The Lion King 3, a new generation

Chapter 1, a choice

The sun is setting on pride rock as an old king and queen walk down the winding path. It is Simba and Nala who are now leaving as Kovu and Kiara take over. Simba is still his golden color but his fur has faded a little, and Nala looks weary. Above, Kovu and Kiara stand on the peak watching as they leave.

"Kiara," Simba quickly roared up to her, "remember, whenever you need us, just look to the stars. We will always be there for you."

"I know dad, and I will always remember you…" she replied with a tear in her eye. This would be the last time that they ever saw them, the sun was setting on their lives, and so they left as is accustomed.

"It will be ok Kiara," Kovu reassured her as she burst into tears, "I'm still here for you."

She glanced up at him, happy he was there, but she had something to tell him and didn't know how or when. Should I tell him now? She thought. No, I will tell him tonight though.

After the sun set, they went into the royal cave to sleep.

"Kovu…I have something to tell you," Kiara slowly started

"What is it?" he replied, although he thought he already knew and it was making his stomach turn.

"…Were going to have a cub Kovu!" she burst out with excitement, but then saw the look on his face. He hadn't planned on having a cub, and he didn't know how to be a father, he didn't even have one as a cub.

He quickly recovered though seeing her worry, "Oh! Uh great! Sorry if I seem a bit off, uh, it's been a long day what with the ceremony and all… I'm real tired, but that's great! Well I'm going to get some rest, we'll talk more about this tomorrow." So he plopped down and tried to sleep.

The next morning Kovu got up before everyone else and crept out of the royal cave. He walked down to the waterhole to think things over.

"What am I going to do?" he said aloud to himself, "I don't know how to be a father, but I can't let Kiara down either…ugh!"

He took a step forward to get a drink but slipped and fell in.

"So deez eez ow da keeng plans to deal wit ees problems eh? Sweemin een da water hole?" A voice said, startling Kovu.

"What the! Oh. Hi Rafiki. I fell in, I didn't mean to. But what should I do! I don't know how to be a dad!" he said, startled.

Rafiki was the wise baboon shaman of pride rock, but he didn't always make sense when he spoke, his words were… odd. "Ahhhh so deez eez de problem. Hmmm well ol Rafiki tinks dat chu should start learnin ow to be a fadda, or chu gonna ave some problems. An chu are not alone, Kovu, Simba ad de same eesue you are avin now. Ee deent know ow to be a fadda eitha. But eet worked out een da end." He said, and then he was gone.

Kovu thought about all Rafiki said, and thought hard the whole way home. Maybe he is right…. He thought, But what if I fail our cub… but if I'm not there for him then I also failed it in that way… I think I will stay… maybe…

He finally arrived home just in time to see everyone waking up. He needed to talk to Kiara.

"Kiara, can I talk to you a sec?"

"Sure Kovu, what's up?" she replied.

I gotta tell her…. "When you told me you were pregnant, I was obviously happy, but I'm scared Kiara, I don't know how to be a father…and I don't want to fail our cub…or you…"

"I'm sure you will do just fine. My father didn't know what to do either, but he managed. You're a great king and I'm sure you will be a great dad, don't worry you will figure it out. I promise." She said, then she licked him and went to join the other lionesses for breakfast.

He looked after her thinking to himself. She's right. I can do this. I will, and I will stay with her through it all. And then he went to join everyone as well.

Chapter 2, the birth of two brothers

It is early afternoon, and all the animals have gathered around pride rock to see the new cub. Rafiki lifts the cub into the air and the kingdom bows and whoops and yells. Handing the cub to its father, he grabs another cub and lifts it into the air. He then hands this cub to its father as well. The presentation is done and they disperse again.

The father of the cubs is a dark lion, he is the king, his name is Kovu. He gives Rafiki a hug and takes the cubs back to his mate, a light lioness, she is queen and her name is Kiara.

"They are both boys Kiara," Kovu says as he lays the small cubs in their mother's paws, "what should we name them?"

"Hmmm… how about Baakir for the first born?" she said while cleaning the cub.

