Note from the author: All of this happened at the end of Year 2. We are
still friends with the person mentioned and she did indeed give Alkuna back
to us. Also, I didn't buy my Lupe back. The owner who gave her back never asked
for money. I gave her the items and the NP because I was grateful.
Hi again, it's me, Mercolagos. Anyway, to refresh memories, I am a blue Gelert
and I live with my owner Al'Kuna, and the Lupe named after her, Alkuna. Now
there are two new members of the group. But you'll hear about them in a little
We had come a long way since I had joined the family. We had lots of NP in
the bank thanks to all our hard work in the Games area of Neopia's mainland.
Careful spending made sure that we had plenty by the time the holidays arrived.
It was Christmas Eve when it all started. Everyone was really excited because
our owner had hinted that she got us all something very special. Vhai, a red
Poogle and the youngest of the group, LaCody, a red Gelert who is sort of an
adopted younger sister, and Alkuna and I had trouble sleeping that night. We
stayed up late, whispering to each other and wondering what our owner had gotten
for us. But we eventually drifted off to sleep. The next morning, we jumped
up bright and early and raced into the front room of our house. Our owner smiled
and handed us each a chocolate treat and milk for breakfast. This excited us,
because we rarely got to eat junk food so early in the day.
When we had finished, Al'Kuna began handing out presents. I eagerly tore open
my first present and was astounded to see a faerie in a jar. The others gave
excited squeals as they too opened their presents. We had each gotten a complete
set of faeries to give us abilities. I opened all the jars and gave a little
dance as I was blessed with all six abilities. LaCody and Alkuna were excitedly
testing out their abilities. I turned to see how little Vhai was doing.
He was staring at a Dark Faerie and crying. The faerie shook her head at him
and flew off. "It's not fair!" he cried, "One level short! Just one level…"
Poor little guy. He was the youngest of the group, and only at level one. He
was really a smart little Poogle, just not experienced.
Al'Kuna walked over and hugged him, "Awww, don't cry Vhai. Look, I've just
got a few underwater map pieces left to go. When I turn them in, everyone will
go up two levels. Then you can open the rest of your faerie jars. I'll buy you
another Dark Faerie."
On New Year's Eve, we took a trip in a submarine down to Maraqua to turn in
the underwater map pieces. Al'Kuna put the last map piece in place and smiled
at all of us, "Ready?"
"Ready!" we all shouted.
Al'Kuna pushed the button under the board. The map pieces glowed, and then
vanished. Golden light filtered into the room and surrounded us. I grew in size
just a little bit and felt myself becoming stronger. Growling playfully, I strutted
over to Alkuna and shoved her with my shoulder. She of course, out weighed me
and was a lot stronger, but she staggered, putting on a comical look and acting
as if I had knocked her senseless. LaCody laughed and pounced on me, growling
and acting tough. We rolled across the floor, wrestling and yapping and having
a great time. Little Vhai, wanting in on the fun, charged in.
He tackled Alkuna, which was amusing to see: a little Poogle wrestling with
a powerful Lupe Alkuna played along, rolling over on her back and letting him
Al'Kuna smiled and knelt down. "OK Vhai, let's have you open your jars."
We all watched, smiling, as each faerie blessed Vhai. As the last faerie vanished
with a little *poof*, Vhai did a dance of joy and raced over to get a hug from
Al'Kuna. As she put him down, she turned to us.
"OK guys, here's your New Years Eve treat." She pulled out a bag of Neopoints
and handed them to Alkuna. "There's 800 NP in there, that's 200 for each of
you, remember that. You can spend it however you like, but make sure it's EVEN.
No one gets ignored, all right?" She turned to the rest of us, "Alkuna is the
leader tonight boys and girls. Stay together and stay safe. If you don't think
you can get home alone tonight, call me and I'll pick you up."
We nodded solemnly. Al'Kuna was trusting us, and we wanted to be able to walk
around on our own more often. All four of us celebrated, eating delicious dinners,
dancing and just having fun. When we started getting tired, we headed for home.
Unfortunately, we had to travel through the Spooky Forest to get there. LaCody
and I exchanged glances. Vhai's teeth were chattering and Alkuna was growling
softly. Finally she said to us, "Come on, keep together, stay on the path… and
we should be OK."
