The Sorceress's Rising
Also by princesspesa98
A golden wave washes over the rebuilding Faerieland. Although even the Queen herself isn’t awake, someone in her courtyard is. She usually wakes up with the sun, because it always gets in her eyes. Not that she can do much about it, being a statue and all.
Statues of different faeries align the walls, admired by all. But almost everyone stays away from the statue of a Xwee in the middle. Its detail is amazing, beyond compare, but everyone knows better.
Xandra doesn’t like to be disturbed.
Xandra watches the charred remains of what she used to call home. She didn’t really know what happened. She only knows that apparently the pretty orange lights were a bad thing, and the black stuff in the air stung her eyes. A Moehog approached her with a grim expression. There were murmurs from all of the pets clad in red and yellow.
“Shall we take her to the pound, sir?” one says. Xandra’s eyes widen. She’s heard stories of the pound before!
“I don’t want to go there!” she snaps, as intimidating as a six year old could be. “Where are my parents?” she demands. The Defenders of Neopia exchange anxious glances.
“Little girl, it’s not that bad...” one says. Burning hatred billowed in the Xandra’s eyes...
A shockwave seems to run through the ground, knocking everyone off their feet. The awed heroes stand up, casting frightened looks at the still standing Xweetok.
“...Forget the Pound. We’re taking her to Fyora.”
After the Defenders had retold their story, Fyora was becoming very interested in this certain pet. Xandra did seem like she was enjoying herself wandering around the Hidden Tower.
“Hello, young pet. What’s your name?” Xandra looked up from studying a swirling crystal ball.
“My name is Alexandra, but I like being called Xandra.” She made a face. “Alex is a boy’s name.” Fyora chuckled.
“Very well, Xandra. From hearing your story, I can only guess that you have some magical abilities. Now, if we could only teach you how to control them...” Judge Hog nodded at this.
“She has no other place to go.”
Fyora bit her lip. “Very well then. She can stay in the castle until she is old enough to attend Faerie Academy.” The Defenders of Neopia thanked the faerie queen for her time and left. Then Fyora turned to face the young speckled Xweetok. “I hope you’ll think of this place as your home,” she said. Xandra’s young purple eyes shone.
“It is already home,” she said, matter-of-factly.
“Xandra, will you wake up?!”
The Xweetok bolted up, glasses askew. “What?” A white blonde air faerie grinned.
“Oh, nothing; I just wanted to tell you that the library faerie would not be pleased with your behaviour.” Xandra gazed horror-struck at the text book on transformations, which now had a puddle of drool on it.
“How long have I slept for? I’m going to be late for class! Where’s my bag?” Xandra asked frantically, diving under her bed to search.
“Its right here.” The faerie smirked waving it around. She cast Xandra an odd look. “But if you didn’t know, today is Sunday.” A loud thump was heard from under the bed followed with Xandra yelping, “Ow!”
Xandra came out from under the bed, a sheepish smile plastered on her face. “Sorry, Laya.” Holding back her laughter, Laya heaved up her friend.
“Seriously, Xand, you have too much work. Why don’t you drop something?” Xandra gave her a look like she was crazy.
“Drop something? I need everything, though!” she said defensively.
“For what?” Laya asked, exasperated. Xandra’s gaze turned to the window over looking the Faerie City. When she turned back to face Laya, her eyes seemed to shine.
“I’ll need it someday...” she said confidently.
“Okay, girls. You are all going to become fully trained faeries at the end of this year, which always leads to the question of what you are going to do. I know, this is a very diff-”
The whole class cheered, taking the news very solemnly. The teacher looked at them all with venom, but let them celebrate until barking, “QUIET!”
“Now then,” she said once the din had subsided. “It is not an easy decision, I assur-”
“But what’s the point? If I ever need anything, all I have to do is ask a neopet,” a faerie interrupted, twirling a lock of honey gold hair with her finger. “They’d do anything if I told them; probably even jump off a cliff,” she added with a smirk. A laugh of ran through the class. Fighting back and angry retort, Xandra forced herself to look ahead.
As the teacher told off the class and babbled on about different job choices, Xandra stopped listening. She shot a glance at the faerie, who was still chatting haughtily with her friends.
“I mean, it’s like they can’t think for themselves. Do you even know how many visitors Queen Fyora gets every day? Like, massive amounts of Neopets!”
Xandra stuffed her books in her bag and got up with a sickening screech of her chair.
“Miss Alexandra?” the teacher said blankly. Before any other words were uttered, Xandra was out the door.
Xandra knew everyone would be gossiping later, but that was a price she was willing to pay. As she entered her dorm, Laya looked up from her homework.
“What’s up?” she asked. Xandra couldn’t face her. She was one of them. But then again she was her only friend...
“Laya? What do you think about neopets?” she asked, her voice a bit raspy. Laya seemed to have to think about it.
“I never really met a lot,” she said truthfully. “My mom usually doesn’t let go me go down to Neopia; apparently she doesn’t like me mixing with unsavoury sorts.” She made a face of disgust. “But I know you, so I guess that is enough. And the servants that work here...”
Xandra stood up, looking ready to boil over.
“Is that so?” Xandra asked, deadly calm. Laya cocked her head, hazel eyes scanning her face.
“What’s the matter, Xand?” she asked gently. Xandra looked down, refusing to meet her gaze.
“They treat us like dirt,” she whispered. Xandra kicked the gleaming hardwood bitterly. “I can’t believe I didn’t realize before! Why are no other pets studying here except me?”
“You’re here because you have magic powers,” Laya said blankly. “That doesn’t mean anything.”
Xandra’s laugh was like cold water. “It means more than you think. It means... they don’t care.”
“Who are they?” Laya asked exasperated.
Xandra’s face was livid. “The faeries! No faerie ever goes down to Neopia unless they need something! We’re being used!” She took a shaky breath and added quietly, “I’m being used.”
Laya blinked a couple times. “That’s not true.” Xandra’s fists clenched.
“You’re blind, Laya,” she said softly. “Faeries could do so much good for Neopia. They could solve problems with a wave of their hands. They could...” Xandra’s violet eyes widened. “They could put out a burning house...”
Laya's eyes widened as well at her words. “Xandra, if it really means that much to you, go see Fyora. She’ll tell you the truth.”
Xandra glanced at Laya’s soft hazel eyes, worry and disappointment seeping through them. She turned her back on her, looking over the Faerie City; her home ever since she was a child.
She turned around to face her old friend, her eyes shining with tears. “I will. Thank you, Laya,” Xandra said, barely audible. She turned and walked out the door, before the Air Faerie’s mouth could even open to say goodbye.
Xandra now sees a figure coming up the stone path. She can make out a pair of wings, so she braces herself for Fyora, but can’t make out a sceptre.
An air faerie flutters carefully through Fyora’s courtyard, her flowing white blond hair and pale blue dress trailing behind her. She comes up to a statue of a neopet with a face of fury etched upon it. Her gaze turns sad. Xandra looks on unmoving, but with shock coursing through her body. She can recognize those eyes!
“Xandra, I know you can’t hear me, but I’d just like to tell you... the faeries aren’t blind anymore. You made them see. And I’m sure you would have liked Faerieland’s new spot,” Laya says, almost imagining for a second that her old friend had blinked. She turns and walks away into the sun, glancing back at the stone Xweetok, heaviness lifting from her body.
And if she could, Xandra would’ve smiled.