Finally it's done! I'm sorry if the his chapter seemed rushed(Especially at the end), but I tired my best to finish. As you can see, there was just a lot to write about and not enough time, so I had to cut down on some of the details. Please excuse any grammatical errors, its 2:00 am and I just finished. Hope you guys enjoy ;)


Arpheus and her friends had all outgrown most of their feathers. Arpheus had become a beautiful female emperor penguin, who was just about Gloria's height. Her blue and gold feathers grew perfectly into her slim body type. Her eyes were still the same as ever, if not more pronounced. Aaron was just a bit taller than Arpheus. He was growing to be an incredibly handsome penguin, which really didn't help the girl problem he has had since his chick-hood. A lot of girls would whisper about him being their mate, but a few in particular was obsessed with him. One of these penguins was Eileen; she was always trying to get his attention, but Aaron has learned to ignore them over these past months. Aaron was now a great fantastic dancer and singer, in fact most of the time he would dance his own choreography instead of having another penguin lead the dancers. He has only let Arpheus or Mumble lead dancers in the songs he sang. It was almost time for graduation and Arpheus was extremely excited for a couple of reasons. The first one being the obvious, she got to graduate! The second one being that her mother promised to be there at graduation. Alexandria told Arpheus that she had a surprise in store, so Arpheus was really excited to see what it was. One thing she was kind of sad about was the fact that Syrena was gone. After that whole incident with Syrena, Arpheus really wished she was here to graduate.

It was a rather bright morning for Arpheus. She was having trouble keeping her eyes open and, when she did manage to keep them open, she would have to squint her eyes. She groggily walked along the icy walls to got to the main room, where Mumble, Gloria, and Jake probably were. Arpheus quickly remembered that there was only two days left until graduation. She immediately woke up and ran to the main room. When she turned the corner, she slipped and was now sliding on the ice. She managed to trip Jake and he fell on top of her by accident.

"Watch where you're going Arpheus!" Jake said.

"Geez, when did you get so heavy. You should really cut down." Arpheus joked as she tried to push him off of her.

"Oh well I guess I'm not moving." Jake said.

Arpheus knew she wasn't strong enough to move Jake off of her, so she was forced to make a compromise.

"Okay Jake, what do you want?" Arpheus asked.

"I want you to apologize-"

"I'm sorry, there now please get off of me!" Arpheus said as she struggled under him.

"And I want you to admit that I'm better than you." Jake finished.

"What?! No way." Arpheus said.

"Well I guess you're staying down there." Jake said.

"Ma! Pa!" Arpheus called.

"They're not here right now." Jake said.

"Okay fine I'll admit it." Arpheus said. She took a deep breath.

"Well I'm waiting." Jake said.

"You're-Pa! Please tell him to get off me!" Arpheus said as she saw him walk in.

Mumble sighed. "Jake please get off your sister." Mumble said.

"Aww, but-"

"Jake please. There are a lot of things to be done before graduation." Mumble said.

"Okay pa. Are you okay?" Jake asked.

"Yeah just a little tired that's all." Mumble said. "If you chicks don't hurry you might be late for classes though." Mumble said as began to walk out again.

"Aww pa! We're not chicks anymore." Arpheus whined.

"Yeah what she said." Jake said.

Mumble turned his head a bit to get a look at them, since he was facing away from them. "You'll always be my little chicks." Mumble teased with a smile. He turned back around to see Aaron heading this way. "Hey Aaron." Mumble greeted.

"Hi Mumble." Aaron greeted with his usual smile.

As Mumble left, Aaron came in.

"What's up Aaron?" Jake greeted.

"Hey Aaron!" Arpheus greeted.

"Hey sorry for being late, but we should really get going." Aaron said.

"Wait, but-" Arpheus was cut off.

"Not buts!" Aaron said as grabbed her ans started dragging her away.

Arpheus struggled and protested, but to no avail.

"You know...you're the meanest penguin." Arpheus said.

"I aim to please." Aaron said with a smile as he let go of her.

The three chicks shared a laugh as they were walking towards their small school. The three young penguins rushed in and quickly made their way to their respective spots. They had made it just in time.

"Good morning all." Mrs. Viola greeted.

"Good morning Mrs. Viola." The class said at the same time.

"Well as you should know, graduation is in two days." Mrs. Viola said. "But tomorrow we're going to have a showcase that will consist of one lucky singer and dancer, who will represent our class." Mrs. Viola explained.

The class began murmuring among themselves.

"We will choose these two lucky penguins by a matter of a class wide census, so just raise your flipper when the penguin's name, whom you think should be in the talent show is said." Mrs. Viola explained. "Now I need you to give me names of penguins who you think should be representing the class."

The class started buzzing with whispers.

"Kourtney!." A male voice shouted out.

"Okay, anyone else?" Mrs. Viola asked.

"Aaron!" Several female voices shouted.

"Arpheus!" Jake and Gab shouted.

Arpheus turned to look at them with wide eyes. They had respective smirks on their beaks. She then got an idea. She poked Aaron, who was next to her, and whispered something to him.

"Jake and Gabriel." The two penguins said simultaneously.

"Alright." Mrs. Viola confirmed.

Arpheus looked back at them with a smirk of her own. She giggled when she saw their beaks drop.

"Eileen!" A large group shouted.

Arpheus rolled her eyes in annoyance.

"Christie!" Another group of penguins shouted.

The class then settled down.

"Okay, so the seven candidates are Kourtney, Aaron, Arpheus, Jake, Gabriel, Eileen, and Christie." Mrs. Viola said. "Okay now raise your flipper, when the name of the penguin that you want singing is called." Mrs. Viola explained.

"Kourtney."

Some flippers went up.

"Aaron."

The majority of the females raised their flippers, while giggling. Arpheus had her flipper raised as well. Some male penguins also raised their flippers in support of this choice.

"Arpheus."

Everyone knew Arpheus refused to sing, so most penguins didn't bother to raise their flippers. Aaron, on the other hand, had his flipper raised.

"Jake."

A decent amount of flippers were raised, but not as much as the last two.

"Gabriel."

About the same amount of flippers were raised.

