Chapter 21- Cambio's Lair
Atlantis walked beside DJ down a long corridor with peeling red wallpaper that looked like congealing blood dripping down the walls. The further down the corridor they walked, the more voices could be heard, slowly growing louder and louder.
DJ stopped outside a black stone door with an aged inscription on it. "Here we are!"
Atlantis stared at the inscription. "What does that say, DJ?"
"Dragon shape-shifter history, Mr. Cambio's room."
Atlantis nodded. "Okay."
DJ smiled. "Do you not speak Old Draconian?"
Atlantis shook her head.
DJ laughed. "That's okay, Cambio will teach you."
Atlantis forced a laugh. "Okay."
DJ opened the door and led the way. Atlantis glanced at the inscription again. She understood Old Draconian, and there was a line carved in small letters that DJ hadn't translated.
Abandon all hope, ye whom enters the Dracon's lair. Ye will never leave again.
Atlantis hurried past the door and almost ran into DJ.
"Welcome to Cambio's lair, Zeena."
Atlantis looked around the cavern. Strips of red wallpaper could be seen all over the walls, giving the impression that a large beast of some sort frequently sharpened its claws on the walls. The remaining strips of wallpaper seemed to slowly ooze down the walls, giving the sinister appearance of blood. Acid dripped down the walls and hissed as it fell from the ceiling. A murky green light lit parts of the room before it faded to black shadows. Cloaked figures could be seen in a ring around the light. A large stone slab with ornately carved scenes of death stood in the center of the eerie green light.
"Who is our guest, djamphir?" asked a deep raspy voice.
"This is Zeena."
A djamphir in all black walked towards Atlantis. "Zeena. Why are you here, Zeena?"
Atlantis gulped. Here was her test. "I was told that there was someone here with more power than imaginable and I wanted to see what it was like to have that kind of magic."
The djamphir began circling around her like a hungry wolf stalking its prey. "I see. Or is it because you're searching for your sister, Atlantis?"
She glared at the djamphir. "Where is she?"
The djamphir laughed, a sound like icy branches rattling in arctic wind. "You will never find out, at least not in time so save her," he snarled. "Now DJ, please, fix your mess and kill her."
"But Cambio…" DJ protested.
"But nothing!" Cambio yelled. "I gave you another chance, now use it!"
DJ looked apologetically at Atlantis. "Maybe if I wasn't supposed to kill you, we could make a great couple."
Atlantis spat at DJ. "Not even in your dreams, traitor."
As DJ lunged to grab her, she clapped her hands once above her head and disappeared in a flash of gold-black light.
Cambio growled and changed into a dragon. "I gave you a second chance and you failed!"
Before DJ could say anything, Cambio knocked him to the ground with a large raven claw.
"I said if you failed again, you would beg for me to kill you. Start begging, and I may take pity on you yet," Cambio growled as he began carving DJ's skin from his bones. DJ screamed and the rest of the hooded figures stepped back, staying silent in the dim light, not wanting to attract their master's wrath.