“Blu?” Her voice was unsure. Her eyes were clouded over as if looking through Blu into something bigger than her. She was there, but she wasn’t.
“Yes, it’s me. You took a hard blow from an enemy soldier.” Blu knew she was barely conscious.
“Ah. Good. I needed to see you...” Her voice was distant. “I don’t have much time, but I can be helped... The trident... it can restore me... in the armory... go; bring it to me... quickly, Blu, or else...” And she faded away.
Blu knew she had no choice. The Trident’s power was great, and it would be risky to take it out in the open. After all, it caused this war. Seeing that she had no other reasonable option, Blu became determined. She would get that Trident. And she would help the island Eyrie who had helped her so much.
Vzelle. Mentor, ally, rival, friend. It was all the same to Blu.
There is no sound in the world that has as many meanings as silence. Whether it means you are alone, or in a room full of people who just won’t speak, it’s not very pleasant. It could mean that danger is approaching, or it’s the sound of the aftermath. Silence is the absence of noise, but to many, it’s unbearably loud. With no other noisy distractions, thoughts shout the loudest. And no one wants to be alone with their thoughts, for many are their own worst enemy.
Blu wished that someone would break this intolerable silence. If only the soothing voice of a friend would ring out in the castle’s halls. It would be a wonderful change of pace from the swish of her paws. The water slid past her body as she quietly swam around the castle halls. She had to find the armory where Vzelle said the Trident was. It was her only hope.
Swimming aimlessly in the labyrinth of halls for fifteen minutes, Blu finally came across a door with the words ‘Armory’ printed across it. Pushing the door open, she swam inside.
Weapons lined the walls and crates sat stacked on the floor. The usual Maractite weapons were visible as well as a few Blu didn’t know existed. But little time could be spent dwelling on weaponry. The dim light in the room was shattered by an intense ray of light in the center. A turquoise trident was suspended in a glass container. It oozed a malodorous green slime; the scent of it pierced the thick glass and drifted through the room. Seaweed leis hung from the prongs as well as the handle. The Trident was something to behold; it let off a dull blue glow which Blu assumed was from its power. Taking a step towards it, she kept her guard up. It was more than likely that the Trident would be heavily guarded. She reached the container with a few strokes and placed a hesitant paw on the glass. Nothing happened. Her eyes traveled down to the keypad built into the base of the glass dome. The word ‘VIRTUPETS’ was typed across the top of the keypad, boldly advertising the machine’s origin. Neon green letters stood out against a black screen, asking for a password.
“Oh, what in Fyora? A password?” Blu murmured in frustration. What would the password be? So many choices... And she probably only had one guess before she set off an alarm or booby trap.
Origins maybe? A completely random set of numbers? A name? A historical figure? The possibilities are endless! Blu was at a loss. There’s no way she could figure out the password.
“Imohakua.” Blu said it aloud, letting the echo bounce around the room. It made perfect sense. The water mage used the Trident to found Maraqua; Imohakua members were blessed with water bending. Having no other guess, Blu entered it with the keypad. The computer processed the word, before speaking in its digital voice.
The weapons lining the walls burst into supernatural movement, flying in beelines for the Gelert. Eyes wide, she fended off the speeding weapons with her sword. In a matter of seconds, Blu was overwhelmed. There were hundreds, maybe thousands of weapons in the room, and all of them were flying towards her at awing speeds. The gears of her mind shifted into overdrive as she tried to pull herself out of the lethal situation.
“Ah-hah!” Blu shouted in triumph. It was a risky maneuver, but it was her only hope. Carefully angling her sword, she deflected a speeding spear before it hit her. Poising herself for a jump, she followed the spear’s path with her eyes as it ricocheted off of her sword, deflecting off the wall and heading back towards her face with exponentially increase speed. Timing it just right, she was able to leap over the spear. It made contact with the glass dome, shattering the glass with its impact.
“One more thing,” Blu commented as she poised herself for another jump. She leapt deftly into the air, feeling a current of water pass underneath her as a mace flew into the computer panel. Its rounded head shattered the computer system. It was a risky strategy; the computer could shut down, or it could continue firing weapons with no way to stop it. Thankfully, the former happened. The suspended weapons fell to the ground. The room was in a shambles; glass, weapons, metal, and the remains of a computer littered the floor. Blu was just happy to be alive.
She took a hesitant step towards the now accessible Trident. It still glowed with its uncanny green glow; seaweed still hung from its prongs. Blu extended a shaky paw and grabbed the handle. Squeezing her eyes shut, she braced herself for the worst.
Breathing a sigh of relief, Blu let a smile play on her lips. She did it. She had the Trident.
“Ch’yeah!” she cried out in jubilance. Now all that was left were the small matters of the injured friend and the raging war.
To be continued...