She wondered what else she did not know about her traveling companions. Her sister, Esmeralda kept staring at Twilight. Yurie noticed that too. She put a possessive hand on his arm, as to say he is MINE, hands and eyes off.
The King suggested that everyone be shown their rooms to freshen up before the big feast that night. Sketch asked Yurie if she had a dress to wear to the feast. Yurie said yes I do. The servants lead the guys in one direction and the ladies in another. Yurie did not like this. Sketch assured her that the guys would be alright on the other side of the castle. After an hour, everyone came back to the throne room. When Yurie appeared in the doorway, everyone stopped talking and stared at her. She looked beautiful. Even Twilight did a double take and his jaw hit the floor. The Court Jester dropped his balls because he was staring at her. Lloyd gave a low whistle of appreciation. Sketch was a little jealous that everyone including her father was giving Yurie so much attention. Didn't ever see an otterwoman in a dress before? Granted she did have great legs and a well developed torso region.
The buglers blasted their trumpets announcing that dinner was ready. Before Sketch could move, her mother snagged Twilight's arm, the King escorted Yurie, and so she was left escorting Lloyd into dinner. Heaven help me she thought I have to sit and have Lloyd staring at me in total adoration the whole evening. UGH! Dinner proceed with everyone having conversations with their neighbors. Everyone was having a good time except Esmeralda. She left that she was not getting all the attention she deserved as the new princess.
She sat next to the King and pouted during the whole meal. When the dancing started, she stood and demanded that Twilight have the first dance with her. He smiled and said if you wish to risk your toes, let's dance. Esmeralda gave her sister, Sketch, a dirty look as to say ha I got to dance with him first. By the end of the dance, Esmeralda's toes were hurting her terribly. She had to sit out the next few dances. When it was Yurie's turn to dance with him, she asked him why he stepped on Essie's toes on purpose. He told her that he did not like her and her snotty attitude; he can only deal with 1 bratty princess at a time. She got his meaning and slammed on his foot. He limped off the floor with her laughing at him. Next Lloyd got to dance with Sketch. He spent the whole dance trying to kiss her cheek. She kept flicking his ear. Everyone was tired by the end of the dance. Gradually everyone started to wander off to their rooms. Esmeralda followed Twilight and cornered him at the door to his room. She opened the door and pushed him into the room. She said "Let's chat!" She threw herself at him. He sidestepped and she went sprawling across the bed. Just then the King walked in.
He saw his baby on the bed and Twilight on the other side of the room, shivering in fright. The king walked over to Twilight and grabbed him by the arm. Twilight was trying to talk but could not put 2 syllables together. The King took him to the door and threw him out and said "Excuse me, young warrior; I have to have a talk with my daughter." Standing outside the door was the Queen and Sketch. They saw the horrified look on his face and took pity on him. They told him that Essie has a reputation of following guests to their room and throwing herself at them; trying to get them in compromising situations to start trouble between the kingdoms. Twilight admitted that she scared him. If Yurie saw her on his bed, Yurie would eat her alive. Sketch commented that Yurie was very possessive of him. She has a right to be because I am her personal bodyguard and servant. I have been with her since she was 5 years old.
Just then Yurie and Lloyd came walking down the hall. When she saw everyone chatting, she asked where the party was. Sketch said in Twilight's room. Yurie gave him her we will talk later look. "Oh boy! Is he in trouble or what?" Yurie said "Or What" The Queen said "Not as much as Esmeralda is!" Twilight explained what was happening and Yurie decided that Twilight would bunk with Lloyd that night. Lloyd called dibs on the bed. The 2 guys walked down the hall to Lloyd's room while the 3 ladies watched them. Then Yurie and Sketch headed to their rooms and the Queen stood guard so that no one else tried to play leap rooms that night.
As everyone was settling down, there was an eerie cry heard throughout the castle. It was Esmeralda getting a spanking by the royal spankers.
The next morning, Essie was not present at breakfast. The Queen announced that she was having breakfast in her room. Everyone just looked at each other and returned to eating their own breakfast. The King asked them if they were staying longer. Twilight said no that they needed to continue their journey but he is very thankful for his hospitality and headed to their rooms to repack their gear and to get ready to leave. As they were meeting up in the throne room again, they heard Sketch yelling at her father. She was telling him that she was going with the trio on their quest. He was refusing to give his consent. The queen was trying to get both to calm down. Sketch reminded him that he had already agreed to her quest and this was a continuation of that quest. He started to laugh and gave her a hug. "You are right, my daughter, I agreed, so I must let you go." Just then, Twilight stepped forward and pledged that she would under his protection just as the others are. The king shook his hand and said "anything happens to my little girl and I will have your head on a platter!" Twilight gave a small chuckle and rubbed his neck.
