[A/N] Please note that the animals the girls called "Mamma", "Mother", "Father", "Granddaddy" etc. have real names like Sable. I just only mentioned the names of the lions because I was dead lazy of thinking of new names. But now the laziness hits me because I still have to think of new names…What a drag.
Chapter 11 Reunion
Another two weeks passed and the girls had increased their flying skills. Today was the day of the Great Ritual. Granddaddy and Grandmamma had told them about the big annual reunion of the main animal tribes. The Wolves, Bears, Monkeys, Turtles, Owls and Lions would meet at an open spot near the Owl's nest. There they would summon the ancestor dragons and ask them for a gift. The girls were terribly excited because, not only would they see their own families again but they would meet the other families and the ancestor dragons as well. Will especially was terribly nervous because she would meet her actual family. Granddaddy and Grandmamma were busy with the preparations and waiting for the guests (the ritual could only take place at sunset) so Eros took the five girls for a small flight.
'So… in a couple of hours we will be summoned.' Mieko said.
'I'm feeling pretty nervous.' Ayame admitted.
'You have no reason to be nervous.' Takako said. 'I mean, you don't have an awkward moment with Him.'
Xin Jing's look darkened when Ayame started to jump.
'Oh! I remember! Draganos contacted me two days ago…' she said before cowering under Xin Jing's gaze.
'What?' Natsuko said shocked. 'Why didn't you tell us?'
Ayame looked a little sheepishly.
'Uh… I forgot?' she said.
The four other dragons looked at her with amazement.
'You forgot?' Xin Jing said coldly. 'How could you forget?'
Ayame cowered again under her gaze.
'I was just so happy with our charge… I was just too distracted to tell you.'
Xin Jing sighed. She looked tiredly at Ayame.
'What did he say?' she asked.
'He asked if he could come and take the girls.' Ayame answered.
'And what did you say?' Natsuko asked.
Ayame shuffled with her front paws and looked kinda nervous.
'I…uhh… I said… uhh… That he could come around…uhm…now.'
'NOW?' the four other dragons yelled.
A knocking sound echoed through the palace and their caves. A man, who had brought W.I.T.C.H. to the palace, appeared.
'My ladies.' he said. 'A guest has appeared at the front door. Should I let him in?'
The four dragons looked at Xin-Jing. She glared one more time at Ayame before changing into her human appearance.
'Let him in, Jarvan.' she said.
'As you wish.'
Jarvan walked away while the other dragons followed Xin-Jing example. Each of them transformed into their human appearance.
'Mistresses.' a voice said.
The five women turned around and saw that Jarvan was back. Behind him was a mix between human and dragon standing. The Hybrid was standing behind Jarvan and he was a head taller than him. He had a silver dragon's head and some scales on his limbs but he was dressed in normal human clothes and his appearance itself was human as well. Ayame noticed him first and without a warning she ran towards him, hugging him.
'Draganos!' she said. 'It's so good to see you!'
Draganos returned the hug.
'Thank you Matsuki.' he said. 'It's good to see you as well.'
Ayame broke out of the hug and smiled at him.
'How many times do I have to tell you that you can call me by my first name?'
'It's only fitting to call a beautiful lady with her last name out of respect for her beauty.' he said slyly.
Ayame giggled at his words. The other women walked to the two.
'How are you doing, Draganos?' Mieko asked.
'Same old. Same old.' Draganos replied.
'Long time no see.' Takako said.
'Oh well… You know I was being busy with my new tasks and all.' he replied a little nervous.
'And how is your brother doing?' Natsuko asked. 'Last time we saw him he was a bit cranky because his spot as the Leader of the Grand Dragons was denied.'
Draganos looked a little dark.
'I'm afraid he is no longer on the side of good now.' he said with a heavy voice. 'He traveled to the Shadow Realm and tapped into the Dark Crystal's power. He's a dark Dragon now, who wants to take revenge and who tries to turn other Dragons to his side.'
The five women all gasped and clasped their hands in front of their mouths.
'Dragas? A dark Dragon?' Natsuko said with tears in her eyes.
Ayame hugged her as she silently cried. Draganos looked sadly at the ground before looking up again.
'Yes. But don't worry.' he said. 'I've got the feeling that all things will end well.'
He then turned to Xin-Jing. She hadn't said a thing since his arrival. He smiled awkwardly and slowly walked to her. He kneeled and took one of her hands and kissed it.
'Flattery isn't going to help you, you know.' Xin-Jing said a little cold.
'Trying doesn't hurt.' he replied.
The hand that he had kissed turned into a dragon claw and slapped him in the face. Even though there was a little heavy ambiance hanging around, the other women couldn't help but to giggle. Draganos was nursing his cheek while Xin-Jing turned her hand back to normal.
'And here I was thinking that we could settle this as two grown Dragons.' Draganos said.
'Be happy that we settle this as humans or else I would have bitten your head off.' Xin-Jing replied.
'Look, what is your problem?' Draganos asked a little annoyed.
'What my problem is?' Xin-Jing repeated angered. 'You don't know what my problem is?'
