The Last Faerie
Xandra... just the very sound of her name shoots chills down my spine. When she studied with the faeries, I was there by her side. She changed a lot during those short few weeks of studying. It wasn’t too long before the faeries froze... well, every faerie except for me. Yeah, I bet that part didn’t make sense to you. Here, let me tell you my story.
It all started one beautiful spring day in Faerieland. I was dusting the artefacts on the shelves of the Hidden Tower when Fyora floated gracefully up the spiraling stairwell. She was followed by Xandra—the same speckled Xweetok that caused the fall of Faerieland. The Xweetok was excited and cheerful. The youth scurried to the shelves to scrutinize the artefacts that were up for sale to the lucky Neopians that could find the fortress. (She was curious and a pleasure to have around back then, I’ll tell you that.) My dainty light faerie body whipped around to bow at Her Majesty, Queen Fyora. “Good afternoon, Your Highness,” I greeted her with respect.
“Good afternoon to you too, Nikkou,” she greeted in response with a smile that brightened the whole room. “How is your work coming along?”
“Very well, thank you,” I answered. “Who is the Xweetok that you brought with you? Is she a new student?”
“Indeed,” she confirmed, “but not any new student; she’s your new student.”
My face lit up—literally! (I am a light faerie after all.) “Really? That’s fantastic! Thank you so much, Queen Fyora.”
“Now remember, Nikkou, she’s your responsibility. It is your duty to enrich her in the study of magic, as well as to make her a just and honest Neopian. She is a very talented youth, and I could only assign her to someone as talented and dedicated as yourself.”
“Why, Your Majesty—“
“Darling, I wasn’t finished. Your student will be staying with you in the Hidden Tower for the next few months. Please make her feel welcome, and please don’t encourage her to blow stuff up. We don’t want it to cause Faerieland to fall, now do we?”
The queen laughed, and I had joined her in doing so. Little did we know that Faerieland would indeed fall because of her.
“Don’t worry, Queen Fyora; I swear to you on the name of Neopia that I won’t let you down!”
“Thank you, Nikkou.” The Faerie Queen turned to Xandra, who was sneaking a nibble of the Everlasting Apple that was for sale. Every time she took a bite, the apple retrogressed back into its previous, unscathed state. “Xandra,” the Queen called. “Please do not touch the merchandise—that’s for the customer.”
The curious Xwee turned her head around. She had a bite of Everlasting Apple in her mouth. “Sorry, Queen Fyora,” she apologized with a full mouth. She set the apple back on its display table and swallowed the bits that were resting in her mouth as the fruit regenerated. Timidly, she walked over to the queen. “Again,” she apologized with an innocent facial expression, “I’m sorry for eating that.”
The Queen smiled. “It’s perfectly fine,” Her Highness explained. “At least the Everlasting Apple is, well, everlasting.”
Xandra turned to me. “Are you my instructor?” she asked.
“Why, yes I am,” I told her. “Pleasure to meet you.”
Fyora further introduced us to each other: “Xandra, this is Nikkou. She will be your mentor while you study with us for the next few months. And Nikkou, this is your student, Xandra. I see potential in the both of you, so work hard and study smart.”
The Faerie Queen floated away. “Good bye!” Xandra and I chimed simultaneously as we waved the queen goodbye.
The Xwee turned to me and smiled. “So, what are we going to do first?” she asked curiously.
I then thought to myself, What are we going to do first? After all, Her Highness just granted me this job without prior notice.
I looked around the room for a second. We were surrounded by rare, magical artefacts. Some were magical, and Xandra seemed very interested in them. “How about I introduce you to our wares?” I suggested.
Xandra's eyes lit up. “Yes please!”
After that, I took her to each artefact in the room and explained each object one by one. She found each one to be marvelous and exciting. She would ask me questions, one after the other. Everything was perfect...
...but it was when we reached that one artefact when things began to go wrong.
“What is this one?” she asked me as she picked up the object. It was round with a reflective lens in the center.
I took it from her and put it back in its place. “No, no. We don’t want to meddle with items such as this,” I informed her.
She cocked her head to the side and asked me, “Why, Nikkou?”
“Because,” I explained, “it can cause chaos when in the wrong hands.”
She looked even more confused. “How so?”
“This disk can enhance all magical powers tenfold. If in the wrong hands, it could cause an apocalypse due to the intensity of the enhanced powers of the user. Of course, they’d have to find the proper spell book to use it first. We have it hidden somewhere in Fyora’s castle where nobody could possibly find it.”
(Of course, I wouldn’t have told her what the artefact did and where the spell book was located if I knew what she would do with that knowledge in due time.)
Xandra scrutinized the malicious artefact. She seemed somewhat petrified just looking at it. “That’s amazing how something inanimate can be so malevolent,” she mused. “Why do you keep it up here in the Hidden Tower if it can do something of that magnitude?”
