Chapter 11: The City under the water and the Sea Temple
The sun had just started to set when they arrived at the location Lily directed them, following the light of her tattoo. “It’s just a sand hill, nothing special” Dings said
“Back at that storm I felt like swimming at the sea, or to put it better I was one with the water. This same vibration I’m getting from here”. Lily explained.
“That means we are close, but from where should we start?” and Clyone looked at the sand hills around her
“I have an idea” Limon said “if Lily can create and control winds why not creating a sand typhoon? Perhaps she could clean the sand from a specific spot and see what happens”
“Yeah and then we should ask her to clean the whole desert! Are you stupid Limon?” and Clyone pulled his left wing while Monica was giving water to Minto and Lily.
“That’s not a bad idea” Monica said and pulled her sister from her hand and together they climbed on Limon’s back
“But I am not sure if I can do it”
“Just try and see what happens, ok?” Monica told her with exhortation. The dragon took off and they started to fly around the sand hill; Lily begun gathering the winds around the spot she could feel the strongest vibration and she waved her ribbon creating a typhoon which pushed away all the sand revealing under the sand hill a statue. Everyone then approached it taking a better look. It was a woman’s statue dressed with royal clothing holding on her left hand a flower and on the other hand an opened shell with a pearl on it. Minto examined the statue as Limon, Monica and Lily reached them
“This statue is Clomin the Sea Goddess!” he said with surprise
“How can you be so sure?” Darth asked him.
“She holds her symbols: the sea flower with the 20 petals and a shell with a pearl!”
“Why do I think I am listening to Fin right now?” Dings commented and Minto looked at him annoyed.
“But sure it is really old, perhaps hundreds of years” Monica said touching its rough surface.
Lily came closer and with her left hand she touched the spot where her heart was. Suddenly the ground under their feet fell and they started to fall deep inside the darkness under them. But instead of dying from the fall they reached the ground softly falling on it. It was dark and no one could see the other. Lily called their names and felt Darth’s hand holding hers.
“Are you alright?”
“I am fine but I can’t see the others”
“Don’t worry I can “see” them” and she guided him following their Heart Lights. Limon had fell on Monica, Dings was covered with dirt while Clyone and Minto had found each other. They gathered together and tried to find a way to see into the darkness. Darth took out from his small bag some Light Stones and threw them at the air. They exploded into tiny pieces and flew into all directions; what they saw was beyond their imagination. In front of them there was an underground sea surrounded from old destroyed buildings, a whole city could be seen inside the water while the water’s surface was still without moving, creating the thought that it was a mirror and not water. Small golden butterflies were flying imperiously near the water’s surface briefly touching it. The scenery left them speechless and when Lily started to walk toward the water they came back to their senses: “There is a song coming from that direction” and she showed them the other side of the crystal sea
“We can’t hear it, what does it say?” Minto asked her
But instead of answer Lily started to walk on the water’s surface without sinking. “Come” she said with calm voice and with hesitation they followed her, walking on a line. “Darth, does she realize where we are?” Monica asked him while she walked behind him
“It seems she knows where she is going.” But he couldn’t answer truthfully.
“She looks like hypnotized” Clyone said and Dings agreed with her
They walked on the water following Lily’s lead; they saw the city under their feet, completely covered with water, fish and giant whales swimming under them. The butterflies surrounded Lily and she with no expression on her face moved her ribbon releasing them and their lights flew to the roof of this giant cave
“Look at that! They passed though the stone wall!” Clyone said amazed
“Does that mean that we are now walking under the Desert?” Minto said
“Really clever decision: they hid her temple under the ground, where no one could find her.” Limon said
“Look at the murals! They are shining!” Monica commented with excitement.
“These are special murals; they are created from the paint the creators made from their Heart Stones.” Darth told her.
“What? How can they create something so beautiful?”
“They extract their feelings and creating inspirations transforming them into glowing paint. When the mural is complete the carvings and the colors remain eternal on the walls in order to remind the next generations about their glorious past”
“The last time we saw something like that was at Selemir wasn’t it Darth?” Limon asked him but he looked at Lily.