'No!' Draganos said annoyed. 'I only know that you're angry with me because how I left.'
'Maybe you should have used your intellect! Leaving while you only left a letter for me to read! And you dare to call yourself a Grand Dragon! More like a Grand Chicken!'
The two started a quarrel while Ayame, Natsuko, Takako and Mieko shook their heads.
'Those two are going to go at each other for some time.' Takako said with a sigh.
'I think we could better leave them alone and watch our charge.' Mieko proposed.
'I agree.' Natsuko and Ayame chorused.
When the four ancestor Dragons resumed their watch over their charge their eyes widened.
'You two! stop your bickering!' Ayame yelled. 'We've got bigger problems!'
Xin-Jing and Draganos stopped their bickering and hurried to the pool. They looked in it as well and their eyes widened. Their charge was being attacked. By vultures.
Of course this had to happen. We take a harmless flight and suddenly and out of nowhere these vultures attack us! If it were just two or three I wouldn't be so worried, or hurt. But us six versus at least twenty vultures? That's madness!
'Will!' I yelled. 'Dive!'
Will dove just in time to evade a vulture clawing at her. She responded by shooting some lightning from her hands at the nasty bird. It got hit and fell to the ground. She smiled at me before her eyes widened in terror.
'Eros! Behind you!' she yelled.
I turned around but I was too late. Two vultures flew at me and clawed me and pecked me. When they flew over I saw a fire ball and a water ball fly at them. Both got hit and descended as well.
'This is useless!' Cornelia yelled.
She summoned some vines to capture a vulture. Immediately two others appeared.
'For everyone of them we take down, two return!'
Right then the vultures stopped attacking.
'Why are you making it so difficult? We only want to help you! This was what you planned, right?' the ugliest vulture said. I guess that he's the head of this squadron.
I looked confused at the flock of birds as well as the girls. What, in the name of the ancestors, were they talking about? But before any of us could reply to this very weird message the head vulture shot a beam at me. I saw it too late and it hit me in my left wing. I screeched in pain and started to descend as well.
First these wacko birds attack us, then say something weird and now they attacked Eros in the same way we were attacking them! How can they use magic? I didn't think too long about that as I dove to try and catch Eros. Hay-Lin flew right beside me. Up above I could hear Cornelia demand.
'How did you do that?' she said.
I heard the vultures laugh.
'Don't act as if you don't know!' one of them said. 'You know very well that our, as well as your, Master gave these magical rings to us.'
My eyes widened. I heard Hay-Lin gasp in shock and I saw that Eros was looking dark.
'They're talking about William.' Eros growled weakly. 'But I'm sure that none of you have ever seen him.'
I felt a little awkward as I together with Hay-Lin managed to grab his wings. I mean I kinda saw in my dream…I think. We flew up again to face the vultures. As we did I could see the shocked looks on Taranee's, Cornelia's and Irma's faces. I also saw that every vulture had a small ring around its claw.
'We've never seen William and he isn't our master!' Irma yelled angrily.
One of the vultures shot a beam at her.
'Irma!' we yelled simultaneously.
Irma saw the beam coming and curled into a flying ball. Suddenly water appeared out of nowhere and enveloped Irma. The beam hit the ball of water but Irma didn't seem hurt. When she peeked between her arms the water fell to the ground. She then looked at the vultures.
'Yeah!' she said with a big smirk. 'Not so big now, are we?'
The vultures screeched and started attacking us again. Only this time they used their magic as well. Hay-Lin and I dodged a couple of vultures and we temporarily save. We let go of Eros and he managed to fly again.
'Eros, go home!' I commanded.
Eros looked shocked at me.
'What?' he said. 'No! Will, I'm your brother! It's my duty to protect you!'
We then dodged a beam of magic.
'That may be.' I said. 'But you are too weak. You even have trouble with flying. No, you go back and warn the others. By now some families should be there. Warn them. Ask them to help us.'
Eros looked at me with some stubbornness. So I gave him another reason.
'You can't defend yourself from these beams!' I added.
'And you can?' he asked me angrily.
I knew he knew that I could but that he just said that because he was scared for me. As if something wanted to prove him that I could, a beam came at us. Instead of dodging I kept steady. I felt the lightning going through my body and I willed it to form the same bubble that Irma had formed not too long ago. Only my bubble was made out of lightning, not water. The beam hit it but we weren't harmed. I saw Hay-Lin looking at me with some admiration and a big smile. While my bubble was slowly disappearing I looked again in Eros' eyes.
'Yes.' I said calmly.
Eros sighed and nodded.
'Fine. I'll go.' he said. 'Just stay alive until help has arrived.'
I smiled at him.
I looked one more time back. I saw Hay-Lin and Will flying away when suddenly a big black mist appeared. It seemed that it only covered Will. I wanted to rush back but Hay-Lin had noticed me.
'Eros! Go get help!' she yelled at me.
