Simba stood in front of Pride Rock, shaking in anger. He thought about the words he had said, so long ago; "Kovu, I was wrong." Maybe he hadn't been wrong. And Kiara was in on it! Kovu was allied with the hyenas, and Kiara was going along with it. That didn't make sense, Kiara wouldn't join the hyenas. And what did Kovu mean by "Kizazi made friends with a hyena cub"? Kizazi knew what they had done, he wouldn't do that. Nothing was making sense any more! Simba knew he should talk to somebody about this, and also knew he couldn't talk to Kovu. It would feel weird to talk to Kiara, but maybe he could talk to Nala. Yes, he would tell Nala, she needed to know, anyway. Simba walked into the den to wait for her.
Meanwhile, Kovu was running throught the Outlands, searching for the hyenas. Why had Simba done that?! "I just saved your life". He was clearly not in any danger! Kovu knew that Simba wouldn't take it well, but that was just ridiculous! How was he supposed to get the hyenas to trust him now?
"Shenzi!" he yelled, "Banzai! Talk to me! I swear, Simba wasn't there with me, I don't know what he was doing here!"
Simba heared a rustling in the bushes.
"Waanzin, stay still!" Banzai snarled.
"Banzai, I know you're there," Kovu said, to the bush, "Simba wasn't here with me, it makes no sense for him to be here. Please listen to me!"
"Are you alone?" Shenzi asked, from somewhere behind Kovu.
Kovu took a deap breath, and roared loudly. Nobody roared in answer, nobody came to see if he was hurt. This was evidence enough for Shenzi, who silently stepped out of the tall grass.
"What was that?!" she shouted, startlingKovu and making him jump, "Why was Simba here?!"
"Like I said," Kovu replied, "There was no reason for him to even be in the Outlands, I don't know why he was here, but I know he wasn't with me."
"How are we supposed to live in the Pridelands with lions like that guy around?" asked Banzai, stomping out of the bushes.
"I'll try to talk to Simba about his attitude."
"But what about the lionesses? There's twice as many of them than there are of us!"
Ed, still halfway between a large rock, nodded along. Waanzin was becoming more and more concerned.
"They're under my rule, they'll have to comply. Even if they're mad at first, I'm sure they'll learn to be okay with you guys. I'm sure I can talk to Simba, and I'm sure the lionesses will be okay."
"We're not gonna discuss anything else right now," said Shenzi, "Once you calm that Simba guy down, send your little son to tell us where to meet you next."
"'Cause I trust him. More than I trust you."
"Alright," said Kovu, with a sigh, "I'll see you soon."
"Later. And make sure your alone next time."
Shenzi turned tail, and trotted off, with Banzai and Ed at her heels. Waanzin lagged behind.
"Don't mind them," she said, urgently, "They have bad memories about lions. I really wanna stay friends with Kizazi, so please try to make this work."
"I'll do my best."
"Waanzin!" Shenzi barked.
Waanzin hurried after her family.
Simba was lying in the den, when a figure appeared.
"Hi, Simba," said Nala, walking in and sitting down next to him.
"Is something wrong, honey?" she asked.
"Sort of. I need to talk to you," he replied.
"What is it?"
"Well... I was in the Outlands earlier, and I saw a few hyenas. But that wasn't the only thing... Kovu was with them, and they were talking. I thought they were threatening him, but it turned out that he was talking to them about living in the Pridelands again!"
Nala was confused.
"Simba, what are you talking about?"
"He's going to let them back in the Pridelands. It's going to be just like Scar's rule."
"Theres no way he's going to do that. And he can't do it without Kiara's permission."
"But that's just it! He said that Kiara was in on it, she wants this to happen!"
"Simba, there has to be more to this. You know that Kiara wouldn't want that. We need to talk to her."
"I guess your right. When should we talk to her?"
"She should be back from hunting by now. Spotty and Vitani are watching Upelelezi and Speckles, so she's probably with her. Lets go."
Simba and Nala got up, and hurried out of the den. They walked around Pride Rock, until they found the three lionesses in Scar's old 'room'. Upelelezi and Speckles were chasing each other, and nipping at their tails.
"Hey, Simba," said Vitani, glancing up for a moment.
Spotty nodded at them in greeting.
"Hi. Kiara, can we talk to you," asked Simba, "alone?"
