My Battle With Balthazar
We all know who Balthazar is. Many of us have seen him, and several of us have even faced him in the Battledome. He’s no pushover; that much is certain. But what happens if you stumble across him as he’s catching faeries? Would you try to stop him? And if you did, what would he do to you?
I found the answers to all those questions over a year ago, when I was still a young green Uni.
It was a hot summer morning in the Lost Desert. I was just starting to wake up when my owner, BG, came into the bedroom.
“Good morning, my little one,” he said to me.
I quickly looked up and smiled at him.
“Good morning, BG!” I sang out happily.
My owner sat down on the edge of the bed. I got to my hooves and walked over to him, then rubbed my head against his shoulder, taking care not to poke him with my horn as I did so. I loved him dearly, and showed it at every chance I got.
“Breakfast is ready,” BG remarked, standing up.
I hopped off the bed and followed him into the kitchen. He had made pancakes that morning. Pancakes were a treat, as he only made them a few times a month, if that. So I ate as many as I could.
“Did you have any plans for the day?” I asked BG as he began to clean up the dishes.
“Not at the moment,” he answered. “If you have any, though feel free to tell me.”
I shook my head.
“I don’t have any ideas right now,” I admitted. “But... I do want to go for a gallop along the street.”
I looked up at BG.
“May I?” I asked.
“Of course you can,” my owner responded. “You don’t have to ask my permission. Just be back by lunchtime.”
I wrapped my forelegs around him in a grateful hug before making my way out of the Neohome. As I headed out the door, I stopped for a moment to look at the front yard. BG and I were in the process of turning it into one massive garden, but we had a ways to go. I sniffed at one of the flowers, then bucked happily and started on my run.
There was almost no wind blowing, but at the speed I was running, my mane and tail were billowing out behind me. I was giddy with happiness, and periodically I would buck, skip, prance, or sidestep along. Then I accidently stumbled over a small stone, but since I was going so fast, I did a complete flip and landed on my back. I lay there for a minute, giggling like the little girl I was, before I got to my hooves and continued on.
It was so hard to believe that only a few months ago, I had been locked up in the Pound, scared that I would never be free again.
I reached the end of the street and stopped to examine one of the street signs. I knew the local neighborhoods outside Sakhmet quite well, so I turned and headed down the next street over. But not long after I started running again, I heard someone call out for help.
I skidded to a stop, throwing up a cloud of sand as I did so. Had I really heard what I thought I had? It had sounded like a female’s voice calling for help.
Then I heard it again. I turned and followed the voice, and soon found a light faerie immobilized under a large heavy net. Clearly, this was Balthazar’s work.
The faerie stared at me as I ran up to her.
“Please!” she pleaded. “You have to get me out of here before he comes back!”
“I will,” I replied.
I began to untangle the net, but it was a lot harder than it looked. And the fact that the faerie had been thrashing around didn’t help at all.
“He’ll be here soon!” the faerie wailed in desperation.
“I’m trying! I’m trying!” I retorted.
Then I saw the faerie’s face change from scared to downright terrified. Before I had a chance to react, something slammed into my back, sending me flying. I quickly got back up and turned around to see Balthazar standing there.
“This isn’t any of your business, filly,” he snarled at me. “Go away, and I’ll spare you.”
I glared back at him.
“You can’t tell me what to do, you pest!” I bellowed, pawing at the ground.
Balthazar seemed surprised that someone was actually standing up to him.
“I would destroy you now, but you’re merely misguided, and no match for me,” he said coldly. “Leave now, and I’ll let you live.”
I was furious now, and the look of terror on the trapped light faerie’s face sealed the deal. Before Balthazar could react, I lunged at him, driving my horn into his chest before yanking it back and backing off. The Lupe groaned as my attack connected, then clutched at his chest in shock.
“You just sealed your fate, filly!” he roared.
He threw back his head and began to howl, but before he could, I charged again and lashed out with my hind legs, kicking him square in the gut.
Balthazar staggered back a step, then glared at me with pure hatred in his eyes. We charged each other, and he tried to slash me with his claws. But I rolled under his attack and kicked him right in the face. From the sound of it, I had broken a few of his teeth, but this only made him madder than ever.
We charged, attacked, blocked, and dodged for several minutes. I was doing my best, but Balthazar was older, stronger, and more experienced than I was. Still, I was faster, and I could fly, so I had a chance. Indeed, I soon found out that if I flew right over him and struck with all four hooves, I could knock him face-first into the sand. But I figured that eventually he would find a way to evade that attack.
Sure enough, the next time I tried it, Balthazar backhanded me with a front paw, knocking me out of the sky. I hit the ground hard, and as I staggered to my hooves again, Balthazar slashed at me. I managed to dodge his claws, but he promptly came around with his other paw and pinned me to the ground.
I realized instantly that I was as good as finished. As I thrashed around, trying to get out of his grip, he sneered at me.
“You fought well, filly,” he laughed evilly. “But now you are finished.”
As he raised one paw to slash me, a column of light slammed into his chest. Balthazar went sailing backwards, landing hard on his back. I looked around, trying to find out where that attack had come from.
It had come from the light faerie I had been trying to free! Somehow, she had freed herself, and now she was standing over me, arms raised to attack Balthazar again. But she wasn’t alone. BG stood beside her, a sword in each hand.
That was the first time I had seen my owner in full form and ready to battle. Apparently, he had come to find me, and freed the light faerie while I kept Balthazar distracted.
The Lupe slowly got to his paws, but when he saw that the battle had suddenly become a three-on-one, he knew he was beaten. He smiled sickly at us, then picked up his back and limped away, muttering as he went. The light faerie blasted him in the rear as he retreated, making him yelp and run.
I got to my hooves, feeling very tired, yet quite triumphant. I had fought Balthazar and survived! BG picked me up.
“You’re a very brave little Uni,” the light faerie said gently, stroking my nose.
Her hand began to glow with light magic.
“Let me reward you for your valor,” she went on.
She traced a circle on my chest, and when I looked down at where her finger had been, I saw a glowing golden ring-shaped mark there.
“You are blessed as a chosen of the light faeries,” the faerie went on, smiling. “Now you can use the energy of the sun to fire solar rays from your horn.”
BG set me down, and I bowed to the faerie. She bowed right back before spreading her wings.
“You don’t need to thank me,” she said kindly. “You saved my life, so I owe you everything. I’ll be watching over you.”
The light faerie flew silently away. BG and I watched her go before we looked at each other.
“I’m so proud of you,” my owner said, picking me up again.
“It wasn’t easy, but I tried,” I murmured, feeling sleepy.
BG cuddled me and began to walk.
“Let’s go home,” he said. “You deserve a bath and a long nap.”
The light faerie’s blessing has remained with me to this day. Even though I have been painted twice since then, the light ring is still visible on my chest. And ever since I faced Balthazar, I have been training hard to become stronger. Next time I cross paths with that Lupe, I have a feeling I will emerge victorious. So far, he hasn’t been seen anywhere near this region of the Lost Desert, which makes all the younger pets (and their Petpets) feel a bit safer. If he comes back, I will show him no mercy, as I know that he will do the same to me.
But I’m not afraid.
I will defeat him yet.
You can be sure of it.