Stand behind yer sheriff Circulation: 164,193,775 Issue: 173 | 14th day of Sleeping, Y7
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The Tower Journey: Part Eight


by neonick19881988

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Part Eight: Meridell vs Darigan II: Attack of the Radish

The sword moved around from Toggerneo's side to in front of him, and suddenly the Gelert was looking into an exact replica of himself. Everything was the same- the long Gelert ears, huge paws- only one thing was different. This replica had fierce, yellow eyes.

     "Hello," whispered the replica pet. "You might know me from such wars as Meridell vs. Darigan, and Meridell vs. Kass. Nobody seems to like this dung-filled time warp, do they? Bizarre…"

     "Who…" stuttered the real Toggerneo, "who are you?"

     "I used to be one of the most powerful creatures on Neopia. Lord Darigan himself! And now look!" He was yelling suddenly, waving the sword around. "I have been forced to hide in this foolish shape-"

     "Hey!"

     "- to hide from the Meridell masses who see me as 'evil' and 'mad'. I saved them, for goodness sake, and, for the record, I'm perfectly sane. All my evil minions agree."

     And then the replica Gelert grinned, throwing the sword to one side. After breathing a sigh of relief, Toggerneo frowned.

     "What's going on? Are you trying to trick me? I'll have you know I'm extremely intelligent."

     "No trick!" Darigan laughed, smiling broadly. "A little evil humour. To lighten the mood."

     "The mood isn't going to go much higher," the Gelert said sarcastically, looking around the dusty chamber. "I'm in the mood for dancing, you know."

     "Really?"

     "No! More the screaming and running away mood!"

     "Don't worry!" Darigan cackled. "I don't want to hurt you. And I only stole the money so I could buy all the materials I need."

     "Materials?"

     "I'm gonna show the world that I'm a nice guy." Darigan was obviously very pleased with himself, which scared Toggerneo even more.

     "You attacked Meridell with millions of evil creatures of the night!" the Gelert exclaimed.

     "A little harmless fun. Now, I can finally remove this enchantment." From his pocket the evil Lord drew a large bottle of some strange looking liquid, and swallowed it in one gulp. With a crackle of lightning the Gelert was gone, replaced by a Korbat-like thing who was already painting himself with a large, spooky paintbrush. Within moments the weak form of Darigan, still looking ill from his defeat so many months before, was in the room, and he dusted himself off before turning and walking away. Toggerneo followed him quickly onto a vast balcony, and, seeing the entire Meridell army below, started to sweat.

     "Pets of Meridell!" yelled Darigan, capturing their attention. "I took your money, not this Gelert! But it was for a good cause! Here!"

     And with that he started pulling hundreds upon hundreds of Darigan Paint Brushes and Plushies from the numerous pockets of his robes, and flung them all over the edge. Toggerneo leapt forwards and managed to snatch a few from the air, stuffing them into his backpack before turning back to the madness.

     Darigan was smiling at the confused crowds, obviously pleased with himself.

     "I have given you expensive presents! That means I'm good, right? Right. Now, how do I go about becoming King?"

     And with that the Radish struck the mad creature on the head, and he tumbled backwards, unconscious.

     "For pointing out our errors," said the King in a bored tone, "and as apology for locking you away without proper reason, I give you all the items we can offer on your list." He waved his hand and Jeran stepped forwards, pulling behind him a large cart piled high with items. Toggerneo gasped. Cardboard Sprout Cannons, Radish Bows and Regulation Crossbows, Royal Paintbrushes and Portable Kilns- this had knocked loads from his list. He smiled his thanks and started stuffing everything into his backpack, sending them straight to the Hidden Tower where they were needed.

     Jeran himself stepped forwards once the Gelert was finished packing, and brought three items out from behind his back.

     "A Carrotblade I grew myself. I was going to give it to a Cybunny I know, but I'll make another for him." He handed over the weapon proudly. "Not only that, but a set of Jeran and Lisha Plushies. She was up all night making them, she was so happy." That too went into the backpack. "And finally… The Sunshine Shield. I used it recently, when I went up to the Citadel to see what was going on. I have a better shield now, so don't worry." He grinned as the final item went into the bag, and then turned and walked away, the King at his side.

     "That's all very nice, and thank you very much. Can I ask something though?"

     "Go ahead," the King sighed.

     "How do I get to Neopia Central?"

     "Meridell isn't good enough for you?!" the Skeith snapped angrily, and Toggerneo drew back. He'd been worried about this; he could just imagine himself getting eaten-

     The King suddenly grinned, and then spoke in a soft, pleased tone.

     "I have a cart going there today. It'll get you there."

     Toggerneo coughed one final time as he climbed down from the large cart onto the stone cobbles of Neopia Central. The dung-filled vehicle that the King had 'kindly' provided continued onwards, towards the Money Tree, while the Gelert brushed as much of the smelly stuff from his clothes as he could. When he looked up the first thing his gaze was drawn to was a small, strangely squat blue building.

KAUVARAS MAGIC POTIONS

     He looked around and walked across to the small doorway, glancing inside briefly but seeing little due to the lack of light. Strange smells wafted from the dark building, and the Gelert took a long breath before stepping inside.

     The entire place was filled with hundreds upon hundreds of bottles, all strangely shaped and filled with bizarre liquids. A cauldron stood in the centre of the shop, the contents bubbling.

     Something smashed into Toggerneo, sending him tumbling forwards.

     "That was one of my best potions!" his attacker yelled from behind. "That Gelert hair, the Rainbow Paint, it's not the sort of thing you use for evil!" Toggerneo turned and saw a huge wooden spoon swinging towards him, and he only just rolled out of the way. Kauvara wasn't a happy Kau.

