Glimmer looked around in awe. She had expected the home of a plant monster to be something terrifying but this place was one of the most beautiful she had ever seen. All around her was lush vegetation unlike anything she'd ever encountered before. To her right was a vast lake with large lily pads floating on the surface.
I've never seen so much green she thought. She looked out over the water and smiled as she saw a bird with grey and white plumage, long legs, a yellow beat and a long neck standing on a floating log. It looked like a sentinel standing on guard.
She shook her head to clear it. There's no time for sightseeing. I'd better start looking. With that thought she set off into the swamp.
Some time later, despite her best efforts to stay positive she was getting increasingly worried. With every passing second the Horde got closer to the rebel camp and she had no idea whether she was even heading in the right direction.
Startled, Glimmer immediately halted. She turned to see someone step out of the foliage.
In front of her stood a young woman wearing a short-sleeved red top and short blue leggings made of a material Glimmer did not recognise. She had light skin, blue eyes and long snow-white hair with two black streaks in her bangs. Her beautiful face wore a friendly smile.
"Sorry I startled you but you were about to step on a cottonmouth" she said.
"Cottonmouth?" Glimmer repeated. She looked down at her feet and saw that there was a brown snake with darker brown markings coiled on the ground in front of her. With a yelp she took several steps back.
"Don't worry they're not aggressive" the white-haired woman reassured her. "They won't attack unless provoked. Just don't step on it and you'll be fine."
Glimmer kept a wary eye on the snake for a moment. When it didn't move she allowed herself to relax and turned back to the woman.
"Thank you for warning me" she said.
"My name is Glimmer."
"I'm Abby. Nice to meet you Glimmer."
"Abby…" she repeated. "Is that short for Abigail?"
She can't be… Can she? Deciding to take a chance Glimmer asked, "um, are you married to someone named Swamp Thing?"
Abby's expression instantly became one of mixed concern and hope. "Do you know where Alec is? Is he okay?"
"Wait, who's Alec?"
"Alec Holland is Swamp Thing's real name" Abby explained. "Well sort of, it's complicated. But never mind that, is he okay?"
"He's fine" Glimmer answered. "But he's been tricked by Hordak."
Glimmer recalled that Adora had told her the people of Earth knew nothing about the Horde or of Etheria. Convincing Abby to come with her might be difficult.
"Let me explain" she said hesitantly. "I'm from a world called Etheria. I'm part of the Great Rebellion fighting to free our world from the Evil Horde. Their leader Hordak tricked Swamp Thing into thinking we kidnapped you so he'd help them. I need you to come with me to Etheria to show him the truth. Please my friends are in danger…"
To her surprise Abby just nodded and said "of course."
"You believe me?"
Abby smiled. "I'm an empath, I can sense the feelings of others. If you were being dishonest I'd know. Besides I've seen much weirder things. Come on, let's go and help my husband and your friends."
Glimmer smiled back. "Thank you."
Mantenna laughed as his stun beams brought down two more rebels that had been hiding in the trees. They dropped to the ground and a pair of Horde Troopers ran over to secure them.
"I got them Hordak!"
"Good, good" the Horde leader replied, rubbing his hands together eagerly. They had already captured several rebels in addition to Bow and Perfuma. "Soon all of the Rebels will be my slaves!" He laughed evilly.
"Don't be so sure of that Hordak" said She-Ra as she somersaulted from the treetops and landed on her feet. "Swamp Thing, the Horde is deceiving you. "
"That is She-Ra, their leader" said Shadow Weaver, smooth as oil. "Once she is defeated Abby will be safe."
Swamp Thing raised his hands, summoning vines beneath She-Ra's feet. She leaped into the air just in time to avoid them.
"Sword to net" she called. At once the Sword of Protection transformed into a fine but strong net. She hurled it through the air and it landed right on top of Swamp Thing.
But as she did so a branch of one of the trees swung forwards and knocked her out of the air. Another branch swiped her before she could recover and she landed flat on her face. More vines sprouted from the ground, wrapping themselves around her wrists and ankles so that she was held down tightly. She-Ra tried to break free but the vines, imbued with Swamp Thing's power, were too strong even for her. For his part, Swamp Thing transformed himself into roots and burrowed into the ground, easily getting out of the net. He then emerged from the soil and re-formed himself.
Hordak howled with triumphant laughter. "At last, She-Ra and the rebellion are defeated!"
Hordak abruptly stopped laughing and everyone looked up to see Swift Wind descending from the sky with Abby and Glimmer on his back. He touched down and both of them climbed off.