I gritted my beak and turned back, towards home. I flew as quick as I could with my injured wing. I knocked against some branches when I finally managed to see our home. I didn't have the strength to fly into our nest but it wasn't needed. My grandparents and parents, as well as the two lions, three monkeys, one bear, four wolves and three turtles were sitting at the root of our tree. I tried to land graciously but I felt that my energy was draining quicker than I thought. My landing ended into a crash landing. I steered at the root of the tree and nearly lost consciousness when I hit the ground.
'Eros!' I heard my mother say in fear.
Now more animals were calling my name but I stopped them.
'Please.' I said weakly. 'The girls…'
'What's with them?' Granddaddy asked concerned.
'We were ambushed… Vultures were attacking us… They can use magic, thanks to Will…iam.' I said weakly.
'Where? Where are they?' a raw voice said.
I didn't bother to look who said that.
'East wards.' I said. 'Near the Icy Mountains.'
After that I lost consciousness.
The young Owl fainted right in front of our eyes. I felt a little concerned for him but it was not the same feeling of concern I had towards the girls. I turned the Turtles.
'Adriana!' he said to the female Turtle. 'Can you together with Wally and Chrit watch over this young Owl and try to heal him?'
'Of course I can.' Adriana replied as she moved to go and check on the young Owl. Chrit whined at me but I ignored it.
'Why do I have to stay?' he said. 'I want to help too!'
'Chrit! If you want to help your sisters than you stay here and heal the Owl.' Wally's gruff voice said.
I turned to the other animals.
'We have to move quick.' I said. 'The Ancestors may know what William is trying to do now!'
'Of course we'll come.' Kimberly the bear said. 'He'll rue the day that he touched our kin!'
'Okay. Kimberly, you take the Wolf family with you.' I said. 'Katherine, I trust that you, together with Harold and Elisa, can sniff the girls out.'
'Of course.' Katherine, the Alfa Wolf said. 'We're famous because of our nose.'
'Baloo. You and Abasat take the trees. You two should be able to jump on the vultures from the trees.' I said to the monkey who came with Kimberly.
He nodded his head.
'Xephos. You together with Janice, Lawrence and Rina will take the air and take the vultures out or make them descend.'
'We will do as you ask.' the eldest Owl said.
'What about us?' a younger monkey asked me.
But before I could answer him, his father did.
'Peter, you are NOT coming with us.' Baloo said sternly.
'What! Why not?' Peter said angered. 'They're my sisters as well!'
'It's too dangerous for you. At least for now. I don't want to risk your life.' his father said.
'But Dad!' Peter whined.
'No more word about it young monkey!' Kimberly growled. 'Listen to your father.'
Peter hung his head.
'Yes Momma.' he said in compliance.
'Same goes for you, private.' Adriana said to the youngest of her small pack.
'What?' the young Wolf said shocked but after seeing the look her parents and grandmother were giving her she quickly shrunk.
'Yes, ma'am.' she then said.
I turned to my young charge. If I had taken Will then she would have grown up with Tala, my own cub. I saw that Tala was looking at me with a look that told me that she would go, no matter what.
'Tala.' I said. 'You stay close to me. This will be your first fight.'
Tala smiled and rubbed her cheek against mine.
'Thank you Mom.' she said. 'I really want to save them.'
'I know.' I said.
I noticed that the other young cubs wanted to complain to their parents about my decision but their parents glares were enough to silence them.
'Let's go save them!' I said as we headed out.
Great! I saw Eros flying away and suddenly I'm in this weird mist! The only thing I was sure off was that I was standing on the ground.
'Irma!' I called. 'Taranee! Cornelia! Hay-Lin!'
There was no answer. I couldn't see a thing and decided that it would be a better idea to walk on all fours. That way I could feel better. I slowly started walking through the darkness until I heard their voices. I ran the sound of their voices but stopped when I could understand what they were saying.
'Well done.' I heard Cornelia say.
I could actually see her smirking at the vultures.
'Yeah. Now we finally rid ourselves of that pest.' Irma said.
I was hurt. Were they talking about…me?'
'Yes, Will. They are talking about you.'
Shivers ran up my spine as I recognized that voice. The sounds and images from my sisters disappeared as I quickly turned around to see him. Taylor.
'What are you doing here?' I demanded.
'I am here to give you one more chance to let you join my master.' he said casually.
'And why should I believe you?' I spat at him. 'Last thing I remember was that you tried to kill me. Twice!'
Taylor laughed softly.
'Hehehe…Yeah, well. Master has seen you growing up. He has taken a liking into you like a… how is it called again? Ah yes. Like a real big brother. He wants you at his side when he takes what should be rightfully his.'
I staggered backwards.
'Well I don't like him!' I said. 'He tried to make me believe that my sisters didn't like me!'
'And what makes you so sure they do?' he countered.
'I saw it in my dream!' I yelled at him, but suddenly I started to feel unsure.
'You do know that dreams are not real, right?' he said as he slowly walked up to me.
I didn't move from my spot but I did go and stand on my hind paws so that I would be bigger than him. Not that he seemed to care. He circled around me, so close that I could almost feel his fur against my skin.
'What you just saw and heard.' he said. 'That was real.'
'I didn't see anything!' I lied to him.
