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||You are on Week 275
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 Seventy Five Ends May 26
"Perry, I hope you know what you're doing!" the Maraquan Zafara agitatedly whispered to her companion.
"Of course I know what I'm doing," the Maraquan Eyrie replied calmly. "I am, or at least I'd like to think that I am, aware at all times. Now, my dear Livvy, if you were not, I would be concerned that you're not quite fit for such an exciting lifestyle as this."
"You know what I'm talking about," Livvy said, rolling her eyes. "Why must you always be so frivolous? This is serious."
"Oh, I couldn't be more serious," Perry said, putting on an expression of mock gravity. "Is this serious enough? I can change my expression if the situation demands it."
"We spent a fortune on these Maraquan paint brushes!" the Zafara continued, ignoring her friend as he made various faces at her. "I hope they're worth it!"
"By 'spent,’ you mean 'stole,’ right?" the Eyrie teased.
"Not so loud!" Livvy hissed, looking around.
"There's never anyone around the back door here, other than that odd cook we see once in a while. Of course, I use the term 'cook' loosely, since I have only seen him slumming around and have yet to see him actually cook something."
"If I regret this later, it will be all your fault."
"And if it succeeds, am I to assume that you'll take the credit? That's hardly fair. Besides, I don't see how it's a bad plan at all. After all, we are thieves. We rob the rich. It's what we do. As a thief, ask yourself: where can the greatest number of rich Neopians be found at any given time? Kelp, of course! The price of a meal there is about the same as the cost of a small Neohome! Rest assured, there are plenty of fine pickings there, and I fully intend to clean every last one of them out..."
Author: Rob in the Hood|
Date: May 19th
...“Yes, yes, I’ve heard this all before,” muttered Livvy. “So there’s no need to get on one of your long and boring tangents again.”
Perry shot his companion a sly smile before asking, “You brought the outfits, right?”
Livvy nodded her answer, digging into a bag she previously had slung over her shoulder. “Yes, they’re right here. One black blouse, one skirt, and a maroon overcoat. But I still don’t know what you need these for...”
“Why, I believe your lack of culture is showing,” the Eyrie pronounced as he began to slip on the maroon overcoat. “Have you even seen the inside of the Kelp? No, silly question, of course you haven’t. The waitresses wear a blouse like this, with a skirt. And,” he said while pointing to his jacket, “the maitre d’ wears something like this.”
Livvy growled low as she grabbed Perry’s coat and dragged his face towards hers. “I don’t know how to act like a waitress! This plan is a failure!”
With a wily smirk, Perry gently removed the Zafara’s paw from his collar and straightened out his jacket. “No, this plan is not a failure. Look, we’re not going to be in there long enough to attract suspicion. We'll start slow and simple. I’ll roam around the restaurant until I spot a table ready to leave. Then, you’ll sweep in and take the money they’re paying for their check. Simple? We’ll be in and out in no time.”
Livvy seemed to calm down a bit, but still looked tense. “I guess I don’t have much a choice at this moment.” She finished putting on her outfit, adding the black collar Perry had also asked her to bring. With a final check in the mirror, she turned to her partner.
“Alright, I’m ready to go...”
Date: May 22nd
...Perry rolled his eyes. "You weren't kidding, were you?"
Frowning, Livvy glanced down the length of her body. "About what?"
"About the fact that you don't know what you're doing," replied the Eyrie tartly. "My dear companion, look at your skirt. The crease goes along the side, not down the front like you have it. See? The slit is for your tail, so you can swim more easily."
Flushing a dark shade of pink, the Zafara hastily made the correct adjustments. "I told you I didn't know anything about being a waitress," she grumbled defensively.
"You won't need to be a waitress, my frightened friend," assured Perry in silken tones. "You will need to be a thief tonight."
"Let's just get in there," muttered Livvy as the two approached the entrance.
The Eyrie opened the door with a flourish. "After you."
"Thanks." Livvy shot him a glare as she stomped past.
Inside the restaurant, the waitress in charge of seating gave them a strange look. "Do I recognize you?" she asked, a confused smile on her lips. "I haven't seen you before, and--" she glanced at the clock, an ancient creation that had been salvaged from a sunken ship, "and 6:19 is a peculiar time to be starting a shift."
Livvy tensed, her eyes going wide, but Perry glided in front of her, wearing his largest and sunniest smile. "My dear, we have arrived early. The boss requested that my fellow server and I aid at the dinner shift tonight, since business there is busier than at our usual working hours, and we wanted to provide all the time to assist that we could. What tables need waiting?"