Kovu thought for a moment then replied, "Sounds good to me." And nuzzled Kiara and Baakir. "Now, what should we name the other one?"

She thought for a moment. "Well I named the first one, why don't you name the younger one."

"Ok… I like the name Kato." He said almost instantly. Obviously Kovu had given this a lot of thought. He then nuzzled Kiara, Baakir and Kato.

"I think that is a good name. I wonder which will be king." She said now cleaning Kato.

"I don't want to have to choose. Oh well, we don't have to decide now, do we now?" Kovu said almost playfully to his two sons who looked at him in amazement.

Baakir was a pitch black cub with pale gray eyes. He had small hairs growing on his head that was oddly a light tan color. Kato was a dark brown color but had light streaks through it. He had no sign of an early mane yet, and his eyes are a deep blue. Kato was a little bigger than Baakir, but not very noticeably. After caring for the cubs all day, Kovu, Kiara, and the two small cubs went to sleep in the royal cave.

Chapter 3, young love

It is early morning at pride rock, and two cubs come bounding out of the royal cave. One is completely black aside from the light tan tuft of an early mane on his head, and has light bluish green eyes. His name is Baakir, the older one of two princes of pride rock. The other cub is brown with light yellow and almost white streaks in his fur. His eyes are still the dark deep blue they were when he was a baby, and he too has developed a tuft of an early mane. His is a brownish orange color. This cubs name is Kato, and he is the younger prince. The two were only born minutes apart, and even though Baakir is older, Kato looks like he is many years older than him. A large dark lion follows the cubs slowly out of the cave, he is the king named Kovu. His mate, Kiara, who is also the queen, remains sleeping. He observes his sons, noticing that Kato is a bit larger and more muscular than his older brother.

"Come on dad! You gotta show us the kingdom! You promised!" the two cubs say almost in perfect unison.

"I'm coming, I just have to wake up all the way, head up to the point and I'll be there soon, just be careful." Kovu says groggily, and watches as the two race up the path. He finally manages to make his feet move and gets to the top where Kato and Baakir are waiting.

"Everything the light touches, is our kingdom. When the sun sets on my time, it will rise on one of yours, and one of you will be king." He tells his sons who are sitting on either side of him looking out on their kingdom in awe.

"Hey dad, which one of us is gonna be king?" Baakir asks suddenly.

"Your mother and I have not decided yet. I think that it will be easier when you are a bit older and maybe have mates." Kovu tells him.

"Well that's not fair! We should both get to be king!" he objects.

"Yes it is Baakir, we may not understand why yet, but it is. I trust dad." Kato says calmly. He is much more understanding and more patient than his brother.

"Your brother is right. You will understand one day. Well that's all for your lessons today, you guys can go play so long as you don't go any farther than the water hole and you stay together. I love you both, now go have fun." Kovu says to them as he lies down to look over the kingdom making sure that the water hole is within sight.

"Love you too dad, thanks bye!" they both shout as they bound down the path.

Kiara walks up to Kovu now for she just woke up. "See, I told you, you would be a good dad. Are you sure they are ok by themselves though?" she said, nuzzling him.

"I can see them from here and so can everyone else. I think they're fine." He said reassuringly. Then he licked her nose playfully and she lies down next to him watching their sons run off to play.

"Can you believe dad let us off on our own Kato?" Baakir asked as they slow to a walk and sit under a tree.

"Yeah because were older now, and he can trust us." Kato replies looking around as he hears a bush rustle. Just the wind I guess, he thinks to himself.

"Be right back Kato, I'm gonna get a drink. You can see me from here so technically were still together." Baakir says to him and trots off to the water.

Kato nods and lies on his back to stare up at the sky. Then he hears the bush rustling again and flips onto all fours. This time he sees a gray tail sticking up out of it, and pounces.

"Hey! Lemme up! Who do you think you are pouncing on a girl trying to catch her lunch!" the lioness says annoyed that the field mouse she was trying to catch got away.