Lily had stopped walking and came back to her senses; she turned to them looking with a puzzled expression. They told her that she guided them here walking on the water
“That’s strange I don’t remember walking here but I feel like this is the right place” she said
“That’s because I guided you here” a voice was heard and big bubbles trapped everyone expect Lily, floating mid air. Then a small building emerged from the water made of corals, decorated with pearls and murals showing mermaids swimming and many sea creatures portrayed at the Temple’s walls. A woman came out from the Temple’s entrance; she was wearing a beautiful dress covered with pearls, her blue hair was decorated with sea flowers and her eyes had a deep sapphire color.
“I welcome you to the Sea Temple Young Priestess. I am Clomin Ruler of the Seas, Protector of the sea life.”
“I am Lily Williams, and I have come to borrow your strength Lady Clomin.” Lily introduced herself “Please release my friends they have done nothing to you.”
“I cannot do that. They are going to pay for what their kinds have done to me!”
“The actions of their kinds have nothing to do with them!” she shouted to her “Everyone worked hard in order to come here! Can’t you be merciful?” and at the same time she tried to free them but without result.
“It’s no use! My Brother’s powers cannot reach this place but I can be merciful young Priestess.” And with a move from her hand the bubbles came closer to Lily creating a circle around her. Monica was shouting to her, begging her to flee, but she couldn’t hear her neither could hear the others, only the voices of Clomin and Lily could be heard inside her head like telepathy. Dings was trying to bite the bubble but it was impossible, Clyone, Minto and Limon were shouting at Lily too; only Darth was sitting calmly inside his bubble holding a dagger and trying to pierce the bubble but no matter how many times he stabbed it the bubble was becoming thicker and thicker.
Lily could feel their Heart Lights; fear consumed them and worry about her safety.
“Two choices my Priestess: Kill them with your powers and then my strength will be yours or die at their place!” she said with calm voice.
Just for a moment everyone became silent at the hearing of her words and immediately they started shouting with all their strength. Lily heard her words and lowered her head. She bowed before the Goddess and tears started to fall. “I can’t do that Clomin. I would never sacrifice my friends for your power. I promised…I promised Azure that I will always protect those around me, Darvils, Denmorians even mermaids. And I never break my promises.”
“Is that your choice?” Clomin said and Lily responded by moving her head.
“So be it then” and she moved her hands the waters became wild as a pillar of water created; it covered Lily’s body and together they disappeared underwater. Clomin dove into the water leaving the others inside their bubbles speechless as they witnessed Lily’s death.
Monica screamed crying at the same time, Dings and Limon had lowered their heads murmuring prayers while Clyone and Minto remained silent. Darth was still looking at the spot Lily disappeared and rage consumed him. He remembered her words back at the ship, her tears of sorrow and the courage with which she decided their safety over hers. He materialized a sword and begun stabbing again and again the same spot∙ the others saw him and begun doing the same; Monica summoned “Bloody Tears” and fired as many arrows as she could think. “There’s no way I will stay here” she thought and looked at Darth. “Wait for me Lily!”
“I can’t breathe! My lungs are filling with water! I should already be dead but then why… why am I still alive?”
“It is a great sin to kill my own children, but they leave me no choice. Why Lily, why did you choose your friends lives instead of yours? Are they so precious to you?” Clomin asked me with anger and I felt the water around me pulling me deeper and deeper. I knew that feeling! It was the same when I was into the storm back at “Dimitra”! I stretched my hands and I started to swim back at the surface as long as I could still hold. “It’s useless!” and Clomin pulled me back. When I felt something like a hand grabbing me a turned and hugged her tightly. I could feel her Heart Light; calm and at the same time wild like the sea. “Had you always been alone inside that temple haven’t you Clomin? Did you know that the mermaid in order to protect you became flesh eaters keeping away all those who tried to find you? But you see no matter how strong you are, you can’t be alone. You became angry with every single person in Denmor trying to release your own sadness and solitude.” And I felt hands, slim gentle hands holding me tightly. “Will you take me away from my solitude?”
“Come with me Clomin, let’s go back to those who are waiting for us!” and I smiled at her.
“Thank you Lily, thank you”.
They managed to break free thanks to Darth who broke out first, then Monica used her arrows and now everyone were looking for a way to dive into the water. Monica tried to jump from the air falling from Limon, but she just fell softly on the water without sinking, and Dings tried to dig the water only to douse himself. “It’s hopeless! It feels like we are standing on an unbreakable mirror!” Minto said and Clyone punched him.
