Storytelling Competition - (click for the map) | (printer friendly version)
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||You are on Week 227
Every week we will be starting a new Story Telling competition - with great prizes! The current prize is 2000 NP, plus a rare item!!! This is how it works...
We start a story and you have to write the next few paragraphs. We will select the best submissions every day and put it on the site, and then you have to write the next one, all the way until the story finishes. Got it? Well, submit your paragraphs below!
Story Two Hundred and Twenty-Seven Ends May 20th
It just wasn't working. As much as they yowled and hissed at the sealed can upon the kitchen counter, it just wasn't opening. Snuffy's stomach growled, and the Kadoatie jumped from the counter to the floor, then made her way to the Neohome’s door. One of the many other Petpets, an Angelpuss named Sparkles, followed her. Together, amidst the cries of the many Kadoaties, Angelpi, Mewclops, and Kookiths, they waited... and waited.
Their owner, a kindly old Krawk, had left three days ago and still hadn't returned. Distressed by their abandonment, and tormented by an empty stomach, Snuffy scratched at the door. Her claws raked the wood, and chips of paint showered the floor, but it was to no avail. Sparkles came up beside Snuffy, and the Angelpuss dug her claws into the lower corner of the door and scratched. The Kadoatie jumped back in surprise as the door creaked ever so slightly. Taking Sparkle's lead, Snuffy also began to pull at the corner of the door with her claws. The other feline Petpets crowded around in amazement as the great door moved more and more. A well-placed claw (combined with a fortunate gust of wind) caused the door fly open, nearly colliding with Snuffy, who had darted out of the way at the last moment.
The other Petpets watched Snuffy as she peeked out over the threshold toward the outside world. Most had lived in this house their entire lives, and had no idea what awaited them. However, they’d been faced with the choice of either venturing out or starving. Nervous, yet resolute, Snuffy (followed by the others) made her way out of the Neohome; and so, their adventure began...
Date: 15th May
…with the arrival of another breeze. It blew old copies of The Neopian Times around on the sidewalk, and plastered one to Snuffy's face. Her yowls of discontent and blindness echoed along the sidewalk as she scrabbled to get a hold on the paper. Her claws finally caught, and she pulled it away.
Sparkles caught the Times as it was about to blow away again, possibly to catch itself on other unfortunate Petpets' faces, and held it against the sidewalk with her paw. A picture caught the Angelpuss's eye, and she stared, her hunger momentarily forgotten.
"Meow!" she exclaimed, and the other Petpets gathered around, Snuffy poking her head over Sparkles's shoulder to peer at the picture. Sure enough, it was a picture of the old Krawk they knew so well, in a place of gleaming metal and intriguing lights.
Snuffy pawed at the paper, trying to decipher the squiggles and lines next to the picture, but they were incomprehensible. "Mrr," she said definitively, and the other Petpets chimed in with mews of agreement. They would have to find someone to read it for them so they could rescue the Krawk. Snuffy and the others were sure that she needed rescuing, for why else would she have abandoned them? The Kadoatie helped Sparkles roll up the paper, and a Meowclops by the name of Fluffy was elected to carry it in her mouth until they found someone to read it.
With that, they set off...
Date: 16th May
...At first the Petpets had little luck on their journey. They of course were small, so most of the Neopets they ran into didn't even see them. The other ones that did in fact notice them couldn't exactly understand Kadoatie, Angelpuss, Meowclops, or even Kookith language, so they would leave them with little more than maybe a pat on the head.
After quite a while, the Petpets began to get very upset. They were horribly worried that their beloved owner was in trouble, but on the other paw, what if they were just wasting their time? Also, why couldn't any of these Neopets understand them? Weren't they being clear enough? On top of all that, they weren't getting any less hungry.
Some of the Petpets began to complain amongst themselves, wondering if they should keep looking for a kind soul to read them the paper, or find something to eat first. After all, it's hard to work on an empty stomach. Soon, Snuffy spoke up.
"Prr, mif mrr prrow!" she said, once again convincing her companions to continue their search. She told the hungry ones to think of all the food they would get when the Krawk came back, and she meowed that even if they were wasting their time, they should still look, in case they weren't. Eventually all the Petpets agreed to keep looking for someone who could read.
They turned to begin walking once again and narrowly missed running straight into the leg of a split Acara. She looked down at them.
"Oh, hi there!" she greeted, "Aren't you all just adorable?"
Fluffy smiled, walking up to the front. She rubbed up against the Acara's leg and dropped the newspaper in front her, before looking up and meowing...
Date: 17th May
..."A newspaper?" asked the Acara, puzzled. "You want me to have it?"
Snuffy placed a firm paw on the front page. "Mrrow," she explained, and tilted up her head expectantly.