I was grateful for our new abilities of night vision, because it was almost
pitch black. LaCody kept twitching and looking around at the glowing red eyes
that stared at us. Nothing bothered us at first, but trouble hit just as we
were leaving the forest. There was a rushing sound, and suddenly a weighted
net dropped from the trees and covered Alkuna. Alkuna struggled, but couldn't
break free any more than we could pull it off of her. She stopped and looked
at each of us, "Merc, I can't get out. Go get Al'Kuna, as fast as your legs
can carry you. LaCody, Vhai, hide. Whoever built this trap will probably come
and check on it soon. You guys have to stay with me, so if I'm taken, you can
tell them where we are…" Al'Kuna's voice faded as I turned and raced home as
fast as my slender legs could carry me.
I found out later that a short time after I left, someone came crashing out
of the underbrush and found Alkuna. "Bah," the stranger snarled, "Another stupid
pet. I try to catch faeries and all I get is a mangy looking mutt of a Lupe."
LaCody whispered to Vhai as they crouched in a hiding place,
"He captures faeries. Maybe he'll let Alkuna go."
"Well hello there…" Balthazar bent down and found the sack with the remaining
Neopoints in it. Balthazar grinned wickedly, "Well well, 120 Neopoints. Enough
to dump you where you won't bother me, and enough to get a drink for me." He
peered through the net and laughed even more unpleasantly, "YOU! The pathetic
annoying Lupe that almost beat me! Oh the irony of this is just too pleasing!
Now to pay you back for those bruises you gave me!"
Vhai jumped to his feet angrily, but LaCody stopped him. "Vhai, we can't fight
Balthazar. He can put a magical faerie in a jar. What do you think he'll do
"But that's Merc's money! And Alkuna can't go to the pound! Someone'll take
her! It's not fair!"
LaCody quickly hushed him and hugged him reassuringly. "We'll get Alkuna free,
don't worry." To herself, LaCody thought, ~Hurry Merc, hurry…~
Alkuna in a net… That image burned in my mind as I charged through bushes
and mud, then lunged though the pet door of our home and practically threw myself
at a shocked Al'Kuna.
"Alkuna…" I panted, exhausted, "Spooky Forest…trap…hurry…" She was on her feet
immediately and we raced back to the Spooky forest. We searched frantically
for several minutes before hearing barking and howling far away.
My ears perked up, "That's LaCody! I know her voice anywhere. Come on!" I could
feel my heart sink as we ran. We were heading in a bad direction. I knew where
we were. We were heading for the Adoption Agency, better known as the Pound.
The thought of Alkuna in one of those tiny cages made me want to howl.
LaCody was pacing outside the doors, whimpering and scratching at it. Vhai
was shouting, "It's not fair! Give her back you big meanie!" at the top of his
We raced up to the doors just as they were shoved roughly open by the kidnapper
himself. LaCody howled and raced into the building to locate Alkuna. Vhai, a
little ball of puppy fury, jumped on Balthazar yelling and biting anything he
could get his teeth into. We all heard LaCody's howl, "She's gone! Somebody
took her!" I looked up and saw the scariest thing in my entire life. Al'Kuna's
face went through grief and anger, wobbling between the two before settling
of absolute fury. In two strides, she covered the distance between herself and
the unfortunate Balthazar. Vhai glanced up, saw her, and bailed ship just as
Al'Kuna reached him,
"HOW COULD YOU?!" she yelled at him.
Balthazar landed unconscious on the ground.
"Wow!" Little Vhai squeaked, "I didn't know you knew Karate!"
Al'Kuna dusted her hands off and walked through the doors of the Agency, "It
comes in handy sometimes."
Mrs. Worley shook his head at Al'Kuna, "I'm sorry, but it's against our policy
to hand out the names of people who adopt from us. If your display outside is
anything to go on, that Lupe is better off elsewhere. Those other pets probably
would be too."
All three of us turned as one and snarled at her. With great effort, Al'Kuna
straightened and turned away from the stern lady,
"I see. Thank you for nothing."
