Shifter clasped Kamara’s hands with heavy, solid rock, attached to the ceiling of the cave. The same happened to her feet. She struggled to free them, growling hostily. Kamara could feel her limbs being stretched and sore.
“Cole never had abilities like this as the master of earth!” Kamara thought, angry and confused.
A door opened from the right side of the room. It was Safrina.
“Oh great. You too, huh?” Kamara groaned.
Safrina took a deep breath.
“You’re obviously confused, Kamara,” she informed, cooly, “I understand the disbelief of the idea of being a part of something…abnormal.”
“You’re a villain! And I refuse to listen to you!”
Safrina clicked her tongue.
“Come, come now, imouto. Learn to respect your sister. Now, it’s time for your first lesson.”
Safrina calmly walked to the right side of the room, where a wooden table was standing, with maps, and tattered scrolls. She picked up one scroll in particular, that had a painting composed of colored ink, and text written on the side.
“The ‘Kurai Kodomo’: the children of the Dark One. A story that History has purposely chosen to forget” Safrina stated.
She pulled up the painting, one that was a picture of an old man, his face covered, but brightened with a yellow aura, and the other was a dark purple shape of a being with evil red eyes in the position of the sign of Yin and Yang.
“No one quite remembers how or where the Dark One was banished. What they did know, was that he was unconsciously created by the First Spinjitzu Master. The Dark One was jealous of his power and light, and wanted to rule Ninjago for himself. The battle between light and dark waged for many centuries, until the First Spinjitzu Master casted him out from Ninjago, and into another world. Everyone believed that the Dark One was defeated, and they were at peace and prospered for many years following. What they did not know, was that evil still lingered in their midst.”
Safrina pulled up another picture, one that displayed seven shadowed beings, all possessing various elemental powers in their hands.
“Before the Dark One was banished, he sent seven of his followers into hiding, all possessing negative copies of the same power the First Spinjitzu Master possessed. He told them that one day, he would call upon one of their descendents to take up the glorious burden of retaking Ninjago, and govern it until he returns.”
“Wow. Fascinating story” Kamara responded dryly, “and uh, what makes you think that I’m one of them?”
Safrina lowered the pictures, and placed them back onto the table.
“We have been watching you for a long time, imouto. We have seen how you interact with the Masters of the Light, these…Ninja. You are not like them.”
Kamara felt a shiver go down her spine.
“How long have they been watching? Since I joined the ninja? Since I was a little girl? What!?”
Safrina stepped closer to me, advancing to an uncomfortably close distance.
“You do not display traits of a master of light,” Safrina said in a low voice, “Oh, the boys display a level of immaturity yes, but you…” Safrina chuckled.
“No, imouto, your anger as not the same as theirs. Yours was darker…Vengeful…”
Kamara looked away, sensing Safrina’s breath on my face. She began to sweat, especially since the lack of oxygen coming to her hands and feet.
“Stop it” She hissed.
“You are selfish. You are greedy. You have no understanding of them because you are not them. You don’t belong with them, Kamara. You never have. You belong with us.”
“You know why you don’t belong with them Kamara? Because you try too hard to be something you’re not!”
She squeezed her eyes shut, trying to ignore Safrina’s taunts. But then, her mind began to drift to more unpleasant thoughts. More unpleasant memories.
“Kamara? Come on, Sensei says we need to brush up on our Spinjitzu.”
Kamara leaned over the rails of the ship and stared into the distance. She could hear the sound of an unsheathing sword.
“Kam? Come on.”
She didn’t turn around. She just stared at the ocean, crawling down and beyond the horizon. Her blood pressure began to rise. She wanted so bad just to fly away. She could feel her emotional walls begin to cave in.
“Can you quit it!?” she snapped, “Just leave me alone, I’ll train later.”
“But Sensei always says, ‘Never put off to tomorrow what can be done today’” Zane quoted, “We are ninja. This is a dedication we must follow through.”
“Train, train train!” She growled, “That’s what we always do! We never have enough time to do anything we want to do!”
“Kamara, that’s dumb, and you know it!” Cole scolded, “Just because you were Sensei Wu’s pupil longest, doesn’t mean you get to get out of stuff! Now come on!”
Kamara stamped her foot, and whirled around.
“You’re not the boss of me Cole! Maybe treat me with a little more respect, and maybe I will train!”
“Where did that come from!?” Cole retorted,
“Kam, what’s wrong with you?”
“Oh, you think you’re so blind!” I spat.
“Kamara! Stop it!” Jay shouted, “What is your problem!? Why do you hate us so much!? No matter what we do, you’re never satisfied! Sometimes I question why Wu chose you in the first place!”
Kamara halted. Her eyes began to moisten and she wanted to cover my eyes and sob. Then, Sensei Wu stepped out of his room.
“That’s enough!” He scolded.
Everyone froze and looked up at him.
“If you’re so against training, Kamara,” Wu said sternly, “Then maybe you can go to your room and read about it!”
Kamara retorted. She turned to her sword-brothers and lashed, “THANKS A LOT GUYS!”
“So stupid, so immature…”
She couldn’t see it, but Kamara sensed Safrina was grinning, devilishly.
“I think we’ve concluded our lesson today” she stated, “Shifter? Return Kamara to her quarters.” Shifter nodded.
He walked up to me, jumped up, and punched the rock between Kamara’s fists and the ceiling. She came barreling down, and hit the ground. She struggled to sit up. A great exhaustion began to wash over her, as she could feel overwhelming wave of emotions crashing down. Why would the ninja rescue me? Kamara never gave them a good reason to…
The vibration and sound of the incoming heavy vehicles shook the mountain a lightning blue jet, a red flaming cycle, a white cycle, and a black heavy car sped up the dirt roads. Atop of them, were the four ninja. The sun was high overhead, signifying the afternoon was becoming late.
