|It was Madam Kelly's favourite day of the year. The Cybunny woke up bright and early, put on her fuzzy Snowbunny slippers, and hurried to her front porch first thing in the morning. The crisp spring air greeted her. She saw her neighbour over the fence and waved.
"Good morning, Timothy!" Madam Kelly said cheerfully. "It's a lovely day, the best day! Do you know why?"
"Because today marks the 900th issue of the Neopian Times!" answered Madam Kelly with a large grin. "It's a very sought-after special edition. I made sure I set six alarm clocks so I wouldn't miss it. It has wonderful comics and articles and... Oh, here it comes!"
A white delivery Weewoo was flying through the sky. He landed on the sidewalk next to the two houses and nodded at the two Neopets, then began sorting through his mailbag.
"Let's see... letter for Timothy... two coupons to Pizzaroo... That's it." The Weewoo tipped his hat with his wing. "Good day."
He was about to fly off when Madam Kelly cried, "Wait a minute! Where is my special issue of the Neopian Times? It's my favourite one of the entire year!"
"Oh. Right." The Weewoo seemed embarrassed. "There's been a problem at the Neopian Times headquarters, you see."
Date: Apr 27th
"A problem?!" Madam Kelly repeated. "What kind of a problem?"
"Well, there may not actually be a problem AT headquarters," the Weewoo said, shifting on his perch. "We can't really know until we find it."
"What do you mean, find it?" Madam Kelly was growing irritated; she'd been looking forward to this for ages, her coffee was growing cold, and this Weewoo wasn't giving her any straight answers.
"You see, headquarters, er, went missing last night." The Weewoo looked down at his feet, then up at Madam Kelly to gauge her reaction.
Madam Kelly seemed almost apoplectic. "M-missing?" she stuttered in response.
"Woke up this morning, flew in to work as usual, but *poof* nothing was there. No building. No workers. No special 900th Issue to deliver. All gone."
"And you're not going to find out what happened to it? You're just delivering coupons instead?!"
"Oh, I'm no reporter," the Weewoo said, backing away. "That's out of my depth."
"Unless..." he said, looking up at Madam Kelly hopefully, "you'd like to help me investigate?"
Date: Apr 28th
"Yes!" Madam Kelly jumped up! "Just let me change out of my slippers and we will investigate."
"That works fine for me Ma'am, I have to deliver the rest of this," the Weewoo said nodding at his bag. "I will come back once I am done.
They both left and when Madam Kelly came out of her house he was there waiting for her. Together they walked to where the Neopian Times was supposed to be.
As the Weewoo had said, there was nothing there. Not even a trace of the building.
"Let's look around to see if we can find anything. You never know what we will stumble across." The Weewoo said.
A few moments of looking, Madam Kelly saw something, it was a Red Neocola Token.
In unison, they both whispered, "Dr. Sloth."
Date: Apr 29th
"What would Dr. Sloth want with the Neopian Times?" the Weewoo whispered uncomfortably, shifting on his feet.
"It could be anything," Madam Kelly replied uneasily. Then, visibly gathering her resolve she lifted her head high. "We will just have to find out!"
"Maybe this is too big for us," the Weewoo looked close to tears. "Maybe we need help."
"You're as big as you need to be!" Madam Kelly's tones rung out in the empty air. "Remember, the greatest Neopians of their time were often the little people!"
"But I'm just a..."
"No 'but's' about it!" she declared triumphantly. "Puff up your feathers, we're heading to the Space Station."
"But how are we even going to get there?"
"We fly, of course!"
And fly they did, although not in as exciting a fashion as Madam Kelly might have hoped. Climbing into a small shuttle and exiting via the visitor's hangar didn't have quite the aplomb of Neopets saving the world... or at least the newspaper, but beggars couldn't be choosers she supposed.
"Where do we go now?" The rather daunted looking Weewoo asked. His regular shift delivering parcels was looking more and more inviting by the second.
"Where do you think?" Madam Kelly replied, heading confidently towards a door that had the words NO ENTRY painted across it in big red letters. "We go exactly where they don't want us to go."
Her hand reached out and gripped the cool metal handle.
"After all," she shot back with a smile. "What's the worst that could happen?"
"Well, we could disappear too..." the Weewoo muttered as the door opened.
How will this story end?
Date: Apr 30th
“GET OUT OF THE WAY!!!” a Grundo barrelled past them, pushing a huge cart of papers. They were met with a scene of utter chaos: papers flying everywhere, typing terror robots clicking and whirring, Grundos running to and fro…
Madam Kelly was shocked, but the Weewoo was grinning, “hey! We found the Neopian Times printing room!”
Before the Cybunny could respond, a shadow loomed over them, “OY! Who are you, and what are you doing here!?” The Weewoo jumped, “SLOTH!” and hid behind Madam Kelly. But it was not Sloth. It was…someone else.
“Who are YOU?” demanded Madam Kelly, “and what is the Neopian Times printing room doing HERE!?”
The mysterious being took a big gulp from their coffee cup, “I’m Aesop. The new editor of The Neopian Times” they answered, “and as for your second question: what does it LOOK like it’s doing here? It’s printing out Issue #900!”
“But why move here?” asked the Weewoo, “why not just print it back in Neopia like always?”
The editor gave them a look. The pair took Aesop in: hair dishevelled, eyes twitching, looking jumpy and extra-alert. “Because,” Aesop punctuated each word, “It took a whole space station to do the job. Do you know how many articles, stories, comics, and series I’ve read!? DO YOU!?”
Aesop continued before either of them could respond, “THOUSANDS! And then they told me I had to CHOOSE! CHOOSE!? How could I choose when there were so many - SO many - deserving pieces!? It was an impossible task!” - they took another large swig of their drink - “But I did it. Boy howdy, I made it happen! The Neopian printing room couldn’t handle the MIGHT that this edition contains, so I moved the whole business over here!”
Madam Kelly looked at the editor in awe, and her eyes almost brimmed with tears of joy. Not only was her favourite Neopian Times Issue safe, but it also seemed to be in the hands of an enthusiastic, wonderful, and dedicated editor! She couldn’t be more thrilled for the future of the Times!
The Weewoo, however, was still curious, “but what about this Neocola token we found? It has a picture of Sloth on it…we thought…”
“Your drink, Editor,” said a Grundo coming up to Aesop’s elbow, handing them a fresh cup, “Coffee, mixed with Neocola, mixed with Achyfi, with two shots of Wakey Wakey Juice!”
The Weewoo blushed.
That night, just as Madam Kelly was getting into bed, she heard a tap-tap-tap at her window. She opened the latch, and let the white Weewoo in. He looked slightly out of breath but was beaming with pride. He handed her a neatly tied up newspaper: The Neopian Times, Issue #900.
“It was tight, but they did it! They really did it!” he declared joyfully.
Madam Kelly gazed up at the stars where her new Neopian Times Guardian was, she hoped, dozing deservedly.
“Yes. Yes, they did.”
Date: May 1st