THE PARTY BEGINS
“So, what, do we masquerade?” Po asks, crossing his arms. “I don’t like going to parties, but a masquerade might make it better.”
“Masks? No, no, no,” Charlie shakes her head. “No, no masks. We’re all going to go, and we’re all going to have fun.”
At twelve midnight, a few of the party are already in the castle, dressed up and ready to dance. The rest of the group walks up through the front gate.
As they approach the gate, they see hundreds of people flooding into the castle. Guards check Simple University cards at the gates, slowing the flow. However, the rest of the adventurers make it in, dressed up to the nines.
Inside of the castle walls, all the tents from the guards have been put away and Bob’s horse is led behind the castle to a stable near the garden. Lanterns hang from threads from the castle’s wall to the castle itself. They light up the ground poorly, but add to the ambiance.
Inside, the castle has been cleaned from top to bottom. Everything has been wiped down and the statue from the center of the room has been replaced with a clear water fountain. Against the walls are long tables filled with food supplied by Nat Wyler. There is a dance floor in one corner and the kitchen doors on the other side.
The chandelier in the middle of the room glitters with clean glass.
Bob the Builder adjusts his wig on his head and brushes his dress. “Do I look okay?” he asks, attempting to blush.
“Yeah, I mean, I guess so,” Flekt mumbles, crossing her arms and looking at her own dress.
Just then, Charlie (the non-coronated princess?) walks down the main staircase, her sky-blue dress creating a strong contrast between herself and the dark woodwork. “And here she comes,” a man says from the front of the room, his face shrouded under a hood. “When do you want to be coronated, your majesty?”
“Uhm,” Charlie pauses, reaching the bottom of the stairs. “Uuuhm.. When.. later, I think.”
Darren, the hooded man, nods and bows away, joining Zuko on the other side of the room in small talk.
Meanwhile, Sippele sneaks away in her blood red dress and fur. She sneaks up behind an unsuspecting commoner, her hands outstretched–
–when suddenly Po comes up behind her and picks her up off her feet, moving her onto his shoulders. “Oh no you don’t, kitten,” he says, walking away from the commoner without them noticing anything.
“Let- go- of- me!” Sippele squeals, hitting his back with her fists. After a moment of deliberation, she gets out her claws and starts to scratch him.
As they get into a rather violent scuffle, half of the coronation party flees, fearing the worst. Luckily, Charlie is able to persuade the other half of the party to stay for the festivities, and she also stops the cat-fight.
Nearer to the kitchen, Flekt watches some waiters and waitresses. One of them walks out from the kitchen carrying a six-level class tower, balancing it with expert precision. “Ah, yes, I need one of those,” Flekt says, reaching for one of the lower glasses.
Before blinking, all of the glasses come crashing to the floor, despite the waiter’s attempt to stop them. “Oh! P-pardon me!” the waiter shakes his head. “I did not mean to ma’am– it is my fault, pardon me-” Some fixing spells and a new tray of glasses later, the party is back on track.
Over by the dance floor, Biskut makes her way towards the band. She asks if any of them can teacher her an instrument, any instrument, and after some talking to, one of the cellists agrees to teach her the violin on his old, tattered, and broken violin during the party for about an hour.
In the meantime, Sippele tries to persuade other people to steal for her. After a man who had one-too-many falls on Darren while trying to steal his hood and another man who trips and falls mid-stealing, Sippele finally gets a few jewels off of one woman, somehow fulfilling a life dream of hers. She then slips the jewels into Po’s pockets before anyone notices.
On the other side of the party, Bob and Darren leave the party scene and walk off to Jonathan’s bedroom together to put the one-too-many man on Jonathan’s bed to sleep. As they are walking back to the party making small talk, two men burst into the front doors. Everyone turns to look at them.
“DRAGONS! Two! Two dragons! Coming, now, they’re coming!”
The coronation party breaks down into absolute chaos. “Dragons!” random people scream, “Dragons!”
“Calm down!” Charlie tries, staying where she is although people run by her on all sides. “I’m not even coronated yet!”
“That’s too late, princess,” one of the men at the door yells to Charlie. “You have to get out of here.” Bob and Darren run past the man, hand-in-hand, and they flee the battle.
Some people manage to get out of the castle before the two dragons slam themselves into it. The dragons bring down the chandelier and take out anyone underneath it. They stand on their hind legs for a moment, and before they can make another move, Flekt realizes that these are not normal dragons:
There is a red dragon by the dance floor and a time dragon blocking the entrance.
Biskut knocks a hole in the castle to be able to come and go past the time dragon and Charlie uses the opportunity to get a better vantage point.
After a long scuffle with the dragons, there are almost no survivors except for our adventurers. “We must stop,” the time dragon speaks to Flekt. “We must stop, for you are equal foes, and we are challenged and weak from our flight.”
Did someone send the dragons? Who did it? Who were those two men at the door? Will the party reach Dyinglight in time?
Find out next time during Books and Battles, TBA.