Chet Flash wuz here Circulation: 120,207,245 Issue: 243 | 9th day of Relaxing, Y8
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The Lost King of Geraptiku: Part Five


by violajunky

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Donis ran swiftly through a dark hall. He didn't know why he was running or who he was running from. All he knew was that he mustn't stop. There were hundreds of thousands of doors on either side of him, but none of them was the right one. Donis stopped, turned to the right, and opened a door made of a dark brown wood. He stepped into the room. Inside there was an enormous brick fireplace in which a glowing fire roared and cackled at Donis from the other side of the room. In front of the fire, there sat a dark high-backed chair. Donis slowly walked towards the chair. When he reached it, the chair swiveled around. Sitting in the chair was a creature wearing a dark cape with a hood covering his face. The creature spoke in a deep raspy voice to him. "I know where you are hiding, Donis... I'm coming for you." The hooded figure pulled his cloak off to reveal a pair of red, glowing, eyes.

     ***

     "AHHHHH!!!!!!" Donis screamed as he sat up in bed.

     "What? What's the matter, King Donis?" Zar said as he turned to look at the little blue Chia that was sweating and breathing very heavily.

     "I had a bad dream... with Lord Vagio in it. He said-he said he knew where I was hiding, and that he'd be coming for me."

     Donis sat up in bed and reached for the vial on his bedside table.

     "You must be more careful, Sir. I hate to repeat myself but... I told you so. I told you Miss Torinia is always right."

     Zar slithered off to Donis and curled up on his lap. Donis took a swig from the vial and put it back onto the table beside his bed.

     "Just rub it in, why don't you... " Donis said, curling back under the covers.

     "Well, if you had listened in the first place, you would have never had that dream."

     Donis sat up again and said, "It wasn't a dream... it was real."

     "Nonsense," said Zar. "Now go back to sleep. You need your rest."

     Donis glared at the Quetzal, but fell asleep immediately anyways.

     "Poor King Donis... " Zar thought as he stared at him in the darkness. "He is still not ready for the many challenges he has to face. But... for now, I will let him sleep."

     Zar rested his long angular serpentine face on his master's chest, breathing rhythmically in time with Donis' heart.

     ***

     "King Donis! Wake up!" Torinia said flinging open the curtains in Donis' bedroom. Donis moaned and pulled the comforter over his head to block out the soft sunlight that crept across the room. Zar yawned and nudged Donis with the end of his tail.

     "Wake up, Donis. It's breakfast time," the Quetzal said.

     At the sound of the word 'breakfast' Donis flung the covers off himself and onto Zar who snorted and quickly slithered out onto the floor.

     "Sorry... " Donis apologized and looked at Torinia who has now standing in his doorway.

     "I hope you like pancakes and eggs." She smiled at Donis who nodded vigorously and swiftly walked down the old creaky steps. When he reached the kitchen, a most wondrous smell filled his nostrils.

     "What is that smell!" he exclaimed as he drifted towards the table, his nose leading the way. Donis glanced down at the pancakes and stopped.

     "Do you like it? It's Essence of Slorg. It makes the muscles strong!" Torinia grinned and took a seat across the table from Donis.

     The pancakes were smothered in a strange greenish brown goop that looked awfully like smashed Slorg.

     "Eeeeewww... " Donis thought as he sat at the table.

     Zar slithered along side him and up into his chair. He took a bite of pancake of his plate and smiled.

     "It's good! I can feel my muscles strengthening already," he said to Donis who still hadn't touched his pancakes.

     "Eat up! It'll make you strong and ready to travel today," Torinia said, shoveling another forkful of pancakes into her mouth.

     "We're traveling?" Donis asked. "Where are we traveling to?"

     "We're traveling to the city, of course! I have to get some supplies today, and I would like it if you came with me. It's not safe to be here alone." Torinia looked at Donis from over her cloudy glasses.

     Donis nodded, and took a bite of the now cold pancakes that rested on his plate. At first, they tasted a tad bitter, like something had crawled into his mouth and then died. After a few seconds, a deliciously sweet taste filled his mouth and he swallowed. His whole body filled with energy as Donis took another bite.

     "I'm glad you like it!" Torinia exclaimed, clasping her hands together in happiness. Donis smiled and took another bite.

    

      After they were all finished eating, Torinia waved her paw and the plates cleared of all debris and zoomed into the cabinets above the rusty old sink behind her.

     "Alright then, Donis!" said Torinia. Donis jumped out of his chair and stood up.

     "I want you to go into the living room and bring me my bag from the big squishy chair," she said.

     Donis nodded and ran to the living room. There, on the table, in the exact place it had been when he had last seen, was the crystal ball.

