The Golden Globes of Light: Part Ten
By now I was certain that the other members of the Circle of Twelve were truly behind all of this, and I was furious. Fortunately, the library was close to the heart of Kal Panning, so the immediate battle was not taking place where we had transported to. We scrambled to avoid the next fireball, and Lilly shouted, “Follow me!”
All of us had transformed, and we must have been a terror to behold, because everyone ran away screaming when they saw us. Lilly was making a beeline for Faelinn’s meeting hall, and we almost had to battle our way inside. (The guards thought that we were part of the attackers.) Thankfully, Faelinn came to greet us herself. We rushed to a room that was still intact to hold the meeting.
“They have betrayed us!” she shouted. “I knew that they would. They were becoming too powerful. We can not withstand this siege for very long; the six strongest wizards on the mainland are against us!”
“Has Ky returned?” I interrupted. Faelinn gave me a look of surprise. “She has been inspired for the past six months now, and had to act on her surge of power before it overtook her.”
“Alas! She has not arrived, or if she has, she has not come to see me.” Faelinn scowled. “You look as if you just fought the entire army that is at my doorstep. What have you been doing?”
“We were at the Jungle Ruins. The other Circle members slipped off while we went to confront Rollay and retrieve some artifacts,” Lilly muttered.
“What?! That was foolish of you,” Faelinn snarled. “Not to mention pointless,” she added.
“Not exactly. We managed to get one of the artifacts he had with him, and it is something Ky will be very pleased to have,” Lilly said quietly.
Despite the crashes around us as the attacking mages and other spell casters blanketed the sky with fireballs, it seemed as if the entire hall had fallen silent as Lilly held up a glowing dagger. I cried out as an image flashed before me; an image of the six of us traveling with a draik and a mynci holding the very same dagger. “That is exactly what she was looking for!” I squawked. “This is the item that will help us remember! Maybe Ky can get us home!”
Faelinn gave a cry of desperation. “Are you serious?!” she howled. “You can’t just leave us! We need your help!”
Alex gave the Aisha a stern look. “We aren’t from this time, ma’am. We don’t belong here. We will stay and help you as long as we can, but I don’t know how long that will be.” She turned to Lilly. “Does Ky have the ability to teleport?”
“Who knows?” I snorted, interrupting whatever reply Lilly had in mind. “When she is inspired, that Shoyru can do almost anything.”
“Shriek has a point. By the time Ky finishes her project, she will have learned of the incident in the Jungle Ruins. We have to trust her now. Faelinn is right; we can’t just leave,” Kassiel said grimly, clacking his beak in irritation.
We all turned to Faelinn. She sighed. “You had better meet with the magelings. We need a strategy if we are going to get through this in one piece.”
The Battle of Kal Panning was a terrible ordeal, even though we never reached the point of hand to hand combat. Ky’s absence took a heavy toll on the city; while we had some ability to teach and plan, Ky was sorely missed. Without her talent for strategy and offensive moves, our counterattacks and defensive strikes were only just keeping the opponent from storming the city. Our plans remained defensive, and our patience ran thin as we tried to teach spell casters as weak as the enchanter’s level some vital faerie spells. Even though we were terribly outnumbered and undersupplied, we managed to keep the fight going for weeks and weeks on end. I was beginning to get the feeling that Ky had been either captured, or worse, and that we were headed down the same road. We had been fighting for nearly two months when Ky suddenly reappeared at the front gates. There is nothing that can describe the chaos she brought with her, but I shall try my best.
Ky had undergone what I later found out to be a Transformation of Wrath. Such transformations are very rare, and the last one recorded was experienced by a faerie warrior. Anything that undergoes a Transformation of Wrath becomes as powerful as the raw emotions within them. Such a transformation is only triggered by extreme, uncontrollable anger within a highly powerful spell caster. Due to the channeling of emotions into power, the subject will not actually experience any emotions. However, the emotions they would be feeling became evident in their actions. Ky’s actions reflected an anger so strong and a hatred so deep that I no only recognized that is was her doing by a saying she had made up; “Sand, sea, snow and sky- it is best to beware of Ky.”
Ky brought with her several calamities of nature. First, it started raining so hard that the streets became covered with several inches of water. This quenched the fireballs that were being cast back and forth, but it also severely limited visibility. Then, while it was still raining, a blizzard appeared out of nowhere and raged around us. By then, we had realized that Ky was behind this, and had retreated into the libraries. Even inside one of the few buildings left mostly intact, the rage of nature still reached us. After a while, a terrible wind began to run through the city. It hurled objects about, and flung the ice, snow, and rain in our faces. By then, all sounds of war had vanished, replaced by the screams of nature and noises of pets scrambling for cover. What happened next was completely impossible, but that didn’t stop my sister; in a place without sand and in the middle of a flooding rain, howling wind, and fierce blizzard, Ky introduced a sandstorm that was twice the intensity that we had seen in the Desert of Roo.
