Sometimes it is better not to know.
Inside Thalia’s house, Johnny, Davina and Ghost all sat in a stark, white room. Thalia tapped Ghost on the shoulder and handed him the animal staff. It writhed and wriggled when he touched it. Two creatures fought their way to the surface. The first was a rat and the second a pig. ‘How apt,’ said Thalia with a smile.
Ghost stared at the staff with all the cheeky rats and pigs grinning at him. ‘What does that mean?’
‘Well, young man, it shows that your personality is made up of the characteristics of those two animals,’ replied Thalia.
Ghost stared at the two creatures; he found them sweet and endearing. ‘What so… I am rat-like and pig-like?’
Thalia shook her head, ‘No, the rat is a survivor and the pig is something that can be relied upon. It’s a highly intelligent animal.’
Davina smiled, it made sense why Ghost had a tendency to avoid confrontation and instinctively wanted to scurry off when situations became difficult.
‘Ghost hand Johnny the staff,’ said Thalia noticing Johnny considering what he was.
Johnny excitedly snatched the staff. All the different animals wriggled and wrestled to the surface.
‘The puma and the eagle are your main traits Johnny,’
Thalia studied Johnny, ‘You hide your traits well young man.’
Johnny didn’t understand, ‘I don’t get it… What are you saying?’
‘The puma is an elusive, calculating animal and the eagle with its foresight is a predator and a hunter. You don’t instantly reveal that in your demeanour.’
Johnny gazed back at Thalia.
‘I’ll be interested to see how your true traits rise to the surface during this conflict,’ she said. Thalia raised her arm; a few moments later Elora swooped through the window and landed on Thalia’s outstretched arm. She squawked and appeared to whisper into Thalia’s ear. Thalia took back the staff, tapped it and gazed at Elora.
‘So let’s see what is happening on the outside world,’ she said.
The walls surrounding the group took on a three-dimensional form. All the visions Elora had witnessed were transferred through the staff, each appeared like a cloud floating about the room. Davina gasped; some of the ice had melted off the volcano range, yet Purdeus city remained completely encapsulated in ice. At the same time, the newly birthed Grotesques flew in formation to the other cities in the world and pelted them with lava bombs.
‘Why is she doing this?’ asked Davina in awe.
‘Because she’s taking her revenge,’ said Thalia sadly.
‘But what makes a person become so… so vicious, vindictive and cruel?’
Thalia shook her head slowly, ‘Davina, some people can suffer so much torment that when it comes down to it they want to take out all their hurt on others. That is what the Chimera has become. Her heart has grown dark and destruction makes her feel powerful. Watching other people suffer is vengeance for what she endured.’
‘But these are innocent people,’ Davina shook with rage. ‘Why does she want to destroy everything?’
‘She intends to exterminate humanity, she will not hurt nature. She can only destroy that which is manmade including man.’
‘We have to stop her!’ cried Davina, about to launch herself into the outside world.
Thalia pulled Davina back, sat her down and sighed, ‘Davina you are going to have stop being so impulsive and learn to make decisions well. Your natural impatience is making you rush into this. Any kind of conflict takes strategy and proper planning. If you notice the Chimera’s strategy – she’s using her anger to direct her forces. She simply wants revenge against the humans. To do this she is bombing every city in the world. What will she achieve through doing that? Complete annihilation yes – but what is the purpose of her outcome? She has not thought about the repercussions of such destruction.’
‘I don’t understand?’ said Davina.
‘We, the Gargantuans, need humanity to validate our existence. We have no purpose without providing inspiration to humanity. So you see what the Chimera has done is simply exercise revenge and not considered the bigger implications. Without humanity, there is no point in her existence either. So, the destruction taking place is pointless. Unfortunately her bitterness will not allow her to see past the hurt and pain in her heart. By hurting others, she believes she will feel better. That is so far removed from the truth – I just wish she could see that,’ she said Thalia shaking her head. ‘What you need to do Davina is devise a strategy and follow it precisely. Davina, the mark of a great leader is clear, concise and definite decisions. These decisions will change slowly – if at all. Never make your decisions based on anger or frustration. You will need a clear head and a peaceful heart to do your absolute best. Make decisions with clarity and feeling, that way you will make good decisions. I think that’s what you need to spend this time concentrating on. Your combat skills are good enough as they are.’
Davina sighed, her natural impulse was to get out there and fight. She understood what Thalia said, she needed to hold back and come up with something original. The way she had been working before had not been systematic. She was impulsive, unfortunately that characteristic was intrinsic to her. Still she needed a system and now she had to develop the perfect strategy and exercise it with military precision. She would build herself a force to be reckoned with and would lead her warriors to the best of her ability, with fewest casualties. That was how she was going to approach the conflict. She would not be drawn into a fight so easily.
Thalia watched Davina, ‘So do you understand how you are going to deal with this?’
‘We need to focus on finding the leader and remove her source of power,’ said Davina definitely.
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