Guardian: Part Four
Part Four: Draco’s Secret
Rionex opened her eyes as the first rays of sunlight illuminated her room. She sat up, making sure she had both of the bands still around her wrists. She sighed when she saw they were both there.
Then she remembered Draco from the night before. There’s something different about him, she told herself silently. But what is it? She jumped out of bed and walked over to the next room. There lay Draco, fast asleep. Carefully, she tiptoed out of the small house they were in.
When she opened the door, a fresh ocean breeze greeted her. She sighed and took out a hair band to braid her orange hair.
As she finished, Draco came outside. “Hello, again,” Draco told her. “I was wondering, after breakfast, would you take me on a tour of the island?”
Rionex turned to look at him. She saw a flash of eerie yellow in his brown eyes, and then it was gone. For a split second, she saw the strange Draik that had attacked her that faithful night, but then that was gone, too. “Well, I don’t know much about the island,” she told him. “You see, this is the first time I’ve been here myself.”
“Well, don’t let that stop you,” Draco told her. “But, if you really don’t want to, I guess that’s fine.”
Rionex shook her head. Stop pretending, she told herself. He seems nice enough. I’ve got to stop worrying about it. But in the back of her mind, Rionex felt that there was something wrong with Draco.
She puzzled over this for a minute, but finally said, “Okay, after breakfast.”
Draco smiled pleasantly. “Great!” he cried. “Now, how about some fruit?”
Back at Rionex’s home, Sage had organized a search party for Rionex. However, no one could find her. Now, Sage sat on the front porch of the house, puzzling out where Rionex had gone. “Why would she go to Krawk Island?” she asked herself. “She doesn’t know about the powers of the bands, nor does she know of the small village living in secret there on the island.” However, Sage knew that any chance the Creature got to get the bands he would take.
Sage decided she needed to head to Krawk Island, to see if maybe Rionex had ended up there. Quickly, Sage packed some food and water in a pack, and then grabbed her old sheath and sword. Sage ran out the door, and took flight.
What Sage didn’t know was that Darkstar and the Creature were waiting for her underneath the water of the lake. As Sage flew over it, the Creature grabbed her with one of his tentacles. She struggled, but could not break free. “We meet again,” the Creature snarled.
“You!” Sage cried. “What did you do with my daughter?”
“Don’t worry,” the Creature hissed. “Somehow, she managed to escape my attack alive. Oh, and don’t worry, Doomflame will take very good care of her.” The Creature gave an evil laugh. Sage struggled, but the Creature used the magic of the coins to turn Sage into stone.
He looked down at Darkstar. “Come on,” he told her, “I’m sure Doomflame won’t be much longer.” As they both submerged themselves back underwater, the Creature’s evil laugh rang through the sky.
After a quick breakfast of fruit, Rionex took Draco to the village. She showed him the places that she knew, along with introducing him to the Warrior Shaman, Dac, and Grog. The Warrior Shaman was suspicious of him at first, but soon that suspicion turned to flattery as Draco charmed her. Rionex even took Draco to the edge of the village by the wooded borders.
Rionex sighed as a slight wind blew through the trees, cooling them both. Then, Draco said, “So, Rionex, why don’t you tell me a little about yourself?”
Rionex turned her head towards him and replied, “Well, I’m fifteen years old, I’m an only child, and I’ve never even heard my dad’s name mentioned in the house.”
“Really?” Draco asked. “Fascinating.” However, as he said it, his eyes took on an eerie yellow glow. However, it disappeared after a few seconds.
Rionex cocked an eyebrow. There’s defiantly something different about him. After a pause, Rionex asked, “So, what’s your life like?”
Draco winced. Once again, good and evil’s war had started to rise within him. In his eyes swirled an eerie yellow color and a gentle brown. Draco groaned and clutched his head. So many thoughts from both sides appeared in his mind.
He was jarred back to reality when Rionex shook him. “Draco?” she asked.
Draco lifted his claws from his head and grimaced. “Head-ache,” he said quietly. Eventually, the magic of the coins pushed his good back. “Well, I have a ‘father’ and a ‘sister’.”
Rionex nodded for him to go on, but he wouldn’t. So, finally, she asked the question that was on her mind; “Draco, since you came here last night, I’ve had this really weird feeling being around you. So, I have a question; is there something... different about you? You know, like something magical?”
Draco looked at her in astonishment. She had guessed it. Part of him was angry, but another was relived. For a brief second, a thought flowed into his mind; Maybe she can free me from this curse. However, that thought was soon pushed aside. “Well... uh...” he stammered. Once again, the good and evil within him had risen to the surface to fight. He wanted to tell Rionex what was going on, so she could help him. But the power the creature had put into him wanted to attack her. He managed, just barely, to say, “Help.”
