Chapter Ten: Desperate Times Call for Desperate Measures
Gresha stood between Tenyar and Leih as they watched the shuttles return to the shuttle bay with their family inside.
“Gresha!” Nahla cried out as she ran across the bay to her sister.
Gresha bent down and lifted her sister into her arms and kissed her cheek.
“I thought they had captured you again,” Nahla said as she cried against her sister’s shoulder.
“I’m okay,” Gresha said, holding her sister tight.
“Gresha thank the Gods,” Gio said, pulling both his girls into his arms.
“Hi Daddy,” Gresha said as she leaned into her father.
“What happened?” Pilar asked, hugging his sister and looking around them. “Where’s Geena?” he asked.
“We lost her,” Gresha cried. “I had to let my mist down so the beam could pull us up here, and one of the men knocked Geena out of the beam.”
“No!” Gretchen screamed when she heard Gresha.
“I’m so sorry, Aunt Gretchen,” Gresha cried as she looked around Pilar at her aunt.
Gretchen fell to her knees. “Wasn’t one daughter captured by them enough?” she cried.
Garrett pulled his wife to her feet and held her.
“I’m so sorry!” Gresha cried, watching them.
“We know, Gresha,” Garrett said.
Gresha ran to him and collapsed against him. Garrett held both women in his arms as they cried. Gretchen wrapped her arm around Gresha and kissed her cheek.
“We know it’s not your fault Gresha Hun,” she said as she lifted Gresha’s chin to look at her. “Do you remember when you saved Geena from the snake?” she asked with a smile.
Gresha smiled sadly and nodded her head. Gretchen leaned forward and kissed her forehead.
“You will save her again,” she whispered, smiling at her niece.
“Uncle,” Leih said, looking at Gio. “Gresha found a tracker in the bullet she pulled from Tenyar. We can use it to track where Geena is and beam her up here.”
“Gresha pulled out a bullet?” Pilar asked, looking at his sister.
“She did,” Tenyar said with a nod, “it hurt like hell, but it got the job done.”
“It was a pain I kept dropping it,” Gresha said with a frown.
“I’m so proud of you,” Pilar said, pulling his sister into a hug.
“We don’t know what your gadgets do, so I had to improvise. Leih had a pocket knife he put it in the sterilizer, then I used it and my fingers to pull the bullet out. Then Leih carried him to the blood room and hooked him up to the tubes,” she said with a smile.
“I remembered how you had hooked Gresha up when she was stabbed…” Leih stopped talking when he saw the looks on Gresha’s family’s faces.
“Gretta was stabbed?” Timothy asked, staring at them.
“We saved her,” Pilar pointed out.
“As we always do,” Leih said with a nod.
“How do you plan to get my daughter back?” Garrett asked, watching them.
“With this,” Gresha said as she pulled the bullet from her pocket.
Garrett took it from her and looked at it. “Hmm, I do believe we can work with this,” he said with a nod.
“Let’s get to work then,” Gio said, then turned and led Garrett out of the shuttle bay.
“It’s so strange being here after so long,” Gretchen said, looking around.
“I know what you mean,” Gresha said, taking her aunt’s arm. “Even though I had spent a year up here as Gretta being here as Gresha is so different.”
“And the witch is dead,” Nahla said as she took hold of her aunt’s hand.
“The witch?” Gretchen asked, looking down at Nahla.
Pilar laughed and shook his head at his sister. “She had heard me sing Ding Dong the Witch is Dead.”
“Oh,” Gretchen said with a laugh. “So, who’s dead?”
Gresha laughed, “she’s not dead. But she has been banished for a thousand years.”
“Who?” Gretchen asked, looking at her.
“Neesah,” Gresha said, looking back at her aunt.
“Good,” Gretchen said with a nod, “it’s about time.”
Pilar paced the room where everyone was working to find where the Government had taken Geena. They had already looked where they had taken Gresha when she was Gretta. Masorien, Scott, and Kimberly had shown them their bunkers in New York. They found that they have bunkers there, but it is not where they had taken Geena. They must have figured since Gretta had been rescued from there, it wasn’t safe to hold Geena there.
“What’s taking so long!?” Pilar growled as he stopped pacing and looked at everyone.
“Stay calm, Brother,” Gresha said, placing her hand on his arm.
“I will not stay calm!” he yelled, pulling his arm from his sister’s grasp.
Gresha lost her balance when Pilar pulled his arm from her and fell backward. Tenyar was at her side in an instant and caught her before she hit the floor.
“Watch what you’re doing, Cousin!” Leih growled as he moved over to his wife’s side.
“I’m sorry, Sister,” Pilar said, turning to look at her.
