Revenge and Resistance: Part Six
Previously: Garoo, one of Sloth’s top mercenaries, deserted his master and went to work for the Resistance, who accepted him only after he let them capture Skyfire, another of Sloth’s mercenaries who had been following Garoo. However, they still do not trust Garoo and feed him false information. Sloth is outraged by the news that Skyfire has been captured, and commands Sprax, an Alien Aisha, to attack Faerieland with the orders to kill Fyora.
Sprax and his men had reached the base of the tower easily enough, but getting to the top was proving difficult. Fyora and her guards had blasted parts of the wall to block the staircase and getting ten mutant Grundos over the barriers was near impossible.
“Stay here,” he ordered. “It’ll take too long to get you all over these, and I move faster alone anyway. I’ll be back soon enough.”
The Grundos nodded obediently and took posts guarding the foot of the staircase. Sprax leaped over the stones and dashed up the stairs.
“What’s going on up there?” Sprax asked of the Grundo in the cruiser.
“They haven’t left yet; I’ve made sure of that. But I think they’re preparing to take down the ship—you must hurry! If they take me down, you have no chance of stopping them.”
He arrived at the ornate purple door within a minute and blasted it open. Instantly, he was attacked by six or seven beams of light, but his blasters managed to take care of the guards. Soon, only Fyora was left standing in front of him, glaring.
“You have been sent to kill me, I take it?” she said.
Sprax sneered maliciously. “You were foolish to try and stop us.”
“It slowed you down. Had it not been for my faeries, you would be surrounded by many more, and it would have been harder to convince you to stop what you are about to do—or rather what you wish you could do.”
Sprax raised his blasters. “You seem awfully calm about this.”
“Although it is a dream come true to be the one Doctor Sloth ordered to kill the Faerie Queen,” she said, “I know you will not be able to do it.”
Sprax hesitated. “Quiet,” he said. “I can do it just fine.”
“Then go ahead,” she said, daring him. Her eyes were emotionless, cold. It was disconcerting to the Alien Aisha.
He lowered his blasters after a moment of frozen time. “I—I cannot do it. But I can imprison you,” he said angrily.
“Then do so,” she said, smiling, unsettling Sprax even more. “Might I suggest the cells in dungeon five? They’ve got the most rot.”
The Queen stepped forward and Sprax held up the blasters again, though it meant nothing. “Follow me,” Fyora said, still smiling.
The Queen was placed in the most cramped and dirtiest cell of the lot. The ten Grundos were placed on a round-the-clock watch, and there were always at least four blasters pointed at her. Sprax only hoped the Grundos wouldn’t hesitate to shoot Fyora should she try to escape.
As for himself, he was the most ashamed he had ever been. On the trip back to the Space Station, he went over the events in his head. Why had he faltered when he needed to be the strongest? Curse that faerie. Things had worked out exactly as she wanted. He could only hope Sloth never found out.
Gormos was worried. He was holding a hostage, something he had always despised. And worse yet, he was trying to work out a way to use Skyfire to their advantage. What have I become? he asked himself as he went to her makeshift cell. I am someone I never wanted to be.
After moving the barricade, he entered it to find Skyfire was awake. Her eyes narrowed when she saw the Kougra.
“Gormos,” she said tartly. “I take it this is your revenge on me for ratting you out?”
Gormos was stone-faced. “This isn’t about that.”
“Really? Then what is it about?” she said with a sneer. “Your need to do good? Fight evil? Save the world? I remind you that you were the one to fire at me first,” she spat.
The Kougra was silent. There really was nothing to say. Despite his feelings to the contrary, he just wanted to savor the moment.
Meanwhile, Garoo stood outside the cell door, listening to the conversation taking place between the two sworn enemies. He smiled as he heard Ylana mocking Gormos. It’d be exactly what he’d do if he were the one that was captured.
He was startled by a sound behind him. Turning around, he found a Robot Lupe and a Robot Gelert watching him stiffly and realized the sound that startled him was the whirring of their motors.
“What?” he whispered, rather annoyed by the interruption. He turned back to eavesdrop some more, but the robots drowned out the conversation inside.
