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by Cyberwolf and Gamer

Part Seven: THE BATTLE

Daimarou was observing this scene. He had teleported Ariel back to the castle to speed-heal her. Riiya frowned as Ariel faded until she was gone. "You'll pay for this Seravi; and you as well Chacha!!" he cried as he turned to face Seravi.

While the two were distracted, the team of 'Peacekeeper magicians' as Chacha had called them, burrowed their way out of the barrier.

"TAKE THIS!!!!" Riiya roared. FOOM! A barrage of fireballs shot out from Riiya's hands. It hit Seravi, although he managed to protect Chacha from most of the fireballs. "There are too many!" Chacha cried helplessly.

"Marin's mystical magic, protective shell appear!" Marin got inside, her face black and burned. "Now you call little ol' me when you defeated my darlin' Riiya."

" She cares about nothing!!" Yakko cried furiously. "Get out of that disgusting shell, coward!" Yakko screamed.

Marin stuck her little ol' head out of her shell and snapped back at Yakko, "This shell is not disgusting. You, on the other hand, are."

Yakko cried out words I shouldn't write here. " Get out of there!!" She screamed again. But Marin, being Marin, wouldn't come out.

Yakko looked even more furious. " If that's the way you like it, then try this! Yakko's potion Letter K!!" KA- BOOM!

Chacha glared at the two rivals who were now exchanging looks of hatred. "We're supposed to be fighting Riiya, not ourselves!" Chacha yelled angrily at Yakko. " Well, she was annoying," Yakko replied bluntly.

"We'll have to work together just to keep Yakko and Marin from fighting!" Suzu cried. Chacha just sighed and went away from the two rivals.

Riiya was standing on his wind transport; it looked like he was flying. "Give it up Seravi, no use fighting me."

"I have barely began to fight," Seravi replied.

Riiya grinned and mouthed the words, 'It's your funeral.' He pointed his index finger toward Seravi. Drake still lay on the ground, but he was picked up by Shiine. Suddenly, the ground began to shake.

Riiya snapped his fingers and smiled menacingly. On cue, an enormous fiery dragon rose up from the ground and locked a stare at the crowd of the magicians. "Time to die, y'all," Riiya said, mocking the mermaid, as he grinned evilly at the magicians.

Daimarou laughed at the sheer terror on the faces of the team of magicians. Ariel came up to her master, her arm bandaged and the burns on her face gone. She looked at the magic blue flame and smiled in anticipation. 'Riiya's winning!' she thought, her eyes sparkling. Daimarou looked down and saw the young girl watching the flame.

"Would you like to join your partner now, Ariel?"

"Could I?" She looked at him hopefully.

"Okay, but be careful, your arm isn't completely healed."

"I'll be fine, milord!" With that she started to fade until she was completely gone.

Daimarou was pleased. The hate he instilled in the two children was so intense that it drove them to fight no matter what.

The dragon spread its massive wings, and flapped once, twice. As it began to rise, the fiery glow around it disappeared and revealed a hide of shiny black scales.

It spotted the red-hooded girl behind the man with green hair and white robes. It continued to glare at them as it soared into the sky, dwindling in size.

From about 500 feet, the hideous dragon seemed to freeze in midair. Then it folded its wings to its body, diving down at a speed no creature could match.

Seravi realized what the creature was doing. 'It's going for the killing dive!'It was going for the dive, just like the eagles and hawks he had seen hunt at the meadows near the Bon-bon mountain.

Also, he noticed that Riiya's now-golden eyes were closed, and his forehead puckered in concentration. He himself was directing the dragon, guiding it like a pilot steers his jet fighter. It took a lot of the wolf-boy's power and most of his attention. Then again, it was a massive power... Serevi knew that a spell creating something like this wouldn't need constant supervision, like Riiya's creation, but would take a day or more to cast.

Chacha huddled next to Seravi as the dragon came racing down. Dorothy stared up and suddenly began to yell hysterically. "Why are we just standing here!??! Shouldn't we be fighting our enemies!!?? We're making it too easy for that dragon to kill us all!!!!"

Seravi snapped out of his trance and began to give orders. "Dorothy, take the kids to a safe place where the dragon cannot hurt them!!"

"But wher---"

"Just find a place!" Seravi yelled.

The dragon crashed into the ground near Seravi, tree-trunk-size talons digging into the earth, causing him to fly fifteen feet to his side.

Riiya spared enough concentration to watch as the magicians frantically ran around like ants which were attacked by a foreign force. Just then Ariel's image began to materialize behind Riiya. He had not yet noticed, though.

"I told you it was your funeral," he yelled with complete confidence. 'No way to stop me now!' he thought happily.

Unfortunately, he had yet to learn to beware things that come quickly and easily. He should have been on his guard... However, thought Daimarou as he observed the fight, this could be the opportunity for a lesson.

"My turn, Riiya."

"What the- who said that?" Riiya turned around quickly and then laughed, "Oh, it's you, Ariel! Are you okay?"

"Yeah, Master Daimarou said I was lucky it wasn't that strong a fireball. I was hit at point-blank range."

While the two were talking, Seravi attacked. Fireballs burst out from his hands. Ariel was facing Seravi, so she pushed Riiya aside and froze the fireballs with a blast of polar wind.

"Thanks!" he cried while he charged towards Seravi. But he underestimated his opponent's former uncertainty for weakness. A mistake.

Serevi cast a spell so that a sword made of magic energy, crackling like lightning, appeared in his clenched hands. Assuming a sword-fighting stance he hadn't needed for years, he met the boy's headlong rush with a skilled slash of his magic sword. The blade's edge tore through Riiya's face.

Riiya blinked his eyes. He couldn't see... he couldn't see out of his right eye! But blinking more, he realized it was just blood covering his eye. The long, thin gash started at his temple and continued down at a slightly oblique angle to his cheek. It had slashed his eyelid, but left his gold eyes untouched. Riiya was relieved, but his relief died when the pain finally caught up to him.

"Arrrghhhhhh!!!!" Riiya cried out. "That dirty bastard!" He swore furiously, repeating curses he had learned from his uncle in the Navy.

Riiya collapsed; the pain was worse than anything he'd ever experienced. He was out of the fight. Ariel needed to get him away. She slammed her fist into the earth.

CRRRRACK!!! A giant fissure opened in the earth, stopping right before the magicians. "Everyone freeze!" ordered Serevi, afraid that someone might fall in the trench.

Ariel was sweating, her heart beating madly. She thought it seemed as if you could hear it from miles away. A pool of blood spread by her fallen partner's side. The magicians couldn't do anything until they cast a bridge-spell. Using her elemental powers, she made the earth swallow both of them up, transporting both lycanthropes to Daimarou's castle.

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