The Prophecy of Four: Part One
In the midst of the light will rise the Betrayer
From the midst of the dark to fight comes the Warrior
By stands the Healer, to cure wounds of flesh and soul
In the battle, the Believer, who brings all to light.
Shadows moved within the darkness itself, which
was lit only by the glow of a young Fire Faerie. The faerie was scared, it was
easy to tell. Her wings drooped somewhat, and her hair was turning black toward
The Fire Faerie jerked instinctively toward the
voice. "My lady."
"Have you what I seek?" the voice from the darkness
"Yes, my lady," Tanelle replied tremulously.
"I have brought it with me."
Reaching behind her, Tanelle pulled out a Yellow
Buzz Toy. "But why, my lady, would you need a toy for your great work? Surely-"
"You dare try to comprehend my magic?" The shadowed
faerie's voice turned from silky to icy in the blink of an eye.
Tanelle looked down. "No, my lady."
"Good." The shadows once again moved, then lay
still. "It will be ready soon. So you must be as well. You should be immune
to the potion; all the same, do not drink it. It would be a shame to lose you.
I would have to take years to train another the way I've trained you."
Tanelle cast her eyes down. "My lady, I await
The shadows moved, receding into the blackness.
The Fire Faerie waited there for what could have been years, or only seconds,
before her mistress returned.
Pressing a glowing bottle into the faerie's hand,
the instructions continued. "Slip this into the drinks of the faeries you wish
to know the hearts of. You will see . . ."
Tanelle was told no more than that. She only
knew that she was testing faerie's hearts for evilness, for admission into a
grand scheme. Part of her mind screamed against what she was bound to do, but
the rest overpowered it. Potion in hand, the faerie headed for her home.
The Floud turned and looked at the air faerie
"Yes, you!" the faerie yelled. Slowly, the Floud
began to make its way across the room - in the opposite direction.
"That's it," Talusai muttered to herself. Aloud,
she called after the retreating Petpet: "Arisen, you won't get any tomatoes
today if you don't help me!"
She got the Floud's attention. It zoomed over
to the air faerie so fast she could barely see it. "All right. Arisen, I need
you to take one of these each to Kanal'te, Sanalre, and Tanelle. Got it?"
The Floud bobbed its body up and down happily,
then headed out the window with the letters.
Talusai headed downstairs and grabbed a few tomatoes.
She left them on her desk for when Arisen got back. In the meantime, she was
going . . . Shopping! (But only for food) she reminded herself reluctantly,
and flew out the door.
Kanal'te, or Kal as she was sometimes called,
was reading on her bed when she was disturbed by a bump on the window. Ignoring
it, she kept on reading until repeated bumps forced her to look up.
The Earth Faerie was greeted by a Floud with
a letter. "Ah, you're from Talusai, aren't you?" asked Kal.
The Floud bobbed itself up and down in a close
approximation of a nod.
Kal sighed. Why did her friend have to use her
own petpet instead of one of the typical, lightning-fast, White Weewoos that
delivered the NeoMail? She had continued even after she had lost her last petpet,
a Magaral, to an interestingly lazy pterodactyl, Turmaculus: The Flying Version.
Kanal'te scanned the note briefly. "Oh. A party.
" She scribbled, 'I'll be there' on the back, then gave it back to the Floud.
Examining the Petpet more closely, she found that it had two other letters.
One was to Tanelle and the other to Sanalre, a water faerie. Kal smiled as she
looked over the last one. If she knew her friends, Sanalre was already with
Talusai, shopping, and Tanelle would be shortly be readying extra snacks.
"Lovely." She sighed again, then carried the
vacant-eyed Floud over to the window and pushed it out. Kal watched it head
for Tanelle's house, before jumping into her closet.
Tanelle received the Floud's note with interest.
Glancing at the potion that sat like a threat out on the table, she smiled inwardly.
It was the perfect chance to judge the ones she had called her friends.
