Storytelling Competition - (click for the map) | (printer friendly version)
If you have any questions about the competition then read our awesome FAQ!
||You are on Week 232
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 Thirty-Two Ends June 23rd
"Those fools. Mock me, will they? They'll soon learn that they picked the wrong Tuskaninny to mess with. So I may not be as beautiful as a faerie Usul or a Maraquan Draik, but I -- oh yes, I have other talents..." This rambling continued as Thomas laboured long into the night, twisting bolts with his wrench and using his blowtorch to weld. Too long had he suffered from the mocking of his peers; too long had he been called a "geek" or a "nerd" and judged by his appearance; starting tomorrow, that would all change...
* * * * *
"What flavour ice-cream do you want, sis?" the red Shoryu, whose name was Albert, asked his sister. He turned around when he didn't receive a response. "Kasie?"
"What do you suppose that is, Albert?" the pink Shoyru asked, pointing into the distance. There seemed to be quite a commotion coming from down the street...
Author: Insert Humourous Name Here|
Date: 17th June
...As the two pets moved closer to the forming crowd, they could hear three sounds most clearly: growing murmurings, several laughing catcalls, and a heavy clanking like a hundred tin cans all moving together at once. Which, as Albert saw when he managed to worm his way through the group, was pretty close to the truth.
It was definitely something robotic, he decided. There were heavy joints that squeaked, and springs sproinging from odd angles. A few lights spun from the top on a whirligig and something that looked distinctly like an electric can-opener towards the front.
"Hey sis, come and look at this!" he called to Kasie. She pushed through a crowd of giggling Poogles to join her brother.
"Wow! I wonder who that is!" she exclaimed, open-mouthed at the metallic miracle still steadfastly plodding down the road.
"Who?" asked Albert incredulously. "Don't you mean WHAT?" He couldn't see anything Neopet or faerie-like about the thing.
"Well, yeah," said Kasie. "I bet it's a custom-- "
A sudden hush fell over the watching crowd as a large cloud of white steam began to hiss from a badly hammered soup-pot on the top. The whirligig spun faster, and the lights started changing colors, while the top of the enormous soup-pot turned back on its hinges, revealing a whiskered shape rising through the steam, thick goggles glinting in the lights of the whirligig...
Date: 20th June
..."Behold," spoke the figure with a certain level of profoundness. "My greatest invention yet: the EmoBot 3000!"
There was momentary silence... followed by a few Moaches chirping. It was clear that the audience wasn't thoroughly impressed.
"Well, if it isn't Tinkering-Thomas and another lame-brain invention," sneered an obnoxious Grarrl, breaking the quiet. "What's this supposed to be? A walking garbage bin?!?"
A few murmurs of laughter erupted from the crowd, while others still appeared to be genuinely interested in the contraption. Thomas, however, looked confident and fully ready to defy the Grarrl.
"It may not look impressive now, but you won't be so obnoxious when you see it in action. May I have a volunteer, please? Perhaps the pink Shoyru over there?"
Kasie gulped, glancing sideways at her brother. Albert nodded slowly, adding quietly, "Just be careful, and don't let him force you to do anything that you don't want to do!"
That being said, the pink Shoyru stepped beside the Tuskaninny, who motioned for her to sit inside the machine. Reluctantly, she did as she was told, hopping inside as the lid closed on top of her.
"Now, as I will demonstrate, the EmoBot has the unique ability to--"
There was a loud splat, and the next moment Thomas was completely covered in egg yolk. "Hahahaha! You are such a geek!" the Grarrl chortled, hurling another round of eggs at him. A couple of other bullies joined in on the fun, while the bystanders merely looked on, too timid to challenge their power.
"Hey, wait a second now..." Albert tried desperately, feeling sympathetic. Nevertheless, his efforts were in vain, as his voice was drowned out by a sea of laughter.
"I.... I've had just about enough of this," Thomas said quietly, holding his head to the ground. "I gave you guys a chance... but you blew it. Now you'll pay..."
