The Black Pit

August 31, 2008
By
The Black Pit


Sara McMillan was a normal teenager. She had a mom, dad, and an annoying sister. She was an average student in school and she had a lot of friends. Sara had problems with her sister and mother and had crushes on boys who were immature. Yeah, Sara had a pretty normal life. She would have never expected it to turn out the way it did.
Sara had a particular crush on a boy named Jeremy. They had gone to preschool together then lost touch with each other. Later they met up in high school. Both of them were in the school band. They were mutual friends and had some similarities, but a lot of differences.
Jeremy was shy, but Sara was outgoing. Jeremy was normal (or what you would call normal) although he had his moments. Sara was nowhere near normal. However, both of them loved music and they both had split personalities. One afternoon, Sara gets a call. It's from Jeremy. She was surprised and delighted at the same time.

'Jeremy? Hey what's up?' Sara asked.

'Sara, I need your help. Can you come over?' Jeremy said.

'Sure. When do you want me to come over?' Sara asked. She was curious why Jeremy wanted her help. She shifted the phone from her left ear to her right.

'As soon as you can. By the way, can you bring you iPod for me?' Jeremy said in a hurry. Sara realized that he sounded distracted.

'Why-never mind, I decided I don't want to know. I will be there in about 10 minutes.' Sara replied. She hung up the phone and grabbed her iPod. Then she got her mom to take her to Jeremy's house. When she went to the door, Jeremy opened it before she could even knock. He grabbed her and pulled her inside.

'Hi to you, too. What's the matter with you? You look paranoid.' Sara said. Jeremy gave no reply. Instead he started to push her down the hall. His mom was in the kitchen and she looked up and saw Sara.

'Why hello Sara. I didn't know you were coming.' Jeremy's mom said. She walked out of the kitchen and toward Sara and Jeremy.

'No time. Got to go. Hurry, hurry, hurry.'Jeremy said frantically. He pushed Sara up the stairs before she or his mother could say anything.

Sara hurried along wondering why Jeremy was acting so weird. She had gone off into her own world trying to come up with an answer. Jeremy pushed Sara down a long hallway and into a room. Once they were both inside, Jeremy turned around and closed the door. Sara looked around her and found herself in a room that looked as if the great detective Monk had cleaned it.

Jeremy started to run around his room and pick up items. Sara stood there watching in bewilderment as Jeremy piled items in a circle. When he has finished the circle, there was a small earthquake and the circle turned into a big, black pit.

'Wha'? You'the circle'pit'huh?' Sara managed to stutter. She looked up to Jeremy as if to say 'Is this really happening?' Jeremy shrugged his shoulders and had an apologetic expression on his face.

'I told you I needed your help. I know that it is asking a lot but I need you to come with me.' Jeremy said. He said it slowly and deliberately. Sara just stared at him. There was a long silence between the two of them.

'Are you asking me to jump into this big black pit thing? Something I have no idea where it stops or what is on the other side.'Sara said as if she was still trying to believe that this wasn't a dream. She sat down heavily on Jeremy's bed.

'Look, I've been there before. I've made some friends, but they need our help. I need your help. Please, come with me. I will be with you every step of the way. Please, I'm begging you.' Jeremy pleaded. He held out his hand. Sara looked at him, sighed, and took his hand. He smiled and pulled her to her feet. They stood at the edge of the pit. Sara took a deep breath and nodded at Jeremy. He squeezed her hand and then they both jumped into the big, black, mysterious pit.


Chapter 2
Around and around they went. Deeper into that mysterious black pit. Sara and Jeremy were still holding hands when they came out flying out onto an open field. Jeremy pulled Sara across the field to some trees on the edge.
'We don't want to be out in the open. The few times I have been here, I made a few creatures mad and they haven't forgiven me yet.' Jeremy said quietly. He looked all around him while saying this.
'Wait. Back up. Creatures? And you made them mad? Well why didn't you just turn us over to them? Who are they by the way? Why do you need my help?' Sara yelled. Jeremy tried to quiet her before anything could hear them but it was too late.
Running right toward them was a pack of angry creatures. The one in the center had purple horns. It had a long snout and small black eyes. Its mouth was twisted into a frown. It's face in the shape of a square. It's stomach a big circle. The second one on the left was a one-eyed one-horned flying purple people eater. Sara screamed and Jeremy pulled her deeper into the trees. They ran farther and farther into the little area of trees. The creature followed them all through the 'woods'. Jeremy pulled Sara into a small cave. He put a hand over her mouth to keep her quiet. She nodded her head and sat down heavily.
Jeremy looked out of the cave. He saw the creatures still coming. He knew that he had to make decision on what to do and fast. He looked sadly at Sara and knelt down. She looked at him quizzically. He made gestures for her to stay put. When she finally got it, he stood up. He made to walk out of the cave, but she grabbed his arm.
Sara finally understood what Jeremy meant to do. She didn't want him to leave her. She didn't understand why he would ever consider leaving her. Sara knew that this was a very noble and brave decision on his part. She didn't care. She wanted him to stay. She didn't know anyone in this world and she didn't know her way around it. How did she know which animals or creatures or were nice?
Jeremy gently took her hand off his arm. He turned her hand with the palm up and gently put his mouth to it. She looked sadly at him waiting to see if he would change his mind. Jeremy looked into Sara's eyes. Suddenly, he let go of her hand and ran out of the cave.
Sara didn't move. She sat there starring at Jeremy's silhouette as it faded as he ran further away. Suddenly, all of those creatures came running into her view. They ran up to the cave and turned to face the place where Jeremy was fading into the sunset. Sara gasped, and then put her hand over her mouth. She didn't need one of those creatures hearing her and coming after her. She looked out to see if she was alone. She was.
'Okay, so I'm alone. I need to stay calm. Calm is the best thing to be right now. Calm' (Sigh) breathe, just breathe. Keep my mind calm. Just breathe.' Sara said to herself. She stood up in the cave and hit her head on the top. She stooped lower and cautiously walked toward the entrance of the cave. Sara looked out. There seemed to be nothing there. She walked out of the cave.
'Let me see. Okay, so Jeremy and the creatures or whatever they are ran that way. I don't think I want to go that way. Wait, what if Jeremy got away? What if those creatures didn't eat him? What if they just captured him? What if? What if? What if? I need to stop thinking about all 'what ifs' in life or this world. Let me think. Should I go right or left?' Sara said all of this to herself and in a hurry. All of a sudden, a small squirrel came running out of a bush nearby. Sara looked startled at the sound and she looked around. Finally, she looked down and almost screamed. The squirrel was sitting next to her, pulling her pant leg. Sara almost kicked the animal away from her, but she saw the look on its face.
'Wait, that's impossible. Squirrels don't have expressions. They hardly have any thoughts at all.' Sara thought to herself. The squirrel looked at her quizzically. Sara bent down expecting the squirrel to scamper away, but it didn't. She put her hand down to pick up the squirrel. It dashed into her hand and she picked it up. Sara looked at the squirrel in amazement. She had never met a squirrel as tame as this one.
'What are you staring at, human? Haven't you ever seen a talking squirrel?' the squirrel said, 'Well, say something.' Sara almost fainted. She started to see black wings in front of her eyes. She shook her head and stared at the squirrel.
'Sara, you are just dreaming. That squirrel didn't just talk to you. Take it easy and breathe.' Sara said aloud. She looked at the surroundings around her and back at the squirrel. It looked at her with a curious expression. Sara shook her head and told herself that it was all in her imagination.
'Ummm...No, it's not a dream. This is really happening. Any ways, we don't have enough time to go over what is and what isn't. We need to go. We need to go rescue that other human. The creatures are going to take him to their lair. We need to figure out a plan to rescue him before they get there. The creatures' leader can't see the human. It would ruin everything that we have worked for.' The squirrel said. It looked up to Sara and then down toward the ground as if it expected her to put it down. Sara did exactly that. She watched as the squirrel started to run toward the bush. Then it stopped. It turned back to her and looked at her expectantly. She looked unsure if she should follow him, but something in her mind told her that it was important to follow the squirrel. Sara was still doubtful, but she followed anyway. She followed the squirrel through the bushes and off to a trail. When she finally caught up to the squirrel, it was on a tree waiting for her.
'Before we go anywhere, I need to know your name. I can't call you 'The Talking Squirrel', because I figured that there are more of you. Am I right?' Sara said tentatively to the squirrel. It looked at her with a kind of kindness and then continued down the path. She ran after it. However, before she could do anything, but take a few steps, she tripped over something. She looked down and screamed.
There was a tree root moving toward her. It started to move up her leg. The tree looked at her. 'No, that's impossible trees don't look.' Sara thought to herself. 'And squirrels don't talk. What about that one, Sara? Huh, pretty Sara? Why don't you go with the nice big tree? It will protect you. You will never come to harm when you're with the tree.' This voice seemed to come from her head, but she didn't know whose voice it was. This was certainly not her inner conscience voice.
'NO! Don't listen to it. Listen to me, human. Don't listen to that voice. It is not a trustworthy voice. It will not keep you safe. It will harm you. I have helped you so far. I haven't led you into anything dangerous, have I?' the squirrel said. It was saying all of this while trying to chew at the tree's roots. The squirrel finally managed to bite down on the tree's roots. The tree screamed an ear-splitting shriek. Then it let go of Sara and hobbled away. Sara scrambled up and ran down the path. She didn't know where she was going. The squirrel ran after her. He finally caught up to her.




