“I have a reasonable explanation for this!” stammered
Ajliso, looking at the Nimmo who had peeked through her door. She couldn’t manage
to tell another trick, and instead decided to go around the subject. “I’m uh
– a really messy person! And besides, you shouldn’t come into a room without
The Nimmo stared at her, his black beady eyes
unmoving and subtle. His eyes opened wide at the sight of her extra pair of
ears and gaped. Hard. “Wha…” he began to say, before Ajliso interrupted him.
“What do you mean by that, sir? It’s just
the latest fashion, you know. And besides, what are you doing in here?” she
“I’m supposed to check up on recent guests at
the Neolodge. I didn’t think anyone would do much in their first five minutes
of moving in, but…” He glanced at the mess she had made. “I’m sorry, I must
have gotten the wrong room, maybe.”
Ajliso shrugged slightly. “I’m really messy.
I just dumped all of those things there. Sorry, I’ll clean it up after I finish
watching this documentary.”
The Nimmo nodded, and as he closed the door,
Ajliso spotted his tag too. It read ‘Hi, I am Youm, your Neolodge™ host’.
Ajliso picked herself up and walked toward the bathroom door. She shuffled inside
and glanced in the mirror. Looking at her self, she shook her head. Ajliso had
to do something about her extra ears.
“Dung, dung, dung!” the television roared,
forcing Eyelle to make his way toward it, lowering the volume.
“Me has seen a television before…” mumbled Eyelle,
crawling back onto the bed and yawning. He closed his eyes, stretching his small
arms, continuing to yawn. When he finished, Eyelle sat up straight and looked
around the room. Rosch climbed up the bed and sat next to him.
Ajliso made her way out of the bathroom and back
into the main room, which was the only other area that they had rented. She
sat down next to her pile of items and began rummaging through them, remembering
each of their histories and making her own comments to herself.
All the equipment the alien Aisha possessed were
extremely high tech and very useful, and those items were the rewards from passing
a test to get onto the team. As Ajliso scattered the pile into a bigger mess,
she picked up a badge.
Shining it, she talked to herself, but Eyelle
listened with intent. Well, will you look at that? I got that on my first
day. Hmm, she thought, trying to remember the events of the past. My
first terrible day.
Ajliso was grumpy on the day she had officially
joined the team. She wasn’t so happy when she received the news that she had
actually qualified either, but not many people cared. She couldn’t remember
why, but she was down right angry that day, snapping at anybody who had simply
come to greet her.
Because of her first few days of being mean and
irritated, nobody seemed to like her afterwards. They avoided her whenever they
could, and she was never in deep conversation. Ajliso had too much pride, which
she had lost much of with her twin sister, and could not bear to apologize to
anybody. The team did not need to speak with her as they did with the others,
and neither did she. It remained like that.
“Hmm,” she muttered again, looking through her
pile. There were devices of all sorts – communicators, translators, examiners,
and even weapons, which Ajliso quickly tucked back into her belt.
“Hey, Eyelle, do you want to go outside for
a little while?” Ajliso asked, hoping she could withstand the risk of publicity.
She had found a small booklet of ‘how to be Neopian’ in her mess of a pile,
and had read it through.
Eyelle squealed and nodded, hopping into Ajliso’s
arms in an instant. Rosch lifted from his seat and marched behind the alien
Aisha, who walked toward the door and opened it. Closing it behind her cautiously,
she took out the keys she had received from Flops, and stuffed it in the keyhole.
Locking it and making sure once again, she finally departed from her room and
bounded down the stairs and out of the hotel.
Ajliso switched off her oxygen provider, smelling
the sweet sent of Neopian air. “Sweet,” she commented. “But quite a bit warmer
than space air.” After a while, she turned it on again, unaccustomed to the
The alien Aisha carried her Shoyru companion
through the streets, Rosch tagging along close behind. He wandered round, his
tongue flailing in front of him merrily and he strolled along. Eyelle gazed
from his position and looked around at the colourful shops and blue sky. He
hardly ever visited the city and hardly ever saw the gleaming sun above them,
the sapphire sky, the puffy clouds, nor did he had time to enjoy the soft breeze
of the wonderful city.