     "Wait! I'm not that guy! It's Toggerneo!"

     Kauvara stopped and stared at the Gelert.

     "Toggerneo was red."

     "I fell in Swirly Potion! In the Lost Desert!"

     Suddenly it seemed to click, and Kauvara gasped.

     "Oh, I am so sorry! I thought you were that creepy pet, the one that bought my Rainbow Gelert Potion! I got message that it was being used to steal things-"

     "Don't worry, it's all been sorted."

     "Good." Kauvara smiled and then turned to the cauldron. "Oh dear, the Slumberberry Potion is boiling."

     Toggerneo smiled as Kauvara got back to work. After a few moments, when she didn't speak, he coughed, but she seemed too involved in her work to notice. Eventually he gave up and just asked it straight.

     "You know how I give you fur for your potions?"

     The Kau nodded. "Yes?"

     "And never ask for payment?"

     "Yes?"

     "How about some of that potion?"

     "Yes?"

     Toggerneo frowned. "Kauvara, there's a Cybunny on your head."

     "Yes?"

     "You're not listening to me, are you?"

     "Yes?"

     The Gelert sighed and poked the Kau as she stirred the potion. She looked up and nodded.

     "You can take some of my potion, and some Slorg Flakes from my cupboard, if you're collecting for who I think you're collecting for. Usually have them for breakfast, but I've gone off them. There isn't a Cybunny on my head. Pass me those berries, please."

     Toggerneo grinned as he handed over the berries, before starting towards the kitchen.

     "Excuse me, do you know where I can find Little Timmy?" Toggerneo asked. Upon leaving Kauvara's shop she had told him that the little Tuskaninny had passed her shop, and she had seen something that the Gelert would want.

     The Acara frowned, as if deep in thought. "I… don't remember."

     "Well, uhh, where does he live?"

     "Uhh… in a house. Sorry, my memory's a bit rough these days."

     "Well, would he be at Neoschool?"

     "Ha! Good one!"

     "What?"

     "Nothing. I'll tell you where he could be, though. A bunch of kids went towards the Money Tree earlier, if my memory serves me."

     "Thanks," Toggerneo said as he turned on his heel. He could just about see the top of the tree behind the many shops here in the Bazaar, and started towards it at a jog. This he gave up as soon as he realised that moving fast made him sleepy, and so after a leisurely stroll the Gelert was next to the huge smiling tree.

     A bunch of kids were stood around the base of the tree, watching as items were placed down by invisible, ghostly hands and then promptly snatched up by any pets nearby. The kids weren't trying to take anything, instead playing with yoyos or chatting to each other. Little Timmy was in the middle of the group, waving a small action figure at his friends whilst laughing almost insanely.

     Toggerneo coughed and stood as tall as possible, before walking quickly over to the kids.

     "What's going on here, then?"

     "Huh?" The kids glanced up at this strange Gelert with a mixture of shock and interest. "Who're you, Mister?"

     "I'm with the authorities. It turns out your toys are dangerous, or, more precisely-" He glanced quickly at his list- "- the Yoyo of Death and Ultra Bubble Gun are. And that Hannah Action Figure has a defect. Hand them over now please."

     The kids looked at each other for a moment, and then laughed. "GET HIM!"

     Toggerneo was woken when two real Policepets poked him in the side with their feet. He had been hit with many small pebbles, bubbles and, strangely enough, yoyos, and the attack had only stopped when these two cops had arrived. Luckily for Toggerneo, some of the children had dropped their weapons in their haste to escape, so the Gelert quickly collected up the Bubble Guns and Yoyos while his confused saviours continued on to the Bank. Little Timmy hadn't dropped his Action Figure though, but before he could wonder where the Tuskaninny had gone a voice boomed from behind.

     "Oy, you!"

     The Rainbow Gelert looked up at the speaker. It was the Money Tree.

     "Yes?"

     "I'm no idiot, you know. Those were items from the Hidden Tower. Fyora out of stock again?"

     "Uhh… yeah."

     "Faeries just aren't as smart as trees, are they? Climb up to my top branch and grab an Everlasting Apple."

     Toggerneo looked up at the huge tower of a tree and gulped.

     "Can't you crouch down or something?"

     "I'm a tree. I'm lucky I can talk!"

     "OK…"

     The Gelert walked slowly towards the trunk and reached out. With one paw he tugged himself onto the lowest branch, and from there the next lowest- within minutes he was near the top of the tree, surrounded by large leafs and strange creaking noises. Finally he was back out into the open, although much higher than before.

     "Wait a second, I think I've just remembered I have a fear of heights."

     "No you don't!" yelled the Tree.

     "How about a fear of wood?"

     A glistening red shape caught his eye, and after a few moments of running along the thick branch he was next to the apple, and smiling. In one movement he had scooped it into his backpack.

     "Got it!"

     "Aaa…"

     The tree wobbled, and Toggerneo frowned.

     "… aaaahhh…."

     The entire thing shook, and the poor Gelert almost fell over.

     "…AHCHOOOOO!"

     The Tree had sneezed, and shook so violently that Toggereno, who had been trying desperately to grab onto the wood, was sent hurtling into the Rainbow Pool below.

     "Don't worry!" yelled the Tree as he tumbled downwards. "I never liked Rainbow pets anyway."

To be continued...

 
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Other Episodes


» The Tower Journey: Part One
» The Tower Journey: Part Two
» The Tower Journey: Part Three
» The Tower Journey: Part Four
» The Tower Journey: Part Five
» The Tower Journey: Part Six
» The Tower Journey: Part Seven
» The Tower Journey: Part Nine



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