The quartet set off down the road to the cheers of the townspeople and little children running alongside them. Once Twilight stopped and gave one little boy a hair ruffle and told him that he will have his own adventure one day. The little boy smiled up at him. Yurie gave him a look that said you are such a softie. Once they reached the gates of the capital city, they turned and waved to the King and Queen who were standing on the wall of the castle. What they did not see was Esmeralda peering out of a window. She vowed to herself to get revenge on them for the pain they caused her last night. How dare they get her, a princess, spanked? Twilight will pay double for rejecting her advances. She started to plot her revenge.
They started down the road that would lead them to the kingdom of Yellow Meadows. Lloyd kept up a steady stream of conversation along the way. Everyone was in a joyful mood, laughing and teasing each other. They decide to not stop for lunch but to keep walking while they ate. They made it to the halfway marker along road to the next kingdom. Yurie suggested they stop at the next grove of trees that they come to. Everyone agreed. They saw a bunch of trees along the road side about an hour later. While the girls set out the bedrolls and get the food ready to cook, Lloyd and Twilight went to gather firewood. They split up at the edge of a clearing and agreed to meet at the other side of the clearing. While walking through the forest, Twilight came upon a den entrance. He was curious and started to peer into the opening. There was a low growl. He took a step back and pulled out one of his daggers.
Suddenly something pounced on him. He rolled over and pinned the animal to the ground. As he was raising his dagger to kill the animal, he saw tears in its eyes and it had a ruby necklace around its neck. He began to scan the creature with his eyes and realized that it was a female. He asked her if she understood what he was saying. The creature shook its head yes. He asked can you speak. She shook her head no. He asked her if he got off of her will she try to kill him. She shook her head no. He failed to notice that she was blushing. He got off of her and she scampered back towards her den. He took a step forward and she growled again. He started to talk quietly and calmly to her. He told her that he was not there to hurt her. He was only gathering firewood for his friends and himself to cook some dinner. At the word dinner, her ears perked up and her tail started to wag. He asked are you hungry. She wagged her tail even faster. He started to ask her if she was hiding something. She backed up and gave a warning growl. He reassured her that he was not there to harm her. She got up and went into the den. Twilight did not move and waited. She returned carrying something wrapped in a cloth. She dropped it at his feet. She pushed it towards him with her nose. Twilight reached down and opened up the package. He jumped back in surprise.
Looking back at him from a picture is the most beautiful girl he has ever seen. It was in a leather bound book. The book appeared to be the history of a family. By the pictures, they appeared to be humans. How could that be, thought Twilight. The creature was making a gesture from the book to herself. Twilight asked her if the book was about her family. She shook her head yes. Twilight continued to look through the book, He came to the last chapter, it was entitled 'Jessica'. He looked at the creature and asked her if her name was Jessica. She shook her head yes again. He started to read the chapter and learned that Jessica was part of a werewolf family that had been exiled from Blue Fathom hundreds of years ago. He noticed that the writing was different in a few of the chapters. He guessed that a different family member wrote each chapter. Just then he heard Lloyd calling his name. Jessica grabbed the book in her mouth and ran into the den. Twilight told her that he would be back to see her soon. He took off towards Lloyd's voice do he would not discover Jessica.
He met up with Lloyd at the far side of the clearing and helped him carry the wood he had gathered. They made it back to the camp site and started a fire so dinner could be cooked. After everyone had their fill, Twilight sensed that something was watching them. He got up slowly and turned to peer into the woods behind him. He could just make out the glowing eyes of Jessica. He sat back down and asked Yurie if she remembered hearing any stories about werewolves in Blue Fathom.
She told him that she had heard bedtime stories about them and that they had lived in her kingdom but were driven off because people claimed that they had eaten some children. It was about 4 months later that they discovered that it was not the werewolves but a raiding party from the kingdom of black magic. Her great grandfather had tried to find them and invite them back but he could never find them. Twilight asked her what she would do if she found one of the family members. She told him that the lands and property that was taken from the family have been saved for them if they ever come back to Blue Fathom. The conversation turned to what they could expect to find in the next kingdom of Yellow Meadows. Soon everyone was settled down for the night. Twilight started to get out of bedroll and Yurie asked him where he was going? He said that he was going to find a place to relieve himself. She rolled back over and went back to sleep. Twilight moved to the edge of the forest and Jessica was sitting there waiting for him. He asked her if she had heard everything. She shook her head yes and he noticed that there were tears in her eyes. He walked a little further into the woods so the others would not hear him talking. Jessica followed him. When he turned around, he saw that she had the pack in her mouth again. She gave to him again. He opened it up again and saw that along with the book was an amulet. She nudged his hand when he pulled it out. He tried to figure out what she ws trying to tell him. It took him awhile but after asking a few questions, he finally figured it out. The amulet belonged to her mother. He packed everything back into the pack and retied it for her.