The waitress glanced down her list. "Tables seven, nine, and twenty-two," she replied, glancing at Livvy. "And we have a 'special case' in the grand hall that might need your attention, maitre d'."
As her thief companion nodded curtly and took off toward the grand hall, Livvy paused in a moment of confusion. Which way were the tables that she was supposed to wait? Throwing her back into as straight a line as she could manage, she took off toward the left half of the restaurant, hoping it was the correct direction. Fortunately the door slammed with a new pair of customers coming in then, so the waitress was disctracted. Even so, Livvy could sense the looks that the other servers gave her as they saw an unfamiliar face; she was sure that her presence would be questioned shortly.
As she headed through the tables aimlessly, trying to look as if she knew what she were doing, a hoof touching her arm made her jump. She wheeled toward the motion, half-prepared to fight her way out if need be, but saw only a pair of Maraquan Unis sitting at a table. "Ma'am, can we get some more sea-salt over here?"
"Sure," replied the Zafara through clenched teeth, with Perry's You won't need to be a waitress! echoing through her head...
Date: May 23rd
* * * * *
...While Livvy was making her way towards the kitchen to please her "customers," Perry was containing his brimming curiousity and excitement as he made his way to the Grand Hall. A 'special case,' she had said -- those were her exact words. Thoughts of Maraquan creatures decked out in the latest fashions and strung up with jewels haunted his thoughts. The Eyrie took up a faster, brisker pace, nodding formally to waiters and waitresses he passed. His confidence instantly dispelled any suspicious thoughts that might have filled their heads.
Perry approached a large set of double doors, each a purple hue and covered with coral decor. Allowing only one moment to appreciate its charm, the Eyrie then yanked open the doors and proceeded to walk into the Grand Hall...
...Where his jaw then dropped and his eyes became as wide as dinner plates. Oh yes, there were certainly a few rich people. Standing towards the wall and mingling in low tones amongst themselves. But they were evidently not here of their own will. Most likely to supervise their children, Perry guessed.
For, bouncing off the walls, swimming in rapid circles around each other, filling the Grand Hall with their shrieks and laughs, were a large gathering of rather young Maraquan pets. Towards the end the hall were a large group of tables, where evidently the meal would appear. But not yet, obviously. What was going on?
"Sir! Thank goodness you're here!" came the breathless voice of a Maraquan Blumaroo, a waiter by the look of his attire, "I just- wait, you're not-"
"I was asked to fill in tonight," replied the Eyrie, smiling, "Now, be so kind as to inform me why the Grand Hall of Kelp is filled with bouncing, screaming children? We don't play host to this kind of company," he glanced at the waiter's name tag, "Erik."
"Well, yes, normally. But it's Jonathan Plankton's birthday, Sir, and as you well know, the Plankton's are the richest family under the sea. So of course, they insisted on renting out our fine facilities for this special occassion," the Blumaroo sighed, "We may be getting paid extra, but we have to put up with Jonathan, a real brat if I do say so myself," he said, lowering his voice, "and maybe twenty or so of his close, equally annoying friends."
"Extra pay?" inquired Perry.
"Well, yeah, if we do the job right," replied Erik, "But so far, I don't even know if that's going to happen! The food's not ready yet, the kids are off the walls, and the entertainment scheduled to arrive isn't here yet!"
"What entertainment?" asked Perry sharply. Perhaps he could fill in, and as a result get a nice healthy tip.
"Donnavan the Magical and his lovely assistant Gloria," recited Erik grumpily, "but so far he's yet to-"
"No worry," cut in Perry, flashing his bright smile, "I think I know of the perfect replacement..."
Date: May 23rd
* * * * *
...Livvy, meanwhile, was playing waitress to almost every table in the restaurant itself. She had already fetched two containers of sea-salt, a pitcher of lemonade, a lobster special, a homemade kelp soup, and, by the look of the waving hands in front of her calling for service, she would have plenty more to do.
The Zafara growled angrily, wondering where Perry was. Her question was answered almost immediately when he appeared in front of her wearing a top hat and a dark blue cloak decorated with gold stars.
"What are you DOING?" hissed Livvy. "While I run around and work like crazy you think it's funny to play dress-up? I haven't even gotten the chance to..." She gave him a meaningful look. "...you know. Why, I haven't even been to the Grand Hall yet!"
Perry gave her his charming smile. "Dear Livvy, the plan has changed somewhat. Ah, but no worries, for this new plan will rake in so much more money for us..."
The Zafara rolled her eyes. "Why do I have the feeling that I'm not going to like this?"
