The Kougra Klan: Part Four
Encircled by brutes, Riyita and Guanya stood back to back;
Guanya holding out his pole defensively, face set in sheer determination, and
Riyita just looking terrified. She cowered as one of the Kougras stepped forward.
"We have come for Oka," he boomed.
"Oka?" she whimpered in reply, though her feeble
voice barely escaped her throat.
"Oka belongs to us," said another familiar voice
behind her. It was a deep, rasping voice, and it sounded is if he were sneering
at her. Yes, it could have been no one else but one--the Kougra who confronted
her all those years ago in the village, the Kougra from earlier that morning.
She spun around to see his scarred, leering face ogling at her once again. He
winked at her as he caught sight of the intense fear in her eyes. She knew he
recognised her too.
"My name is Guanya," Guanya said in the bravest
voice he could manage, "and that is the only name I go by."
The old Kougra chuckled at Guanya's supposed
bravery. He stepped right up to the younger Kougra, and was surprised to see
he didn't flinch. Then again, he wouldn't expect any less from a member of the
Kougra Klan. A grin spread across the old Kougra's face.
"But that's not your real name, is it?" he sneered,
lowering his face to Guanya's level.
"It is. It's the name Riyita gave to me," Guanya
spat back, receding slightly.
"You don't belong to Riyita," said another
dim-sounding Kougra from behind him. Riyita's lip quivered as she looked between
Guanya and the two fearsome Kougras. She had always dreaded that this would
happen, that her past would catch up on her; now it had.
"Yes, I do!" shouted Guanya, clenching his paws
into fists in anger.
The old, scarred Kougra, who seemed to be the
ringleader, came even closer to Guanya, curling his paw around the pole and
pushing it down. He was so close Guanya could feel hot, rancid breath on his
face and neck. The young Kougra gulped, though he was trying his best to look
"Look here," the Kougra growled, now in a very
low voice. "You have Kougra Klan blood in you. You belong to US!"
Guanya staggered back, almost knocking Riyita
"The Kougra Klan?" he gasped. "I've heard about
"Who?" said a confused Riyita, regaining her
balance. Guanya did not reply; he did not do anything for a minute, only gazed
at the Kougras around him in amazement. Eventually he spoke.
"They say you have powers unimaginable to any
Neopet..." he said, his voice filled with awe at seeing these Kougras with his
own eyes. "They say you can travel as the speed rays travel from the sun!"
The brawny Kougra just folded his arms and looked
very proud of himself. Riyita's eyes darted from him to Guanya, and her heart
sank as she saw how amazed Guanya looked as he stared at the powerful group
of Kougras, all clad in black bandannas. He looked completely amazed. Was the
thought of joining the bullies who had destroyed her childhood village and kidnapped
her brother really becoming tempting to him? Having people close to her taken
away against their will was bad enough, but someone leaving her willingly...
that was another thing.
"Come with us, and we can give you power, too..."
said the huge Kougra, a gleam in his sinister-looking green eyes. He beckoned
to Guanya, but Riyita was relieved to see Guanya's expression of astonishment
morph into a glower.
"But you use your power for bad things. You raid
villages, and you kidnap other Kougras," he spat, his eyes burning with passionate
anger. "I could never be one of you, because I'd never do such evil and heartless
Guanya raised his pole again, stepping as far
away as he could from the old Kougra, who rolled his eyes.
"Do you see this?" The Kougra lowered his head
and gestured to his left ear, where a small triangle shaped piece was missing
from the top. The rest of the Kougras lowered their heads too, and Guanya saw
they all had the same sized piece missing from exactly the same spot on their
ears. "We all have it, and we do it to all new Kougras who join us."
"So... what about it?" Guanya hissed. The old
Kougra snorted, and chuckled a little, as if it were obvious.
"Feel your own ear, Oka."
Guanya slowly reached his paw up to his own left
ear, begging that it wouldn't be there, that he was normal. He parted the fur
a little, and then ran the paw over the top of his ear. Then he felt it. A small
triangle shaped piece, missing. He slowly dropped his hand back to his side,
staring straight ahead of him blankly as the realisation set in. He was one
"Guanya...?" Riyita said, placing a paw on his
shoulder. Guanya could not look at her.
Suddenly, the vicious old Kougra whipped out
his own huge wooden pole, swinging it around in his paw skilfully. It was very
long and thick, which strips of leather wound around each and the 'KK' symbol
scratched into it. Compared to it, Guanya's puny broom handle looked like a
twig. The Kougra tossed it up into the air, watched it calmly as it spiralled
back down towards him, and caught it perfectly. Stamping one foot down in front
of the other, he pointed his weapon straight towards the two Neopets, and they
knew he meant business.
"Now, Oka, are you going to come with me?" he
said, a malicious grin spreading across his face, "Or are you going to make
Stunned silence swept through the small clearing;
the two smaller Neopets stared in horror at the colossal Kougra who towered
above them, while he just grinned toothily from ear to ear, brandishing the
huge pole in his paw. Images and thoughts were flashing through Riyita's--and
Guanya's--heads so fast they felt dizzy. However, while Riyita was simply panicking,
Guanya was desperately trying to conjure up a plan in his head. What he had
just found out had become the second thing on his mind. Escape was his priority.
When the Kougra began to advance, pole twirling above his head, he knew he had
to think of something fast.
