Quest of the Forbidden Hearts
by: Calandra Drakeler
(Warning to fellow readers. This story MIGHT be a little mature for some, and
DOES contain some swear words. So before you begin to read, heed my warning,
this might upset some people. It DOES have the contents of some romance
novels..., so unless you handle the maturity of this,
I’d advise you NOT to read this. If you are prepared, then enjoy. If not, and
you still want to read this...don’t say I didn’t warn you!)
A dark and heartless night had been casted over the city of Anaheim, California, on the planet of Earth. Duke L’Orange, ex-jewel thief & leader of the Brotherhood of the Blade, recently a member of the hockey playing resistance team known as the Mighty Ducks, was inside his own private room, trying to put away visions of his past. But it was impossible, for no matter how hard he tried, the vision of the one who nearly ended his life had come in clearly. The female figure was even closer to him, holding a super sharp knife, made of pure acid. Her dark violet eyes were shining brightly in fury, for what reason she and Duke alone knew why.
“S...stay away, you fiend...don’t come any closer.”
“Forget begging for mercy, L’Orange,” the young girl spoke in a Russian accent with a small French tone inside of it. “You should’ve just surrendered to the police when you had the opportunity. Instead, you ruined your only chance of survival by trying to kill me. Now...it’s your turn....”
He then jerked half-way out of his bed, gasping for breath. Even though it was slightly chilly in the darkness of the night, bullets of sweat were coming down his head and dripping down his beak. The heart inside his bare and semi-muscular chest was pounding so fast it could make a jackhammer seem like a snail. He was worried about whether or not this vision was for real. Would this young Russian girl try to come after him and kill him? No, there was no way that would happen. His Russian enemy was on Puckworld, and he was on Earth. There was no WAY she could get to him, could she? There was no way that could happen. Yet....he was some-what anxious to meet his nemesis again, beak to beak. Was it a small attraction? No way! he thought. Duke hated this girl’s guts. For once, there was a maiden that Duke could truly spurn instead of compete with another guy for her endearment. Knowing that he had to get sleep eventually, he set his head down on the pillows of his bed again. But even in doing so, he couldn’t help but presume if she would come or not. If she did, would Duke be able to put up with the Robin Hood/Anne Bonny wanna-be? Heck, she almost ruined his life as the most notorious jewel thief AND almost had him captured by the Puckworld Police. There was NO WAY he could stand the sassy Russian vixen, IF she ever came to Earth. The chances of that ever happening are 1 out of 1,000,000. The thought of that putting his mind and heart at ease, Duke managed to shut his one eye and sleep.
After what was believed to have been a long night, morning had then came over the city. The sun’s rays had entered the window in his bunk and approached his face. The warmth of the rays warmed Duke enough to open his eye. When awoke, Duke could’ve sworn that something was on him besides the sheets of his bed. When realizing that it was just the heat of the rays of the sun, he felt more calm and relaxed.
Why am I so jumpy this morning? It couldn’t have been because of my nightmare, could it?
After realizing that it couldn’t have been that and removing the covers from his bed(No; he wasn’t naked. He was wearing pants underneath. I’m not a horny pervert), he settled on his long sleeved dark magenta turtle-neck. After combing his long bang that defied the law of gravity until it looked like its normal perfect self, he managed to leave his room. He was suprised that everyone else was up.
“Hey, guys. Y’s everyone up so early?”
“Early, L’Orange?” Mallory questioned suspiciously. “It’s 10. You’re the 7th one up.”
“How can I be the 7th? There’s 2 people missing.”
Nosedive then came walking into the Rec Room, trying to act as his normal calm and cool self.
“Where were you, little brother?” Wildwing asked suspiciously.
“ Brushing my teeth; what else?”
“ You never brush your teeth,” Tanya reminded.
“ Of course I do. Even I care about the way my teeth smells.”
At that very moment, Jessica entered the Rec Room of the Pond. She brushed back a lock of her medium-length bright cinnamon brown hair out of her shoulders of her white shirt with the Nike symbol on the front. Her black pants with a thick blue stripe on each side of her leg and two white stripes on each of the blue stripe’s next to it on each side. Nosedive looked at her as though she was a goddess of beauty.
Man, she’s even more beautiful than when I went to her room a month ago....
“Morning, every1. Dive. Dive..u okay?”
“Uh, yeah, girlfriend.”
“Since when do you call me that? I’m not your girlfriend.”
“But don’t you remember last month, when we were talking, and...”
“All we did was talk, Dive. That’s it. The rest you must’ve dreamed up. Sorry, but I don’t think I recall you and I doing anything else than talking.”
Jessie then walked passed him. Nosedive was in shock. A dream? Was that really what it was? Must’ve been. It must’ve been a fantasy of mine. I just wish that dream was real...maybe someday it will be. Jessica....I wish that kiss between you and me was for real, and not an illusion...
Duke tried to hide his sleepiness, but it was hard since everyone in the Rec Room was giving him odd looks, telling him that they were on to him.
“What’s wrong with you, Duke?” Wildwing asked in great curiosity.
“Um, nuttin, Wing. I’m fine. Just fine. No need to worry about anything, okay?”
“Just asking. You look a little jumpy this morning. Something that you might wanna share with the group?”
Duke realized that everyone was crowding around him and was expecting him to break out and tell him his problem from last night. Should he? Something inside of him just wanted to tell the others about his vision, the vision of his ancient enemy. But he realized that if he did so, they’d probably just laugh at him, telling him that had too much caffeine.
“Well, L’Orange? You gonna tell us, or do we hafta FORCE the answer outa ya?” Mallory asked. Her tone of voice sounded the same as it did years ago when she joined the military. Duke had a frightened look on his face when Mall threatened him. “Just kidding! You know I wouldn’t do something like THAT. But honestly, there’s something wrong with you. You look like you hadn’t slept in days. You mind pushing aside your pride and telling us what the heck is wrong with you?”
“I told you before, Mall, there’s NOTHING wrong with me, I’m FINE. Can we change the subject now?”
“Duke, there is something bothering your heart, causing pain to those around you,” Grin said. “You must learn to push aside your pride and let go of your anger.”
Duke realized that they were on to him and would get him to come clean eventually. But until then, he was somewhat-safe. However, he knew that they would find out what he was hiding from them soon enough. He couldn’t hide his deep secret forever from them. Inevitably, they would find out that he had a nightmare of an enemy of his from their home planet, Puckworld. But they’d probably laugh at him if he told them that his old nemesis was a GIRL. Suddenly, his train of thought had ended when the alarm on Drake 1 went off, signalizing danger.
“What the--?” Tanya started as she analyzed what was going on through her communicator.
“What’s the problem this time, Tanya?” Wildwing asked.
“Drake 1 says there’s a robbery at the National Anaheim Bank. But who’s robbing, I don’t know.”
“It can’t be Dragaunus,” Mallory noted. “He’s interested in conquering the Earth; NOT becoming the richest Saurian alive.”
“Whoever or WHATever it is,” Wildwing started, “We better check it out. Every1; 2 the Migrator!”
When the ducks arrived to the city bank, there were sounds everywhere. Guns blazing, women and children screaming, and men of innocents shouting to the woman and children to get to safety. Analyzing the scene of the crime with the mask of Drake DuCane, Wildwing found out who was responsible for the robbery.
“Those tattoos on their bare backs; the Dragon Gang!”
“The who?” Nosedive asked.
“The Dragon Gang, kid. It’s that new gang of thieves that had the symbols of dragons tattooed on their bare backs. They’ve been trying to rob several banks and jewelry joints the past 2 weeks,” Duke explained.
“Well...c’mon team! We gotta stop them now and put an end to this little gang war of theirs.”
Inward the Mighty Ducks went, into the inside of the bank, where they met up with the Dragon Gang. There were 5 to be exact, each of them half-naked, with Dragons on their bare backs. All of them were very muscular, almost as much as Grin himself. Two of them were bright red-heads, the other 2 blonde, and the last one black. The black-haired man was the leader of the Dragon gang, or so according to the ducks.
“Well, well, well...look what the cat dragged in,” the leader Rick spoke. “A flock of chicks.”
“That’s DUCKS, you morons,” Wildwing countered. “This little war of ours is gonna come to end...and you’re gonna end up in the slammer!”
“Oh no! The slammer,” the red haired man named Mike teased. “Not the slammer. ANYTHING but the slammer.”
“Then how about becoming one with...MY FIST?” Grin asked angrily. If there’s one thing Grin couldn’t stand, it was a sarcastic criminal. ESPECIALLY when that peticular sarcastic criminal had disturbed his inner peace and tranquillity.
“Ahhhh...a wise guy, eh? Well, let’s c if you can live up to that threat,” Dick, the 1rst blonde, remarked.
“So...u wanna see how tough we REALLY are, huh?” Mallory countered. “Well, you got your wish.”
At long last, the gang war had started. Sounds of guns and pucks came from each team. But who was winning was uncertain to the eyes of the innocent. All said that the ducks would win for sure, because they fought for the side of good and justice. AND because they had more members than the Dragon Gang. Then a young boy, about 7 years old, went up to the checking account booth to get a closer look at the action. The second blonde man Danny noticed this, and an evil smirk came over his face.
“Little kids should learn when NOT to interfere with another one’s business. Maybe THIS’ the right time to PROVE that.”