"Eileen."

Not many flippers were raised to Arpheus' surprise.

"Christie."

A few raised their flippers.

It was obvious to everyone that Aaron had gotten the most support and, frankly, no one was really surprised. He was a great singer and dancer, not to mention a very humble penguin.

"Okay well it looks like Aaron will be our lead singer." Mrs. Viola announced. "Okay on to our lead dancer." Mrs. Viola said.

"Kourtney."

A surprising amount of flippers went up.

"Arpheus."

A great amount of flippers went up in the air. Arpheus recognized a lot of the penguins that were supporting her and some were just unexpected. Almost half of the class.

"Jake."

Very few flippers were raised.

"Gabriel."

About the same as Jake.

"Eileen."

Due to her popularity, a bunch of penguins had their flippers raised for her. Arpheus didn't quite understand why people didn't vote her to be the singer, but now she saw it was to perform with Aaron. Arpheus turned to look at her with suspicious eyes and she got a smug look as a response.

"Christie.

The few that had not voted raised their flippers.

"Okay, this is one was a very close one. Our lead dancer is...Eileen." Mrs. Viola said.

"What?!" Kourtney shouted.

"Mrs. Viola Arpheus is clearly the better dancer, she deserves to be the lead dancer." Jake said.

"The class chose Eileen to be the lead dancer, so it will stay that way." Mrs. Viola explained.

"Besides she can't represent our class. Only the best can." Eileen said with a smug look. "She would only drag Aaron down anyway." Eileen said.

"Eileen that is enough from you! We do not tolerate such insults." Mrs. Viola said in an icy tone.

Aaron was not particularly happy with the arrangement. He thought Arpheus would have been the lead dancer a landslide. He looked next to him to see Arpheus looking at some random spot.

"Arpheus don't listen to her. I thought you were gonna win for sure. " Aaron said.

Arpheus snapped out of her trance. "Yeah...That's okay though. I'm sure you two will do great." Arpheus said.

"I think you and I would've been amazing though." Aaron said with a smile.

"You think so?" Arpheus asked.

"Yeah of course I do." Aaron answered.

Arpheus was lost in her thoughts yet again.

"Alright class settle down!" Mrs. Viola said. "The lead dancer and singer must see me after classes are over.

The rest of the day went by smoothly as always. Jake, Arpheus, Kourtney, and Syrena were waiting for Aaron outside. Aaron came out with somewhat frustrated expression.

"Sorry guys, I can't go with you today." Aaron said.

"But why?" Arpheus asked.

"Apparently I have to stay and practice the song with Eileen and..." Aaron said the rest in inaudible mumbles.

"What?" Jake asked.

"Never-mind, but I gotta go." Aaron said as he walked back into the small school.

"I wonder what's got him so down." Kourtney said.

"Yeah he hasn't been himself lately." Jake said. "Well we better get going." Jake said.

The group then started walking towards Arpheus' home. Arpheus walked in silence the whole way; she was thinking about Aaron. Like the others, Arpheus had also noticed Aaron's sudden change in the last few days. It seemed like he was kind of avoiding her outside of classes. He just hasn't been nearly spending as much time with her as he usually does. Her thoughts were suddenly interrupted.

"Hey guys!" Erik shouted.

"Erik!" Arpheus said as she went up to him and gave him a hug.

"Is my little sister excited to graduate?" Erik asked teasingly.

"I'm not that little anymore you know." Arpheus retorted. Arpheus looked around. "Where's Bo?" Arpheus asked.

"Oh she's a bit-" Erik was cut off.

Just then Bo made her appearance with a backwards somersault.

"I'm here!" Bo said.

Arpheus immediately gave Bo a hug as a greeting.

"Well hello to you too Arpheus." Bo said.

"Wait Bo how did you get here so fast?" Erik asked.

"Umm...I might have taken a shortcut." Bo said innocently.

"It wouldn't happen to be 'that' shortcut would it?" Erik asked.

"Maybe." Bo said playfully with a wink.

Erik sighed and then chuckled.

"Where's ma?" Jake asked.

"She's inside along with pa." Erik said as he gestured the group to follow him in.

Arpheus and the group followed Erik and Bo inside. They immediately found Mumble and Gloria, who were talking about something. Mumble and Gloria proceeded to greet the group.

"Hey Arpheus, your mom came by today." Gloria said.

"She did? Where is she?" Arpheus asked.

"She was in a hurry, but she did tell me that she was coming by tomorrow." Gloria said.

"Why is she coming by tomorrow?" Arpheus asked. Its not that she didn't want her mother here, but usually she would be busy.

"She's staying here tomorrow, so she can watch you graduate." Gloria said with a smile.

Arpheus' eyes immediately lit up with joy. "Really?!" Arpheus shouted.

"Yep." Gloria answered.

Arpheus was so happy she tackled Gloria into a hug. Warm tears of happiness were streaming down her eyes. "Thank you." Arpheus whispered.

"What are you thanking me for?" Gloria asked with a chuckle.

"For everything." Arpheus answered.

Gloria immediately picked on what she meant and returned her hug. She was caressing her back with her flipper in a gentle manner. Gloria then lifted Arpheus' face up and, with a warm smile, wiped off the tears in her eyes.

"She's so proud of you Arpheus. We all are." Gloria said.

"You really have come so far. I remember when I found you." Mumble said as he approached her.

Arpheus let go of Gloria and gave Mumble a hug as well.

"Now come on we have things to prepare." Mumble said.

Arpheus nodded and let go of him. Mumble, Gloria, Bo, and Erik were walking out of the cave.

Mumble turned around. "Actually do you guys want to help us?" Mumble asked.

"Help you with what?" Kourtney asked.

"Fishing." Bo answered.

"Fishing?" Arpheus said confused.

"Yeah we're collecting fish for we're throwing before graduation." Bo answered.

"But we don't know how to swim." Syrena pointed out.

"Well you wanna learn how?" Erik asked.

No more further answers were needed as the four young penguins immediately ran outside. On the way to the shore they picked up Age,Hayley,Nicki, and Seymour as they finally reached the shore, the young penguins were hesitant to jump in the water.

