Run Away to Knighthood: Part Five
Tiberius paced around the little hideout, leering at his
captives. "So," he began, with a sneering tone, "Meridell has sent some rescuers
after all. But it looks like they could be the ones in need of help this time.
Soon, your little kingdom full of bustling citizens, rolling valleys and potatoes
will be mine, and mine alone…and not even the greatest knight of the land has
managed to stop me!"
"He'll stop you, all right!" yelled Angel from
where he was chained to the wall, beside the cage that held his family. "Just
you wait and see!"
The Darigan Moehog pranced over to the Zafara
and grinned, an evil, triumphant grin that showed all of his yellow teeth and
exposed his terrible breath. "And how exactly will Jeran, the pride of Meridell,
the greatest hero ever, defeat me now?" Tiberius pointed a hoof at the Lupe
and his sister, who were locked in a cage whose door was decorated with five
large locks. Angel shuddered, and glanced at his right. Alphonse and Roland
were chained beside him, as helpless and yet as defiant.
"We will succeed!" declared Alphonse the Kacheek
proudly. "Good always wins over evil, no matter what!"
"You can't keep us locked, chained, bound or
trapped, Tiberius!" added Roland. The Moehog walked towards them, still wearing
his sneer, and said, "On the contrary, I already have." Tiberius just watched
the Kyrii and Kacheek try to struggle out of their chains. He observed the young
Zafara knight try to pull his paws out of his bonds. He only sneered at Jeran,
who was trying to pull the locks off, and Lisha, who tried to blast their way
out with her wand.
But what he and his associates could not see
was a young Kacheek's paw groping around to get the ring of keys dropped on
the floor. Nor could they see the looks on the Acara, Aisha and girl's faces
as they saw Sweet finally grab his quarry and unlock their cage.
"You did it," whispered Kat. "Can you get everyone
else out of their traps?"
Sweet scratched his head. Some of Tiberius' minions
were lazing around eating huge slices of yeasty bread, reading an old issue
of the Neopian Times, or just watching the remaining prisoners struggle helplessly.
One of them, a Darigan Uni, snuck a glance at their direction. The striped Kacheek
immediately shut the door to look as if nothing had happened, and grinned sheepishly
at Tiberius' evil comrade, who just shrugged and yelled, "Hey, aren't we supposed
to be storming Skarl's castle right now, saying we've got his knight and his
bumbling team of would-be rescuers in our clutches?"
Tiberius looked up from where he was scribbling
notes on a huge, tattered map of Meridell Castle. "I guess you're right," he
said, rolling up the piece of paper and stuffing it into his pocket. "Troops,
let's all surprise that huge lump by showing him what we got! Now, where are
the keys? I want to flaunt my victory over Jeran and rub it in the king's face!"
Fluffy nudged Sweet, who was still holding the
keys. The Kacheek nodded, but instead of hurling them towards the evildoers
to look as if someone had just droopped them by accident, he hurled them towards
the knight and his frantic little sister. The Lupe grabbed them and hurried
through his work. Soon Jeran and Lisha were standing outside the cage, facing
the huge crowd of Darigan rebels.
The Darigan Moehog turned around to get the keys…and
was suddenly staring at Jeran and Lisha, both smiling the same triumphant smiles
Tiberius had given them earlier.
"How…how did you get out?" he mumbled, anger
and fright in his voice.
"Good always wins over evil, Tiberius," said
the Aisha defiantly. "We may be outnumbered, but what powers our weapons are
truth, courage and justice, not evil, hatred or even selfishness."
Two of Tiberius' henchmen looked at each other,
scratching their heads and looking bewildered. Then, in the blink of an eye,
Jeran hurled the keys towards Kat, who was out of her cage, along with her three
pets. While Glitter, Sweet and Fluffy distracted their captors, the girl ran
towards three chained rescuers to unlock their bonds. She stuck the keys through
the chains and Roland, Alphonse and Angel all dropped to the floor.
"Good luck," whispered Kat as she gave Angel
a wink. He smiled, then grabbed his sword from the floor and ran into the fray.
Jeran and Lisha were both trying to restrain
Tiberius, who was desperately attempting to hold them off and trap them again.
Alphonse, Roland, Sweet, Glitter and Fluffy were all fighting against Tiberius'
minions. Not one of them cried out in pain but continued the battle. Angel ran
in and kicked a Darigan Techo who nearly slashed his sister Fluffy. Lisha broke
away from the fight against Tiberius to blast with her wand a Skeith who tried
to strangle Glitter. Alphonse was engaged in a serious swordfight with a Darigan
Kougra and blocked every single one of the Kougra's attacks. Roland pushed Tiberius
aside when the latter nearly stabbed Jeran.