With that, he shot a giant hole in the wall. The pounds of concrete had started to come crashing down. The mother of the child, a short haired blonde in a red business suit with a violet tie, noticed the danger, but was too weak to get up and snatch her only child.
“NOOOOO!!! MY BABY! MICHAEL; GET AWAY FROM THERE!”
When Wildwing noticed the danger, he tried to get to the little boy. Unfortunately, he was too late, for the concrete has crashed onto the floor. The little boy was gone, believed to have been under the concrete.
“NOOOOOO!!! NOT MY ONLY CHILD!! MICHAEL!!!”
With that, the woman started to sob, sob like any mother would in loosing their only child. Wildwing felt guilty about what happened. He should’ve gotten there sooner. If he was just a little bit faster, he would’ve been able to save that little boy’s life. All the Dragon Gang could do was laugh like the idiotic morons they were. Suddenly, everyone was in total shock, for suddenly behind some dust of the concrete, there was a figure kneeling down, looking as thought it was holding something very close 2 it. When the smoke cleared, the figure was a female.
The young female savior of the 7 year old boy had long beautiful black hair, tied in a braid and light brown skin. Her outfit consisted of a bright white bathing suit like-outfit with a low neckline. Under her white swim-suit like tank were skin-tight pants in the color of a light violet color with a green army pattern around it. Around the edge of her pants was a utility belt, with pouches on both sides of her hips, supposedly carrying 2 weapons in them. Around her right hip there was a swirled bullwhip.
The knee pads on her uniform were a dark purple with a green lining. She had the same type of boots as the Mighty Ducks, all white, outlined in silver specks. Under both of her shoulders were arm bands that appeared to have been made of pure gold, even though they were really brass, outlined in red rhinestones around the ends of the bands. On her elbows she had steel shoulder pads, even though they appeared to have been made of pure silver. Around her hands were brown gloves that showed a small rectangular shape around the middle of her hands, revealing the color of her skin. Close to the girl’s neck was heart necklace, clinging close to her neck with two silver bands; one on top, the other on the bottom. The heart was made of pure red ruby with a diamond in the middle of it. When she opened her lashy eyes, they gleamed a dazzling glittery violet. Holding the boy away from her mouth, everyone saw that instead of a mouth, she had a beak. A DUCK’S beak for that matter.
Oh no, Duke started to think. Please don’t let it be...HER.
The young lass then looked down on the boy, smiling at him to assure him that she wasn’t cruel or evil like the people that almost killed him.
“Are you ok, kid?” the lady asked kindly in a Russian accent with a small French tone within.
“Y...ye...yea...yeah...yeah, I think so.”
“Good. Now go 2 your mom and get out of here. This’ no place for a little boy.”
The Russian girl then set the kid down and he ran to his mom. The woman, who was the boy’s mother, quickly took him into her arms, shedding tears of joy and gratefulness to the Russian duck that saved her boy’s life. She then turned her violet eyes to the crimals.
“Okay, u lame excuse for men. Why don’t you turn your attention away to the little kid for a change and try challenging some1 who’ll put up more of a fight? Like say for chance..........................ME?!”
I KNEW it. I KNEW it was her! Why, God? Why did you send her? I know I did bad things in the past, but I changed since the invasion. I’ve gone straight! Duke kept thinking to himself angrily.
“Cool. We get 2 take on a female ducky!”
“I get tibs on her when we’re through,” Mike member suddenly said.
“No way!” the second red-haired guy Nick shouted. “I’m the older one, so I get to fool around with her first!”
Oh god, the Russian female duck started to think to herself. I can’t believe these men are ACTUALLY fighting over me like I’m a piece of beef. Do I look like a whore? No; I’m the lutenit of the military on Puckworld for crying out loud! Heh...maybe when I kick their sorry carcasses, they’ll think twice before accusing ME of being a whore and decide who I bed with. The only guy who I wanna bed with is a husband if I get married, unless I die a spinster.
“Alright men...we’ll decide who gets to ‘play’ with her...AFTER we show her who’s the superiors around here.”
“Yeah...heh...good idea boss. Okay, baby. Time to show you who’s boss.”
“ExCUSE me? Did you just call me ‘baby’?”
“Ummmm...yeah, doll-face. How come? Do you hate those names, chicky-pie? Baby-doll? Sugar?” Dick teasingly asked.
All those names got the female Russian duck angry. It could be told in her eyes, which were starting to burn fire inside. It was NOT a wise idea to call the girl ANY of those names, for everyone made her raging mad. Unable to control her anger, she flipped off the counter and landed right in front of them. She then took out a laser cross-bow and melted all of their weapons. The Dragon Gang was now helpless. The Russian lady had destroyed all of their guns. All they could do now was put their hands up surrender. Snickering in victory, the crude vixen took out a blaster from her left boot and shot at them. It released a rope and tied up every single one of them so tight that all 5 of them were suprised that they could breathe. When the female duck turned her back to the Mighty Ducks, all of them were suprised to see her.
“What’s with you all?” the sassy Russian vixen asked.
“Wh--who ARE you?” Wildwing questioned.
The young girl then opened up a container in the buckle in her utility belt. She then took out the green rectangular compact and handed it to Wildwing. When he opened it, the compact revealed her name and occupation.
“Calandra Drakeler, sir, 2nd Lutenit of 1rst class squadron, Puckworld Special Forces.”
“CALANDRA DRAKELER?!” Mallory asked in total shock.
“Mallory? MALLORY MCMALLARD?!”
“Hold the phone here,” Tanya started. “You 2 know each other?”
“Yeah. We were both cadets in the military before the attack from the Saurians many years ago. How come you’re here, though?”
“It’s a LONG story, Mallory. Well--OH MY GOD!”
“What? What’s wrong?” Wildwing asked.
Callie didn’t answer Wildwing’s question, for was too distracted by the vision of Duke’s face. Anger boiled in her blood at the site of her ancient enemy. She could still feel her anger rising and rising until she wanted to choke the scoundrel to death. Still, she managed to swallow her anger down her throat and confront Duke L’Orange. She then calmly held out her gloved hand to him, in hopes of settling an agreement.
“Well, Duke L’Orange. It’s a suprise to be seeing you here, on Earth, with the Resistance, instead of with the Brotherhood of the Blade. I’m sure you and I can put...what happened in the past...behind us and....start over.”
Duke first looked at the hand with the brown glove, covering her fingers. Then he looked into Calandra’s violet eyes. Anger was deep inside his blood as he turned his head away from her vision.
“What do you take me for, Drakeler; an idiot?”
“Duke, what’s WITH you?” Tanya asked. “The girl’s calling a TRUCE for Pete’s sake!”
“And she’s faking it. The minute I grab her, she’s gonna TWIST it and turn me inside-out. I saw her do that one time.”
“Get over it, Duke. She’s going to be part of us now, so whether or not you make peace with her, you’re stuck,” Mallory reminded.
“You must learn to push aside your pride and learn to accept things as they should be Duke,” Grin told him.
“Kinda hard to do that when what you hafta confront is an old enemy of yours that almost ended my life as the greatest jewel thief of Puckworld.”
“Talk later, Duke. We’ll hear the explanation at the Pond.”
“Yeah, finally!” Nosedive finally spoke. “A chance to relax & unwind a little at the good old Pond.”
At least, that was what Dive claimed to do when they got back, but everyone but Calandra knew that he just wanted to be able to annoy Jessie. After a drive to the Pond, Calandra was shown the Secret Headquarters. She was amazed by everything her gorgeous violet eyes saw. The giant computer, the hallways. Just about EVERYTHING dazzled her. She then sat down on the couch to ease her body some, since she hasn’t been able to sleep much on he count that she wasn’t able to relax much. Military work would easily tire out anyone, especially when your military position’s the 2nd lutenit.
“Okay,” Wildwing started. “I need some answers. WHY exactly are you two enemies?”
“L’Orange here did four things that got my blood boiling. Number 1....he almost costed me my job in the military. Number 2...he almost stole my family’s sacred gem, the Drakeler Diamond. Number 3...he almost raped me, and number 4....HE TRIED TO KILL ME.”
“Well...YOU sliced off my right eye, Drakeler.”
“That’s what you get for trying to rape and kill me, L’Orange.”
“You almost had me arrested.”
“You tried to steal the Drakeler Diamond.”
Duke opened his beak up to say something, but he ended up remaining silent, for he didn’t know what to say. For the first time in 9 years, he was out-smarted by Calandra Drakeler. She then smirked in victory in knowing that she defeated Duke L’Orange in argument combat.
“Okay,” Wildwing finally said. “I’m really confused here. So, I’ll have to hear both sides of the story first. Duke u mind explaining?”
“Hey; how come he gets to go first? We all KNOW he’s gonna lie and re-arrange some of what ACTUALLY happened.”
“::sighs:: Ms. Drakeler...”
“PLEASE don’t call me Ms. Drakeler. Just because my parents were rich DOESN’T mean I’m spoiled & selfish. Just plain old Calandra or Callie’ll be fine.”
“Okay....Calandra. We’ve known Duke the longest, so we’re gonna let him go first. You can explain your side when he’s through. Duke...explain the WHOLE thing, and I want you to tell us the truth, the whole truth, and nothing BUT the truth.”
‘Wildwing...you’re a team leader, NOT a judge,” Nosedive reminded.