* * * * *
Minutes later, Livvy came out of the restroom clothed in the gaudy, sparkling red dress of a magician's assistant.
"Where did you get this dress, anyways?" she asked him as she patted down the wrinkles and surveyed herself in front a mirror.
"No time to chat, my dear," said Perry, giving her a winning smile as he put the final adjustments to his costume. He looked every inch a magician. "Now, remember," he added, flipping on his top hat and stuffing a long piece of ribbon down one sleeve that he would undoubtedly pull out later, "Your name is Gloria. You are the assistant to yours truly, Donnavan the Magical."
"How are we supposed to, as you said, 'rake in so much more money?'" Livvy queried. "I don't see how we get more from kids, anyways."
Perry winked at her, blowing a balloon and crafting it into a Puppyblew for her. "Oh, a bit of this and that."
"Dare I ask if 'this and that' is legal?" said Livvy sarcastically. "And what IS the plan, anyways? You haven't told me yet."
"And what would the fun be if you knew?" he asked wickedly, pushing her gently through the doors into the Grand Hall...
Date: May 24th
...and he followed her, covering his face with part of his cape. Just the fact that he was doing this made the children go crazy. They started to cheer, darting down to the floor. The Eyrie held out his other claw that was not holding the cape up.|
"I come from a far away land, a mythical place under the sea where the water is lilac and rainbows dance across the sand. Where Primellas dance to music with the scuttling Crabulas and the sunlight never fades..."
The children oh'ed and ah'ed at the thought of such a place. Livvy had to admit that Perry was exceptionally good at pretending.
"I have come from that far land to entertain the birthday--"
"BOO! Go back to magic land!" shouted one the the children, a tiny Maraquan Draik. The barrage of bubbles that escaped his mouth filled the air. Perry tried to ignore him and continue on with his speech.
"--boy. I have also brought my lovely assistant with me, Gloria!" He gestured grandly to the Zafara, who could not help but blush with embarrassment as she curtsied.
"You're ugly!" shouted the little Draik again. He flung some sea-salt at Livvy's face. It hit her squarely and all the other children began to laugh.
"Now, now, dear! Don't get so angry!" stage-whispered the Eyrie, and he again continued.
"Where I come from, I have many names. I am the king's personal magician. I entice beasts away from our kingdom. I have made the darkest shadows disappear. I am..." He paused for dramatic effect. "Donnavan the Magical!" With his last words, he threw open his cape, throwing colored confetti into the air. The children went wild.
"Now, for my first trick I need..."
Perry didn't get much further when the small Draik spoke up again. "Hey! Mommy and Daddy said that you would preform any trick I wanted to see. You don't get to choose!"
Perry was losing his professionalism. "Well, I'm sure mommy and daddy didn't mean it like that..."
"Yeah they did! Afterall, I AM the birthday boy!!!" He snickered quite evilly. Livvy shivered.
Perry tried again. "Well, Jonathan, is it? Wouldn't you rather me suprise you with a trick rather than--"
"NO! DO AS I SAY! I'M THE BIRTHDAY BOY AND I WANT YOU TO MAKE ME DISAPPEAR!"
"I'll make you disappear," muttered the Zafara under her breath, still rubbing salt off her face.
Perry realized that he needed to please this Draik if he ever hoped to get to the trick he wanted to do. "Alright... if I make you disappear and then reappear, will you let me do the trick I was planning?"
"Great... so, for my first trick, I will make the birthday boy DISAPPEAR!"...
Date: May 24th
...Perry smoothly brought the small Draik up next to him and smiled hugely at him. His mind raced, but his face was calm and smooth. "Well, young man, I must warn you, I haven't quite perfected this trick. Sometimes, when I try to bring you back after you've disappeared, not all of you comes back," he said in grim tones. This brought a delighted ooh from Jonathan's friends.
Jonathan's mother, a tall, elegant Aisha in a professional suit, snapped, "What a fake. Do you expect me to believe you can do this trick? I doubt you could make a Mortog disappear, let alone my son."
Perry simply raised an eyebrow with a small smirk, while Livvy froze and her breathing quickened. "Of course I can. Or, ma'am, would you prefer if I made you disappear, so you'd know it wasn't a hoax?" he asked coolly.
"NO!!" Jonathan screamed. "HE HAS TO MAKE ME DISAPPEAR, MOMMY!!!!! NOT YOU!!!!"
Jonathan's mother's face closed down and uttered not another word.
