The Unnoticed Aisha
I walked through the centre of Neopia. I came to the Marketplace and walked
right into the centre, where the Soup Faerie was giving out bowls of steaming
broth. My mouth watered. Poor owners pushed and shoved to get their soup, and
many pets were fed, but a little red Aisha like me went unnoticed, with no owner
to carry me to the front to be fed. I wandered away again. It was cold, the
middle of the month of Storing. I would be storing food if I had any, but I
hadn't eaten since yesterday, and I was sure I would soon collapse. A shopkeeper
recognised that I was hungry and threw some bread out to me, before retreating
into the warmth of their shop, glowing with the electric lights. I chewed on
the bread and curled up in a doorway to sleep. I dreamed I was in a hot and
sandy place. I sat in the shade, fanning myself with large dry leaves. The sun
made everything golden, although there were Christmas lights hanging in small
shady huts. Then I woke up to be painfully reminded that I was sleeping outside
in the middle of winter. It was early morning. I sat up and rubbed my paws together.
Not many pets or owners were about at this time. I leaped up and ran to the
Soup Faerie, who looked down and saw me.
"You look hungry," she said kindly. I didn't know how to talk, so I just mewed
and nodded. The Soup Faerie carried me inside and made me some broth. The faerie
spoke to me while I ate it, and soon realised that I could not speak. She bought
some books and taught me the gift of speech, and after a week I could tell the
faerie what I wanted. Then the Soup Faerie said,
"I can't look after you any longer. I must make broth and feed poor pets from
all over Neopia."
"Is there a big hot sandy place?" I asked.
"You mean the desert," said the Soup Faerie. "There is one a long way away.
I cannot take you there; I must look after all the hungry NeoPets." So I went
out into the cold Marketplace, past all the owners with bulging shopping bags,
past the painted pets tucked up in their scarves and coats, to an empty place
that seemed to go on forever. Fields followed fields on into the distance, long
wet frosty grass that stretched off to nowhere. But I knew that everything must
lead somewhere, so I set off. I walked all day, and then I dug myself into the
hard earth and tried to sleep, but she couldn't. It was too cold, and I was
afraid that even if I did fall asleep I would freeze to death. Just then a man
in a warm coat and hat ran past. I called out to him and he came back.
"Look at you poor thing, here all alone. Come with me, my NeoHome is less
than half a mile away." And with that he picked me up and carried me inside
his coat to a city full of small round houses with coloured roofs. They went
into one of them, a house with a red roof and brightly lit windows. My eyes
watered with the warmth. A Scorchio, a Chia, a Bruce and a Shoyru ran out of
a bedroom at the back of the house, and hugged their owner, who fed all five
of us, and then sent the others to bed.
"As you can see, you cannot stay here as I already have four NeoPets. However,
you may spend the night here." He got a sleeping bag out of a cupboard and I
slept on a chair, waking up to be fed hot chocolate. I remembered that I had
to keep going, and looked out of the window. To my dismay I saw that the Snow
Faerie had visited during the night. I shivered; the man had told me that the
lost desert was a long, long way away. I was about to turn from the window when
I saw the Snow Faerie herself dancing down the street in a long white sleeveless
dress. The people of Cute City ran and hid in their homes. The Snow Faerie stopped
at the house I was in, and knocked sharply on the door. The central heating
seemed to break down at that second, and the owner of the four NeoPets opened
the door. "I've come for my Aisha," she declared icily. Then she snatched me
and swept off into the blizzard with me in her arms. She flew with me for miles
and miles. Snowflakes stung my cheeks, and if I opened my mouth to protest I
got a mouthful full of snow. She took me to a frozen mountain. At the foot people
danced in the snow and bought drinks, in a cave in the side NeoPets skated and
dared each other to go far into the caves. But we went to the top, where the
wind was strong enough to blow icicles, where people struggled to get back to
their NeoHomes to escape storms, where a sign read "Terror Mountain." The Snow
Faerie carried me into a small hut, which was colder inside than it was outside.
She told me that she had seen me through the window while she scattered snowflakes,
and wanted me as a pet. She took a white paintbrush from a shelf and painted
me with one sweep.
"Now you are an Ice Aisha."
I did not want to stay with the Snow Faerie in that icy place, so I ran out
of the house and tried to climb down the jagged mountain. Luckily for me the
Light Faerie had heard of my kidnap and chased after the Snow Faerie. Despite
the harsh weather she had arrived, and she picked me up with her warm glowing
arms and flew away, with the Snow Faerie screeching close behind. We flew for
miles and miles, even further than the Snow Faerie had carried me. It grew warmer
and warmer, and the Snow Faerie flew slower and slower while the Light Faerie
flew faster and faster. Finally, the Snow Faerie gave one last blood-freezing
shriek and turned back towards her wintry artic home. The Light Faerie now slowed
down and I was able to enjoy the sunshine, which grew warmer by the minute.
Then I saw the place of my dreams, the desert where the sun always shone. My
radiant rescuer set me down by a sand dune, and I immediately set off to explore
my new surroundings. There were lots of games that visitors to the desert could
play. There was a place that sold pets for pets. I would have loved one, but
I was nobody's pet, just a homeless Aisha. I saw a shop selling food and that
reminded me how hungry I was, I hadn't swallowed anything since early this morning,
and it was now evening. I then saw a fruit machine game.
"YES! Yes, I've won!" Somebody was yelling. "2,500 Neopoints!"
"And a Cheops
Plant, don't forget," said the man in charge of the fruit machine.
"Oh, forget that," said the girl. "Here little Aisha, have a Cheops Plant!"
She threw me the juicy red berry, and I chewed it gratefully. "Hey Sparkle!"
The winner was calling to a taller girl. "Take this Aisha to the pound, will
"OK," said Sparkle, and came over. She picked me up, but when she looked into
my eyes she decided she couldn't give me away. "I'm going to keep you," she
said. She took me home to her little NeoHome back in Neopia Central, near where
I started. She gave me a name, and even found out my history so she knew how
old I was. Back at her NeoHome there was a green Chia, a little bit younger
than I was. She told me that I was called Hizar0o and the Chia was Minlar0o.
She fed me a White Chocolate Aisha and Banana Milkshake, and then she put me
to bed, where I slept warmly, knowing that I'd wake up just as warm the next
morning, and every morning after that.