“Don’t give me this bullshit! We will not leave without Lily!”
Darth had put his ear on the water trying to listen what was happening with his eyes closed. Suddenly he felt his neck hot from the enchanted butterfly and a tremor shook them and huge waves carried them away. The waters started to move to the stone floor breaking free outside and flooding the whole desert. They were all carried on the waves but they could feel like leaning on a soft bed. They couldn’t understand how they were swimming on a moving sea until Darth’s hand was grabbed from Lily as she pulled him and made him stand up. His shock and happiness left him speechless; “Come on Darth, let’s run!” she said laughing and they started running on the waves heading to the direction their ship was. Lily was swinging her ribbon creating loops, curves and hitting the waves just like a driver uses his whip driving his horses. “How… how did you escape?” he shouted at her
“Did you really think I was done for? Come on I always keep my promises don’t I?”
“For a moment, YES!”
They caught Monica, who was holding Dings on her arms, they found Limon trying to stay on the surface with Clyone and Minto on his back and everyone together they reached the shore from where they begun their journey. The waters became one with the sea and, the now longer string of Lily’s ribbon, transformed back, leaving everyone behind standing at the shore. “Lily!” and Monica hugged her sister and they fell on the ground
“It’s ok Monica I am here now, hey, don’t cry” and she patted on her back. Clyone and Minto were frozen from the shock and they asked Limon if it was always this way “Most of the times” and he went to Lily licking her cheek and receiving a punch from Monica and Darth at the same time. They turned at the side their ship was only to find it surround it from sea beasts. Clyone left a scream and a gunshot was heard.
Chapter 12: The Mermaid of Sorrow
Elemor entered the throne room chained from his arms to his feet. He saw King Nevol waiting for him in front of a big communicator mirror who was lying at the room’s floor. He called him to come closer and he took a closer look at the mirror. There was a ship, surrounded from sea monsters and Nagia was standing at the deck’s bridge. “She has done well, don’t you think so?” Nevol asked him. “So he called me in order form me to observe the Priestess’s death. What a sick person” he thought and he got angry with himself allowing serving a person like him. He saw Darth and the others surrounded from the crew heading toward the ship and he leaned to observe better.
“Why is the crew against us?” Monica whispered as they walked to the ship while the crew was aiming at them.
“Is it mutiny? Or perhaps…” and Darth looked at the creatures which had surrounded the ship. The gunshot earlier startled everyone as the crew members told them to freeze.
“No someone is making them, they are afraid Darth… oh God what is there?” and Lily terrified turned her head at the ship. She could feel hatred and a truly corrupted heart. Darth, held her hand making her calm down a little and he looked at Clyone and Minto; they were walking quietly, believing that this stupid situation could be solved once they had returned on board.
When they embarked at the ship they found Edolem standing near a woman, who looked at them with disgust, her two colored eyes were making her even more frightening, and Darth stood in front of Lily and Monica: “Nagia” he said with anger looking at her straightly.
The woman moved toward him and smiled: “My dear Darthorian, it’s been a while” and she looked at Lily and Monica “So which of those two is the Priestess? I have wasted enough time away from my dear King trying to catch you”
“How did you find where we were?” Minto asked her “We never informed anyone about our course”. But Nagia laughed and turned to Edolem “Well my dear Edolem, will you explain them your treason?” and everyone looked at him shocked. “How could you brother? Why did you side with her?” Clyone shouted and Minto held her as she had gone berserk from anger.
“No my sister I didn’t betray you! If we give her the girls we will be able to use the imperial routes! I was only thinking about our family safety!”
“And now you will get your reward” and Nagia stabbed him with her sword pushing him and threw him at the sea as her sea beasts devouring him in front of everyone. Clyone screamed and Minto held her having his eyes closed. Lily felt his Heart Light disappearing and tears started to fall “You bitch!” Monica shouted and she aimed her with her bow. Nagia turned to her and moved closer “I wouldn’t do that my dear, you see if you try to kill me my babies will crush your ship, so put it down now” and Monica hearing her words she lowered her weapon. She observed her and then she turned to Lily; Lily raised her head and looked at her with anger “So you are the one” and she grabbed her from her hair pulling her away from the others “Let her go Nagia!” Darth screamed and raised his sword. Lily felt her hatred and rage and she understood: “You are the one who created the storm!”
