Mordegan: Poogle Rights Advocate - Part Three
Bersicker gulped, quaking in his chair. Ezanna smiled smugly
to himself. Fyora, I'm cool, he thought, self consciously smoothing back
his mane. The Poogle made a funny noise, sounding a bit like a Mootix being stepped
on. Ezanna examined his claws.
"I'm waiting, Bersicker," he said.
The Poogle sighed, his shoulders sagging in defeat.
"I'm not a Poogle racer," he admitted resignedly. "I'm an actor; I was employed
by the bookie to pretend to be a racer to get that Faerie forsaken Lupe off
Ezanna clicked his tongue thoughtfully. "That's
what I thought. Okay, you can go." The Krawk suddenly changed his mind. "No,
wait. First-- do you know where the real racers are being held?"
The Poogle nodded. "Yeah. I spoke to a few of
them, so I could get in the zone, you know? That's method acting, or something.
Anyway, the Scorchio keeps them in a little room below the racetrack. You can
get there through a trapdoor in the concession stand," he said.
Ezanna smiled. "Perfect. You can go now. But
don't tell the bookie that you messed up-- let him believe that you made Mordegan
think that you were a real racer," the Krawk instructed. Bersicker got up to
"Will do. It's better for me that way, anyway.
I can collect my payment." The Poogle gathered up his things and scurried out
the door, leaving Mordegan and Ezanna in the room. The Krawk turned to his brother,
a triumphant grin on his reptilian face.
"What did you think, Morty? Pretty good, eh?"
he asked, strolling back to his chair. The Lupe nodded fervently.
"That steely gaze was awesome, Ez. You would've
made Spectre proud." Mordegan grinned widely.
"And tomorrow, I'll go under the track and talk
to the real Poogle racers."
Number Four stretched, his aching bones cracking
ominously. He groaned and rubbed his back with a sore paw.
"Fyora, that was a tough race," he muttered.
"It wouldn't have been so bad if it hadn't been for that snot nosed Mynci...
Darn thing threw a whole pineapple at me!"
Number Five nodded sympathetically. "Don't worry,
Four. It'll be alright. Remember when that funny red Poogle came down and talked
Four gnawed his lower lip. "Yeah... He said that
he was going to go talk to some Lupe who wanted to call and end to Poogle racing."
He curled up on the ground. "Wonder how that went..."
Five anxiously prodded Four's still form. "It's
kind of weird, isn't it? Why'd they send up some random Poogle to be our representative?
Why couldn't one of us do it?" Five furrowed his brow. "It sounded a bit suspicious
Four yawned and gazed sleepily at Five. "Probably
just because we aren't articulate enough or something. It's probably better
to have a hired rep," he answered.
Five snorted, settling down in his resting area.
"I still say it's odd," he mumbled to himself before closing his eyes and drifting
off to sleep.
"Are you sure you don't want to come, Ez?" Mordegan
asked as he finished off his dinner. The Krawk nodded.
"I'm sure." He tapped his fork idly against his
plate, staring down at his half-eaten omelette. "I'm not really the type who
takes action. That's usually Shelleylou's forte. I just do the talking."
Mordegan chewed reflectively. "Well you really
helped me out. I probably would've cracked under all the pressure," the Lupe
said admiringly. Ezanna shrugged.
"That's what years of playing Cheat will do for
you, Morty." The Krawk glanced at the large wall clock. "Are you going to leave
soon?" he asked. The Lupe nodded.
"Yeah. As soon as I finish my milk." Mordegan
quickly drained the rest of his glass and wiped his mouth with a large green
paw. "I guess I'll go now..." he began uncertainly. Ezanna smiled.
"You'll be alright, Morty. Just don't do anything
stupid." The Krawk got up and patted his brother on the back. "Good luck, Mordegan.
Be careful, alright?"
Mordegan nodded as he started off towards the
front door. "Don't worry," he called over his shoulder. "I'll be okay." And
with that, he slipped out the door and into the fading twilight.
Mordegan crept silently under the cover of darkness
along the abandoned Poogle racetrack, keeping his eyes open for any sign of
movement. The Lupe paused, making sure that no one was following or watching
him. When he felt secure in his position, he began to move again, slinking towards
the vacant concession stand.
He reached the darkened booth and quickly tried
the door. Drat! It was locked. The Lupe frowned, he would have to go in through
the window. Luckily, the window was open, shedding moonlight in on the dimly
lit room. Mordegan padded softly over to the window and leapt gracefully through.
Unfortunately, Mordegan was rather big for a
Lupe, and had gotten himself lodged halfway through the window. He squirmed
frantically, trying in vain to free himself from the window's clutches. Finally,
he sucked in his gut and shot the rest of the way through, landing in a heap
of green fur on the floor of the concession stand.