The Acara still seemed a bit confused, though Snuffy couldn't fathom why; she had quite clearly directed her to read the headlined article.
She seemed to get the gist, though, as she picked up the page. "Robbery at the National Neopian." Glancing down at the imploring eyes of the Kadoatie at her feet, the Acara continued to read the rest of the article:
"Security guards at the National Neopian reported a break-in during the early hours of the night. The thief stole over 500,000 NP during the robbery, but the security cameras caught a clear picture of the suspect's face. Miss Karen Krawk was arrested at her home the following morning and is imprisoned until her trial."
The Petpets looked at one another, meowing in astonishment. Their owner would never do something like that, would she?
"Sounds pretty serious," added the Acara, handing the folded paper back to Snuffy. "You lot aren't in any kind of trouble either, are you?"
Snuffy did not answer. Throwing a meaningful look to the herd of Petpets behind her, she led the way to the scene of the crime -- the National Neopian...
Date: 17th May
...The Acara, whose name was Darcy, began to follow the small band of Petpets, curious as to their destination. While there was nothing unusual about seeing a Petpet out without its owner every now and then, an entire herd of the small creatures wandering through Neopia was a different matter. Besides, Darcy considered herself something of an amatuer sleuth -- and a mystery was exactly what she had been looking for.
Soon, she found herself standing before the Nation Neopian with the small band of Petpets. While, she wasn't particulary surprised, she was intrigued. Obviously, their journey had something to do with that Neopian Times article, but she still was unsure of what.
Darcy had been near the police station (always alert for a new mystery) when Karen Krawk had been brought in. She now remembered the Krawk saying something about how someone needed to feed her Petpets. No doubt, these were the Petpets that Karen had been speaking of, and Darcy immediately felt sorry for Snuffy and her companions. From what she heard, the Neopian Police had a fairly strong case against Miss Karen Krawk.
Suddenly, Snuffy let out a loud meow that sounded like a siren and all the Petpets charged straight for the National Neopian. The guards were caught off guard by the sudden Petpet assault and spent the next several minutes trying to catch Snuffy and her friends. However, not a single Petpet was caught, and Darcy found herself laughing aloud as the guards tripped and slammed into each other in the chase.
After a few minutes, Snuffy meowed again and all the Petpets returned to the area where Darcy was still waiting. "That was really funny," the Acara said, "but that's not how you go about finding clues if you think your owner is innocent."
Just then, Darcy realized she might have spoken too soon when she noticed the strange item dangling from Snuffy's mouth...
Date: 18th May
..."What have you got there?" the Acara asked curiously. She gently took the gleaming object from Snuffy, who was evidently quite proud of herself, and scrutinized it closely. It was a pocket watch made from imitation gold. Darcy saw that the glass face of the watch had cracked from the sharp impact of something, causing the hands to stop at a precise time.
"1:06. Hmmm. Do you think this could have anything to do with the robbery?" Darcy questioned the band of Petpets.
The feline creatures looked at each other in the hopes that one of them would come up with a brilliant idea. Suddenly, Sparkles the Angelpuss leaped up.
"Mreeeow!" the Petpet exclaimed, which roughly translated into "Eureka!"
Darcy smiled at the Angelpuss's excitement. "What is it, girl?"
Sparkles began to rush off into a babble of meows, but Darcy, not surprisingly, could not make heads or tails of it. "Erm," the split Acara said as she watched the Angelpuss make rapid gestures, "you want to find a Koi to help you sneak into a clock shop?"
Sparkles slapped a paw to her forehead. Yeesh, this Neopet wasn't the sharpest knife in the drawer, was she? However, Sparkles's cohorts knew exactly what she was trying to communicate so they leaped up and down with her. Snuffy, who was feeling left out, gave a loud meow. Like a shot, the whole group, with Darcy coming after them, dashed out into the streets and headed straight for...
Date: 18th May
...the clock shop.
Tucked in a little alleyway where no one would find it unless they knew what they were looking for, the small clock shop was more of an antique store, as clocks were only its main stock. It had everything from clay pots covered with gilt to craft kits and small decorated toys.
The Petpets rushed straight up to the counter, a panting Darcy running in behind them.
"Mrrow!" Snuffy said, catching on to what her friends were onto. For a change, the Acara seemed to understand, or at least figure out, what the Kadoatie meant.
She walked up to the counter, and the shop owner, summoned by the sound of customers entering the shop, came out from the back.
"And what can I do for you?" the starry Gelert said, taking off the glasses he was using to inspect a flawed ruby in a ring.
"I was wondering if you could tell me who bought this watch," Darcy told him, showing him the small pocket watch.