"Abby!" With impressive speed for one his size Swamp Thing hurried over and put his arms around her. "Are you all right?"
"I'm fine" she replied. "Alec, Hordak lied to you. The rebels never kidnapped me."
Seeing his victory rapidly slipping away Hordak yelled, "Shadow Weaver! Quickly, teleport She-Ra to the Fright Zone!"
She started to raise her hands but Glimmer was too quick for her.
"Not so fast Shadow Weaver" she said as she fired a beam of yellow light from her hands. The beam wrapped around Shadow Weaver and immobilised her.
"You'll pay for this" she hissed.
She-Ra leaped to her feet as Swamp Thing willed the vines to retract. She retrieved her sword just in time to reflect a stun beam fired at her by Mantenna back at him. He slumped to the ground in a daze.
Swamp Thing summoned giant green vines that ensnared the Horde Tanks and began tearing them apart. Metal shrieked as it gave way, leaving the tanks in pieces while more vines carried captured rebels to safety. Horde Troopers who tried to fight back were also caught in the vines and crushed into scrap.
"Blast! I was so close" Hordak exclaimed. He transformed into a rocket and blasted off into the sky. Shadow Weaver, having finally managed to get loose, teleported herself and Mantenna away.
"Bow, Perfuma, are you all right?" She-Ra asked as she freed them.
"We're okay" he replied. "Uh, what's going on?"
"It's a long story."
Soon afterwards they were all back in the rebel camp. She-Ra and Glimmer were explaining what had happened to Bow and the others while Abby was tending to the wounds a few rebels had picked up during the fighting. A tense Swamp Thing stayed far enough away so he wouldn't disturb her patients but close enough to keep his eyes on her.
"Thank you Mrs Holland" said a rebel as Abby finished bandaging his arm.
"My pleasure" she replied. She then walked over to her husband. Noting his concerned look she gently said, "it's okay Alec. I'm not going anywhere."
"I know" he replied. "I apologise if I am being a hindrance to your efforts. After what had happened I need to see that you are all right."
She smiled. "You don't need to apologise, I know it's only because you care." She leaned forwards and they kissed.
Swamp Thing relaxed, the tension leaving his body. They walked over to where She-Ra, Glimmer and Bow were gathered.
"I am sorry for the trouble I caused you" said Swamp Thing.
"It's all right" She-Ra replied. "You did what anyone would do to save someone they loved."
"Are you sure you can't stay a little while?" Glimmer asked.
"Yeah, we could really use your help against the Horde" said Bow.
"I am sorry but I am needed back on Earth" he replied.
The mention of Earth reminded She-Ra of her mother and a flicker of sadness went through her. She managed to keep it off her face but Abby sensed it.
"Is something wrong She-Ra?"
"Oh, it's nothing" she said.
"Okay, well if you ever want to visit us feel free to drop by" Abby told her.
"Yes, you will always be welcome in the swamp" Swamp Thing agreed.
After everyone had said their goodbyes, She-Ra gave Abby a lift on Swift Wind to the Dimensional Gate while Swamp Thing merely sent his consciousness into a new body he had formed there, letting his old one fall apart. When they were gone Bow noticed Perfuma looking sadly at the remains of Swamp Thing's old body.
She sighed. "Oh I was just thinking how good it would be to have someone like him as a husband. But I know it will never happen. He loves Abby and she loves him."
"Cheer up Perfuma. I'm sure you'll find someone else" said Glimmer kindly.
"Yes you're right. I need to stay positive" she agreed, her usual effervescence returning. "Thank you Glimmer. I feel much better now."
"What are friends for?"
"I'm going to go and brighten up the camp with some flowers. That always cheers me up"
She danced away into the woods while humming to herself. Bow and Glimmer chuckled as they watched her go.
Back on Earth another portal opened. Swamp Thing and Abby stepped through it and it closed behind them.
"Ah it's good to be home" said Abby as she looked around at the familiar sights of the swamp. They had returned to the same point where she and Glimmer had left. The lake sparkled in the sun.
"Yes, though I must admit it would have been interesting to learn more about the plant life of Etheria" Swamp Thing mused.
"Do you think we'll ever go there again?"
"I believe we will."
"I hope so." Abby stretched her arms over her head. "In the meantime I think I've had enough excitement for today."
"Indeed. Ah, I think I know something that would help" said Swamp Thing.
He went over to the lake and shape-shifted into a form that resembled a giant lily pad with curled-up edges, two flippers and his head at the front.
Abby grinned. "A leisurely boat ride. Alec that's perfect."
She climbed aboard and Swamp Thing rowed them out across the lake, heading for home while Abby settled back and relaxed.