"Are you sure its safe?" Gab asked.

"Of course it is! Come on in." Erik answered.

"But what if I can't swim?" Kourtney asked.

"Honey we'll show you how to swim. Trust me its safe." Nicki said.

"I don't know..." Jake said.

Arpheus looked at the water and approached it. She didn't understand what was so unsafe about it, so she dipped her foot in to see what all the fuzz was about. She looked at Mumble, who was gesturing her to come in. Arpheus dived into the water and, instinctively, began swimming. She saw how beautiful it was under the water and took a moment to appreciate it. Arpheus then came up to the surface.

"What are you waiting for? The water feels great!" Arpheus said as she dove in and started swimming around.

The rest of the group looked at each other and jumped in at the same time. All of them got the hang of swimming very fast. The penguins all got together underwater to discuss fishing.

"Woah its amazing down here!" Jake said.

"It sure is." Hayley said.

Mumble spotted a school of fish that was coming towards them.

"Okay this is where the lesson begins." Mumble said as he began swimming towards the fish. When Mumble got close enough the fish immediately spread out in different directions. Mumble took and caught one with his beak. He swam back towards the group. "And that is how you catch a fish." Mumble said in muffled voice, since he was holding the fish with his beak.

"That doesn't look too hard." Arpheus said.

"Well then go try it!" Mumble said.

All four young penguins spread out to find their own fish. After a while, all of them came back to the same spot. None of them had fish.

"Its not as easy as it looks I guess." Arpheus said sheepishly.

"You just have to get the hang of it." Age said.

"Once you do its really not hard at all." Hayley said.

"I'm ready to go again!" Jake said.

As soon as he said that, Arpheus spotted a large group of fish. She immediately took off towards the group to try and secure one. The fish immediately spread out, but Arpheus already had her sights set on one. She was falling behind though. Arpheus was losing speed very quickly as she tried to go faster.

"Arpheus just relax! Swimming is kind of like...dancing! Find your rhythm!" Mumble shouted.

Arpheus didn't know what he meant at first, but after relaxing and seeing that she was gaining on the fish little by little; she realized what he meant. Instead of jus trying to swim as fast as she could in reckless movements, Arpheus slowed down and found a beat. She started swimming in rhythmic smooth motions and felt the difference in speed. She immediately caught up to the fish and caught it in her beak. Arpheus turned around and swam towards them.

"Wow Arpheus good job!" Jake said.

"Yeah you really got the hang of it." Mumble said.

Arpheus swallowed the fish.

"Thanks! I just found my rhythm." Arpheus said with a smile.

"Wow that was pretty impressive, its gonna be hard to beat that guys." Erik said.

"I'll beat her!" Jake said with confidence.

"No way, its my turn to get a fish." Gab said.

"Ladies first boys." Kourtney said as she swam past both of them.

The rest of the swim went by very well. After everyone of the young penguins learned to catch a fish, they had a competition of who could catch the most fish. At the end of the day, Mumble won by a couple of fish with Age close behind him. Everyone caught plenty of fish, so they had an extravagant amount. It took a few trips, but they got all the fish back to Mumble's home and stacked them there. By now the sun had almost set.

"We better get going." Age said.

"Yeah we're going to need all the rest we can get for tomorrow." Hayley said.

"We should do the same." Erik said

"Why do we have to go so soon?" Gab asked.

"Because tomorrow is a big day for our little penguins." Bo said.

"Maaaa!" Gab whined.

They all shared a laugh.

They all said their goodbyes and went their separate ways.

"Well we should get some rest for tomorrow." Mumble said.

"Now?!" Jake asked.

"Yes." Mumble answered.

"Why?" Jake whined.

"Jake we're all going to need all the rest we can get tomorrow. It's a big day for you and Arpheus." Gloria explained.

"Okay." Jake said in a defeated tone.

"Okay, good night!" Arpheus said.

"Good night." Mumble said.

The penguin family went to get some much needed rest. Everyone was excited was excited for tomorrow, especially Arpheus. This is going to be the first time, in a long time, that Arpheus would be able to spend an extended amount of time with her mother. She couldn't wait to show her how she's changed and introduce her mother to her new friends. Despite being so excited for graduation and her mother, Aaron was the only thing on her mind right now. She's been worries about Aaron ever-since he started acting up. It seems like in school he was his normal-self, but outside of school he was acting too distant from her. They used to spend so much time together talking and joking, but now they don't. Arpheus worried about it, because she couldn't imagine Aaron not being her friend anymore. She would do anything to stop that from happening. Even after all this time, Arpheus still got that warm feeling when she thought about Aaron. At first, she thought it was just her shyness, but lately she has discovered its something way beyond that.

Morning came quickly for Arpheus. She didn't groggy in the least. Arpheus jumped out of her slumber and made a dash for the main room, in which no one was at the time. It was surprising, because Arpheus was not the one to wake up early. The first one up was usually Gloria.

"Honey what are you doing up so early?" Gloria asked as she came into the main room.

"I don't know. I just woke up I guess." Arpheus said.

"You gotta be excited right?" Gloria said as she went to get some fish.

"Of course I am!" Arpheus said in a cheery tone with a smile. That smile quickly turned into a frown though.

"Is everything alright?" Gloria asked. She noticed the sudden change in attitude.

"Its just Aaron..." Arpheus said.

"What about Aaron?" Gloria asked with a fish on her beak.

"Well the last few days, he hasn't been himself. I think he's avoiding me. It seems like when we're in school everything is fine, but outside of school we just never spend time together anymore." Arpheus said.

Gloria offered her the fish, which she gladly took and ate. "Did you ask him about it?" Gloria asked as she went back to get another fish.

"Well I did once, but he just said that he's busy." Arpheus said. "Maybe I'm just-"

"Arpheus it probably has nothing to do with you. I know Aaron and he's not the kind of penguin to avoid you like that. He probably has a good reason." Gloria explained.

Yeah...But I just wish he would tell me, so I could help." Arpheus said in a depressed voice. "Ma what's love?" Arpheus suddenly asked.

Gloria paused for a moment and swallowed her fish. "Why do you ask?" Gloria asked.

