Retribution: Part Five
Part Five: Discovery
Wraith lifted red eyes to scan across the interior of Meridell castle, a sense of melancholy settling over him as he scanned the stone walls with their red and blue banners.
"So, this is our attacker?"
Wraith's head jerked towards the far end of the throne room at the gruff voice. Before him stood the fat blue Skeith that was known as king; Skarl. "Yes, Your Majesty," the Kougra knight answered, bowing slightly. Wraith ducked his head in an imitation of the bow, but decided not to lift his head afterwards.
He could feel the king's scrutiny on him. "Hm... you look familiar. Have we met before?" Wraith shook his head slowly, silently asking for him to just give his punishment and get it over with. "Do you have anything to say for yourself?" Another shake of the head, causing Skarl to give a disgruntled noise. "Well, if that's the case, then why don't we just send you to the dungeons?"
The Kougra knight beside him took his arm and steered him away from the king. "Why did you attack?" the Kougra whispered as he led the unresisting Eyrie away.
Wraith sighed, shoulders sinking slightly. "Well... I don't know. Technically, I was paid to." He snorted. "Sort of, in any case."
"You were paid to?" the Kougra gasped in shock. "One person? But why?"
Red eyes slid to the side. "How should I know?"
They descended down stone steps into the dungeon, the only light that of flickering torches. He waited patiently while the Kougra unlocked the door of a cell, opening it and gesturing. "Here you go."
Wraith laughed slightly. "You really didn't think I'd try to run away?"
"There was no 'thinking' involved; I knew you wouldn't."
The Eyrie blinked in surprise at the comment. He looked away, slowly stating, "You might want to consider thinking about things, then."
He could hear the frown in the knight's reply. "But you haven't tried to escape yet."
"No," Wraith agreed, "and that's not what I meant." The Kougra still appeared confused as he walked past him and into the cell. Her heard the sound of the door screech shut behind him, followed by the turning of keys and a click. Footsteps sounded for a few moments before Wraith called out, "Wait." When the footsteps stopped, he continued, "The neopet who hired me was a Darigan soldier; a Techo. His name was Martin, if I'm remembering right. He wants to start a war with Meridell for some reason."
"What?" the Kougra yelped.
Wraith snorted. "Don't worry, it won't work," he growled. "He's not good enough at that type of thing. But you might want to keep an eye out for him, just in case."
"Um, Ok. Thanks..." The was silence for several moments before the footsteps of the Kougra continued, leaving Wraith alone in the cell.
The Eyrie sighed, looking up. "No," he whispered, "it's not Martin you need to watch out for." He knew the real menace; he could sense their presence hovering around the Techo like a cloud. There was one thing that bothered him, though; they were called the Three for a reason. So where was the third?
"And... you should be good." Silver's sister, Sarah, smiled, a bundle of used bandages in her hands.
Cam touched his chest, examining the area. "Thanks," he commented.
"Here's a shirt," Sarah added, tossing him one. "Yours was kind of destroyed, so I borrowed one of Silver's."
"Hey!" the green Zafara protested, jerking from where he sat in a chair not far off.
"He needed a shirt," Sarah reminded him.
"But you could have asked first!"
Cam looked at them with a dry expression, slowly standing. "I've appreciated your hospitality for the last couple of days," he told them, "but I need to get going."
"You don't have to be so stiff," Silver replied.
"Going to look for that Eyrie who was with you?" Sarah queried.
"Yes." He turned to the door, adding as an afterthought, "And I think I know exactly where he went."
He stifled a sigh at the question. "Most likely."
"Then you should take Silver with you."
Both boys protested simultaneously. "What? Come on, sis!"
"That's not necessary."
"It's a good idea," Sarah told them. "You never know when bandits will attack, and you," here she turned to Cam, "don't have a weapon."
The Bori stiffened, feeling slightly insulted at the idea that he couldn't defend himself. "I assure you," he growled, "that I can take care of myself."
"But you're the one who came in here after being hurt by a Drackonack." Fair point, but he'd never admit it aloud. "Just swallow your pride," she sighed.
He remained stiff for a few moments, his mind turning it over, before his shoulders slumped with resignation. "If you're insistent," he sighed, "then he can come with me." It was better than getting attacked by bandits, he supposed.
