Voice of the Neopian Pound Circulation: 113,211,275 Issue: 226 | 3rd day of Awakening, Y8
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The Ruby Heart: Part Two

by kindheartedfairy


I had never seen Jeremy before, unless you count one of the Maraquan Scorchios in the picture of Michelle's family before they split up and moved. Michelle had mentioned once or twice that he had painted himself Fire, and, since I didn't know exactly what Jeremy looked like and acted like before he became Fire, I couldn't really say my opinion, except that it seemed to be good for him. He had kept it and liked it. And why should I care? I suddenly thought. I quickly thought of Aaron.

      We walked a little while into the forest, then set up camp. Jeremy had brought the Tent In A Box and he and his twin were setting it up. I secretly slipped the ruby into my pocket, while they were not looking.

      Once we, or as Michelle said, they, had finished, I stood up, as I was sitting on the grass. "I think I'll go for a walk," I said. "I feel…different."

      As I walked away, towards the heart of Illusen's Forest, I heard Michelle say to Jeremy, "Of course she feels different. She hasn't thrown a single insult at me for at least weeks. Come one, let's go and…"

      I pretended not to hear her and continued walking. Soon, I reached the thickest, tallest, greatest tree, which as the pamphlets stated, marked the heart of the forest.

      I thought I heard footsteps behind me. I turned around as quickly as I could, but saw nothing. I carefully looked around, and spotted a shadow behind a Blackberry Bush and a Blushing Lavender Bush. "Come out," I snapped, guessing who it was.

      And I was correct. Out stepped Michelle, holding Jeremy's arm and covering his mouth. "Sorry, I couldn't resist following you. Jeremy tried to stop me." She removed her Darigan Scorchio hand from her twin brother's mouth.

      "What's that?" he asked, pointing in the direction of the tree with his free hand.

      Michelle and I immediately looked to find several shadows beyond the tree.

      "I know I told you to 'bring no one', but, we can find ways around it. We have never lost our chances to solve problems yet."

      That was not Aaron's voice! But only whoever wrote the note, and me, who was the only one who had read it, would know what it said! And whoever said had spoken in a way that said he or she was writer of the note. And who was he? "Who are you?" I asked, grabbing Michelle and Jeremy's hands. As much as I might wish it (though I did not entirely want to leave them), I did not want to get away from them now.

      Faster than Michelle, Jeremy, or I could react, the source of the voice -a Fire Buzz- sprang from the bushes. "See, I have brought her back to us, and now the heir is retrieved!" he announced. "General Dustin, I see it is quite good you insisted on bringing a few warriors in case someone would keep us from taking back Princess Fayre, so why don't you give your group an orde-"

      "What heir?" Michelle, Jeremy, and I interrupted in unison. "Who's Princess Fayre?"

      "-As I was saying, why don't you, General Dustin, give your group an order to ensure these two Scorchios from that small village that they are obviously from don't hold our princess hostage as we try to bring her back to the home she was stolen from fourteen years ago, and hypnotized into running away from us thirteen months ago!"

      "Small village? Hostage? Stolen? Hypnotized into running away?"

      But Jeremy was going to ask me an even harder question than his twin sister. "Princess? What did we do? Did you know about this, Michelle?"

      But everything the Fire Buzz had said was mixing with my thoughts. Why would he think Michelle and Jeremy would plan to hold me hostage? They weren't from any small village, they had grown up together in New Maraqua. I was never stolen from my home!

      And I knew nothing of what had happened when I was one, and over a year ago, when I had last seen my brother, I certainly hadn't been hypnotized into running away, I was simply doing what my older brother had instructed me to do. The only thing I knew about that was that the Fire Buzz, who I suddenly remembered had been the one who grabbed Aaron, was convinced I was under a Dark Faerie spell that was kept over me by my ruby necklace. That was how I had lost the silver chain. A Faerie Buzz had attempted to take it from me, and the chain had snapped, and the other Buzz had flown away.

      But being a princess, I was obviously the one the Fire Buzz meant. But I knew nothing of what he was talking about.

      The next thing I knew, three Buzzes-one Green, one Split, and one Halloween- had also leapt out of the bushes and on top of my two companions, who struggled, but then relaxed, probably wondering what would happen as much as I did.

