This story is one of five series/short stories that I will be writing on my
pets. This one tells of my coming to Neopia, and when I truly started playing.
This story is set in Year One, so Faerieland hadn't been discovered quite yet
at the beginning of the story.
I walked around Neopia Central, trying to get my bearings.
I had been in this… place… for about three weeks now, with no pets, no home,
no friends to speak of, and no Neopoints. I had spent a lot on a map when I
had first come-only to find out it was worth two hundred NP less than the guy
sold it to me for. The only thing that kept people from trying to rob me-other
than that other guy, that is--was the way I wore that sword on my waist. I figured
that with disbelief; I didn't have one in real life.
I strode by, quite sure of myself to anyone
who couldn't read minds, going anywhere at all. I didn't quite know my way around,
but I was starting to get the hang of it. To the West was the Neopian Bazaar,
Northeast was Terror Mountain, East was Tyrannia, and South and west somewhere
was the Haunted Woods and Lost Desert. Other than that, I was completely lost.
I sighed. I didn't have enough Neopoints to
buy a house, and I was not going to get a pet until I at least had a one-room
sturdy NeoHome, four toys, a fridge full of food, and some sleeping bags. I
could always bring the stuff from home, I thought idly. Be a lot cheaper.
No, I decided firmly. I can't cheat
"Hey," I called to a passer-by. "Which way to
"That way," he told me, pointing.
"Thanks!" I went in the direction she pointed,
weaving my way through the crowd. I caught my reflection in a store window.
Tall, slim, and muscular, my hair was a different shade from back home. Nothing
drastic, just a bit redder, and more shine. I still had the same color eyes,
though. Maybe a touch bluer, but too subtle to tell. I had fewer freckles, thank
the Grove--I chuckled at that, as I had never said that before I had started
writing a story about Elves--I hated having all but dark brown skin. Actually,
my skin was, if anything, fairer. Joy. Not for the first time, I wished desperately
that you could pick your appearance, not have it chosen for you when you came
here. I had met a wacko that said it was destiny, though he had admitted he
was 3'9" in the real world, with buckteeth and glasses. Not at all like his
tall, handsome appearance here. Then again, maybe it was; I was definitely the
only one who had markings on their wrists that looked like black swans.
Upon arriving at the Gameroom, I headed over
to the only game I was any good at; Destruct-O-Match. I managed to make four
hundred NP, an all-time high.
"Excuse me, sir, but could you tell me which
way to the Bank?" I had to figure out how to get around before someone pasted
a 'six months and still lost' sign on my forehead. I acted like I'd been here
six months, at least, except for when I had to ask directions.
"That way," he told me, pointing the opposite
direction I had thought it was. Grumbling to myself, I walked away, not really
seeing where I was going. Which was no wonder why I managed to find myself tripping
over three bumps in the path and a large tree root, landing smack-dab in the
middle of a pile of dung.
When I set out again, I didn't realize I had
taken the wrong path. I stumbled along, not knowing where I was, until I found
myself somewhere else entirely. Not the wild overgrown forest I had just been
lost in, but a beautiful city.
"Uh, miss, do you know where I am?" I asked
a girl with fairy wings.
The girl darted off before I could ask her where
Faerieland was. I had been here three weeks and never heard of it. I stomped
off towards I don't know where, tripping once on the smooth pavement, bumping
into people who didn't comment when they saw the sword I didn't know how to
use, before finally falling with a splash into a pool of water. I rolled over
onto my back and lay there for a while, staring up at the lace-like glass roof
of the Springs. A few Faeries stared at me, but I ignored them. I couldn't wait
until I had enough money to afford a pet; they seemed to know where to go instinctively.
"Er, excuse me, miss, are you okay?" I leaned
my head back and looked at the blonde-haired, pointy-eared woman looking down
at me. A woman that glowed and had a mermaid's tail.
"Oh, I'm just fine, lying here thinking of how
stupid I must look to everyone."
"You have no idea."
"Oh, nothing much. A zillion people think I'm
a newbie just because I don't have a pet, I tripped a million times and landed
in dung once, and I hate not having more than a few NP."
"And once you landed in my Springs."
"Why don't you have a pet?" she asked me as
she reached out a hand to help me up.
"I don't want to have a pet without a home.
It's bad enough that I sleep in a cardboard box in the Homeless Square behind
the Toy Shop without having a pet there, too. I want to have a home, a shop,
some toys, and some sleeping bags before I get one. What is it?"
The Water Faerie had gasped and dropped my hand,
and now she was covering her mouth with one hand, her eyes wide.
"Your-your wrists, they-have the swans!"
"Yeah, I know. I wish I didn't have them--they
draw far too much attention to me."
"No! These are very important! They-" the Water
Faerie took a deep breath and continued on calmly. "They are a mark of a mage.
None but the Faeries can work magic here, with the exception of a few Neopet
mages in games like NeoQuest. The closest thing to working magic a human can
come to is learning their special abilities. Everyone has special abilities,
some more powerful than others. You have more than a special ability, you have
magic within you."