"I won't have to make it difficult..." he blurted
out suddenly, raising his eye line to the treetops above him and nodding his
head in some kind of gesture. "He'll do it for me."
Perplexed expressions on their faces, all the
Kougras raised their heads to look up at the trees above them to see who was
there. Suddenly, Guanya whipped out his broom handle and swept it under the
feet of the Kougra in front of him so he went tumbling to the ground with a
gruff cry of 'oof'. Wasting no time, he seized Riyita by her arm, jumped over
the collapsed Kougra and hurtled through the trees.
"What are you doing?" Riyita cried as she was
dragged along faster than her feet could keep up with. She could hear a stampede
of heavy footsteps charging after them.
"I'm making it difficult!" Guanya shouted with
a grin, his feet pounding underneath him as he wound through the trees and ducked
under branches, leaves and twigs brushing past his fur. The surroundings seemed
to just rush past Riyita's face in a blur of green as she stumbled along blindly.
Guanya's grin soon faded as a Kougra swung down
from a branch ahead of them and landed on the path with a thud, which sent dust
billowing from the ground around him. Guanya began to pull Riyita in another
direction, but the footsteps came up behind him and they were trapped again.
"Nice try," said the Kougra in front of them
in a mocking voice, readjusting his bandanna which was slipping over his eyes.
Guanya, however, wasn't giving up that easily.
In one swift, sudden move, he swung Riyita onto his back and grabbed the tree
branch in front of him, swinging himself up onto it and commencing to scrabble
higher up the tree.
"Get him!" a voice screamed, and the Kougras
below shot into action.
Guanya was so busy concentrating determinedly
on the climb ahead of him he did not notice the paw reach up through the leaves
underneath and attempt to grasp his leg. Riyita, however, did, and anger flashed
in front of her eyes. She wasn't letting them ruin her life again.
"Oh no, you don't!" she yelled, bringing one
of her flailing feet down to stamp on the paw. Its bearer yelled, letting go
with his other paw to comfort it. A stunned Guanya looked down to see the Kougra
fall and land in a heap on top of several others, who lay groaning.
"Nice one!" he remarked, raising his eyebrows.
Riyita only responded by kicking him gently in the side as another Kougra began
to climb up after them, his eyes burning with intense anger. It was the ringleader,
and he looked as if he were about to explode with fury. Guanya's eyes widened
and he began to try and clamber up the trunk again.
"There's no point trying to run, kid!" a voice
boomed from behind him, resonant in the quiet forest. Guanya looked all around
him, frantically scanning the tree trunk for a foothold. There were none. He
was stuck and the distance between him and his pursuer was growing shorter and
Without warning, he flexed his hind legs and
made a huge leap over to the next tree, an almost impossible jump for a young
Kougra. Riyita screamed and squeezed her eyes shut as they flew across the gaping
gap; the only thing below them was the hard, hard ground. She opened her eyes
a few seconds later to find herself dangling a couple of metres above the ground.
Guanya was clinging onto a hanging vine, which looked close to tearing. Kicking
his legs out, he propelled himself into the air and caught onto another branch.
"Ha, you'll never get me!" he mocked, looking
back at the old Kougra, before commencing to swing nimbly from branch to branch
like a Mynci.
"We'll see about that!" was the angry reply;
but Guanya had already taken off into the treetops with Riyita clinging tightly
to his back, and was out of sight.
"This is amazing, Guanya!" gasped Riyita, enjoying
the sensation of the wind rushing past her face and they swung from branch to
branch. "Where did you learn to do this?"
"I didn't spend all that time in the woods for
nothing, Riy," he chuckled.
"Or perhaps it's that Kougra Klan blood you have
in you," the Aisha remarked.
A solemn look fell over Guanya's face and she
instantly wished she hadn't said what she had. The next few minutes were spent
in awkward silence, the rustling of the trees and the cracking of twigs producing
the only noise.
"I think we're safe," Guanya muttered eventually,
before slowing his pace and dropping to the ground. Though she still felt unsafe,
Riyita hopped off his back and began to brush herself down. Guanya bent down
onto one knee and panted, trying to catch his breath.
"Look, Guanya, I'm sorry about what I said, I
shouldn't have..." Riyita began. Guanya stood up and turned to face her, smiling.
"It's okay. Just because I have their blood in
me doesn't mean I have to be one of them. It just means I have an advantage
"Uh, Guanya," Riyita stammered, looking into
the bushes behind him. A dark figure was emerging from the undergrowth, holding
something above his head.
"What is it, Riy?" the oblivious young Kougra
Riyita screamed and lunged forward, but it was
too late. The huge net fell over his head and pulled him backwards so he fell
onto his back. He writhed and yelled at the top of his voice, but he became
more entangled and Riyita was powerless to help him.
The Kougras emerged from the bush behind him
and stood over him as he struggled, laughing.
"Run, Riy!" he bellowed. But Riyita wasn't letting
him go. Not this time.
"You heard him," snarled one of the Kougras,
who was holding Guanya's kicking legs down with his strong arms. "Run!"
"I'll get you back, Guanya," Riyita said in a
hoarse voice. She and Guanya exchanged their last, meaningful glances, his eyes
full of fear, before she turned and ran off in the opposite direction. She heard
a chorus of scornful sniggers from behind her as she melted into the shadows,
and disappeared out of view.
To be continued...