The Lupe stood, dusting himself off and glancing
around the booth's interior. There wasn't much, just some shelves full of popcorn,
Neocola, and almost gummy rats. Mordegan winced when he saw the last item on
that list. He had never cared for the strangely squirmy Halloween treats. But
the Lupe wasn't looking for food; he was searching for the elusive trap door
that would lead him to the captured Poogle racers.
He put his nose to the ground and sniffed, working
his way around the floor. Finally, he caught a whiff of a smell that he had
gotten quite used to on race day. Poogle! He straightened up and grinned. Sure
enough, there was the trap door.
Mordegan grabbed the handle and pulled, revealing
a shadowy pathway that led down to the Poogle holding area. The Lupe took a
tentative step down the pathway, half expecting to hear alarm bells and whistles.
When none came, Mordegan continued down the path, eagerly anticipating the sights
that awaited him at the bottom.
Four was having the strangest dream. He dreamt
that he was running along the track, as he did every day, but when he came to
the first hurdle, he found that a grinning green Lupe had replaced it. "Don't
jump!" the Lupe called. "You won't be able to stop!" Then some dancing tacos
came and did the funky Pedackle. Suddenly, the Poogle heard a large crash. That
was when Four woke up.
"What the Juppie?" he muttered, rousing himself
and scanning the room to see what had made the noise. His eyes came to rest
on a large green Lupe who was lying in a crumpled heap at the bottom of the
pathway that led to the surface.
Four gasped. It was the same Lupe from the dream!
He looked around warily, vaguely wondering where the dancing tacos were. The
Lupe then got up and shook himself off, spraying dirt all over the room. Upon
noticing Four, the Lupe's face split into a wide grin. He went trotting over
to the petrified Poogle, extending a large, furry paw.
"Hello, friend!" the Lupe began. "I'm Mordegan
V. Battlesunn, and I'm here to free you from the tyrannical bonds of Poogle
racing! What's your name, little guy?"
Four pulled the Lupe down by his ears so that
their eyes were level. "Shh!" he hissed. "Not so loud! You want to wake everybody
up?" The Poogle grunted. "My name's Number Four, by the way."
"Oh!" Mordegan said, whispering. "Sorry, Mr.
Four, I wasn't thinking. I'm just so excited to be here!"
Four harrumphed, releasing his hold on the excitable
Lupe. "Good for you. But for your information, we don't need your help. We just
sent a representative up to go speak to some Lupe on our behalf." A glassy look
appeared on the Poogle's weathered face. "And what a noble Pet that Lupe must
be! One of Jeran's image, I'm sure. No doubt he is just as steadfast, strong,
proud, valiant, courageous--"
"Oh, why thank you!" Mordegan interrupted happily.
"I'm quite flattered, really!"
Four's jaw dropped in shock. "What? You're the
Lupe? YOU'RE our savior?" He groaned. "Does the Faerie Queen enjoy torturing
us with these narrow victories?"
Mordegan grinned. "Yup, that's me! I'm your savior!"
The Lupe frowned slightly. "But the other guy you mentioned, the Poogle, he
wasn't so nice. He wasn't sent up to be your representative, he was just there
to pretend to be one of you to try and persuade me to not continue trying to
Four grimaced. "I don't believe it! Betrayed
by one of our own kind! How could one Poogle do that to another?" He sighed,
his eyes welling up with tears. Mordegan patted his back.
"Hey, it's okay. Incidentally, I know how you
feel. I've been shunned by my species, too." Mordegan gave a small whimper.
"I got kicked out of the Neopian Lupe League."
Four glanced up at him. "Why was that?" he asked.
Mordegan blushed, wringing his bushy green tail.
"Oh, well, I kind of, uh... Accidentally set
fire to the statue of the Neoquest Lupe in the main hall," he said, snorting
with contempt. "Although it was partly their fault. I TOLD them that papier-mâché
was a lousy building material."
Four couldn't help smiling. "Well, I guess that
makes us two of a kind..." He looked at the large green Lupe, who was grinning
with his tongue lolling out and a trail of drool dripping from his mouth. "...In
a way," the Poogle finished. "In any case, I suppose even a little help is better
than none." He grinned at Mordegan. "You stay there and lay out your basic plan.
I'll wake and assemble the others and then you can give them your presentation."
With that, the little Poogle trundled off to go and rouse his comrades.
Mordegan gulped nervously. Uh Oh, he thought.
I guess I should've gotten a presentation set up. Or at least a plan...
The Lupe sighed and furrowed his brow. This was going to be tougher than he
To be continued...