• Greetings of the Fang
    Chapter One:
    A Fallen Fairy

    tab Lightning flashed as a pale, bright blue eyed figure strode down the hallway of a dimly lit corridor. As another bright flash came, this creature winced, eyes burning in pain. But that light helped any to see what this person, this thing, was. In that brief second, those bright eyes turned a deep crimson, and a smirk crept unto his face. Fangs of pure white emerged from his lips, and he lunged toward a young boy, wandering the hall. The boy let out an agonizing cry as the vampire’s teeth sank down into his skin...

    He woke, gasping for breath. It was all just a dream. That same, horrifying dream… His hands trembled, shaking so violently that a small portion of the ground beneath him created a soft earthquake, a gentle surprise to the earth about him. “Max, are you alright?” a small voice asked softly. It was that of a young female, filled with concern. The fourteen-year-old turned in surprise. “I…Who are you? How do you know my…name…” his voice trailed off as everything from the night before came back to him. “Oh,” he said softly, looking for the pixie who accompanied him.
    “Here,” the soft voice said. Max was now looking at a small figure, about six inches tall, with violet hair that reached her waist, even in its high ponytail. Sparkling blue eyes met his brown ones, and clear wings held a soft reflection of the earth beneath the tiny fairy. “Are you okay?” she asked again, even more gently, so that her voice sounded like the chime of a beautiful, crystal bell. Max nodded, and ran a hand through his brown hair, saying, “Yeah…Just a dream.” He shook his head, willing the memory to go away, to dissolve and never come back…
    “Are you sure you’re alright? The pixie asked, interrupting his thoughts. “You look deathly pale…”
    “Rista,” Max said sternly, “I’m fine.”
    Rista, or Rista-anne, backed off. Her translucent wings became a royal violet color, as if she were deep in thought. She sat in the air, wings fluttering, to keep her in a stable position. Finally, the pixie mumbled something to herself, as her wings now portrayed a map, one where she might be able to find water enough for herself, Max, and Storm, Max’s black stallion. Rista set off at top speed, following the same map from her wings to find that water.
    Max had traveled with the pixie for a few days now, and he found that she was quite helpful. Rista was able to create maps by feeling the earth, and she could fend off even the most powerful of dragons, all by herself. The mini fairy had an incredible skill, and a brilliant compassion. She knew things, at the top of her head, just from living alongside the earth for so long.

    While Rista was away, Max felt a sudden change in the atmosphere. Storm sensed it, too, as he shifted nervously, pawing at the ground in fear.
    Max smelt something as well. ‘Sweat, perhaps?’ He took in a deep breath. ‘No, it almost smells...salty,’ he thought to himself.
    He heard laughter, coming from all directions. “W-who are you? What do you want?” Max shouted to the trees.
    A voice that of a male answered coolly, “I don’t want anything. But the mighty emperor Trasenkiol de Quendall does. He believes you are of some value…” the voice hesitated. “...As do I. But I want something far more than power…”
    Max, full of tension, managed to say, “A-and w-what does Treasoncoil or whatever his name is want with me?”
    A man emerged from the trees, rolling his eyes. He asked, with much annoyance, “Are you always so ignorant, boy? I said that the emperor Trasenkiol believes you have a power of some sort. I would be able to confirm this belief, but…” He smirked evilly as he licked his teeth. “We had a minor…accident upon our travels.”
    The fourteen-year-old began to slowly back away, but when he reached the edge of the clearing, and turned to run, he crashed into another being. He cried out in distress as the man who had been speaking laughed with much enthusiasm at Max’s collision. “Heheheheh… You silly, silly boy! Do you really think that I’m going to let you go that easily? If you somehow do manage to escape us, I shall not bother going after you. But seeing as that’s not about to happen, at least not any time soon…”
    His brilliant emerald eyes flashed fire as he lunged at Max. Long, white fangs brushed the nape of the boy’s neck. “I lust for your blood, boy. But I believe the emperor wants you...human. That was just a demonstration of what might happen if you attempt escape and fail. You have been warned, mortal. Don’t make me hurt you...”
    Max was shaking, even after the vampire’s fangs and eyes had returned to “normal”. He longed for Rista’s presence, longed for her to fight these evil creatures off. He stared at the circle around him, and counted nine of them total. ‘No, I’m sure they’ve got many more...I’ve not even a chance if the leader’s telling the truth...’
    Rista had found the source of water her wings had taken her to. ‘Now comes the hard part,’ she sighed as she thought it. ‘My power’s already mostly wasted...I wonder what Max is up to?’ She fell into an organized strand of power in her mind. She selected a brown thread, and pulled it out of her head. She grasped the thread in one of her tiny hands, as she made a digging action with the other. She floated above the ground as the earth beneath her began to form a hole. In a few minutes, water trickled through the hole, which was about two feet into the ground. Rista, making sure that she had created a full spring, now carefully placed the magical earth strand back into her head, where she again quickly dived into the source of her power. She grasped a dark blue strand, water, to gather the water she wished to collect into an orb. As she came back into the world, she shaped the magic into a circle, where the water from the ground began to form a large sphere. Rista carefully handled the thread as she started to carry that water back to the clearing where Max was.
    As she neared the clearing, however, she sensed evil beings about. ‘Oh no...’ she thought. ‘My power’s too weak now to fend them off...’ She gasped. ‘Max!!!’ She stuffed the blue thread back into her head, and the water instantly fell like a huge raindrop to the ground. Rista was soaked, but she did not care. Max was the first human that she had ever become a sort of...companion with, and she did not intend for him to die, or worse...join the undead. She was scared half-to her own death, for she knew a secret that only most of the pixies knew...She fluttered faster, feeling light-headed as she reached that clearing, and zoomed right past it. She skidded to a stop in mid-air, and scolded herself. ‘You’re being selfish!!! You’re worrying about your own life, not the one who needs you most. Stop it!!’ She turned around, and headed back to the forest clearing. She was low enough to see what was going on below her, but still high enough that none of the ten figures could see her. Then again, they wouldn’t have noticed her, anyway. They weren’t looking up.
    Rista thought quickly and furiously to try and come up with a plan to save her human companion. However, just as she was going to give up, she looked into the sky and saw the faint light of the sun. LIGHT!!!’ She thought. ‘Light, that’s what all dark beings fear most! How could I have been so stupid?!?’ The pixie dived into her power again, now reaching for a long, elegant ribbon of brilliant light, almost blinding, but not quite blinding enough to do permanent damage. She grasped the luminous yellow-white ribbon, and carefully pulled it from her power source. She instantly felt her head lighten. The tiny fairy’s magic was all quite light for her to handle, but the element of light was the heaviest, and most difficult to use...Other than darkness, that is. But Rista almost never, ever, ever dealt with the fragile thread of evil inside her power. She did, however, need to keep it within her, just in case she would need it someday.
    Rista felt light-headed as she held the ribbon of light in her hands. She hoped desperately that the vampires below would not suddenly get the urge to look upward, for if they did...Her plan would be ruined. She now carefully shaped the light into a circle, willing it to resemble the sun. Now came the fun part.
    The pixie took a deep breath, and then blew into the circle, light emerging from her lips. The light spread just as the sun did, but it was neither quite as blinding nor hot. Nevertheless, Rista heard her reward-the annoyed hissing of the vampires. They went back into the trees, safe from this unnatural, dreaded light that came from above them. However, they only needed the shelter of the trees to stay safe. Rista was low on her power source, and letting the light sustain would absorb much of her energy...