'You didn't?' he said calmly. 'Then, let's watch what they are saying about you now.'
Another image appeared in the black mist. I saw my sisters laughing together and throwing apples at each other, while Hay-Lin tried to catch them.
'This is fun!' Taranee said.
'This is way better without Will!' Cornelia added.
Hay-Lin caught the apple and let it spin on her nose.
'I know right? I mean, you guys have been waiting for the moment that you would finally meet me so you could dump her. She is really an annoying fly.'
Tears sprung in my eyes as I heard them say that. This couldn't be them. They wouldn't act like this…Would they?
'Though I wish that we could have been the ones to finish her.' Irma said.
Hay-Lin threw the apple at Irma's head.
'You know what the Master has said. We are only allowed to kill her if she decides to turn against him.' Hay-Lin scolded with an evil smirk.
'Enough!' I yelled.
The image disappeared again. I glared at the tiger.
'Why did you let me see that?' I asked him.
'To show you the truth.' he said. 'I don't want you to get hurt.'
I didn't look at him. He kept circling around me but I could still hear the things my sisters said echoing through my head. How could they? After all we've been through? No… I wasn't going to give up. Not now! I trust my sisters and I know that they wouldn't do this.
'This is fake.' I said dryly.
Taylor stopped his circling and looked at me with a sparkle in his eyes.
'Is it?' he questioned lightly. 'Then let's see if you're right.'
Again an image appeared. Again with the girls saying bad thing about me. I wasn't sure for how long I could keep up with this. But one thing was for sure. I should not give up hope.
'Seems like that Keeper has a fiery spirit and some more confidence than the one from the Dragoons' universe.' Draganos commented. 'She must have been raised well.'
'She is, but I wonder if her willpower is already strong enough to let her stay sane as she faces her greatest fears.' Xin-Jing commented.
'I just wish we could do something!' Ayame said concerned.
'You know we can't.' Takako replied. 'We have the same role as the Oracle. The only time when we can intervene big time is during the Great Ritual.'
'That doesn't mean that it doesn't sucks.' Ayame mumbled.
All six dragons returned their attention to the pool.
'Will!' Irma and I yelled.
Eros wasn't gone or those stupid vultures did something to Will. They dropped some kind of berry which … boomed? Yeah boomed the moment it touched Will. Now a black mist surrounds her and we can't get to her! Those vultures are blocking our way.
'What have you done?' Taranee yelled angrily.
'Our master told us to do this.' the head vulture said. 'First we had to say that you four worked for him so to make the girl doubt you. Now we just have to wait until she joins us.'
'Will will never join your master!' I yelled.
For some reason the other girls were less sure.
'What's wrong guys?' I asked.
'Back at the wolves… Something similar happened.' Irma confessed.
'Really?' I asked surprised.
'Yeah… William managed to enter Will's mind and he started to make her think that we hated her.' Taranee said softly.
'While his other minion, Taylor, tried to make me kill her.' Cornelia said angrily.
I stared at them. What they said sounded stupid. How could that happen? Why would it happen anyway?
'But we managed to clear her doubts and Corny saw that she was about to do something wrong.' Irma said.
Cornelia growled slightly but didn't say much.
'At least we thought we cleared those doubts.' Taranee said.
'So there is nothing to be afraid off, right? I mean Will knows we love her.' I said, feeling relieved.
The other three looked a little uneasy at me.
'What?' I asked.
'William made her believe that…' Taranee started but she couldn't continue.
'Once we found you…' Cornelia continued but she also stopped.
I wondered why they kept looking at me with such unease. They seemed even more discomforted than before they spoke.
'We would dump Will and replace her for you!' Irma blurted out.
I felt hurt and confused. How could that guy made Will think like that? I would never try to do that. She's my sister and I care for her. I felt an anger rising in me. I've never felt like this before. I slowly turned to the vultures.
'Is this true?' I asked them.
I tried to keep my voice steady and calm but everyone could sense that I was pissed. Everyone but the head vulture that is.
'Yes!' he said. 'If the girl hadn't struggled back then, then we hadn't have to do this.'
The other vultures were slowly retreating as I felt that my magic was going out of control. I could feel that I myself was slipping out of control. And you know what? I couldn't care. Anyone who dares to question my loyalty will feel what I think of it! I created a tornado. The tornado was bigger than any I created before. And it kept growing. I dove into the tornado and went after the vultures.
*Okay, I admit. I never thought that Hay-Lin would lose it this badly. At least she cares a lot about us.* I thought as I tried to keep a hold of the tree.
Hay-Lin had made a gigantic tornado. I never knew she could make it this powerful. But then again I never thought she could be this angry.
*Have to remember that Hay-Lin is dangerous when it comes to protecting family.* I thought as I looked at her.
From the corners of my eyes I could see that Irma was slowly slipping from her tree. I also noticed that the strange mist that covered Will was still hanging there, as if the tornado couldn't blow it away. Then suddenly I saw Hay-Lin dive into the tornado.
'Hay-Lin!' I yelled.
It was useless. The wind took my words away. I saw how the tornado grew a bit more and how it started to chase the vultures. The vultures made the same bubbles we made to protect us from their beams but they got sucked into the tornado.