He heard an echoing sigh from nearby. "Well, if he agrees, then I won't argue," Silver commented. "Just let me get my sword."
Sarah nodded. "Thank you, and good luck."
"So, this 'Wraith' guy took you in?"
One of Cam's ears flicked in faint annoyance; the Zafara had been trying to maintain a conversation as they walked, and had somehow managed to drag out some information on his past. "Yes," he agreed.
Silver made a thoughtful noise, commenting, "Sounds like things aren't going to well for you guys up there."
Cam sighed. "We survive," he replied. In a whisper, he added, "There are some who wish Kass was still in charge, though."
"What?" Silver yelped, obviously overhearing the quiet words. "Why would anyone want him in charge again? Don't they know how many problems he caused?"
At this, Cam couldn't help but produce a sad smile. "My mentor would agree with you wholeheartedly."
Silver snorted with amusement. "Guess this proves not all Darigan Eyries are alike, huh?"
"That was in question?"
The two continued on like this, Silver asking questions and Cam answering them, if sometimes reluctantly, until they reached the outskirts of the town of Meridell. Both hesitated at the entrance, looking in. "You know," Cam said slowly, "you're free to go any time."
"I know," Silver responded, "but I'd kind of like to meet this 'boss' of yours."
"I was afraid you'd say that," the blue Bori sighed.
"Why? Don't like my company?"
Cam snorted, not denying the response but instead replying, "I'll have to listen to you two complain to each other."
He started off into the town, smirking as he heard the protesting cry of "Hey!" rise up behind him.
Silver had caught up with him before long, and the two began scanning the area. "See any sign of him?" Silver asked.
The only sign of how troubled Cam was were his eyes. "No," he murmured, his heart falling as it dawned on him that his mentor had been gone a week. Wraith was patient, sure, but normally would've waited for him; the fact that he hadn't could only mean trouble.
"Hey, we could ask around," Silver suggested. "After all, Darigan Eyries would stand out a lot in a place like Meridell."
"True," Cam agreed, trying to ignore his sense of dread as he watched the green Zafara run up to the nearest person. He followed more slowly, not hearing the words being said but seeing Silver's surprised reaction to them. The neopet walked away, leaving the green Zafara standing there with his ears lowered, one hand half raised.
When Cam came up to him, he turned to the Bori with a fake smile plastered on his face. "Well, apparently he was here a few days ago, but left. Guess that's bad luck, huh?"
"Don't lie to me," Cam whispered. His ears flattened, and he felt his heart constrict uncomfortably. "I know what happened." He'd always wondered how he'd react to the loss of someone he cared about, since he didn't really remember his parents. He'd expected to feel sad, like he wanted to scream. Instead he just felt... cold. Cold and numb. Boss is gone. Boss is gone.
Silver deflated. "Listen, I'm sorry," he said, rubbing a hand through his silver bangs. "I didn't think we'd find out he was thrown in the dungeon."
It took a few moments for the words to register. "Dungeon?" Cam whispered, ears perking up slightly.
Silver looked at him in surprise. "Um, yeah. What were you thinking happened?"
Cam didn't bother to answer, instead turning towards the castle and striding towards it. "Hey! Where are you going?" Silver called.
"To get Boss out," he responded, amber eyes locked on the castle. Boss isn't gone. Wraith isn't gone.
He came to an abrupt halt when Silver grabbed his arm. "Are you crazy?" he hissed. "You'll just get thrown in there, to."
"Let go of my arm," he growled, his fingers slowly tightening into a fist.
"Sorry," Silver replied, "but I only take orders from my sister."
Cam's tail flashed out, the appendage whipping the Zafara across the chest at the same moment that he jerked his arm free. He heard the gasp of breath as his companion hit the ground, his amber eyes blazing as he strode purposefully towards the castle.
He stumbled as a sudden weight landed on his back. "Get off me," he growled, trying to reach up and pry the subject off his back.
"No," Silver hissed. "You need a plan first!"
Cam froze suddenly. "... A plan?"
"Yeah. You know, an idea of what to do? Sheesh, you'd think you'd never done anything like this before."
Cam was frozen in place as Silver slowly slid off his back. "You won't stop me... from trying to get him out?"
Silver smirked at him. "Stop you? Who ever said anything about that?" His smirk broadened into a grin. "I plan on helping you."
To be continued...