"I just...want to know. You love pa right?" Arpheus asked.

"I love Mumble with all my heart." Gloria answered.

"And how does that feel?" Arpheus asked with a shy tone.

"When I'm with Mumble, I feel like I can do anything. Its just this comforting feeling inside that together we could get through any obstacle that presents itself. I guess I could describe as a warm feeling inside, when I think about him. Arpheus when you find love, you just know." Gloria explained.

Arpheus got a big smile all of a sudden.

"Do you-" Gloria was cut off by the sound of footsteps.

"Good morning pa!" Arpheus said.

Mumble looked at her with a confused face. "Arpheus what are you doing up so early?" Mumble asked with a small chuckle.

Arpheus just shrugged her shoulders.

"Well as long as you're awake, I want to show you something." Mumble said as he gestured for her to follow him. "Gloria do you want come along?" Mumble asked.

"No its okay." Gloria said.

"Aww come on it'll be fun." Mumble said.

"Mumble I-" Gloria was cutoff by the feeling of Mumble's flipper grasping her own.

"Come on honey, I promise you won't regret it." Mumble whispered.

"Okay." Gloria said in trance like voice.

The three penguins went out of the cave and took a short walk to nearby shore. The same shore Arpheus learned how to swim in. It was still dark outside and Mumble seemed to be looking off into nowhere.

"Pa what is it you wanted to show me?" Arpheus asked.

"Wait for it Arpheus." Mumble said as he kept looking onto the horizon.

Arpheus tried to look where Mumble was looking, but she still saw nothing. "What are you looking at pa?" Arpheus asked.

"Be patient Arpheus." Mumble said.

Arpheus continued looking off into the horizon. She saw a small glint of light peeking over the horizon. As she time passed, Arpheus noticed the light grew and expanded. It had pink and an orange tint t its color. The way it reflected off of the water was mesmerizing to Arpheus.

"Wow its so beautiful..." Arpheus said with a voice full of awe.

"It really is." Gloria said as she looked into Mumble's deep blue eyes. She laid her head on his shoulder.

Arpheus took her attention away from the sunrise and looked at Mumble and Gloria. They seemed so at peace with each other, it was something she longed for. The three penguins watched the sunrise together in each others' flippers. They were suddenly interrupted by the sound of a scream and a splash. The sounds were too weren't too far away from them. There was another splash and this time, they saw a body being flung out of the water. The body hit the ice with a sickening thud. Mumble and Gloria immediately started waddling towards the seemingly immobile body. Arpheus hesitated a bit, but was close behind them. Mumble and Gloria suddenly stopped, which made Arpheus bump into them.

"What's wrong?" Arpheus asked. She then saw two leopard seals out of the water. The leopard seals were obviously looking for the body.
"We have to help!" Arpheus said in urgent tone.

"Okay here's what we'll do. I'm going to distract the leopard seals and you two will go and help that penguin." Mumble said.

"But how are you going to distract the leopard seals." Arpheus asked.

"The only way I can." Mumble said in a low voice.

"No Mumble, there has to be another way." Gloria said.

"Gloria I-" Mumble was cut off.

"Mumble please don't." Gloria pleaded.

"Gloria its okay I've done this before." Mumble said.

"Not with two leopard seals!" Gloria pointed out. "I just don't want to lose you." Gloria said.

Mumble and Gloria then heard a splash of water right behind them. They immediately turned around to find that Arpheus wasn't there anymore.

"Arpheus! No you can't do this!" Mumble shouted.

"Arpheus!" Gloria called.

Their shouts were in vain, since Arpheus was now underwater. Mumble and Gloria heard the leopard seals scream something and saw them dive into the water.

"Mumble we have to help that penguin." Gloria said.

"But what about Arpheus?!" Mumble asked in a panicked tone.

"She's doing this, so that we can help that penguin. She's not little anymore Mumble." Gloria explained. Gloria was terribly worried about Arpheus, but she knew Arpheus had made her choice.

"Okay let's go." Mumble said.

Mumble and Gloria quickly made their way to the penguin. Mumble flipped the body, since they had to move him/her out of the area. When Mumble saw the penguin's face, a tear immediately made its way out of his ocean deep blue eyes.

Arpheus was currently having a hard time shaking the leopard sela off of her tail. She tried several things, such as turning sharply, to shake them off, but they were slowly gaining on her. Arpheus felt something sharp on her left foot, which she immediately retracted. She knew things were not looking good for her.

"What's wrong little girl. Can't you swim any faster?" One of the leopard seals taunted.

Arpheus looked back to see how close they were to her. She saw that they had caught up to her already; they were merely playing around with her at this point. Arpheus stopped swimming. The only thing she could do right now was hope for a miracle. Arpheus then saw what looked like two streams of water heading towards her. The seals couldn't see it, because it was behind them. The streams suddenly came in between Arpheus and the leopard seals. Arpheus immediately identified them.

"Hey stupid! Bet you can't catch me." Erik said, while slapping his tail.

"Oh an adult penguin. Well don't mind if I do." One the leopard seals said. Both of the leopard seals lunged and started chasing Erik, who swam away quickly.

"Arpheus are you okay?" Age asked as he turned around to look at her.

"Then c'mon! Let's go!" Age said.

That snapped Arpheus out of her shock and both penguins swam to shore at breakneck speeds. They quickly jumped out of the water and onto the ice.

"What about Erik!?" Arpheus asked.

Before Age could answer, both penguins heard a splash behind them. "I'm fine! Now let's go!. Erik shouted.

The three penguins waddled as fast as they could for a while. Arpheus was tired from all the swimming, so they had to stop and let her catch her breath.

"Thank you." Arpheus said breathlessly.

"For what?" Age asked.

"For coming to save me." Arpheus said.

"What are brothers for." Erik said with a smile.

"You were really brave today Arpheus." Age said.

"Yeah you were, but do you know how worried pa and ma were?!" Erik asked in strict tone.

"I-I'm sorry. I didn't mean to." Arpheus said.

"What you did was completely reckless, but...in this family we all do stuff like that." Erik said with a smile. " Just next time, be a little more careful." Erik said.

