The Skeleton King Part One
written by Tabby

"What're we looking for again, anyway?" Tabby asked as she, Sugarberry, Friendly, and Clever Clover tramped through the Dark Forest.

"Princess Royal Blue's magic wand," Sugarberry reminded her. "She lost it while going through here."

"Why was she going through the Dark Forest?" Tabby wondered.

"She was going to Grundleland to handle governmental affairs," Friendly said.

"Oh, yeah," Tabby said.

The four trotted on through the Dark Forest for quite some time.

"We'll never find it!" Tabby whined.

"But we have to; we promised Princess Royal Blue we would!" Clever Clover said.

"Where are we?" Sugarberry asked. "This forest all looks the same."

"Oh, no, we're lost!" Tabby cried out.

"Yeah, lost, yeah!" Friendly echoed.

"Ah, I know exactly where we are!" Clever Clover reassured them.

"Where?" Tabby shot back.

"Let's not get snippy, guys!" Sugarberry said. "Or we'll never find our way back!"

"Trees old," Friendly remarked.

"They've must have been around hundreds of years!" Clever Clover exclaimed.

"Cool," Tabby said. "This is boring."

Suddenly, they stumbled into a small clearing. In the middle sat an ancient stone well.

"What's that?" Clever Clover asked, clearly confused.

"It is obvious that this is the Well of Confusion," Tabby said intelligently. "Anyone who gets near it starts acting confused."

Sugarberry, Clever Clover, and Friendly started at her with empty faces. "Why are you, umm... What's that word for when someone's, like, really smart?" Sugarberry wondered.

"Intelligent, maybe?" Clever Clover suggested. "I think that's it."

"Yeah!" Friendly agreed.

"Oh, right. Intelligent. So, Tabby, why are you intelligent now?" Sugarberry asked.

"Because if you can not get any more confused," Tabby explained, "you get smart. And you three are confused now."

"Oh," Clever Clover said.

Tabby went on, "And it affects you for as long as you are in this clearing or in the network of tunnels beneath it." She started to walk across the clearing. "But, we have got to find Princess Royal Blue's wand! Come on!"

The other three started to follow her, but suddenly, Friendly tripped over something. "Just a big rock," he said.

Tabby came over to closer examine the rock he had tripped over. After studying it, she exclaimed, "This is not just any old rock, Friendly! There is some writing carved into it! It says this is the burial ground of an ancient pony king!"

Sugarberry looked around nervously. "Maybe we'd better get moving," she suggested.

"Sugarberry! It is just an old skeleton!" Tabby said. "Maybe he is even buried with some jewels or other riches!"

"You're not going to dig it up, are you?" Clever Clover asked. "There's something else carved into the stone on the bottom. I think it says ‘Do not disturb the king' or something like that."

"He's DEAD!" Tabby burst out. "And I would not be taking the jewels; we could just look at them! There may not be anything, anyway, in which case we would just cover it back up."

"Dunno..." Friendly said.

Tabby started to dig besides the protests. "Well, would you look at this!" she exclaimed after awhile. She held up a sparkling purple wand.

"The pony king had a wand?" Sugarberry asked.

"No, silly!" Tabby said. "This is Princess Royal Blue's wand!"

"Is that what we're looking for?" Clever Clover asked.

"Yes!" Tabby said. "And the skeleton's here, too! Royal Blue must have dropped it here and the wand felt the presence of the dead king; so it tried to get closer to the skeleton for some magical reason. Amazing, how it could dig down like that!"

Sugarberry, Clever Clover, and Friendly peered down the hole at the pony skeleton with a gold crown resting on his head and a silver staff laid on one of his hooves.

After staring at it for awhile, Friendly exclaimed, "Tabby! Skeleton twitched!"

Sugarberry gasped. "Get out of the hole!"

Tabby shook her head at them. "Skeletons are completely dead. It is impossible that it could be twitching."

"But that magic wand..." Clever Clover said.

Suddenly, the skeleton jumped up on his feet and glared at Tabby.

Tabby gaped at the skeleton.

"How dare you disturb me in my grave!" the pony king roared.

"But... we were just..." Tabby stammered. "Err... We did not mean to..."

"Now you must pay the price!" the king said angrily.

Tabby reasonably decided it would be better to get out of the hole that to try to reason with him. She quickly got in position to leap and pushed off.

But the skeleton king was quicker that her. He grabbed her tail and pulled her down, into the underground tunnel.

The remaining three all gasped in terror as they watched their friend disappear into the dark of the tunnel.


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