Gresha looked up at the sad look on Pilar’s face and pulled away from her bodyguard and husband. She moved to stand in front of her brother and reached her hand up to catch a tear on her finger. She looked at it with a smile; it was nice to see the Sobriehtons cry.
“I finally got her back,” he said, looking down at his little sister.
“Don’t forget, Brother, she’s my blood,” she said as she looked up into his scared face.
Pilar pulled her into his arms and held her as he cried. She cuddled against him and let her own tears slide down her cheeks. They heard a loud noise and turned to find Garrett throwing things against the wall.
“Uncle Garrett,” Gresha said as she moved out of her brother’s arms.
“This is useless,” Garrett growled, looking at his niece, who was once his daughter. He shook his head and sat back in his seat. “We need more info before I can do anything else.”
“I will find this information if I have to steal a Snoggle!” Gresha yelled as she left the room.
“What the hell is a Snoggle?” Garrett asked, looking at the other men in the room.
“A dangerous Sobriehton search Dog,” Pilar said as he looked at the door his sister had just exited.
“She wouldn’t,” Leih said, looking at the door. “Would she?”
“To save someone she grew up thinking was her big sister?” Tenyar asked, looking at the other two men.
“Sheek,” Leih growled, then ran out the door after his wife.
“Damn it,” Pilar grumbled as he ran after his cousin.
“I’ll beat you there,” Tenyar said as he disappeared in a swirl of colors.
“Wait for me!” Garrett called out, running after them.
Gresha watched the trainer with the Snoggle. He was trying to get the Snoggle to sniff her mother’s shirt. The Snoggle sniffed it, then shook his head. It was as though there wasn’t enough sent on the cloth. It has been over twenty years. Gresha shook her head.
“Hello, boy,” she said with a smile.
The Snoggle turned to her and ran from his trainer straight at her.
“No!” the trainer bellowed.
The Snoggle stopped inches from Gresha and licked her face. Gresha giggled as she wrapped her arms around his neck.
“I need your help,” she whispered, crying against him.
The Snoggle laid his large head on her shoulder and huffed.
“How dare you interrupt me!” the trainer said as he took Gresha by the arm and yanking her away from the Snoggle.
The Snoggle turned his head and growled at the trainer.
“Let go of me!” Gresha screamed as she tried to pull her arm from his grip.
“Do you know what kind of punishment you would get on Sobrieh for disrupting a trainer with his Snoggle?” the trainer bellowed. “It’s bad enough you’re trying to bond with him, you Earth brat.”
“How dare you!” Gresha screamed, glaring at him.
The Snoggle got to his feet and growled at the trainer.
“That’s enough!” the trainer yelled as he slapped the Snoggle on the nose with his wand.
The Snoggle sat but didn’t stop growling.
“Let me go!” Gresha screamed as she continued to try and pull her arm free.
A gust of wind and a splash of colors flashed by them, and Gresha disappeared from the man’s grasp. Tenyar stopped several feet from the trainer and the Snoggle with Gresha in his arms.
“Tenyar,” the trainer said, glaring at the other man.
“How dare you touch the High Princess like that,” Tenyar growled as he set Gresha on her feet.
“She was trying to steal my Snoggle. You know what the punishment on Sobrieh is for that,” the trainer said, glaring at Gresha.
“We’re not on Sobrieh,” Pilar said as he stopped beside his sister.
“No, but rules still apply. I owe her three lashings…”
“You won’t be touching my wife,” Leih said with a growl, standing in front of the others.
“I didn’t try to steal him,” Gresha said, looking at the three men around her. “I swear.”
“What do you call it then?” the trainer asked with an angry growl as he continued to glare at them. “Now hand her over, and I won’t press charges.”
“Not going to happen,” Leih said with a protective growl, standing his ground between the man and his wife.
“What the hell is going on here!?” Gio demanded as he walked into the Snoggle training area.
“Your daughter tried to steal my Snoggle,” the trainer said, pointing at Leih and Gresha. “They will not give her to me for the lashings.”
“You won’t be touching my daughter,” Gio said, watching the trainer.
“My king, the law states that anyone who…”
“I know the damn laws I wrote them!” Gio yelled. “And they do not include a royal.”
“She is half Earth…”
“You finish that sentence, and you will be the one receiving the lashings,” Gio warned the trainer.
“I didn’t try to steal him, Daddy,” Gresha said as she peeked around her husband.
“She would say anything to…”
“Enough!” Gio snarled, looking at his daughter. “Garrett came to me and told me what you had said.”
“I know what I said, Daddy,” Gresha said with a nod, then moved to stand in front of her husband. “But I didn’t. When I got here, I remembered that I couldn’t get him to do anything, anyway. So, I said hi to him, and he ran to me and licked me,” she said with a giggle, remembering the feel of his large tongue on her cheek.