“We have been informed that the former plan is no longer in effect,” the Lupe whirred. “Gormos has come to us and told us that the real plan is an attack on the Space Station as soon as our troops are large enough. We are supposed to spread the word to everyone.”
Garoo was silent. Could this be true? And why hadn’t Gormos told him himself? He shooed away the robots and tried to figure out what was going on. If those robots spoke the truth, then Gormos and the rest weren’t, and that angered Garoo more than anything else. If they didn’t trust him, then he would have to give them more reason to.
“Gormos!” the small Grundo shouted frantically as he entered the mines. “Gormos!”
The Kougra poked his head out of the meeting area. “We’re in here, Gorix.” He noticed the Grundo was in a state of emergency. “Something wrong?” he frowned.
“Yes, yes!” he said. “I’ve just received word from Neopia—Fyora’s been killed!”
It took a moment for the words to sink on, but when they did, shock seized the Kougra’s face. “Come in, come in,” he said hurriedly.
The meeting area was full; there were more recruits than ever and nearly all of them were now crammed in the usually cavernous office.
“Tell us everything,” Gormos ordered.
“Well, I was in the café,” Gorix began, voice squeaking as he tried to speak loud enough for everyone to hear, “and you know how the bartender is an agent? As soon as I walked in, he told me that he’d heard from a new arrival that Fyora’s palace had been ambushed and she was a casualty!” The Grundo was shaking uncontrollably. “We’ve got to stop him; we just have to.”
The members of the Resistance were silent. Many had bowed their heads; a few had started to cry. All were solemn. All but one, at least. Garoo sat in the back, hidden behind two robot Chombies, simply stared ahead, thinking. Still annoyed with the distrust of his “colleagues,” he considered his options. He was brought out of his thoughts by Gormos standing up suddenly.
The Kougra’s eyes were hollow as he faced the group. Although he had never met the Queen, he was deeply wronged by this turn of events. “We must retaliate. This is unacceptable,” he said strongly. “We must plan his downfall. We cannot wait any longer.”
Nods of agreement went through the crowd. They began talking with each other and soon the room was filled with voices. Many voiced their opinions, fighting each other to be heard, which led further into disorganization.
“QUIET!” a shrill voice shrieked. All looked around for the source to find it came from the small Cybunny Cylara. “Let’s hear what Gormos has to say,” she said much more warmly now. “He’s the brains, after all.”
Gormos nodded his thanks to the girl and looked out across the group again. “My idea is this—we plan a double attack. We lure the brunt of his forces to Kreludor where we will be waiting.”
At this the voices swelled again, this time in disagreement. Gormos raised his hands and waited for them to quiet down. “I know it will be a hard fight,” he countered, “but it’s the only way to take him down, which a select few of us will attempt. Once the majority of the forces are here, a small ship can take off for the Space Station and attack whoever’s left there. Once the head is removed, the body cannot act.”
The audience was quiet. His reasoning was sound; they couldn’t argue with that. But it was impossible for them to hold off all those clones, let alone the hordes of Grundos, robots, and whatever else Sloth had up his sleeve. It was a suicide mission.
“Therefore, we must prepare ourselves right away. Cylara, Gorix—you know the organization plans we discussed earlier? Lead the rest of them in fulfilling those plans. I’ll be with you later.” The two nodded and slowly led the crowd out of the office.
Meanwhile, the Kougra had spotted Garoo, who had hung around while the rest of the Resistance left the room. He beckoned the Blumaroo forward.
“Your job is the most important, I believe,” he said. “I need you to lure Sloth’s forces here. You are the only one who can enter the Space Station without being killed. Think you can manage to convince Sloth you’re working for him again?”
Garoo was silent as he thought it over. Would he be able to do that? Would his former master accept him? After a moment of thinking, he nodded slowly. “I can do it.”
“Good. We need you to leave as soon as possible,” Gormos replied. “The sooner this goes down, the sooner everyone will be safe.”
Garoo nodded and left the room. Safe indeed, he thought to himself.
To be continued...