Suddenly, the machine whirred to life, clanking and screeching as its hand curled into a tight fist. Horrified, Kasie could only watch as the EmoBot began to move on its own, gauges going haywire and meters becoming completely red. A large amount of steam puffed from the piston, and the next moment, the EmoBot charged forward, punching the Grarrl square in the stomach.
The crowd fell silent as he dropped down, gasping in pain. However, the madness didn't end there...
Date: 21st June
...Kasie struggled valiantly to free herself from the machine, but the lid was shut tight above her. From the dim stuffiness within, she could peer out through a row of slits at the havoc her prison wrought upon her neighbors.
She watched helplessly as the leg of the machine lashed outward, kicking aside the Grarrl, who rolled a few feet and lay still, groaning. Then the arm swung around and slammed hard into one of his friends, a Skeith, who had jumped forward in anger at what had happened to the Grarrl.
"No!" Kasie cried from inside, and began pummeling the stubborn metal in front of her, searching desperately for a way to override the Tuskaninny's control. There was nothing, though; only a blank sheet of iron.
Outside, the Neopets froze, afraid to move or speak. No one moved to help the sassy Grarrl or his friend -- they knew that anyone who did would share their fate.
"Silence," said Thomas, smirking. "Much better. Not so cocky now, are you? Not so eager to make fun of me, now that my true genius is revealed?"
The crowd eyed him fearfully, afraid to show even a glimmer of dissent in their expressions. Most kept their faces carefully blank, or looked down, and a little Kacheek in the front was crying.
Kasie continued to run her paws over the inside, desperately trying to find a way to get out. She hated the monstrous pile of metal for the control it gave Thomas, and each moment she spent trapped within it was unbearable.
Thomas' smirk widened as he glanced back to his creation. "You are all much preferable this way. To make sure we keep our new relationship, I am going to hold the little Shoyru within EmoBot to dissuade any -- rebellions."
"No!" screamed Albert, losing all caution. "You can't do that! She's my sister!"
"Albert, don't!" sobbed Kasie. But it was too late: even as she spoke, the machine began its way toward her brother...
Date: 21st June
“...Your sister, eh?” Thomas glared, a devilish grin on his sweat-covered face as his mechanized bucket of bolts stumbled towards the red Shoyru. “Then perhaps you’d be the perfect subject to test my beautiful EmoBot’s abilities.”
The sight of the lumbering metal fiend and its Tuskaninny controller’s sinister face temporarily quelled Albert’s brazenness, a shiver of fear racing up his spine. Then his sister’s scream for help wiped away his trepidation... to be replaced with cold anger.
“I have no wish to be your lab rat, Thomas Whoever-you-are!” Albert shouted unwaveringly, trying to stay brave for his sister and not to think about how that monstrosity could squish him with one step. “Let my sister go this minute!”
The EmoBot stopped abruptly with a host of screeching and squealing metallic sounds, Thomas’ face livid with righteous anger. A gout of steam erupted just behind the demented Tuskaninny as he took in a deep breath and let loose a stream of abuse.
“Whoever-you-are?!?” he screamed, thumping two fists against the pitted iron. Albert could hear his sister’s muffled whimper from within the machine’s belly. “I am Master Thomas McNeil, you ignorant fool! You half-wit! You blubbering--”
Albert didn’t wait to hear what the crazed Tuskaninny thought about him. Instead he used Thomas’ narrative to launch himself in a short controlled flight at the metal grating where he had last seen a flash of pink. Albert had done braver things, but at that moment he suddenly realized that this was far more foolish than it was brave.
Metal is, of course, as hard as a rock.
Kasie heard her brother slam against the outside of her metal cage with a dull thud that rang in her ears as it reverberated within the confined space. She groaned along with him, almost feeling his pain.
Then she began to panic when she heard Thomas’ outraged cry from above and the creaking of the machine as it shuddered to life. She could almost see Thomas flicking his flippers over the myriad of levers and buttons to raise the EmoBot’s huge, crushing arms to strike at her brother. Her eyes watered, more from brother’s distress than the rising steam permeating her cell, the feeling of helplessness washing over her.
Then she felt a long loose pipe next to her...