Chapter 3
'Human, wait! You can't go on like this. Slow down. You are going to wear yourself out before the real fighting begins. STOP!' yelled the squirrel. Sara stopped so suddenly that the squirrel was still running before he realized she stopped. The squirrel came panting back to her. Sara didn't say anything. She just stood there, breathing heavily and staring off into space.
'Paladino.' The squirrel said quietly. He looked up into Sara's face to see if anything had changed. It hadn't.
'Human? Are you there? HHHUUUMMMAAANNN! CCCAAANNN YYYOOOUUU HHHEEEAAARRR MMMEEE?' shouted the squirrel. He looked again to see if Sara's face had changed. It had. Somehow it looked kind of eerie.
'What? Where am I? Oh, I'm still here. Did you say something? I couldn't hear you.' Sara said in a small voice. She looked unsure if she knew who she was. She kept looking all around her. Paladino looked suspicious, but dismissed the thought.
'I said that my name is Paladino. I also asked if you could hear me, but that is beside the point. Are you all right?' Paladino asked. He sounded so concerned that Sara looked at him with a little surprise.
'Yes. I'm okay, but I wanted to know what you said while we running. You said something about the real fighting not beginning yet. What do you mean fighting? I didn't ask to fight and why are we fighting?' Sara said in a hurry. She had panic in her voice and she had fear in her eyes. Paladino looked up into her eyes. He had sympathy and compassion in his eyes. Sara thought that he had beautiful eyes. She thought that he had something besides emotions in his eyes. She thought that he had a lot of wisdom in them. She calmed down after she figured out that nothing was going to attack her in the next few minutes. Sara sat down on the ground and looked at Paladino.
'Sara that is your name isn't it, look. You will not need to do any of the hard fighting, but you will need to do some of the fighting to get the other human back. We need him to lead the fighting. We have no leader. We only did what we have done by coming to a complete decision between all of us. Anyways, when your human friend found us, he had a solution for everything and we were so thrilled by his authority that we did whatever he said. Now, we appointed him leader and he is captured. You are the only one who can rescue him, but we will do anything we can to help you get him back. This human means so much to us. He means our freedom and our lives. We need both of you human's help. Please. We haven't much time. We have to keep moving.' Paladino said. He started to move up the trail. Sara got up quickly and walked down the trail with the squirrel ahead of her. She was trying to assess the information that Paladino had just given her. She had a lot of thoughts running through her head, but the most common one was that Jeremy had a solution for everything and that he had authority. 'Jeremy has authority? Since when? And when did he suddenly have a solution for everything? Well, I guess if he has another personality, it would make sense to use it in another world where no one could stumble on it.' Sara thought to herself. She was mulling over it very carefully when she suddenly remembered something.
'Hold on, who is we? Why does Jeremy mean your freedom and lives? Who is threatening you? Why am I the only one who can rescue Jeremy?'Sara asked suddenly. Paladino turned around but continued walking.
'Well, in answer to the first question, 'we' is the animal committee. We formed one so that we wouldn't have any chaos among the animals. In answer to you second question, Jeremy can either lead us to battle or a peaceful resolution before battle. Either way, we can hope for a solution from him. In answer to your third question, the creatures' leader and army is threatening us. In conclusion, the answer to your final question is that you can defeat the creatures' leader, but we can't defeat all of his army without a leader. You will get a lot of help along the way, but the only way to defeat him is through you. Does that answer all of your questions?' Paladino said. He looked curiously at Sara. She looked at him apologetically.
'No. I have one more. Who is the creatures' leader? What is his name and what does he look like? These are the questions that haunt my mind.'Sara said.
'Well, the creatures' leader's name is Hembernate. I know that it is a little hard to pronounce. He is a huge creature. He has a snout and teeth that are almost always dripping in drool. He has a huge head and little ears. His eyes are too dangerous to look into. You will go mad if you look straight into his eyes. His body is a muscular body that is full of slim. He has a brownish coloration of his body. He is not a creature you should mess with. Thankfully, you are not messing with him. You are destroying him. Does that answer all of your questions?' Paladino said. He looked politely at Sara.
'Yeah, I guess that is all of my questions for now. Mark my words, I will have some later. I could ask them now, but I want time to think and you must be tired of talking by now.' Sara said tiredly. She was walking slower than Paladino was and he stopped.
'Um'I was wondering if you could do me a small favor.' Paladino asked tentatively.
'What is that?' Sara asked.
'Could I ride on your shoulder? I am getting tired already and my feet are going to kill me if I don't stop walking. However, we need to keep going because time is short.' Paladino said. Sara smiled.
'Of course, you can ride on my shoulder. However, I don't think that my shoulder will be able to take your weight all the way there. So, there will be times when you need to walk, okay.' Sara said. She had stopped and crouched down. She placed out her hand and Paladino got on it. Sara placed him on her shoulder and started walking again.
'Obviously. I didn't want to hitch a ride from you. I only wanted to give my feet a little rest. I will be out of your hair in a few minutes. Figuratively speaking of course.' Paladino said settling down on Sara's shoulder. Sara had a small, but sleepy smile on her face. They continued walking for a couple of hours.