"Ah, I remember. A Mynci bought this about three days ago. Remember he was carrying a briefcase, but he dropped it on the counter, and it opened a little. Looked like he had equipment to renovate his window frames!" The shopkeeper began to laugh.
Darcy thanked him and looked down at the Petpets, who seemed to be conferring amongst themselves...
Suddenly, as one, the small crowd ran out the open door, and Darcy resignedly followed.
"Have a nice day!" the shopkeeper said, putting his glasses back on and walking back into the back room with the ring.
Date: 19th May
...Darcy sped down the path after the fleeing Petpets. They were chattering wildly amongst each other now; some mewed, some hissed, some yowled, and some growled. It was a great calamity of excited voices, and Darcy couldn't help but be excited herself. Where are they going? she thought, but the answer didn't seem to show itself until halfway down the block.
The furniture shop was at the end of the street. Its wooden doors were open as mutant Grundos shuffled inside, hefting large sofas and other pieces of furniture. Inside, a green Eyrie ordered them where to place these items and then sent them out to fetch more.
The Kadoaties, Kookiths, Meowclopses, and Angelpi darted up the steps, hushing themselves, and Darcy, perplexed, followed them inside. The room smelled of wet paint, sawdust, and other materials she couldn't identify. The shopkeeper stared at them from behind thin spectacles.
"Yes?" he asked expectantly.
"Mif prr mraow!" Snuffy mewed excitedly; Darcy had no idea what the bouncing Kadoatie was trying to say. The Eyrie looked even more baffled.
"Um, quite a nice bunch of Petpets you've got there," he murmured, then looked at Darcy straight in the eye. "What can I do for you?"
Snuffy glanced sharply up at her, then stared at the broken pocket watch. Sparkles had carried it from the antique shop without much difficulty, and was now lifting it up for Darcy to see better. She snatched it up, noticing an engraving on the outside rim she had not seen before.
In carved words it read, "Neopia Central Furnishing Co., Windows Division." It all made sense!
"Well, do you need help?" The Eyrie stared at her impatiently.
"Yes, er... do you know where I could find the Windows Division? I need to speak to the head of--"
"Right down that hallway, and up the stairs to your left," the Eyrie shouted above the roar of a saw. Darcy thanked him and hurried, along with the band of felines below her, down the hallway.
Heading up the stairs swiftly, air rushing around her, Darcy followed the now exhilirated Petpets into a small office area; three cubicles remained motionless as they walked -- no, ran -- into the room. Apparently it was an off day.
Darcy was about to give up when she saw a light coming from a closed office at the end of the room. Curious, she and the petpets, led by Snuffy, approached the door. She stared down at Snuffy, who was pawing at the door frantically. The pocket watch gleamed in Sparkles's paws.
She stared at the door. Would she find the Mynci who'd lost the watch? Would he supply answers? Without another thought, she rapped her knuckles on the door.
There was a sudden commotion in the office; she heard the noise of papers rustling and below her, the Petpets gasped in shock. The door swung open and Darcy looked inside to see...
Date: 19th May
...a Darigan Mynci in a trenchcoat, fighting an orange Mynci. The orange Mynci was struggling hard to escape, his eyes filled with fear.
The Darigan Mynci's eyes darted around the room. "You're not a copper, are ya?" he asked.
"Ummm..." Dracy was breathless. What in the world was going on?
The Darigan Mynci pulled out a Rainbow Gun before she could answer. "Ah, it doesn't matter! Listen gal, you and your Petpets better not make another move, or you're faerie toast!"
The Acara was shocked to say the least, but did as she was told. She closed her eyes and fervently hoped that the Petpets would do the same.
Snuffy, on the other hand, had other ideas. She pointed her tail at the evil Mynci and ordered, "Merrrrrrrrrrow!"
In seconds, the Mynci was covered in scratching, hissing, yeowling Petpets, and he let go of the poor orange Mynci, who hit the ground running. Darcy could see that the mob of feline Petpets had the dark Mynci covered, so she chased after the other one.
She followed him down the hallway, down the stairs, through the main portion of the building, and out the door.
"Hey!" called the green Eyrie, "Hey Mack, you're not off the clock yet!"
The orange Mynci ignored his boss and ran in the direction of the marketplace. He seemed like a seasoned sprinter as he pulled far ahead the Acara sleuth.
Suddenly, Dacry found herself lost in a maze of owner shops and no orange Mynci. She tread carefully on the deserted path and looked down one way, then down the other.
"Need any help finding something?"
Darcy jumped at the voice at her knees. It was a Jubjub, dressed in a wizard's outfit two sizes too big.
"It's not really a something per say, it's a someone..."
The Jubjub jumpped up and down. "Oh! I can do that too!"
"Ummm... an orange Mynci?"
"There are 56,633 orange Myncis in Neopia."
