The Rainbow Pearls: Part Four
"People, wake up," moaned Quenelle, as she unsteadily pushed
herself up, rubbing the base of her sore neck.
"What the…" Chailyn drowsily said, as she rubbed
her forehead trying to remember what had happened. "Does anybody recall what
"It seems," answered Kirra, who could see their
surroundings with her night vision, they were in a jail cell," that we found
mother dearest's hide out."
"And mother is so proud that her little girl
is just so smart," Maelstra sneered sarcastically; she strolled out of the shadows
followed by two featherbrained Chia henchmen. "Hello Kirra dear. I see that
you brought friends. And I hope you have noticed my expensive new circlet."
She added, cackling and gesturing to Rina's circlet, which lay on a red velvet
pillow covered by a glass case. "Those rainbow pearls will make me very rich
and everyone knows that those who have the money, have the power." She cackled
"We should have known it was you!" said Esne,
angrily shaking the bars of their cell.
"So you should have," replied Maelstra, smugly.
She shifted her attitude to sympathy. "Oh I'm so sorry Kirra, that I have to
have your new found friends vanish. I mean if they live, they'll tell everyone
about me before I can sell this priceless circlet on the market."
"Maelstra, my lady!" Kirra tried to play loyal
servant for her friends' sake. She didn't know what was going to happen to them
but Kirra knew it was going to erase them from the face of Neopia. "Can't they
at least say good bye to their families before-before you pay your respects
to them?" begged Kirra.
"Yes, they can. I've ever so nicely brought
some of their family here," Maelstra said, snapping her fingers.
The Chias waddled into an adjacent room. When
they came back, they were dragging the tied up pets behind them. Maelstra ordered
them to take off the gags.
Their small cries of help did nothing to hydrate
Maelstra's prune of a heart, "Chailyn!" "Lucrece!" "Esne!" "Quenelle!" "Kirra!"
Each pet was screaming their owner's name out of fear and the want for comfort.
"Throw the useless beasts in the cell," ordered
Maelstra, sounding disgusted and irritated. "Can't I get some peace and quiet
around here?" Emphasizing it by throwing her arms above her head.
All of them rejoiced to see each other again,
loving licks and hugs and embraces were exchanged. However the goodness didn't
last. Late that night when everyone was asleep, the Chias came and took the
pets away again. When the morning came, there was much sorrow for they were
pretty sure they knew what was to come that day.
"Tonight I shall perform my magic show for you
lucky Mallards," announced Maelstra, confirming their suspicions. However just
before she turned away she added, "Oh, I knew I forgot to do something. Boys
remove my beloved daughter." As the girls thought this was the last time they
would see Kirra again; but Kirra wouldn't let her friends vanish to another
dimension, not now, not ever. But kicking and screaming did nothing to loosen
the Chias iron grips on her arms, Kirra wept openly as she was dragged into
a solemn, pitch-black room.
What to do? What to do? Kirra thought
over and over. Crying wouldn't do anything good for her but there just had to
be something she could do.
Moments after Kirra had been dragged off, Chailyn
suddenly exclaimed, "I've got an idea! If we could get the keys off Humpty and
Dumpy"-she referred to their snoozing guards-"over there, we could get out."
"Or," said Esne, snapping her fingers and a
ball of flames popped onto her palm," I could just melt the lock."
"That'll work," agreed Lucrece.
"Okay," said Esne to herself as she walked over
the lock, "let's see." She waved her not-burning hand under the lock. "It's
gonna be a little while. This metal is pretty thick."
"Just hurry, please," begged Quenelle.
For hours, Esne was melting the lock, even after
dark had covered their small cell. Luckily, Maelstra never came to check on
them. All hope seemed lost when midnight was drawing near and as in all bad
situations, midnight was go time. They hadn't seen heads or tails of their pets
or Kirra and they began to hope for someone to rescue them.
Suddenly Quenelle, who was dozing in a corner,
sprang awake, "Did you hear that?" Her earth faerie instincts started to pick
"Hear what?" asked Lucrece.
"Me, you dolt," said Kirra's quiet voice. One
collective gasp wept through the petite cell.
"But you're not here. In this room. With us."
"Look this gift thing comes with the package,
okay. Just listen to me for a minute." Now everyone was looking around them,
still not believing what was happening. "First, stop trying to melt the lock
'cause it isn't going to happen anytime soon. Second, I'm going to try something
to get out my prison."
Rapidly Kirra came running through the solid
door of her cell, ran straight into the barred door of the others' captivity,
and gave it a good kick. It flew open and the noise woke the Chias, who started
to seize them again.
"Scatter!" someone yelled.
Everyone turned to a different direction, the
Chias got confused instantly but each tried to take a different person to chase
after. Maelstra heard the commotion, of course, and came into the room wearing
her ritual robes. She was screaming at her henchmen but they didn't hear her.
Esne was wrestling, Chailyn was throwing water motes at warp speed, Quenelle
shooting arrows from a bow she produced from the air, and Lucrece was producing
handy blinding lights.
However, when she caught sight of her daughter,
Maelstra used her powers and pushed her against the wall; the blow knocked Kirra
unconscious. It was a tough fight and when Lucrece received a brief breather,
she shot a blot of light into the sky before getting back into the struggle.