"Oh… I'm real sorry, you just scared me and I thought you were sneaking up on me…. I didn't mean to…honest…." He stammers, observing this new lioness. She is a grayish color with a black line running all the way down her back and up her tail. Her eyes are cloudy green and her left eye is outlined with black fur. He then notes that she looks as if she hasn't eaten in weeks.

"I'm sorry I didn't mean to be so rude… my pride abandoned me about a month ago and I don't know how to hunt so I have had nothing to eat…" she trails off as she looks at the ground almost shamefully.

"It's ok, really, I should have been more careful. I didn't hurt you did I?" he says feeling really bad about pouncing on her. Just then Baakir comes back.

"Hey I'm back. Who's this? She isn't from our pride." Baakir says to Kato. Kato answers all his questions but then realizes that he doesn't know her name.

"Wow I forgot my manners, I'm Kato, and this is my brother, Baakir, we are the princes of pride rock. What's your name?" he says trying to be polite. He finds this strange lioness beautiful despite her bony state.

"Oh it seems I have forgotten my manners as well, my name is Zola, and I was part of a wandering tribe. Did you say you were princes? That's so cool! What's it like huh?" Zola said excitedly.

"It's fun but kinda boring. Our parents are super nice though, they are the king and queen." Baakir perks up, eager to please Zola. He thought of her in a different way than Kato though, so he just wanted to be friends.

"Hey I have an idea! Zola why don't you come live with us! It's almost dinner time and you could eat with us! What do you think?" Kato perked up, hoping to get to be around Zola all the time.

She looked a bit cautious at first but then said, "Are you sure that's ok? I mean I would love to but I don't want to intrude…."

"Here, we'll walk with you, come on." Kato replied, and asked Baakir to go tell their parents once they got close so that they didn't get too mad.

Wow Kato is really strong Zola thought to herself as she walked with him, and she found him to be very handsome. No one talked the whole way home, they were too busy thinking. The funny part was, they were thinking about each other.

Chapter 4, hunting trip

"Hey dad." Baakir said casually to start the conversation to ask about him and Kato's new friend.

"Hey son, where is your brother?" Kovu said to him looking a little alarmed.

"He is right on the path, but before he comes up here I have to ask you something." He said still trying to hide his excitement.

"Hmm, alright then, what is it you want?" Kovu said, playing along.

"Well…." And so Baakir explained everything about them meeting Zola and how they wanted her to stay and why she didn't have a pride of her own. After everything, Kovu finally agreed and Baakir called for Kato to bring Zola up.

"Dad," Kato started, "this is Zola, our new friend."

"Hello there Zola, my name is Kovu, I am king of this pride, and it's a pleasure to meet you." He replied, being as nice as possible because he knew that look in Kato's eye. It was the same one he had when he fell in love with Kiara.

"No, it is MY pleasure to meet YOU Kovu. Thank you so much for letting me live here with your pride." Zola said trying to sound as proper as possible so that the king would like her.

"You're very proper for a lion your age, but we can talk more later, its time to eat so follow Kato and Baakir to the rest of the pride for dinner." He said chuckling.

Kato quick gave his dad a hug and whispered in his ear, "thanks dad," And ran off with Baakir and Zola to dinner, Kovu grinning after them.

As they approached, Kiara walked up and met Zola as Kato and Baakir explained everything to their mother. She welcomed Zola to the pride and gave her a large section of meat to herself for they had caught more than enough today. After dinner, they all headed in to the royal cave to sleep.

"Good night Zola." Kato said to her before they headed in. He couldn't help just gazing at her; she was the most beautiful lion he had ever met.

"Good night, Kato." She said, and then she nuzzled him. "Thank you for bringing me here, you are a great friend."

Kato started to blush but nuzzled her back. "It was nothing, really, now get some good sleep. Tomorrow my aunt Vitani is going to teach you how to hunt while my dad teaches me and Baakir how to hunt." He said, and then he went over by Baakir and went to sleep, only after he made sure Zola had fell asleep as well.

The next morning, Vitani was up before everyone, and was stretching out before she took Zola out to hunt. She had only known Zola one day but she already had accepted her as family, so she was quite excited about having someone she could teach how to hunt. To her surprise, she turned around to see Zola waking up and heading towards her.