"Okay I promise I will." Arpheus said.

Arpheus looked at them with a smile of her own. They shared a chuckle as they walked home. It wasn't a long walk, so they got home fairly quickly. When Arpheus got home, Gloria embraced her immediately.

"Thank guin you're okay." Gloria said with tears streaming down her eyes.

"I didn't mean to worry you like that. I-I'm sorry." Arpheus said.

"Its okay. I should really be used to it by now though." Gloria said with a small chuckle. "With you, Mumble, Erik, and Age that is." Gloria explained.

The two penguins that were mentioned were had innocent smiles on their beaks. They all shared a laugh.

"So how is the penguin doing?" Arpheus asked.

Gloria's smile immediately turned into a frown and downcast expression. "I...think you should see for yourself." Gloria said ash she gestured for Arpheus to follow her.

Arpheus didn't say anything more and followed her. They went into the cave and into the main room. The unknown penguin was laid down on the ice and Mumble was standing right next to him/her. When Mumble saw Arpheus, he went up and hugged her.

"Did you get hurt Arpheus?" Mumble asked.

"No I'm okay pa." Arpheus said. "But what about that penguin?" Arpheus asked.

Mumble let go of her and looked at her with pure sadness in his eyes. "Umm she's not doing very well..." Mumble said.

"She?" Arpheus asked. When she got no response, she went up to the unknown penguin to see what had happened. To Arpheus, the sight was quite horrifying. Her feathers were all messed up, blood was splattered all over her mid body. She was filled with cuts and bruises, even some deep gashes on her hip. One of her fins was bent the wrong way and to top it all off, her beak was leaking blood. When Arpheus saw the female penguin's face, her blood ran cold. Here was her mother, on the bloody ice and seemingly lifeless. Arpheus beyond shock, too many thoughts running through her mind and too many emotions running through her body.

"M-Ma-a?" Arpheus said in a broken voice.

"MAA!" Arpheus cried out. Everything was now pouring out. Her tears staining her feathers and the ice below her. Her beautiful eyes distorted. Her will broken. She just wept over and over again. Arpheus wanted to run away, but found that she couldn't.

"Arpheus." Alexandria called with a weak voice.

"M-Ma? Arpheus said as she lowered her head down to her mother.

"I'm sorry." Alexandria whispered.

"N-no w-why are y-you sorry?" Arpheus said. She was breathing in quick and random breaths.

"For not being there for you." Alexandria replied.

"W-What? Ma you'll be fine I promise." Arpheus tried to assure.

"You're so beautiful Arpheus. You've grown so much." Alexandria whispered, while caressing her daughter's face with her good flipper.

"Ma please don't say t-that." Arpheus pleaded.

"Arpheus honey, we both know what's going to happen." Alexandria said and coughed up some blood onto the ice she was lying.

Arpheus broke down into more tears.

"Arpheus I want you to look at me." Alexandria said.

Arpheus wiped her tears and opened her eyes to look at her mother.

"Your eyes are just so mesmerizing Arpheus." Alexandria commented. "I want you to promise me something Arpheus." Alexandria said. "I want you to keep enjoying life Arpheus. Keep living your life Arphe-" Alexandria coughed up more blood.

"I p-promise m-ma." Arpheus said

"Thank you. Mumble can you come over here please?" Alexandria asked.

"Of course." Mumble said.

Alexandria was whispering something to Mumble. Even though, Arpheus was close enough to hear them she was too caught up in her own thoughts. She just didn't know what to do at this point. A very scratchy and dry cough caught her attention as she saw her mother spill more blood onto the ice.

"Arpheus just remember something." Alexandria said. "Just remember that I love you and don't let anyone t-tell you d-differently..." Alexandria said as she started losing consciousness.

"M-Ma? Please don't go!" Arpheus pleaded.

Her pleads were in vain. Alexandria took her last breath and drifted off into that peaceful eternal slumber.

"Ma? Please talk to me! Ma!" Arpheus shouted as she shook her mother's flipper.

Gloria touched Arpheus' shoulder. "I'm sorry Arpheus." Gloria said in a broken voice. "There's just nothing we can do." Gloria added.

"Please I just want to be alone." Arpheus said in a low voice.

Gloria was about to say something, until Age put a flipper on her shoulder. "Ma its better that she spends some time alone." Age said.

Gloria didn't argue and went along with Age. All penguins left the the cave to let Arpheus have her moment alone.

Arpheus was still trying to process everything that had happened. She was completely in shock what she just saw happen. Arpheus was in a huge internal conflict; she didn't how to feel. She was furious, broken, and depressed. She wanted to deny everything that just she just witnesses; she just wished it was all a dream. Arpheus cried silently. Arpheus heard footsteps behind, but didn't bother turning around to see who it was.

"Please leave me alone." Arpheus pleaded.

"Arpheus I know its hard, what you're going through." Age said.

"How do you know?" Arpheus said in salty tone.

"I know, because I lost my family when I was young. I was just a chick, when it happened." Age said sorrowfully.

"You did?" Arpheus asked.

Age nodded.

"I just don't know what I'm going to do..." Arpheus said.

"If there is anything I learned from that is that you have to keep going. Not only for yourself, but for them as well Arpheus. Your mother, being the great penguin that she was, wouldn't want to see you like this. She wants you to be the best penguin you can be." Age said.

Arpheus turned and hugged her brother. She buried her face in his feathers and let everything out at that point; her frustration, her anger, her sadness, and her regret. Tears came pouring out of her eyes. She then felt more flippers wrap around her. Arpheus lifted her eye's to see, who it was. She was shocked to see Erik, Mumble, Gloria, Hayley, and Bo.

"We're all here for you Arpheus." Gloria said.

"Family is always there for each other." Bo said.

Arpheus couldn't help, but cry harder, not out of sadness necessarily. They all shed tears together as they all embraced each other. After a while, the family released each other from the embrace.

"Do you feel better?" Hayley asked.

"Y-Yeah." Arpheus said with a bit of hiccup. "Where's Jake?" Arpheus asked. She had completely forgotten about the showcase.

