Pretty skidded to an abrupt halt. A crowd had gathered around the center of the town. With a quick look around Pretty spotted her father and brothers who apparently returned from the Kerrek March. She ran over to them clutching a stitch in her side.
"W-what's going on?" she panted. Her father pointed with worry in his eyes.
Pretty followed his gesture and noticed something for the first time. A giant cloud of dust had formed during the explosion. But that wasn't the cause for concern. Within the cloud came muffled shouts. The crowd backed up.
Suddenly three figures stumbled out. They where all dressed in turquoise robes that where now brown with dirt. Their faces where mostly covered by hoods.
"Nice going Mike! 'Oh, we'll use the Floo Powder, you say! A fat lot of good that did!" shouted one.
"Well some people need to work on their entrances Matt! Now look at my beautiful robe! This is gonna cost a fortune!" retorted another. The third one stepped between them and held out his hands. "Both of you settle down. We must work together to accomplish this goal," he said calmly. "Who asked you, Jonathan." Mike and Matt said glumly.
"Well before you two fight anymore we need to find if we are in the right…" Jonathan's voice trailed off as he looked around at the gawking peasants.
The three of them straightened up and suddenly took on a very professional and serious quality.
"Greetings, Peasants of the Kingdom of Peasantry." Mike said mysteriously.
"We bring news from the Burninator" continued Matt. The peasants murmured in fear and astonishment. Matt held up his hand for silence. "Trogdor is becoming bored. Yes, bored. Even rampaging dragons become bored after a while. And it is dangerous for you folks if he becomes bored…"
"Apathetic" added Mike
"Fed up" suggested Jonathan.
"…Right. All of those things" continued Matt. "He wants an opponent who can prove worthy to stand against him." There were shocked outcries amongst the peasants.
"So this Kingdom of Peasantry will hold a tournament. Whoever wins will challenge Trogdor." Matt finished. The other two Keepers looked at him with disgust. "You call that delivering a suspenseful speech? It sounded like you where reciting a Karaoke competition." Mike said crossly.
"Hey shut your gob Mike."
"You should have let me talk."
"You should have covered your head in a paper bag."
"What kind of come back was that?!"
"I'll show you come back!"
"Guys! GUYS!" Jonathan shouted, attempting to break up the squabble.
Meanwhile the peasants quiet muttering became a full-throated roar. Everyone was arguing in shock and panic as the message from the Burninator registered in their minds. Pretty was the only person who remained silent. She pushed her way through the crowd to where the Keepers stood. They where still fighting amongst themselves.
"Mike NO spells! That's playing dirty!" Matt shouted ducking a purple blast that came from Mike's hands. Jonathan had given up trying to stop the fight and was now standing with a hand over his face. Pretty stepped up to him and tentatively tugged his sleeve.
"Excuse me sir?" she asked. Jonathan looked at her, although she couldn't be sure because his hood shrouded his face.
"Yes peasant? What is it?" he said wearily. Pretty felt her heart thudding in nervousness but remained where she was.
"I was wondering…that is to say…well…can I enter the competition?" she inquired softly. Jonathan seemed to look at her with new interest. He remained silent for a moment then answered. "I'm not going to say "no" like any other adult would do. It is a wise choice but not the best one," he said mysteriously.
Pretty raised an eyebrow. "So…is that a yes?" she asked. Jonathan was slightly disappointed she didn't listen to his sagely advice, but nodded. Pretty continued, "See I'm friends with Ned and he agreed to train me…"
"Ned! Where is he? I must say hello to him!" Jonathan cried. "Right here Jonathan" said Ned who was suddenly standing behind Pretty. The other two Keepers stopped quarreling.
"It's so great to see you Ned!" said Matt who was turned into a newt by Mike. Ned bent down and picked him up. "Are you guys fighting again? You never change." Ned sighed.
Mike muttered something that sounded like "he started it."
"I heard that!" Matt shouted from Ned's hand. Jonathan embraced Ned like an old friend. "How are you, my boy?" he asked.
"As good as it can get for a peasant living in a town that's always under threat of burnination." Said Ned truthfully. Pretty didn't want to be rude but she was growing impatient. "Ned, you said you would help me enter the competition," she reminded him.
"I did?" Nat said, confused. She glared at him. "OHHHH yeah, I did. Ummm…." Jonathan suddenly yanked him by the collar of his shirt and turned to Pretty. "If you'll excuse us for a minute." Pretty shrugged and watched Jonathan drag Ned into the crowd.
"Please pardon my French, what in the schnikies where you thinking?" shouted Jonathan angrily to Ned. He winced but answered in a calm voice. "She's the one who can save us."
"But what if she's not?" Jonathan said quietly. "Ned, I admire the faith you have in her but if you're wrong you'll be giving the girl a one way ticket to burnination."
"I know that already! I've thought and thought about it! But I just know she's the one!" Ned said in exasperation.
"Well there's only one way to find out," said Jon.
"Pull a sword from a stone?" suggested Ned.
"No, don't be stupid. Anyone can do that. She needs to…" He looked around and motioned Ned closer. " Make Trogdor a pizza."
"Look, we all know Trogdor is a vegetarian. His favorite dish is pizza. But whenever Mike, Matt or myself deliver him a pizza it's 'to crusty' or 'needs more grease'. According to the prophecy …"
"There's a prophecy pizza? Since when was there a prophecy about pizza?!" Ned cried incredulously.
The Keeper continued, totally ignoring him. "It says that whoever can make the perfect pizza for Trogdor is the one who can save Peasantry."
Jonathan's Pez-Watch suddenly started beeping. "Ah, we need to wrap this up." He walked back to Mike and Matt and turned to the crowd. Matt had turned back into a human and was brushing himself off with dignity. He held up a hand for silence from the crowdwhich hegot almost immediately. "Citizens of Peasantry. Our time grows short! We will be back on the day of the competition. May the uh, most wrangling person win!"
Jonathan and Mike rolled their eyes.
Suddenly the three Keepers disappeared in a puff of green smoke making everyone cough and splutter. Finally when the smoke cleared they where nowhere to be seen.
Ned turned to Pretty and clapped his hands together. "So...do you know how to make a pizza?"
Continued in Chapter 5
Notes: Mike Matt and Jonathan are in NO WAY supposed to be the real people. I thought it would be funny to use their names. Also, sorry about the big update gap. I will try to update faster next time. Don't worry! Action and Adventure soon! And also I lovey the reviewy.