Wildwing ignored his baby brother’s silly comment and gave Duke the look that we was serious.
“Well, it all began 6 years before the Saurian invasion. I was about 18 then, in the Honor Blade of the Brotherhood.........”
The change of scene then went to the past on Puckworld, 6 years ago, when Duke was 18 and Calandra was 14. On that fateful night in the Puckworld Museum of History, a much younger Duke L’Orange WITHOUT an eye patch and Ernie Falcone has sneaked into the Museum, knocking out all guards that were guarding the place with the greatest of ease. After careful searching around the building, they noticed a medium sized diamond inside a glass container on top of a blue cushion.
“Duke, buddy...we found it. The Drakeler Diamond. It’s now in our possession. We’ll be the greatest thieves on Puckworld.”
“Shush, Falcone. Do you wanna set the alarms off and get us sent to jail?!”
“Heh...sorry, buddy. Well...u ready?”
“Let me do this. Let YOU do it, and we’ll be caught for sure.”
“Not very gentlemeny of you, old boy.”
Ignoring Falcone’s comments, Duke dodged all the motion detectors that would’ve had the guards all over him and Falcone. Just as he was about 2 nab the diamond, a stone came out of no-where and hit his wrist really badly.
“OWWWWWWWWWW!!!! Geez, Falcone! What the blaze’s with you?!”
“That wasn’t me, buddy. Stone throwing’s not my style. Besides, why would I try to injure my own friend?”
“But if it wasn’t you...then....who WAS it?”
Falcone shrugged his muscular shoulders in puzzlement. Duke didn’t know what to do either. At that very moment, a mysterious figure that was responsible for the stone throwing was about to make her grand escape, that is...until the rope started to give in.
The rope disobeyed her command, for it started to tear even more and more. No matter how hard she tried to keep the rope from tearing, her efforts proved to be worthless, for the rope gave in, having her fall flat on her rear. The mask on her face fell off just then, revealing her entire face, shock and fear in violet eyes with the bangs of her ravishing, velvety and silky raven black hair in her face.
“Calandra Drakeler?! Joseph Drakeler’s youngest and only female brat?!” Falcone asked in total shock.
“Youngest and only female Drakeler descendant, yes. A spoiled and selfish brat...NEVER. I came here to stop you from stealing my family’s sacred diamond. It’s been in the Drakeler family since the time of Drake DuCane. I’m not going to allow 2 ugly bastards like you take what rightfully belongs to my family!”
With that angered remark, Calandra pulled out a blaster she took from one of the knocked out security guards and pointed it at Falcone and Duke. Her chance to kill the two right then and there was too inexorable for her to control. Without thinking, Calandra shot at Falcone first, for if she shot at Duke first, she probably would’ve missed him and shot the security beams instead, placing her into jail as well. Falcone had a hard time dodging, for despite her tender age of 14, she was a sharp shooter. Duke was amazed by her skill. But remembering that she was trying to kill his own friend, he had to jump over the beams and stop Calandra Drakeler from hurting Falcone. When he jumped the motion beams, he ignited his saber and knocked the blaster out of Callie’s hand. Callie was shocked. A thief had dared try to harm her! No one dares to try to harm Calandra Drakeler and gets away with it. NOT because she was spoiled and all, but because in secret, she took martial arts lessons, and had reached the brown level of the Tae Kwon Doe martial arts. She then put up a fighting stance right in front of Duke’s face.
“C’MON, L’Orange. You ready to take me down, or are you a chicken?”
“Duck, actually. And why would I, Honor Blade of the Brotherhood of the Blade, wanna try to take down a 14 year old rich spoiled fungus? It would be...too easy.”
“Heh; tell her, Duke old chum.”
“A rich spoiled FUNGUS?!”
That was the final straw for Calandra, for she can’t stand ANYONE calling her by that name. She then started to grab Duke by the throat and tried to choke him to death. But before Callie could reach Duke’s throat, he grabbed her hand and twisted it.
“Heh heh heh...what’s the matter, little girl? Did I hurt you? So sorry...NOT! Believe me, I could’ve done worse.”
“You mean...something like THIS?!”
With such anger, she kicked Duke in the groin. So hard in fact that he fell on top of Falcone. She then grabbed her blaster from the ground and shot at the chandelier above the 2-some. It crashed down on them, imprisoning them both inside the hollow the corona. She then shot at the motion detector. The alarm sounded. Look of fear were in Duke’s eyes as well as Falcone’s.
“When the guards arrive, you’ll be locked up like the dogs you are. Duke L’Orange and Ernie Falcone, the greatest thieves on all of Puckworld, FINALLY in prison where they belong. It’ll make the front page for SURE.”
With that she laughed like most 14 year old girls. She then took a bullwhip out a her sack around her back and cracked it onto the ventilation shaft. Climbing on, she gave Duke a dirty look that says he should rot in prison like he and Falcone deserve. Leaving them in total darkness with the alarm still sounding and foot steps to be heared, there seemed to have been no hope for the 2. The sounds of police officers were to be heard. The footsteps echoed loudly along with their burly voices.
“This way, men! It must’ve been Duke L’Orange and Ernie Falcone again!”
“Yay! If we catch them, we’ll be promoted for SURE. I might even get to take an overdue vacation.”
When the policemen arrived on the scene, all that was there was a broken chandelier and a small droplet of blood on the ground.
“They escaped! AGAIN!!”
“At least they got away empty-handed, sergeant. Nothing around this room was taken, not even the Drakeler Diamond itself.”
“Well, men....search the place. They couldn’t have gotten far. But remember; they’re armed and dangerous, so use with EXTREME caution when facing Falcone or L’Orange.”
All of the cops splitted up to look for Duke and Ernie Falcone. However, they didn’t know that a little 14 year old girl named Calandra Drakeler was still trapped inside the museum. She couldn’t escape, for there were guards at every entrance, so she would have to wait in one of the exhibit rooms until the coast was clear. Little did she know that Duke and Falcone were also still inside, waiting for the right chance to take what they came for and destroy all those that stood in their way.
Okay... Calandra started to think to herself. I can’t get out because all entrances are being guarded by the police. I’ll just hafta wait until the security lightens up so I can make my escape. I just hope neither Falcone OR L’Orange find me. My life depends on it....wha? Is there something or someONE behind me?
Calandra turned her head, seeing some1 who would very well scare the heck out of her.
“Well, well, Drakeler. Looks like it all comes down to this. I’m just sorry that wimpy father of yours isn’t here to witness your death.”
“Witness THIS! HEYA!!!!!!”
She then knocked Falcone down on the ground with her own feet. He was angered that a girl four years younger than him managed to knock him onto the ground. Flames of rage burning in his eyes as he reached for his glowing sword of sapphire blue. Callie thought quickly on how to take care of Falcone. Suddenly, an idea came to her. Just as he lunged at her with his sword, she managed to slide past him. Using her bullwhip, she cracked it down and used it to grab his wrist. She then twirled it around him until he was tied up so tight that he could scarcely breathe. Calandra then took all of his weapons so that there would be no chance of escaping and attacking her or anyone that would come her way.
“One down, and one to go.”
Falcone struggled to get free from the bullwhip, but it was of no use for him. It was wrapped too tight for him to move. If only he could warn Duke in time. Maybe this could’ve been prevented. Meanwhile, Calandra was searching for a way out. Suddenly, she felt something leathery against her back. She moved her hands all over it to feel what it was, and was scared when she heard a male voice telling her to watch where her hands were. When she turned her head, she saw the face of her worst nightmare.
“Heh...I was wondering where you were, baby-doll...”
“Excuse me?! Did you just call me baby-doll?!”
Duke laughed like a typical thief when Calandra growled in anger from being called baby-doll. No way was he going to get away with insulting her. She then took out Falcone’s blaster and pointed it at him.
“You’d better take that back before I shoot you like the dog you are, L’Orange!”
“H--hey! Isn’t that...FALCONE’S BLASTER?!”
“No duh, ugly.”
“What did you do to him?!”
“Relax. He’s still breathing...probably. But what’s going to happen to you’s 5 times worse than your friend!”
As Calandra was about to pull the trigger, Duke ignited his saber and sliced the blaster in half. Luckily, Callie managed to move her hands out of the way before he could slice them off. Duke then grabbed her shoulders and pinned her against the wall. The more Calandra struggled to get free, the tighter Duke’s grip became. He then crushed his beak against hers. Callie stood there in shock. This, this JEWEL THIEF was actually KISSING her! She could feel the lips of his beak brushing against hers. Despite the force Duke used, his kisses weren’t unpleasant. In a way, she LIKED the feeling of being kissed. But then, a thought came to her mind. She couldn’t get involved with Duke L’Orange! There was no way she could have an affinity with a jewel thief. As Duke was about to kiss her luscious lips again, she tried with all of her might to get free from his strength. But there was no escape from Duke’s fiery embrace or his kiss. His lips were a satanic agony that brought no mercy.
How...am I...gonna...escape from this maniac? I can’t get involved with Duke L’Orange....can I? DO I want to escape from this man? I mean...no! I can’t! I won’t! I gotta find a way out of this. Maybe I can use this to MY advantage instead of HIS....
“Ohhh...Duke. Take me! Take me! Please! I want..no; I NEED you!”