"He's with Mrs. Viola rehearsing the showcase." Mumble answered. He then realized what he said. "The showcase!" Mumble shouted.

"Oh no! How am I going to-" Arpheus was cut off.

"Don't worry about that. My mother will understand." Bo said with a wink. "But you still should participate." Bo added.

"I don't know..." Arpheus said unsure of herself.

"That's a great idea. Trust me some dancing will make you feel better." Age said.

"But I don't know the routine." Arpheus said.

"Just improvise." Erik said. "You're probably the best dancer there, so you'll be fine." Erik explained.

"Come on Arpheus what do you say?" Mumble said.

Arpheus remembered the promise she made to her mother. "Yeah let's go." Arpheus said.

They ran their as fast as they could. There was an immense crowd and Arpheus just hoped she wasn't too late. They made their way to the front, where they saw that they had made in the nick of time. Mrs. Viola was still talking to the class.

"Arpheus follow me quick." Bo said.

The two female penguins made their way down a small hill and to Mrs. Viola.

"Arpheus where have you been?" Mrs. Viola asked. "Bo?" Mrs. Viola said in a confused tone.

"Ma I need to talk to you." Bo said.

"I'm busy right now." Mrs. Viola said.

"Its about Arpheus." Bo said.

Mrs. Viola sighed. "Alright." Mrs. Viola said. She eyed Arpheus before following Bo.

Arpheus was a little bit lost. She had no idea what was going on, so she just stood where she was. She was just looking around, when she spotted Jake, who was waddling towards her.

"Arpheus where have you been!?" Jake asked.

"Its a long story, but what am I supposed to be doing?" Arpheus asked.

"Well you were supposed to be the lead dancer, but I don't know now." Jake said.

"Wait I thought Eileen was the dancer." Arpheus said in a confused tone.

"Yeah there was a slight change. The song was apparently to fast for Eileen to handle, so now she will be doing a duet with Aaron instead." Jake explained.
"And since you were the second choice for lead dancer, Mrs. Viola announced you as the dancer." Jake said.

Arpheus didn't have time to think about what Jake just said, because Mrs. Viola and Bo were approaching them.

"Arpheus I'm sorry, but you can't perform." Mrs. Viola said. "You just don't know the routine. I wish I could let you dance, but I can't. Mrs. Viola explained.

"But why can't you? You know I can do it." Arpheus said.

"Apparently this is some stupid tradition now." Bo said bitterly.

"Boadicea!" Mrs. Viola said sternly.

Bo just rolled her eyes.

"Its okay I understand." Arpheus said. She knew she would have just dragged the class down.

Arpheus followed Bo back to where the rest of the family was on the sidelines. She was so close to where the show case was going to be performed, she might as well have been in it. Everyone suddenly quieted down as the tap dancers started setting a beat. (Don't go breaking my heart- Kiki Dee and Elton John)

Aaron: Don't go breaking my heart
Eileen: I couldn't if I tried
Aaron: Honey, if I get restless...
Eileen: Baby, you're not that kind

Arpheus couldn't listen any longer. For some reason, she couldn't stand seeing Eileen singing with Aaron. Especially, when Eileen kept throwing smirks her way. On top of that, she was all over Aaron throughout the song. Aaron and Eileen were dancing in the middle of the small area, while dancers and back up singers were a bit behind them.

Aaron: Don't go breaking my heart
Eileen: You take the weight off me
Aaron: Honey, when you knock on my door
Eileen: I gave you my key

When Aaron sang the first line, he happened to look in Arpheus' direction. He was surprised to see her there and threw her a confused look. Arpheus just looked down in response. Aaron was snapped back into the song, when Eileen pulled him to her.

Aaron & Eileen: Nobody knows it
Aaron: When I was down
Eileen: I was your clown
Aaron & Eileen: Nobody knows it
Aaron: Right from the start
Eileen: I gave you my heart
I gave you my heart

Flipper in flipper, Aaron and Eileen began dancing a normal paced routine. Arpheus lifted her face to see them dancing together like a couple. It literally broke her. Tears slid down her eyes slowly and quietly. When Aaron got a second look at her over Eileen's shoulder, his heart stopped. He knew something was wrong. He let go of Eileen and didn't sing the last line of the verse.

"Stop." Aaron told the dancers. The dancers kept tapping though. "Hey! What don't you get about stop!" He shouted at the dancers.

"Aaron what's-" Eileen was cut off.

"This isn't right. I'm sorry, but it just doesn't feel right." Aaron said. "Arpheus." Aaron called.

Arpheus was so shocked she couldn't move.

"Aaron are you serious?! What can she do?" Eileen asked in a bewildered tone.

Aaron just shot her a glare and started tapping a rhythm. He wasn't the best dancer, but Arpheus and Mumble had taught him some tricks. (Let me love you - Ne Yo)

Aaron: Much as you blame yourself, you can't be blamed for the way you feel
Had no example of a love, that was even remotely real
How can you understand something that you never had
Ooh baby if you let me, I can help you out with all of that

Aaron was clearly dedicating the song to Arpheus. As he was singing and dancing, he was also often gesturing to her with his flipper. Arpheus was just looking at him with wide eyes.

Aaron: Girl let me love you
And I will love you
Until you learn to love yourself
Girl let me love you
And all your trouble
Don't be afraid, girl let me help
Girl let me love you
And I will love you
Until you learn to love yourself
Girl let me love you
A heart of numbness, gets brought to life

I'll take you there

Aaron hit the beat hard and switched to normal paced hip hop routine. He raised his voice to a higher pitch and volume. He noticed that he had attracted a few back up dancers from his class, so he let them continue with the beat. He mainly focused on singing and his hip hop choreography. No one, not even Aaron, knew what they were doing. Aaron was just singing the song that came him. Aaron held the last line for a while and then sped up the beat. The back up dancers followed suit.

Aaron: Girl let me love you
Girl let me love you baby, oh
Girl let me love yo
Girl let me love you baby
Girl let me love you
Let me love you, let me love you, oh

With the new speed, Aaron switched to a fast paced hip hop routine in which the back up dancers would assist him with. Aaron looked back slightly to see if the back up dancers were following him, which they were. Aaron suddenly stopped dancing and the backup dancers, thanks to their previous experience, immediately slowed down the beat.