Chapter 4

They had been walking for over four hours and Sara was starting to ache all over her body. Paladino was sleeping on her shoulder at that time. She shook him awake. He awoke, but grumpily.
'Paladino? Can we stop for awhile? My legs can't take any more walking and I can hear voices. I don't want to confront anyone in this state. Please.' Sara said pleadingly. She set Paladino on the ground and looked hopefully at him. He looked at her sharply.
'Voices? When did you start hearing these voices? Why didn't you wake me up when you first heard them?' Paladino said. He looked all around them. He ran up a tree to see farther and when he came back down, he saw that Sara had fallen asleep. Paladino crawled into Sara's lap and keep an eye out for anything that might come along. Sara woke up about half an hour later. Paladino was gone. She stood up suddenly to start looking for him when he fell out of her lap.
'Hey, did you have to do that. I was right there. I didn't wake you up did I?' Paladino said. He looked grumpy, tired, and a little hurt, more his pride than his physical hurt.
'Sorry Paladino. I didn't know you where in my lap. I thought you were gone. Anyways, you're not and we can continue on. How much time do we have left?' Sara asked politely. She picked Paladino up and set him on her shoulder. She continued walking at a fairly good pace.
'Not long now. You said you heard voices, but I didn't see anyone so that means that we can't be far behind them. Are you ready to battle the creatures and their leader?' asked Paladino. He sounded a little nervous and excited at the same time.
'Sure why not? On one condition, you have to tell me how to defeat him. I have no idea what his weaknesses are or how to defeat him. If none of you animals could do it, what makes you guys think that I can?' Sara replied. She was a little frustrated and nervous about what they wanted her to do.
'Certainly. I will tell you how to defeat him. However, I can't tell you to defeat him completely. You have to figure that out on your own. I hope that the help I provide will be enough to ensure that you destroy Hembernate. Only time will tell.' Paladino said.
Sara and Paladino continued walking on for about ten minutes. Then, they heard something that made shivers go down their spines. It was a laugh. That was all, a laugh. This one particular laugh was a blood-curdling cry. It could have split a thousand wine glasses from a mile away. It was very short, but very precise. It had a meaning and what that meaning was; Sara did NOT want to know.
Sara and Paladino started to look around them. Sara was silently praying that the person or creature that had made that laugh was not close. Suddenly, Paladino called Sara over to some bushes. She carefully slid into the enclosure, trying not to make any noise. Paladino pointed toward a clearing right in front of them. Sara could see all of the creatures that had chased Jeremy and her earlier this morning. She also saw some creatures that she had never seen before. When she turned to look at Paladino, he shook his head. He pointed to an object a little less than 25 feet away. It was Jeremy in a cage. He looked exhausted and bored. He was watching the creatures with no interest in what they were doing. They were making grunting noises to each other and seemed to be fighting over something.
Sara wanted to go get Jeremy right now. She didn't care about any stupid monsters. She wanted to tell Jeremy to take her home. That she had enough fun and fairytale for one day. She wanted to get Jeremy and just hit him for leaving her in this mess. Most of all she just wanted to be in Jeremy's arms. She started to get up and walk toward Jeremy, but Paladino jumped in front of her and wacked her head with his long bushy tail.
Paladino then pushed Sara out onto the trail. Sara was amazed at how strong
that squirrel was. Paladino had to get Sara away from there. He knew that she could not stand being away from Jeremy for too long if she saw him. He knew that it was some sort of human feeling.

