"You have to do better than that!"

The sound of swords clashing rang throughout the sandy clearing. Unnerved by his adversary, Styx swung his saber, disarming the opponent. "I believe this round goes to me, Tharon." The long toothed jaguar grunted, grabbing two knives, one noticeably longer and heavier than the other.

"Two mere knives? I know you can do better than that," Styx commented, swinging his blade downward, frozen by the two knives, the heavier one supporting the lighter one. Looking down, he realized it was too late. As quick as the saber stopped, Tharon had the lighter knife against his neck. "I believe this round goes to me, Styx," Tharon mockingly hissed. Styx was about to retort, then saw a reflection in the cat's eye of something falling.

"Lemme... upth..." Styx said under the weight of the furry foot. Muttering, Tharon lifted his foot.

Thel slowly backed away from Leonial. "I thought I could trust you!" Leonial looked up, his face unreadable. "I thought I could, too," he simply said, clasping his metallic hand around the only source of light. Thel heard his voice again, farther away. "Told you I didn't want to believe in the myths." Choosing between Strisciare and Leonial, he followed.

"I thought you couldn't trust me," Leonial spoke, not looking back, "what changed your mind?"

"Nothing. I just don't know the way out," Thel answered, cross. In a blinding flash, they became lion and shogun. "Trust issues," Leonial muttered.

Thel saw Belloc near the cave entrance, standing by another Bakugan. "Is that...?"

"The notorious backstabbing inferior fish that learned how to walk? Yes, that is Hydra," the lion growled.

Trees flashing by, Tharon pelted towards the crash site. Styx's back visible, he pressed on. Tharon then skidded to a halt, seeing the feathered dragon. Water splashing onto Tharon, Styx emerged, seeing him as well. After a hiss of frustration, Tharon started, "Who-"

"Acheron," Styx confirmed. Acheron managed a small grunt. "We have another brother..." he murmered, the usual blank look in his eyes.

"Thel 'Vadam, prince of Magmatruis, and... Leonial, the royal pet," Hydra spat the last word out. Belloc casted a glare before speaking. "Thel," he began, "have you learned anything?" Glancing at Leonial, Thel answered. "More than I would've thought."

"Why is that fool here?" Leonial challenged. "Leonial, you take orders from Hydra now. You've been demoted," Belloc said evenly. Hydra turned towards the lion. "Your first order is to sit, kitty," he taunted. Light reflecting off of his crest and blades, Leonial stalked into the cave. Hydra started following but was stopped by a hand on his shoulder. "Give it time. He'll come back," Belloc warned, "but don't do that again..."

Thel looked towards Hydra. "You two know each other?" Hydra faced the prince. "You could say that..."

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