“Heh....don’t worry, Drakeler. They’ll be PLENTY of time for THAT. Right now...I just want to...”
Again and again Duke caressed her lips with the feel of his. Calandra’s plan to lure him in was working even better than she expected. With his obsession with women, she KNEW she could let his guard down long enough to get the drop off him. At the moment, she continued to allow him to kiss her.
“Ohhhh...god; I NEVER knew that you were such a good kisser, L’Orange. Please...I want you...I NEED you. Take me; ohhhhh....in the name of God TAKE ME!!!”
“Then join me...become a member of the Brotherhood of the Blade. Train your skills right, you could become almost as much of a notorious jewel thief as me. We would be together for the rest of our lives. Anything you ever wanted...ever dreamed of...would be in your reach. Become one of the Brotherhood, sweetheart. God, join us. Be with us...be with ME...”
Calandra wrapped her arms around Duke and looked at him straight into his piercing dark jade eyes. She then smiled warmly at him, but while her arms were around Duke, she was secretly pulling out a razor-sharp knife.
“Four words, L’Orange.”
“Oh? And what would those be?”
With that, she raised the dagger even higher so it was now in Duke’s vision. Intending to pierce him in heart, she accidentally missed and hit his eye instead.
He then clutched is eye in pain, blood dripping down from it. She instantly disappeared into the darkness of the night, possibly back to her home. If only he hadn’t let his guard down! Oh, the shame! Being defeated by a rich 14-year old girl. Duke couldn’t BARE to handle that fact. The small sliver of the passionate love he felt for her had not turned to a pure bitter hatred, which he would vow to do whatever he could to get revenge of Calandra Drakeler. How DARE she cut of his right eye! The anguish of it being cut off hurt him more mentally and emotionally than physically. The alarm sounded suddenly. Duke couldn’t think straight. He had to find Falcone and get out of the museum and fast, before they spent their lives in the Puckworld Prison. Frantically he searched around the museum, until he found his friend all tied up.
“FALCONE!” Duke quickly untied his friend who was gasping for air.
“Thanks, old boy. Where were you? And--GOOD GOD! What the blazes happened to your right eye?!”
“Ask Drakeler. She’s long gone by now, and we better do the same thing before we’re caught.”
“Don’t blame ME this time, Duke. I tried to warn you, but she had me all gagged up. That ravishing little morsel is a lot tougher than I expected out of her...”
“Save it, Falcone. We gotta get out of here, before we spend the rest of our lives in the slammer.”
“Right, old boy. Lead the way...”
Grabbing Falcone by the wrist, Duke shoved him into the ventilation shaft and together they both escaped from the clutches of the cops. Falcone was angered at Calandra mainly for ruining the chance to apprehend the Drakeler Diamond. There was no way they could try again because she would only prevent them again and again until the day she died. Duke was angered at her for that, but also for slicing off his right eye and taking advantage of his fondness for her. Now it has become bitter hate, as he vowed revenge on her.
The scenery had just then, from the past on Puckworld to the present on Earth. The only ones who didn’t have their eyes wide open in shock were Calandra and Duke themselves. She looked a little angry at Duke , as if he said a lie of some sort of lie.
“Ehhh...Callie, your side?” Wildwing asked.
“Well, hate to say it, but it’s almost exactly how L’Orange told it, except for 1 difference.”
“And...that would be, Cal?” Mallory asked.
“The kissing scene. I did NOT say ‘Duke..oh DUKE! Take me! Take me! I want you; no..I NEED you...’ Honestly, L’Orange. Whatever put that asinine thought in your thick-minded skull?”
“Alright...she didn’t say that or any of the other stuff while I was...kissing her. I just made that up.”
“Hah! You see?! Once a liar, ALWAYS a liar.”
“No one asked for you to speak out, Drakeler.”
“Well..no one asked you to LIE either, but you did none-the-less. I still can’t believe Canard ACTUALLY allowed you onto the resistance.”
“Hold it, hold it, hold it,” Wildwing cut in. “You knew Canard?”
“Of course. I was part of the resistance on Puckworld as well. I had to change my name to avoid being discovered. The only one’s who knew my ACTUAL name were Canard and Mallory.”
“Who WERE you when you were part of the resistance, Calandra?”
“She used the name Felisha DeMalard to avoid suspicion,” Mallory answered. “I’m still kind of suprised I didn’t reconized her immeditely. But then again, she dyed her hair pink, so I didn’t know it was her then.”
“I served as a spy for Canard. Pretended to be part of Draguanus’s army so I could uphold information about his master computer in his headquarters. I also shutted down the defenses on his so you all could get the drop on him easily. I wanted to come with you when the palace exploded, but there was no way that I could. So I had no choice but to stay behind and help rebuild Puckworld and destroy all remaining hunter drones.”
“I still have one more question, Lutenit Drakeler,” Wildwing started. “How exactly DID you get from Puckworld to Earth?”
“Oh, very simple. A few days ago, one of our military cadets found out where you were. Unfourtunetly, we didn’t have enough power to send you back. Admiral Featherson also found out that you didn’t complete your mission on capturing Dragaunus. He couldn’t risk him conquering the universe with you all gone, so he decided to send his #1 soldier out to lend you a helping hand. And what do you know...they chose me.”
“Somehow, Drakeler,” Duke mumbled under his breath, “I doubt that YOU were their first choice.”
“I heard that, L’Orange!”
“Good! You deserved it, for causing me to lose an eye!”
“Alright Duke; lay off. Well, since you’re going to become one of us, I suppose that means that you’ll be needing a place to stay...”
“Calandra can bunk with me for a few nights. It’ll be like old times in the military. What’dya say, buddy?”
“Sure. I don’t mind. We could talk about old times...and discuss new ones for that matter...”
“Then, I guess it’s settled then. Only temporarily, though.”
“Don’t worry about it. I’m not picky, believe it or not. As long as I can just relax for a few minutes, I’ll be fine. I’ve been a little grouchy for the past few weeks, since I couldn’t sleep. You thought being in the RESISTANCE was tough, try the military!”
Calandra then followed Mallory into her room. Angered glowed in Duke’s eyes as two of the Mighty Duck females walked away. How he had LONGED to take Calandra by the throat, ignite his saber, and cut her from navel to beak, having her blood splatter all over the floor. Or did he? His mind told him that she was the enemy, even if Wildwing considered her part of the team. But his heart, his very heart, held a strange feeling. An urge to take a lock of her glittery soft and silky raven black hair and smell the sweet scent within the strands. To look into her beautiful violet eyes. To kiss her heavanly beak...Duke didn’t think he could be able to control his desire to take her into his arms, but he knew that he had to, no matter what it took. Nothing could ever be between them. Even if there ever could, would it work out? There was no way a former jewel thief and a setillionare’s army daughter would ever form the perfect relationship...WOULD they?
Meanwhile at the Raptor, Dragaunus was having another one of histrionics, for failure of not being able to conquer the universe in 3 years. Wraith, Seige, and the Chameleon were hiding as far back as they could. The three lizard stooges had been terrified of Dragaunus before, but never as much as they were right now. He terrified them half to death, with his complaints about not living up to his name of a Saurian Warlord, one of the most ruthless conquerers in the entire universe.
“Blast those ducks! If only that holigram machiene had worked on them, the universe would be MINE by now...”
“Then I guess that this would be a bad time to bring this up then...” Chameleon started to mumble to himself. Dragaunus couldn’t help but overhear, so he turned his attention to the 3 lizard stooges.
“What is it, Chameleon?”
“Well...::gulps:: It turns out that the ducks have a...new...team member.”
“That traitor, Lord Dragaunus!” Seige answered. “That duck-girl named Felisha DeMalard a.k.a. Calandra Drakeler. She pretended to be a memeber of your army for the resistance on Puckworld years ago.”
“That renegade Lutenit Calandra Drakeler is ALIVE?! And here on EARTH?! Grrrr....well, it should not matter MUCH...”
“What do you mean, Lord Dragaunus?” Wraith asked.
“Well...remember earlier we spotted an uncharted island with an abundant supply of Balirium Crystals? Forget about the ducks and just steal all of those crystals from that island and we can refuel the Raptor’s engines!”
“But Lord Draguanus,” Wraith started to explain. “It’ll take a WHOLE DAY to mine the crystals out of the volcano. If we go too fast, it may risk setting off the volcano, covering the whole island with its lava, among us along with it.”
“I don’t care if it takes forever...just DO SO! The sooner we get those Balirium Crystals, the sooner the Earth will belong to me!”
At that very moment, in the Anaheim Pond, Mallory showed Cal her bunk. Every square inch of it amazed her eyes. Even though born in a world of glittering jewels and servants, she managed to look as though she had never seen such beauty before.
“Mallory...this’ even BETTER than the dorms in the military. You actually BREATHE the air, and not worry about whether or not the beds will break apart.”
“And the beds’re more comfortable than back in the military on Puckworld.”
Suddenly there was a knock on the door. When Mallory answered, a cinnamon-brown haired girl carrying a basket of clothes in several colors slowley brought the basket down. She appeared to have been huffing and puffing very heavily.
“Thanks, Jessie. Where WOULD we be without ya?”
“Hold it, Mall. Are you telling me that you make a little girl do all of your clothes washing?”
“Uhhh...no. We all take turn’s doing the laundry, and today is Jessica’s turn.”