"Great," I muttered. "So, lemme guess, I'm gonna
save the world with these special powers, right?"
She laughed. "Someone's been watching too many
movies, lately. No, right now all you need to do is train. Come." The Water
Faerie led me into this small house, down a flight of fluffy white stairs, and
into a brightly lit room full of jars and bowls, all full of different things.
"What would you like to learn first?" she asked
me, her hand on a ball of cloud she had gathered together and set on the table.
"How about…" I racked my brain, unconsciously
fingering my sword as I thought. What did I want to learn first? "Why not healing?"
"Excellent! I haven't had an apprentice for
years! Okay, let's start by testing your magic. Come here." She motioned me
to come over to where she was standing and lifted up the piece of cloud. "Put
your hand inside this," she told me.
Slowly, I pushed my hand through the cloud,
until my fingers hit against something hard. Curious, I put my hand in further,
until I could close my hand on it. It was a stone of some sort, smooth, warm,
and very, very hard. It was about the size of my fist, round, and from what
I could see through the dense cloud, glowing a soft blue light.
"Take it out," she told me, and I did. It was
a blue diamond, pulsing with a light from the center of the stone.
"You are very powerful," she told me. "I only
got a sapphire." I only then noticed that she had a simple necklace on-nothing
much, just a gold chain with, sure enough, a sapphire. It had no light and was
only about the size of an average strawberry.
"The rarity of the stone tells how powerful
you are. The last apprentice I had only got an amethyst, and very small. Light
also tells how powerful you are. Now, I haven't seen a stone like that since
the Faerie Queen herself!"
I stared at the large stone. "Is this really
a sign of how powerful I am?"
"Yes. Keep it close; it is the sign of your
using magic. None who can work magic will doubt you, if you have it. But, best
not to show it yet, huh?" I nodded. "Okay, I think I've got something around
here… Whoops!" The Water Faerie disappeared under a pile of what I could only
describe as 'junk,' before crawling out with something brown in her hand, muttering
about cleaning the place up. "Here you go. It's a pouch you can slip around
"Thank you," I said. I was kind of unsure about
this. Magic? Me?
"When do you want to start learning?"
Of that I was sure. If I was going to learn,
I might as well start now. "Right now, Water Faerie."
She laughed. "Just call me Kelra, all my friends
"All right, Kelra. Can I begin to learn now?"
"Correct language! It's may you begin to learn
now. I can't stand incorrect speakers."
"So, what can I do first?" I asked her.
"See those bottles over there? Grab them and
I got the bottles she had pointed to and followed
her up the steps to the main Healing Springs, where a large group of Faeries
were waiting, some sick and most nursing wounds.
"Go and manage the shop. I'll be over in a minute,"
she whispered to me. I nodded and went over to where a bunch of Faeries were
waiting by the counter, holding items of healing.
"Okay, bring up the items, and hand over the
Neopoints. Come on," I told them impatiently. This was not my idea of a lesson.
It was pretty easy to know how much each thing
cost-they all had the price tags taped on them. The hardest part was getting
them to hand over the NP, since I wasn't Kelra. They gave me the NP eventually,
though, when I started fingering my sword. That or they left without the healing
item. I watched Faeries come and go, looking at all the different Elemental
Faeries… taking Neopoints and handing over items became automatic as the sun
dipped below the horizon. When it got dark, Kelra put up a 'closed' sign and
went inside with me.
"Sorry if I kept you a bit too long, but I had
to take care of all those Faeries before teaching you. Do you mind?"
I shook my head, yawning widely.
"Maybe you should get some sleep. If you don't
have a real home to go to, you can stay here. I have a few spare rooms, for
guests. Even a simple Water Faerie gets company, you know."
"Thanks, that would be fine. Oh! Here's your
money from the shop," I told her as I held out the money.
"Thanks. Now, you worked about four hours…"
Kelra dropped two thousand NP into my palm. "You've earned it, working for so
long. I'll give you your first lesson in the morning."
She led me through the cloud, twisting and turning
for a long time, before finally reaching a room with a large bed, a night table,
a closet across from the bed, a dresser, a desk beside it, and a small bathroom
off the main room. There was another door, but I couldn't tell what it led to.
"Now, I think that it looks a bit bare. Ah!"
she snapped her fingers, and a candle in a golden holder appeared on the wall,
a silver brush on the table, a few changes of clothes in the closet-mostly dresses-and
a soft wool nightgown spread out on the bed. "You can add anything you like,
but I think that this is a good start. There's a kitchen through that door,
if you feel like doing your own cooking, a pantry leading off there, and a storage
room as well, for your herbs and things when we get into that. I'll wake you
in the morning, at sunrise. Good night." She smiled and left, closing the door
softly behind her.
I went over to the closet to investigate the
clothes. Dresses, all of them. They were all different colors and cuts, ranging
from pure white to dark gray, though my favorite was pale lavender with a 'wrap'
top and skirts wide enough to get good movement from them. I set it aside to
wear tomorrow, got into the nightgown, climbed into bed, and blew out the candle.
To be continued...