Even Royals Make Mistakes
"So we're finally here again," sighed Walda the Baby Kacheek. "The Lost Desert. This place is hotter than the Lava Ghoul!" She drooped her head in displeasure.
"Let's have a nice vacation this time," answered her sister, Chessella. "No more running away in search of chocolate."
"I guess it's true that chocolate is hard to find in this wasteland," Walda frowned.
"No more CHOCOLATE!" snapped Maldice. "Anyway, today we are going to visit Coltzan's Shrine."
"What's that?" asked Walda.
"It's a monument dedicated to the late King Coltzan III. I've heard that his spirit inhabits the shrine. It should be fun to visit."
"BOOOOORRRRRRIIIIIIINNNNNGGGG!" whined Walda obnoxiously.
"No, it's not," replied Maldice. "It's a valuable historical site. It'll be interesting to learn about."
"Whatever. I wish I had some chocolate—"
"NO!" snapped Maldice.
Walda reluctantly followed her sisters as they traveled toward the shrine. Her thoughts focused on chocolate, she wasn't watching where she was going, so she tripped over a large mound. "Ouch!" she cried, scraping her knee on a stone.
"Are you okay?" asked Ella.
"Yup." Walda sighed. "This is boring! I wanna go home!"
"Behave your-" Maldice stopped mid-sentence. "Wait a minute. What is that furry thing lying in the sand?"
Walda's fall had caused the sand to shift, uncovering an unconscious Lupe who was lying on the ground. The scrapes on his body indicated that he had seen better days. "Oh, my!" exclaimed Ella.
Maldice stooped down to examine the Lupe. "He's breathing," she pointed out. "I hope he's okay. Let's take him back to the vacation house." She and Ella carried him as the sisters walked in the opposite direction.
"I think he's waking up," pointed out Ella.
Sure enough, the Lupe opened his eyes. Dazed, he sat up and stared at the sisters with a bewildered look on his face. "Who in Neopia are you ladies?" He coughed.
"We found you unconscious on the sand," replied Ella. "We were concerned, so we took you back to our vacation house. Are you alright?"
"I have a headache and some scrapes, but other than that, I'm no worse."
"I think that we might have some medicine for headaches. Let me see if I can find it." She walked into the other room and rummaged through her suitcase. "Aha!" She returned with some Black Cherry Tea and gave it to the Lupe. "It is said that this tea has a very calming effect on headaches," she told him.
"Thank you. I can surely use this."
"You're welcome. Anyway, do you remember how you were knocked out?"
"That blasted Coltzan did it," grumbled the Lupe, coughing some more.
"Whaaaaat?" cried Maldice. "I'm not going back THERE, then!"
"Really?" asked Ella. "I've only heard good things about him. Why did he attack you?"
"See this mask?" The Lupe gestured to the cough mask on his face. "I recently came down with a nasty came of Kikoughela. I'm wearing a mask because I don't want to infect anyone else." He sighed. "I went to the shrine to ask Coltzan for healing magic, but he saw this mask and thought I was a robber. Before I could explain, he whipped up a sandstorm and knocked me unconscious."
Ella grimaced. "What a rotten misunderstanding. We shouldn't let such an awful situation brew. I think that we should go back to the shrine and rectify the situation."
"No way," frowned the Lupe. "It's too dangerous to try to reason with someone who jumps to conclusions that quickly, especially when they have such divine power."
"If he turns out to be a problem again, I'll knock him all the way to Mystery Island," grinned Walda, holding up her fists.
"Yeah, right," snickered the Lupe. "You're just a baby."
"No, really! I'm strong!" To prove her point, she brandished her Turned Tooth, and then the room was filled with smoke. A loud noise pierced everyone's eardrums. When the haze cleared, everyone saw a large, smoking hole in the wall, surrounded by cracked bricks.
"WALDA!" screamed Maldice. "You BRAT! Now you're going to have to pay for that!"
"But I wanted to prove—"
"I don't care! Go to your room!"
Walda began to saunter toward the stairs, but then the Lupe began to speak. "She might not be stronger than Coltzan," he began, "but she can protect me, at least. Let's go talk to Coltzan."
"Alright," answered Maldice. She turned to Walda. "Get yourself down here!" she called.
Walda slid down the banister. "Ugh," grumbled Maldice. "Don't climb on the furniture! I don't want you to break anything else! You are SO grounded when we get back home!"
The group arrived at the shrine and stood before the majestic monolith. "Coltzan, your Majesty?" called Ella. "Are you here?"
The king's spirit appeared. "Hi, how may I help—" Then he noticed the Lupe. "What do YOU want?" scowled Coltzan.
Trembling, the Lupe stepped forward. "Your Majesty—"
"Go away, you good-for-nothing robber, or I'll—"
Concluding that Coltzan wouldn't listen to the Lupe, Ella stepped forward. "Your Majesty," she began, "my friend is sick. He's wearing a mask so he won't infect anyone. He says that he stopped by earlier to ask for some healing magic, but you mistook him for a robber and sent him packing. Could you please help him?" The Lupe started coughing.
King Coltzan stared at the Lupe for the minute, then sighed. "Well, now I feel like a complete fool," he told the group, bearing a look of unhappiness on his face. "I apologize. Here, I will heal you right now." A warm ray of light enveloped the Lupe, which felt pleasant on his fur.
When the light disappeared, the Lupe looked and felt revitalized. "Wow!" exclaimed the Lupe. "I feel much better! That Mortog in my throat is totally gone. Those yucky scrapes are gone, too! Thank you, your Majesty!"
"It's the least I should do," answered Coltzan. "Here's a powerful Battledome item for your trouble." He gave the Lupe a King's Lens.
"Wow!" exclaimed the Lupe. "It's so pretty—"
"Who cares what it looks like?" replied Walda. "It's a useful Battledome item! It would have been nice to have when I battled the Space Faerie..."
"I imagine that you got pummeled," Coltzan told her. "The Space Faerie is a very powerful deity."
"Whatever," the Lupe interrupted in a skeptical tone. He turned to Coltzan. "Thank you for the present, your Majesty!" exclaimed the Lupe.
"You're—" Coltzan was cut off. "Your Majesty," grinned Walda, "do you have any chocolate?"
"NO!" scowled Maldice. "You're not going to embarrass us!"
"Sorry, there isn't any chocolate in this desert that I know of," answered Coltzan. He turned to the Lupe. "Enjoy your present."
"Thank you. I will!"
As the group left, Ella turned to the Lupe. "See?" she smiled. "It's much better to solve problems, if possible, than to let them brew."
"I suppose you're right." Grinning to himself, the Lupe felt grateful for the help he had received from both the sisters and Coltzan. He was very glad that he had corrected the problem. It became apparent to him that nobody was perfect, not even royals. Gazing dreamily at the King's Lens, the Lupe concluded that Coltzan wasn't such a bad guy after all.