"Hey Zola, why are you up so early?" Vitani asked her.

"Oh hey Vitani, I didn't know anyone else would be up, I like to get up this early, its relaxing." She replied, a little startled to see someone else awake.

"Haha, you sound like me when I was your age. Well, since you're up, do you want to just get your hunting lessons over with?" She asked, actually enjoying the company for once.

"Sure, but you might want to tell king Kovu where we are just in case." Zola said with excitement.

So after Vitani quickly told Kovu and Kiara that they were going hunting, she and Zola bounded off to the savannah.

"Ok Zola, see those antelope? We're going to try and get one alright? Ok, so, first, stay low to the ground, and feel the earth under your paws so it doesn't move. Slow your breathing… keep an eye on your target….now!" Vitani instructed and Zola leaped into the air, tackling a large antelope.

"Good! Now quick bite its neck and kill it so it can't get away!" Vitani yelled in excitement as the child caught something on her first try, and she had been the one to teach her.

Zola did as instructed and killed the creature. It was a large male antelope with plenty of meat for about half the pride. She looked up at Vitani and gave her a big cheesy grin, and they headed home, Vitani carrying the kill.

When they got back everyone was awake but only just. Vitani bragged on and on about how Zola caught it on her first try and everyone cheered. Zola was blushing because of all the attention but she turned around to see Kato standing there grinning at her. She grinned back at him but had to go help bring her antelope to the slab of stone that served as the table. It turned out that it was enough for the whole pride, and everyone enjoyed themselves.

After breakfast, Kovu took Kato and Baakir out hunting, who also returned successful with two large zebra which they saved until dinner. It was still only noon and Kato wanted to go play, so he asked his dad if he and Zola could go play as long as they didn't go passed the water hole, and he let them. Baakir was tired from chasing zebra, so he stayed behind and took a nap, while Kato and Zola were finally alone together.

Chapter 5, the young years

"Haha, I'm glad your dad let us go out to play by ourselves." Zola said, thinking about how great it was to be alone with Kato. She noticed that he had been getting a little taller and longer, and more muscular.

"I know, I like being with you…" he said almost on accident, and started blushing.

"Ha… I like being with you too Kato…" she said, blushing as well.

For a few moments they just looked at each other, but then Kato took a step towards Zola and licked her cheek.

"I really like you Zola. I think I might love you…" he said as she nuzzled him. They went down by the water hole under the tree where they met and just lay there, Zola in Kato's arms. She fell asleep, and Kato was just looking at her when he noticed scars on her neck, they were claw marks. Zola suddenly woke up and saw him looking at the scars, and she quickly rolled over and covered them.

"Zola, it's ok, you don't have to hide your scars from me because I think you are beautiful either way. But… can I ask how you got them?" He said cautiously, he was worried about her.

"Well… about a year ago… I was taken by a lion who was an outsider… he said his son needed a mate. When I saw that his son was so much older than me, I bit the lion who took me and started to run, but not before he had managed to claw my neck. A crazy baboon saved me when I passed out… I haven't ever told anyone… but I, I feel safe around you. I trust you." Zola told Kato, and then she nuzzled him as she started to cry.

"I…I'm sorry. Don't worry, I will always be here and I will protect you from anything. I promise." Kato said, nuzzling her back.

A while later they headed back to pride rock with their tales intertwined. They had missed dinner, but they didn't care. Kovu had been watching them so he was not mad but told them both to go to bed. Kato licked Zola and went to bed, and she did the same. They both had dreams of each other that night.

Chapter 6, a decision

A few years had passed since Zola had come to live with the royal family at pride rock, and she had grown even more beautiful. She had grown stronger and taller too as well as longer. There was still a black line that ran all the way down her back and up her tail as well. Kato had grown very strong and was a very handsome lion with many muscles. His eyes were the same deep blue as ever, and his fur was a little lighter brown but still had the streaks of yellow and white in it. His mane was getting longer, but it was not quite fully grown and was still a brownish orange color. Baakir too had gotten taller and longer and stronger. He was still smaller than Kato though. His fur was still pitch black but his eyes had changed to a bright green color, while his mane remained a very light tan. His mane was almost full grown, but not quite yet.

