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||You are on Week 236
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-Six Ends July 29th
Angrily stalking the ship's deck, the Kookith gave a furious rant that only his fellow Petpets onboard could understand. "Don't ye dare ignore me, ye filthy excuse for a ship’s captain," the Kookith howled. As far as the captain and his mates could tell, though, the Petpet was merely wailing in a very annoying manner. "For too long have we worked, with not a single coin to show for it. This be yer last warnin'. You’d better give us our proper cut o' the treasure, or else you could find a mutiny on yer hands."
"Arath, why is yer Kookith yowling at us again?" the pirate captain asked, glaring at his first mate.
"Dunno. Maybe he's hungry? Don't see how, though, since I just fed the thing!" Arath waved his hand toward the aggressively meowing Kookith. "Off with ye, or I’ll toss ye overboard!"
The Kookith hissed. "So that be yer final response, eh? Trying to wave me off like some sort of pest? I've given ye enough warnin', but you’ve brought this upon yourselves. ATTACK!"
A hoard of pirate Petpets appeared from the darkness of the ship's hold. Sick of not getting their fair share for crewing, the once-loyal pets had been planning their mutiny for quite some time, under the leadership of their Kookith "captain."
"What the--?!" yelled the captain, as a pile of Petpets leapt onto him and his first mate...
Author: is just getting weirder...|
Date: 21st July
...The captain was soon engulfed by the swarm of Petpets, and he felt sharp claws pummeling into him, as well as sharp teeth.
"What have ye done to them?!?" the captain cried to the first mate. "If ye get out of this alive, yer walkin' the plank!"
By now, the rest of the crew had heard the racket and were rushing to the source of the noise.
One blue Kacheek was the first to reach the struggle, and he stopped in his tracks. The sight was almost comical, but when he saw the captain glaring he knew it was no joke.
"Eh..." the Kacheek murmured, wondering what he should do.
"Ye filthy landlubber!" the captain hollered. "Get in here 'n fight!"
The Kookith turned around, and seeing the Kacheek, let out a hideous wail.
More Petpets emerged from the ship's hold, more and more, mercilessly attacking the barrage of stunned crewmates that were just arriving.
The Kacheek sank beneath the onslaught. He knew that they were hopelessly outnumbered.
The battle was soon at an end, the panting Petpets' eyes sparkling with victory. The pirate crew of Neopets lay before them, bound firmly with ropes.
The Kookith paced before the prisoners, back and forth, back and forth.
"I seem to be liking this 'ere arrangement better already," the Kookith said, flashing a menacing smile. Howls of agreement arose from the Petpets. "Too easy, all too easy."
The pirates stared at the Kookith cluelessly; they had no idea what he was doing. He seemed to be stalking back and forth threateningly, hissing at them.
This has got to be a joke, Arath thought, looking at his Kookith, Patch-eye. But his aching paws, bound tightly behind his back, told him otherwise.
Well, he did know one thing for sure. These Petpets had better not just be hungry...
Date: 25th July
..."Arr, Cap'n Patch-eye, sir!" said Patch-eye's first-mate of the moment, a particularly fierce-looking Angelpuss. "What we be doin' with these good-for-nothin' scally-wags now?" she asked. Patch-eye grinned in a rather ominous way.
"I don't like the look of this, Captain," Arath mumbled. "Them Petpets have gone sea-crazy, they have. There's no telling what they'll do..."
"Forget the blasted Petpets!" the captain snapped angrily. "Me own crew, bested by these wee little pests. When we get out of this, Arath, yeh'll be swimming laps until yer arms fall off!"
"Oh-ho! Did yeh hear that, lads?" Captain Patch-eye said. "'When' they get out! I think they're a might bit confident, don't you, First-Mate Fuzzy?"
"Aye, Cap'n, too confident by a half," Fuzzy agreed.
"Well, there's only one thing for it, then!" Patch-eye declared with rather sadistic glee. "They'll haf to walk the plank!"