'Sara, you must not go into that clearing without a plan. You still have to deal with all of those creatures and rushing into the clearing unarmed is not the best way to handle it. Get a hold of yourself. If not for your sake, for Jeremy's and mine. Please Sara, get a hold of yourself.'Paladino begged through clenched teeth. He didn't want the creatures to hear him and he couldn't afford to let Sara get into their hands. She was Jeremy's only hope. Sara stopped struggling so much, but she still showed signs of wanting to go get Jeremy. Sara took a few minutes to recover and then she was fine. She listened to Paladino's pleading for a few more minutes before she cut him off.
'All right already. I got a hold of myself. Now, get off me. You're hurting my stomach. So how am I going to destroy all of these creatures and their leader?' Sara whispered to Paladino.
'Well, you need to find the weapon of destruction. You will find this weapon in your mind's eye. You will need to figure or he will die. This is the rhyme you need solve in order to evolve.' Paladino recited. He looked perplexed at the thought of solving this rhyme. Sara sat down on the side of the trail. She started to think about this rhyme.
'Well, let me see. The first part of that rhyme might mean something that I have seen or have in my head. It could mean something like my feelings or ' My feelings! I like Jeremy! That is what it means. I have to call on my feelings for Jeremy to defeat Hembernate. Okay, I have that part figured out, now I need the next one. The next thing is to figure out the rhyme or else Jeremy will die. I think that I have to do it in a certain amount of time or he will die anyway. Alright, I figured out that one. The next one is that I need to solve this rhyme in order to evolve. I think that if I can do this I will become a better person. I think that this whole rhyme is about solving it. Well, that is just lame.' Sara said. She shook her head in disappointment.
'I thought that it was going to be harder to solve this riddle. I am very disappointed with this hocus pocus stuff. They need to change the people who right these things.' Sara said. She stood up and dusted herself off. Paladino looked impressed at how fast Sara had figured out the rhyme.
Paladino replied, 'Um' Okay. Now that you got that figured out, you can defeat Hambernate. We should go and start to plan our attack.'
Sara replied, 'All right, let's go.' They started to walk down the trail. They were deep in a patch of woods and Sara heard a river running. She looked around her and saw the river not too far away. She looked back at the clearing and seemed to make up her mind about something. Sara moved away from Jeremy and toward the creatures. She was out in the clearing by this time, but the creatures had their backs turned. She picked up a branch that had fire on it and raised it over her head. She brought it down on the first monster. It collapsed without as much as a grunt. The others turned in surprise and tried to fight back. Sara turned on them and swung the branch over her head again. She did this five times and the creatures were just starting to realize what had happened. They weren't too bright. Sara turned and ran back to Jeremy. She tried to open the cage they had him in. He looked skinny and tired up close.
'Wow, Sara! That was amazing! How did you do that? Where did you get the nerve to do that? You are so cool!' Jeremy replied. He looked amazed and proud to know Sara. She was blushing, but didn't say anything. She was preoccupied with getting Jeremy out of the cage before the other creatures came back. She had another thought. One that was worse than any other she could think of. 'Or Hambernate could come and I would have to fight him right now. No, don't think about that. You have a job to do. Sara, stop it right now.' She thought that she would do whatever it takes to get Jeremy out of this cage, because he depended on her and she never let anyone down.
She had untied the knot on the cage and opened the door, when she heard the creatures coming back. She turned and all of a sudden, she froze. She didn't know why she did. She couldn't explain it then or later. All she knew was that she couldn't move. She was scared true, but she wasn't that scared. She just couldn't move. Jeremy looked at her with concern.
'Sara? Are you all right? Sara? Come on, they are coming back.' Jeremy said. He reached out a hand and touched her shoulder. She seemed to come out of a trance or something. She shudders and then started to look around.
'Jeremy? Where are we? What am I doing here? What'Oh. I remember. What's that sound?' Sara asked. She looked scared but calm. Jeremy grabbed her by the waist and pulled her back into the woods. They ran toward the trail and when they got there, Paladino came running down a tree. He yelled for them to follow him and they took off again. The creatures found out that their prisoner had escaped and were furious. They started to look for him. They heard Paladino's scream and ran toward it. They could see them running off the trail.
Jeremy pulled Sara off the trail into the woods leading to the river. He could hear it before she heard it. When Jeremy and Sara got to the river, they saw that Paladino had already crossed it and was waiting for them. Jeremy looked at Sara then at Paladino. He wondered how they were going to get across the river. Just then, they heard the creatures growling and knew that the creatures were closer than they were when Jeremy and Sara were on the trail. Sara jumped and ran into the river. She held her hands above the water to signify where she was. Jeremy watched her with growing amazement. He then jumped in the water after her and followed the suit.
Sara reached the other side of the embankment and crawled up. She expected to be soaking wet, but it was as if she hadn't gone in the water at all. She looked in awe at her dry clothes and then back at the river. She saw a few of the creatures at the other embankment, but not touching the water. She supposed that they couldn't touch the water. Jeremy had arrived by that time and they continued deeper into the woods. Jeremy put his arm around Sara and smiled. Sara was bursting with happiness when she heard another laugh. This time it was louder and sounded closer. Paladino shot up the nearest tree to see if he saw anything. Sara shrieked and hugged Jeremy tightly. Jeremy's face had acquired a stony serious look about it.
'Ah, isn't that just the cutest thing you have ever seen? HA. You know, I want someone who will comfort me. How about you, girly?' said the voice? It had a clear yet somehow muffled tone to it. It sounded like someone who had a lot more than you did and wasn't going to let you forget it. Sara was frightened not by the voice, but by the hardness in Jeremy's face. He looked like a murderer that had just been shot at and somebody was going to pay. Sara was too scared to say anything to him and he still had his arms around her. She didn't dare pull away in case he snapped or worse. She had never seen this side of him before. She was slightly curious as to how many other sides he had.
The voice continued talking. 'What, is the big, bad man insulted? Did he get jealous when I said I wanted his lady friend? Oh that's too bad. I wanted to be friends with you. Oh well, I guess we will just have to play the game of who is the better man, huh?' The voice was tearing Jeremy apart and Sara could see it. She could see it in his eyes. Sara squeezed Jeremy gently and he looked at her. She smiled and shook her as if to say 'You don't have to be the better man. Just be the man that is there.' Jeremy nodded to say he understood and continued walking. Sara was glad he chose to ignore the voice. She was almost sure that it was Hambernate and she didn't want Jeremy to deal with him. Paladino said she had to destroy him and so she shall. She would do it for Jeremy's sake if not for her own.
Paladino scampered down the tree and followed the humans. He was shaking all over and wished Sara would carry him again. His feet were aching and his back was sore. As if she had read his mind, Sara stopped and picked up Paladino. He smiled as he relaxed on her head. She smiled at the thought of anyone seeing her with a talking squirrel on her head. There was Jeremy of course, but she didn't think he thought she was too weird. They continued walking and resting for several days. Paladino said that it would take a while to get to the safe quarters of the rebels.