“Acutally, it’s suppose to be Nosedive’s, but I hafta do it now since Tanya caught him using Mal’s bra as a slingshot for water balloons.”
Calandra tried to stop herself, but she couldn’t help but laugh. How else would a teenage boy would act! She would know, being the youngest of 10 siblings, the rest of her siblings being boys. Mallory scowled at Jessie for saying that.
“You promised you wouldn’t tell anyone!”
“Yeah well...you promised to teach me how to play hockey, but you never did. Uhh...Calandra, was it? I have a question for you..”
“Sure, but how do you know my name?”
“Over-heard when you came her in the first place. I wanted to know something. You had the perfect life on Puckworld. Mansion, wealth, butlers and maids to wait on you hand and foot. Everything most people can only DREAM of. Why’d you give it all up?”
“Well, child, I couldn’t stand my life at Drakeler Manor, my home. I had no freedom to make my own choices and do what I wanted to do. I wanted to live a life of my own. This may sound a trifle bit crazy, but, I’m not living life unless I’m doing up against death. One of the reason’s why I pretended to commit suicide and assumed a new name.”
“Duke told me that you framed him for murder,” Jessie pointed out.
“Well...Duke’s a bloody liar, child. You shouldn’t believe everything that scoundrel says. Half of the things he tells people are lies. Besides, ONE scoundrel trying to abduct me is enough in my life, I don’t need L’Orange to make it worse.”
“Who’s the other scoundrel, Callie?”
“Hold that thought, Mal...”
Calandra walked to the door and opened it. Immeditely, a duck with gray feathers fell flat on his chipped beak. When he looked up, 3 faces, 1 of them being human, looked down on him suspiciously.
“Duke? What’re you doing here?!” Mallory demanded to know.
“Ehhh...just making sure out young sassy ‘guest’ is comfortable in her new...how should I put this...enviorment?”
“Strange...coming from a creep like you, L’Orange. Don’t you have AT LEAST a SHRED of respect for privacy?”
“Don’t expect me to answer that, Drakeler. We BOTH know the answer to THAT. Jess! What’re you doing around her?”
“I...came by to drop off laundry, Duke.”
“Well...get back 2 work, young lady. You shouldn’t be hanging around this vixen. She’ll put bad thoughts into your head.”
“Heh...funny. Uncle Phil said the very same thing about you teaching me how to pick pockets.”
Duke glared at Jessie, giving her the look that told her if she made another outburst like that, the consequences would be...unthinkable. Getting the hint that he wasn’t in a mood to argue, Jessie grabbed the laundry basket and immeditely left Mall’s bunk. Calandra immedietly shot Duke a dirty look, and yet...something in her bare heart was excited and thrilled to see him. Duke L’Orange WAS handsome....in a rugged way. All she would have to do was LOOK at him, and her heart would start to beat as though she ran a race around the world in less than a minute. Her seat of passion beated so fast, she didn’t know if she would have a heart attack or not. In her mind, she knew that there could never be anything between a former jewel thief and a setillionare’s horse-back riding sassy scion. But her heart, her own heart, begged and longed for Duke to take her into his arms and caress her and run his fingers through her raven black hair, savoring its velvety feel. Her train of romatic thoughts ended when a touch on the shoulder by Mallory was to be felt.
“I saw that look, Callie. Don’t tell me you’ve fallen in love with Duke, have you?”
“N--no, Mal! You can HAVE him for all I care! Duke’s a blackguard anyway. Why would I be interested in a man such as him?”
“Okay, you win. I’m no expert on romance. But think about what I said, okay? I know a part of you wants to give into him and have him hold you in your arms and all...”
Calandra was just about ready to HIT Mallory for making that remark, but she realized that she was right. She couldn’t help BUT feel affection for the past jewel swindler. Every part of her body ached for Duke to touch her...to hold her...to kiss her...and more. Callie didn’t believe that she could hold it in anymore, so she decided to sleep on the thought for the night and see if she could come up with a resolution in the morning. Easily setting her head onto the pillow of Mall’s couch, Cal easily closed her glittery and sparkling violet eyes. Erraticing off into a deep sleep, a retrospection floated into Cal’s head. A memory, from long ago, which was the turning point of her life.
She was at the age of 17, in a white long-sleeved white turtleneck with a blue velvety fancy horse-riding coat over it, with brown jophers and black boots that almost went to her knees to match it. Her raven black hair was all tied inside a low pony tail that started at her neck, with an elegant violet silk bow to hold it in place. Two bangs on the sides of her head went to her shoulders. Just as she left the fancy dining room, with it’s elegant diamond chandelier, silk table cloth, fancy china dishes and silverwear made of actual silver, and fancy laced napkins all lined about by the maids that served her parents for their evening dinner, she was grabbed at the wrist by a certain male duck. It wasn’t her father, any of her 9 older brothers, or the butlers that worked for her family. It was a male duck, with dark brown feathers and chest length light brown hair, tied in a low pony tail.
He was at the age of 24, Calandra knew. He was in very elegant clothing, with his black dining jacket, black tie, and black pants. She also knew that he was a direct desendant of a duke in the old days of Puckworld, now the son of another wealthy lord, who was the mayor of the very city they lived in, and the nephew of a military general. Even though he was VERY handsome, Callie rejected him, despised the ground he walked on. Even though the male duck knew that, he would stop at nothing to take her as his own.
“Greetings, Miss Drakeler. It is nice to see your beautiful face again.”
“I am sorry that I can’t say the same for you, Mr. Quackson. Now, if you kindly step aisde and let me pass, I’d like to do some horse-back riding before I have to change into my evening gown for dinner tonight.”
As she was about to walk out the door into the snowy fields to do horse-back riding, the man pushed her against the side of the wall and pinned her there, unable to move her shoulders. She then cursed under her breath for not preparing for such a force. He then calmly took his hands off her shoulders and took an alcohol bottle and poured some into a fancy champange glass.
“Kirtland Quackson, you shouldn’t be drinking any of my father’s expensive champange unless he approves of it.”
“Why bother asking, Calandra? After all, when I move in, I will be part of the family, and some of your precious belonings shall be partially mine, such as this champange that I am about to drink.”
“What the bloody hell do you mean by that? Who says that you’re going to be moving into my family’s mansion?”
“Why not ask my father, and yours? Very soon, ma petite, you and I shall be Mr. and Mrs. Kirtland Quackson.”
“Are you saying...that my father....and yours...want us both...to MARRY?!”
“Yes, exactly, child. You and I shall be wed in a matter of 5 months.”
“But I don’t love you! You can burn in the center of Puckworld for all I care! I want nothing to do with you! You just want to inherit part of my father’s fourtune. I share no love for you. I’d sooner beome Duke L’Orange’s lover before I become your wife! ”
“Ahhh...you are a wild one, my woman with hair of death,” Kirt replied, staring deep into her hypnotizing violet eyes. “I’d love to be the man to tame you.”
“You’d play hell trying, Mr. Quackson. I can promise you that. I shall only marry for love, and not because our parents had made an arrangement for it. And I hate you filthy guts, you bastard! God damn you to hell, Kirtland Quackson!”
“I see that Mrs. St. Quacklanson’s Finishing School had no effect on you, Calandra. Oh, your father may notice you as his little princess whenever you control your temper, but in reality, you’re a bloodthirsty one, you are. You SHALL be mine, THAT I DO promise you. No matter how much you refuse and beg, we WILL be married, and I shall not only be your husband, but you MASTER as well. So get rid of that firey spirit of yours, sweetie pie. It won’t do you any good when we’re wedded.”
“I hate you!”
Kirtland snapped his fingers.
“That’s what I care whether or not you hate me. You WILL be my wife, no matter WHAT you tell me. But since you refuse, then there is but only one way I can convince you to be my woman.”
“Do you? And what way would THAT be, Mr. Featherson?”
And evil smile came onto Kirt’s face as he stared into her violet eyes with his cold black ones, telling her what was in his evil and lust-filled mind. As soon as it became clear what he was up to, Calandra immeditely tried to run from Kirt, but it was no use, for he was stronger than her and his taller legs gave him an advantage. He immeditely crushed his beak against hers. Calandra knew then and there that she TRULEY dispised him. The very kiss he gave her was nothing compared to Duke’s. Duke’s kisses made her feel bold and brave, as if she could charge into a battle and become the victor without shedding a single drop of blood. Kirtland, well...he made her feel ashamed and dirty, as though she was a whore of some sort. Then, she rememberd that no one knew that she took martial arts, and was now a black-red stripe belt in it. So while Kirtland was too distracted from pleasing himself, she immeditely brought her knee up into his groin. He then clutched himself in pain and agony, and coldly stared in Callie’s eyes once more. Her eyes were starting to brim with tears of pain and misery from almost being robbed of her virginity.
“You...griffin. I don’t care if I AM suppose to marry and worship you...I’d rather pass away a spinster! Die and go to hell, you bloody bastard! I NEVER want to see you again for as long as I live and breathe!”
