"The Curse, Part 5"
Blaque had taken the form of a demon. Red eyes, bat wings on his back, claws, the works. Nathan didn’t waste any time, and already had his gear out. He took one look at Blaque and said, “Not bad. I think it’s an improvement.”
It seemed that Nathan wasn’t very afraid of the new Blaque. Either that or he was trying to hide his fear. Blaque wasn’t particularly happy about the comment. “You insolent fool! I’ll show you an improvement!” He then took to the air.
The battle had begun. Blaque was flying around trying to claw into Nathan, and Nathan was dodging his attacks and trying to shoot him. Nathan didn’t seem to be used to using a gun. He was missing more often than not. I wished I could say the same about Blaque in his new form. He seemed to be able to move and fly around in it like he has been a demon his entire life. It was then that I remembered that it was the same case with myself when I first turned into a dragon. I had Aura’s Jewel close at hand, so I was able to move around easily, until Aura took the jewel from me. I looked, and saw that Blaque was holding tightly to the jewel. I didn’t see any way that the jewel could be taken from him.
It didn’t take long before Nathan ran out of bullets. I knew he was in big trouble. “Just run, Nathan! The door hasn’t been locked, and it’s too big for Blaque to fit through!”
But Nathan just stood there. “I can’t run. I haven’t lost yet, and I still have to get the jewel.” Just then Blaque took advantage of Nathan’s disposition and tried to turn him into something. A ray of light shot out of the jewel towards Nathan. But Nathan quickly flung the now-useless gun into the light, and to our luck, the light deflected off of it. And the light continued bouncing off the walls until it finally hit someone. It just missed the now-parrot King Rechin, went right through me, and finally hit Blaque. He had turned into a monkey, and started falling from his flight, dropping the jewel in the process.
Nathan immediately started to take advantage of the situation, and took out a grenade. “Wait, Nathan, get the jewel!” But it was too late. Nathan had already pulled the clip, and had to throw the grenade. He saw that Blaque was going after the jewel, and threw it in his path. Before it blew, I noticed that Blaque was moving quite well for not having the jewel. But it was most likely because monkeys are so similar in form to humans. Unfortunately, this enabled him to get to the jewel and change back to a demon before the grenade blew.
Nathan knew he was in trouble, and started to run, with me right behind him. The small doorway didn’t stop Blaque. He shrunk down to human size and chased after Nathan. Along the way, Nathan encountered one of the guards, and was able to grab the gun from him. The chase continued until we reached the castle courtyard. There was no way out besides over the wall, and Nathan didn’t have time to try. Blaque came out and changed back to his giant size, and the battle resumed.
The battle here was fought similarly to the one earlier. I was able to get a better look at the action from behind Nathan, and noticed that the jewel had a constant light glow. It wasn’t supposed to be glowing unless some sort of transformation was being done. Then I saw Blaque take a few hits, and watched as Aura’s Jewel did it’s magic and healed the bullet wounds. “Nathan, he’s using the jewel to heal himself! Your shots aren’t working!”
Big mistake. Nathan took his eyes off of Blaque, and turned towards me. Nathan quickly realized his mistake and tried to turn back, but it was too late; Blaque had already seen the opening and was in the middle of his attack. Nathan was able to dodge a little to keep himself from getting clawed into, but was unable to dodge the entire attack. Nathan was hit hard, and flew right into me. I shut my eyes at the sudden pain I felt. Then I realized that I shouldn’t have felt anything. I felt different somehow. And yet somehow familiar. I opened my eyes and looked at my hand. It was a normal human hand! I was now a living human being!
Just then Blaque came down from another attack…against me! I saw it coming, and dodged out of his way. During the dodge, I quickly hit him in the back of the neck, and he came crashing down into the ground, with a cry of pain. While he was down tending at his neck, I focused my attention on my new form. I realized what was going on when I saw Nathan’s gun in my other hand. I didn’t turn into a human; I was now in Nathan’s body! I also noticed a couple other things. I hadn’t completely taken over Nathan’s body for one. I noticed that my thoughts were different than normal, with a little bit of knowledge that I hadn’t known before. Our minds were now one and the same. The other thing I noticed was, though I was human, I still had my dragon strength, and senses. Essentially I was a dragon in human form.
I, or rather we, turned towards Blaque, knowing that we could use this newfound power to defeat him. He had already recovered, and was looking right at us. “Where did you get such a huge amount of strength? No human should have that power! I don’t know how you did it, but I won’t let you win that easily!” The jewel started to glow again, and Blaque started to grow in size once more. When the transformation was over, he had turned into a giant snake. But to his surprise, he found himself unable to move in his new form. “What happened? How do you move in thissss form?”
We looked around, and saw that the jewel had fallen on the ground. We quickly threw a couple of gas canisters at him, to conceal our movement. We quickly went after the jewel, grabbed it, and fled. When the smoke cleared, he was still unable to move around. We had won, and decided that Blaque needed to know about his mistake. “Isn’t it obvious? You’re no longer holding the jewel. Without the jewel, you aren’t used to being a snake. Now then, I think it’s time you took a form that won’t be causing any trouble.” We held up the jewel, and turned Blaque into a rat.
Before we left, Blaque spoke up in his tiny voice. “You think you’ve won, have you? But you’ll soon find out that I have had the last laugh after all.”
While he spoke, the parrot King Rechin also came along. “Squaaawk! Great, now you can change me back!”
Instead of doing so, we started heading out. “Sorry, but I think you are better off in your new form also. Don’t worry, maybe after you explain everything, they’ll still let a parrot run the kingdom.” As we were heading out, we separated into human and ghost once more, and our thoughts and memories separated as well. Nathan paused for a moment, then continued on. As I followed, I couldn’t help but feel that we were being watched. I looked around, but couldn’t see anybody besides the rat general and the birdbrain king, and I didn’t see any one of those “cameras” that Nathan had told me about. I figured that it was just my imagination, and we started heading back to Mt. Kolz.
As we neared the shrine, I was beginning to wonder what would happen once we returned the jewel. Would I resume my duties and guard the jewel, or would I be set free, and Blaque would take my place? “No, it can’t be!” Nathan just blurted it out. I looked, and saw what used to be the shrine that held Aura’s Jewel. It was now in rubble. So this is what Blaque was talking about. But how did he know we were going to return it? Whatever the case, we had failed to return the jewel.
“Do not despair.” We turned around, and saw Aura standing behind us. “You have not failed to retrieve my jewel. I knew that this would happen, and have thought ahead. Your quest is not over. Take the jewel, and head West. Eventually, you will come to the Valley of Borea. It is there that you will find my sister. Hand her the jewel; she will know what to do.” She then disappeared in a ray of light like she usually does. As usual, she didn’t hold a conversation. She seemed always to the point.
“Was that…?” Nathan didn’t have to finish asking. I knew what he was wondering, and nodded a yes. We started climbing back down the mountain, when Nathan stopped. “I just realized, we’ve been through a lot, and it seems we’re going to be through a lot more. And yet, I don’t even know your name.”
My name. Not since before this curse began has my name been used. I thought about it for a moment, and decided that it should stay that way. “As far as I’m concerned, I lost my name when I lost my humanity. You may call me whatever you wish.”
“Well, I guess I might as well keep it simple. As far as everyone knows, there aren’t any more dragons in this world today. So I think I’ll just call you ‘Dragon’.” It was a little too simple. But I knew that my name no longer mattered that much, so I gave a nod of approval. And so we started off towards the Valley of Borea. We had no idea what was going to happen along the way, nor did we know exactly where or how far this valley was. But we did know one thing. Like it or not, our adventures had only just begun.