Chapter 5
'Wow that is a big safe quarter. I have never seen one so big.' Jeremy said. Sara gave him a funny look.
'Haven't you been here before? You said that you came to this world before. They didn't bring you to their safe quarters?' Sara said.
Jeremy replied, 'No, I have never been here. I don't think they trusted me enough to bring me here. I guess that I have finally earned their trust.' Jeremy said. He dismissed this as if it didn't matter. Sara looked impressed and turned to the little squirrel that had led them all this way. She smiled as he turned to her with a worried expression on his face.
Paladino said, 'I hope that this is satisfactory for you, sire. We did what we could to make it as comfortable as possible. Please come right this way. We have a private quarter for you and your mistress. Follow me.' Jeremy laughed at the mention of Sara being his mistress. Sara gave him a sharp look and followed Paladino. Jeremy was still chuckling as he followed Sara and Paladino. Paladino led them into a tent that was on the far side of the quarters. It was a small tent with a sign that read 'Leader and Mistress'. Sara scowled at that, but went inside anyways. Jeremy stood waiting with Paladino. It was up to Sara whether she liked the placing, not him.
Sara came out and looked down at the small, yet overly worried squirrel. She smiled sweetly and nodded. Paladino let out a small sigh and went to attend to some other business. Jeremy went inside the tent. He looked around and saw some furnishings. It looked as if the tent had been stretched out to the maximum length to fit everything and then stretched some more. The animals fit a small couch and a table. It also had a coffee maker and a small refrigerator that had been filled to the maximum amount. There was one bed in the middle of all of this with more than enough blankets. It seemed that the animals spent more than enough time studying humans from the amount of books in the tent. Sara was looking at these.
There was a lot of books that had titles that weren't readable, but the ones that were, were hilarious. There was a 'Humans and the Art of Interaction', 'Human Beings- the Real Deal', 'Humans and You', and 'Humans- Myths and Facts'. Sara pulled this last one out and sat down. She opened to a random page and began to read it. Sara was interested in what the animals thought about humans. Jeremy finished touring the tent and turned to look at Sara. He saw her curled into a ball with a book in her lap. He thought that she looked beautiful even with all of the cuts and scrapes the unmerciful nature gave her. He felt a compassion for her that he could not explain.
Jeremy walked up to Sara and she looked up. Jeremy took her head in his hands and kissed her forehead. Then he went out of the tent and toward the gathering of animals. Sara was perplexed. She didn't know what had caused that unpredictable act from Jeremy, but she liked it, so she wouldn't complain. Sara walked to opening of the tent and looked out. She saw Jeremy talking to the animals about what they could do to defeat Hambernate. Paladino was trying to explain that only Sara could defeat Hambernate, but Jeremy wouldn't listen. He refused to let Sara get hurt and he was afraid that Hambernate would do that. Sara shook her head at the thought of Jeremy's stubbornness. She knew that Jeremy would never accept it until the last possible minute.
Sara started to go back to the book on human myths and facts when she heard her name. It was just a whisper. It sounded as if someone had whispered her name as if to a lover. Sara froze. She thought of calling Jeremy over to check out if there was something in here after all. Then, she got a hold of herself. She was scared, true, but she wasn't going to call Jeremy over here for probably nothing. Sara walked over to the book, picked it up, and put it back on the shelf. She went into the 'kitchen' and got dinner started. Jeremy came storming into the tent. His face was red with rage and he was muttering under his breath.
'Yeah, she can only do it. Yeah right. I'll be damned if only she could do it. If she is the only one who DOES do it, I'm a monkey's uncle. I'll show them.' Jeremy muttered under his breath. He keeps shooting dark glances at the tent door and then looked at Sara. She hadn't said anything the whole time Jeremy was raving and she had kept her head down. She was secretly smiling to herself and she didn't think that it was wise if Jeremy saw it. Jeremy calmed down when he saw Sara patiently waiting for Jeremy to stop his ranting and eat. What he didn't know was that Sara was trying with all of her might not to laugh. She didn't trust herself with talking so she didn't. She just stood there silently waiting to see if she could be trusted with herself. Jeremy walked up to Sara and put his arms around her. Sara got chills and butterflies in the pit of her stomach. Jeremy kissed Sara's neck and hugged her tighter.
'I'm sorry. I just get so worried about what might happen to you. I don't think that I could live without you. I sound like a father talking to his daughter before her first date. Heh, I think that I am just going to think awhile. Then, I might eat a little dinner and go to bed. Is that all right Sara?' Jeremy said tenderly. Sara nodded her head and moved to start to put the dinner away. She looked at Jeremy with a funny expression that he couldn't read. Jeremy walked to the chair Sara had evacuated earlier. Jeremy sat down heavily and put his hands on his temples. Sara looked up and saw Jeremy. She thought that he looked like a worn out father of ten kids and she took pity on him. She walked over to him and put her arms around him.
'Don't worry so much about me. I'll be fine. You just worry about what you are going to do about Hamberate's army. Okay. We will deal with who has to finish Hamberate later. In the meantime, you will not eat a little dinner. You are going to eat a hearty meal and then get to bed. We both have a lot to do tomorrow and it is best if we have some rest.' Sara said. She walked over to the dinner table and set out the food for both of them and washed her hands. She turned around and found that Jeremy hadn't moved. His hands where off his temples and he was giving her a strange look that she did not like.
'Don't look at me like that. Get off your big butt and come over here. You need to eat. Don't make me go over there and kick your butt.' Sara said. She put her hands on her hips and stared at Jeremy. He shook himself and got up. Jeremy walked over to the table still staring at Sara. He sat down and started to eat. Sara could not get that look Jeremy gave her out of her head. It gave her the chills and not in a good way. Sara sat down at the table and also stared to eat. Paladino came running in and then went into a low bow. His face almost hit the floor. He straightened up and turned to Sara.
'Hello, your majesty, I was wondering if we could request your appearance. You are needed in a meeting,' Paladino said, turning to Jeremy, 'Your presence is requested also. You are needed to keep the order, if your majesty is willing.' Jeremy and Sara exchanged glances. Sara's looked curious, but Jeremy's looked furious. Paladino ran out of the tent and toward another tent that had been stationed for this purpose only. Sara and Jeremy got up and followed.
'Order! Order! Hey, I said stop talking! The majesties are here. Stop talking right now.' One of the animals in front said. Sara looked appalled at the number of animals that could fit into one tent. Jeremy looked bored. Sara cast a nervous glance at Jeremy. She was afraid that Jeremy would explode and start to yell at everyone. Paladino directed them into two seats in front of everyone. Sara was starting to hate this thing. She was outgoing, but not when everyone was counting on her. She hated to let anyone down.
'Hey you guys, I was wondering if '' was all that Jeremy could get out of his mouth. There was an enormous crash and then Sara heard laughter for the third time in a week. All of the animals in the tent rushed out into the confusion. Jeremy grabbed Sara and rushed her out of the tent. They ran right into a scene that made a packed circus look calm. The animals that had been in the tent with Jeremy and Sara where rushing to a space where creatures where spilling into the safe quarters. Jeremy pulled Sara into their tent and started to pace the floor.