“Because,” I elaborated, “the Hidden Tower is hidden for a reason. It appears to those who are invited to walk through its gates. Also, this place is almost always under constant supervision. It would take a magical mastermind to fool the faerie on guard so one could steal the artefact.”
Silence followed my explanation.
“So,” I said, “shall I show you where you will be staying while you study with us?”
Before we knew it, Xandra and I began our work. Xandra was a very attentive listener, as well as an extremely bright pupil. (I probably learned as much from her as she was learning from me.) Back then, she was relaxed and carefree. She let her mind wander and explore the many realms of various concepts and ideas that, to me, were very intriguing. Queen Fyora would occasionally summon us to her opulent stronghold for tea and biscuits to monitor how Xandra’s studies were going. Fyora found her to be a joy. I did too, of course, but I had a sinking feeling that something was wrong. (No pun intended.)
It was about three weeks into Xandra’s training. I was asleep on my cloud, which was not too far from the Hidden Tower. Usually, I sleep cozily on my cushy plot of water vapor, but this night was an exception.
You see, unlike most faeries, I have a very unique and rare ability. It’s called Shiryoku, which is Shenkuuvian for “sight.” Only a select few faeries to have ever existed were granted this ability, and I am one of them. Shiryoku is an ability that allows faeries to foreshadow future events by seeing them in their dreams. Some consider this to be a gift; others a curse.
To me, I wasn’t sure what it was supposed to be. Sometimes my visions were beneficial; other times they messed everything up.
This time, I didn’t know what to think I was so flabbergasted.
I saw Xandra hiding behind the meeting place for the annual Faerie Festival. An evil grin adorned her speckled face—something I never expected to ever see come from the innocent Xwee. She cast a transformation spell on herself, and almost instantly she took the form of Hubrid Nox. Why she chose him, I didn’t know at first.
Her altered form briskly swept into the fray, holding the artefact as she unleashed a sinister cackle.
A blue Ixi dressed as a vagabond watched as the incognito fiend cast a spell. A flash of light emanated from the object.
Silence... dead silence.
And the faeries were turned to stone. Xandra fled the scene and reverted to her previous state after she was out of sight.
The vision faded to black. That’s when I woke up, gasping as if I needed air. The truth was, I really did need air after seeing that horrid vision.
It was still dark out, so I decided to try going back to sleep.
The next morning, I woke up, still wondering if the dream I had was to become a reality in the distant (or even the not-so-distant) future.
I tried to ignore the entire occurrence as I headed to the Hidden Tower to meet up with Xandra.
When I got to the Tower, I gracefully swept up the spiraling staircase to the dorm on the third floor that my student was residing in. I knocked on her door. No answer. However, the door was unlocked, so I opened it and floated in.
Xandra was looking out of the small, stone-surrounded window of her Hidden Tower dorm. She seemed to be contemplating something as the Weewoos and Angelpi floated around the veiled structure. “Xandra,” I asked the Xweetok, “are you ready to continue studying?”
The Speckled pet did not even bother to turn around and face me. She let out a distressed sigh. Then, completely ignoring what I had asked her, demanded, “Nikkou, what exactly do the faeries do?”
I raised an eyebrow. “Pardon?” I asked in confusion.
“I mean,” Xandra elaborated, “what do you do in terms of affairs with the Neopets? You faeries seem to have so much power, but how do you use it to help those who don’t have great power such as that?”
I spent a second or two to think of an answer, and this is what it was: “Xandra, we do so many things for the Neopets. The Soup Faerie makes food for the destitute; faeries such as Illusen and Taelia offer quests to Neopets in exchange for rare goods; we grant powers and wishes; we give Neopets jobs and quests; we do so much more. I can’t imagine why you’d ask me a question as simple to answer as that.”
“Then why do I feel like you do not do enough to support us?” she asked in support of her thesis. “I feel as if you all can do more with all of that. I believe that you could be a tad more involved with the affairs of us Neopians. Don’t you agree?”
“Uh...” I stuttered. I wasn’t sure how to answer that. She was trying to make it seem like a rhetorical answer—as if the only obvious answer was ‘yes.’ However, I completely disagreed with Xandra.
“To be totally honest,” I confessed, “I don’t agree in the least.”
She stomped her foot so hard against the concrete floor that I could’ve sworn that I had felt a shockwave shake the structure. The angered sorceress turned around. “You fool!” she scolded me with displeasure. “I thought you were different! I thought that you would’ve sided with ME unlike the others. While every other faerie seems mindless and idle, I thought that you—with your superior intellect and impressive magical skills—would be on my side for this concept as always. Yet, you fail to see the faults in your own race! How absurd! How idiotic!”
She advanced towards me angrily, her stomps vibrating the Hidden Tower ever so much more and more with each step she took. I tried to advance to the door as an attempt to escape. However, Xandra was a step ahead of me. She shouted the word, “claudere,” and the door slammed shut.