“That is ridiculous…”
“Only way to prove it is for her to do it again,” Gio said, watching his daughter. “If the Snoggle does not run to her, I will decide her punishment,” Gio said, looking at the trainer.
“As you wish, my king,” the trainer said with a mischievous grin.
“My king?” Tenyar asked, looking at Gio.
“You three back away from my daughter. If she broke a law, I must do what I must. She shouldn’t be treated differently because she’s royalty,” Gio said, watching his daughter.
“Father,” Pilar said, shocked.
“Back away. Now!” Gio ordered the three men around Gresha.
Unhappily the three men backed away from Gresha.
“Now call him,” Gio said, watching his daughter.
“I didn’t call him,” she said, looking at the Snoggle.
“Just do whatever you did when you came into this area,” Gio said, watching her.
Gresha took a step towards the Snoggle with a smile. “Hello, boy.”
The Snoggle looked to want to go to her but didn’t move.
“See there,” the trainer said with a smirk.
“What were you doing when she stole the Snoggle?” Gio asked, looking at the trainer.
“I didn’t steal…”
Gio put his hand up to stop her from talking. Gresha frowned and looked behind her at her protectors. All three looked beyond angry.
“Father,” Pilar said, watching the trainer. “Have the trainer step away from the Snoggle.”
“I’m not moving away from my Snoggle. He will attack everyone here.”
“Do as my son said,” Gio said, watching the trainer.
The trainer backed away from the Snoggle with an angry look on his face.
“Gresha,” Gio said, nodding to his daughter.
Gresha smiled at the Snoggle again. “Hello, boy.”
The Snoggle turned from his trainer and the king and ran at Gresha. She laughed when he stopped in front of her and licked her face again, then leaned forward and wrapped her arms around his neck.
“Good boy,” she whispered.
“You lie about a High Royal again, and I will have you hung,” Gio said, then left the area.
The trainer glared at Gresha and the Snoggle. “I won’t have my Snoggle taken from me,” he said with a growl. “It took me three years to capture him.”
“Poor boy,” Gresha said, rubbing his nose.
“Dingo, come!” the trainer called.
The Snoggle looked at Gresha longingly, then turned and ran to his trainer. The trainer glared at them as he held the shirt up to the Snoggle’s nose again.
“He abuses the Snoggle,” Pilar said as he walked up behind her.
“How can they get away with that?” Gresha asked with a cry.
“Unless someone figures out the Snoggle’s name, it’s his property,” Tenyar said with a shake of his head.
“Let’s get out of here,” Leih said, taking his wife by the arm.
Gresha cried as they walked her out of the training room. She heard the Snoggle whimper and cried harder.
“How did you know it would work if the trainer backed away from the Snoggle?” Tenyar asked Pilar as they walked down the hall towards the communications room.
“I read his mind,” Pilar said with an annoyed look and a shake of his head. “When Gresha said “hello boy” the trainer shocked the Snoggle to keep him where he was.”
“I wish I really could steal him away,” Gresha cried.
“So, do I,” Pilar said with a shake of his head. “That trainer has only one Snoggle, but he had hunted this Snoggle like he had said for three years.”
“What’s so special about this Snoggle?” Leih asked, holding his wife close to his side.
“He’s the leader of his pack. Or he was until his pack was all caught but for him. He’s fast and aggressive and can sniff out anything.”
“He’s having a hard time sniffing out Gwyneth,” Tenyar pointed out.
“I think my mother’s clothes are too old,” Gresha said as she looked up at the back of their heads.
“Hey, I didn’t think of that,” Pilar said with a grin as he read her mind.
“Still annoying,” Gresha said with a laugh.
Pilar stopped and turned to his sister. Leih and Gresha stopped before they collided into him.
“But helpful,” he said with a grin. “I need to go tell father that Gwyneth’s clothes have been aired out. They’ve been hanging in the closet for more than twenty years without her wearing or touching them.” He kissed his sister on the cheek, then ran towards their father’s office.
“Great thinking,” Leih said as he kissed his wife’s cheek.
“We already knew she’s brilliant,” Tenyar said with a grin. “Where would you like to go, princess?”
Gresha smiled at her bodyguard. He knows that she’s tired of waiting in the communications room while they tried to pinpoint where the men in black had taken Geena.
“How about the city,” she said with a smile.
“Sounds good. Anything specific?” Tenyar asked, watching her.
“Des,” Gresha and Leih said at the same time.
Gresha laughed as she hugged her husband’s side. Tenyar nodded, then they changed direction and headed to the city.