Chapter 6
There was distant roars and shrieks from the fighting animals. Sara was sitting on the floor watching Jeremy talking to himself. Sara knew what she had to do, but she knew that Jeremy would not accept it. She shrieked when an animal howled in pain. She stood up and ran to Jeremy. Jeremy put his arms around her. She looked up into his eyes. There is the misted of a battle going on; Jeremy moved in to kiss Sara. However, before he could do it, Paladino came running in. He was covered in blood and he looked scared to death.
'I'm sorry to interrupt, sire, but we are in a battle that we cannot win. We could retreat. We need your guidance or else all else fails. Please sire, lead us to victory.' Paladino said. He saluted Jeremy and waited for him to walk out of the tent. Sara looked into Jeremy's eyes. There was a faint hint of fear in them, but mostly she could see a kind of insanity in them. It was not the crazy insanity. More like the driven insanity. Sara was proud to see that in Jeremy's eyes. She nodded her head and hugged Jeremy tight.
'Go lead your troops to a victory battle. I'm going to be fine. You are needed more than I am. Make me proud.' Sara said. She watched as Jeremy's chest puffed out and the insanity look seemed to grow in his eyes.
'I will. I will lead my troops into a victory battle. I will make you proud.' Jeremy said. Sara put her hand under his chin and kissed his forehead.
'You already have, my dear, you already have.' Sara said gently and with that Jeremy flew out of the tent. Sara looked sadly at where he was standing. Then, she shook herself. She had a job to do and she had a limited time to do it in.
Sara looked around the tent. She had only been in it for a short while, but she already was going to miss it. Sara picked up a chair that had been turned over in Jeremy's rage and then walked out of the tent. Sara had a determined look in her eyes and heart. She was going to win this battle even if she had to cheat. All of a sudden, she heard another laugh. She stopped. However, it wasn't because she was scared or frozen. It was because she was mad. She was furious.
'Stop laughing at me. I know who you are and I know where you are. I am coming to get you.' Sara yelled at the voice. The practical part of her knew that it couldn't hear her, but another part suggested that it knew exactly what it was saying. As if to prove her point, the voice spoke.
'Oh, I am so scared. Don't you think I want you to know exactly where I am and who I am? Don't you think that I want you to come? Have you ever thought of this? No, of course not. You were too busy thinking of Jeremy.'The voice said. He was mocking her. HER! How dare he? He also knew about Jeremy. Well, it is time to put an end to this. Sara started walking again. This time with deliberant force. After a couple seconds, she started to jog. Sara knew she had to go through the battlefield; she just hoped that Jeremy wouldn't try to stop her.
Sara arrived at the battlefield. She was dismayed at how many creatures and animals there were fighting. Sara took a deep breath to steady her nerves and ran into the confusion. At first, she had hoped that it would be a piece of cake to get through the field. Now she saw that she had wasted that hope. Sara had only walked a few steps when a tiger suddenly jumped in front of her. It bowed and then swiped at a creature that was behind Sara.
'Your majesty, you mustn't be here. It is too dangerous for you. Please let me escort you to the safety of the tent.' The tiger said kindly.
'Thank you kindly, but I can't go now. I need to get to the other side of the battlefield. I have a job to do and I intend to do it.' Sara said. She continued walking through the field with the tiger alongside her. It kept swiping at creatures that came too close to Sara.
'All right, but will you allow me to escort you to the other side. I know that you
must defeat Hamberate,' the tiger said. At the sound of the name, a creature far away roared with anger, 'but I feel that someone else should take on the duty in protecting you until you get there.' Sara looked at the tiger. She knew that the tiger would come along with or without her permission so she nodded her head. The tiger nodded her head and continued to swipe at creatures that were too close.

Sara and the tiger arrived at the other side of the battlefield. Sara thanked that tiger and continued on toward the woods. The tiger looked longingly at Sara and turned back to the battle. The tiger charged down a couple of creatures on her way back into the battle. Sara was walking deeper into the woods. She had a determined faraway look on her face. She was thinking that she had a long and hard job to do when she heard the voice again.

'What's wrong Sara? Are you worried that I may actually win? You are, aren't you? I am right. Ha! I know what you think and I know your fears. You are going to lose and you know it!' The voice said. Sara smiled to herself. She knew that the voice was wrong. She knew that she wasn't thinking that Hamberate was going to win. She knew that she was going to win. She had to win. Everyone was counting on her. Jeremy included, whether he knew it or not.


