Losing Grip

Ch 7

Artie wondered if his friend was just going to tell Fiona about what Zeke was planning but knew he didn't want to worry her or the triplets. He then saw Merlin appear. He looked serious.

"What's wrong? Is it to do with the war Zeke's planning?" he asked him. "Yes it is. I need you and Shrek to come with me at once." He answered him. He then found Shrek outside. He looked like he hadn't gotten much sleep last night. "What's going on?" he asked Artie. "Merlin's here. He wants to see the both of us. It's to do with Zeke." Artie replied softly. Shrek got to his feet and followed him into the portal Merlin had created using his magic. "I hope we can stop Zeke before this war of his begins and lives are lost. If the war starts, I won't let Fiona or the kids get hurt. I'll die to make sure they're alive." He thought as the portal closed… They came out at Merlin's shack at the other end. Artie watched as the wizard like ogres were casting some sort of spell. "What're they doing?" he asked Merlin. "They're casting a spell to contain Zeke in a new prison but we need to take him down before he starts his ultimate battle." he answered gravely.

Shrek understood. Artie noticed he was very silent. "Let me guess Zeke's plan has you worried?" he told him. He nodded in reply. "I've a feeling I know where he is. He's in the underground catacombs where most of the ogres that people fear meet. We've gotta go there and stop him any way possible." he said to him quietly. "Yes! That's where our tracking spell revealed he is. You can still get them to trust you still?" Merlin replied as he got an idea. "Oh aye they trust me. Zeke's forcing me to help him but I can double cross him. He's no clue what I'm doing." Shrek answered.

"Good. Then you and Artie go down there and stall until we get there and use our spell to imprison him." Merlin said. Artie watched as his ogre friend put on his skateboarding gear and got onto his skateboard. "Let's have some fun taking down Zeke skater style!" Shrek told him. Artie smiled and did the same. They then sped off towards the town square of Far, Far Away but stopped at the steps that marked the entrance to the catacombs. They could hear Zeke talk to the other ogres about his plan as they stepped onto the dark ground. Artie watched as his ogre friend went to join Zeke but he stopped him. "What do you think you're doing? He'll make you fight in his war." he asked him. "Don't worry Artie I won't fight. Besides Zeke still thinks I'm helping him so I'm going to play along but then when Merlin shows up, we'll take care of them, okay?" he explained to him. Artie nodded. Zeke smiled when he saw Shrek. "Ah you're here! I trust nobody followed you here?" he said to him. "Nobody followed me here, okay?" Shrek replied as Zeke gave him a powerful cross bow. He looked back and saw Artie hiding behind a boulder so Zeke wouldn't see him.

"I won't use it to hurt innocent lives Artie. You know me." he whispered softly. The other ogres had guns, rocket launchers and other powerful weapons. Fiona was worried. Artie and her husband had been gone for a long time. She had no idea what was going on. But Shrek's thoughts were broken by Artie yelling. Zeke had found the almond haired teen. "Let him go!" he told Zeke but he cackled at Shrek's protest. "Why should I? It's humans that make us hide down here because of their damn assumptions. You wanna destroy what I'm doing by saving this loser?" he told him handing him a sword. Shrek knew what Zeke wanted him to do with this. "I'm sorry Zeke. I won't hurt my friend." Shrek told him bravely but Zeke punched and beat him up. This made Artie angry. He then kicked Zeke in the back and made him fall to the ground. "This loser is not taking crap from you Zeke. You just hurt my friend for defending me but I know what's up with you, why're you're starting this battle. You're Farquaad's son. He rejected you when he found out his wife gad given birth to an ogre. That's why he wants to shed the lives of innocent ogres and humans as revenge to the man who hated him." he explained to Shrek as he helped him up. Shrek watched as Artie took the sword from him and approach Zeke.

Artie was about to do something he'd regret but dropped it at the last minute. "I don't understand. Why don't you wanna slay me?" Zeke asked him confused. "I didn't do it because that would just confirm what you've just said was true. But it's not. Most humans would welcome you guys with open arms. Besides I'm working on a policy to protect your kind from hunters. I believe we could live in harmony." he answered him as he got rid of the sword. The other ogres then dropped their weapons. Shrek smiled at their decision. "I think they've got your back." he told him. Merlin then showed up with the wizardly ogres. Zeke growled in anger and charged Merlin with the sword but Shrek jumped in to protect him but took the blade hit him in the arm. He wasn't that hurt by it but his arm was broken and pain throbbed through it. "Thanks for that. I wouldn't like to imagine what would've happened if you hadn't became a shield. Let me put him away so nobody can be hurt by him again." he told him.

Shrek understood as he and Artie got out of the catacombs with the other ogres. They watched as a bright light came from within but vanished. "I hope Merlin's okay." Artie thought but his fears were put to rest when the wizard appeared from the catacombs. "Is Zeke gone?" Shrek asked him. "Yes he is. The two of you showed great friendship down there. It saved the kingdom and others of both species." he replied to them. Artie then watched as he vanished and the two of them went back to the swamp,,,