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Chapter Twenty-Two

" So, that is what's going on....," the Dezorian President said as he reclined in his chair. Yakkara sat opposite of him, Raja sat next to Yakkara, and Rune sat next to Raja. They were in the President's office. It was highly furnished and quite large. It had a regal air about it. If you weren't very confident in yourself, you'd have felt very small and insignificant in that room. Rune nodded. " I must say this is hard to believe. In fact, if Yakkara wasn't living proof, I would say you were crazy. Even if you do have a Dezorian Priest with you," the President said.

" It is true, President," Raja said. " I'll stake my reputation on it!" The President was about to comment on this but changed his mind.

" What can be done about these Ancient Espers?" the President asked.

" RAISE TAXES!" Yakkara shouted. Rune, Raja, and the President stared at him, confused. Yakkara smiled widely.

" AHEM.... I say we stand up to them... but from what I have seen of Yakkara, our chances of victory are slim," Rune commented. " Still, we can't just sit by and let them kill us!" Rune added.

" I agree. We won't let them trample us. We will talk of this later, when you, Raja, and Yakkara are rested. Where is your other companion?" the President asked.

" Dazzle's gone to our guest room. She seemed pretty tired," Yakkara said. " I wonder why! Could it be that she got worn out trying to beat you up?" Yakkara said to Rune. Rune only smiled.

" You should do the same. You have had a tiring day. Go and rest," the President said. Rune nodded and stood up. Yakkara leaped to his feet and smiled.

" Bye bye, el Presidente!" he barked. Then he took off. Rune shrugged and followed after Yakkara. Raja did the same. Yakkara dashed down the hall and stopped in front of the door to the guest room. Raja had been given his own room. Dazzle had thought that this was very unfair but as Rune pointed out, Raja was a Dezorian Priest. Dazzle had stormed off to their room, mumbling something about the President being prejudice. " I'm going to get something to eat!" Yakkara said, abruptly. He hopped off, in the direction of the kitchen. Raja watched Yakkara run off.

" I'll go too. I can't joke on a full stomach!" he said.

" And that's a bad thing?" Yakkara called to Raja.

" Yes! You would be deprived of my marvelous sense of humor!" Raja answered. Yakkara gagged and collapsed to the floor, appearing dead. Then, he leaped to his feet and ran towards the kitchen, intent on beating Raja there. Rune shrugged. He opened the door and went in. There were three beds, two that originally were there and a third brought in for Yakkara. There was a dresser with two drawers, a closet, and some lamps. The carpet was a pretty light blue and the walls and ceiling were white. Rune gazed about but there was no sign of Dazzle. Rune thought of using his tenemental powers to find her but decided against it.

" Why bother? She can't get in to any trouble HERE," he mumbled. He walked over to the dresser, undid his pony tail, and opened up the drawer intended for him. Dazzle had demanded the closet for her things. Neither Rune nor Yakkara felt like challenging her claim. He shifted through his belongings that he had packed. " Strange... I can't find my brush... oh yeah! It's by the sink in the bathroom!" Rune walked over to the bathroom. Busy in his own thoughts, he opened the door. He jerked and gasped at what he saw. He saw Dazzle in the shower. She hummed to herself. Rune couldn't actually SEE her, only her silhouette in the navy blue shower curtain. He stared, absolutely shocked. His mouth dropped and his eyes grew wide. Dazzle stopped humming and peeked past the shower curtain. She took one look at Rune and screamed.

" GET OUT!!!" she screamed as she grabbed a towel. Rune stared, in shock. Dazzle swooped down, grabbed a bar of soap, and threw it full force at Rune. Rune ducked. Dazzle grabbed washcloths and threw them, she grabbed a scrub brush and threw it, she threw shampoo bottles. " GET OUT GET OUT GET OUT!!" she screamed as she threw whatever she could get her hands on. Rune dashed out of the bathroom. Just before he could slam the door, his brush came soaring through the door and smacked him in the face. Then, Dazzle slammed the door shut. Rune could hear her furious cursing and growling. Rune picked up his brush and rubbed his face.

" Thank you!" he called. He was answered by a nasty word. Then, he went over to the dresser and began to brush his hair.

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" They're here!!" someone screamed from atop the wall surrounding Termi. Fenrir had been briefing the Hunters, Palmans, and Motavians. He had told them all he knew about Ancient Esper battle tactics and even managed to help a few soldiers with their spells. Fenrir, upon hearing the cry, ran as fast as he could to the wall. Sure enough, the Dezorian Ancient Esper Army had arrived. All the Hunters, Palmans, and Motavians leaped to their positions and prepared for attack. Fenrir bristled. A single scout, a brown horse, galloped to the gates. His blue and gray armor flashed as the sun shone down on it. There was tense silence as the scout approached. He called out a greeting in the Ancient Esper language. The scout then snickered. Fenrir growled.

" What did he say?" The Hunter's Guild Leader whispered.

" He thinks he's so funny! He called out a Dezorian Ancient Esper greeting. ' Death to the vermin.'," Fenrir growled. He snorted in disgust.

" Hello!" the scout called. Fenrir walked in to view.

" Hello," he snapped.

" Fenrir! It is indeed a surprise to see you! But what surprises me more is that you are defending vermin!" the horse called. Fenrir growled.

" State your purpose or you shall be killed!" Fenrir yelled. Four Hunters leaped up to Fenrir and prepared to throw their slashers.

" Tsk, tsk, Fenrir. Turning on your own kind! Oh well, I have been ordered to tell you that if you and Nan surrender now, you shall be spared! The Palmans and Motavians must die, of course, but you will be spared," the horse laughed. Fenrir snorted.

" Surrender to YOU? Your leader must have lost what little mind he had if he expects me to surrender!" Fenrir retorted. The horse neighed.

" You were given a chance, Fenrir. You should have taken it!" the horse snapped. Fenrir spat viciously at the scout.

" I will NEVER surrender! Never! I would rather die like a warrior than live like a coward! Shut up and fight!" Fenrir screamed. The horse growled in anger. Before anyone knew what has going on the horse made a horrible mistake and lost his temper, casting GiWat on Fenrir. The Hunters immediately attacked the horse, killing him for his error. Fenrir had managed to duck the GiWat and was unharmed. Fenrir stared at the horse's body. Nan bowed her head. She turned and walked to the 'hospital'. Fenrir sadly watched Nan walk away. But, his thoughts were immediately interrupted as the Dezorian Ancient Esper Army charged Termi.

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