     "Should I touch it?" Donis asked Zar, who was still in the dining room.

     "Do you think you should?" Zar asked him in return.

     Donis thought about it for a second, and then quickly placed his left hand on the small glass sphere. Donis stared into the crystal ball and saw himself, Zar, and Torinia in a small market. Torinia entered a shop full of timepieces, and Donis followed her. All of a sudden, Donis and Zar disappeared. A red claw swam into view, and blocked out the rest of the vision. A voice said very clearly in Donis' ear, "The key is very easy to get, Donis."

     Then, just like that, it was over.

     "Donis?" Torinia called from the kitchen.

     "Coming!" Donis hollered back, grabbing the light purple bag from Torinia's chair and rushing back in to give it to her.

     "Thank you, my dear. Let's go!" Torinia swung the bag onto her arm and walked to the door. Zar looked up at Donis who looked back at him.

     "Well?" Zar asked, "What are you waiting for?"

     Donis gulped and Torinia motioned from the doorway. He smiled and followed her slowly out of the safety of her huge house.

     ***

     When they reached the market center in the middle of the city, Donis gasped. It was nothing like the Geraptiku he remembered from modern Neopia. There were all sorts of flowers planted everywhere and large bright colored palm trees swayed in the light breeze of early morning. If Donis remembered correctly from the maps they gave out in Neopia Central, Geraptiku was pretty bare. This was not so now, as the market was so filled with people, it almost rivaled the marketplace of the Lost Desert.

     "Goodness," Donis whispered, staring the people who rushed about, haggling loudly over food, petpets and other knickknacks.

     "Follow me!" Torinia shouted, and rushed into the crowd, Donis and Zar close behind her.

     

    When they had visited almost every store in the marketplace, Donis was exhausted.

     "Are we just about done?" he asked Torinia, schlepping along behind her as they walked to the end of the market.

     "Not quite," Torinia whispered, walking into a grubby tent on the far side of the market.

      Donis gasped as he stared at the shop. The fading sign, which was painted rather messily onto a small plank of wood nailed to a pole, read, 'Gack's Time Shop.' Donis blinked and Torinia walked inside.

     "Er," he said, "I have to go to the bathroom. We should head back."

     Torinia shook her and said, "Not yet. Word on the street is Gack here just got in a new shipment of Techo Clocks yesterday, and I want to check them out."

     Donis narrowed his eyes and said, "Are you kidding me? Those things cost, like, 200 neopoints!"

     Torinia slapped her hand over Donis' mouth, put her finger to her lips and shook her head.

     "Not here," she whispered, "and now. They might have been in your time, but they are actually very rare here. Now come inside!"

     Donis had no choice. He reluctantly followed Torinia into the dark tent, Zar slithering slowly along beside him. As soon as he entered the shop, a long red claw grabbed him and Zar from the shadows and knocked them on the head. Donis' vision went black and he could hear Zar's faint voice in his head say, "Remember the crystal ball."

    

      What seemed like hours later, Donis sat up and his head started to spin.

     "Where are we?" Donis asked Zar with his mind.

     "In a dungeon," Zar stated calmly.

     "WHAT?!?" Donis yelled, jumping up.

     He blinked back the darkness and stared at his surroundings. They were indeed in a dungeon: a very small, filthy, and smelly dungeon. There was a stack of hay in one corner and a small empty bowl in the other. There were four walls, all of which were made of brick, and no windows. The only light in the dungeon came from a fading light bulb that hung from the ceiling, casting shadows of the bars onto the hall outside Donis and Zar's cell. Donis stared at the bars, measuring the space between them with his mind.

     "Ha!" he laughed, staring at Zar.

     "What?" Zar asked.

    "I bet you could fit through those bars," Donis said, pointing at the bars.

     "I dunno," Zar said, slithering slowly toward the bars.

     "Just try it, ok?" Donis pleaded.

     "Alright," Zar said, slithering towards the bars. As he began to slide between two of them, Zar was thrown back and slammed against the wall on the opposite side of the cell.

     "What was that?" Donis asked, rushing to Zar's side.

     "That," said a cold voice from behind him, "is an anti-escape mechanism I invented myself."

     Donis turned slowly around, dreading the site of the Neopet he knew stood behind him. Shivers went down his spine as he saw the red Krawk he had seen in Zar's memory standing on the other side of the bars.

     "Vagio," he whispered.

To be continued...

 
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Other Episodes


» The Lost King of Geraptiku: Part One
» The Lost King of Geraptiku: Part Two
» The Lost King of Geraptiku: Part Three
» The Lost King of Geraptiku: Part Four
» The Lost King of Geraptiku: Part Six



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