      "Ah, Princess Fayre. I have not seen you for a long time. A year, I believe," the Fire Buzz said, taking my arm and pulling me into the forest, opposite of the direction I had come. "And your parents, Queen Amelia and King Kenneth of the Kingdom-that is, Atharel, the Kingdom of the Buzzes of Light, have seen you even less. They are quite impatient to see you once more. And then, as I believe that scoundrel lied to you, I will tell you the story of your past."

      "My name isn't Fayre!" I shrieked without thinking. "And you're the one who lied to me! You wrote those notes as if you were my brother! I don't even know you and I already hate you!" I tried to twist my arm out of his grasp.

      "As I said, that lying scoundrel is not your brother. You will learn to like me, for I am your parents' most trusted advisor. My name is Reginald. Ever since that Scorchio hypnotized you into running away from your people, we have held him in the dungeons of the castle. Once you have learned your true story, you may decide what to do with your 'brother'. And no matter how kind he was to you, no matter how much you cared for him, you must remember that he was only trying to trick you so that he, at some point, could destroy you, leaving our kingdom heirless, Princess Fayre. But you must enter the kingdom, where you will be safe." Reginald tightened his grip.

      I turned around to see Michelle being dragged behind us limply, while Jeremy continued struggling and he was still buzzing with questions, repeating them over and over again for a while as we walked. "Who are you? What did we do? Where are you taking u-?"

      Jeremy stopped speaking. Michelle opened her eyes. I turned around to see what everyone was looking at. There was a swirling green portal.

      Reginald stepped through it and disappeared, pulling me behind him. I allowed myself to go through as well, and when I was completely through, I saw that we stood near the edge of a tall cliff that overlooked a kingdom. In the distance, there was a great castle, behind us, many forests, and in between, quite a large number of villages and towns. I watched all of it, the tiny different coloured dots moving around, but Reginald took my shoulder with his free hand. "We must go now. Follow. You do not have to worry about those villains any more." Villains? I lived with one of them! But maybe they were trying to trick me. Maybe this Buzz and the others, and every inhabitant of this kingdom I was apparently heir to were my allies, and I was meant to come here. What was my story? What would Reginald tell me?

      We flew down towards the castle. As Reginald led us, I looked up at the sky to see dozens and dozens of Light Faeries playing above us in the clouds. That was when I decided that Reginald and everyone else here I could trust. I could trust no one else. These Buzzes were my family. I forgot about the ruby in my pocket and felt anger toward Michelle, Jeremy, William, and even Aaron. I had thought I could trust them! They were just trying to trick me! Well, at least everyone but William might have, and there was no proof he hadn't been with them. He was, I decided. No one who wasn't any Light Faerie or Buzz from this kingdom I would trust.

      I was Princess Fayre, of Atharel, the home of Buzzes and the pure Light Faeries.

      I wondered how I knew what Atharel was home to. It is because I have memories, and that I'm meant to be here. This is my home, I thought.

      When we were near the castle, I expected us to fly downwards and go through the front door. But instead, Reginald seemed to be in a hurry, and told the other Buzzes something. The Skunk Buzz, who I hadn't seen before, but I assumed that he or she simply had not tackled Michelle and Jeremy, nodded and led the other Neopets down. "Where are they going?" I asked.

      "To the dungeons to put those two prisoners where they belong," Reginald replied, leading me to the top of the castle, near the highest tower.

      When we landed, two other Royal Buzzes flew down towards us. "Fayre!" the female Royal Buzz, who I assumed was Queen Amelia, my mother, cried, arms spread out wide, running towards me. But she did not do anything once she reached me.

      "Thank you, Reginald. I see you have brought our daughter home to us," the male Royal Buzz, who I guessed correctly was my father, King Kenneth, said, although I did detect a lack of love in it. He just doesn't know me, he'll learn to love me, I thought.

      "I told Princess Fayre that I will tell her the story of her past," Reginald told them. "But she may want either of you or both of you to do so."

      "Yes, I would like my parents to tell me my history," I replied, speaking for the first time in ten minutes.

To be continued...

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» The Ruby Heart: Part One
» The Ruby Heart

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