“Are you sure Jade said this was the right mountain?” Kai asked his sword-brothers.
“I visited these caverns when I was little,” Cole replied, “This is definitely the right mountain.
Though, I never went up to the top. The caverns opened to tourists are down at the bottom.”
Kai sighed. “I hope Kam is alright” He thought aloud.
“I’m sure she’s fine and dandy,” Jay assured, “Hey, it’s when her hard-headedness will come to good use! Whatever those Kurai Kodomo want with her, she’s not going to give in that easily!”
Kai turned his eyes back to the road.
“I hope you’re right” he thought.
Suddenly, all four vehicles screeched to a halt. A black, slick car was parked in front of a traffic cone blockade. As they stopped, a young woman stepped out of the car. It was Jade. The ninja disabled their vehicles, and put the golden weapons on their backs.
“Why the blockade, Jade? We could’ve crashed into that!” Jay objected.
“Just a precaution” Jade replied, “I didn’t want anyone else to take a trek up here if there’s to be a fight.”
“I would hope not” Cole wished, “We don’t know how dangerous these Kurai Kodomo are.”
“I sense we use stealth then?” Zane inquired.
“Right you are.”
Jade reached into a small satchel she had over her shoulder, and pulled out a rectangular gray box with a green screen, a small satellite and buttons.
“Ooh! What’s that?” Jay asked, eagerly.
“It’s an LT, or Life-Tracker” Jade explained as she switched it on, “It scans through up to a mile of solid objects. It’ll help us find them quickly and effectively.”
Then, Jade pulled a gun out of a holster on her side and checked for bullets. Kai leaned over to Zane and whispered:
“Well, she’s not fooling around.” Then, Cole announced, “Well, lead the way Jade. We’ll be right behind you.”
Jade nodded, and they trekked the rest of the way on foot.
Kamara concentrated on breathing in and out. How she longed for the fresh air she remembered so fondly on the upper deck of the Destiny’s Bounty. She wished that the air in her cell wasn’t so thin! It made Kamara realize the things I was taking for granted. Fresh air…Good food…Good company. She sighed in anguish.
“I’m never gonna get out of here!” Kamara muttered, “No one is going to come for me, and I’m stuck! I wanna go home…”
Then, as Kamara was swimming in my own pool of misery, her attention turned towards a table in the back of the room, next to the door. On it, was an old, bronze key. That wasn’t there before.
Kamara stood up.
“That could be the way out!” I thought excitedly.
At first, her heart sank. “I could use my powers to try and drag it over here, but I would use a lot of oxygen to breath in!”
But then, she remembered. “Just hold your breath, dummy!”
Kamara looked at the key across the room. She stretched out my hands, and began to focus. She held her breath, and closed her eyes for a brief moment. Kamara could feel the air currents in the room move towards me, and twirl around my fingers. She opened my eyes. She changed the direction of the air, and began attempting to push the key off the table. As she concentrated, the key moved an inch. Kamara began to get excited.
“That’s it! That’s it! Thirty-nine more feet to go!”
The key continued to move, closer, and closer towards the end of the table. Kamara could feel her lungs begin to cave in. It was getting more difficult to hold her breath for more than a few seconds.
“What was my record again?” She asked herself, “Oh right: Thirty seconds. What was Zane’s? Ten minutes. Great.”
Finally, the key teetered so close to the end of the table, that it fell and clinked on the floor. Kamara let out her breath and stayed as silently as she could. Kamara listened intently for any signs of anyone approaching the door. Two minutes went past. Nothing. She turned back to the key, and held her breath again. Once again, she manipulated the air currents in the room, and pulled the key forward.
“Come on! I can do this! So close!” Kamara encouraged herself.
The key skidded across the floor. She cringed at the sound of the scraping metal against the stone floor. Until finally, the key was at enough distance, that she could reach it and grab it.
She let out her breath again.
“Yes!” she wanted to shout.
But the effect of the thin air becoming even more thinner prohibited me to. Kamara grabbed the key and unlocked the cell door. She crept forward and used the key on the door. It clicked and unlocked. The door creaked, and she immediately halted. She listened closely for any signs of alert from my captors. When Kamara heard nothing, she squeezed between the crack of the door and the wall, and into the carved hallway. She took a deep breath, experiencing an abundance of oxygen compared to her cell. She was beginning to feel a slight warmth of hope.
“I can get out! I can escape! I can get away from these crazy people!”
She tiptoed at a more quicker pace. Kamara was about to summon her windblade, in anticipation of fighting my way out.
Just then, someone jumped in front of her out of nowhere. A giant ice ball was in their hand, and they threw it! It hit Kamara square in the face, like rock hard, clay brick. Her head throbbed with pain, and the world began to darken around me and she fell to the ground. Kamara could hear people approach me and speak over me:
“Who let her escape!?” It was Safrina.
“It was a test,” Shifter’s voice spoke calmly, “To see if she would still escape despite our efforts.”
“Well, it clearly didn’t work!” Safrina snapped. She growled, irritably. “If Nanbā Ichi were here, the conversion process would go much quicker!”
“Well, he isn’t, and until we find him, this will have to do.”
“Safrina, I saw vehicles approaching from the west side of the mountain,” informed an unfamiliar, feminine voice, “They appear to be the ninja.”
There was a moment of silence, but Kamara, even in her dazed state, could still sense Safrina’s fuming. Then, Safrina ordered, “Be sure to give them a…chilling welcome.”
“The ninja? Here? They…came for me?”