The Legend of Premium Bat: Part Two
Also by jair_lorce
Descending the staircase carefully, Battius walked through what seemed like miles of passageway. Finally, he began to see a light at the far end. He put out his torch, able to see well enough due to the light ahead, and continued onward. The passageway opened up into a large room. Sitting in a comfortable chair holding a baby was a Kacheek girl. She didn't see him, and he watched as she rocked and crooned soothingly to the child in her arms. Of all the things Battius expected to see, this was not one of them. As his gaze swept around, he noticed hundreds, if not thousands of boxes and carry-sacks. The sacks were lumpy with their contents, arranged haphazardly throughout the room.
Clearing his throat loudly to alert her of his presence, he raised a hand peaceably when she jumped to her feet, clutching the infant close to her protectively.
"Good evening, Miss," he greeted her politely. "I'm Battius Battington. I've come here seeking information about the leader of a guild of ruffians, but you seem to be in unusual circumstances yourself. Might I offer you my assistance?"
It took some time for Battius to convince the girl that he meant neither her nor the child she protected any harm. It was a short time before she was telling him how she had come to be in this hidden place, and with a baby.
"I live here on Mystery Island," she told him. "I was unable to sleep one night and decided to go for a walk to tire myself. I love walking along the beach under the moon. It's soothing. While I was walking, a group of masked men landed on the beach and took me prisoner. They brought me here and told me if I tried to leave they would burn the whole island to the ground. They had this baby with them and told me to care for it as if my life depended on it, because it did. I've searched for weeks for a way out, but there is only one entrance, and the door won't open from the inside!"
"Do you know where the child came from?" Battius asked her, smiling encouragingly.
"No, but I think it's a baby faerie," she stated firmly. "Just look at this."
She uncovered the baby gently and as the blankets fell away, shimmering blue wings appeared. The baby had blue hair and red eyes. Battius was so deeply shocked that he couldn't say a word. Pieces of evidence fit together in his mind, and he finally understood what was happening. He knew what he had to do next.
"We have to leave this place right now," Battius told the girl.
"I can't leave," she told him, fear in her eyes. "They will burn the Island. I tried to leave once before, and they knew right away!"
"That's right," growled a rough deep voice from the passageway entrance. "Once in here, no one leaves without the permission of The Bruce."
A large Krawk, dressed in filthy rags and with a cruel smile full of sharp teeth stepped forward into the room. He laughed at them.
"You'll be right sorry you messed in this business, little Bat. Nosy little Korbats need their noses batted, yes, they do," the Krawk sneered.
"We will be leaving now," Battius told him calmly. "You will not hold us here."
"Let's see you just try that, little bat," the Krawk challenged.
Seeing that words would have no effect, Battius took flight directly to a thin coiled rope on top of one of the boxes. He grabbed it and darted toward the Krawk. The Korbat flew with such speed and precision that the Krawk didn't have time to move a step before one loop was already in place around his feet, tripping him up and causing him to fall to the ground. The girl toppled a stack of boxes over onto the fallen Krawk, then, holding the baby close, she fled up the passageway, Battius at her heels.
Reaching the door, they saw that it had been left propped open with a thin wooden doorstop, no doubt by the menacing bandit they just left downstairs. Battius lifted the piece of wood as they went through the doorway, letting it close behind them. There was a loud thud against the door behind them and snarled words as the Krawk realized he was himself trapped. Battius and the girl looked at one another and grinned. They had done it. They were free.
Relaxing a little, he reached over and patted her hand.
"You were very brave back there," he told her.
"You were brave too!" She smiled. "You wrapped that rope around his feet so quickly!"
"My name is Battius. Might I know your name?" he asked her politely.
"I'm Breanna," she told him.
"Breanna, I know you must want very much to go home, but I need your help for a little while longer. Would you be willing to accompany me on a journey to Faerieland and care for the baby until we get there?" he asked her.
"You saved me from that awful place," she said. "I would like nothing more than to help you get the baby home where she belongs."
They walked quickly up the beach and back to the Village. Breanna stopped and checked in with her family, letting them know she was all right. They were so happy to see her safe and thanked Battius over and over for helping free her. They agreed to allow her to assist him, in hopes that another family would soon be reunited with their daughter.
The next day, Battius once again arranged transport with Eyrie Enterprises, booking an early flight to Faerieland. Arriving in the Faerie City, Battius wrote a quick mail at the Neopian Post Office- Faerieland Branch. He sent it up to the Castle to be delivered to Queen Fyora herself. He and Breanna then checked themselves into the Mystic Cloud Motel and waited.
It wasn't long before there was a soft rap at their door. Battius answered it and quickly stepped back to allow a hooded figure to slip into the room. The stranger pulled back her hood to reveal gorgeous purple hair and a beautiful, kindly face. Battius bowed courteously to the Queen of the Faeries.
"Your Majesty," he greeted her. "Forgive me for my abrupt communication, but this matter is critical to Neopia."
"No apology is needed, Battius Battington. I heard of your heroic actions in Premium. I only hope you have a solution to the problem of these ruffians who are causing chaos across the lands, even here in Faerieland," Fyora assured him.
With no further delay, he told her of the events he had witnessed, and the information he had gathered.
"Your Majesty, I was told by a member of the guild who attacked the shop in Premium that his leader called himself 'The Bruce,' and that he carried a large weapon at all times," Battius told her.
He went on to fill her in on the rest of the information the thief had told him. That he had been instructed not to worry about the Space Faerie retaliating against them for their crimes, that she had been 'taken care of,' and of the meeting that had taken place on Mystery Island. Then he told her of the events that had occurred there, and how he had found Breanna. Finally, he had Breanna show Queen Fyora the baby.
"I believe, Your Majesty, that this is the Space Faerie herself. I believe she has been hit with a blast from a ray gun that is known throughout Neopia to reduce the age of citizens to that of babies. She has been Boochied!" Battius concluded.
Queen Fyora stood in stunned silence. She took the baby into her arms and looked closely at her, her whirling thoughts almost visible on her beautiful face.
"Things are even more dire than I have ever imagined," she whispered. "When our city plunged from its home in the sky, it sent a message to the villains of Neopia. It showed them that we are not as invincible as everyone thought. If what you say is true, Boochi has taken it upon himself to prove to Neopia that he is not to be trifled with."
"He has to be stopped," Battius stated. "I have seen the effects that the disappearance of the Space Faerie has had on Premium. The citizens have lost hope. They have allowed themselves to be pushed around by a tiny pink scoundrel. If he is not stopped soon, his power will spread. The Neopia we know and love could be gone forever."
"Yes, he must be stopped," Fyora agreed. "But it will take a true hero to challenge him. The risk from his ray gun is very great. The power of the Faeries is already spread thin with the effort it is taking to rebuild our city. Unless the Space Faerie is restored to her true self, we are limited in what we can do to combat this guild of rapscallions."
"Is there a way to restore her?" Battius asked.
"Oh yes." Fyora nodded. "But the only way I know of would require her to be blasted with the ray gun again while she sits surrounded by the waters of the Healing Springs."
"So I need to bring Boochi, or at least his ray gun, back here. Then we can restore the Space Faerie?" Battius mused.
"Either will work." Fyora smiled, nodding her head. "If you are willing to attempt it I will tell you where Boochi has been hiding."
"We cannot stand by and let him get away with this," said Battius, determination rising in his voice. "Tell me where he can be found, and I will do my best to bring back the ray gun."
To be continued...