She then barged out the door and ran straight to her father’s horse stable, sobbing uncontrolably, crying beause of nearly being violated as a female, and for marriage to a man she barley knew...much less loved. Spirit, her faithful horse, that was the same color of hair as her’s, nudged her with his long snout. When she looked up at him, she felt a bit calmer and better. She knew Spirit would remain loyal to her to the bitter end. She had owned the horse when it was a pony, when Callie was about 6 years old. Since then, they’ve become the best of friends. Spirit earned the name when it jumped out the barn door when it first learned to walk, and the fact that it too was born with the same firey soul as Calandra. She immeditely went to Spirit and took out an apple from one of the feeding bags and gave it to him. Eagerly he munched on it and licked the remaining taste off the palm of her gloved hand. Calandra lightly giggled, but her heart set into dispair again. She then lightly rested her head onto Spirit and stroked his dark black mane.
“Spirit, what am I to do? I can’t seem to get out of this arranged marriage. I HATE Kirtland Quackson. He’s a son of a whore, and I almost lost my virginity to him. I’d sooner become Duke L’Orange’s lover than that bastard’s wife. Moi detester demonst, suppose que SEE une seul(1)! What can I do though? He’ll never listen to me, and I KNOW father won’t. Once he makes a decision, it’s to be stuck with, no matter what. Even a JACKHAMMER wouldn’t work on daddy’s brain. I’ll have to run away....make a new life of my own, just like I always wanted.”
Spirit immeditely nudged her shoulder. When Callie first got Spirit, it was as if she could speak horse-language at the first try. She immedietly mounted him and hugged his neck, smiling warmly into his big, black, and beady eyes.
“Don’t worry, Spirit. It won’t be tonight. I mean...after all, the wedding won’t be for another 5 months, 2 weeks after my 18th birthday. Moi contume lassier vous jusque les soir auparavant les mariage, a moi camarade(2),” she answered as she placed her elegent riding helmet over her head.
With that, she snapped at the reins and Spirit and Calandra were off onto the snow-covered beach behind Drakeler Manor, riding into the sunset of her home. In there, she felt peace which nothing, not even the arranged marriage itself, would disturb her happiness. In horse-back riding, she felt as though she was part of the wind, and riding Spirit, her loyal companion, was the same as riding the wind itself. Her raven black hair, tied in its low length pony-tail with the violet bow made of the purest and softest silk to match her violet eyes and hair, blew in the cold wind as she and Spirit jumped over the rocks on the beach No matter how horrible she felt, riding always calmed Calandra’s nerves. Callie rode Spirit onto the rocky cliff that faced the ocean and gazed into the sun, slowley falling behind the ocean. The colors of pink, red, orange, and yellow mixed with the color of the sapphire blue of the ocean, creating a mysterious yet heavenly and serenic color. It’s beauty amazed her every time she would ride Spirit into the night, and she never got tired of gazing at the heavenly nightfall. She would have to remember this as much as she could, for upon leaving Drakeler Manor in less than 5 months before the wedding, she would want to spend as much time as she could with Spirit as she could. Her sparkling violet eyes followed the sun as it sank below the ocean, turning the sky from it’s brilliant sunset color into a starry black that matched Calandra’s raven black hair and Spirit’s ebony black fur...how she would miss these sunsets when she would make a life of her own.
As Calandra tossed and turned in her bed, she felt hands lightly shaking her awake. When her eyes opened, she realized that she WASN’T in Drakeler Manor anymore, or in her elegant room, and the person who woke her up WASN’T her mother, Juletta Drakeler. She was in the dorm room of the Anaheim Pond in Anaheim, California. And the person who awoke her was her best friend, Mallory McMallard.
“Yo, Cal. ‘Bout time you woke up. I’ve been struggling for nearly half an hour. It’s almost 11 a.m!”
“Eleven...a.m? I slept THAT long?”
“Apparently, so. But I guessed you needed it, thanx to that bank robbery you stopped yesterday. C’mon, in an hour Phil’ll be testing you for the hockey team.”
“Phil? Who the heck is Phil, Mall?”
“Our sports manager,” Mallory answered with a grudge in her voice. “And a lousy one at that. There’s only 3 things he care’s about.: His niece Jessica, money, and publicity, in that order.”
“Heh...at least that little brown haired girl is the first thing in his mind.”
“Yeah well...get changed and be at the hockey rink in 1,200 hours.”
“Yes, Lutenit-Commander McMallard, ma’am!”
“Just ‘Mallory’ will do fine, Calandra. We’re not back at Puckworld...at least, not yet.”
“Okay, Mall. I should be ready in LESS than 1,200 hours, anyway.”
Glad to be hearing such a thing, Mall quickly left her dorm room and went to the ice rink. Within an hour, Calandra showed up, wearing her knee pads over a pair of jeans and a long-sleeved white shirt with elbow pads on as well. Her raven black hair was still braided, but it was hidden under a hockey helmet.
“Well...I’m ready to try out. I should be of some good...at least, I hope.”
“I am SERIOUSLY gonna enjoy bashing your brains out, Drakeler,” Duke said with a sly grin on his beak.
“I’d like to see you even TRY, L’Orange,” Calandra countered.
“Okay, that’s enough,” Wildwing butted in. “There’s no point in you two arguing. What happened to before is in the past now, so forget about it and call a truce.”
“I’d rather poision myself to death than shake hands with HER.”
“God’s bloody eyeballs, L’Orange! When will you start act mature?”
Just at that very moment, a chubby man in a blue buisness outfit, pink tie, and brown hair in a low pony-tail came into the hockey rink, looking like he had just had a call from the IRS and he was getting part of his property taken away.
“Okay, where’s the chick that I gotta interview to be part of the team?”
“ExCUSE me! Did he just call me a ‘chick’?!” Calandra asked in a irritated tone of voice.
“So SHE’S the hotty that I gotta interview for the Mighy Ducks, huh?”
“And I DON’T like being called ‘hotty’ EITHER!”
Realizing that one more sexual harrasement name would cause Phil to go flying in the wall, Mall quickly ran in front of Phil and started to speak with him.
“Phil...I wouldn’t reccomend calling Calandra ANY of those names...she has a nastier temper than me, and she’ll easily beat up anyone that calls her by those names. So please, if you want to remain alive, DON’T call her ANY of those names.”
“So...I can’t call her ‘sweetheart’ or ‘angel’.”
“Well...THOSE names don’t offend her for some reason. Just don’t call her babe, baby, doll, chick, sugar, or any names that involve one of those. Do so, you’ll remain alive. Don’t and, well........don’t say I didn’t warn you.”
“Okay..” Phil took a note of that. He would have to, for his life depended on it. He then calmly walked over to Calandra and peacefully held out his hand.
“Ehh...Phil Polmfeather, manager of Mighty Ducks, #1 hockey team in this entire world.”
“So I heard. Lt. Calandra Drakeler, Puckworld Special Forces. I also play hockey on the side-lines. I can help contribute victory to the team.”
“We don’t REALLY need her, Phil. We can get along FINE WITHOUT Drakeler,” Duke grumbled.
“You wanna PROVE that, L’Orange? I can kick ya around the block in hockey!”
“I’d love to see you TRY, Drakeler.”
“You want proof? I’ll GIVE you proof. One-on-one, you and me, L’Orange!”
“You’re on! Anything to get even with ya 9 years ago!”
“Ehhh...could someone clue me in on what’s going on here?” Phil asked.
When Calandra explained the story as best she could, a sly smile came onto Phil’s face.
“Hmm...maybe I can use this to MY advantage. Like say...get a spot on the Jerry Springer show...”
“Phil, don’t even TRY. We won’t stand to be humiliated anymore. We put up with enough publicity stunts for the past 3 years,” Wildwing replied, angrily.
“Alright, alright...no more stunts...for now. Just get your little competition over with.”
Duke immedietly jumped onto the ice and landed right in front of Calandra. In his eyes, she saw anger and a vow for revenge needed to be complete. But what she DIDN’T know was that he felt a powerful passionate love and ardent desire for her. Her body, her lips...Callie and Callie alone was the only one he could ever love. Unable to bring himself to say those words, he took out a puck from his pocket and put it onto the bare ice.
“I was BORN ready, L’Orange.”
Liking her sense of humor and vixen attitude, he stared deep into her violet eyes, waiting for the right moment to attack and grab the puck. Aware of his little game, Calandra immeditely stared back in his remaining jade eye. When he blinked, she reached for the puck with her hockey stick and raced towards the goal. Duke saw that she had the upper hand and immedietly rushed after her. However, he was too late, for Callie shot the puck into the net, making a score against Duke. He was mortified beyond belief. AGAIN Calandra Drakeler humiliated him. Anger boiling hin his blood, he charged at her and knocked her so hard, she fell out of the rink and onto the stadium floor, flat on her chest. A small droplet of blood started to come out of the left side of her beak. But instead of crying out in pain or rushing out to attack Duke, she just pretended as though nothing happened. Wildwing and the others couldn’t have been fooled by her brave attitude, though.
“Duke! What the heck’s gotton into you?!” Mallory asked in total shock.
“I’ve been waiting YEARS to get even with Drakeler, Mal,” Duke answered with hate in his voice.
“Those two DEFINETLY need to go onto the Jerry Springer show,” Phil suddenly remarked.
“No, Phil,” Wildwing countered, still sounding like his serious self. “One, they’d only beat each other up even more. I saw what that talkshow’s like. And two, you made a promise on no more publicity stunts for the rest of the month AT LEAST.”
“Alright,Wing. You win...for now.”