Dracy racked her brain for another way to explain to the Jubjub. "Uh, his name is Mack and he's around here?"
The Jubjub thought for a moment. "Go down a block, take a right, and he's hiding in an alley next to a shop called Odds and Ends."
The Acara took off in the specified direction after giving the Jubjub a hurried thank-you.
The alleyway was empty when she reached it, but she was positive the Mynci was there. "Mack? Come out! I have to talk to you!"
"Listen, I'm not sure why you and that other Mynci were fighting, but I'll have you know I'm not an undercover cop or something like that. I just want to know what went down at the National Neopian, and why a poor old Krawk has been blamed for the theft. I want to help her, and I want to help you!"
There was another pause. Darcy was about to speak again when she heard a rustle.
Tentatively, the Mynci stepped out from behind a box of broken plushies...
Date: 20th May
...clutching a small brown briefcase in his right paw. Darcy took one glance at it, then stared up into the shaking eyes of the orange Mynci that stood before her. He was staring at something behind her. Wordlessly Darcy spun to see what he was staring at.
It was the National Neopian.
Darcy turned back to Mack, who was trembling. She reached a hand into the pocket of her jeans, turning on the power button.
"I don't know why I did it," he began. "I wasn't making much money, and I was going through tough times. My family's so poor, y'know..." He paused for a moment. "Jix said he'd split it with me, fifty-fifty. I was stupid and believed him. He coaxed me into it... I was in the vault, I'd taken half a million in Neopoints, when suddenly I saw that old lady. She was there, just like Jix'd said she'd be. I handed her the counterfeit moneybag and ran. She didn't know what hit her. Before I knew it, the cops had got to her."
Darcy stared long and hard into his eyes. Hidden behind doubt and struggle were flickers of goodness and truth; he wasn't lying. "Who is Jix?" she asked.
"The head of the Windows Division," he replied automatically. "I'm just a grunt compared to him. He's rotten to the core. He's--"
"He's the Darigan Mynci, I presume," Darcy said, nodding. "He got you into stealing the money?"
"Yes," Mack replied. "When I gave him the briefcase, he didn't give me any of it... I asked for some; we got into a fight... Oh, now I wish I just hadn't done it. I regret it wholly." Mack sniffed, staring at his feet.
"C'mon," Darcy said, extending a hand to grasp his. He accepted it.
"Where are you going to take me?"
"You're going to accompany me," Darcy said with a smirk. "C'mon, we don't have much time."
Darcy flew down the alley, Mack running alongside her, his hand still firmly in hers. The robed JubJub was standing right outside Odds and Ends, thankfully. Darcy whirled around to face him.
"Can you contact the police?"
"Can I? Of course!" the JubJub chirped enthusiastically. "Wait just a moment..."
Darcy grinned, sticking a hand back down into her pocket and turning the switch off. "He's in the Furniture Store," she told the JubJub. "The culprit, I mean."
* * * * *
"I swear! I didn't do any of it!" Jix shouted at the top of his lungs as the Chia policemen handcuffed him. "He's a liar! She's a liar! They're all lying--"
"Be quiet," one scoffed, tightening one of the cuffs uncomfortably. "Save it for later. If there is one." The Chia laughed, and the other cops joined in with him.
Thanks to Darcy's quick thinking and experience as an amateur sleuth, she'd turned on her recorder just as Mack began his confession and had gotten the entire conversation. She handed it off to the Chia police, who promptly arrested a solemn, repenting Mack and a fuming Jix.
"They're not going to keep you in for long," Darcy had reasoned with him as the Mynci began to cry.
"Really?" he asked, sniffling.
"Of course, Mack." She had grinned, and Mack stopped crying. He spoke not another word, even as the Chia police carried him off.
The briefcase Mack had been holding was what he had pilfered off of Jix -- the briefcase holding all 500,000 Neopoints. After this realization the Chia police had investigated Karen's "stolen money" and found it to be counterfeit. They promptly released her.
Snuffy, Fluffy, Sparkles, and the rest of the Petpets joyously reunited with their master before heading home for a well-deserved lunch. Darcy was invited by the kindly old woman to attend, but she politely declined.
"I have some business to attend to," Darcy had explained. Karen had smiled at her warmly.
"You're always welcome in this house, young lady. Without you, my precious Petpets would've wasted away, and they're all my life to me." Her eyes had glowed with tears at this comment. Darcy had grinned as Snuffy and the others mewed in an overwhelming chorus of agreement.
And now she was scurrying down the sidewalk, hands in her pockets, towards the building that had been the beginning of her journey: the National Neopian. Hope welled up within her.
She walked briskly into the room, stopped at the desk, and looked at the secretary.
"How may I help you?" the secretary asked.
"I'd like to be a detective..."
Date: 20th May
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