The forest seemed very different from atop the shoulders of a bounding Werelupe. The sinister feeling of a looming threat behind every tree was gone now, they just looked like trees again. Having such a fearsome beast as my friend might have that effect. Of course, I realized Sasabri wasn't so fearsome after all, but I hoped anything lurking in the shadows didn't know that much!
"The Haunted Woods is pretty far away," I tried to offer some conversation. "You must have been travelling for a while."
"Ha, it makes for good exercise!" Sasabri laughed.
"Well, since you've been so kind to offer me a ride, maybe I can return the favour when we get back to town," I proposed. "I'm sure I could find some food fit for a meal...though I'm not too sure what Werelupes even eat."
"Everything!" Sasabri exclaimed with a lick of his lips.
As the woods began to fade, and the stone walls of Altador came back into sight, I left behind that brief but memorable brush with mystery. To think, if tonight had gone any different I could have very well just been a forgotten name in a cautionary folktale.
Sure, I would have loved to have been the hero of my own adventure, but just as well, I was content with never seeing that bizarre faerie again. Besides, I got a new friend instead. Who could complain about that?
The next morning I had hoped we could cobble together some sort of explanation for what we had seen. The myth of the haunted light had been passed around as long as I could remember, now at last we could lay it to rest...or so I thought. Problem was, no one could quite seem to agree on what to make of our story.
"Aaah!" the Lenny librarian had exclaimed. "I have always suspected the existence of a Trickster Faerie! She that would hand out unsolvable quests, and then punish fools who dared accept!"
And yet, when we spoke to the Head Sorceress, she claimed what we saw was no faerie at all, but rather an illusion.
"Do you know how many young, student witches and wizards have gone out to those woods to practice spells they barely understand?" she remarked with a shake of her head. "Those poor trees have no doubt be cursed to Fyora and back again, if anything, I'm surprised we haven't gotten more reports of bizarre happenings like that."
We even asked the Yurble Janitor for his input.
"Two words for ya," he grunted. "Meepit Cultists."
"Uuuh...can you elaborate on that?" I asked.
"Meepit. Cultists," he repeated with gumption.
And so, after all that, we weren't really any closer to solving the mystery at all. The stories changed, but the myth itself prevailed and continued to pass from ear to ear, little details being added each time.
Almost a year later, I was lugging home a sack of vegetables when I caught wind of some younger Neopets, eagerly trading stories.
"...and they say that if you don't bring her exactly what she wants, she'll turn you into a book!" a Korbat exclaimed ominously.
"That's not what I heard!" contested a Skeith. "I heard she turns you into a character IN a book!"
The kids went silent as a shadow suddenly swept over them. They quivered at the sight of the massive Werelupe appearing before them.
"You kids better hope you never find out for yourselves!" he cautioned. "Stay clear of those woods, you hear!"
The trio of youngsters each nodded nervously before taking off in the other direction.
"Sasabri!" I exclaimed, happy to see my friend once more.
"How you been, buddy?!" he called back, pulling me in for a crushing hug.
"Not bad," I answer. "I haven't dared go down that path again. Though I don't know...it's only a matter of time before some poor sap goes wandering out there again."
"Well," Sasabri replied with a pat on my back, "then let's just hope they're lucky enough to run into a second poor sap, like I did."