Chapter 37:

The Odd Aqueenian 3

The Nonpareil of Resh (Act 1)

Fiona once again latched onto her opponent. Dia rolled her eyes as the Princess was only able to grab her leg. It didn't take too much effort to shake her off and avoid another falling strike from Odell. As Odell suddenly slowed to a stop in the air again, Fiona appeared next to him.

She grabbed the Hobusian by the arm and spun to throw him at Dia. Just before Odell made contact, however, Fiona reappeared behind Dia and finally was able to grab her mechanical wing. Dia was distracted just in time for Odell to give her a heavy punch to the stomach. She and Fiona flew away from Odell as if they had launched from a cannon. In no short time, they began to plummet to the water.

Dia struggled as Fiona held tightly to her wing. The princess planned to teleport away right before they hit the water and had already locked onto Odell in preparation. Odell continued to float in the air, watching them as they fell.

Dia, however, had other plans. From under her dress's skirt, she produced a short dagger. She moved her wing so that it was next to her side, and by extension, so was Fiona, and plunged the blade at the princess' chest. Fiona tried to avoid it but still managed to get a slit across her arm. She cried out, and the beauideal seized the moment to throw her off.

Dia expanded her wings and managed to break her fall in the air right above the water. With a strong push of her wings, she changed direction and began to fly low above the water. Fiona, on the other hand, kept falling in as she held a hand over the cut. She plunged into the clear Quenth water, and in a matter of minutes, a flash went off under the water, and Fiona was in the air over Odell. She looked to the balcony and appeared there quickly before even another second had passed.

Dia flipped the blade through the air and then slid it back under her dress, where she had a sheath strapped to her leg. She proceeded to run her hands through her long, white hair then looked back up to Odell with a smile.

Odell gritted his teeth.

Meanwhile, Fiona was breathing heavily on the balcony and holding her hand over the slash. She was drenched head to toe, and water dripped down to a puddle that she teleported with her. The princess dropped to a kneeling position as she began to catch her breath.

"Fiona, are you okay?" Gwyn asked as he frantically looked around for something that could be used for first aid.

Fiona tore a piece of her jacket and began to wrap it around her cut.

"It's alright; battle scars are impressive, right?" she said in a forced tone of happiness as she tightly secured it around her wound.

With a large flap of her wings, Dia came in close to where the castle base met the water. She began to fly up alongside the wall. The balcony was clearly her target.

"She's coming here. What should we do?" Gwyn shouted. He looked to Fiona, but she was too busy tying her makeshift bandage to react in time.

We need to stop her! Mem answered in Gwyn's head.

Gwyn put his hand on the railing and liquified a small section of it. Before it turned completely liquid, he pushed it off in the direction Dia was flying up in. She quickly drifted to the side to avoid his falling hazard.

The beauideal flew over the balcony, flapped her wings, changed directions to fly over their heads into the castle. She quickly landed and began running down a hallway that was slightly too narrow for the impressive wingspan.

Fiona gave her bandage one last pull and stood to her feet.

"Hey, don't forget about me!" Odell yelled as he continued to float out above the water.

"Gwyn, chase after her; we'll catch up to you!" Fiona said as she turned to lock onto Odell.

Gwyn took off in a sprint as he followed Dia down the hall. Had he more time to think, he would have pondered what he was doing and who this person was. At the moment, he was focused on chasing the strange Aqueenian.

She was still visible as she neared the next turn, so Gwyn pushed to run as fast as he could. He slowly gained distance on the winged Aqueenian as she rounded the corner. He turned to chase after her while continuing to close the distance.

Dia looked over her shoulder at Gwyn. She turned forward again and shook her head.

"You're pretty quick on your feet, huh?" she yelled out.

"It's the one thing I was good at back home!" Gwyn shouted back as he was getting close enough to reach out and grab one of her wings. He reached out with his right hand, but just before he could grab Dia, she suddenly sped up and began to pull away from him.

"Wow, this is fun; I don't think I've ever ran this fast before! Thanks!" she chirped in excitement.

Gwyn clenched his fist as she began to pull away from him.

"If only I could liquify the floor in front of her..." he muttered.

"What was that? I didn't catch it." Dia shouted back to him as she continued to get farther away. They rounded another corner, and Gwyn spotted one of the swirling lamps a short distance ahead. That was when he got an idea.

As they ran past, he held out his Needaimus covered hand so that it would collide with the lamp. Instead of knocking it over, he liquified just the edges of his current radius limit so that he could catch and hold onto a chunk of it within his hand. The rest of the lamp fell apart behind them as they continued to run.

With the strongest throw he could muster, Gwyn tossed the chunk of the lamp, just before he turned it liquid, in an underhand manner. It splattered on the floor right at Día's feet, and she slipped almost immediately.

The winged Aqueenian went rolling on the ground, and Gwyn continued sprinting after her, making sure to leap over the place where the liquid lamp was on the floor. Dia pushed herself up, but Gwyn grabbed her tightly before she could start running again.

Unfortunately, he could not grip as tightly with his left arm and hand, and Dia noticed immediately. She grabbed his left arm and twisted it so that he flipped over her shoulder and landed squarely on his back.

"Gwyn!" Fiona shouted from down the hall as she and Odell ran down to them.

Dia sighed and began running down the hall away from them.

Gwyn pushed himself off the ground and shouted to the duo.

"Don't slip!" His shout came just in time as Odell and Fiona were able to notice the puddle and jump over it without losing speed.

Gwyn hopped up and joined the other two as they chased after the beauideal.