Savanna struggled with the chains around her wrists and ankles. She tried to tug them free of the wall.
"My, my, my. The Last Azer. I love how Aze chooses his youngest Azerath to protect such a powerful being."
Savanna lunged, but the chains forced her back.
Gelwix laughed. "I shall send little Ali a message. Are you ready?" Laughing, Gelwix pressed something
over her mouth.
Ali's phone rang. She looked at the caller ID.
"Savanna?" she asked anxiously.
"For one so stupid, you are a good guesser."
"Right here. Would you like to talk to her?"
Savanna's muffled calls came through the phone.
"Gelwix, let her go."
"Hmm...no. The Azer are offering high prices for this one."
"Where are you?"
"If you want her back, meet me at the abandoned warehouse downtown."
"Gelwix! Where are you?" Ali shouted as she entered.
Ali ran towards her, but a bright light blinded her.
"If you want her, fight me." Gelwix challenged.
Ali unleashed her sword. "I accept."
Gelwix unsheathed both of his swords, swinging them skillfully.
Ali gulped and got into a stance.
Gelwix slashed at Ali.
Ali blocked, but the force drove her to her knee.
Gelwix kicked her in the face and sent her sprawling.
Ali jackknifed to her feet.
She thrust and received a hilt to the face.
Ali rolled aside as Gelwix stabbed the concrete.
Ali stabbed his foot and jumped up, kicking his stomach.
She swung at his head but he parried and shoved the sword into her armor.
Ali tossed the sword aside. She attacked Gelwix fiercely.
He elbowed her in the face smashed his hilt into her nose and kicked her across the floor.
Groaning, Ali tried to push herself up.
"No." Gelwix forced her down with magic.
He stabbed his sword into her shoulder.
Stomping down on her wrist, Gelwix said. "Let go."
He ground his foot into her wrist.
She released her grip on her sword.
Gelwix twisted the sword in her shoulder. "The Azer are coming, and they're taking the girl with them. Oh, and this too."
He took hold of Ali's crystal and tugged it off of her neck.
Immediately, her armor disappeared.
"You are NOTHING. Nothing, you pitiful Azerath." Gelwix pocketed the crystal.
Savanna watched as Gelwix thrust in Ali's sword.
He walked to Savanna and sneered in her face. "When the Azer arrive, I will receive my pay and you will
no longer be my concern."
Savanna stared at the ground, and her eyes found their way to Ali's body.
Bright flashes of light of different colors appeared in the room.
Gelwix stood. "I have the girl, where is my pay?"
"Right here." A flash of yellow lightning hit Gelwix in the chest.
He collapsed, Ali's crystal still in his hand.
"Take her." The Azer said.
"No!" Savanna struggled with them as they took her arms.
"NO!" Ali slashed her way through the Azer.
"Back. Away." Flames danced along her blade.
"The Azerath has no crystal!"
The Azer backed away.
"Leave!" Ali shouted at them.
The Azer fled.
As soon as they were gone, Ali collapsed exhaustedly.
"Ali." Savanna caught Ali before she fell on her own sword. "Are you okay?"
"How did you-"
"The ring's enchanted, remember? It draws from a different source of power, not the crystal."
Ali nodded. "The Azer are stupid. No offense."
"Won't they come back?"
"Not immediately. They're scared of the crystal-less Azerath."
"So, Gelwix didn't kill you?"
"No. He missed my heart."
"Then aren't you going to lose too much blood?"
"Yeah. Can you get me the crystal?" Ali asked.
Savanna scampered over to Gelwix's body and took Ali's crystal. She tugged Gelwix's crystal off and returned to Ali.
Ali put the crystal back on, and it glowed.
"Ali, I have a question."
"Why was I able to cast a spell without magic?"
"Savanna, Aze wanted to be sure that you wouldn't know until your time, so...he kind of built it into you."
"It's embedded in your brain."
"Ew. Gross." Savanna said.
Ali nodded. "Rather."
"Hey, you look better."
"So what do we do?"
"I think I should teach you how to cast spells, so you won't accidentally cast one during...let's say, school." Ali grinned.
"What did you mean when you said Friend against friend?"
Ali looked down. "When you were born, Aze looked into your future and one of the Azerath prophesied:
Forged in sisterhood
Bound in spirit
Torn by fear
Friend against friend.
That's all that was recorded on that day."
"Weren't you about a month old when I was born? How do you remember this stuff?"
"They're called books. Historical records."
Ali managed to sit up.
"I never thanked you for saving my life." Savanna said.
"It was my duty." Ali replied, feeling her shoulder.
"Come on, I'll drive you home."
"Home. Hm." Ali said.
"I'm the last Azerath in this city, I need to find another Azerath."
"Azerath travel in pairs." Ali said as she walked with Savanna towards the Mustang's parking spot.
"That would pose a problem, wouldn't it?"
"Yes. I'll have to inform my parents."
"I'm going." Ali said.
"I need to find an Azerath."
"Ali, you told me your race is dying."
"What are the chances?"
"Slim." She said.
"Aren't you supposed to protect me?" Savanna grinned.
"Then I'll be your superhero sidekick." Savanna grinned.
Ali looked startled. "Well, um...uh-"
"Come on! Don't tell me there's a rule against an Azer and an Azerath from pairing up!"
"I would need to check the historical documents, but since it's usually been a given that Azer are bad, I don't think there is a rule against it."
Savanna grinned and climbed into her car.