“What a clever girl! Well done! But that was only a greeting. You know Nevol wants her alive, Darthorian, but what about you? Why do you still keep her alive?” and she turned to Lily “What are you to him, weak human?” and held a dagger near her neck.
“What am I, you wonder” Lily said and she moved her hand as her ribbon created a strong wind and pushing her back, running to the gunwale diving into the sea. “Get her back! I want her alive!” she screamed to her beasts and she turned to Darth who had already charged against her holding a sword and a spear on his hands. Nagia’s red eye became brighter and shadow warriors appeared attacking at the crew members “Everyone battle positions!” Minto shouted and the crew members no more afraid of Nagia’s threats begun fighting her warriors. Limon had already grabbed Monica and they were flying above the ship aiming at the warriors. “Be careful not to harm anyone else!”
“I know Limon!” and she started firing.
Suddenly the sea became wilder and a storm broke. The rain was falling heavy as the battle on the ship became wilder. Nagia was trying to avoid Darth’s hits but he was faster than her. “Does she think that this will stop me?” and her blue eye shined creating two hands consisted from water, grabbing Darth and Monica, after hitting Limon and dropping him at the sea. Nagia rode the waves with the huge watery hands holding tightly Monica and Darth. “Priestess can you hear me? Be a god girl and come out! If you care about their lives!” but the melody on the air made her freeze from fear. The mermaids were coming toward the ship riding the waves, hundreds of men and women holding spears and swords attacked Nagia’s monsters, killing them at the spot, and helping the others defeat her warriors, jumping from the one side to the ship to the other. She felt a presence behind her and turned; in front of her there was standing a huge body of water in the form of a woman with huge hands and long hair, everything consisted from water, and only a spot on her left side of her chest was shinning∙ if you could look closer you could recognize a human body swinging a golden ribbon controlling this huge body. She was looking at Nagia who was left terrified, still holding Darth and Monica who had also were looking at her startled. “Release them at once Nagia! It’s all over” but Nagia left a furious scream threw Darth and Monica at the cold water and she too transformed herself into huge body water fighting Lily fiercely. Lily saw them falling at the sea but she couldn’t help them because Nagia’s attacks left her with no choice.
Monica felt someone grabbing her from the water; she coughed loudly and felt Limon pulling her to the sky making a great effort not to pass out: “Limon!” and she climbed from his neck and sat at the base of his wings. She could feel him flying unstable and she held him tightly, she turned but only to see her sister transformed into a huge body of water fighting Nagia as the thunders were sounding wilder and stronger around them. “Limon… we must search for Darth!” but he didn’t answer; his first priority was to secure her safety before he passes out, the sea water made him really weak because he struggled enough to swim to the surface. “He will be fine, he must be” he repeated continually to himself and Monica hugged him from the neck.
Nagia and Lily were still battling but with no winner yet. Lily felt, though her power of sensing anything that was into the water, Limon saving Monica from the raging waves but still no sign of Darth “Are you worried about him? Don’t be he will soon drown deep into the cold ocean!” and her water hand hit her once more. Lily couldn’t find a way to beat her, she couldn’t hold on for long and also with every minute passing Darth’s chances were becoming few. “When Azure and Clomin are fighting together they become a tremendous combination” Elder Fin’s words echoed on her mind. She waved her hand to the sky “Wind raging at North answer to my call!” and a frozen wind started to blow surrounding Nagia’s water body starting to freeze her, the more Nagia was trying to escape more her body was becoming colder and colder transforming into ice “Don’t you think I am done with you! You will pay for the humiliation!” Nagia screamed to her before she freeze completely and called desperate Nevol’s name.
“This is your punishment Nagia” and the ice broke into pieces destroying her completely, but Nagia herself had already escaped her grasp. Her water body dissolved and Lily dove at the sea.
“Well I must say this was an interesting fighting don’t you think your Majesty?” Elemor asked him ironically. Nevol was furious and from his anger he broke the mirror into tiny pieces. A thunder was heard and Nagia appeared before them falling at the floor holding her bleeding shoulder. Elemor ran to help her but she pushed him away “Don’t touch me you filthy traitor!” and she turned to the King “My King, please forgive me, I will succeed the next time!”and she crawled to Nevol’s side. Nevol turned to her and she took her on his arms: “I know you will, because you gave me the Priestess’s weakness” and together left the throne room leaving Elemor behind watching Nagia succumbing more and more into the darkness.