Aaron: I can see the pain behind your eyes
It's been there for quite a while

Aaron made his way towards Arpheus. At the end of the last line, he was right in front of her looking down into her beautiful eyes.

Aaron: I just wanna be the one to remind what it is to smile
I would like to show you what true love can really do

Aaron wiped the tears off of her eyes and took her flipper in his. He tugged at it a bit signaling her to come with him. She slowly stepped out with him, but quickly found herself being pulled and spun. She ended up falling into Aaron's arms as he was singing the last line. Arpheus looked into his golden brown eyes and immediately forgot everything she had been worrying about. Aaron spun her out of it and let go of her.

Aaron: Girl let me love you
And I will love you
Until you learn to love yourself
Girl let me love you
And all your trouble

Aaron slid back to his original position and Arpheus followed suit. They were now dancing next to each other as the back up dancers followed their moves. Arpheus suddenly had the unbearable urge to sing.

Aaron: Don't be afraid, girl let me help
Girl let me love you
And I will love you
Until you learn to love yourself
Girl let me love you
A heart of numbness, gets brought to life
I'll take you there

Aaron took both of her flippers this time and pulled her close to him. Arpheus knew what to do. The two penguins were now dancing in the very middle of the colony without a care in the world.

Aaron: Girl let me love you baby
Girl let me love you
Let me love you, let me love you baby
Girl let me love you
Girl let me love you baby
Girl let me love you
Let me love you, girl let me love you baby

Both penguins slid to their original positions, which was slightly in front of the back up singers. As he was holding the last line, Aaron went out to the middle and turned around to face Arpheus. The backup dancers backed off completely and now only Arpheus was creating the beat.

Aaron: For every heart that beats
For every heart that beats
For every heart that beats, heart that beats...

Arpheus was following Aaron's beat. As Aaron progressed through the lines, the beat got faster and faster. It got to the point, where Aaron couldn't keep up anymore, but Arpheus was still going. As Aaron sang the last line, Arpheus' feet looked like blurs, while she was tapping.

Aaron: Girl let me love you
And I will love you
Until you learn to love yourself
Girl let me love you
And all your trouble
Don't be afraid, girl let me help
Girl let me love you
And I will love you
Until you learn to love yourself
Girl let me love you
A heart of numbness, gets brought to life
I'll take you there

The backup dancers jumped back and the beat slowed down to its normal pace again. Aaron didn't go back next to Arpheus, instead he stayed facing her as he got progressively closer. Aaron completely stopped dancing as he sang the last three lines. He took hold of one of her flippers and looked into her beautiful eyes as he sang to her the last line.

Everyone went ballistic. The crowd was cheering and clapping. To Arpheus and Aaron, though, it was like no one was there. Arpheus then did something very unexpected. She reached out and kissed Aaron. Aaron was shocked, but returned it. The kiss didn't last long though.

"Aaron! I told you to stay away from her!" A shrill voice screamed from the crowd. The crows immediately quieted down.

Aaron quickly turned around to see Stefan and Julie quickly making their way through the crowd and approaching them.

"Aaron I remember specifically telling you t stay away from her." Stefan said in a cold voice.

"But pa...I lo-" Aaron was cut off.

"Don't you dare even say it! You can't love 'that'." Julie said as she pointed at Arpheus.

"Hey! You better take that back Julie!" Bo said as she came to Arpheus' help. The rest of the family was just behind her including Jake, Gabriel, and Kourtney.

Arpheus didn't understand what was going on, but when Julie called her by that label the pieces feel together. She looked at Arpheus with sadness in her eyes.

"So this is why..." Arpheus whispered.

"No Arpheus this isn't what you think." Aaron said quickly.

"This is why you've been avoiding me..." Arpheus whispered.

"I...I'm sorry." Aaron said in a defeated tone. He turned around to face her. He turned back around to face his parents.

"Aaron we're leaving now!" Stefan said.

"Pa-." Aaron tried to protest, but was cut off again.

"I said now Aaron!" Stefan said.

"I-" Aaron tried again, but to no avail.

"Aaron listen to your father." Julie said.

"NO! You're going to listen to what I have to say!" Aaron screamed.

Stefan and Julie were shocked beyond belief. Aaron never talked back or shouted at them.

"I LOVE her! And nothing is going to change that! She is the joy in my life. When I'm with her I feel truly happy, as if nothing could go wrong." Aaron said as turned around to look at her.

To his disbelief, she wasn't there anymore. Arpheus had quietly sneaked out and ran away.

"No..." Aaron whispered. "How could you do this to me? Your own son?" Aaron asked.

"Good riddance. Let her go! We don't need freaks." Julie said.

"All my life I have respected you two. I've looked up to you and I never argued a single word you said. But now you've gone too far! She is not a freak, she is the most beautiful penguin in my eyes. The way she looks, talks, laughs, and even walks. Everything about her is so perfect." Aaron said. "Whether you like it or not, I'm going after her. I will do ANYTHING to bring her back, even at the risk of my own life." Aaron said in a cold voice. He was beyond furious at this point. With that last comment he dashed off into the crowd to try and find Arpheus.

Arpheus was already at the very edge of Emperor Land. Her eyes were puffy from all the tears she had shed today. Arpheus gave up on herself. She admitted to being a complete failure, whose only purpose seems to be to hold other penguins back. She was just a burden. Arpheus had exiled herself to prevent from dragging anyone else down with her. Arpheus reached the basin, where Mumble had first found her. Arpheus had not time to have a flashback though. She was ready to jump in and swim away.

"Arpheus!" Aaron called.

Arpheus was so surprised that, when she went to turn around she fell on her back. This gave Aaron the time he needed to catch up to her.

"Arpheus are you okay?" Aaron said as he helped her up.

"Why did you follow me?" Arpheus said as she turned away from him.

"Arpheus I love you and I always have." Aaron said. "I can say those words to you." Aaron added.

"Aaron can't you see I'm only dragging you down?" Arpheus asked in an static tone.