"Kiara I don't want to have to choose which one of our sons will be king." Kovu said in a hushed voice to his mate.

"Well we have to decide. I think it should be Kato. He is stronger, more patient, and has a mate. Baakir is still too hasty and his muscles are not fully developed, and he has not met a mate. What do you think?" Kiara replied almost feeling bad about what she had said about Baakir.

"Well… I never wanted to decide but deep down I have always wanted Kato to be king, he is more respectful as well… Yes. It will be Kato. I will go tell them now." Kovu said as he headed out to find his sons.

The two lions were sitting on the point of pride rock talking about Zola when Kovu came up behind them.

"Kato, Baakir, your mother and I have decided which of you to make king. Kato will be king, and Zola as his queen. The wedding for them is tomorrow. I never wanted to have to choose, but this is what we have decided. We still love you both. Oh, and I think your mother had something to tell all of us so please, meet us in the cave." Kovu told them. He almost couldn't bear to look at Baakir, he was crushed. So, Kovu stalked off to the cave.

As he looked back, he saw Kato hug his brother and whisper something in his ear which seemed to perk Baakir's attitude a little.

When they arrived at the cave, Kato noticed that his mom's stomach was larger than normal, and knew what she was going to tell them.

"Kato, Baakir, Kovu, I have an announcement. I am pregnant again. This will be my last cub, and Kovu and I are getting old. I don't think we will be able to be around all through its life, and I would like to entrust it to Baakir. You are both almost adults, and have the proper skills to take care of a child. The only thing is that if I don't make it until it can feed by itself, Zola or one of the other lionesses will need to feed it." Kiara said weakly. She was right, they were old, and she knew that she was most likely going to die in child birth. She then told everyone that her and Kovu would be leaving to the oasis of kings the next day after the marriage of Kato and Zola, but did not tell anyone else about the child. It was to be kept a secret that it was an heir to the thrown if something should happen.

Chapter 7, a marriage and a birth

It was noon, and all the animals in the kingdom were once more gathered around pride rock. Two lions moved to the peak of pride rock, and roared with the old king and queen. The two that had come up next to the old king and queen are Kato and Zola, and Kovu and Kiara are next to them, old and frail. They hug the new king and queen goodbye, along with their other son, Baakir, and head to the oasis of kings. The animals scatter once more.

"I can't believe that we are the new king and queen." Kato says to Zola as she licks him.

"Me either, but I'm happy I'm with you." She replies, smiling.

A few weeks pass, and everything in the pride lands is going well under the new king and queen, and so is everything in the oasis.

"The baby is coming, soon Kovu." Kiara says through struggled breaths. Rafiki is there and delivers the child, Kiara dies in childbirth.

"KIARA!" Kovu yells crying, but then he collapses next to her. The old king and queen have passed. Rafiki takes the newborn cub to pride rock in the middle of the night, and gives it to Baakir. Rafiki then leaves and lets Baakir decide the name for the cub. It is a girl.

"I will name you…Tabia. Shhh, it's alright, sleep now, little Tabia." Baakir says, nuzzling the little cub. It is an odd cub because it is completely white, except for its underside. From under her chin all the way up the under of her tail is black.

The next morning Kato and Zola awake to find Baakir taking care of the little one. Kato knows now that his parents are dead and that the cub is his sister. He nuzzles Tabia and heads out to breakfast to find one of the lionesses that is pregnant. Her name is Zahra, and Kato asks her if she would be willing to feed the cub that will be living with them until it is old enough. She agrees.

Three years have gone by since Tabia came to live with the pride. Kato, Zola, and Baakir are all fully grown now. The two boys' manes are full and beautiful, and Zola's stomach is getting larger. The three adults and Tabia sit atop the peak and roar out to tell the kingdom that in a few months, they will have an heir.