Frog exited the gate next to Marle a bit disoreintated, and when he finnaly got a hold of himself, he muttered, "I don't think I'll ever get used to that." Marle looked at the frog knight and giggled. Embarrased, Frog threw his cape behind him, revealing the hilt of the MasaMune and cleared his throat. "We should be moving, Marle."
Nodding in agreement, Marle followed Frog as the two began their trip out of the mountains. The two had almost made it out of the mountains when they heard a roar and a screech as two dactyls and two runners came hurtling at the two at full speed. Marle didnt even have time to load her crossbow before Frog was in action. Drawing the MasaMune, he quickly jumped as high as he could, to perform the Frog Leap attack that he had mastered, and then he came crashing down atop of one of the runners, with the broad edge of his sword out which succesfully crushed the monsters skull with a sickening thud. He then turned to face the other runner which was now charging him. He calmly stood in his fixed position, and when the runner was about three feet away he jumped, hollering, "Water!"
The runner yelped in surprise as a bubble of water surrounded it and proceeded to lift the startled animal higher and higher into the air. Then seeing her chance to show off a bit, Marle quickly let her crossbow drop and cast Ice. The runner yelped again as the bubble began to slowly drop, due to the quick increase in weight because all the water, including that of which was inside the animal, began to freeze.
When the animal and its buble impacted the ground, both shattered, sending small, sharp pieces of ice everywhere. Seeing her work with the runner was done, Marle proceeded to pick up and load her crossbow, while Frog kept the dactyls at bay with his Water magic.
After finishing the long process of loading her crossbow, Marle noticed the Frog had managed to kill one of the dactlys after taking it from the air by using his Water magic to clip its wings and then taking his broadsword and cleanly cutting the animal in half. So seeing the remaining dactyl, she took aim and fired. "Bullseye, actually right between the eyes, but whatever works." she thought happily.
"Nice shot lass." Frog said as he approached Marle. "Seems I'm not the only one of us who can't seem to put down his weapon and live a peaceful life." he finished with a smile. "Oh, and here's your arrow." he said, holding out the bloodstained arrow. Then seeing Marle hesitate to take the arrow he took it and wiped the blood on the bottom of his cloak. He then held out the arrow again, and this time Marle smiled as she took it, replacing it in her quiver with the rest of her arrows.
It was a while later when the two actually made it out of the mountains and too the path that normally took to get to the village. Coming around the bend, Marle saw the dactyls and rushed over to them. "I had forgot that we left these guys here." she said sympathically.
"I am sure that they have sense enough to leave when they need too, Princess. Now shall we..." just then Frog cut off as he looked to the northern horizon.
"What's wrong?" Marle asked, but when she looked to where Frog looked, and the village was, burning, all she could do was scream. Then filled with her emotions she hopped on one of the dactlys, and spurred it into action, and the two began flying towards the village.
"Marle wait!" Frog exclaimed as she flew off. "Crono will never forgive me if I let something happen to you."
* * * * *
"Ayla beat mean monter, send back where came from." Ayla chanted as she pounded her hand against the upper portion of her sternum.
"Ha! You mangy ape, you couldn't send the fleas that infest your kind back where they came from." came the reply of Ayla's opponent. The monster looked much like a Nizbel from the days when Ayla had fought along side Crono. How much she wished Crono was here to help. He was strong, and never give up. Well Ayla not give up either. She fight to the end, whatever that be. Much like Nizbel, but much larger and even tougher too. The giant dinosaur must have been at least as tall as two Aylas and about as wide as one. This could not be good. And worse yet was the fact that it could breath fire as well as summon electricity, as it had done both when it scavaged the village looking for Ayla.
"Ayla fight to end! Just like friend Crono would do!" Ayla replied and as she did so, she started at a dead sprint towards the monster, and then she jumped and got ready to perform her deadly Triple Kick, but before she could hit her opponent, the giant monsters hand swept up and grabbed her by the tail of the furs she wore for clothing, swung her around, and threw her.
Ayla flew through the front of one building, and out the back, and as she did so, she could here the smashing of the walls of the house and the crackling of the fire. Then, with what was left of the foundation walls gone, the house crumpled in on itself, which made the fire burst to life with the wood hut now in its clutches.
Ayla groaned as she clutched her head, and when she did so she noticed that there awas a steady stream of blood cascading down her forehead and into her mouth. "Ha, and you thought you could take me. One measly counterattack and you;re already down for the count." the monster scoffed as he approached Ayla, his every foot creating a small tremor in the ground.
Ayla didn't give up though, instead she took her hands from her head and slowly pushed herself to her feet. It hurt to stand straight up though, so she slouched over a bit, and weakly rose her hands to fight. "Hmmph. You don't know when to quit do you?" the monster snarled, and with that it rose its hand and swatted Ayla away with the back of its fist, sending her flying again, this time into a large boulder that marked the end of the village.