"What're they doin' now, Arath?" the blue Kacheek asked, eyeing the Petpets as they immediately became excited and scurried over to the side of the ship.
"I'm not sure..." he replied, but just as he finished speaking, the plank dropped down with a loud "clunk" and the Petpets gave a very definite cheer. "I take it back. I think I've figured it out," Arath muttered, and several members of the crew looked decidedly aghast.
"Yeh wouldn't dare!" the captain growled at Patch-eye, who gave a defiant little chirp and stomped his peg-leg.
"I reckon he would..." Arath said, but then trailed off when his captain glared daggers at him. Instead of finishing, he cleared his throat and turned his attention back to his Petpet. "Now, Patch-eye, old mate, ye wouldn't want to do anythin' too rash..." he began, but the Kookith's reply was to gesture in a rather wild, irrated fashion.
"Of course I'd dare, yeh scurvy-ridden scoundrel!" he growled. "Yeh're a lousy pirate, and yeh make me do all yer work, with no thanks and no share! Don't 'old mate' me! Yeh're all the same!" A chorus of agreement rose up from amidst the Petpets. "And now, yeh'll walk the plank!"
"Walk the plank! Walk the plank!" the other Petpets chorused, and began pushing and shoving the pirates over to the side of the ship...
Date: 26th July
...Arath looked down in astonishment as the little creatures began bullying them overboard. He and the captain jumped back a little, letting some others go first.
"Ahhhh, me own crew!" the captain yowled in rage. "I'll string up that little swab-wallin' dribble dirk meself!"
Patch-eye chuckled and sat back, watching as the screaming pirates were shoved into the water, one by one. The captain glanced back and forth, examining his captors. "We'll be the laughingstock among all pirates, Arath. An' I blame you!"
Patch-eye walked over to where the captain and his old master stood, side by side in front of the plank. "So, ya snivellin' drophauls!" he sniggered. "What be yer plan now? Any last words?"
As the Kookith chirped proudly at them, Arath stared in wonder. It had never occurred to him that Petpets communicated much beyond barks, hisses, and chirps, but he could see clearly now that his Petpet was actually speaking some language to them. Too bad they couldn't understand it.
As the first mate gaped at the small Kookith, strutting back and forth, the captain was displaying his last words.
"Ye lousy lay-about! Ye slobberin' sea-cactus! I'll feed ye to the dark Pteri's on the opposite side o' the world! I'll..."
But he got no farther in his eloquent curses, for two very fat Weewoos gave them both a tremendous shove. The two went careening down the side of the ship, bouncing off of cannon holds until they splashed into the sea.
Spitting out water and gurgling, the captain shook his fist at the passing ship, as his wet and confused pirate crew gathered around him. "I'll get ye, Patch-eye, if it's the last thing I do! Ye'll not escape from this here captain!"
"Er, captain..." Arath said, stopping him and treading water. "Ye won't believe this, but I think those Petpets can talk to each other. I don' understand it!"
The captain eyed the horizon where three dark shapes were swimming towards them. As one, the entire crew began to splash frantically back towards the ship. "Nevermind yer hearin' problems, Arath! We've got bigger problems at the momen'!"...
Date: 26th July
...Despite the fact that many would agree swimming was a necessary skill for a life on the seas, few of the pirates had ever bothered to learn it. Because of this, the crew could be more accurately described as "flailing in a general direction," or, in some cases, "sinking."
As the submerged shadows approached with increasing speed, a desolate wail rose from the pirates, seveal going as far as to cry irrelevant things like, "Where's me mummy?" Their pursuers quickly outstripped them, moving with the grace and practiced ease of something that had spent all its life in the water -- or rather, someone, as was about to become apparent.
Heart leaping into his throat, the captain felt something tap his shoulder and blindly redoubled his efforts in paddling. He foolishly opened his mouth to plead for his life, and managed to do nothing but choke down a large amount of saltwater.
The spluttering captain swiveled around fearfully, to be greeted by the face of a small, blue Flotsam, a bright smile etched in her features.