Perry, backed into a corner, then put Jonathan up on a stool and said clearly, "I will now put this sheet over young Jonathan, then, while I say the magic words, everyone must close their eyes; even I will close my eyes, for a blinding flash comes as Jonathan disappears. If your eyes aren't shut you will be blinded." He then threw a shimmering silver sheet over the little Draik's head and all the children promptly slammed their eyes shut.
Perry waited until every person in the Grand Hall had their eyes shut, then he began loudly uttering nonsense. As he spoke, he gestured Livvy off of the stage and into the crowd of people.
Livvy gracefully flitted through the crowd, soundlessly pulling every Neopoint-filled wallet from every pocket. She then climbed back onto the stage as Perry, still speaking the magic words, laid out flash bombs in preparation for their escape.
Perry lit the bombs, and as the flame travelled down the wick, he yelled the dramatic finish to his spell.
The bombs went off, someone screamed, Perry grabbed Livvy's hand, and they swam...
Date: May 25th
...through the dazzling flash and the ensuing clouds of smoke in the water. A number of small giant squids -- Livvy didn't want to know whether they were pets, gifts, or dinner -- added to the confusion by spewing ink into the water in alarm.
They dashed out the doors of the Grand Hall; the doors swung shut again and every customer, cook, and waiter in the restaurant turned to stare. Perry flourished his now ink-stained cape and winked gleefully at the hostess. "The act's an utter hit!" he announced in a carrying undertone, then buttonholed the actual maitre d'. "Pardon, Monsieur, but can you direct me to a quick route outdoors? My next trick is a bit touchy and has to be prepared just at the prior moment."
"Of -- of course." A pointed fin, some quick tail-work, and they were out and swimming fast to change clothes, then onward through secret routes to their headquarters, where Perry and Livvy collapsed in delighted exhaustion.
"All right," Livvy said, giggling a little giddily with relief. She cast the wallets in a heap and threw her arms around Perry's neck. "I didn't believe it would work, but it did."
"Of course it did, my dear," he said grandly, returning her embrace and then turning to the side. "And it will work even better...." He twitched at the silvery cloth with which he'd covered the bratty Draik boy.
Livvy hadn't thought about it before, but the billowing bright cloth had been moving rather strangely. Now, before her horrified eyes, Perry swept it aside to reveal Jonathan Plankton, bound and with his mouth tied shut.
She looked up at Perry again. He beamed at her. "Ransom!"...
Date: May 25th
...Livvy could feel the blood draining from her face, and while her blood went down the pitch of her voice went up. "YOU KIDNAPPED HIM?!" she shrieked, backing away from the squirming Draik as if the air around him burned her.
Perry smirked at her. "My dear Livvy, if one wishes to prosper in this thrilling profession, then one must take a chance now and then. This young fellow will bring in more profit than any venture we have yet undertaken!"
"But abducting a child?" The Zafara's voice was faint, and she stared in horror at the Eyrie she had thought she knew so well.
Perry's eyes took on a condescending look. "He will return to plague his parents shortly -- that is, assuming they're willing to pay to have him back. And if they don't, we can simply drop him off somewhere--"
Jonathan's wide-eyed gaze was darting between the arguing Neopets, and Livvy could see that tears were beginning to form in those big, glistening eyes.
"Perry," she said, her voice cold and near to breaking, "I never would have thought I would see you do something like this. Stealing wallets is one thing, but... No. We're taking him back right now."
Perry frowned. "Now, Livvy..."
His voice trailed off, and his jaw suddenly slackened as he stared in wide-eyed disbelief at Jonathan. The little Draik was changing... growing... transforming...
"What-- how- what in the world?" Perry stammered. Livvy backed away even further, her paws beginning to tremble as a voice completely unlike Jonathan's escaped the creature's mouth.
"You idiot. You thought you were very clever, with your lights and noises and sleight of paw. Pah! For one such as me -- one who has true power -- it was an easy matter to switch places with the child." The creature's gaze was hard, cold and sharp as a Maractite blade, and it flicked in Livvy's direction for a moment before returning to bore into Perry.
"Your assistant, Gloria -- or was it Livvy? -- she may go. She is of no use to me. You on the other hand..." A cruel smile played across the creature's lips, and its eyes flashed with cold malevolence. "You treacherous backstabber, I've been waiting years for this," it concluded, enunciating the words with slow relish as its shifting and shimmering body resolved itself into...
Date: May 26th
...an enormous monster, larger than any pet Perry had ever seen.
Perry gulped. He mouthed soundlessly for a moment, then found his voice. "Livvy?" he said in a barely audible whisper.
"Yes Perry?" Livvy never took her eyes off the creature before her.