The next four days were an agony. We searched desperately for Alkuna. No one
had seen her. Several friends joined in the search attempt. Al'Kuna grew listless
as time wore on. Several times I saw her crying. I knew how she felt. It wasn't
too likely that anyone would be kind enough to give up a NeoPet they had spent
so much money for. The odds were pretty bad.
SilverBlur and his owner walked into a drink shop to buy a treat. He doubted
very much that this would cheer him up, considering that his girlfriend, Alkuna,
was missing. Silver's tail hung low and he just sighed and looked around the
shop, not paying much attention to the tempting looking slushies. He glanced
at a sign posted on the wall and nearly crashed into a display in shock, "Alkuna!"
There, on the sign, was Alkuna's picture and the words, "Found: Blue, level
five, female Lupe Goes by the name Alkuna. Contact manager for more details."
SilverBlur bounded over to his owner and half tackled her, "Alkuna! She's here!
Look at the notice!" He half dragged her across the store to where the sign
was posted. The storekeeper, an elf of some sort, looked up at them then at
the sign, and then slipped into the back of the store. A few minutes later,
a younger human walked out and smiled.
"Hi, I'm the manager of this store. Little Dude said that you know this Lupe?"
Silverblur's owner nodded, "She's my friend's first NeoPet." Silver growled
softly and his owner amended, "My friend's first NeoPet, and SilverBlur's girlfriend."
"Better," Silver snorted, then headed toward the back of the store to see if
Alkuna was there.
The store manager blocked his path, "Whoa there, tall and furry. I am not convinced
that you know her."
Before SilverBlur could get in a really foul mood, she turned toward the back
of the store and whistled, "Alkuna, come here please." Alkuna trotted into sight,
froze, and then charged across the floor to Silver. Both were laughing and crying
and hugging each other.
The manager smiled kindly, walked over to the store's till and withdrew a fistful
of NP. "OK, you've convinced me. Come on, we'll both go to the Adoption Agency
and trade off. Might as well make it official."
Silver's owner accessed Al'Kuna's bank account and withdrew enough money to
adopt Alkuna. In just a few minutes, Alkuna belonged to her family once again.
"Come on," she smiled at them, "Let's get you home." All the while on the
path to our home, Alkuna and Silver talked earnestly. SilverBlur wanted to go
to the scene of Alkuna's kidnapping so he could get Balthazar's scent and add
a little damage of his own.
Al'Kuna answered the door and stared at Alkuna for only a second before dropping
to her knees and hugging her Lupe tightly. The rest of us were no less dramatic
in our greeting her.
When she had composed herself a little, Al'Kuna asked her friend to show her
the store where Alkuna had been. We talked to the store owner and found that
she had cared for Alkuna very well, feeding and grooming her. The story came
out that Alkuna had been taken by another person, but had dumped her back in
the pound a few days later when Alkuna had first begged, then demanded to be
let go. Then the store manager had found Alkuna, taken her in and cleaned her
up. When she had heard Alkuna's story, she decided to put notices up everywhere.
Al'Kuna talked with the store manager, wanting to pay her back for the money
she had spent taking care of Alkuna. As soon as they had settled on a price,
Al'Kuna promptly bought the most expensive slushies to give to all of us, which
totaled up to more than twice what the store owner had paid. Then she gave the
store owner two codestones to help train her other pets.
"Oh my gosh, thank you!" She stared at them, knowing full well how expensive
Al'Kuna smiled at her, "Hey, my chances of ever getting Alkuna back were very
slim. She is worth much more to me than what you asked for. These codestones
She smiled at me, "Oh no Merc, you all proved to be perfectly capable of working
things out on your own. You all did a wonderful job that night. All you need
is a little more training so you can fight when you need to. If you are willing
to train hard, you can go out on your own again." She knelt in front of me and
scratched me behind the ears, "Maybe if you guys get strong enough, you can
go out individually on your own. What do you think?"
I grinned at her. Behind me, I heard LaCody bark, "Well then let's start training!
I'm ready, how about you?"
"Yeah, I wanna be the one to beat up that Meanie the next time I see him!"
Vhai shadowboxed an all out brawl that he planned to do to Balthazar. "Let's
show him he can't mess with the Al'Kuna pack!" Alkuna bared her teeth.
I couldn't agree more. We had a new, and very good friend, and we were all
together again. It was the perfect gift.