"Perhaps I'm mistaken," she was saying, either oblivious to the look of bewilderment on the Captain's face or choosing to ignore it, "but I thought pirates were supposed to sail on the seas, not in them?"
This triggered something in the captain's brain, and he whirled around to face his crew. Some, like Arath, had immediately noticed the appearance of the Flotsam, and seemed to be torn between relief and fighting the urge to laugh. Others, not so fortunate, were still struggling, panic-stricken, towards the distant ship.
The captain, naturally, quelled any misbelief of danger in his usual gracious way. "YE FILTHY, YELLA-BELLIED EXCUSES FER GRARRL DUNG, I SHOULD HAVE YE WHIPPED 'TIL YER NOSES BLEED!"
Immediately, all motion caused by the fleeing pirates halted, and one called out stupidly, "Yeh mean we ain't goin' to be eated?"
Tinkling, bell-like laughter sounded behind the captain, and in a light, airy voice, the Flotsam said, "Oh, goodness no! We wouldn't dream of eating you, that would just be uncivilized!"
"Probably wouldn't taste good anyway," murmured another voice darkly, as a Maraquan Uni rose from the ocean without breaking the surface of the water. The Uni was joined by a small Pepito, who lifted its beady, black eyes out of the water and chirruped in agreement.
The Flotsam laughed again, as though it were a joke, but her companion eyed the pirate crew with suspicion and distaste. This was only to be expected, however; the war between Maraqua and the Pirates had only just ended, and wounds were still deep.
"My name's Larisha, and my friend is Meheris," the Flotsam said with a small giggle. "And that," she added, pointing to the small Pepito, "is Bob."
The captain glared at the Petpet and growled, "Yeh'd do best ter get rid'a that'n there, they turn on ye."
"What?" Larisha asked, cocking her head to the side in confusion. "I'm afraid I don't understand."
"Our Petpets took our ship," Arath explained quickly. "Threw us overboard, they did. I think -- I think they were talkin' with each other!"
Meheris looked at the distant ship doubtfully. It hadn't made much progress, rocking back and forth like a bottle on the waves. Arath guessed that simple and mundane tasks that the pirates overlooked, such as unfurling the sail and manning the tiller, had proved to be much more difficult for the tiny Petpets.
"I suppose," the Maraquan Uni said, sliding her eyes down to her Pepito, "that if they really can communicate, Bob could have a word with them..."
Date: 27th July
..."Bob? If you don't mind?"
The little Pepito saluted, and splashed easily off toward the fumbling ship. As he began to make his way up the ropes dangling over the ship's side, Larisha produced several necklaces made of some sort of seaweed. "These will help keep you from drowning in the meantime," she explained, and began draping them over the necks of the pirates.
Arath found, to his amazement, that the splashes of water churning around him no longer choked him: in fact, they seemed hardly to affect him at all. The pirates exchanged impressed glances.
"That's right," laughed the Flotsam, seeing the astonishment on their faces. "The necklaces will let your breathe, even underwater."
Meheris didn't bother to hide a rather skeptical expression, muttering something about "undeserving land creatures." Larisha smiled sweetly and ignored her.
The pirates treaded water as they waited, hoping that somehow the little Pepito could convince their mutinous Petpets that they were in the wrong. Arath made a mental note that, if they decided to give the crew a second chance, he would be a little nicer to his Kookith.
A tiny object came flying over the side of the ship just then, hurling through the air before landing with a loud splash beside them. As it sputtered to the surface, the swimmers saw with dismay that it was Bob.
"So much for your negotiations," muttered Meheris darkly.
"YE TRAITOROUS SCUM!" cried the Captain, waving a fist at the ship. "YE SHIP-STEALIN' SCALLYWAGS!"
"I don't see why they rejected the offer," said Larisha. "It doesn't look as if they'll get far without you."
Arath barely heard them; he was staring, wide-eyed, at the horizon. "Somehow, I think we be havin' greater problems right now," he whispered.
Approaching fast, sails high and billowing in the breeze, guided by the skills of seasoned sailors, came an enemy pirate ship...