As for Kat, she was dashing towards the rope
ladder that led out of the hideout to tell King Skarl. She moved slowly and
quietly, so as not to alert any one of the Darigan rebels. Unfortunately, her
stealth was not enough, as…
"Look! The human is trying to escape!" yelled
the Darigan Techo who tried to impale the white Aisha moments ago. Sure enough,
the whole abhorrent army was headed towards Kat, and the rescue team was right
on their trail.
"We have to hurry!" said Jeran firmly, as he
led his troupe towards the side of evil, and started launching attacks, giving
Kat time to run towards the castle and get reinforcements. Unfortunately Tiberius
was not to be outdone.
"Keep attacking them, troops!" the Moehog shouted.
"I'll grab the girl and make sure she doesn't foil our plans!" His compatriots
stopped, and continued fighting Jeran's little army, as their leader sprinted
Kat took this time to look back and see what
has become of the evil rebels and found Tiberius gaining on her. Sure enough,
she sped up and dived towards the two Draik guards at the front door of the
"You have to…help…me," she panted. "Meridell…in
The two guards just traded a bewildered look,
until Kat pointed at her back, where a Moehog was still coming towards her.
"The young lass isn't lying!" exclaimed the red
Draik guard on Kat's left.
"Tiberius! Sound the alarms! Get King Skarl and
everyone else! We must fight!" screamed the other guard frantically as he opened
the drawbridge and let himself and Kat in.
"You fools!" yelled the Darigan Moehog. "You
just gave me an opportunity to-"
Before he could take advantage of the wide open
door of Meridell Castle, the remaining Draik immediately shut it and pointed
his sword at the villain. "Just you wait," he muttered. "King Skarl will have
you behind bars for the rest of your life!" Tiberius backed away as the guard
pointed the sword at him, until the Moehog was against the walls of the castle,
not daring to move at all.
"King Skarl! King Skarl!" squealed the other
guard excitedly as he flew from one corridor to the other, with a girl running
as fast as she could at his tail. Soon, he got to the throne room and pulled
Kat to his side. The two faced the king nervously. The Draik bowed and the teenage
girl curtsied as Skarl rose from his throne.
"What brings you here, with a human girl at your
side?" he demanded of the Draik guard.
"She has been seen chased by Tiberius, Your Majesty,"
panted the guard. "She wants reinforcements in order to get the Darigan rebels
and save Meridell, and perhaps Darigan Citadel as well."
The king scratched his chin in thought and looked
at Kat straight in the eye. "So, young female…you come to me for my soldiers,
guards and maybe even citizens to help fight the forces of Tiberius?" he asked
skeptically. She nodded and added, "If I'm not mistaken, this guard's companion
is outside, dealing with the culprit right now. Jeran and the rescue troupe
are handling the rest of the rebels, Your Highness."
Skarl tapped his foot and after a few minutes
of stunned silence, finally said, "Go and summon all the guards and every worthy
and willing fighter of Meridell. We can't risk another war devastating our kingdom
"Can't…hold out…much longer…" Angel panted as
he was engaged in a swordfight against a Skeith twice as large and thrice as
menacing as he was.
"We must continue fighting, young knight," answered
Jeran as he ducked to avoid an attack by a Darigan Cybunny. "It's all part of
your commitment, and it's all for the name of justice, truth and safety." He
dived to the ground and kicked at the Cybunny's feet, sending him flying into
a nearby bush.
Fluffy looked up from where she and a Darigan
Lupe were wrestling on the grass. "Where is Kat anyway? We could use some reinforcements
right now!" she said as she tried to pin down her opponent.
"I think I see something out there," said Glitter
as she flew above the battle to scan for any approaching creatures. "It looks
like a huge crowd of something…"
"I also hope it's the reinforcements!" shouted
Alphonse the Kacheek as he was pushed aside by an attacking Grundo. Sweet pounced
on Tiberius' evil comrade and shoved him away from Alphonse.
The faerie Acara hovered higher in the air and
squinted in the distance. "I see…I see…Look! A huge bunch of Draiks and others…and…"
She hurtled downward to find out more. "Kat's leading them over to us! And…and
they've finally got Tiberius in chains!"
To be continued...