Back at the Faerieland palace, Rina were looking
out a window and saw Lucrece's ray of light. She knew immediately that her friend
needed help. Rina ran through the palace in her embroidered nightgown, running
to the queen's chambers. Fyora was reading one of her many novels in front of
a small fire when Rina rushed in, panting out hardly decipherable words.
"Mother! Mother! Lucrece! She needs our help!"
Rina said franticly.
"For what reason, darling," asked Fyora, looking
up from her book with some seriousness.
"I think she found the circlet," answered Rina,
a little calmer, "but it came with a price."
Fyora quickly switched to Queen mode. "Summon
the guards!" She ordered a servant. "Do you know where we are going?"
"Yes I do," replied Rina, as she hurried off
to dress in something appropriate for the journey. In less than a few minutes,
with Rina leading the way, the faerie queen and a group of guards were flying
to the spot where she had seen the light.
"Get off me you fat oaf!" shrieked Maelstra,
as she kicked off one of the Chias
All of the kidnapped were fighting and somehow
the pets got the chains and gags off and were in the fight too. The fighting
stopped when Maelstra rose from the ground holding an unconscious Chailyn.
"You either give in or I make your friend disappear
where she won't be coming back. But do not worry, she won't remember any of
this," Maelstra threatened. She wasn't kidding because beneath Chailyn's limp
body a portal opened up. They were really stuck between a rock and a hard place,
until there was a low hum to be heard above them.
"What is that?" Maelstra demanded to know. The
Chias shrugged their shoulders foolishly. The hum became louder and Rina and
Fyora crashed through the ceiling with their small army. As they landed, Maelstra
ran for it. The soldiers ran after her but when she turned at to them, she was
grinning evilly. Maelstra twinkled her fingers at them and vanished in a puff
of dramatic, purple smoke.
Meanwhile Rina had run to Lucrece, they hugged
with tears streaking down their faces. Remembering the others, Lucrece turned
to them and saw that Chailyn was falling through the portal and Quenelle was
"Hold on Chailyn, we'll get you out!" she screeched,
and joined Kirra and Esne, who were trying to pull her out. Fyora's healer began
to work on Quenelle.
"No, we can't," Kirra said, the truth dawning
on her. Maelstra had wanted to harm her because she was happy and Maelstra only
looked out for Number One, so she was the only one supposed to be happy.
"What are you talking about? Of course we can!"
shouted Esne over the wind erupting from the portal.
"It takes a faerie to close it and Chailyn isn't
going to be that faerie."
"Kirra! Don't do this for me!" yelled Chailyn.
"We're all going to survive this!"
"You're right, we are going to. My only wish
was to get away from my fate. This is my chance." And in one smooth, flowing
motion Kirra pulled Chailyn out and was sucked into it, in her friend's place.
The portal disappeared in an ironic slurp! And all there was left was a quiet
echo that was still bouncing off the stone walls of the underground chamber
and the circlet with rainbow pearls glinting in the glow of the torches.
It was sunny the day Kirra's plaque was planted.
Quenelle was still a bit woozy and was sitting in a wheel chair with Shalin
kneeling at her feet; Chailyn stared into space, not uttering a word or moving
a muscle; Esne stood in a corner with tears sliding down her cheeks and Faris
sat with Chailyn's Primellas between his paws; and Lucrece sat in a chair at
the front weeping softly into a silk handkerchief. Rina and Fyora attended as
the guests of honour but no one had higher status than Jovan, Kirra's adored
Afterwards, the remaining four girls sat in a
circle on the green grass in front of the small party tent Fyora had built for
the sole purpose of the ceremony. There was a warm breeze blowing and the faeries
were fanning themselves with their wings, but Esne, Quenelle, Chailyn and Lucrece
sat in the shade with a miserable Jovan because their moods didn't need the
cheer of sunlight. Nothing could even add up to what Kirra did for Chailyn or
any of them.
They walked in silence, Quenelle being pushed
by Lucrece, as they approached Kirra's memory marker in the palace courtyard,
which sat in the shade of a beautiful fruit tree in blossom. It read, Beloved
Friend, Fallen Angel; She Finally Got Her Wings. They just stood there, reading
the message over and over.
"Do you think she's happy wherever she is?" Their
heads swiveled to face Chailyn who had finally spoke for the first time in days.
"Well, do you?" Jovan walked up to the plaque and sat in front of it, studying
it with his depressed eyes while the others pondered their answers to Chailyn's
"What's this?" he muttered when he lifted his
right paw and found a folded piece of paper under it.
"What've you got there, Jovan?" Esne asked, noticing
the paper he was toying with. She bent down and took it from him, and took a
look at it herself. "Did you just find this, now?"
"Yeah. Weird, isn't it?" Now all of them were
interested in the note and were trying to get a look at it over Esne's shoulder.
"So, what's it say?"
"Thanks for the chance, but you still owe me
some Neopoints." It couldn't be. Could it? Was the thought that was running
through their minds. It couldn't--shouldn't-- be possible. But when they looked
to the sky, they all could have sworn a shooting star streaked across the lively