Chapter 14:

First Fight

Full Moon! Through the Rings of Love

Luna and I were pretty cozy up here in this tree, the view was so calm, washing away the difficulty of insomnia.

She’d already fallen asleep. Carrying her down the tree would have been too difficult, so I just let her lay in my arms.

Before I knew it, I was asleep too.


Luna was gone when I woke up to the sound of some loud birds in the distance. It was so early that the others weren’t awake just yet.

“Where’d she go?”

She wasn’t anywhere around here, so I got a bit worried. Nothing would have attacked her, right? Not very likely. If something attacked her, I would have known about it. I was holding her in my arms all night, after all.

Okay…why would a moon princess wander off on her own again? There had to be some reason.

“Don’t bite! Be civil, now.”

That was her voice in the distance. So she was okay. But what was going on?

“There…eat all you’d like.”

What in the world…?

I tracked down her voice and discovered some sort of building that looked like it might have been a type of a space observatory with a broken dome. Luna was inside, and it looked like she was holding some type of fruit in her hands.

Right in the middle of the room was a big nest of twigs and branches. Some fluffy looking things were wiggling around in there.

“Eat up.” She hadn’t noticed me yet. Wherever that fruit was from, she was feeding it to something.

That was when a giant baby bird looking thing leapt up and snatched the fruit from her hand. It chirped excitedly and dipped back into the nest.

“Good boy!” She cheered, finally noticing me. “Walden, good morning.”

I noticed that there were a lot of feathers on the ground, many of which looked like the ones from the bird we defeated yesterday. I had a bad feeling this was its nest of monster babies.

Monster babies are scary. They may look cute when they’re young, but they’ll grow into some terrifying things if they get the chance. People usually had to go on quests to take out dens.

“Those things are going to grow up into that bird monster. We should leave them alone.” I told her.

She gasped, looking at me with scornful eyes.

“How dare you say something so cruel? These babies are innocent lives. They can barely chirp, let alone harm a soul.”

She was turning into a mama bird now. Getting too attached to vicious monsters like this would cause nothing but trouble. What if they got hungry and tried to eat her? No doubt they were going to get much bigger eventually.

They weren’t even that cute.

“Look at them. They’re just monsters. If the roles were reversed, do you think they’d be so kind?”

“I don’t care. Animals aren’t humans, so they don’t think like us. But these helpless little babies need support.”

She probably felt bad because we killed their mother. Truth be told, on paper I think I might agree if they weren't monsters. But we weren’t going to stay in this realm very much longer anyways. Why bother looking after these things?

“Monsters are evil, Luna. We can’t train them into pets.”

“Everything has the potential for good. I know it.”

“That’s what I’d expect from someone who’s been sheltered. You’ve barely seen the terrible hands the world gives people sometimes.”

“Sheltered? I came to your world, alone, knowing the danger and even nearly being attacked by monsters myself. I would never call myself sheltered for the risks this journey posed to me!”

She had a powerful voice. Her yells were booming with authority, completely at odds with her usual dainty tone. Just another reminder that this was a royal figurehead I was talking too.

But I couldn’t back down here. I had to make it clear that we’d be putting ourselves at risk if we took them with us.

“I say we leave them.” I replied.

“And I say we bring them with us!”

Just by her voice alone, I nearly felt persuaded…but still, I was looking out for her safety.

“Luna, we can’t take them with.”

She growled at me then stomped her foot.

“You stubborn...stubborn…” the balloon that was her attitude was ready to pop, I don’t know what sort of anger she was about to unleash, “RAPSCALLION!”

That word didn’t mean too much to me, since I’ve heard people get called worse, but hearing her say it with such ferocity meant it was riddled with emotion. It wrenched me up a little on the inside.

Although she had a kind heart, something was telling me this went deeper then just simply wanting to protect monster birds.

I took a deep, sigh, then turned to the birds who looked like they were peacefully taking a nap.

“Ugh…” I grumbled. “Why don’t we talk to Zumi and see what she thinks?”

Luna’s posture returned to its normal upright state. Her eyes also fell on the baby birds, whom she’d been lovingly caring for.

“Y…yes. Let’s do that.”


Zumi was amazed at what we were seeing. So stunned, that she was speechless. That could either be a really good thing, or a really bad thing.

“Well?” I pushed her to answer. “What the heck are we looking at here?”

“Brother, these birds are Golden Favrons. Do you know what they do?”

“No.” I shook my head to her.

Somehow that made Charlie scoff at me.

“Of course, the pre-mage doesn't know anything about monsterology.”

Monsterology? Was that an actual term?

Zumi explained that a Golden Favron was a bird of legend that was said to have been used by kings and warriors of the past.

“Then what did we take out yesterday? Don’t tell me it was their mother.”

Zumi deduced that the bird wasn’t its mother. But it had been here, possibly feeding these birds itself.

“These birds are so majestic, that some creatures actually have the instinct to take care of them. Whoever raises them is said to be blessed with their extreme loyalty.”

So, it looks like I was in the wrong all along. That was a pretty miserable mess up on my part. But was I wrong in wanting to keep Luna safe?

The good news was that it seems Luna must have been blessed, since she seemed to be taking care of them now.

I expected her to be happy, but she looked at me with sad eyes.

“We were fighting over them earlier,” she mentioned. “Has your mind changed?”

She asked me in a way that made her seem really hopeful, not condescending in the slightest over being right.

My nonexistent ego wanted to stick to my guns and avoid these things completely. Even if they were so special, we really didn’t have much luxury to take care of them.

But if they were truly important, leaving them here would be a crime against nature. Especially since we took away their provider.

“Can we tame them, Zumi?”

Zumi nodded. “Easily. Since they like Luna, they’ll probably just follow her when they get big enough to move around.”

Monsters grow up fast. These babies were probably only a few days old. But we didn’t have many days left before our world would lose magic. So if they wanted to follow us, they’d better learn to walk and fly quickly.

“Did I ever tell you all about when I saw one of these majestic birds in the sky?” Charlie started to blaber. “Their feathers radiated rainbows behind them, and sparkling dust rained down from above.”

“Did you hit your head or something?” I commented.

“No! I’ve seen one before with my master,” He replied.

He was no stranger to making up stories for street cred, but if he mentioned his master, he may have actually had some experience here. Or at least, he thought he had. The places egresser mages go are weird.

Well, now we had giant birds joining our adventure. This was going to make things a whole lot intresting.

So, if these things thought Luna was their mother, does that make me their father? I'm too young to be a dad!

Mario Nakano 64
Taylor J
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