It was a typical day…. I sprawled out beneath Tree and gazed up through his branches as Zleiphneir and Kafuuka chit chatted over random things. I watched the clouds roll past, the only thing holding my attention, never thinking the serenity was about to be shattered.
“Hahahaha”… The laughter of the puppet tore me from the wanderings of my mind. “Ledah… ugh….” I sat up and dug in my satchel, searching for the medication that helped to hold him at bay. Alas, I found it and quickly stuffed a frog into his britches, but it were a moment too late. Ledah had already begun to agitate Zleiphnier, and of course, Zleiphneir was not in the mood to play with this hater of Tree. Zleiph sprang off the wall and approached Ledah. I watched Ledah closely, my hand moving in my satchel in search of another frog. Zleiph tilted his head and pondered a moment, then spoke.
“I’ve not yet worked out this completely, but maybe a frog would be less bothersome to Tree” He held out his hand and looked at me. “Give me a frog” Not knowing what kind he wanted, I pulled several from my satchel and dumped them into his outstretched hand. Several fell away and jumped to safety as he held one and reached down, removing a knife from his boot.
My eyes grew wide as I realized the fate of this poor frog and Zleiph chanted the words to the spell, then raised his blade and pierced the frog within his hand. As he dropped the amphibian, my gaze turned to Ledah, who was no longer the puppet, but a Frog!
Zleiph grumbled and dumped the water from his bucket as he approached Ledah the Toad “…poison…. something wrong with the spell… catch it… “My mind raced as I realized what had happened, but before I could react, Ledah leapt away into the Gazebo of Equilibrium. I darted after Zleiph, in hot pursuit of this killer frog, scanning the feet of the people gathered there, looking for the frog.
“DONT TOUCH THAT FROG!!” Zleiph’s voice rang out over the roar of the crowd. Several watched as Zleiph tried to capture the elusive frog under his bucket, but it managed to escape. “Why such a big fuss over a frog” someone asked.. “It’s a poison dart frog! I’ve got to catch it before it gets away” Zleiph darted off, desperately attempting to capture this small threatening creature, and Gauge decided to follow. Every time Zleiph had nearly gotten the thing within his grasp, it would “Ribbit! Ribbit!” and spring away to its escape… Up one path and down another, we ran in circles, seemingly always a moment too late.
I followed Ledah towards the Paper cabin, and quickly obtained a basket from there, returning to the pursuit of Ledah. Suddenly, sitting in front of the gates of ages, i spotted him. Slowly, I crept up behind him and brought my basket down. Silently I cheered victoriously as I sat atop the basket. I had just begun to wonder what to do next when Zleiph, Kafuuka and Gauge wandered up the path.