“Help?” Rionex gasped. Now that she looked at him, she noticed something familiar in his brown eyes. At that moment, she realized that Draco was the monstrous Draik that had attacked her that night. “Draco...” she said, but she was unable to finish before Draco sprang into the air and flew back towards the beach. “Draco!” Rionex cried, and sprang into the air after him.
When Rionex reached Draco, he was on the beach, clutching his head. When she landed, she noticed that his eyes were changing from an eerie yellow to brown very quickly. He was saying different things to himself that Rionex could just barely make out. “Kill,” he said as his eyes turned yellow. Then, he shook his head and his eyes turned brown. “No... stop.”
Rionex touched a hand to his shoulder, asking in alarm, “Draco, are you alright?”
Suddenly, Draco’s eyes turned brown and he looked up with alarm. “Run!” he cried. “Run, Rionex! The Creature’s...” He trailed off as his eyes turned back to the eerie yellow color. “Kill,” he muttered.
“What?” asked Rionex, slowly backing away.
Draco looked up, his eyes glowing with an angry glare. He roared angrily and started to stalk towards Rionex. However, he stopped soon after and said, “No... can’t...” He trailed off.
All off a sudden, a circle of water started to boil. From it emerged a giant mutant Jetsam, and a ferocious looking blue Lupe. The Jetsam’s eyes glowed an eerie yellow. He grinned evilly and said, “Ah, I see Doomflame has decided that he’d had enough time trying to ‘negotiate’ with you.”
“Doomflame?” she asked, throwing a suspicious glance at Draco.
“Yes,” the Jetsam said. “And I am known as the Creature, but you may call me Master.”
“Why should I?” Rionex asked angrily.
The creature laughed and said, “Because, I have your parents.” Rionex gasped in surprise. At that, the Creature pulled out Sage from behind his back, completely frozen in stone. He saw the surprised look on Rionex’s face, and added, “Oh, yes, and I have your father, too, but he’s also trapped in stone.”
Rionex glared at the Creature angrily. “Let them go!” she cried.
The Creature sneered and replied, “Well, I might be able to make a compromise. If you give me the gold bands on your wrists, I’ll set your parents free.”
Rionex was confused on what to do. She wanted to set her parents free, but she now knew the bands were magical. She also knew that the Creature definitely wasn’t good. There has to be a catch, she told herself. In every story I’ve ever read, the villain always tries to stack things in his or her favor. But, I don’t want my parents to be trapped in stone forever. What should I do?
Just then, Rionex heard a quiet voice. “Don’t do it... Rionex,” it said. Rionex turned to look at the voice. It was Draco, who was clutching his head at the moment. “He’ll... use the bands... to take control. Don’t... give... in.” At that moment, Draco’s eyes swirled from brown back to an eerie yellow.
The Creature gave an angry hiss at Draco. “You,” he said, grabbing Draco in his claws, “are a treacherous snake! You work for me, and because you have helped the girl, you’ll be punished!” Draco didn’t respond, just blew steam from his nostrils.
Rionex grew angry. She decided now what she would do. “I won’t give you the bands!” she cried. “Maybe, you won’t free my parents from stone, but if I gave you the bands, all of Neopia will suffer! And, if I’m right, I’ll be able to use the bands to turn my parents back myself!”
The Creature growled in anger. “You just made a grave mistake,” he hissed. Then, he signaled to the Lupe beside in the water. “Darkstar, get her!” With that, the Lupe jumped in to attack her.
Rionex started to move the bands all different ways. However, nothing seemed to happen. “Come on, come on!” she cried, continuing to turn the bands. Still nothing happened. Darkstar, who had been quickly coming closer the whole time, jumped to attack. Rionex fell backward and held her hands up in defense. Suddenly, a golden light flashed, and when Rionex opened her eyes, Darkstar was lying on the ground. The Lupe got up and started to shake her head.
Not long after Darkstar got up, a monstrous claw swooped down and grabbed Rionex. “You,” the Creature said, bringing Rionex up to his face, “are an annoying little trouble maker! But, you won’t be causing trouble for much longer.”
“Master, wait,” came a gruff voice from below. Both Rionex and the Creature looked down at Darkstar. “Maybe,” the Lupe said, “we could hold her in our prison. Then, she could watch all of Neopia come under your control. Let her suffer, so she will be little more than a shell of her former self by the time it’s over.”
The Creature looked thoughtful. “Not a bad idea, Darkstar.” He glared angrily at Rionex, and then turned his head back to Darkstar. “Come on,” he said, signaling for her to follow him underwater.
Darkstar paused a moment before following the Creature. In that short moment, her eyes shone a completely different color; blue.
To be continued...