Darth fell into the sea when Nagia saw Lily. He tried to swim at the surface but the currents and the waves pulled him deeper and deeper. He cursed his body, his limited powers and started to lose consciousness as he sunk into the dark water, he closed his eyes wishing for his death to come quickly. That way she would be safe, she wouldn’t cry again, she could from now on smile more often. But then he felt hands holding him from the neck and his arms, something warm touched his lips again and again as air filled his lungs making him able to breathe again, and he opened his eyes. The mermaid was trying to look at him but her eyes couldn’t meet his, her blue hair, decorated with coral hairpins, were shining like sapphires under the water while her white tail was sparkling like crystals spread everywhere on her scales. Darth thought he saw for a moment Clomin but the mermaid’s eyes at the color of amber corrected him. The mermaid started to pull him with her swimming with incredible speed holding him tightly. “She is worried” he thought “silly girl, always caring for the others” and he smiled as they were swimming following the waves currents.
“We must find them! What if Nagia defeated them?” Monica was begging Limon to take her into a sky patrol in order to find Lily and Darth. They had finally reached the ship and they found Minto and Clyone trying to save anything they could; the ship had taken quite big damage and it needed urgently repair. Thanks to the mermaids help they managed to defeat Nagia’s warriors and her beasts. Limon got up and called Dings “Monica, I and Dings will search for them”
“No buts Monica! You will help here and also… help Clyone, she is worse than you think” he said looking at Clyone who was sitting covered with a blanket crying.
“Very well, but” and she grabbed him from his head “make sure to bring them back!” and Limon took off with Dings on his back. “Try to sense Darth’s presence! I hope he is not far” Limon said to the puppy and Ding’s started to sniff the air.
Darth was lying on the soft sand. He tried to stand up but he felt dizzy. He looked around him; he was at the bay of the Bone Desert. He called Lily but he got no answer from her. He got up and started to walk at the shore calling her name. He found the mermaid trying to crawl outside the water, she was breathing heavily and her tail was shining still outside the water. He took her on his arms holding her outside the water. She was shivering and her eyes were tired “Are you alright Darth?”
“I am the one who should be asking that! And he took of his coat trying to cover her shivering body “It’s wet but it’s better than nothing” and he looked at her “What were you thinking? Diving to save me after you fought Nagia”
“I returned the favor” and she smiled
Darth couldn’t understand that girl, he held her trying to make her stop shivering “that is something amazing transformation you have”
“Clomin told me, every time I transform I become the Mermaid of Sorrow, I grief for the destruction of the sea and I fight her enemies but with a great cost”
“What cost?” but he soon saw her tail being torn apart at two transforming back into human legs and Lily screamed from the pain holding Darth tightly. He saw her scales and her gills transforming back into human skin and her blue hair becoming shorter and blond again. When her transformation ended Lily was still holding him trying to find her breath again. “Two more to go” she said and sat near him trying to cover her naked body: “Don’t you even dare to look” she said as her head was looking at the sea while the sun had started to set. “I wouldn’t!” he replied and together they remained silent as the night made her appearance. After a long time and with no sign of the others Lily was resting on Darth’s lap; it was quiet as the only sound they could hear was the waves were breaking at the sand. “Lily”
“Thank you for saving me.”
“Also there is something that is bugging me”
“How was able to breathe under the water, I felt something touching my mouth before I see you, do you know what happened?” But Lily had already stood up and started to walk without knowing where she was going. Darth started to walk behind her asking and asking again. He stopped for a moment and he got a wicked smile “Lily did you kiss me perhaps?”
“No I didn’t!! I just gave you air mouth to mouth! That is not considered a kiss!” she shouted trying to explain herself and running at the same time following the sound of the sea away from Darth.
“Oh, really? Because, I know when people do that it counts as a kiss!”
“Then you are stupid Darth! Stupid, stupid, stupid” she shouted while blushing and they were still running when Limon and Dings found them late at night. “And I thought that they were in danger” Dings said
“Here goes the couple!” Limon said and they both laughed.