Chapter 7
'You are such a bluffer. You don't know anything! You can't read minds and YOU know it. You also know that YOU are going to lose.' Sara said. She didn't yell it back. She didn't she had to and she was right. The voice growled with frustration and disappointment. Apparently, he had wanted to scare Sara into not coming and fighting with him, but he couldn't. Sara laughed and saw that she was coming up on a clearing.
Sara slowed her walking pace and became suspicious. She looked around her to see if somebody was watching her, but could see no one. She came to the clearing and gasped. It was a small building, but it was still unexpected. She walked into the clearing with her mouth open and eyes huge. Sara was still standing there with a surprised look on her face when the voice spoke to her.
'Sara, stop staring. You knew what was here. I didn't have to tell you what you where coming to. Don't insult my intelligence or your own.' The voice said. Sara shook her head and glared at the building. Sara didn't want to go into the building, but she knew that she had to. She walked to the front door and pushed it opened. She walked down a hall and up a couple of stairs. She walked into a room and stopped short of coming completely into the living room of some sort. It was very messy and she saw that a few dressers had been ransacked and flipped over.
'Well, welcome Sara. I see that you have remembered the way into my home. Well, I guess that that is a good thing so we don't waste any time getting lost. Now, should we get started with this thing or should we have a drink first?' Hamberate said. Sara stood in the living room and stared at her opponent. She saw that he was trying to trick her into having the drink so he could defeat her without fighting her.
'I never thought that you would be a coward. I always thought that you would fight till the end. Oh well, I will just have to finish you off, you coward. I hope you enjoy this little chat we had. It will be the last one you ever join in on.'Sara said. She looked determined and resolute. She actually thought that she could win this battle.
Hamberate lunged at Sara. She dived to the right and fell against some old lamps. They shattered as Sara pushed them off their resting places. Sara shrieked as a whispery off-white color rose from the lamps. Each one had a silvery white color when they were detached from the lamps. They all screamed with a rage and pain that made Sara want to cry.
All this time, Hamberate had stood frozen. He was staring at the ghosts from the lamps. His face was pale and his mouth moving up and down in a fish form. He was starting to get the feeling back into his legs or so it seemed. He was backing away from the lamps and ghosts when they all stopped screaming and faced him. Hamberate gasped and ran out of the room. The ghosts followed him and started to swirl around his head. He gasped and then screamed. The ghosts moved faster around his head and when Hamberate opened his mouth, a couple of them flew in his mouth. He gulped them down and then turned a ghostly green color. He gagged a few times and then fainted.
Sara had followed Hamberate all this time watching in wonderment. She watched as Hamberate fell after the ghosts forced themselves inside him. She looked at him on the ground twitching and jerking around. She stepped closer to him to see if he was still alive. She could see that he was breathing, but very slowly and heavily. Sara stepped within kicking distance from him. She bent down and put her hand to his throat. She was checking his pulse when Hamberate grabbed her hand, put it to his mouth, and bit down hard. She screamed and brought her other hand down on his head. Hamberate let go of her hand.
Hamberate had blood gushing out of the side of his head. He apparently didn't care, because he stood up with amazing speed. He glared at Sara and he had a red flame in the pit of his eyes and Sara saw that he had hints of the ghosts inside of his eyes. 'He is being controlled by those ghosts and he is relinquishing it.' Sara thought. She was scared to death about how much power the ghosts would give Hamberate.
Sara backed up a little with a trail of blood following her. Her hand was bleeding rapidly but she hardly seemed to notice. She was too busy trying to figure out how to destroy Hamberate. She saw the flame in his eyes flicker some and she wondered whether she could snap him out of his trance. She stopped moving and sat down. Hamberate looked surprised by this sudden movement. He looked down at her with a confused and furious look on his face. Sara looked at him with innocent eyes.
She was thinking furiously in her mind trying to figure out how to defeat Hamberate. She saw the look of surprise on his face and then kicked him hard in the crotch. He bent forward and Sara punched upward. She hit square in the middle of his face. She felt something crack under her hand. She jumped up and elbowed Hamberate in the back. He fell to his knees with a sharp and surprised cry. Sara grabbed Hamberate by his hair and pulled him to his feet. Sara looked around the room for rope. She found some of it in the corner of the room and pulled Hamberate of there. She grabbed the rope in her free hand. She put Hamberate down on his knees and wrapped the rope around his body. She placed his hands behind his back and wrapped them in the rope as well.
Hamberate struggled against the rope Sara tied on him. He growled at Sara and tried to bite her. She moved out of the way and thumped him on the back of the head. He groaned with pain. Sara looked at him with disgust and turned her back on him. She walked toward a desk with papers askew on it. She looked at them with little interest. She continued looking at the desk for a couple of minutes. Hamberate was looking at her with a suspicious look. Suddenly, his eyes grew wide and he moved toward Sara with a slow deliberate walk. He just about reached her when he bent down at the waist and bite down on her shoulder. She screamed and twisted under Hamberate's grip. However, he held on with his teeth and he drew blood from her shoulder. He relinquished it. He drank the blood from her shoulder. She stopped moving because the pain was too much for her to take.
Sara looked around her and saw a lamp on the desk she was just looking at. She moved over toward the desk gasping at the pain and grabbed the lamp. She brought it down behind her and on Hamberate's head. He let go and fell back over a small foot stool. He yelled in surprise and then jumped up. Sara spun around and ran to the door. She turned and smiled a small mysterious smile. Hamberate ran up to her and opened his mouth. Sara opened the door and slammed it on Hamberate's head. He screamed and tried to move out of the door. He almost got free when Sara slammed it harder on his head.
Sara moved to the other side of the house. She was humming a little tune to calm herself down. She went to the bathroom and got some paper towels to wipe off her shoulder and hand. The blood on her hand had started to scab over, but the blood on her shoulder was still bleeding freely. She wiped her shoulder down and placed some to stop the bleeding. Sara grimaced at the pain of her shoulder. She tried to keep back a scream and succeeded.
Hamberate had moved from the grasp of the door to where Sara was. She looked at him in the mirror. He looked horrible. The sides of his head were smashed in and bloody. He had a bump on his head. Sara looked at him with no emotion in her eyes. Hamberate stared at her and shook his head.
'You have a cold heart. I can't believe that you can look at me with no emotion. No regret or guilt? Now, you are a monster. An evil wicked witch.' Hamberate said.
'No, I am not a monster or an evil wicked witch. I have no regret or guilt, because I don't think about it. I have a job to do and I am going to do it as well as I can. It doesn't matter what I feel. It doesn't matter how I do it, I just have to finish the job. Do you want to know why I seem like I have a cold heart? It is because I choose not to care. I choose to shut my heart out of all emotion. Do you want to know what the job is? The job is you. The job is YOU.' Sara said. She was saying all of this while she was cleaning up her shoulder. She looked at Hamberate. He was looking at her with a kind of admiration.
'Well, you seem to take your job seriously. Why?'Hamberate asked.
'When someone depends on me, I will not let them down. That is not even an option. I have to get it done because people depend on me to. That is why I take my job so seriously.' Sara replied. She shrugged and turned to Hamberate.
'Well, shall we finish this thing or would you think to drag it on with more pain for the both of us?'Sara asked. Hamberate looked sharply at her. She laughed. It was a sharp, harsh laugh.
'It is not in my nature to finish something quickly. However, I think that it would be most appropriate for me to allow it once.'Hamberate said.
'Now that is a smart choice. I like that choice. I will make it as short and painless as possible. It will be over quickly. I promise you that.'Sara said. She moved toward Hamberate and he took a step backwards. She gave another sharp, harsh laugh and then took Hamberate's arm and led him down the hallway. She set him on a chair in the kitchen. She placed him so that he faced the living room and not where Sara was standing. She went to one of the kitchen drawers and looked inside it. She pushed it closed when she didn't find what she wanted in it. She looked in the next drawer and so on until she found what she was looking for. Sara went over to Hamberate and told him to put his head down and that this would hurt her more than him.
'I doubt that. I don't think that you will ever remember this day ever again. I don't think that your weak mind could bear to remember this day. Anyways, I can't wait to see what death is like. I hope that it doesn't hurt.' Hamberate said in a small voice. He was looking down at his feet, but Sara knew that he was crying. She didn't feel sorry for him dying, only that he had to die so soon. She knew that he was doing horrible deeds, but if he had been a better creature, it might not have come to this. She had hoped that it wouldn't come to this, but now that it had, she didn't have any other choice.