I turned my head to see that Irma's branch had broken off and she was now flying towards the tornado. Cornelia was quick to handle. She made some vines come from the trees. They then grabbed Irma and pulled her back to safety. I saw Irma say something but I couldn't hear her.
I looked at Irma and saw her wink at me. Of course! We could use our talking by thinking method!
*No problem Irma.*
*Guys, not to be a chicken…* I said. *But how are we going to make Hay-Lin calm down? I can't yell at her. The wind takes my words away.*
*And you are supposed to be the smart one.* Irma teased.
*Irma!* Cornelia scolded. *We don't have time for your teasing. Only use your mouth when you've got an idea.*
*But I have one.* Irma replied.
I looked surprised at Irma.
*You do?* I asked surprised.
*Yes. I do.* Irma said, sounding a bit annoyed.
*Well? Let's hear it!* Cornelia urged.
*Ever thought of trying to reach her like this?* Irma said simply.
Me and Cornelia looked at each other. We felt kinda stupid. We've been talking to each other for some time and hadn't thought about trying to get Hay-Lin into the conversation as well.
*Worth a try.* I said. *Hay-Lin! Hay-Lin!*
For a moment I thought that I wouldn't get in contact with her but suddenly I could hear her.
*Taranee?* she said. *Stay out of this.*
*That's nice to say to your sister.* Irma commented.
*You don't know how I feel Irma.* Hay-Lin countered.
*She maybe not. But I do.* Cornelia said. *My first encounter with the others didn't go so well. And when they came to live with me and I tried to kill Will… You have no idea how I felt back then. I wanted revenge as well, Hay-Lin. I wanted to take Taylor down. Bury him, strangle him you call it. But I didn't. And you know why? Because I could hurt Will. And you are now hurting us as well Hay-Lin! Calm down! Will doesn't think that way and I don't think that William can get her to think like that again.*
For a moment I thought that Hay-Lin had ignored Cornelia but then the tornado stopped. The vultures were still in their bubble but they looked roughly shaken. Hay-Lin hang in midair when she suddenly started to fall. I flew up and caught her.
'Taranee.' she said weakly. 'I'm sorry. I don't know what came over me. I normally would never get angry about this.'
I smiled at her.
'It's okay.' I said. 'You at least gave those vultures a scare. Maybe now we can get to Will. Can you fly again?'
'I-I think so…' Hay-Lin said as she took the air again.
Right then Irma and Cornelia joined us.
'Wow! Hay-Lin! That's was fantastic!' Irma said. 'You really scared those birds!'
Hay-Lin giggled softly and blushed.
'You really scared us too.' Cornelia added.
'I'm sorry.' Hay-Lin said as she hung her head.
'Don't listen to her.' Irma said. 'That was just great!'
'Guys! Remember? Will?' I said, trying to get their attention.
They all looked at me.
'Oh yeah… Oops.' Irma said. 'Let's get her out of that mist.'
We flew at the dark mist when we found our path blocked by the vultures. I felt my anger and annoyance rise but I tried to keep it cool.
'And where do you think you are going?' the head vulture asked.
'Going to Will.' Irma replied casually. 'So if you would fly aside.'
'And what if we won't?' another vulture said.
We looked at each other. It was clear that if we started fighting them again that we would lose. They were with more and Hay-Lin was weakened. Hay-Lin…That's it!
'If you don't let us go then Hay-Lin will create another tornado but this time I'll add some fire to it.' I said casually as I made a fireball in my paws.
The vultures saw the fireball and saw how Hay-Lin mixed a little tornado with it. They weren't liking what they saw. It seemed that they didn't want to end up in a fire tornado. But then their head started to laugh.
'Do you want us to believe that you are still strong enough to create another one!' he said. 'I've seen how you nearly fell from the sky! You can't hurt us.'
'If they can't than we will!' a voice said.
We turned around. We were all flying low above the ground and saw Abasat, Dad and Momma, Grandmother, Beta and Gamma, Sable and another Lioness and Granddaddy, Grandmamma, Daddy and Mommy. The vultures tried to get away but Dad, Abasat, Granddaddy, Grandmamma, Daddy and Mommy knocked them to the ground.
'Dad! Momma!' I cried in happiness.
The others all cried in happiness as well to see our saviors. The animals gave us small smiles before turning to the vultures.
'Where is Will?' Sable questioned, baring her teeth.
'It doesn't matter.' the head vulture said. 'Taylor should have talked her to the Master's side by now.'
Momma, Sable and the other Lioness growled. Momma started to kill the vultures, claiming that they would be a great dinner. The wolves helped her with it. Sable and the other Lioness however started to run at the mist. I wanted to run after her but Dad stopped me. I saw that the others were stopped by Abasat.
'You have to wait here children.' Abasat said. 'That mist could hurt you or worse. Let Sable and her daughter go and pray to the ancestors that everything will be alright.'
I watched how Sable and the other Lioness jumped into the black mist. I grabbed Dad's arm tighter and cried in his chest.