"Must get up..." Ayla thought. "Be strong like Crono, never give up..." Then her thoughts were interuppted by a massive hand that picked her up again by the tail of her clothes and brought her to eye level. Then, the huge monster took two fingers from its other hand and faced Aylas face towards his. Smiling to the the suffering of his victim, the huge monster sat and stared at Ayla for a moment, and then he cried out in pain, and in the process, flung Ayla away, hurtling towards another burning building.
Turning its head to the source of its pain, the monster saw what looked like a stick portruding from underneath the scales on its right shoulder. "Ready for more you beast?" a small, shrill voice screamed. Then two more sticks were buried in the monsters left shoulder. Screaming in pain, the huge beast turned to face its new opponent. There stood a small, female ape...but this one was different somehow. Ah yes, the clothes and weapon. This ape was different than the others. No matter. The monster silently decided. It will die like the rest.
Roaring again, the monster began to collect static electricity from its surroundings. "I'll just level this whole place with all of you apes in it in one blast." the monster roared.
"I think not," said another voice, this one different than both of the female apes that had dared defy him. Looking up towards the source of the voice, the monster beheld a dactyl fly overhead and then a dark figure leap from it, plummeting towards the monster himself. There was then a gleam of light as the sun's rays reflected from something, and then steel met scale as the object and its weapon hit the monster.
The monster yelled again, but this time it wasn't from anger or petty pain, no this scream was one of agony, as the object and its weapon had torn off most of the flesh from the upper portions of his body.
"Now Marle, Glacier!" the dark being shouted. That wasn't any dark being though, the monster noted. It was a Frog! One of the monsters brothers!
"Brother, you know not of what you do." the monster said. The Frog then turned and looked at the monster with a bemused look on its face.
"I am not one of your brothers." Frog said. "Though I have the appearance of a frog, I was once human. And now, for your punishment for destroying this village and killings many of its residents, you must die. Glacier Marle!" Marle nodded and prepared her part of the spell. Then, after Frog began the spell with his Water, Marle finished it sending her ice spell into the center of the flowing water, which caused a large ice spike, or glacier to be formed. Suddenly the glacier then fell, and impaled the monster where Frog had managed to take away its scale plates. The monster tried to scream but all that came out was air as it's lungs were destroyed by the glacier. Then blood oozed out of its mouth, and its body shuddered one last time before falling limp.
Marle stood silent for a moment while Frog checked to make sure that the monster was dead, and then she realized that she ahd forgotten about Ayla. "Ayla!" she shrieked. Running over to the building that Ayla had been thrown into, she quickly cast an Ice spell, which when the ice melted managed to put out the fire. The fire hadn't left much of the building, but what was left was charred black and weakend.
Marle ran in through a hole in the wall and began searching the interior of the house for Ayla. "I hope I'm not too late," she whispered worriedly. Just then she heard a weak groan coming from across the room. Dashing to where the noise was, Marle found a pile of rubble that had collapsed during the fire, and sticking out from under this pile was an arm...Ayla's arm. "Frog! I need some help in here, Frog!" she yelled.
"What is it, Marle?" Frog asked as he came running into the building, sword drawn. "Where is the foe?" he asked quizically.
"No foe, help me move this," Marle said. "Ayla's underneath it." Sheathing his sword, Frog walked to the pile of rubble and he and Marle began lifting the larger pieces off, until almost two thirds of Ayla's body was unccovered. "Okay, no more yet, with all this on her, it most likely broke something and if we lift all of this off at once, we could end up killing her."
"Aye." Frog agreed. "Shall we use Double Cure?" he then asked. Marle nodded, giving silent approval.
"Yes, I think that would be the best bet for now," she agreed again after thinking for a few moments. Then after the two readied their healing spells, they combined them and formed their Double Cure technique, which they then directed at Ayla.
Cuts and bruises visibly faded, and Ayla's breathing increased a little, but Marle noticed that she still wasn't breathing right. "Okay, now we need to get the rest of this stuff off of her." Marle said. Frog nodded and the two again began taking pieces of the rubble off of Ayla, and soon after they moved the last few big pieces, they began to each take seperate pieces off of the pile, and then after about ten minutes of work they fully uncovered Ayla's battered body.
Her body was not in good shape to say the least. Even after their Double Cure, Ayla was covered with other various major cuts and bruises. The most noticible thing though, was that her clothes were mostly gone, exposing flesh in some places that were...inapproiate to say the least.
Seeing this, Frog stiffly turned around to face the outer wall of the wrecked building. Stifling a giggle, Marle resumed her inspection of the body. It looked like Ayla had a few broken ribs, some deep cuts that definatly needed cleaning, and then, "Oh no," Marle sighed.
"What...what is it?" Frog asked, still facing the other direction.
"She's got a compound fracture in her right femur. We're going to need to set it...now."
"Oh yes, her nakedness, I forgot that makes men uncomfortable. Let me have your cape, we'll use it to cover her up for now." Frog complied, removing his cape and handing it backwords to Marle. Marle rolled her eyes and then took the cape and carefully covered Ayla's body.
"Alright, you can turn around." Marle said.
Turning to face Marle, Frog said, "It's not that I'm uncomfrotable about..that, it's just that it's not right. I mean, she has a husband, and it's not me."