Date: 27th July
...Meanwhile, a certain Kookith was rushing around, barking orders, some relevant, some mundane.
"Ye lot, over there, fly up to th' Crokabek Nest an' keep a look out! Arr, is that a slacker I spy with me eye? I don't pay ye to laze around! Make yerself useful an' get me a sandwich!"
The Cobrall slithered away, muttering about not getting paid at all, and wondering how in Neopia he was going to make a sandwich with no arms.
* * * * *
The captain started barking orders, shouting to "Ready th' cannons an' mop up th' deck, ye landlubbers!" It took him a full two minutes to remember that he was in the middle of the ocean, and had no cannons, mops, or decks to mop.
His crew then waited patiently for him to finish his tirade, as he shouted long, strewn-together sentences at his slowly disappearing ship, occasionally with unmentionable words. A couple of Kougras were clutching each other and screaming for dear life. One Kacheek was flailing his arms around, as if shooing the approaching enemy ship away. A Jubjub was frantically trying to carry out the Captain’s earlier orders to “mop the deck,” but quickly found this task increasingly difficult with no mop, deck, or hands, for that matter.
The two Maraquans watched the crew’s antics, Larisha staring with wide eyes. After a little while, she stopped staring and started giggling. Meheris rolled her eyes, with a muttering of “pirates…”
Eventually, the pirates got a grip on themselves and realized that screaming, shouting, and mopping a non-existent deck with a non-existent mop were getting them nowhere, and were not stopping the enemy pirates from approaching, nor getting them their ship back.
The captain boomed, “Arr, listen up, ye lot! We be needin’ ta capture that enemy ship before it captures up! But we be unarmed, and unprepared. The element of surprise won’t be lastin’ the whole battle!”
Arath chose this moment to speak up. “Cap'n, if we be regainin’ control of our ship, we will have all we be needin’ to prepare!”
The Captain nodded. “Arr, but that Kookith of yurs won’t be givin’ up the ship easily!” He then returned to shouting a long stream of insults at the ship of Petpets.
Meheris snapped in a slightly bored tone, “You aren’t going to make those Petpets cooperate with you by screaming abuse at their retreating ship!” All the pirates went silent and turned to her. The Uni rolled her eyes once again. “Okay, I don’t exactly want to help you lot, but you’re so incompetent that I almost feel sorry for you. What you need is a plan. Listen up, because I'm only going to say this once. First, you’ll have to…”
Date: 28th July
..."take a look at those charms Larisha so thoughtfully wasted on you. Do you all remember what she said when she gave them to you?"
After each and every pirate had shaken his head, indicating a unanimous "no", Meheris sighed and continued her explanation.
"She said that you could all breathe underwater as long as you wore those charms."
A crooked smile crossed the captain's face, and after a few very long moments of pondering, a plan formed in his feeble mind.
"Arrr, that's enough, sea horsie!" the captain exclaimed.
Meheris gave a derisive snort, muttered something about "jamming her horn in the hull of a pirate ship," and then gave the floor (so to speak) to the pirate captain.
"'Ere's what we're gonna do, lads. We'll approach that thar vessel--" and for any who might be confused he pointed to his own ship "--from 'neath the tides o' the ocean! Then, we'll climb silent-like up the sides o' the ship and kick all them Petpets overboard!"
"Hold on," Meheris interjected. Despite her lack of interest, she decided it would be better to have the crew of fools sailing the sea than the dangerous pirates who were about to claim another ship for their fleet.
The captain shot her an angry glance and, for a moment, forgot to paddle, slipping beneath the waves.
"Strike deals with them traitorous scum?!" he cried when he had resurfaced.
"You need to barter with the Petpets once you're all on board again," she began. "They obviously want something, or they would have had no reason to rebel against you. You can't always walk over them; now you know that they're worth reckoning with."
The pirates nodded knowingly. Frowning deeply, the pirate captain mulled over what she had said. The Uni had a point.