"Livvy-- Livvy run. Run, now." Perry sounded frantic.
"Perry," Livvy asked, "who is that."
"Livvy run!" The monster was watching them go back and forth, but Perry suspected he wouldn't be so indifferent for long.
"Perry, tell me."
"I'm telling you, just run!" Perry's warning fell on deaf ears. Even so, by then it was too late.
The monster had reached down and picked Livvy up by the tail. He chuckled. "Perry, should I tell her why I’m here before I eat her?" Perry began to speak, but the beast didn't give him time to answer. "It doesn't matter really, but I think it would be worth telling her just so she could know some of your real history before she goes. Maybe if she knows who she's been in cahoots with for all this time, she'd think that my stomach would be a better place to be than with you.
Perry flushed. "Livvy knows my past. The good and the bad."
"Really?" the giant raised an eyebrow. "Hmm. I'd have thought if she knew what you did to my brother and I, she wouldn't have been so surprised that you kidnapped a child."
Livvy was blinking away the headache she was getting from hanging upside-down for so long. "Perry," she said, "You never mentioned anything about a giant."
"It's not-- it's not something I'm proud of. It's a part of my life I've always been trying to live down and, well-- I figured you wouldn't want to help me if you knew." Perry looked at his feet.
"Perry that's- that's not comforting." Livvy looked at Perry curiously.
"I'd like to tell the story if you don't mind," the monster broke in. "I'd let you two go on, but this is very boring and I'd so like to see the way Miss Livvy looks at you when she finds out.
"Many years ago Perry, my brother and I were a trio. We were the best robbers in the land -- we simply could not fail. My brother was the diversion usually -- he had powers to create a disaster large enough to distract an entire country. I was the sly one -- I was the one who took the things we stole. Perry -- he was the brains -- or he thought he was. He was greedy, power-hungry. He was always afraid that one day we would realize that we didn't need him. But he fooled himself -- told himself we couldn't go on without him. He was right to be worried.
"My brother and I soon realized that he was next to useless. So many of his plans turned out to be a disaster. We decided to become a duo.
"When Perry heard, he was enraged. He knew he had no real power, he knew he was truly weak and useless. He couldn't stand the thought of being left alone to deal with his mistakes.
"So the night after we told him, he decided to take revenge. He ran away with everything we had, and used a mediocre smoke bomb -- similar to the one you used tonight -- to distract us.
"When the smoke cleared, and I saw the wrecked tents and the empty safe, I knew what he had done. It wasn't until I couldn't find my brother, did I know I would not rest until I had had my revenge.
"I searched for him in many a disguise -- my most recent before the child was a cook in the kitchen of the Kelp -- you mentioned me as you made your plans earlier. I knew what you were going to do and changed myself into the child. It was only too easy to outwit you, Perry, the self proclaimed 'clever one.'"
The monster turned to Livvy. Her face was in frozen in shock. The monster smiled, "So, dear Livvy, what do you think of your accomplice now?
Livvy turned to Perry. "Is this... true?"
The look on Perry's face was enough to answer her question.
Livvy sighed. "I should have known," she whispered.
"Livvy-- no, it's not like that-- I didn't mean to-- I didn't mean to hurt anyone. It's just... I'm a thief. It's what I'm good at. I'm not a murderer."
The giant roared, "Tell that to my brother!"
Perry seemed to shrink. "Fine. Please though, please don't hurt Livvy. Just take me. Let her go. She has done nothing to you."
The beast considered. "Fine. She will be free. It will let me deal with you even faster."
The monster dropped Livvy to the ground. She got up, dusted off, and ran away. She didn't give Perry a second look.
The monster advanced towards Perry. Perry gave a resigned sigh. He closed his eyes and prepared for the worst.
But it never came. When he opened his eyes, the monster was shrinking. No, it wasn't shrinking -- it was getting farther away. He looked around and saw Livvy towing him away from the monster. In between the two of them was a blinding light and clouds of smoke -- the last of their smoke bombs.
Luckily the monster had closed its eyes to prepare itself for the moment, and it didn't know where Perry had gone when he opened his eyes. He looked to and fro, but by then Livvy and Perry were far away. But not too far to hear the monster's roar of, "Perry, you may have gotten away from me this time, but I will find you again, and next time I wont let your friend save you!"
Perry turned to the now panting Livvy. "Why-why did you do that?"
Livvy shrugged. "I knew you were sorry." She blushed at the look on the Eyrie's face and said, "Well, I couldn't let you die!" She faltered and looked away.
Perry smiled. "That's good," he began, "because I already have another idea..."
Date: May 26th
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