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PNPC Lieutenant JG Wyla Avae - Twibble Quest: The Search For The Spine, Part III


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Part 3 of the Twibble Saga ...

(( Shattered Halls of Cata Maran ))

The halls seemed to go on forever, like a labyrinth of the same stone worked to resemble the familiar corridors of the ship she’d called home for so many years. Except, as they progressed the stone was more cracked, more sparks showered them as they passed, more passages that had collapsed entirely. 

Wyla was finding it harder to focus on everything. They had been in so many fights. The darkness all around them just outside her protective light had repeatedly managed to send shades through. Harming themselves in the process just to get to her. 

Her brave, wonderful protectors through all of that were still with her. Even after they’d nearly lost Ribble to a swarm of shades because he stood between her and them, tearing the shadows apart while they reciprocated. Libble had healed him as she did, only for Swibble to smack him, then hug him, then tell him that she still had a higher total of vanquished shades than him by two. These protectors didn’t lose their joy and hope. It helped her to keep on, even though all she could do was lay there on Twibble back. 

Her poor Twibble. Even his beautiful fur was showing signs of the battles fought. Some of the shades had started to manifest magic during their last battle, they hurled orbs or beams of darkness that oddly burned when they hit you. A few patches of fur were singed slightly but the powerful lion still carried her on. 

Pwibble: There! The exit of the Halls! 

The navigating twibble proclaimed, their anchor pointed in the direction ahead where a faint light bloomed still. Wyla smiled a bit and looked up at the exit. Maybe they were close to the artifact now! 

Avae: Good news! Thank you Pibble, you did so well to get us through all of that. 

The twibble beamed a smile at her and the others rushed with vigor out of the open doorway. The light grew brighter for a moment so she shielded her eyes and when her vision cleared again she looked about. 

Where she had hoped to see a bright open sky was that ever present and oppressive darkness. Only her own light showed the terrain around them. Sand? She heard the crunch of sand beneath Twibble’s claws as the troupe continued onward a few meters from the exit to the Halls. 

Wyla looked back, seeing an oddly Akira shaped mountain side, with several peaks broken and piled like hills of rubble. 

Swibble: Finally! Warmth!

Ribble: Thou art nary going to letteth that rest, are thee? 

Swibble slowly turned back to Ribble and blepped ever so slightly, their tongue stuck out just enough to get the point across before the pair exchange childish gestures with one another. Wyla couldn’t help but giggle. 

The sound must have been odd, or something because she felt all of their eyes on her and she blushed a little. 

Avae: W..what did I do?

Twibble: You laaughed Wyla. The fiirst time since we found you. 

Libble: He’s right. It’s a great sound. And see, the light is brighter! 

She was right. As Wyla looked up she noticed her illuminatory bubble had extended a little bit. Letting them see more of the terrain. They were indeed on a beach. The sound of heavy rolling waves filled the air, and she could smell the sea. But it was otherwise eerily quiet. There were no birds. 

And the sand looked black, but it squeaked when they walked. For a moment, it reminded her of the party on the caldera. With sand so soft it squeaked too. She missed being able to feel the sand under her feet. To be able to curl her toes into it. 

The light flickered. 

Twibble: Wyla…Wyla…aare you alriight?

Sickly groans echoed around them as the sand shifted, bubbling up or rising as figures, dozens of them emerged from beneath. Bodies. Glowing red eyes. Corpses. 

Libble: Oh no…I know where we are. 

Swibble: Well, tell us!! 

She demanded while holding her blade in hand. All of the twibbles readied themselves and moved to defensive positions around Wyla and Twibble. 

Libble: The Bay of Sickness. 

(( Bay of Sickness ))

The horde of risen corpses shambled towards them all, their clothes tattered mixes of gold and red and blue and teal. 

Ribble, Sylara and Swibble covered the left flank, fighting with blade and fist, claw and beak. As each zombie fell, four more rose up. Ribble had started using the pair of climbing axes that, to this point, had just hung from his belt. The incorrigible pair called out each felled enemy, adding to their tallies. 

Pwibble swept aside several in front of them with each swing of that anchor, but more just rose up behind them. 

Libble bolstered them all with her medkit and patched up wounds. 

While Kwibble fought hard to cover the right flank, that sword cleaved several. 

While Twibble spun in place, slapping, clawing, biting and roaring at each zombie in turn. They moved down the beach, a constant slog of a battle but they were moving forward. Not losing ground. 

A bright burst of dark fire erupted suddenly in between Ribble and Swibble that sent both of them into the air a few meters before they hit the sand again. Singed. 

All eyes shifted ahead to a tall figure, skeletal, eyes glowing bright red but more crisp than the zombies. Wyla squinted to see them and could swear that they were made of metal bones. The right arm was a large crossbow, with bolts that seemed to magically replenish and burned with a dark green fire at the tips. 

The left hand glowed with an orb of darkness, more magic. 

Skeleton: Fools. If we fall, we will always rise again. 

They gestured and the dark orb burst dozens and dozen of black tendrils that struck the already defeated corpses. Each one touched was enveloped in the tendrils that wrapped around them, being lifted back to their feet, their eyes aglow once more. 

Swibble: ::She picked herself up off the sand:: Fvadt!

Wyla cringed. Her brave protectors got back up, stood around her and readied for more fighting. For the first time since she woke up here, they’d stopped moving forward. She saw the skeleton’s ballista arm point in her direction  and fire. It flew so fast towards her she didn’t realize she’d yelped until it exploded a couple of meters in front of her. She winced and waited for pain that never came. 

Bravely she opened an eye and saw the most beautiful shimmering dome of energy around them all. Vibrant blue that had coalesced around them somehow. 

Kwibble: Yes!!!! I knew she’d make it! 

Wyla looked to Kwibble who excitedly gestured with the ancient sword of hers to an outcropping of rocks by the shore to their right. Standing atop it was a lone twibble in blue, with similarly pointed fur to Ribble and Swibble though she had a cute little fur ponytail. She held  a small talisman in hand that glowed with light, rectangular-ish in shape that looked like the newer Tricorders.  Their other hand outstretched towards Wyla’s group, the limb also aglow with the same blue energy as the barrier around them. 

N: I would have been here sooner but I had to find a replacement. ::She held up the talisman:: 

Kwibble: You’re in twibble now you shiny metal monster! ::She called out to the skeleton ahead:: 

Wyla smiled at Kwibble’s enthusiasm, despite the terrifying sight around them. The shield eventually lowered and the mage with the ballista arm turned its focus onto their new arrival. 

Avae: ::she whispered to the lion she clung to:: Who’s that? 

Twibble: Niibble. 

She blinked. 

Avae: Are you asking me to nibble you, or that you’ll only tell me if I let you nibble me? Or you’ll tell me after you finish nibbling on that zombie? I’m confused. 

There was a rumbling chuckle from the lion, which was a little awkward given that he had a zombie in his mouth at the time. 

Twibble: ::He spit out the zombie:: Nibble’s her name. She’s our Sage. 

The Antosian’s mouth opened into an ‘oohhhhhh’ and she nodded. Now they had magic of their own.  Maybe they could get through this after all. 

To be continued….


Lieutenant JG Wyla Avae

Chief Nurse
Keeper of Twibbles

as unconsciously simmed by 

Lieutenant Commander Toryn Raga 

Second Officer/Chief Tactical & Security Officer

USS Astraeus NCC-70652

Astraeus Staff Member

Writer ID: A239410TR0


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