The Red Sphere.

I suppose I should explain how exactly Chibi got to this point. Allow me to back up slightly. Chibi was just arriving at the Red Sphere Garden…

“Ahh, that must be it. Well, since Chonic’s messenger probably already got here, I should be able to just get the sphere and get out.” Smiling, Chibi walked up to a pair of trees that seemed to serve as an entrance into the clearing. There, he was stopped by a guard. The guard was your average power chao, and wore a ruby eggshell as a sort of helmet.

“What is your business here?” he asked plainly, hardly seeming to care.

Feeling a bit overdramatic, Chibi pulled out the sword and proclaimed, “I’m here for the sphere!”

The guard immediately snapped to attention. “What did you say?” he questioned, eyeing the sword.

Figuring he hadn’t heard him, Chibi again said, “I’m here for the red sphere.”

As you’ve probably figured, that was not the best idea. The next thing Chibi knew, my sword was knocked out of his hands and the guard had pinned him to a tree.

“Try again. What is your business here? And no jokes!”

“I’m not joking man! You must be. I mean, weren’t you expecting me?” Chibi said, attempting a chuckle.

“We’re always expecting thieves,” the guard said, tightening his grip.

Chibi may not have been the brightest chao, but he had honor, and knew when it was being insulted. “Hey now, I’m no thief. I’m on an important quest!”

“Yeah, to steal our sphere!” the guard retorted, slamming Chibi against the other tree. “No let’s try again… what’s your business here?!”

Chibi looked up at the deep red chao that was currently beating him around. He merely smiled a little and raised his hand as, if he were about to speak, before a fruit fell off the tree and hit him on the head, knocking him out.

“Ahh great, now he’s out cold. Well, might as well take him to the Elder. He’ll know what to do with him,” the guard shrugged, picking up Chibi and slinging him over his shoulder before walking back into the village.

* * * * *

Slowly Chibi began to open his eyes. He reached up and rubbed his throbbing head, still hurting from whatever hit him. He looked around and quickly realized he was no longer outside the garden. He seemed to be in some kind of home, on a cot. “Where am I now?”

“Ahh, so you’re coming around. Good,” a voice said from behind him. Chibi turned around to see a red chao entering the home. He didn’t seem to be a power chao though. He was mostly all the one red color, apart from a crescent of white on his chest. He bore dreadlock like features similar to those of the echidnas, and on his hands were each a pair of spikes. He looked familiar somehow, but Chibi couldn’t quite put his finger on it. “I’d like to apologize for my guard, though he was really only just doing his job,” the red chao continued.

“Where am I?” Chibi asked.

“Don’t worry, you’re in the garden. This is my house. I’m the garden elder, Chuckles.” Chibi had tried his best to stifle his laughter, but still a small chortle snuck out. “Something wrong?” the elder asked, a trace of anger coming into his speech.

“I’m sorry sir, but Chuckles? What kind of name is that?” Chibi asked, laughing. He of course stopped laughing the second Chuckles’ fist impacted with the very spot the fruit had landed on him. “Ow, okay, sorry, it’s a very good name.”

“I would say so. My name has been passed down from elder to elder of this village. No random outsider is gonna insult it and get away with it. Moving on, I understand that you must be the one Chonic’s messenger spoke of?” he asked, sitting down.

“So, you did get the message. Yep, that’s me, Chibi C. But if you got the message, then why’d that guard attack me.”

“He probably was surprised when someone randomly proclaimed they were here for the jewel. We’re very protective of it, and he reacted without thinking it through. They’re both common traits of power chao.”

“Yeah, that’s for sure…” Chibi muttered to himself.

“Say something, runt?” Chuckles asked, glaring at Chibi.

“No, nothing sir!” Chibi responded quickly.

“Good. Now then, on to your reason for coming here in the first place. What’s going on as far as I can tell is this: your village got attacked, the things that attacked, some Omochao, right? Okay, so they also attacked the Blue Sphere Garden, and they’re probably gonna attack the rest of the gardens. You need to get all the sphere’s to power up your sword like in the legend and beat whoever’s controlling them. That sound right?”

“Seems good to me.”

“Alright, then let’s get moving,” Chuckles stood up. “Here, catch.” He threw Chibi his sword.

“Wha… ahh!” Chibi fumbled around with the sword as it fell towards him and managed to grab a hold of it.

“Geez, you’re really klutzy aren’t you? Can’t even catch your own blade.”

“Well you coulda given me a bit more warning than “catch”!”

Chuckles was suddenly standing right in front of Chibi, their faces nearly pressed together. “In battle, do you really think your opponent will give you a warning? Learn to think on your feet. Let’s go.” Chuckles exited the house through a large leaf that served as a sort of door covering. Chibi strapped the sword on and followed.

