-Assault on Neo Vane-

"They shall be here any minute."

Tallas sat on his throne, his fingers drumming impatiently on the armrest. Kossori stood off to the side, just as restless. The drumming sound made him nervous. He cleared his throat.

"Master Tallas, are we just going to wait for them to arrive?" After a moment of silence, he hastily added, "Not that I'm questioning your plans." Tallas remained poker-faced and silent. Kossori gulped nervously. What could he possibly be plotting? Surely he's not thinking of giving up?

Tallas rose from his seat. "Come, Kossori. We shall prepare." His words sent chills up Kossori's spine, and he cautiously followed the darkly clothed figure through the corridors. Tallas had slipped into one of the many rooms that lined the corridor. Kossori hurried after him, wondering what the mysterious man would do. As he entered the room, Kossori was blinded by a bright light.

*****

The four dragons flew high in the sky, hidden from earthly eyes by the clouds. Nall turned towards Denyx. "Are you sure that Tallas is in the ruins of Neo Vane?" The young dragon nodded, and atop Nall's back, Ayin also confirmed that she too had heard that Tallas was there. "Well, in that case, we must be extra careful. Undoubtedly, Tallas is expecting us. Who knows what kind of trap awaits us when we get there." The dragons flew on, aware of the impending danger that awaited them.

It was not long before the old ruins came into view. Ayin thought it was quite strange that there was no one in sight, yet she prepared herself for the worst.

"Hello? Hey, where is everybody? I was expecting a whole armada of Tallas' forces waiting for us," Tsadde commented, sounding a bit disappointed.

Once they had touched down on solid ground and the passengers had gotten off, the dragons transformed into their human selves. Daleth unsheathed her scimitar. Rykea held his breath as he looked around. Jerin looked like a cat ready to pounce; her muscles tense and her claws armed and ready. Ayin had her hand on her sword, ready to draw at the moment's notice. After a few minutes, Denyx sighed and crossed his arms. "O-kay. This definitely wasn't expected. Where's the bad guys?"

Beside him, Lumiya felt his anxiety. "Yeah, this is boring. If Tallas wasn't expecting us after all, then we just wasted time for an opportunity surprise attack! Unless he wanted us to think that-"

Suddenly, the ground beneath them began to shake. "Looks like you were right, Lumiya," Denyx said as he struggled to maintain his balance. There was an eruption of dirt and rock as something big emerged. Nall strained his eyes to see past the dust. "What the-!?! Uh-oh, watch it people!! THAT has got to be the BIGGEST wyvern I have ever seen!!" The creature writhed and slithered its way out of the hole.

"Eew! Gross--that thing's leaking all over the place!"Jerin shouted as she stepped away from the slobbering beast.

A familiar sounding laughter echoed through the ruins above the crashing of rock and debris. Tallas materialized atop the wyvern's head. "Welcome... to my 'humble' abode. I hope you had enough time to take a look around, because it'll be the last you ever see of this place, or this world for that matter." He motioned for the wyvern to attack, and transported to a ledge high above the battlegrounds to watch.

"Cheater!! Why don't ya come down here and fight your own fight?!" Denyx shouted out as he just narrowly missed being whacked by the wyvern's thrashing tail. Nall and Ruby had their hands full trying to keep from getting caught up in the beast's powerful jaws.

"POE SWORD!!!!," cried Lumiya as she launched her attack on the wyvern. Her boomerang/sword laid a clean gash on its side. The creature screamed in pain.

Instinctively, Tsadde began his assault while the wyvern remained distracted. "Brazen Bludgeon!!!" He raced towards the beast, targeting its vulnerable spots. "An opening!!" Daleth charged. Her scimitar arced across the wyvern's nose.

The creature bellowed angrily. Its tail swung wildly and caught Rykea off guard. "Gyahh! Ugh, that thing hurts."

"At least you didn't get caught by its spikes!" Seren said as she ran up to check on him.

"Yeah, you're right. If those barbs caught me I would've been a goner. If the poison of a regular wyvern alone is enough to kill its prey, I'd hate to think what this guy's would do."

Denyx raced up the beast's back. "Hyaahhh!!" he yelled as he plunged his sword into the back of its neck. The wyvern roared and flung him off.

Rykea glanced up at where Tallas stood. Why isn't he doing anything? It's like he's just trying to wear us down. Well then, if he won't get involved.... "Nitro Excavator!!!"

Tallas, not expecting an attack, was caught off guard. A few shards of rock grazed his side, and splinters hit his arm. "Gyehh...what-!? Ah, so it's the little Ausa boy. Still have some fire left, I see. Well, big mistake, Premier of Vane. I'll make you regret that."

I already do , thought Rykea, as Tallas glared at him. He didn't hesitate to see what would happen next. "Red Dragon Anger!!!!!"

Tallas' eyes were wide as this unexpected blast was launched. The force was so great that it knocked him off his feet, but only temporarily. Rykea suppressed the urge to toss his hands up in triumph, for he knew that the battle had just begun. Tallas regained his footing once again, and teleported in front of the mage. A loud, high-pitched shriek interrupted them. They turned to where the others had been battling the wyvern. Nall had just delivered a devastating blow to the beast. Rykea expected to see Tallas look a bit disappointed, but instead, the overlord laughed. "Ha ha ha ha ha! So you've managed to destroy my wyvern. Now it looks like we will have the final battle."

"And what happened to Kossori?" Daleth inquired. "Did he decide to chicken out?"

Tallas chuckled. "Oh no, of course not. If you would so kindly take a look behind you..." The group turned. The heaving body of the wyvern began to glow and change form.

"K-Kossori!" Rykea exclaimed.

Kossori struggled to breathe. He turned his head towards Tallas. "Y-you... tricked..me. Ry..kea....I- I'm sorry I... didn't listen... to you. I shou..ld... hav........"

"You monster!! How could you do that to your followers!?! You don't care about anyone except yourself!!! Are you that selfish?" Ayin gripped the Sword of Althena tightly.

"Ayin's right," Rykea spoke up, "You are a monster. And a freak and a liar and a deceiver. How dare you take advantage of people like that. I'm not just going to stand here and take it. Tallas, you're going down."

Back to The Calling of Ayin.

Back to the Library of Vane.

Back to the Shrine to Ghaleon.