"Um, alright," replied Kiara, with a frown.
She got up, and stepped carefully over the laughing cubs. The three lions walked down Pride Rock.
"What's the problem?" Kiara asked.
"I heard Kovu talking to four hyenas, earlier," said Simba, "He wants to let them live in the Pridelands."
Kiara gritted her teeth.
"He said you want them to live here to. But you don't, right Kiara?"
"Siimba..." Nala hissed.
"Dad," said Kiara, "You don't understand. Kizazi is friends with a hyena cub, and we want them to stay friends, because she makes him so happy. We're going to let the hyenas back into the Pridelands after we negotiate a few things."
"But Kiara," Simba said, trying to stay calm, "you've known sense you were a cub what the hyenas did. They're murderous, slobbering, stupid monsters, and on top of that they helped Scar!"
"But Daddy, that was a really long time ago. And the ones who... you know... they were a differant clan. And these hyenas, they killed Scar in the end-"
"Which proves that they'll kill anyone."
"No it doesn't. They wouldn't have killed him if he hadn't betrayed them. We just won't betray them. And Kizazi said that the hyena cub he met was really nice. What if the rest of the hyenas are really nice?"
"You know," said Nala, "she has a point. It was a long time ago."
"And, Dad, we thought the Outlanders couldn't change, but they did. It's gonna be the same thing."
"You don't know that," Simba growled, trying to stop his tail from swishing.
"But Kovu might. He should be back any minute now."
They sat in silence for a short while, waiting. Soon enough, Kiara spotted Kovu trotting in their direction.
"Kovu!" she called to him.
"I'm coming!" he replied.
Kovu hurried up to the other lions. Upon seeing Simba, he, unintentually, arched his back.
"Stop that," Kiara snarled, smacking Kovu's leg.
Kovu realized what he was doing, and sat down, but kept his claws out, just in case.
"How did it go?" Kiara asked, ignoring her parents.
"Well," he replied, glancing at Simba, "It was going very well... for a while... They've agreed to help defend the pride from rivals and that sort of thing, and I think they're okay with just scavenging, and not hunting. But at that point I was... interupted, and they said that once we calm Simba down, they'll talk to me again."
"Calm me down?" grumbled Simba.
"Yes, calm you down. You jumped between us, and roared at them! They hid from me, they thought I planned this! They were sure I wanted you there, so you could kill them!"
Simba stood up, and was about to roar, when Nala put her paw on his chest.
"Simba, you will not attack Kovu, you will let him talk!"
Taken aback, Simba sat down again.
"Kovu," he said, "I think this is a very bad idea. The hyenas are uncontrollable-"
"-and they're murderous, evil animals! Scar thought he was incontrol of them, but he wasn't and they killed him, and it will be exactly the same. All they care about is killing and eating, and nothing else. And you know the lionesses won't like this."
"They won't like it at first, but once the hyenas have lived here for a while, they'll realize there is no reason for them not to be here. Don't you remember Asante?"
Simba looked away.
"Please, Kovu," he said, coldly.
"Kiara told me about her. She was friendly, and helpful, and she was Kopa's best friend."
"And Fisi's daughter!" he screamed, "The reason why Fisi tried to overthrow me! The reason why Kopa was..."
"Kovu," Kiara whispered to him, urgently, "you shouldn't have mentioned that. I told you my twin brother was murdered in cold blood by a hyena clan."
"I'm so sorry, I forgot how it happened," he whispered, "So Mufasa's death isn't the only reason."
"Nope. And I think you just made this ten times worse."
"Simba," Kovu said, his voice back to normal, "I'm really, really sorry, I should never have brought up-"
"Forget it," Simba interupted, his voice cold as ice, "Let them in. I won't say anything about it to either of you, ever again. But first, talk to the lionesses, see what they think about it. I'll keep out of your way."
Simba walked slowly and silently back to Pride Rock. Nala looked at Kiara, and followed after Simba.
"We should talk to the lionesses," said Kiara.
"If they hate the idea too much, should we even bother with the hyenas anymore, just so Kizazi can have another friend?" asked Kovu
"I think we should. They really could be helpful to the Pridelands."
"Alright, whatever you say. Should we go tell the lionesses now?"
"No point in waiting any longer."
The two walked boldy back to Pride Rock.