    Max held his hands over his eyes, to keep the brilliant light away from his sensitive pupils. He turned away from the light, eyes closed, thoughts of fear running around in many circles around his head...

    Rista gasped. “Noooooooo......” she wailed as Max fell into the lead vampire’s arms. She lost control of the light ribbon, and it fluttered to her head as she went limp and torpedoed for the ground...
    She felt herself being caught in a cold hand, a hand in which Rista sensed much evil and disgrace. Her wings showed frost, even though it was a warm summer day. She gasped, and then fainted.

    “Heh. Two prizes for the Emperor? What a generous forest this is. And now with the boy, we can find what we need most...” The lead vampire held a tiny fairy in his hand, her breath faint and ragged. In a compartment of the trailer the clan traveled in rested a young boy, the one whom was to be given to Emperor Trasenkiol.
    “Master Tirithsindru!” A voice came from inside the cabin where Max slept. “The boy stirs!” Then, a female rushed out from the compartment, holding the door open for her master to go through. Tirithsindru, the vampire leader, stepped inside, still holding the delicate pixie. He closed the door after saying, “Thank you, Mellinia. I will be back soon; keep guard on the door.”
    Mellinia, as the female was named, nodded and stood in front of the door just as it closed, ready to fight if need be. Long white hair cascaded across her shoulders, blowing this way and that in the soft breeze. Her blazing blue eyes stared out at her other seven companions, watching them, studying their movements. She held a pale hand to the door, keeping it shut, for the lock was not very helpful; the door still opened at times, because of wind conditions. Her skin was that of a pale lavender, and icy to the touch. With her other hand, she held a long, two-handed sword. It was more powerful than the average sword, but it was heavier and harder to use. Tirithsindru was surprised that a woman, and a young one at that, was able to use this kind of weapon.

    Inside the cabin, Max opened his eyes. He saw that there was faint light coming through what seemed to be the ceiling of this place. He had been surprised to see a young girl, with beautiful features, only for her to rush out of the cabin and for his captor to enter. He sat up now, staring at the vampire leader with a hatred that portrayed how much he now despised these creatures.
    “Hello, Master Maxwell,” Tirithsindru mocked. “I trust you slept well?”
    Max said nothing, he only just tried not to meet eye contact with the evil man.
    “Hmm. I see that you must not be in a mood to talk. Then I suppose that I shall just leave this thing with you,” the vampire said, as he thrust a tiny object at him, which seemed to be curled into a sort of ball. With that, the leader left the cabin.
    Max stared at what he had just caught, and he couldn’t believe his eyes. It was Rista! He gently turned the pixie over, examining her to see if anything was broken or out of place. As he was just about to decide that the little fairy was okay, he saw her wings and gasped. Rista’s clear, beautiful wings were now crumpled and not able to be used. The tiny pixie wouldn’t fly for a long, long time.