Tanelle moved to the kitchen, and prepared some
drinks. She fretted while she did so, about this and that, until the fact that
had been eluding her popped into her head. Once uncorked, the potion would stay
at full potency for only 15 minutes. She would have to add it at Talusai's house.
Tucking the potion into a coat pocket, Tanelle
grabbed the tray and zoomed for the door. She was halted there, by the fraction
of her other self that still existed.
Her evil part succeeded for the moment, though.
Her indecision was past, and Tanelle flew out the door to her 'friend's' home.
Tanelle and Kanal'te arrived about the same time
as Talusai and Sanalre, who were back from shopping.
"Hey guys!" Sanalre, her normal, happy, hyper
self, was bubbling over with enthusiasm. "What's up?"
Tanelle replied for herself and the earth faerie.
"Party. According to a rather vacant Floud with a fondness for tomatoes."
"Too true!" squealed Sanalre, and zoomed into
the living room.
Kanal'te and a rather exasperated Talusai exchanged
looks with a sigh. Tanelle, on the other hand, looked only thoughtful.
"I've got it!" Sanalre exclaimed, an hour and
five cups of coffee later. "Let's play Gormball!"
"Eh, why not," remarked Tanelle, as she withdrew
the ball from her bag and tossed it to Sanalre. "Let's go!" she shouted, and
the faeries bounced up from where they had been sitting to join her in a circle.
Unsurprisingly, Tanelle was out first. While
the others continued their playing, she decided to serve her drinks. "I'll be
right back, guys!" she said, knowing that the match wouldn't last for more than
Once in the kitchen, the faerie took out the
four cups. Tanelle also took the potion out of her pocket and poured a quarter
of it in each cup. As she glanced back at the cups, she realized her mistake.
All four glasses, she told herself. Stupid, stupid,
stupid. At least your lady said you should be fine - so -
A splash and a shriek from the other room told
her that Sanalre was out and Kal would be shortly. Kal always lost her concentration
when people screamed.
Tanelle's guess was not far gone. As she emerged
into the room with her tray, Talusai hurled the ball one last time and soaked
"Juice anyone?" called Tanelle from the door.
"Sure!" Sanalre flew over. "I want this one!
No - that one! No - neither of them - how about that one!"
"Just pick one," Tanelle said wearily.
"All right," said the hyperactive faerie, choosing
the one she hadn't pointed at yet.
Kanal'te and Talusai both reached hands over
for glasses. Tanelle picked up her own and set the tray on the table behind
Somehow, the faeries had decided to wait before
drinking, and Talusai decided to make a toast.
"To Gormball!" she pronounced, holding her cup
high in the air.
The other faeries echoed her and trailed off
into polite laughter which turned to nothing as all the faeries raised their
glasses to their lips.
As Tanelle drained her glass, she felt a chill
course through her. I hope I am truly immune to it, she thought.
Tanelle watched as her friends fell to the ground,
gracefully or less than gracefully. She watched them as, through the effects
of the potion, they changed . . .
Sanalre was first. Her body swirled and reformed
into the general shape of a Draik. Then colors emerged, and shapes, until it
became apparent that the water faerie was now a Maraquan Draik.
Kanal'te changed next. As she changed into a
Gelert, her color began to solidify and darken. Shadow. Tanelle clicked her
tongue as she observed both of these. Both useless.
Finally, Talusai. Tanelle watched as the air
faerie's body shaped itself into that of an Ixi. Wings grew, and color became
an overall lavender. Faerie Ixi.
Tanelle stared. Not one of them had the treacherous
heart needed. A waste of a perfectly good potion.
This was all she thought as the room went black.
When she woke, Tanelle observed her friends sleeping.
She headed up the stairs to the bathroom, observing a need. On the way she fretted.
"What if I broke a nail in that fall?" she wondered aloud. At least her vanity
was intact. She turned on the light and rounded the corner into the bathroom
- and stopped, gazing in horror at what stared back at her.
To be continued...