The Kiko Lake War: Part One
It was a bright day. Brian the blue Bruce waddled outside and felt glad to smell the early dew on the grass. It was nice to get out of the house for once. He ran across the field and did cartwheels and summersaults all the way. He ran all the way across the meadow, then hopped over the gate and into a forest of green tall trees. It was nice and shady there. Brian stopped to catch his breath and sat down beside a tree in the shade. He reached in his waistcoat pocket and pulled out the bar of caramel chocolate that Mother had given him earlier. It was mushy and melted from roasting in the heat of his pocket. But it was all the same to Brian. It tasted sweet and sticky; and that was really bliss.
Brian thought it was nice to be alone. He decided to get up and walk on through the forest to see what he would find.
After a while Brian left the forest and suddenly began to smell water. OK, maybe water doesn’t have a smell, but it was a clear, fresh smell. Brian loved basking in a pool of water, especially on a hot day. He went on a bit and soon spotted a lake not far off. Three building were around it, the one in the middle was rather big, the other two not quite as big. Brian soon identified it as a place he had seen on postcards and maps but had never actually been to: Kiko Lake.
Brian hugged himself with glee. Hooray! He could go for a little swim.
Brian approached the lake and jumped in-- but it was very shallow. So Brian just waded his way through it slowly. And how beautifully cool it was! Brian swam further; the water was calm and all was quiet. It was a wonderful scene for Brian.
But suddenly a huge green Skeith burst out of the big building, shouting at Brian with a furious look on his face.
Brian flinched. The Skeith ignored the fact that he was in water and jumped into the lake, still wearing his clothes!
Brian shrieked. He ran out of the lake. Everyone in Neopia knew that Skeiths were dangerous creatures and were not to be messed with. And an angry Skeith was very bad indeed! Brian was only a child, and he was petrified.
“WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE?!” screamed the Skeith. “GET OUT OF THE LAKE, NOW! DON’T YOU KNOW THIS IS PRIVATE PROPERTY?”
Brian felt like he would burst into tears. “I’m... sorry! I didn’t know! This is the first time I’ve ever been to Kiko Lake! I swear!”
“Don’t you know to ask permission?!” demanded the Skeith, calming down a bit now.
“I do, I do!” cried Brian. “But I swear... I had no idea.”
“In this town, Bruces aren’t allowed,” said the Skeith, “This is Kiko Lake. No Bruces, no Usuls, no Kikos...”
“No Kikos?” repeated Brian. “But this is Kiko Lake. Surely Kikos are allowed!”
“Of course not,” grunted the Skeith. “Only Skeiths are allowed in Kiko Lake, idiot. Don’t you know the story of this place?”
“Like I said,” said the young Bruce, “I’ve never been here before. How am I supposed to know the story?”
The Skeith sighed and waddled out of the water. He sat on the bank, next to Brian.
“Shall I tell you it?” he asked.
“Oh, yes please.” Brian smiled. “I would love a story. Please tell me it.”
“But of course,” said the Skeith. “I know this story like the back of my hand. Why, you ask? Because I fought in the Kiko Lake War.”
“The Kiko Lake War?” said Brian, “There was a war?”
“Well, yes,” said the Skeith, “Long ago, Skeiths were an unreasonable, tough kind. They were terrible, really they were. And I’ll tell the truth, I’ll admit that I was just as bad too. One day we just decided that we’d gang up on everybody because we thought we were so brilliant and prepared. We tried to conquer Tyrannia, but they had dinosaurs and warriors that thrashed us immediately. So we left.
“Next we made our way to Neopia Central. Obviously, the capital city was not having it. They got their best warriors and the Defenders to rid us of Neopia Central. Most of the Skeiths were giving up hope and only a few were left, and one of them was me.
“We were hopeless. We felt that all the locations in Neopia would defeat us like that. Then an elderly wise Skeith suggested Kiko Lake, the most innocent place in Neopia. He pointed out that Kikos were the most timid, weakest species of Neopets. It would be easy to defeat the Kikos. So we were all ready to fight.