Again with the images! Only this time they were way more real than the last time. Finally when the last image disappeared I fell to the ground, crying. Taylor had taken the liberty to lie down next to me. But I didn't care. It felt kinda nice to have someone here in the darkness.
'You can cry in my fur if you want.' he said.
I immediately turned to where I thought his belly was and cried in his fur. It felt nice and warm. I almost wanted to go with him. He wasn't as bad as I thought… No! What am I thinking? Even if my sisters were like this I couldn't join William! He was bad! I got up again and looked away from Taylor…At least I think I looked away from him.
I heard him get up as well.
'So are you ready to go to your brother?' he asked.
'He is not my brother.' I stated. 'I believe in my sisters! They didn't do this!'
Taylor laughed softly.
'Is that so?' he said. 'Then let's watch one more thing shall we?'
Again an image appeared. I saw Hay-Lin, Cornelia, Irma and Taranee laying lazily on a branch of a tree.
'Say Hay-Lin, shouldn't we take a look at Eros? It seems that he didn't manage to get some help.' Cornelia asked.
'Nah, just let him die.' Hay-Lin said not caring.
'I say we look for him. Check if he's alive. If he isn't we'll eat him.' Irma proposed.
'And what if he isn't?' Taranee asked.
'Then we'll kill him and eat him.' Hay-Lin said with a grin. 'Great idea Irma.'
The image blurred away but I started laughing. I started to laugh hard.
'What's so funny?' he asked.
'You betrayed yourself.' I said.
'What do you mean?' Taylor asked calmly but I could hear a dangerous edge in his voice.
'Hay-Lin cares way too much about Eros to kill him and or eat him!' I said. 'And so do the others! I was right! This is all fake!'
I crackled my hands with lightning and I could finally see something. I saw Taylor looking at me rather annoyed.
'So you figured it out huh?' he said. 'Then there is no other option. I'll knock you out and bring you to him myself!'
He prepared himself to jump at me when I heard two roars from behind. I turned my head to see two Lions jump over me. I recognized Sable immediately but I didn't recognize the way younger Lioness. She didn't look like an adult.
'Sable, how nice of you to join us.' Taylor said.
'Leave her alone.' Sable said coldly.
The other Lioness glared at him before turning to me. I felt a little scared until she rubbed her cheek against mine.
'Everything okay, sis?' she asked me.
I looked confused at her but I nodded.
'That's great.' she said. 'I'm Tala by the way.'
'W-Will.' I said.
'I know. Mom talks a lot about you.' she said.
'Mom?' as I looked at Sable.
Sable and Taylor were still glaring at each other. Then Taylor laughed softly.
'I know when I'm outnumbered dear sister.' he said.
Slowly the darkness started to disappear and Taylor as well.
'Until next time.' he said.
Suddenly everything was light. I had to cover my eyes and suddenly I got tackled. When I opened my eyes again I saw that the other girls were laying on top of me, either hugging me or rubbing their cheeks against mine.
'Will!' I heard the girls yell.
'I'm so glad you're save!' Hay-Lin said.
I knew it. Taylor was lying. They wouldn't abandon me and this proved it.
After everyone was sure that Will was unharmed they returned to the others. During their walk Cornelia was walking with her family, licking them, rubbing her cheek against Harold's or Elisa's or playfully snapping at Katherine. Taranee was with her monkey father and bear mother. She often rode on Kimberly's back or was thrown through the trees by Baloo. Irma walked together with Abasat and explained him what happened so far. Hay-Lin flew in the air with her grandparents and parents and twittered about everything that had happened and how happy she was that Will was save and that she could meet the other families as well. And Will was walking with her actual mother and sister. She told them what happened so far but was glad to finally meet them for real and actually being able to talk to them more than just three lines. Once the girls arrived at the root of the tree, where the Owl's nest was, they saw the other pleasant surprise. After making sure that Eros wasn't too badly wounded they went to the their other siblings. After that the girls introduced their families to each other. Hay-Lin had found a liking in Chrit while Cornelia found a liking in Peter. Taranee seemed to like Tala and Will…Well she kinda knew everyone already. After that Kimberly gave the dead vultures to Xephos and he brought them to the nest. They then advanced to the open spot where the ritual would start.
The Ancestor's POV:
The five humans and Hybrid looked relieved at the pool.
'It seems that we've been worrying about nothing.' Mieko said.
'I believe you're right.' Takako said.
'Now let's prepare ourselves. We can't show up like this.' Ayame said.
The five women turned back to their dragon forms. Draganos looked at them.
'If you don't mind I don't transform just yet.' he said.
'You want to show off, don't you?' Xin-Jing asked annoyed.
Draganos grinned at her.
'Of course.' he said.
'If I may.' Natsuko said. 'The girls are all spirits in the Heart. How are you going to export them to a physical universe?'
'I'm not for nothing the Grand Dragon of Protection. I'll use my own magic to turn them and their clothes physical. It's really easy as long as I don't plan to take them to another planet in their own universe.'
'Oh I get it.' Natsuko said. 'You're simply dodging the rules. Smart move.'