She summoned spheres of great magical energy. They fiercely glowed in her dainty paws as she prepared to hurl them at me. In my defense, I quickly cried out another spell: “Aperire ianuas magicas!”
Once she had stored enough power, she attacked me with her energy spheres. The spheres grazed my skin as I teleported out of the dorm. Before I knew it, I was standing in front of Queen Fyora. Yes, I thought, the spell worked! I’m saved... but Faerieland’s in danger.
Fyora sashayed over to me. I was lying on the floor of her court room. Confused, the Faerie Queen asked me, “Nikkou, what are you doing here?”
I could explain things to her now, I thought. The spell brought me to the place that I needed to be in most, although any place other than Xandra’s dorm would have been just fine.
The Queen extended a hand out to me. I grabbed it, and she helped me up. “My goodness,” she gaped, “what happened?”
All of a sudden, I felt a sharp pain in my right arm. I looked at the spot, which was now burnt and red. I held it with the arm from the opposite hand. My eyes squinted in pain.
The Faerie Queen removed my left hand from the afflicted area. She analyzed the injury carefully. Her expression became increasingly shocked. “Oh my Maractite,” she worried. “This is by far the worst burn I have ever seen. Usually, spells cannot inflict damage as serious as this, but I can heal it regardless.”
She muttered a few words silently under her breath as she held my arm. Before I knew it, my arm was no longer in pain. Most of the redness had subsided, but the burn had left a scar on my arm. It was the length of a ruler, and it spiraled around my right elbow in a rather intricate way.
I smiled, but then I felt weak and passed out.
I woke up on a faux down bed in one of many bedrooms in Fyora’s castle. Usually, she reserved these rooms for special guests, but the Queen needed a place to put me that was vacant. She was glancing at me in my weakened state from overhead. When she saw my eyelids slowly open, she sighed with relief. “Thank goodness,” she said gratefully. “I couldn’t help but worry about one of my most talented faeries.”
I smiled, especially since that was the only really good thing that had happened all day. “Thank you, your majesty,” I replied.
She sat on the foot of the bed. “So,” she asked me, “what happened when you got the burn? Do you remember?”
I had almost forgotten about the burn until she had brought it back up. I looked at the perplexing scar on my arm and replied, “Xandra.”
“Excuse me?” Queen Fyora asked in bewilderment.
“Xandra. It was Xandra.”
“I-I don’t underst—“
“Sorry to interrupt you, your majesty, but I need to further elaborate this fact. It was Xandra who inflicted this scar on my arm. It was her. I can prove it, too! Here’s what happened. I went to her dorm to pick her up, and...”
I explained Her Majesty the entire story from beginning to end. She could not believe what she was hearing, especially since she believed that Xandra was such a sweet and innocent prodigy, but she had to; I was her mentor after all.
When I finished the story, she frowned. “I-I’m sorry, Nikkou, but I cannot believe that she would be so against our peaceful and order-bestowing ways. Feelings like that don’t just magically appear. There’s a reason behind them. I mean, she’s studying with us. We offered her to study here, and she agreed. That means that there are other factors at hand here. Otherworldly factors.
“However, I do see that behaviour such as that is completely and utterly unacceptable and deserves punishment. She will be expelled from the program immediately; her ability to see the Hidden Tower will be usurped; she will never be allowed to visit come within a specific proximity of this castle. I will get my guards right on it.”
“But what if Xandra tries to get her revenge on me while you file that demand?!” I shrieked.
The Queen put her hand on my shoulder. “Relax, Nikkou. I assure you that she will not be a bother to you anymore. However, I cannot do anything about her ideologies of how us faeries deal with the affairs of Neopians. We have nothing that proves that Xandra’s intentions are true.”
I then remembered my vision. “Queen Fyora, I had a vision last night that foreshadowed a dangerous event to happen in the future.”
Her Highness was still in a state of disbelief, even after I explained the vision. “Nikkou,” she said, “you’ve been through a lot today. Why don’t you get some rest and—”
“NO!” I interjected. “That is what I saw!”
She nodded her head. “I don’t agree. I don’t even think you have the ability of Shiryoku. It’s all in your head. Now go to sleep.”
Before I could disagree any further, Queen Fyora darted out of the room. I decided to go back to sleep. If there was one thing that she was right about, it was that I needed to rest and rejuvenate. It was a long, short day. (Quite the contradiction, if I do say so myself.)
The day came when Xandra cast her spell. She possessed the artefact, which she stole before she was kicked out of the Hidden Tower. I saw her morphing into Nox’s form. I stepped aside from the Faerie Festival and quickly muttered a spell under my breath. I created a magic-resistant force field. I was protected from the spell, but every other faerie was not as fortunate.
Not even Queen Fyora was safe. Oh, if only she had believed me...
I secretly tried to keep tabs on Xandra, but I lost track of her trail after a while.
From that point onward, I wandered Neopia as the Last Faerie.