Date: 22nd June
...Eyes widening in surprise, Kasie slid her two paws around the grey, corroded pipe and tugged on it slightly, curious to see what the result would be. The pipe abruptly emitted an ear-splitting creaking noise, yet this was the best sound that the trapped pink Shoyru could hear. She continued to pull on it with all of her strength, while outside, Albert was flapping his wins vigorously around Thomas.
“Trying to defeat little ol’ Thomas, eh?” growled the Tuskaninny, flashing of set of sharp, white teeth. “It’s time to show all of you who the real boss is!”
Albert felt his throat closing up as a massive pair of mechanical claws swiftly slid out of the EmoBot’s side. He attempted to dodge the robotic attackers, but he was no match compared to them. The right claw slammed into Albert’s ribs, causing his wings to stop fluttering. His body hastily fell to the ground, causing more injury to the already-hurt Shoyru.
“Someone… help,” Albert groaned bleakly, sliding his arms around his side. “Please.”
No one in the crowd helped him, though. Everyone simply stood still, petrified as the Shoyru continually called out for help.
Thomas laughed, a distant cold sound. “See, no one cares about you,” he spat, his eyes emitting a piercing glow. “Just like they didn't care about me. Now no one dares to disobey my commands.”
Meanwhile, inside the EmoBot, Kasie could feel the pipe becoming looser as she heaved on it for what felt like twentieth time.
“Silly Tuskaninny didn’t even fix up his machine properly,” she hissed under her breath. Her brow was furrowed into an expression of anger, for she knew the vengeful Tuskaninny was hurting her brother outside.
Suddenly, the pipe slid out with a soft clank against the interior metal. Kasie cocked her head up and gasped. The loose pipe had caused a gaping hole to appear in the entrance lid. Sunlight was streaming through the small space, dancing vivaciously on the Shoryu’s body. But she knew better to think that this was all over...
Date: 22nd June
...With a determined cry, Kasie mustered all of her strength -- and courage -- and burst from the hole, wings flapping powerfully. Her eyes burned with fury, and in a burst of rage she soared like a bullet towards the unsuspecting Tuskaninny.
Thomas had only two seconds before the furious storm of pink had overtaken him. Kasie slammed into his stomach headfirst with the force of an enraged racing Poogle. Perhaps if Thomas had worked out more, his stature would have been more firm. But as it was, he hadn't exercised in quite a long time, and with a groan the Tuskaninny clutched his pudgy stomach and toppled from the EmoBot, dropping the controls.
Like lightning Kasie snatched the controls, but upon looking down upon them realized she could identify nothing. Everything was just a different colored button in a different shape or quality; it was impossible to determine which button meant which function...
Except for one button. A bright red button that said, "Cease Functioning."
In other words, it was the "off" button.
Kasie reached a finger down to press the button.
"NO!" shouted Thomas, leaping with a ferocious gleam in his eyes onto the pinnacle of the dormant EmoBot. "You won't ruin my plans!" Just as quickly as she had, the Tuskaninny attacked the pink Shoyru in a half-tackle, half-punch.
Kasie flew to the ground, her hand still firmly on the controls. Thomas did his best to wrest them from her fingers, but could not. "Get... off... of me!" she shouted, kicking him away. She stood up shakily and was just about to press the button... when Thomas grabbed her leg.
Kasie flew to the floor; the controls flew from her grasp. Everything seemed to move in slow motion. Thomas was shouting angrily; the controls were soaring through the air. For a moment the sun's rays shone brilliantly upon them, in glinting silver light.
The controls then met the street below, and crashed into a million pieces...
Date: 23rd June
...Everyone looked in silence at the remains of the EmoBot's controls, the shards scattered all across the asphalt. Then all eyes turned to the EmoBot, which stood slumped and motionless, not emitting so much as a squeak.
"Look what you did!" the Tuskaninny inventor bellowed at the little Shoyru.
Realization of what had just occurred finally grasped Kasie. She swooped into the air, the thrill of victory gleaming in her eyes. "Haha! Great idea, Thomas!" she taunted.
She ignored his angry scowl when her ears caught a groan of pain.