As they walked through the garden, Chibi took a good look around. He hadn’t noticed it as he was walking up to the village, but the chao from the garden had actually constructed a sort of wall around their clearing by bending the small trees surrounding it so that they linked together into a ring. Within the village there was the usual, some shelters, fruit trees, as well as large sections that were designed for fight training. In them, Chibi could spot the occasional pair of chao having a sparring match. “Wow, you guys sure love your fighting,” Chibi commented.

“Yes, Chao Wrestling and other fighting competition’s are very popular here. When you’re a garden of mostly power chao, what else would you do?”

“Good point.”

Soon enough they arrived at a simple stonewall. It was formed of gray rock, compacted together. In the center of it were too small holes, parallel to each other. “You might want to stand back, I’m not sure how well this’ll work.” Chibi obeyed, stepping back a few steps as Chuckles pulled back his arm. He shoved it forward at the wall, the spikes on his hands going into the holes. The wall seemed to shake slightly from the impact. Soon, a cracking noise could be heard. Chibi watched as an almost perfect crack began to form straight up and down the wall, coming from where Chuckles had punched it. He removed his hand, and the wall shifted and began to move apart, revealing a stone passageway. “Well, that went better than I expected. The sphere is just through this passage.”

They walked through the stone passage, which was much shorter than the one at for the Blue Sphere, and soon emerged in another small clearing surrounded by wall, as well as a ceiling. And in the center was another statue, which looked quite similar to Chuckles. And in its hand was the Red Sphere. “Alright, time to grab that baby and move on to the next…” Chibi was cut off by a sudden explosion from up above, as rock fell from above and Omochao began pouring in. “…one. Great.” One of the Omochao moved towards the statue and took out the sphere. “Oh, this just gets better. Now they have the sphere already!” Chibi reached back for his sword when he noticed Chibi had already begun attacking them. “Can’t let him have all the fun can I?” Chibi quickly drew the sword and ran towards the crowd of Omochao. “Blue Sphere activate!” he yelled. Suddenly the power of the Blue Sphere filled him up and he blasted through the crowd.

“Quick! Find the one with the sphere and get him first!” Chuckles yelled, throwing Omochao left and right.

“Got it!” Chibi began to look for the glow of sphere. Soon enough, he spotted one of the Omochao holding the sphere. “There he is!” Chibi charged at the Omochao, slashing it in half with his sword. Unfortunately, he didn’t catch the sphere as he did so, and another Omochao caught it. “Dang! Alright, I’ll just get you!” Chibi slashed this one in half, and the sphere flew off again. He kept repeating this, still never being able to grab the sphere.

“Try something else!” Chuckles yelled.

“I’m thinking! Let’s see, I keep slashing them, and it flies off…” he pondered out loud as thoughts suddenly filled his head, “… so what do I do other than slash? That’s it!” He located the current holder of the sphere and charging him. Instead of quickly slashing it in half however, he grabbed a hold of the hand that was holding the sphere and stabbed the Omochao, it released the sphere, and Chibi grabbed it, jumping away as the Omochao exploded. Chibi slammed the sphere into the next hole on the sword, and it began to glow brighter. “Let’s try this on for size.” Red energy began to surround him, and the blade suddenly seemed incredibly lighter. But in fact, Chibi had become stronger. He ran into the horde of enemies, and quickly destroyed them, his blade sending out shockwaves of energy from the force of his swings.

Soon enough, the Omochao were all defeated and Chuckles and Chibi had piled them up. “So, the Red Sphere gives me enhanced strength,” Chibi said, examining the orb as it sat in his blade.

“My guess is that the spheres give you powers like those of whatever chao guard them. The blue one made you faster and this one made you stronger.”

“Well, I guess that makes sense. Anyhow, I’m a little worried about the Omochao. They showed up so quickly after we got here. I think I should get headed to the next garden as soon as possible.”

“Good idea. Hey do you have a map or something?”

“Yeah, why do you ask?”

“Give it here. I know a shortcut that will get you to the next garden much quicker. It’s quite a climb, but with the Red Sphere it shouldn’t be that hard for you,” Chuckles quickly drew some markings on Chibi’s map. “There you go. Good luck with the rest of the spheres.”

Chibi took back the map, waved goodbye, and left the garden. But things would only get harder from here, as his enemies began to realize he was a force to be reckoned with…

* * * * *

“My, this Chibi kid is quite the force to be reckoned with! No matter, I’ll just have to strengthen my forces. Head for the next village, now!”


Previous Chapter.


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