Africa and Adele

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Dedicated to SVTSwrites for her help with Padma.

Padma POV:

We had been rushing a lot with preparations to leave, because everyone was nervous because of the attack while they were looking for me, and we were finally ready. We had already had some breakfast and packed everything, and were just making sure we didn't leave anything behind.

I mounted Lazuli, while the others mounted their respective dragons. I strapped in my legs, and prepared for takeoff. I had gotten used to flying, after a while, but you could still see traces of my previous fear of heights, which Lazuli, my wonderful partner of mind and soul, had helped me get over after I bonded with her. It was kind of weird that I used to be afraid of heights, but I could do complicated jumps and twists for gymnastics.

A few seconds later, we were airborne. I opened my eyes again, and released my grip on Lazuli's spike. I knew she would tell me if she were to preform any dives or complicated maneuvers, so that I could hold on again. In the meantime, I let myself relax and told my young dragoness to fly to Natalia and Silva. Of all the group, Natalia was my closest friend, and I had the feeling that Lazuli liked Silva as more than friends, but every time I asked her about it, she completely ignored me, and blocked off my contact to her mind. It was extremely annoying, so I had stopped.

We talked about nothing in particular, subjects ranging from school, to hobbies, to life in general. At some point, we started talking about phobias. I had told Natalia about my acrophobia and we started sharing fun facts about them. For example, I knew that the origin of the word came from the god Phobos, son of Ares and Aphrodite.

"You know that tripophobia is the phobia of geometric shapes without a pattern?"

"No. Did you know that xenophobia is the phobia of foreign people?"

"Weird. Have you heard of agoraphobia?"

"No. What is it of?"

"Phobia of going out of your house."

"Hipopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia is the phobia of long words."

"Ok? That is so weird. Who would have that?"

"No idea."

Then Elizabeth approached with Opal.

"What are you talking about?"

"All the different types of phobias. They are some that are so extremely weird."

"Weird topic of conversation much?"

"Yeah."

"Did you know that there is a fish who has a transparent head and can make its eyes look straight up? It's called the spook fish"

"Creepy. Did you know that eating chocolate helps with math?"

"I'll do that from now on. Do you know that if you say rise of lights it sounds like razor blades with an Australian accent?"

"Cool. We should try it and test it against Trixie."

"Yes."

"Eheu is alas in Latin."

"Imordnila is when you say a word backwards and it forms another word."

"Cool."

Our conversation was interrupted because we were landing, so I held on to Lazuli's spike again. All the dragons went into a formation dive, and when I opened my eyes again, we were in the middle of an African savanna.

"We're in Gorongosa, not far from Beira."

"Oh my gosh, can we please take a tour? I know the park is huge, but I want to see at least a part of it! Please?"

Typical Natalia. Although I could understand why she was so excited. This place was amazing! It had a huge biodiversity, and variety of ecosystems.

"Nat, maybe later, once we find the Rider."

"Ok."

We dismounted, and the dragons took off again to search for the new one. We started walking, just looking around downtown. In no time at all, Lazuli contacted me.

"We just found Solaris, he said that Adele must be getting ready for her ballet presentation. He said you could go watch her, and then try to find her behind the scenes. If you want, he'll tell her in advance about you."

"Ok. Thanks Lazuli."

"See you later."

On our way to the theatre, I noticed that there was a figure dressed in black with a cap and sunglasses, who was following us from a distance. A chill crept up my spine, because I remembered that the other Riders had been attacked when they were searching for me. If they kept on following all the way to the theater, I would tell the others, but in the meantime I didn't want them to worry.

We arrived, and went to the backstage entrance. Raven knocked, and waited for someone to open. A young woman, seemingly the teacher, opened. Behind her I could catch a glimpse of all the ballerinas getting ready, if I'm not wrong, Solaris had said that they were preforming Coppélia.

"I'm Lia, the ballet teacher here." She introduced herself. "What do you need?"

"Were looking for Adele Ballewa. She knows we were coming, but we can perfectly understand if she can only talk after the performance. I promise it won't take long"

"Sure, just be quick, she still has to warm up."

Lia called her, and a girl, about my age, came. She had dark skin and chocolate brown eyes, which sparked with excitement, but also nervousness, most likely because of her upcoming presentation. Adele was dressed in a long skirt and a loose white shirt,which was embroidered in red. The skirt was black, and a little past her knees, and had a shorter apron, again with red designs. The thing that was kind of weird, was that instead of pointe shoes, she was wearing some red boots. Her dark brown hair was in a braid, All in all, she looked like she could be at the Oktoberfest, which was exactly what Hans remarked.

"I'm Adele Ballewa, although you already know that. I take it you're the Riders Solaris was talking about?"

"Yes we are. I'm Raven, and these are Valerie, Eric, Natalia, Elizabeth, Hans, Diana, Jin, Trixie, and Padma."

"Nice to meet you. Also, do you think we can talk more after the performance, or tomorrow? I have to go warm up now."

"Sure. Don't worry. Tomorrow then?"

"Ok. And by the way, enjoy the show."

Hi guys, I'm back after taking a break for NaNoWriMo. Good new is that I was able to get 10k words on Legacy, the sequel for this, so the second this is finished, I'll be able to start updating that. Also, a massive than you to SVTSwrites and FantasybkLover, for both help with Padma's character and encouragement to keep writing.

~Valerie.

Ps: this book is planned for 36 chapters.

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