"Yes yes Frog I know, now you've got to help me. I'll set the bone, and when I do that you'll have to heal it."
"Alright Marle, ready when you are." Marle nodded and took the upper part of Ayla's femur in her right hand, and the bottom part in her left, then making sure she wouldn't cut anything with her set, she quickly jerked the two pieces of bone, setting the together with a loud pop. Then Marle heard Frog utter the one magic word needed to cast his spell, and then the bone mended. Marle removed her hands and began to help Frog with a Cure spell that closed the large cut in the meat of Ayla's leg that was caused by the broken bone.
"Alright, that should do it. Now let's find a place where I can finish healing her, and then you can go out and look for the villagers." Frog nodded as he lifted the greater portion of Ayla, whose body was still wrapped in his cape. Marle smiled and picked up Ayla's legs, and the two exited the charred house and headed for one of the lodges that seemed untouched by the flames.
* * * * *
That night, Marle had finished healing Ayla. "Now all she needs is rest." she said to herself. Soon, Marle heard voices and then there was a shadow cast over the room as Frog entered the hut and stood in front of the fire, warming himself as he talked.
"I found them, but most were too afraid to come back with me. I guess we'll have to wait until Ayla is ready to move around and then bring them out, that reminds me, how is Ayla?"
"Oh, as good as can be expected I guess." Marle replied. "She got quite a beating from that guy, but she should pull through okay, she's a tought character."
"That she is." Frog said as he gathered his cloak about him. "Well, I suppose I should head out into that and make sure that the people are sheltered and warm."
Marle nodded staring into the fire. "Is it cold out?"
"Extremely...but I'm an frog remember? I would say it's getting colder, morso to lizards and reptiles than to anything else though. he ammended, turning to face the door. "But I'll be fine, I'll come back to check on you tomorrow?"
"Yes, that'd be fine Frog. Thank you."
"Just doing what Crono would do."
Crono...he had slipped Marle's mind after the events of the day. A pang of grief flooded through Marle, he must be worried sick. No, he wouldn't be, she had Frog with her after all, and he was one of the greatest swordsman that ever lived. And besides, she had other things to worry about besides Crono, her friend was lying there comotose, and she could very well never come out of that state....and yet, she had to because if she didn't she would never have children, and then Marle wouldn't exist....and she hadn't dissappeared....yet. "No use standing here worrying if I'll be here in the morning." she thought. "Better get some rest."
Marle then looked around to make sure no prying eyes were around. "Good," she thought, "I can't sleep in this." she said motioning to her clothing. So, as quick as she could, Marle stripped down untill her clothing lay at a pile at her feet, and then she grabbed the two large animal furs Frog had found and given her. Wrapping up so she was warm, she pulled the pile of her clothing and set it under where her head would rest. "Well, hopefully Frog has sense enough to get some rest and get out of the cold." She nodded in approval of her thoughts. Setting her head down on her pillow, Marle closed her eyes and slowly drifted into a deep sleep.
The night went by as fast as the day had, and Marle woke up to the sound of some animal's roar. Startled she bolted upright, sending her blankets flying only to see Frog walk around the corner into the hut. "Ma...." he started and then abruptly stopped and turned around. "Excuse me, Marle....I had no idea that...." Marle almost smiled, even though he was a frog, she could've sworn that his 'cheeks' grew red when he came in, seeing her stark naked.
"It's okay Frog, I shouldn't have thrown my blankets everywhere, I thought we were being attacked." Standing nude, she stretched her body out, reaching for the ceiling. Then looking around the room for her clothes, Marle remembered then that she had used them for a pillow. "Oh silly me." she thought. Then as quick as she could, Marle dressed herself, and while she tied the last string on her shirt, she said, "Okay Frog, I'm decent."
Slowly turning, she could've sworn that he checked out of the corner of his eye just to make sure. Concealing a grin by acting like she was yawning she said, "So what's up?"
"Most of the villagers are back now. Kino wanted to see Ayla, but I told him that he should see that the villagers returned safely. He protested at first, but after I asked him what Ayla would do he agreed and set off....the villagers have returned faster than I expected...he should be back any time now."
Marle grimaced. "I don't think it's best for him to see her until she's at least concious. I don't want him getting any ideas that shes not going to wake....of course it is a possibility..." Just then Marle heard a soft moan. Marle's gaze shifted immediatly to Frog, but all he did was nod no...so he heard it to. "There it was again!" she thought, and then Marle realized where the groaning was coming from.
"Ohh, Ayla hurt all over." Marle spun and fell to her knees next to the bed where Ayla lay holding her head. "What happen?....friend Marle?"
"Yes Ayla, it's me. And Frog too." Marle replied, taking hold of the cavewoman's hand.
"Monster...what happen to reptite?" Ayla asked, attempting to sit up.
"No no no, don't try to get up, you're weak. As for the monster, Frog and I took care of that." "Good, 'cause Ayla no can fight. Very tired."
"I know Ayla, go ahead and get some rest, your friend is here now."