Author's Note: Writing this is an enlightening experience. I've realized that a lot of love and time goes into these thing for those who truly do love their creation. And I do… I want to look back on this and say, "Now you'll live on when I'm gone." Enjoy!

(Author's notes)


"Thinking / telepathy / memory"

Disclaimer: I own the story and the characters, everything else I don't.

Chapter 3.2 – The Intruder Part Two

Cyber leaped in the air, his claws sliding out farther than they already were. The monarchies flinched and the crowd started towards him, thinking he was attacking. Though they were half right…Cyber soon met the figure midair, noting that it was a young female apprentice perhaps a year or so younger before wincing as she clamped her jaw on his left shoulder. Her scent was eerily familiar despite its faintness, the smell of a laboratory.

As he felt the ground meet her back, he had sent a shock through her system once, hoping she wasn't skilled enough to hold her disguise as he can. One half of him was hoping he was wrong, the other anxious of the consequences of attacking a fellow citizen of Jade. The crowd's aura felt restless enough and he wasn't about to give them a reason to doubt him, if only for Aconite's sake.

The shock caused her to release her hold of him with a yelp. The youth started to convulse with faint, croaking squeals and screeches at her throat. He false brown fur darkened to a pitch black and her grey was flooded with blue. Her eyes fluttered before closing, her breathing became even after the convulsions passed. The crowd can only stare at what happened and they murmured amongst themselves, trying their hardest to piece together a puzzle missing nearly half its pieces.

"A shadow dragon! Here?"

"How'd she get inside?"

"An intruder! Who know if there's more among us!"

This and similar shouts echo in the chamber, turning speech into an incomprehensible noise. Cyber lifted his paws from the unconscious apprentice's form, glancing over her. She can't be a cyber dragon…but that was the only explanation of her coloring, the blue was too light a shade to be a shadow dragon. Primarily black with blue wing membranes and, presumably, blue cybernetics to match her wings and eyes. Worry was the first emotion he felt, but the panic around him was too disruptive to think of the implication of that worry. Still, he hope that the Jape citizens wouldn't pick up the discrepancies.

Cyber steeled himself, this attack could mean many things and could very well lead to war, or worse, if the angry shouts were any indication. With a muzzle pressed into a thin line he said one simple command. "Stop."

Everyone froze at the word, even when their voice drowned it out. It didn't stop the subzero ice in the word from radiating throughout the chamber or the frighteningly chilling aura Cyber held. He looked over his shoulder to the other cyber dragon as he spoke, his left eye the only difference in a green sea. "If this how a kingdom runs, then it will soon fall if a surprise attack has shaken you this much."

Many in the crowd winced at his harsh words; however, they still accepted them to be true. The queen leaned on her mate shaking, while the king stood frozen in shock. Cyber's "grey" eyes flicked to him and he decided. "We should take the king and queen to the medical bay. As for the intruder, she should be kept in a secure area until they both recover."

His word seemed to spur every dragon and dragoness to action. Two took the cyber apprentice to a holding area away from the main tree and two others herded the royalties to the med bay. The rest seemed restless as if waiting for his instruction, Aconite glanced at his brother in envy as much as he did pride. So much for this being his big, special day.

Rose approach him and Aconite could see her mouth move, her eyes flicking to and fro the bloody floor and his brother's bloody wound with concern and a bit of guilt. Cyber shrugged her off, he turned to Aconite and flicked his tail in a distinct "come here" motion. Once the younger as at the elder's feet, Cyber led Aconite with his tail to the wide entrance and opened his wings. This action didn't seem to bother him and together they lifted off. Cyber guided Aconite back to the clearing they call home, wondering what was to come of this development. Whatever it was left a bad feeling in Aconite's gut and a chill down his spine.

When they were back at the safety of their clearing, Cyber spoke knowing full well that everyone else will be too preoccupied with recent events to spy on them. "Aconite, the attacker was not a shadow dragon… She is my own kind, a cyber dragon."

Aconite shifted on his paws uncomfortably. "But everyone thinks it's a Shadow* that attacked them, wouldn't that mean we're safe?"

"No." He shook his head. "This is the first time a 'Shadow' infiltrated the kingdom. They would not leave this be."

"Can we run?" the younger brother asked.

Silver eyes became shadowed as he answered softly, "That would only make us suspicious. To leave suddenly after a 'Shadow' that lived among them attacked."

He looked to the brightening sky as the sun once again rose from the horizon. They both knew that all they can do now is wait. Whether or not that will spell disaster on them is uncertain. Word from the monarchy will come soon enough.

Several hours after dawn:

The vast majority attended the Tree's top chamber when the incident happened. The two brothers sat on their hunches near the very back of the crowd. Many on the audience were sleep-deprived, including the brothers, but Cyber manage to get the blood off his false-green fur and bandage it with moss held on with giant spider webs.

The queen seemed calmer now that the danger had been subdued and the shock had worn off, while the king's eyes looked hollowed and wary. The cyber apprentice was tied up in spider silk and thorn-covered vines that dug into her with every struggled movement.

The tense atmosphere is so thick that if one were to reach out with their claws they'd surely slice through it. This atmosphere only got heavier with the king's words. "There was a spy among us. What's to say there aren't more? In that case, every dragon in this kingdom is to be tested for signature abilities of our Kin."

"Every resident must be tested once and any dragon must be evaluated with every entrance to our kingdom," The queen continued softly as her mate took in a breath.

"And all those who leaves the kingdom without being confirmed as one of us will be hunted down and prosecuted as traitors, a Gaian or otherwise!"

Shadow – Proper term a shadow dragon

Rol out!