Midnight over Meridell - Chapter II: Part Four
Part IV: The Gemstone of Fire
We continued to stare at the cavern ahead of us, doing
nothing but watching the Coconuts below continue with their work, oblivious
to everything except themselves. Unfortunately, due to our lack of attention,
we ourselves were oblivious to the Shamans that had managed to surround us.
After five minutes of watching us standing there, gaping at the Coconuts below,
Pango Pango sighed and began to speak. However, unlike the Coconuts, he spoke
"You have invaded the sanctuary of the great
Pango Pango!" he boomed, his voice echoing all over the cavern. At the sound
of their god's voice, the Coconuts stopped what they were doing and bowed down
to the huge Coconut. "Explain your reasons for being here!"
"What do we do?" I hissed nervously at Luun
and eyeing the spears with great apprehension - they were, like the previous
ones, very sharp, hurtful-looking and seemed to imply that they could dish out
plenty of damage.
"Let me handle this," she muttered back out
of the corner of her mouth, "and kneel down when I start to talk to him.
"Lord Pango Pango-" We quickly knelt down, "-
we have come for a request!"
The giant Coconut lifted himself slightly from
his throne and his eyes (despite the fact they were completely black) narrowed
"What sort of request?" he said sharply.
"We have come for the Gemstone of Fire!" Luun
said, "My disciples and I-" My pets blinked, "- are in great need of the artefact;
our land is in danger without it!"
"What use could my Gemstone be to you?" Pango
Pango said, and held out a hand. There was a flash of red light and a small
glitter appeared above it - due to the distance between us, I couldn't make
it out properly, but I could tell it would have to be the size of my fist, due
to the size of his hand.
"Have you heard of the Sword of Four Colours?"
Luun said, maintaining eye contact with the gigantic Coconut.
"Yes, but that weapon was the destruction of
our ancestors!" Pango Pango said, glaring as though the thought was mocking
him, "It was dismantled for a reason, and should never be re-assembled!"
"So we cannot…?" Luun said, looking crestfallen.
"No, you may not!" Pango Pango said, his voice
rising to a yell, "Guards! Throw them in the dungeon!"
"But… what? No!" Luun said, pulling out her
wand as the Shamans around us began to advance, their spears held forward. "Why
"We cannot risk the Sword being reunited with
its powers!" he roared, pointing a threatening finger at us, "It will be the
destruction of Neopia!"
"Okay, time for Plan B!" Luun yelled, stunning
two of the Shamans.
"What's that?" I shouted, backing away from
"Just pull out a weapon and fight!" shouted
Triy, drawing his swords and parrying two Shamans and retaliating by swiping
viciously at them.
I conjured up my double blade again and frantically
started slashing at the Coconuts. They were very experienced fighters - they
blocked all my attacks almost lazily and more than once I was forced to dodge
"Okay," I muttered, "time to focus more in my
I dropped my weapon - the Coconuts exchanged
very slightly surprised looks - and began employing various martial arts attacks
on the Shamans. One brought his spear down heavily, and I blocked it by catching
it by the pole. Yanking the spear out of his grasp, I twirled it gracefully
and snapped it on my knee. The now disarmed Coconut began chanting some form
of spell. I shot my foot out at him, connecting it with his face. He flew across
the ledge we were on and crashed into a wall, unconscious. Usually when someone's
foot smashes into your face at high speed, it does that.
"Anyone else want some?" I said threateningly,
but I couldn't conceal my grin. Unfortunately, I copped a stunning spell to
the head and fell to the ground, all senses fading away.
~ * ~
"I still can't believe you take that long just
to have a bath," Ingibong said irritably, striding through the boiling heat
of the Volcano. "How could you make it possible?"
"Simple - that vomit had hardened due to the
sun and we had a hard time getting it off without a scouring pad," Dhestar replied,
shrugging. "It was pretty hard stuff."
"Yeah, it was sort of crusted over, a bit like
a plate mail, and-"
"Stop!" Ingibong shouted, a greenish tinge appearing
on his face, "Just stop, that's disgusting…"
Dhestar and Karadier smirked at each other -
despite Ingibong's tough exterior, he was easily grossed out.
"Okay, we're approaching the Core now," he said,
bringing his Mind Map back up, "so we should have- uh-oh!"
He flicked his arms up and cast Veil of the
Eye, and pulled the two Eyries aside. Not a moment too soon, either, as a group
of Coconut Shamans marched past carrying two unconscious Draiks, an owner, a
cowering Uni, and a Blue Ixi, along with a Christmas Ixi and Ice Bori, both
of which were bound and gagged.
"That's them!" Ingibong whispered gleefully,
"If they're out of the way, then we'll have a lot less trouble!"
Unfortunately, as he dispelled the Veil, he
failed to notice one of the Draiks stir and spot them. As they had no idea of
this, they continued, untroubled, to the Molten Core. Roughly five minutes later,
they made it.
"There he is," Ingibong whispered to the two
Eyries, pointing at the Coconut God, who was sitting in his throne with one
hand on its corresponding side cheek (at least it looked like a cheek - it's
hard to tell with giant Coconut Gods), the other on one knee, and looking bored,
"now, although we are powerful, he isn't to be underestimated… Fortunately,
without his Shaman Guard, he'll be easily distracted by you two, so I'll be
able to snatch the Gemstone without him noticing…"
"Not very likely," Pango Pango said, not even
looking up. He flicked his hand that was on his knee. A jet of silver light
shot towards the three demonic pets.