At this point, we started down for the secret chamber. We couldn’t teleport there because of the dampening field around the room, but we did fly as fast as the space around us would allow. I was nearly scared out of my wits when Ky suddenly appeared behind me. In her transformation, she looked like a monster out of an ancient tale. I made a mental note never to make her as angry as she was that day. Without a word, we continued our flight deeper into the earth and toward the only safe haven left in Neopia. The sounds of ambush followed close behind us, but Ky routinely caused collapses in the tunnels to slow them down. By the time we reached the chamber, I felt like I had been flying for months on end.
Ky cast a seal on the stairs and strode toward the small room where we had held our previous meeting. We followed her, as silent as stone. When we reached the room, she locked the door and turned to the table in the middle of the room. “The artifact. Where is it?”
Lilly wordlessly took out the glowing dagger and placed it on the table.
Ky nodded in satisfaction. “You chose well. This is the Dagger of Eternal Light.” Ky turned to a nearby bookshelf that had not been there the last time we met and placed her hand against it. To my great surprise, it glowed a gentle blue and began to change. After a few seconds, the bookcase had completely vanished, and Ky was left holding a staff.
I gasped. It was the Staff of Ni-tas; it had to be! An image of a malnourished Korbat wielding the staff while attempting to avoid a blow from a bloodthirsty Eyrie flashed in my mind, and I clutched my head in pain.
However, my reaction to the Staff of Ni-tas was nothing compared to my reaction when Ky reached into her robe and pulled out the project she had been working on for nearly many months. It was a golden globe that appeared to be made of nothing but light.
Memories started pouring back, and I shuddered in pain at how painful they were. The others seemed to be having the same reaction. Ky placed the globe atop the staff and took the dagger in her hand. She began speaking in a tongue that was used by the Kayannin. I can’t spell what she said, but I shall give a rough translation. (It rhymed originally, but it does not rhyme in the translation.)
“Return to us/ what was lost. /Return us to/ the time where we are needed. /Let this place/ be sealed until our return. /Do not allow our enemies/ to enter this place. /Bring retribution on the traitors, /and do not let this city fall.”
With that, she shoved the dagger into her beloved project, and it seemed to explode. Light poured throughout the room, and I was thrown to the floor. The area around me seemed to warp and whirl, but I couldn’t see anything through the blinding glow of Ky’s golden globe. Then, there was a burst of energy, and I lost consciousness.
The next thing I remember was yawning so hard I thought I would split into a thousand pieces. It felt like I had been sleeping for years. I slowly sat up and sneezed as my movements disrupted a thick layer of dust. The small room we had been in was no more; the explosion had destroyed the walls that separated it from the main chamber. “Ky! Kassiel! Ashiel! Alex! Lilly! Where are you guys?!” I yelled.
There was a rustling sound as five figures stirred in the dust. They were all as sleepy as I was. Ky let out a tremendous sigh. “That was exhausting.”
“Well, what should we do now?” I muttered as I slowly stood up, leaning against a pile of rubble for support.
“Well, the spell obviously didn’t work,” Ky mumbled as she dusted herself off. “We should go see if the city is still standing.”
We took our time getting our bearings and shaking off the feelings of sleepiness, but we were ready in less than fifteen minutes. Since the way through the tunnels was blocked, we had to take the route through the Techo Caves. We spent most of the journey in silence and dread at what might have happened to Kal Panning while we were unconscious. It took us several days to get through the caves, and when we finally stumbled out into the sunlight, I could hardly recognize the landscape.
The land had obviously undergone a tremendous transformation. It was hardly recognizable from the Great Plains I had known. Almost all of the tundra had simply vanished, and the forests had swallowed up the once vast plains. Lilly looked over at Ashiel. “Can you find Kal Panning if it is destroyed?” she asked meekly.
Ashiel nodded. “Yes, but I don’t think it was destroyed.” I became very curious at this comment, but didn’t say anything. “I think it would be best if we walked there. We don’t really want to announce our arrival.”
“But it could take us a month if we don’t fly.” I protested. “If the city survived, then we have nothing to worry about. If it fell, I don’t think it will make much of a difference if we fly or walk, and I’d rather fly.” After a brief argument, my logic won out and we set off into the skies.
The forest was strangely quiet and void of life. Even flying, it took us several days to reach sight of the city. (I was baffled as to how it would take days to go between the caves above the land, but only hours through the tunnels.) Kal Panning was in sad shape, but it was still standing. The vast army of the other members of the Circle of Twelve was nowhere to be seen, so we took a day off from travel and rested from the ordeal. We resumed the trek the following morning, and arrived in Kal Panning the next night.
The city looked as if it had been transformed by magic several times. There was no life anywhere to be seen, and I felt terrible. “We failed,” I whispered.
To be continued...