After a fierce morning’s training session, I was looking forward to a relaxing evening doing what Pekingese do, sleep and eat cookies. My wounds were almost healed, and I felt much more my normal bouncy self. Having fought War, and Morgana Le Fay over the past month, I think I deserved a little down time.
The warm late spring sun was baking down in the backyard where I lay, the breeze gently blowing, the sky clear. I rolled on my back, absorbing the sun, since Pekes are solar powered. Pure bliss. My sensitive ears picked up a slow, deliberate tapping on the fence, and I rolled over to investigate. I padded over to the fence, listening intently. Realization dawned on me as I realized it was another Knight, tapping in code for me. I waddled over to the hidden panel, pressed a paw against it and opened my escape route to the neighborhood. Veiling myself I trotted over to the where the other Knight was tapping. He turned and looked at me, grinning and tail wagging. We sniffed one another, in the traditional Knight manner, then bounced on our back paws in formal greeting.
Polyson, an elder Knight, held out a paw, and a blue orb formed between us. An information orb. Interesting. To receive communication in this manner meant there was a lot to be absorbed. I bowed my head, allowing the orb to flow into my head. Upon delivery, Polyson nodded, woofed, and vanished. Presumably off to his next stop. Concentrating I began to browse the orbs information. As I did, my heart fell. Proditor, one of the most powerful Knights, has turned rogue. The information available to the Knighthood was limited, but he apparently snapped, killed his apprentice, and two other Knights before vanishing. Rumor had him in the middle east briefly, but it was unsubstantiated.
I padded back inside my fence, thinking so deeply I didn’t notice Bricky standing at my exit, watching for me. I raised my head, sorrow in my eyes. and I focused my power, producing an orb of my own, and floated it towards him. He may be retired, but he deserved to know. I walked inside while Bricky absorbed my orb. I heard an awful howl and stopped in my tracks, turning and looking back at Bricky. His eyes were glazed over, tears falling from his eyes. He trotted over to me, placing his right paw on my shoulder. His voice reverberated in my head. “Proditor was a close friend, we trained together, fought together, bled together. This is a great loss for the Knighthood, please excuse me” he whimpered.
I watched him leave, disturbed in more ways then I could articulate. I gave him a moment then followed him back in the house. I ate my cookie, drank some water and settled down to try and nap, process some information, and try to decide how to help.
I awoke from my nap in the middle of the floor, realizing everybody else was asleep. A green mist was swirling outside the door, and incredible power began to form outside. I darted to my hidden compartment, grabbing my sword, shield and donning my armor rapidly. I recognized the power, but it was different, almost greasy, and tainted with something else. A stout form began to appear outside the door, black armor, with red lines of power glowing around it. It was Proditor, but different somehow. He had garnered more power then was typical for a Knight. Worse, I recognized it. He had somehow gained some of the same evil power that War used.
I trotted outside, paws spread staring at him. A voice formed in my head, Proditor was talking to me without contact! Unheard of!!
“Little Knight, I regret this, but I will kill you, as I have killed many others.”
“Why? What do you have to gain?” I thought back. “Power. War is here, the end is nigh, and it is foolish for the Knights to think they can stand against the darkness. Power is granted to those who know to ask, power to reshape this world. Power to destroy it.”
I stepped back, unsheathing my sword, its Runes sparkling with the blue power of a Knight. A gentle woofing came from his mouth, as he unsheathed his sword, black with red swirls engraved in it. We charged each other, paws churning, blue magic meeting red with a fearful clash. His sword ripped through my body, splitting me in half. Or, so he thought. The illusion had held long enough for me to leap in the air, coming straight down on his back. He rolled at the last second, my sword barely bringing blood. He turned, surprise evident in his face. I spun on my paw, flinging tail hairs at him, hardening as they flew faster and faster. He woofed and a barrier appeared, shattering my hairs. My mind was racing furiously. I would have to outwit him, I couldn’t stand toe to toe with him, not even if he didn’t have some of the power of War in him. He woofed again, and a wall of pure energy raced towards me. With no time to dodge, I held my sword up, power flowing through it, splitting the wall of force. He followed it up with a sword thrust which I barely avoided, then turned it into a side slash, which I absorbed on my shield. He was all over me, sword slashing, thrusting, power flaring from his paws. I dodged, parried, jumped and tried to avoid everything.
I stumbled back, panting, as he stood looking at me, hardly any strain showing. I felt him channeling power, and knew something big was coming. A ball of blazing red power exploded from his paw, rocketing towards me. I woofed a brief word, spinning on the spot, trailing energy from my body into an angled tube. His power hit the tube, then circled back towards him. I vanished moving with all the speed of a natural born predator to his right side. He sidestepped the ball of power, and impaled himself on my sword. Twisting he squirmed free, blood spurting out of his wound. I raised on my back paws, woofed twice, and two blue circles of power exploded from my paw, encircling his front and back paws. Magical Knight cuffs if you will. I darted forward, knowing they wouldn’t hold him for long, and focused all my power on the Knighthoods chamber, transporting us both there simultaneously. A twisting feeling and we vanished and re-appeared in the Knighthoods main chamber. Several Knight guards rushed forward, binding Proditor with more and more power. I collapsed, exhausted from the effort, the fight, and my injuries.
Polyson padded over to me, with two medic St Bernards. I passed out from my injuries, a huge beer keg being the last thing I saw.
I awoke some time later, feeling rested and healed. An information orb was sitting on my bed side, which I quickly absorbed. Protidor was in a cell, magically warded, and being interrogated. I paused, absorbing that bit of information. Knighthood interrogation could be cruel, but given the circumstances, understandable. I rose, looked around, and teleported myself home,ready for some rest, cookies and cheese.