A Wizards Beginning: Part Six
The street was even worse when you were out there than
when you were inside. It was a wreck and that's the only word Ramek could use
to describe it. The paved street was cracked and filled with holes the size
of a room. Many metal parts were scattered along the street. Old issues of the
Neopian Times flew across the sky and rummaged through the streets, comics and
articles rolling past. Buildings lined the streets and most of their windows
were broken in and some glass lay scattered across the street. Other buildings
looked perfectly normal despite the fact that they were rundown and uninhabited.
Ramek also saw some stray pets walking slowly down deserted alleyways that led
in between buildings. Some looked back at him, eyes longing for something; others
just ignored him and walked past, trying not to look needy.
The Draik had been standing there for a good
few minutes, looking and observing the ransacked streets and buildings, going
closer to check out a few unusual looking things. He hoped that something on
the street would lead him up farther than he was now. He could attempt to climb
the large building which housed the lobby he was once in, but the building itself
was at least fifty stories high. Climb it? He knew the spell to stick his claws
to the surface, but it was very risky and inaccurate. Guess there was nothing
else he could do...
He walked towards the wall and put all his claws
atop the cold wall. "Stick it once, stick it twice, thrice the hour, till the
night." He had to make small adjustments to the spell, calculating that the
shortest time he would use it is for three hours and the longest would be by
nightfall, which he predicted was about six or seven hours away. He felt his
claws plant into the wall and he moved his left hand, leaving his right below
and started to crawl up the wall.
It was difficult. Every time one hand would go
up, the other would hang below, leaving Ramek hanging from the wall on only
one hand. Once he got his other hand up on the wall, he'd repeat the grueling
process all over again, flailing when heavy gusts hit, knocking him back and
forth against the wall, cutting his lips and face as they will into the pebble-like
wall. It was hard to look up, though Ramek liked to get a good idea of where
he was going. He didn't seem to be getting any closer, but he felt sure that
eventually he would reach his goal.
"Got to...keep...going," he muttered to himself
as he maneuvered his hands on the wall, praying all the way along that he'd
make it to the top safely.
Sweat poured from his forehead and covered his
face. He was panting heavily, trying to catch his breath. His lungs wouldn't
inflate to their full capacity, forcing him to have short breaths, only giving
him the amount of air he needed if he was sleeping.
A crash alerted him from his deep thoughts. He
looked to both the left and the right. He gasped and tried to move faster when
he saw a hand flailing around outside a broken window. Ramek could hear a loud
screaming from inside. The scream chattered his teeth and made him want to jump
off and never hear anything again. But he kept moving, hearing footsteps seemingly
following him from inside. His adrenaline kicked in about the same time his
panic kicked in and he moved even faster than before. But that energy boost
only lasted so long. Before long, he had to take a short rest stop. Hopefully
whatever was out to get him wouldn't be able to tell that he had stopped moving.
Maybe it wasn't as smart as it seemed...
Ramek made sure he wasn't near and windows and
then leaned into the wall, breathing deeply. He was exhausted and wasn't sure
if he could make it the minimum of two hours to the top. He calculated he had
been going up the wall for at least two or three hours. He could see the top
of the building, but it was still looming in the distance, far out of reach.
He then felt a strong grip on his hand. His head
swung around to see who had grabbed his ankle. Nothing was there. He was starting
to imagine things. He slowly turned his head back and his ankle was grabbed
again. This was no hallucination. He was feeling the touch. The cold, scaly
hands that grasped his ankle.
Ramek started to run up faster on the wall, but
he couldn't. The hand was holding him tightly, not letting him move at all.
"What are you?" Ramek yelled, looking down at the invisible form below.
No one answered at first but then he heard a
raspy answer. "Shut up and come with me." Something about the voice sounded...normal.
Ramek wanted to run away, but he was instinctively
drawn to the voice, feeding off every word it said. "Yes..." came Rameks reply,
in a slightly more hoarse voice than normal. "I will come with you..."
"Good," it replied. The rasp had gone and Ramek
was snapped out of his trance. "Now, hit it before the Dark Power finds that
I escaped. He says I'm the 'good seed' and keep a steady eye on me. I heard
he was going to kill you. I'm not like everyone in the Closeby. I'm not...evil."
Ramek listened intently. He sounded truthful
but...he had tried to kill him, right? He was chasing him... No, he was trying
to catch up to him to save him. I think... Ramek was confused.
"Now!" the voice shouted, grabbing his ankle
Ramek slowly moved with the invisible creature,
somehow trusting his gut and saying he was good. He was dragged to a broken
window and slowly dragged through, landing on a soft carpet.
"Where did you bring me?" Ramek asked, looking
around for some sign of the person who had carried him inside.
Ramek almost jumped back as he saw a Zafara seem
to come out of nowhere. "Name is Delor."
Delor nodded. "Dark has been talking about you
a lot lately. He says that you are a powerful Wizard and said that he wants
to challenge you. So, he caused a crisis right when you were to go on the Journey.
And now you're here. He wants to lure you up there, proceed you into a real
duel, and then kill you with a single blast of powerful magic."
Ramek had some of his questions answered, but
a few still remained. He figured now was a time better than ever. "Why did you
come and get me?"
"I don't follow the Dark Power. He isn't the
true Power. I secretly practice Wizardry behind his back. I was caught once
and he called me his 'good seed'. This would mean he wants me to be evil, but
I refuse. And since that time, he's been keeping a very close eye on me. He's
sent his Minions to try to capture and kill me. So far, I've killed most of
them but quite a few of them are still on the prowl."
"What exactly are Minions?" Ramek asked. As she
continued to talk, more questions started to form in his head.
Delor didn't answer for a minute and stuck her
head out the door, looking to both sides. "Minions are creatures made by the
Dark Power," she started as she came back into the room. "They were created
over six thousand years-"
"Six thousand years?" Ramek asked, surprised.
"Wizardry has been going on for much longer than
Neopia has existed. You should know that if you read the 'History' section in
your Manual," she commented. "Anyway, he made them as a way to capture invaders
and either kill them or bring them back to the Dark Lord. And...they know my
scent. They track it and find me. But I've set up a spell to confuse them. So,
if they find me it'll be by accident."
"Wait, wait. You're a Wizard?" Ramek asked. There
was no way she could complete a spell without being a Wizard and practicing
"Kind of," came her reply. "Wizards grant people
they call Trustees a certain amount of power in the Art, but no way near the
capability that a Wizard would have. They chose me simply because I had access
to the Dark Power and would be able to report them on his plans. But, ever since
the Dark Power caught me practicing the Art, he kept everything quiet around
me. Now I learn things only from word of mouth. Some other people here hate
the Dark Power and feed me information when they find it appropriate. I was
able to grant them very basic Wizardry, but only a few simple ones. Even less
than you know."
Ramek nodded. The information was coming at him
fast. He hadn't learned anything about this in either what he'd read in the
Manual or Tyvek, but he assumed it was true as he could of sworn Tyvek mentioning
something about trusted people who had a tad bit of magic in them.
Delors' nose crinkled up and poked her head outside
and turned both ways. "We have to move," she whispered.
To be continued...