'Why thank you.' Draganos said with a bow. 'Now let us watch the final preparations.'
The Dragons along with the Hybrid looked at the pool. The preparations were almost done. Abasat just had to say one more sentence and they could appear.
We were all sitting in the circle. First Abasat, then two Lions, then the Turtles, followed by the Bear and the Monkeys, then the Wolves and then the Owls. And we Humans closed the circle. Will sat next to Abasat, Irma next to Will, Taranee next to Irma, I nest to Taranee and Hay-Lin next to me. We were all waiting with curiosity as Abasat was pronouncing the spell.
'And now Great Ancestors!' he said with an impressive voice. 'Appear and grace us with your presence!'
It became dark. I looked at the sky and I saw that really dark clouds were covering the last bits of sunshine. Lightning raged through them. I then gave Will an inquisitive look. She held her paws up as if she was saying that it wasn't her doing. I wanted to give her a skeptical look but suddenly the Earth rumbled, Water from the river was heard splashing roughly, Fire erupted on the four corners of the open spot and the Wind began to blow. I felt scared. Suddenly a white light appeared from the sky. I tried to look at it but I would be blinded if I did. A roar was heard. The roar was louder and heavier than I Lion's roar. Then the light started to dim. I looked back up and saw six forms descend. Five of them looked like giant lizards with wings while the last one was smaller. I'm not even sure what he is.
The Dragons descended and Draganos landed next to them. Draganos chuckled lightly at the awed expression of the five young girls. He noticed that the five girls looked a lot like their counterparts from the Dragoon's universe. The only difference was that these girls were dressed in a fur, their hair was crudely cut most likely with a sharp stone and they all had their own elemental signs on their hands or feet. With exception of the Keeper, who seemed to have all the symbols on her body. Draganos looked at Xin-Jing and the rest as they did what they're supposed to do. Complaining.
'Tell us.' Xin-Jing boomed in the animal tongue.
All the animals shrunk at the hearing of her voice. The girls as well tried to make themselves as tiny as possible.
'Why did the five humans get attacked?' Xin-Jing continued.
Abasat cleared his throat.
'Mighty Ancestor.' he said. 'We try to protect them as much as we can but William has his ways to evade our defenses.'
'That doesn't explain why the cub of Earth tried to kill the cub of Energy!' Mieko said angered.
This made the animals who didn't know about that little accident look at Cornelia. Cornelia cringed at the looks. She then looked at the Ancestors.
'I-I…can't defend myself from that accusation.' she said. 'But in the end I never wanted to kill her. She is my sister and I wouldn't dare to kill her.'
Mieko's eyes glimmered with hidden joy as she watched her descendant say this. Xin-Jing decided to have a little more fun and turned to Sable.
'You were supposed to watch over the cub of Energy. You yourself thought you weren't ready to do so and gave the care to the Turtles. It is your fault that the child has a poor self confidence and that she fails in putting faith in her sisters!' Xin-Jin bellowed, making Sable hang her head in defeat.
'That's not fair!' Tala said.
She immediately got silenced by the glares of the Ancestors. Will, however, wasn't planning on letting that being said.
'You have no right to say that!' she said boldly to the Dragons.
All five of the Dragons turned to look at Will, who cringed a bit under their glares but kept glaring back. They were speaking bad about her after all. The Dragons noticed that the other girls came to stand right next to Will.
'You have no right to blame Sable!' Taranee said, shielding Will from the glares of the Dragons.
'Especially not if you are blaming her from things that aren't true!' Irma added as she too shielded Will.
'Will doesn't lack confidence!' Cornelia said, as she too added to the shield.
'And she puts her faith in us!' Hay-Lin said.
The Dragons looked with hidden pride at their descendants. All of them were standing up to the most terrifying beings they've ever seen. At least that should be the girls' first impression.
'So you're telling me that it's wrong that I blame Sable for something she hasn't done while you two have been blaming each other for things that you couldn't control and above all weren't true?' Xin-Jing said to Irma and Taranee.
The two of them looked down and kept quiet. Xin-Jing then turned to Hay-Lin and Cornelia.
'And you, cub of Earth. You're saying that the cub of Energy has self confidence. Yet you were the one claiming that she hadn't. And you, cub of Air, claim that the cub of Energy is capable of putting her faith in others while you've heard that she was the one who didn't dare to trust you because of her fear of being abandoned by her own sisters?'
At this neither Cornelia and Hay-Lin could say a thing. They felt scolded and turned their heads down. Will then pushed forward, trying to block the girls from the glares of the Ancestors.
'That may be true…' she said. 'But that doesn't give you the right to pick on them!'
The Dragons looked with increasing interest at the little redhead.
'It's true I was kinda scared they would leave me but I know now that that was a stupid thought! They wouldn't leave me! And they have a right to trust me! If you think that all those things that have happened over the time that we've been here are bad, then punish me. It's my fault in the first place! William wants me! Not Irma, not Cornelia, not anyone but me! So if you want to blame someone, blame me. But leave the others alone!' she said.