"Holy dog toffee!" Ingibong yelped, grabbing
the two Eyries and soaring into the air with them. The light hit the ledge they
were on and blasted it into a large amount of small pieces (if that makes any
sense), "Dhestar! Karadier! Evasive actions!"
The two Eyries nodded in silent acknowledgement
and he released them. Spreading their wings as far out as they could, they pelted
towards Pango Pango and circled him. He shot several energy bolts at them impatiently.
"Honestly, do you seriously think you can defeat
me?" he said, forming a globe of energy in his hand and hurling it at one Eyrie
- he managed to conjure a force shield around him at the last moment, "The Gemstone
is mine, and- Hey!"
Whilst the Coconut God was trying to blast Dhestar
and Karadier out of the air, Ingibong had slipped past, undetected, and snatched
the Gemstone from him. It was hidden very unprofessionally - on the throne,
of all places. Mind, as the Coconut rarely left his throne, it was very well
hidden. Unfortunately for the Striped Shoyru, the God had finally spotted him,
which meant he was in trouble.
"Eep," he said, rolling aside as Pango Pango,
abandoning his magic, smashed the throne to pieces with his hand.
"Guards!" he roared, "Subdue them! Throw them
in the dungeon! THEY HAVE THE GEMSTONE!"
"Fat chance," Ingibong sneered. "Your pathetic
guards are still throwing those worthless pets and owner in the dungeons. The
Gemstone belongs to Drow now, and you can't stop him!"
Laughing (although he was feeling far from cheerful),
Ingibong stunned the giant Coconut and motioned for the two Eyries to follow
him. Cackling, they soared out of the Molten Core.
~ * ~
I opened my eyes, feeling myself being pulled
along by strong hands. Around me were around ten Shamans. Next to me, Triy's
head was lolling, his eyes closed. He seemed unconscious. I was about to say
something abusive to the guards when his eyes snapped open; he quickly put a
finger to his mouth and then pretended to be unconscious again.
"Bet you don't feel too tough now, do you?"
one of the Coconuts said to me, "Still, that's what you get for challenging
the might of Pango Pango…"
I chose not to answer (mainly because I couldn't
understand a word he was saying) but threw him a dirty glare. He chuckled quietly.
"This is what you get for challenging his authority…
he's just too powerful for minors…"
I ignored it and continued my dignified silence
as Triy told me to through his mute order. Finally, the Coconuts stopped in
front of a door and pushed us in. Everyone else randomly regained consciousness
just as they did so. Inside was a long stairway, leading into darkness. Oddly
enough, they didn't follow.
"Why aren't they-" began Triy, but suddenly,
the stairs beneath us, in a usual cliché style, bent together, forming a smooth
"Darn," I said, and we slid, screaming, down
to the dungeon below. After a few seconds of sliding, the ramp turned into the
floor and we caused a large pileup at the foot of it. Unfortunately, it was
too dark for us to see anything.
"Well, now what?" said Luun.
"Who said that?" asked BUREUNIKONE.
"It was me," Luun said.
"Oh, I thought it was you, Eralta," BUREUNIKONE's
voice came again.
"I'm Alkarasydes; I think Eralta is over there."
"Who said that?" I asked.
"Alkarasydes," said Opessenc.
"Argh, this is pointless!" came Eralta's voice,
and all of a sudden some short-range light filled the dungeon we were in - obviously,
she had cast Magic Torch.
"So, where are we?" asked Triy.
"Evidently, the dungeon of the Volcano," said
BUREUNIKONE, disentangling himself from the group and observing the walls. They
had strange symbols set upon them, mainly pictures of natives with undesirable
objects through them and skeletons armed with incredibly hurtful weapons and
masks much like the ones the Coconut Shaman Guards from before had. Oddly enough,
the skeletons and mummies were also shaped like the Coconuts from before.
"Coconut mummies and skeletons, now I've seen
everything," said Eralta quietly.
"Ever seen a guy eat his own head?" Triy asked.
"Then you haven't."
"Do you want to?"
Triy proceeded to eat his own head.
"Now you've seen everything," his voice said,
and his head reappeared with a slight pop.
"Enough poop, it's time to try and find a way
out of here," I said sternly. We began by trying to climb up the ramp we had
come in from - we failed miserably, too. We tried a different tack, this time
smashing down walls by running headlong into them. The fruits of our achievements
were several concussions. Finally, Luun told us that hidden dungeons usually
had a hidden switch to allow the prisoners to get out, in case the prisoner
was found innocent. We vented our rage at her not telling us, and started to
"Any luck?" I asked the others after five minutes
"Nope," replied the others.
"No, wait!" said Opessenc, finding a tile with
a gruesome picture of spikes closing in on a Coconut - that's enough detail.
"No Opessenc, don't touch-!" I started to yell,
but too late. He had pressed the switch, and instantly, spikes sprung out of
holes in the walls, and then began to close in on us.
"Nice one!" I yelled, backing away from the
"Thanks!" Opessenc yelled back, mashing the
panel with his hoof.
"Try and override it!" I screamed as the spikes
drew ever closer.
"I'm trying, I'm trying!" he shouted.
"It's too late!" shrieked Eralta. And she was
right. In a matter of seconds, screams and the grinding of metal on metal, it
was all over.
To be continued…