"So," Meheris paused, "since you lot can steer the ship, fire the cannons and speak in a language that other pirates understand, you have a bartering tool. In exchange for those things, you want your ship back, but you will have to promise to give those Petpets the respect they deserve for the work that they do."
Even the Captain was nodding grudgingly now. Meheris was right.
"Thank ye," the captain said reluctantly, the first courteous words out of his mouth in years. They had a plan now, Meheris' plan, a plan that could actually work.
The pirates sank beneath the tides. They would have to get onto the ship unnoticed, or they would have no chance of bartering with their angry Petpets. And so, with weary arms and legs fueled by new hope, the crew swam hard under the water, making their way quickly towards their ship...
Date: 28th July
...Without such tedious and irritating tasks as breathing to worry about, the pirates quickly found imaginative ways to propel themselves through the water. Despite their previous incompetence at swimming, they now had two expert instructors; Larisha, who spent most of the time giggling uncontrollably, and Meheris, who wore an expression that suggested she had never seen anything quite so ridiculous.
Many of the pirates had attempted to imitate their sea-going companions, putting their legs together and trying to flap them like fins. This resulted in a large amount of floundering in circles before they managed to get the motion down. Others, like the captain, chose a less interesting but far more conventional method; kicking and windmilling his arms. There were more individual strokes as well -- a Kougra near the front seemed to be pretending to be a bicycle, gleefully providing his own sound effects. One particular Mynci was on his back, legs and arms moving like the tentacles of a Maraquan Gelert.
Arath was like a baby Lupe in a Chocolate Chia store. He wanted to try a bit of everything. After a few seconds of swinging his arms around like a submerged Nimmo, he switched to a Gelert-paddle.
As first mate, he took his place next to the captain, and noted the uneasy look on his face. Arath couldn't blame him, the sea was an intimidating place. The sun's rays filtered through the waves, tiny particles dancing in the curtains of light, but beneath that everything was wrought of shadow. Looming undersea mountains rose beneath them, and gorges ran through the ocean floor like open gashes. Amidst the great expanse of water, it was very easy to feel insignificant and vulnerable.
Arath didn't mind, though. He had always found the sea beautiful, and now was no exception, though he became aware that in all his travels, he had merely scratched the surface.
A metaphor that has a literal meaning, he thought with a giddiness uncommon of a pirate that had recently been shoved off his own ship. By his own Petpet, no less.
As their ship grew closer, and after several failed attempts at hand-signal communication, the pirates made an important discovery. Not only could they breathe underwater, they could talk as well. The captain took advantage of this fully, cursing vehemently at everything from their situation to the weather last week. This continued for several minutes, up to the point where Meheris lost any desire to control herself and politely told him to shut up.
The crew's delight was endless as they came to the familiar barnacle-encrusted hull of their ship. A now glowering and bad-tempered captain led them up to the surface, and the pirates clung with relief to the side of their vessel. This served two purposes, the first of which was so the frenzied Petpets would have little chance of spotting them. The second included exhaustion and a not-so-irrational fear of Jetsams.
"A'right, mates," the captain whispered hoarsely to his huddled and sopping pirates, "here's what we gotta do. We're goin' to send one'a ye up there te talk wiv those Petpets, and then he's goin' to come down an' report. Got it?" Dutiful head-nodding from the crew. "Okay. Arath, get goin'."
Arath blanched visibly. He remembered all too well what had happened during his last contact with his Petpet. "Wha'? Me, captain? Why?"
"Because yer Petpet's the leader, an 'cause I say so!" he growled, shoving his first mate towards the rigging.
With a forlorn sigh, Arath pulled himself up with the tar-covered ropes, knowing that arguing was useless. It didn't take long to make it to the deck -- after all, pirates were generally very practised in climbing. He hesitated, barely lifting his eyes above the wood, and was greeted by chaos.
Legions of multi-colored Petpets swarmed the ship, accompanied by loud spueaks, chirps, and mewls that Arath now knew to be language. Everything seemed disorderly, from the Cobrall near a stack of bologna and covered in mustard to the pirate Kookith dancing with rage--
"Patch-eye!" Arath cried before he could help himself.