"Albert!" cried the Shoyru. She floated back down to earth, beside her prostrate brother. The red Shoyru's eyes fluttered open, and he vaguely recognized the hazy pink blur before him.
"Hey, Kasie." He smiled weakly, but immediately grimaced at the pain it inflicted upon his cut lip.
"Oh, Albert, we've got to get you to the hospital, right away. But don't you worry, that EmoBot's gone kaput!" Kasie giggled.
She was interrupted by Thomas. "You little, rosy imbecile!" he bellowed. "Do you realize what you've done?!?"
Kasie arched an eyebrow in satisfaction. "Defeated your piddly robot and saved everyone from it and you?"
"NO! Now that the controls are no longer functionable--" Kasie snorted at the understatement "--I cannot control the EmoBot."
"Well, duh," the pink Shoyru said, rolling her eyes.
"You dotard! It's only the controls that are broken, not the EmoBot! It will be like a loose cannon now, so to speak. It will wreak havoc on whomever or whatever is in its way!"
Kasie stared, open-mouthed.
"And you call me the idiot! What were you thinking, inventing it in that way?"
Albert's eyes widened suddenly from his recumbent position as he gazed upon something over his sister's shoulder. "Uh, sis, I don't think now is the time to argue..."
Kasie whirled around and let out a gasp. The gargantuan EmoBot, its spinning whirligig and lights back with a vengeance, towered over her, its metallic surface gleaming in what could only be taken as an evil glint...
Date: 23rd June
...For a moment, it seemed that time itself was holding its breath, waiting for something to happen. Kasie craned her head back to stare at the behemoth that was the EmoBot, frozen.
Then, slowly, the EmoBot lifted its gigantic leg, swung it forward, and placed it mere feet away from the crowd of Neopets. Like a domino effect, the pets closest stumbled blindly back, bumping into the others behind them. As the EmoBot put down its second leg, a collective scream rose as a frightening reality became clear -- it was coming for them.
The swarms of pets took off in a frenzied panic, each pushing and scrambling in a desperate attempt to distance themselves from the EmoBot, which was gaining in momentum. With a sweep of its huge hand the Ice Cream Parlor was reduced to a pile of rubble, bricks and other derbis showering the pets to numerous cries of pain.
It could only be called a mass hysteria.
Kasie hauled her brother to his feet, who clung tightly to her to support himself. "Can you make it?" she asked anxiously, and he nodded, though his face was pale.
Thomas had fled at the first sign of danger, rolls of fat wobbling as he slid on his stomach. Despite the fact that he was panting heavily, he hadn't covered much ground, and the two Shoyrus easily caught up. All three were moving slowly, Kasie because she was tied down with her brother, who was limping. Something seemed to be wrong with his left leg, for hot stabs of pain shot through it when he applied pressure.
Kasie chanced a glance over her shoulder and gasped, nearly dropping Albert. "C'mon!" She said, pulling him into an alley. "We have to get out of the way!"
The EmoBot stomped past them, intent on catching more than the siblings, and both Kasie and ALbert let out a sigh of relief.
"That was close," said a small voice close to them.
Kasie turned around to find herself face to face with Thomas, who quailed under the glare she sent him. "What're you doing here?" she demanded, though Thomas only frowned. "This is all your fault, you know." she informed him.
"You're the one who broke my controls!" he said angrily.
"Huh, didn't matter. It was either it terrorizing us, or you."
The Tuskaninny sniffed indignantly, crossing his fins defiantly. Outside chaos reigned as the EmoBot continued on its destructive course. Several pets had taken shelter as they had, and now the rampage had turned into a deadly game of Hide and Seek.
Kasie spoke the thought that they were all thinking. "We've got to do something."
Thomas's brow furrowed as he watched his creation. While he often acted irrationally and had a short temper, one of his redeeming features would possibly be the fact that he could think on his feet. One only had to observe the Tuskaninny, and it would be quite obvious that an idea was hatching...
Date: 24th June
..."It's still responding to emotions," Thomas said, still thinking furiously. "Only now it's not to mine... it's to the fear and anger of everyone in the vicinity."