With that remark, Phil returned to his office. Calandra usually tried to keep her temper in check, but after the way Duke reacted to her, it would be one of the gretest challenges in her life. Her mind told her to attack him, but her heart yearned for him instead. No matter how hard she tried to erase the feeling from her head, it became more obvious that she was in love with Duke L’Orange. But she KNEW she couldn’t get involved with him. He would only hurt her even more than Kirtland Quackson tried to do so many painful years ago. Instead, she took off her helmet, her braided hair falling down like water down a cataract. A thought in her mind told her to throw it at Duke, to crack his skull open, have his blood pour all over the ice, the need of revenge to be completed. But before she could, the alarm on Drake 1 sounded. Knowing that there was danger, the ducks, Calandra included, immeditely morphed into their battle gear and ran to the computer room. Tanya quickly analyzed the situation and was shocked beyond belief.
“Well? What is it, Tanya?” Wildwing asked.
“Drake 1 says that there’s teleportation energy coming from an island, but its name I have no idea what it is. It says that they’re mining there for a supply of...BALIRIUM CRYSTALS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
“WHAT?!” Wildwing asked in total shock. “But that’s impossible. Balirium Crystals don’t grow on Earth!”
“I know that...but that’s what Drake 1 says, Wildwing.”
“Well...we mighty as well board the Areowing and check this out. EVEN if it’s a trap, we need to investigate.”
“Does SHE hafta go?” Duke asked with irritation in his tone as he pointed to Callie. “I’m still sick from the fact that she still BREATHES.”
“L’Orange, give it up. I don’t want go with you either, but we don’t have a choice. So you might as well make the most of it.”
Duke pretended to hate her filthy guts, but his heart wanted to take Calandra into his arms and carress the silky softeness of her body and raven black hair. He knew that he wouldn’t be able to resist his desire much longer, but he knew that he had to, for his sake, and possibly, her’s. To keep the others from suspecting his real feelings towards her, Duke ran to the Aerowing, Calandra far behind him. She kept trying to remind herself about the crimes he committed before, but it was worthless to remind herself, for no matter how hard she tried, Calandra Drakeler knew that she was in love with Duke L’Orange. On the ride to the Aerowing, Callie always kept her head on the bare floor, to avoid eye-to-eye contact with Duke, so he would’t suspect her real feelings towards him: pure and passionate love, instead of pure bitter and fierce hatred. Upon arriving on the uncharted island, Wildwing scanned the area with his magical mask, only to be confused.
“The mask can’t find the right route. We’ll hafta split up and search the place. Dive, Mal..you’re with me. Tanya, you go with Grin. Duke...you’re with Callie.
“WHAT?! Are you NUTS, Wildwing?! Me...team up with HER?!
“You 2 hafta learn to get along with each other.”
“::sighs:: We might as well get going, L’Orange. Like I said earlier, we don’t have a choice.”
Calandra then grabbed Duke’s wrist and dragged him in the direction Wildwing assigned them. everyone else went in their own directions. Duke acted as though he wanted to kill her right then and there, but his heart was excited and thrilled to be near her. In a way, being near the sassy, seductive Russain lutenit made him feel a little... aroused. After a long while of walking, the back of the volcano where Drake 1 detected the strange readings from was in sight.
“That’s the volcano, alright.”
“Duh, Drakeler. Drake1 is NEVER wrong.”
“God’s bloody eyeballs, L’Orange! Argue with me ANOTHER time. I’m gonna make us an enterance and stop those lousy excuses for lizards!”
She then took out one of her laser cross-bows and aimed it at the center of the volcano. But before she could shoot, Duke immedietly grabbed at her cross-bow and gave her a look that said she should think things out before the executes them.
“Blast us an enterance and you may risk setting the volcano off.”
“Then how the bloody hell are we suppose to enter the volcano, you moronic bastard?!”
“First of all...don’t EVER call me THAT again. Second of all, I’ll just ignite my saber and CUT us an enterance.”
“What if you open another hole for lava to emit out of, and it comes oozing on us?”
“God, Drakeler. You just LOVE to irritate me, don’t ya?”
“No, I’m just pointing out an obvious fact.”
“::sighs:: Okay..we can’t blast our way in because we might risk setting off the volcano. And we can’t cut our way in since if we do, lava might come out and cover the entire island, with us and the others along with it. So we’re gonna hafta find ANOTHER way in.”
“Hey...I think I see one,” Callie said as she pointed to a hole near the volcano.
“Looks kinda small...”
“Do we have a choice? Let’s get down there and stop those creatures!”
She then started to slowley crawl down the chute, Duke still looking down the hole. Realizing that he wasn’t following her, she immeditely peeked her head back up and saw him still standing there.
“Well, L’Orange? You coming, or do I hafta do this on my own?”
“It ain’t my style, Drakeler. I don’t wanna get my clean outfit and hair dirty.”
“Usually it’s a GIRL’S job to worry about her looks. L’Orange, there’s no other way in. Besides, it’s fun. Either you crawl in now, or I’ll drag your carcass in here.”
Duke appeared angered in Callie’s remark, but on the inside, he was aroused and attracted to her sassy mouth and attitude. Cal stared at him blankly, until he finally gave in.
“Okay...you win. I coming down with ya, Drakeler.”
“‘Bout time you made up your mind, L’Orange, before I had to crawl out and push you in.”
“Thank you, I KNOW I am,” Cal answered back sarcastically.
Duke calmly crawled down the hole with Calandra, making sure not to get too close to her. But every few seconds, his foot went on top of Callie’s head, pushing dirt fragments on her raven black hair. Slowley they crawled down the chute until they were inside the volcano. Quickly, Calandra grabbed Duke’s wrist and dragged him behind a rock. Together they looked at the Balirium Crystal mining operation. Cal quickly grabbed at Duke’s collart and jerked him down behind a nearby enormous boulder that provided enough cover to shield them from the eyes of the three Saurian servents of Dragaunus and the hunter drones Callie quickly faced into Duke’s jade brown eye with her glittering violet ones. Part of her told her to tell him right then and there that she loved him with all of her heart and soul...but common sense and her evolved brain told her that he wouldn’t have believed the very same thing, and that it wasn’t the appropriate time to tell him her feelings. Instead, she started to speak with her Russian accent.
“Well, L’Orange? You have any plans on how to stop the mining operation?”
“Simple. We attack them, full force.”
“General, that’s a BRILLIANT strategy,” Callie said sarcastically. God’s bloody eyeballs, my 4th older brother Thomas could come up with a better idea than THAT, and he’s probably still at home, withering away in my father’s vast fourtune.
“You think YOU can come up with a better plan that that, Drakeler?!”
“Yes, I believe I can, L’Orange. I’m 2nd lutenit of the military on Puckworld, am I not?”
“Grrr.....I suppose you DO have a point for once. So what do we do?”
“Well...I distract them while you destroy the crystal mining operation.”
“That’s no better than the plan I came up with, Drakeler.”
“I’m giving you a direct order, L’Orange. We may not be on Puckworld at the moment, but I’m still the 2nd lutenit of the military. Now follow my commands.”
God, Drakeler....I think that military position of yours’ going to yer head for once. Still...I gotta admire your vixen-like attitude...
“Well...are you going to or not?”
“I’m waiting for you to distract the creeps so I can do my part of the job, dammit Drakeler.”
“Get a grip, L’Orange. When I get their attention, that’s the signal for you to do your part.” With that, Calandra immedietly rose. She placed her two of her gloved fingers inside her mouth and used them to create a whistling sound. That immeditely got the Saurians’ attention. They turned around and noticed Calandra. She then smirked when she saw the shock on Siege’s, Wraith’s, and Chameleon’s faces.
“Hey, morons! Looking for someone?!”
“Felisha DeMalard!” Seige shouted in shock.
“Correction, scale-tail: Calandra Drakeler. You’re gonna pay for what you did to my home and enslaving my people, you freaks!”
“We’ll just see about THAT, my dear,” Wraith said as he prepared a fire ball in his very hands. “YOU shall pay for betraying Lord Dragaunus and aiding the Resistance in the process.”
In that, the fire ball was thrown. Callie immeditely dodged and took out a weapon no one knew she had...which was her bullwhip. A stem-like bullwhip almost as long as Nosedive. Cracking it behind her, she flung it at her enemies. While the Saurain stooges were distracted, Duke used that as his opportunity to get to the crystal supply. And what a sight it was! So many balirium crystals his one eye cold see. Even if he had his right eye back in working condition, it would be too many for him to absorb.
“Man...it’ll take forever to destroy them all with my saber. I guess I’ll gust hafta use some fire-power instead.”
With that, Duke took out a puck blaster and shot at all the crystals around him. Within a matter of seconds, all were gone. The Saurians’ Balirium Crystal supply had now been destroyed. All of their hard work.........down the drain. But it was for a good cause. With the Balirium Crystal quantity now gone, there would be no way that Dragaunus could repower the Raptor and conquer all of Earth. The deed now done, Duke felt as though he needn’t be inside the volcano anymore. Then suddenly, he remembered her. Calandra...the Russian raven-black haired girl. She was still back fighting Dragaunus’ forces! His brain told him to let her die, just like she deserved for what she did to him so long ago. Yet his bare heart said that he couldn’t allow the woman he had loved for nearly 11 years die like this. Besides...if she died, Wildwing and the others would all blame him, especially Mallory. Mallory McMallard and Calandra Drakeler were best friends for about nearly 6 years now, and to let Callie die would be the same thing as letting down a comrad. He knew what he had to do. He had to save her life, even though she WAS his old adversary so long ago. Setting aside his Puck blaster, Duke immeditely ran from the crystal room of the volcano, to help a former foe.