“Obviously, we herded them all out straight away. We took them down and they surrendered immediately. They got a choice to leave or to stay and be bossed around by us Skeiths. And all of them left without even a moment to hesitate.”
Brian blinked. “Why is it called Kiko Lake then? Why not Skeith Lake?”
“The Defenders”, said the Skeith, “pointed out that we had no right to change the name of Kiko Lake. Besides, all the maps would be wrong and people would never get used to it. So it stayed Kiko Lake.”
“I think it was mean of you to kick the poor Kikos out of their home,” said Brian.
“That’s your opinion. I don’t agree,” said the Skeith. “Anyway, you’d better scram, now, before Harold sees you.”
“Who’s Harold?” asked Brian.
“The Chief,” said the Skeith. “He’s in charge of everything in Kiko Lake. So vamoose or I’ll tell him. And it’s not a pretty sight when Harold is angry.”
Brian immediately got up. “Fine. I’ll leave. But let me tell you... the Kikos belong here. This is where most of ‘em live. And I don’t care who I have to face... even this Harold of yours... I’m bringing the Kikos back.”
“Ha! Dream on, kid,” sneered the Skeith, scornfully. “Bye now. And don’t come back!”
“We’ll see,” muttered Brian, under his breath, “We’ll very much so see...”
Brian disappeared from the Skeith’s sight and wandered on his chubby little legs back home. He went inside his brown small hut which he and his mother lived in. His mother, who was also a blue Bruce, was in the kitchen, making lunch.
“Where have you been, Bri?” asked Mother.
“Out for a walk,” replied Brian, “I went to Kiko Lake.”
“Oh dear!” exclaimed Mother, almost dropping her wooden spoon. “Did the Skeiths yell at you?”
“One did,” said Brian, “but then I told him that I’ve never been to Kiko Lake before, so he told me the story.”
“You mean you didn’t already know it?” asked Mother.
Brian shook his head.
“Really? Well, someone ought to have.” Mother shrugged. “But I wouldn’t imagine a Skeith, of all people, would tell you it.”
“Why not?” said Brian.
“Because, Bri,” said Mother, “nowadays most Skeiths aren’t proud of what they did to the Kikos. I know I wouldn’t be.”
“This lad seemed to be proud,” said Brian. “But no bother. What’s cooking?”
“Your favourite.” Mother smiled. “Vegetable soup with a side of bread and chicken.”
Brian licked his lips. “Yum, yum!”
Mother placed the vegetable soup on the table and Brian ate it all up. Then he went back on to the subject of the Kikos.
“You know Lucy-Ann Kiko?” he asked. “The old yellow Kiko who lives down the road?”
“Yes, I do,” replied Mother.
“Was she around when the Kiko Lake War started?” asked Brian.
“Of course.” Mother grinned. “The Kiko Lake War was very recent, Bri. Even your friend, Irvin Kiko, was around to see the Kiko Lake War. Well, he was a baby when it started, but all the same he was around. I doubt he remembers it, though.”
“Oh!” said Brian. “I didn’t know that. Then there’s still hope!”
“Still hope for what?” asked Mother, amused by his childish ways.
“Still hope for the Kikos!” cried Brian. “I can start another war against the Skeiths with the Kikos and let them live where they belong without being bossed around!”
“You’ll never be able to do that,” said Mother, “And besides, I don’t want you starting a war.”
“Oh, why not?” whined Brian.
“Because,” Mother frowned, “war is no place for a child.”
“What if I don’t fight in it?” pleaded Brian. “What if I just organise it? That would be OK, right?”
“Well, I don’t know...” said Mother, scratching her head. “It’s still very dangerous...”
“It’s for the Kikos, Mum!” begged Brian. “Wouldn’t you like to be able to go back to Kiko Lake for a swim? Wouldn’t you like to stand up to the Skeiths? Wouldn’t you like the Kikos back where they belong?”
Mother thought for a moment. “Alright. But be careful!”
Brian grinned and ran to his mother, and gave her a big hug. “Thank you, Mum! Thank you!”
Mother beamed as she watched her only son run out of the house. “Now be careful...!”
“I will! I will!” she heard an excited voice yelling in the distance.
To be continued...