The effect was immediate.
A suffocating silence fell on the ship as every Petpet stopped its task and turned to look at him, open hostility flaring in their tiny eyes. Patch-eye opened his mouth, no doubt to order Arath tressed up and thrown overboard, but he was interrupted.
"Wait! We came to, er... to apologise. And to offer you a deal." Arath frowned, trying to remember exactly what Meheris said. "We can, um, do all the sailing and talking and... stuff, if you'll let us back on the ship. And we'll give you resp--" Arath guessed by the look of disbelief and scorn his Petpet was giving him that negotiations weren't going well. He was saved further efforts, however, as a sudden outburst of angry yowls and shrieks erupted from the Petpets. Eyes widening fearfully, he sought the cause for their displeasure, desperately hoping it wasn't him, and found it. Over the din that was created, a low boom sounded, thundering out across the sea...
Date: 29th July
..."ME SHIP!" the captain wailed from below as something struck the starboard side, causing everyone aboard to go sprawling across the deck.
"Cap'n Patch-eye, we be under attack!" first mate Fuzzy declared, reporting what everyone already knew. His blatancy earned him a glare.
"That be obvious!" Patch-eye growled, his focus temporarily off of Arath. "Fire back, ye scallywag!"
"Well, Cap'n, the thing is, we can't reach the cannons," Fuzzy said carefully, trying not to upset Patch-eye. Needless to say, this attempt was futile. Patch-eye launched into a string of curses.
Arath watched this peculiar scene unfold, regaining his stance after being shaken around from the cannonball strike. He looked out into the distance. There was no doubt about it; they were spotted, and the enemy ship was on its way to finish them off.
"Er, Patch-eye? Matey? Need some help?" Arath offered as Patch-eye spun around, suddenly interested in the pirate's rantings. "If ye let the crew back aboard, we'll help ye beat that enemy ship. Ye can even have a bigger cut than all o' us if ye let us stay," Arath proposed, forgetting to get the captain's approval first.
Patch-eye narrowed his good eye. It could be a lie, but then again, Arath was never one to fib. There really was no choice, seeing as the Kookith had no desire to die only an hour after taking command. He stubbornly nodded.
Arath jumped around gleefully. "Ye won't be sorry, me ole mate!" he squealed girlishly as he ran over to the edge of the ship. "Cap'n! Ye can climb up! Patch-eye agreed to let us aboard!"
Within minutes the entire crew was back aboard, awkwardly greeting their mutinous Petpets. Patch-eye pointed to the helm of the ship and mimed lighting a cannon. The captain understood.
"ALRIGHT YE LAZY LANDLUBBERS! STEER US TOWARDS THE ENEMY AND POSITION THE CANNONS TO FIRE BACK IMMEDIATELY! WHEN WE BE CLOSE ENOUGH, PREPARE TO BOARD HER!" he barked.
Pirates and Petpets once again worked together as they sailed themselves next to the enemy ship and beat it back with cannon fire. The Petpets led the boarding attack with as much fervor as their rebellion, leaving little to do for the pirates who followed.
It hardly seemed fair for the enemy crew, who had no idea that Petpets could be so violent. They were bound and gagged in no time as they watched their ship being pilfered.
* * * * *
"I'm glad we could come to an agreement," the captain sighed as he shook paws with the Kookith. Then he noticed how much treasure the Petpets were hoarding. "Ye better not be keepin' all that treasure," he growled.
Patch-eye hissed loudly and pointed accusingly at Arath, who immediately ran out of sight. The captain ran after him, roaring at the top of his lungs. "YE WORTHLESS PILE O' SLUDGE! YE GAVE THAT MUTINOUS SLIMEBALL ALL O' OUR TREASURE! YE'LL BE SWABBIN' DECKS 'TIL YER BACK GIVES OUT! COME BACK HERE!"
Patch-eye smiled. Oh yes, things were definitely going to get better.
Date: 29th July
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