At that very moment, Calandra was starting to loose some of her military strength. Both of her cross-bows were starting to run out of arrows, and it would take 15 more minutes for them both to re-charge. Her arms were badly scared, and several bullets of sweat were dripping down her face. Her breathing was very heavy, and the braid in her raven black hair was slowley but surley starting to unravel. It had been years since she had a good fight, and a part of her was excited to be going up against the Saurians again.
“Hmmmm...it seems as though we’ve worn the traitor down enough,” Wraith noted as he created another fire-ball. “I say it is time to go in for the kill.”
“I’m gonna LOVE ripping the renegade to shreds with my own bare hands,” Seige smirked as he pounded his fists together.
“It’s CLOBBERIN’ time!” Chameleon shouted after he morphed into the Thing from the Fantastic Four. He then morphed back into his original shape.
Man...I don’t know if I can hold out much longer, Calandra thought to herself as she put up a fighting stance. Still...for some reason, I seem to be...ENJOYING this little battle we’re having. Kinda like my military training...except this time it’s for real, and it’s a lot more fun....
As Wraith threw the fireball at Callie, a golden-yellow sword blocked the blow, sending it hurling into a few hunter drones, smashing them to bits. Cal stared awkwardly at Duke as he turned his face to her.
“L’Orange...why’d you save my life? Don’t tell me it was because you WANTED to!” I almost wish it WAS....
“No way, Drakeler. If you die, the others, INCLUDING Mallory, are gonna blame ME when they find your sorry carcass in a pool of molten lava.”
“Fine. Not like I CARE or anything.”
“How touching,” Siege murmered sarcastically. “Together again...for the final time!”
With that, the remaining hunter drones attacked at Calandra and Duke at full force. Luckily, Callie still had some strength left in her athletic body to put up a good decent fight. Cracking her braided bullwhip, she wrapped one of the hunter drone’s arms with it while Duke sliced the metal arm in half, following the rest of her body. He then stared at her, and for once, smiled at her.
“Drakeler...you and I seem to make quite a good team.”
“Hey..you’re not so bad yourself, L’Orange.......for an old timer.”
“Old timer? Me?”
“Well...you’re almost 30. That’s pretty old for me.”
By then, all of the Hunter Drones had been destroyed. Wraith, Seige, and Chameleon had frightened looks upon their faces. The Balirium Crystal stock was all gone, and they were up against two members of the resistance.
“It’s all over, you 3 stooges,” Duke voiced.
“Looks like they got us. We don’t have the crystals, and we’re all out of defenses,” Seige noted.
“I feared this would come to a grave ending,” Wraith said.
“So looks like we gotta run away again. But before we do...here’s a little ‘present’ for ya, ya traitor, Drakeler!”
Before the lizards made their grand escape, Chameleon had blasted a hole under Calandra. Before the ground under her caved in, she yanked out a knife and stuck into the ground to keep her from falling into the hot lava. Duke noticed the danger and immeditely rushed to her side.
“Cal! Quick; grab my hand!”
“Why should I bother, L’Orange?! You’ll only throw me into the hot molten lava!”
“For once in your life be sensible, Drakeler. I’m trying to SAVE you life. NOT KILL you!”
Cal wasn’t sure whether or not she should accept Duke’s offer or not. Before she could make her decision, the ground under her knife gave in, and she started to fall into the pool of molten hot lava. Without thinking twice, Duke grabbed her gloved wrist. Was he mad? He had just aided the enemy; HIS enemy! But he knew then and there that he truley DID love her. Did Calandra know the same thing?
“Y---y----yeah, I guess so...”
Relieved by her answer, Duke easily pulled her up. However in the process, Cal tripped over a rock on her left boot. She instantly fell into Duke’s arms. When she looked up at him, their beaks were less than 2 inches away from each others, if not, more. Both looked at each other in shock. It had been years since they were so close to each other. Each one of them were in each other’s arms. From that point on, there was no turning back. Duke lightly touched Callie’s cheek, and in the process, Callie’s hands were on Duke’s, savoring the warmth of his loving touch. Would he? Would he finally tell her that he had loved her for so long? The question deeply burned inside Duke’s heart, as he slowley leaned closer to her face. Hungrily and passionately he savoured the flavor inside her beak as though it had the taste of ambrosia, nectar to the gods. Willingly, Calandra allowed Duke’s beak to touch hers over and over again. Oh, how long she had waited for him to do this to her! She had no idea that his touch could be so...wondrous and heavenly. On the inside of her atheltic yet slim body, she wanted to feel more of his touch and passionate embrace...his kiss. Outside, she tried to remain calm and control her wild fantasies.
“Duke, you’re trembling.” It suprised her to see the lower part of his beak quiver the smallest speck as he neared her to kiss her once more. Her she was, trapped in his embodiment, fighting to restrain herself, while he himself revealed uneasiness.
“You’re so ravishing, Calandra. It’s so...overpowering.”
Oh, how painful it was to have waited so long to be hearing that from his lips. Escaping her world of passion and love and returning to reality, Callie immeditely broke away from Duke’s passionate embrace.
“Sweetheart? What’s wrong?”
“Please, Duke..don’t call me that. Forget this ever happened. There can’t be anything between us. Don’t think it’s because of the fact that you’re of lower class than me. What if it doesn’t work out? Won’t others be jealous of you and me...together?”
“I don’t CARE what the others think! So what if I’m a former jewel thief and you’re...a setillionare’s daughter? It doesn’t matter to me, Calandra. All that matters is that...you’re with me. That’s all I care about.”
Happy to realize such a thing, Callie immedietly went back into his warm embrace.
“Duke...I’ve wanted you for so long. Since the moment you and I first kissed....”
“I’ve wanted you since the moment I heard of your existance. When I first saw you, I wanted to claim you as mine, but no one believed that it could be accomplished.”
“I wonder what their expressions would be when they found out that such a thing happened? What’ll we tell the others? Won’t they be shocked?”
“I’m willing to deal with their shocked expressions, sweetheart.”
Before they could share another kiss together, rock crumbles were heard. When they turned their heads, they saw the other 5 ducks, climbing down the chute. Had they seen what just happened between Duke and Calandra? They hoped not.
“You two okay?” Wildwing asked.
“Uhhhh,” Duke started. “Yeah, we’re fine. Cal here...slipped, thanx 2 Chameleon’s blast, and I hadta pull her up with both my hands.”
“That WOULD explain why she’s next to you chest, Dukester,” Dive complimented.
After a ride back to the Pond in the Aero-wing. Call immeditely went to the shower in Mall’s dorm room. It felt good to wash out all of the volcanic ash in her hair and dirt out of her light colored brown feathers. When the shower was, done, and she had cleaned up the mess she made in the process, she changed into a pair of skin tight light blue jeans and a spaggetti strap white tank top. She let her raven black hair stay down for a while, so it would go in its wavy form again. As she left for the laundry room to wash her uniform, a hand covered her beak. Another held her by her shoulder and turned her around to his face, where Calandra saw the eyes of her lover. Quickly, Duke replaced his hand with his own mouth. He then started to lightly carress her back as she started wrap her arms around his neck, deepening his kisses even more.
“Call...there wasn’t a boyfriend you left behind when you left Drakeler Manor?”
“Well...I left behind Kirtland Quackson, my fiance.”
“Yes, but I shared no love for him. I barley KNEW him...much less LOVED him. It was a FORCED marriage. HE’S the main reason I left Drakeler Manor and joined Puckworld Special Forces. He’s a perfect son of a wretch. He was so...so...”
“Overbearing? Conceited? Snobbish? Arrogant? Insufferable?”
“All of that and MORE, love. And he probably still IS, for all I know. I couldn’t stand to be near him. He almost took my virginity away from me. I told him that...that...”
“That what, sweetheart?” Duke asked as he lighty cradled her head onto his shoulder, sifting his finers through the velvety silkiness of her raven black hair.
“I told him that I’d sooner become your lover than his wife.”
“Well...if he saw US together now, he’d be in for the suprise of his life, wouldn’t he?”
“Yes...I suppose so, love. But I guess it doesn’t matter right now. I..I...moi amer vous, Duke.”
“It’s French for ‘I love you’.”
“Since when does a Russian woman speak French?”
“I DO have a Russian accent, since my father’s Russian. But my mother, Juletta Diamondfeathers Drakeler, was French. That’s how I knew how to speak some of that language. But it does it matter right now. All that I care about is...you, being in your arms...”
“And I love you as well, Calandra Drakeler.”
Calandra then stared at him with her glittering violet eyes. She knew Duke meant it when he said that he loved her. As they kissed each other’s lips, he lowered her onto the top of the washing machiene, wanting to deepen his passion even more. Willingly, she gave into him. After 11 years of heartache and burning desire for him, believing that her dream would be impossible, it had came true. From that point on, she wouldn’t have to imagine any happy endings. She would LIVE them instead. So much for dreams!
(1) French for: I hate that man, if he IS one.
(2) French for: I won’t leave you until the night before the wedding, my friend.
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