"You'll never drag me down Arpheus. You always inspire me to be better." Aaron said as grabbed one of her flippers. "Wherever you're going I'm coming with you." Aaron said.

"Please Aaron...don't." Arpheus said coldly. "All I've done for you is embarrass you at the showcase, make you fight with your parents, and now you're about to leave everything behind just to follow me." Arpheus said.

"You're all I need." Aaron whispered.

"Aaron you have a future over there! Are you really going to throw that away for me?" Arpheus asked.

"Yes." Aaron answered immediately.

"Aaron...I don't...l-love y-you." Arpheus said. She could barely get those words out.

Aaron was just shell-shocked. She might as well have pushed him off a cliff to his very death. He had no idea how to respond to that. His heart had just been shattered by the love of his life. "B-But-"Aaron choked up.

"I'm s-sorry." Arpheus said. "I'm sure you'll find someone better than m-me."

Arpheus wept a bit, turned around, and kissed Aaron once again. It was a deep loving kiss that lasted for quite a while. Aaron was completely lost in his bliss and confusion. Arpheus pulled away and quickly jumped into the basin. Aaron realized he had been tricked and went to go after her. She swam away as quickly as she could; she was not about to let Aaron throw away his life for heard a splash behind her, but she knew it was too late for him to follow her. She knew where she was going, while he had no idea. Arpheus knew it was going to a long trip to where she was going.

After hours of swimming, Arpheus finally saw ice ahead. She jumped out of the water and slid to a stop. Arpheus looked at the sky and saw that it was getting dark fast. She looked around and saw what looked like hills in the distance. She immediately headed towards them. As Arpheus was walking through the hills, she was feeling tired and completely broken. Her mother came into her thoughts and the song her mother used to sing to her came into her heart. She thought of Aaron next, then she opened her beak. (Bridge of Light - P!nk)

Arpheus: Just when you think
Hope is lost
And giving up
Is all you got,
Blue turns black,
Your confidence is cracked,
There seems no turning back from here

Arpheus slowly got comfortable with her voice. She realized singing really was fun.

Arpheus: Sometimes there isn't an obvious explanation
Why the holiest hearts can feel the strongest palpitations

Arpheus looked at the night filled sky. As she sang the last line, she started to see some multicolored lights streaking across the sky.

Arpheus: That's when you can build a bridge of light,
That's what turns the wrongs all right
That's when you can't give up the fight

Arpheus raised her voice effortlessly. She then saw a beautiful arrangement of multicolored lights appear in the sky. It was absolutely dazzling to her, it was as if the lights were dancing to the rhythm of her song. Her voice echoed throughout the hills.

"Well, well, well. A pretty lady with a pretty voice." A male voice said.

Arpheus immediately stopped singing and turned around to face the unknown penguin.

"Umm thanks I guess." Arpheus said. "Who are you?" Arpheus asked.

"The name's Cloud. And who might you be?" Cloud asked in a sort of seductive tone.

"I-I'm Arpheus." Arpheus answered.

"Ahh a pretty name, a pretty voice, and pretty eyes." Cloud said.

Arpheus wasn't sure of what to say.

"Cloud stop bothering her!" A female voice shouted as she approached him.

"I wasn't bothering her! You're just jealous I like someone else." Cloud sneered.

"Yeah okay." Vasquez said with sarcasm. "So what's your name?" Vasquez asked.

"A-Arpheus."

"And what brings you here?" Vasquez asked.

"I'm just running away..." Arpheus said.

"Geez stop being so dramatic! It's not like your mother died!" Cloud said.

Arpheus immediately broke down into more tears, if she had any left. "Y-Yes s-she d-did. Earlier t-today." Arpheus cried out. She almost fell from the exhaustion she was feeling, but she caught herself.

Vasquez walked up to Arpheus and laid a flipper on her shoulder. "I'm so sorry that happened, but why did you run away? Vasquez asked. "You have beautiful eyes by the way." Vasquez commented.

Arpheus sniffled a bit and wiped the tears off of her eyes. "W-well I left, because I was just a burden to everyone. Aaron tried to follow me, but I lied to him and said I didn't love him." Arpheus explained in a depressed voice.

"Who's Aaron?" Cloud asked with a chuckle.

"The penguin that I love." Arpheus answered.

"So how were a burden? I heard your voice and, honestly, I haven't heard any other like it." Vasquez asked.

"Thanks, but I'm mainly a dancer." Arpheus said with a downcast attitude.

Vasquez looked at Arpheus with a shocked expression. "Really?! Tap dancing? Can you show me?" Vasquez asked.

"Why are we wasting our time like this?" Cloud asked.

"Don't listen to him. Just show me." Vasquez said.

"O-okay" Arpheus said.

Arpheus closed her eyes and tried to think of a song, but none would come up. She was just tired and there were too many thoughts in her mind. Arpheus then got an idea.

"T-This is the last song Aaron sang to me." Arpheus said.

She started tapping slowly and, not long after, sped up quite a bit. Vasquez was surprised that such a young penguin could dance so well. Arpheus then really hit it hard, when she started tapping the rhythm as fast as she could. She cut it short there.

"Wow...You have an amazing talent." Vasquez said.

"Thank you." Arpheus said.

"Are we done Vasquez?" Cloud asked as he looked at her with a bored expression.

Vasquez ignored Cloud. "Say Arpheus, do you have anywhere to go?" Vasquez asked.

"No not really." Arpheus said.

"Well how would you like to come with us?" Vasquez asked. She saw that Arpheus had a confused look on her face. "We are part of an elite group of performers and I think you would fit in well." Vasquez explained.

"I already told you I'm just a burden." Arpheus explained.

"Just try out for boss. I bet he'll like you." Vasquez said. "If boss let me join, he will definitely let you join!" Vasquez said with a smile. "Besides you need a home right now." Vasquez said with a comforting voice..

"Well I don't mind one more lady." Cloud said with a snicker.

Arpheus had nothing to lose at this point, so she agreed to go along with the two penguins. With a shattered heart, Arpheus left with the two penguins hoping to mend these old wounds.