Chapter 8
Sara brought the item that she had been looking for over her head. She looked down at the slumped figure of Hamberate and sighed. Then, she brought the item down.
After she had finished this, she walked through the house looking at all the pictures. Most of them were pictures of creatures that were all smiling and looked happy. Sara shook her head. She walked out of the house and toward the battle field. She saw that the fighting had commenced a little and she had mixed fillings. On one hand, she was happy that the battle was finished. On the other hand, she was afraid to find out how many of her friends didn't make it. She was also afraid that Jeremy didn't make it. She walked slowly from the building toward the big group of animals in the center of the field. They were all cheering and celebrating. Some looked confused on how to react.
Sara had almost reached the large group of animals when Paladino came running out from the group. He ran right up to her and gave her one of those most ridiculous bows. She laughed and picked him up. He gave her a look that told her exactly what she had and hadn't wanted to know. She looked around her. There were animals everywhere congratulating and giving each other condolences. She wanted to know where Jeremy was. She wanted to know exactly where he was. She talked to everyone she saw.
Finally, she saw the tiger that had escorted her earlier. She asked her if she saw Jeremy. Sara expected the tiger to say no so she was surprised when she said yes. She said that she saw him over by the edge of the forest. She was told that he had been hurt but she didn't know if that was true or not. Sara's face turned a ghostly pale color and she ran back the way she came. She got to the edge of the forest and didn't see Jeremy. She looked left. No Jeremy there. She looked right. No Jeremy there. Then, she looked down and saw a trail of blood leading into the forest. She followed it with a mounting panic. She saw that some spots had more blood than others and it looked like something fell and bled for a while. Sara followed the trail all the way back to right in front of the building she had come out of about half an hour ago. Sara was on the verge of panicking when she saw Jeremy. He was lying face down in a pile of dirt. Sara ran to him calling his name. He didn't move. She arrived at the place where he was laying and knelt down. She put a hand to his throat and felt a pulse. It was weak. She checked to make sure that Jeremy was breathing. He was. She put her arms under him and flipped him over carefully. She looked at his face and had a sinking feeling.
Jeremy had a huge scratch on the side of his face. He had a black eye and it looked like his head was split open. His eyes were fluttering and he was muttering something that Sara couldn't understand. She bent down to see if she could make out what he was saying. Jeremy suddenly reached up and grabbed Sara's shirt. He pulled her down and whispered something in her ear.
'Save Sara. Must'save'Sara. help'Sara'not'me. Sara'Sara'help' Jeremy whispered. It took him a lot of effort to say that much. Sara gently pushed him back to the ground.
'Hush now Jeremy. I am fine. You need to rest. I am right here. Calm down. Lie down. Stop it Jeremy.'Sara said. Jeremy kept trying to push Sara off of him and get up. Sara keep pushing him down and trying to calm him. It wasn't working. Jeremy couldn't see her and he didn't know that Sara was safe. Jeremy was losing blood and strength fast. Sara was scared. She didn't want him to die from exhaustion and blood loose. Sara looked around her. She saw no one. Jeremy was struggling a little harder and Sara was surprised to see that he had more strength than before.
'Sara..? Is that you? Where have you been? I have been looking for you. I need you.'Jeremy said with a normal voice. Sara sighed deeply at what he said. She smiled at him and took his hand.
'I was here. I didn't know that you needed me. Well, I am here. What do you need?' Said Sara. She kissed his hand although it was full of blood. She looked into his eyes and kissed his wet lips. Sara helped Jeremy sit up. Jeremy actually stood up. Sara wanted him to lie back down, but he didn't want to. Sara put his arm around her shoulders and helped him walk back to the field. They walked into the field and the crowd of animals where still celebrating. Paladino ran a few steps and then stopped with
his mouth open. A few animals that were jumping around turned and saw Jeremy wincing at the pain. They stopped jumping and stood staring. One by one, the animals stopped celebrating and stared at Jeremy.
'Um, Jeremy? You want to say something or should I?'Sara asked. Jeremy looked up startled. He stood there starting at the animals staring at him. Then, he burst out laughing. He stood there laughing for almost five minutes. He was the only one laughing. Everyone else was staring at him feeling very uncomfortable. Sara was looking from Jeremy to the animals looking very scared and worried. Jeremy finally stopped laughing. He wiped his eyes and was breathing heavily.

Sara helped Jeremy walk all the way from the edge of the forest to the center of the field. All of the animals parted to make a path for them. When Jeremy and Sara started falling, a couple animals reached out and steadied them. They continued down this path until they got to the other side of the field. Sara looked longingly at their tent, but knew that she could not. She walked Jeremy over to the hospital tent. It was a large brown tent. It had a large red cross on the side and a lot of animals where moving in and out of the tent. She got to the entrance and looked in. It looked like one of the hospital tents on September 11. She gasped at how many animals were in there.

Sara looked at Jeremy and then back into the tent. She sighed and walked Jeremy away from the tent. They got to their tent and went inside. She set him in a chair near the kitchen. Jeremy sat down heavily with a sigh. Sara moved around the tent in a hurried fashion. She gathered towels and rags. She found scissors and some bandages. She went back to Jeremy and set all of her supplies down on the table next to him. She took off his shirt and placed it in the trash. She took the towels and rags and wet them. She wiped off the blood from Jeremy's face and shoulder. She went through all of the rags and towels. She cut some bandages up and fit them on his shoulder. Then, she washed and bandaged Jeremy's face. When she finished all of this, she put all of the dirty rags and towels in the trash.

'Jeremy, you are going to lie down and rest for a while. You need the rest. Don't worry about anything. I will take care of everything. Come on.'Sara said. She put her hands under Jeremy's arms and lifted him. He grunted and struggled to get up. Sara pulled Jeremy to his feet and helped him walk to the bed. She laid him down and walked to the kitchen. Jeremy rolled over to his side and fell asleep within five minutes. Sara moved about the tent washing and cleaning. She heard animals moaning in pain and other animals yelling in confusion. Sara was crying because she felt sorry for all the animals who got hurt. She looked at Jeremy who was sleeping peacefully. She thought for a minute and decided that she could risk it. She walked out of the tent and over to the hospital tent. She walked inside.

Chapter 9

Sara stepped through the tent and was greeted by the smell of blood and death. She looked around to see if she could see the animal that was in charge. She could. She saw an animal that was at the far side of the tent and was giving orders. She could see that it was the tiger that had helped her in the field earlier. She walked around all of the wounded and helping animals. She walked up to the tiger and waited until she finished talking.

'Well hello your majesty. What are you doing here? You should be taking care of Jeremy and yourself. You don't need to be here. You should be resting. I shall send someone to escort you back to your tent.'The tiger said. She looked sympathetic. She waved her paw and Paladino scurried over.

'No. I don't want to rest. Jeremy is resting right now and I don't need to. I want to help. I need to help. Just tell me what to do.'Sara replied. The tiger looked worried, but she nodded her head. She waved her paw at Paladino and he scurried away.

'My name is Tambonia. I was put in charge of this hospital. I need everyone who can help. I didn't think that you would volunteer, but I am happy you did. What I need you to do is bandage all of the animals who aren't severely injured. They are in a small group on the other side of the tent.'Tambonia said. She handed Sara five rolls of bandages. Sara took them and gave Tambonia a small weary smile. She walked around the tent observing all of the animals both injured and uninjured. She got to the other side and looked at the uninjured animals sitting in a circle.

'Hello, my name is Sara. I need you all to form a straight line. I als





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