"Yeah, and you're probably happy about it," Albert muttered, the pain from his leg and lip making him irritable.
"How can you say such a thing!" Thomas snapped. "How dare you?"
"How dare I?" Albert repeated incredulously. "It's obvious! You made that awful thing for the purpose of wreaking havoc. I didn't like seeing the way they treated you, but I stopped feeling sorry for you when you started using the EmoBot!"
"That's right!" Thomas shouted. "Do you think I wanted your pity? Until your sister BROKE it, it was getting me the respect I've always deserved!"
"No it wasn't!" Albert bellowed right back at the Tuskaninny. "Fear isn't respect! And I stopped feeling sorry for you because you showed me you were just as bad!"
Thomas stopped, mouth open, and seemed to shrink down.
"Um, guys?" Kasie said. "I know we're all upset, but that thing is still on a rampage. So they were stupid and mean and didn't think... they don't deserve this. And if Thomas IS going to step up and be better than all the petty hit-and-hit-back, this would be a good time. You sounded like you had an idea, Thomas?"
"Er, right," Thomas said. "It's still responding to emotion, so... erm, we should probably calm down... and we need to calm everyone else down."
The two Shoyrus stared at him. "Um... HOW?"
"I don't know! If I could get people to feel the way I wanted them to normally, do you think I'd've started this?" He screwed up his face. "Maybe if we got one very serene person? No, we haven't got time to go looking for anybody.... Hah! I've got it! There's a simple way to amplify the effects of a Dream Orb--" The Tuskaninny wilted suddenly. "But I took apart my last one and used some of the parts for the EmoBot."
Kasie gulped. "Actually," she said, "I've got one."
It was hard to hand over one of her precious Battledome weapons to someone who had just moments before trapped her inside his horrible robot, but Thomas earnestly seemed to want to fix things now. He sat down right there on the ground, and with sounds of clanging and chaos and screams all around, he feverishly began taking apart the Dream Orb. He took out a piece of the dark glass and bent back the dark webbing, letting the soft glow from inside shine more brightly out into the day. With a nervous mutter of, "Not something I'd usually do without insulated tools," he poked his fingers -- more deft than they looked -- into the interior. He removed one item shaped like a pink squash, moved a blue banana-shaped thing into its place, wedged the pink squash back in a different orientation, winced as a purple spark leapt out to zap his nose, and carefully wrapped the whole thing shut again and fit the glass back into place.
It didn't look any different.
"We'll have to start from far away from the EmoBot," said Thomas nervously, "and circle in, or else the first people to be relaxed by the modified Dream Orb will just get trampled. But I can't move that fast, and Albert is hurt...."
"I'm not," said Kasie, "and I'm not just a damsel in distress, you know. Give it to me. Do I still activate it the same way?"
"Yes," said Thomas, handing it over -- and with that, Kasie leapt into the air. She barely heard him shouting after her, "Be careful! The user may no longer be totally immune to its effects!"
"Oh, great," she muttered. But it was still their only chance. Out and around she flew, in a wide arc that carried her toward the farthest reaches of the crowd fleeing the EmoBot. It occurred to her that she'd better be very fast -- the further the panic spread, the harder it would be to calm everyone.
She activated the modified Dream Orb as she reached the outer rim of the panic, and the effect was instantaneous and astounding. Neopets' motions slowed; they stopped and looked around, yawning and puzzled as to what they'd been so afraid of a moment ago. Many lay down to take naps.
Kasie flew onward, making a wide sweep and arcing inward as she learned to gauge how far the range was, and thus where she needed to fly to affect the most people at once.
But it was, indeed, affecting her too. The lassitude began to grip her brain and wings; it touched her arms, and the jolt of frightened adrenaline when she nearly let the Dream Orb fall was the only thing that saved her. But it couldn't last. She was moving more slowly, more and... more....
"Hey," said a startlingly alert-sounding green Pteri, bobbing up in the air beside her. "What are you doing?"
Kasie focused her tired mind and realized that the Pteri, able to dodge the EmoBot more easily than most, must have seen her and flown in from further out to investigate. "Modified Dream Orb," she gasped. "Need to calm everyone down to stop the EmoBot. Can you take it? Circle inward so people don't slow down and get trampled closest to it... give to somebody else if you have to...."
