Monster in the Mirror

Chapter 3

Looking around the living room, I saw the basics of any house: couch, TV, and a few pictures on the walls. Taking in the pictures, I saw the boy in front of us with other kids making goofy faces or just by himself, and a few had him with a rather pretty lady that I had figured to be his mother. Out of all the pictures, not once have I seen anyone that could possibly be a father figure to the boy. Me being as curious as I was, itched to ask, but that wouldn't be my place or polite at all…so I kept quiet about it.

Turning my attention from the pictures, I glanced at the news that was playing on the TV for a second before noticing the same pretty lady from the pictures sitting on the couch texting on her phone. Glancing at Alex, I saw him taking in the room the same way I had before sending a wary look in my direction before following Butters and the 'Grand Wizard' through the living room. Unlike the boys, I had actually taken a few seconds to scrape the snow off my boots before stepping further into the house.

As we passed the couch, the lady on the couch glanced up and smiled at us. "Oh, who're your new friends Eric?" she asked the boy now known as Eric, who gave her a deadpanned look. "Shut up mom, not now." he replied as he continued leading us through the house. 'What the hell?! He is ALLOWED to speak to his mom like that? If Alex or I had ever done that, we would get a belt to the ass by our father immediately.' I thought with a shocked look on my face as I stopped walking, much to Eric's annoyance.

"I'm Saphira, and this is my brother Alex, it's very nice to meet you ma'am." I greeted, causing her to smile wider at us. "My how polite you are, you two can call me Mrs. Cartman. Now run along and play, I'm sure the other children would love to meet you!" she said as she kindly waved us off towards the backyard. As we followed Eric and Butters into the kitchen, Eric stopped us with his stick. "Don't talk to her, she's not part of the game." he said simply before opening the sliding glass door and led us out into the backyard.

As soon as we stepped onto the deck, Eric spread his arms out wide towards the yard, bringing our attention to him. "Welcome…to the Kingdom of Kupa Keep." he said as Alex and I took in the creation that had once been his backyard. Pathways were set by rope held down by rocks, on the left was a large rock that none of the boys could move, so they simply called it "The Rock of Insanity" with a cardboard sign. Next to that was a sandbox sealed with a rope fence, where a boy dressed in green with medicine strapped to his chest was petting a cat.

To the right was a table with an assortment of 'armor and weapons' on it while a boy dressed in red and blue with a metal helmet on his head stood next to it shining up a wooden sword with a rag. Further down the path was a castle made from cardboard and tape with a large tent set up in the middle, suspended from two of the towers was a flag that read 'Kupa Keep' in bright-red paint. Standing next to the tent was a kid with long blonde hair in a crown and a dress with an orange hood covering their face. I couldn't tell if this kid was a boy or a girl from this distance so I'll just call them 'she' for now.

All in all, this was awesome, maybe Alex and I can make some real friends here…until we were forced to leave before I could be discovered again. "This is awesome! You guys built this?" I asked Butters, who nodded with a smile. "Sure did! Well, it took us three days but we made it." he said as Eric smirked in pride at my comment, while Alex continued to gaze at the kingdom in amazement before Eric led us further into the yard and toward the weapons table.

"Our weapons shop here is tended by Clyde, a level 14 warrior." he said as he introduced the boy in red before walking off to the sandbox. At Clyde's slight wave, I couldn't help the shocked look on my face as Alex nodded his own greeting. Smiling at this, I gave Clyde my own smile and wave before following Eric over to the sandbox. As I took in the appearance of the boy petting the cat, I saw he had diabetic medicine strapped to his chest as well as his tongue sticking slightly out of his mouth. 'How is his tongue not frozen?' I wondered as Eric began telling us about this section of the kingdom.

"Here you can see our massive stables, overseen by the level 9 ranger Scott Malkinson, who has the power of diabetes." he said as I raised an eyebrow. 'Either this is an act, or he really acts this way with his friends. Oh well, who am I to judge?' I thought as I nodded to the boy with a grin, who smiled back and waved at us. Catching our attention again, Eric led us over to the 'castle' and stopped next to the kid in the white and purple dress I saw when we first entered the backyard.

"And here of course, is the breathtaking and lovely Princess Kenny: the fairest maiden in all the kingdom." he introduced, making me feel extremely embarrassed for assuming this kid was a girl. And apparently it showed, judging by the snicker Alex gave off, causing me to elbow him in the ribs as Kenny started playing with the hair on his wig. "Don't ask why Kenny wanted to be a chick, it's just how he seems to be rolling right now." Eric mumbled to us from behind his hand as he glanced between us and Kenny a few times.

As Alex and I took in the other kids and the kingdom, I felt an intense burning in my back that sent chills down my spine. With a sudden twinge of fear, I rapidly checked myself over to make sure nothing had changed or come out of place. When I found nothing amiss to my relief, I turned around to find Kenny staring at me intently, as if I were a germ under a microscope: another feeling I was well-accustomed to. After a few seconds of our staring match, Kenny turned his attention elsewhere, causing the burning feeling to immediately go away.

'The hell was that about?' I wondered as Alex and I approached Eric and Butters again. "You have been sought out New Kids because humans everywhere are in great danger. I need something from you, and in return, I am prepared to allow you into my kingdom. I know you two are very excited, it's time for your first quest but first: please tell us thy names." Eric said as he gestured to us. "I am Saphira MacManus, and this overgrown tick is my brother Alex." I introduced, ducking under Alex's arm without looking as he swung at me: much to the boys' surprise.

"The hell kind of name is MacManus?" Eric questioned with a snicker, I didn't let it bother me though. "The name itself is Irish: my family couldn't decide whether or not to use an Irish name, a Scottish name, or a German name, considering we're all three." I replied as Eric suddenly became excited with my answer. "You're German too?! How do you see Hitler and the Jews?! Do you dream of massive genocide?! The Holocaust?! Or weapons of mass destruction?! C'mon damnit answer meeee!" he rapidly questioned and quite frankly, it was a bit creepy, not only because he broke character so quickly…but also because he caught the attention of everyone in the backyard.

"I see Hitler as someone who had a twisted mind as to come up with something as brutal as The Holocaust, the Jews don't deserve any more discrimination, and no I don't dream of weapons of mass destruction or genocide." I said as Eric looked at me as if I had physically hit him. "How the FUCK do you not agree with Hitler?! You know what: I don't even think you're German at all! Just some lying bitch who claims to be part of the greatest fucking race known to man!" he shouted, causing me to take a few steps backwards as Alex cowered behind me at the intensity of his yelling.

As he glared at me, I stared right back with a fearless look on my face and knew just how to not only win this argument, but knew how to cut his ego down a few notches too. "Natürlich bin ich Deutsch, warum nicht ich sein?" I asked with a cocky smirk, causing his eyes to widen to the size of dinner plates before he grinned and slapped me hard on the back before returning to character as the Grand Wizard of Kupa Keep.

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