She then seemed to have noticed that it sounded a little rude and she quickly added: "Ma'am".
At this the five Dragons and the Hybrid started to laugh. Their laughing was so loud and sounded so heavy that the hearts of the animals and the girls were pounding on the rhythm of their laughter. Then the Dragons turned to the five girls, who seemed to be a bit shaken by them.
'No worries young ones.' Ayame said.
'We were testing you.' Takako said.
'And you've passed.' Mieko added with a smile.
'A test? A test for what?' Irma asked a little annoyed.
'You five are going on a journey.' Natsuko said.
'A journey?' Hay-Lin said with a quivering voice. 'What do you mean?'
'You five will go to another universe for a full year and learn more about your elements.' Xin-Jing explained.
'Really?' Irma asked with big eyes.
'Yes, really.' Natsuko said with a smile.
The five girls looked at each other. Four of them seemed thrilled to go. One of them wasn't too happy with it.
'Hay-Lin don't be sad.' Will said. 'It's just a year. We'll be back before you know!'
'Really?' Hay-Lin said.
'Really.' Will said with a smile.
Irma then hugged her.
'Come on Hay-Hay!' she said. 'A new adventure! New animals to annoy!'
Natsuko looked at Ayame.
'Oh God. I think Draganos is going to have a lot of fun with them.' she whispered, getting a giggle out of her.
'Okay. That settles it.' Xin-Jing said. 'Draganos will speak to you about it. He's the Dragon look alike who stands next to us. He'll bring you to his universe. Now, say goodbye to your families.'
The girls all had a emotional parting with their families. Taranee got hugged by Kimberly, Baloo and Peter. Cornelia touched heads with her parents, grandmother and Lilian. Irma touched heads with Adriana, Wally and Chrit. Hay-Lin got hugged by her grandparents, parents and Eros and Will touched head with Sable and Tala. After that the five were taken apart from the animals by Draganos so that the Ancestors could do their job.
'So little humans.' he said in English. 'Back at my universe there are six special beings that are very much like you. They will be happy to see you.'
The five girls looked at him as if he was mad. Then Irma turned to Hay-Lin.
'Do you know what this guy said?' she questioned Hay-Lin, getting a soft 'No' in return.
'Good. I thought I was going mad.' she said getting a giggle from Hay-Lin.
Draganos looked at the five girls before considering something. They've grown up with animals. It was only normal that they couldn't understand English.
*You could have given me the heads up you know.* Draganos send telepathically to Xin-Jing.
He saw Xin-Jing smile for a while before he returned his attention to the five girls in front of him.
'Stay still.' he ordered in animal tongue.
The girls didn't move as he walked past them. He touched the ears of every girl. He then went to stand in front of them.
'Now open your mouths and show me your tongue.' he said in the same language.
'Why?' Irma said.
'You'll see.' Draganos said.
Irma shrugged and did as he told her to do. Draganos then touched their tongues.
'Now, can you understand me?' Draganos asked in English.
'Yes, of course.' Cornelia said as if it was normal.
Suddenly she seemed to notice that she wasn't speaking animal language, but English.
'Wh-What happened?' Taranee asked, also in English.
'As I said before, you are going to meet six beings who are much like yourselves. But they speak English, the language that you speak now.' Draganos explained.
'Fear not.' he said when he noticed the look of fear on the girls' faces. 'You are still capable of speaking the language of the animals. You just have to focus on it.'
Will was the first one to try.
'Am I talking normal again?' she asked in animal tongue.
'Yes.' Taranee answered in the same language. 'Only now I can hear the difference.'
'Me too.' Irma said.
'Yeah.' Cornelia said as she held her tongue in disbelieve.
'This. Is. Spacious!' Hay-Lin said.
'Now that we're all settled are you ready to go?' Draganos asked in English.
The girls nodded. Draganos transformed into his Chinese Silver Dragon form, amazing the girls.
'Wow.' they said.
'Climb on my back and we'll be off.' Draganos said.
The girls climbed on his back, mostly using their wings to get there and held tight. Draganos created a big silver energy bubble around him and the girls. The girls felt a little weird but that didn't mind. Draganos took off and at the same time, the girls fell asleep.
'Sleep well girls. Because this will be one adventure that you won't forget.' Draganos said.
[A/N] And that was it! Finito! The End! The girls have taken off to the new universe of the Dragoons. This is going to be a whole lot of fun! You don't know who the Dragoons are? Shame on you! Then you should read Lexvan's story Dragon Children. And of course the sudden use of names in this chapter. Here's a recap:
Katherine= Alpha Grandmother Wolf
Baloo=Dad the Monkey
Chrit= The annoying little brother Turtle of Will and Irma
Peter= Taranee's awesome Monkey brother
Lisa = Cornelia's little Wolf sister
Eros= Hay-Lin's older annoying Owl brother
Xephos= Granddaddy Owl
Janice= Grandmamma Owl
Lawrence= Daddy Owl
Sable= Will's 'real' Lion mother
Tala= Will's 'real' Lion sister
Now I'll see you in our next story: "When Dragons meet Fairies."!
And don't forget to review!