The pink Shoyru sank from the air, but hope rose in her heart as the Pteri seized the Dream Orb and continued her own earlier path. Before too long the Pteri faltered, but an Eyrie took over, then a Buzz, and a Draik, and a Faerie... Tuskaninny. A Poogle got hold of it and ran, amazingly fast on its short legs.
Kasie laughed weakly, but in relief, not mockery. Onward went the Dream Orb, and with every step and wingbeat, the EmoBot slowed down. The Neopets still nearest it were growing more confused than terrified, and that helped too.
At last, nearly all the Neopets in the crowd were relaxed almost to the point of dozing, and the EmoBot just curled up on itself and apparently went to sleep.
Kasie picked herself up and made her way through the napping crowds toward the EmoBot to reclaim her Dream Orb, only to find that Thomas had surprised her again. Huffing and sweating, he heaved himself up and, as the EmoBot gave a last half-hearted lurch, deactivated it entirely. Kasie offered him a tired grin, picked up and deactivated her Dream Orb as it rolled off the Poogle's paw, and headed for her brother.
He met her a quarter of the way there. "Go back," Albert said urgently. "We've got to help!"
"Help with what?" Kasie asked in confusion. Then she looked around and realized what she'd been too tired to notice moments before: the effects of the Dream Orb had ended, and with that, all the Neopets in the crowd had come back to their senses.
There was an ugly, angry mutter rising from them, and Thomas's head, poking up from the remains of the EmoBot, looked very frightened indeed.
"Help me get there," Albert muttered to his sister. "I should've said something in the first place... Help me get into the air."
She did, shouldering him up; the red Shoyru fluttered awkwardly over and landed, his hurt leg nearly collapsing underneath him, right next to Thomas. Kasie joined him and held him up. Thomas stared at them as if they'd both grown Alien Aisha ears.
"Get out of the way!" an Usul with fiercely fluffed-out fur shouted from the crowd.
"He saved you!" Albert yelled back.
"He CAUSED this!"
"That stupid Tuskaninny did this -- we'll show him!"
"You've all shown everybody ENOUGH!" Albert yelled. There was pain in his voice, but it wasn't enoug to keep him quiet, and the surprise of seeing the Shoyru Thomas had fought with earlier speak up for him was enough to quiet the crowd for a moment. "Thomas shouldn't have made this and tried to make everybody fear him. He shouldn't have attacked anybody. But you shouldn't have been picking on him in the first place! Calling names, throwing things -- you ought to be ashamed of yourselves! I know I'm ashamed I didn't speak up sooner. And louder." Albert took a deep breath. "Thomas caused the problem -- but he's fixed it, too."
"He learned his lesson," Kasie challenged them, supporting her brother. "Have you?"
Nobody answered. But quietly, from the edges outward, the crowd dispersed.
Eventually, Kasie and Albert both sank down on the EmoBot with a sigh and looked at Thomas, who had been staring at them in awe. He lowered his eyes and mumbled, "Thanks... thank you. I'm sorry."
"You're not so bad when you lose the mad scientist act," Kasie said. "Think you can help me get my brother to the Hospital?"
"Sure," Thomas stammered quickly. "I, I'll do that. Least I can do...."
"And maybe," Albert continued shakily, "when they get it rebuilt, we can get that ice cream together...."
"I bet I could build something to repair it faster, if they'll let me."
"You could market gizmos like that, you know," they told him.
Thomas blushed behind his goggles. "Maybe when I didn't cause the problem in the first place..."
...It turned out forgiveness made for a surprisingly good friendship.
Date: 24th June
IMPORTANT - SUBMISSION POLICY! By
uploading or otherwise submitting any materials to Neopets, you (and your parents) are
automatically granting us permission to use those materials for free in any manner we can think
of forever throughout the universe. These materials must be created ONLY by the person
submitting them - you cannot submit someone else's work. Also, if you're under age 18, ALWAYS
check with your parents before you submit anything to us!