Plants swayed back and forth, but the Neopians,
being able to see this everyday, hardly took notice at their fortune. Ajliso
also admired the scenery, remembering her old home before she had joined the
team and lived in the ‘rusty, old hunk of a spacecraft’.
Ajliso brought Eyelle into a toy shop, and as
they entered the store, Eyelle gaped. His eyes widened and browsed around the
shop, as his head turned slowly, taking in all the images. He nearly hopped
right out of Ajliso’s hands and into a pile of plushies, but the alien Aisha
placed him on the store ground before he had a chance to spring.
The baby Shoyru went from one shelf to the other,
squealing in delight. Even Rosch had trouble keeping up with his young owner,
panting merrily behind him. Ajliso turned her focus to items that may be useful
for her in the future. She stood, poised, tapping her foot on the floor and
After many minutes, Ajliso finally went searching
for Eyelle around the shop. Luckily, he was not lost, captured, or devoured
by anyone or anything. Ajliso sighed in relief, and saw Rosch scampering after
They left the store with a handful of toys, and
the owner of the store gawking at the gold pieces left, her Lupe paws around
the money. When she lifted her gaze, the trio was already on their way back
to the Neolodge.
When they arrived, Flops opened the door graciously
for them. He bowed slightly, as Ajliso, Rosch, and Eyelle entered the building.
The alien Aisha had tied her ears back with her wavy silver hair, as suggested
in her ‘How to be Neopian’ book. It looked completely unnoticeable now, and
she was glad.
They climbed the stairs and went to their room.
Ajliso continued watching the documentary on dung, as Eyelle and Rosch played
with the new toys they had brought home.
Night arrived quickly, as their entertainment
wore out. They were tired, their eyes squinting in effort. At last, Rosch curled
up by the bed and slept soundly. Eyelle followed, and Ajliso, realizing their
actions, picked him up and tucked him into bed.
It was his first night sleeping away from his
home, his mother, and his past. He tossed and turned, and Ajliso noticed this,
as she lay awake on the chair she was sitting on.
“Unis (proud and pretty) in the meadow // Lupes
(brave and strong) among the prairie // Kikos (agile and kind) in the lakes
that flow, // All blessed by the Faerie (as you are too)…” Ajliso sang as best
as she could. In hardly any time at all, Eyelle slept.
“Hmm,” said Ajliso. “I think I heard that somewhere
before, when I was younger. A soft voice, a melody. Someone sweet was singing
She pondered about her mother; she could not
think of anyone else who had such a voice. Nevertheless, it surprised her because
it was the first time she had remembered her parents.
The Acara eyed them, Ajliso edging uncomfortably away from her. Morning had
arrived, and Ajliso, Eyelle, and Rosch were taking a walk outside early in the
morning. An Acara had crossed their path, stopping them.
“What is it that you wanted, Miss?” asked Ajliso,
“A few little Neopets just walking outside?
Don’t you think that looks odd to you?” asked the Acara, although the question
was quite stupid. Before Ajliso could say anything, she continued, “Don’t you?
You should have parents, young lady. Now don’t give me that face! It’s improper.
Well, maybe not parents, but at least an owner. I had an owner at one point.”
Eyelle glanced at Ajliso, but she did not meet
his gaze. “Pity he didn’t teach you to be quiet!” she hissed to herself. Luckily,
the Acara did not hear her.
“My, my,” the Acara continued. “It should be
time for students to be in Neoschool! Oh! That must be it – are you skipping
classes, young lady? Tsk-tsk, students skipping classes; what a shame it must
be to your owner!”
Ajliso scowled back, “Has it ever occurred to
you that I might be too old to have an owner or parents or go to Neoschool?
Young lady indeed! I must be older than you, little missy!” Even with this,
the ignorant Neopet paid no heed.
She carried them toward a red bricked building
with metallic double doors. She flung them open and yelled, “I demand you go
back to Neoschool!” Shoving them inside a classroom, she left them standing
in the middle of the class.
Ajliso caught the Acara’s collar. “Neoschool?”
To be continued...