I returned home from my daily trip to the stock market with a smug grin. I
had also passed by Sabreur's house, and seen Infernus's new look, fire. That
had pretty much made up my mind. Un-eairkagh and Terraile greeted me happily,
and I made my way and collapsed on the living room couch. The two girls had
been living with us for a week, and had settled in just fine. MoonFall was even
loosing most of her formality, and the transformation in Terraile was incredible.
She was even using slang now.
"What's up?" Un-eairkagh asked immediately.
"We now have enough Neopoints to buy one paint brush," I said proudly.
The two let out cheers, and Un-eairkagh leaped into the air, narrowly missing
the coffee table.
"So where's Aldrai? He's the only one that's not painted."
"Visiting Netsuko. And MoonFalls in her room, pouting."
I blinked in dismay. "When did this start?"
"While you were gone."
I groaned. "Wonderful. So what started this mess?"
I noticed at that point that Un-eairkagh had pulled a disappearing act.
"Ah, let me guess," I said wearily. "Those two got in a fight."
"Why, oh why?" I moaned. "All right, did Un-eairkagh start it?"
"He did," Terraile said, "and, umm, I'll go get Aldrai, and then we can get
him painted, that fine? I'd rather not be around… if you know what I mean,"
"Sure, I'll patch things up here. See if Melody or anyone else wants to come
while you're at it."
She nodded and left the room, and I headed over for Un-eairkagh's. He was
playing with his Flizzardo, DreamWish. At the sound of my steps, he turned around
and faced me guiltily.
"Go apologise," I ordered.
He nodded and trudged up the stairs. Sad, I thought idly, that he's so used
to getting in trouble he knows instantly when I'm going to get on to him. I
scratched DreamWish behind the ears and went back into the kitchen. Terraile
had left a quick note saying that Sabreur couldn't come, but Melody would. She'd
check with Sakuko when she found Aldrai. I waited for MoonFall to reappear,
and she did, followed by a subdued Un-eairkagh who went outside to wait for
Aldrai and Terraile to get back.
"You okay now?" I asked.
The Uni nodded.
"Okay, all better then," I said, also heading for the door. MoonFall smiled
and followed me out.
Melody arrived soon, with all her pets trailing along. The blue Kougra, Padiglione,
bounded off with Un-eairkagh, and the two engaged in a wrestling match underneath
the tree. Lady MoonFall was already good friends with SwiftRiversRunning, the
blue Uni, and FireDarkWolfX, the Gelert, was friends with everyone. Melody took
a spot by me and watched the pets play.
"So, we getting a paint brush?" she asked.
"Yeah, figured it was about time."
She nodded, then her face seemed to cloud over.
"What's wrong?" I asked, worried.
"I don't know. I've just had this bad feeling lately."
My heart seemed to freeze, and I gasped.
"Child_dragon?" I shook my head. "I'm fine, but, I've had a bad feeling too.
The weirdest thing."
Melody bit her lip. "Well, they don't call it women's intuition for nothing.
Let's keep our eyes open," she said, watching her pets fearfully.
I too looked at mine. Where we sensing a threat to our pets? I would die if
something happened to any of them. Terraile arrived just then, along with Aldrai,
breaking my depressing train of thoughts.
"Sakuko couldn't come!" she called out, landing by my feet.
"All right then, let's go."
Un-eairkagh and Padiglione bounded out of the yard, racing to see who could
be the first to reach the marketplace. I smiled and walked along at my own pace
with the rest of the group.
As always, we were one of the biggest groups of people and pets shopping.
Two owners, plus seven pets. I would hate to see the size of all four of us.
After much debate, two attempts at a vote, and more debate, Aldrai decided on
a spotted paint brush. We quickly found one among the massive amounts of shops
(thank you shop wizard!) and headed back for the rainbow pool. Aldrai, after
a bit of encouragement, timidly walked up to the Uni running it, and handed
her the paint brush. She gently stroked it along his back, and his deep red
fur lightened into a light brown with large black spots. He stared at himself
in the pools reflection, admiring his new appearance. I marveled too, Aldrai
looked even cuter with spots. Un-eairkagh couldn't restrain himself any longer.
"You've got spots!" he yelled, and dashed forwards, tossing his brother into
the air and catching him. Aldrai let out a terrified squeak and Un-eairkagh
hastily put him down, glancing guiltily at me.
"You guys are hopeless," I muttered, picking up Aldrai myself and ruffling
"Thank you," he whispered.
"None needed, you're my pet," I whispered back.
I set him down and he wondered back over to the water to admire his new colour
"Umm, child_dragon?" Padiglione asked from behind me. "We've still got some
shopping to do."
I looked over at Melody. "Watcha after?" I asked.
"Books," she said. "Lot's of them."
I shrugged. "I'll come with you then. Hey, you guys!" I called out to my pets.
"Stay here, we'll be right back."
Melody and I headed for the book shop, followed by her three pets. We browsed
the shelves, searching for new titles, preferably ones our pets hadn't read.
I was searching under a stack of Loyal Lupes when an old beat up book
missing it's cover caught my eye. I picked it up and read the title. Neopian
Prophecies. Strange, I thought. Wonder where this came from.
I carefully opened its yellowed pages and read a bit.
A shard from each of the six elements
Buried deep within the darkness
United by the Essence
To pierce the Source and save the soul
Very odd. I flipped back a couple pages, trying to make some sense of this.
I nearly dropped the book at Melody's panicked voice. I hastily shoved it
back on the shelf and rushed up to the front. Her face was absolutely white.
I looked outside, and saw a heap of teeth, claws, and fur that constituted my
pets. A fire Lupe was in the middle, all four of my pets ganging up on him.
But he could still hold his own, and as I watched, horrified and stunned, he
seized Lady MoonFall's wing with his jaws and tore. I felt Melody's hand supporting
me as the world seemed to spin. All I could see was MoonFall screaming and her
blood…. I shook off Melody and changed into my white Eyrie, unable to breath,
or even think. I sprinted towards the fight, and rammed headfirst into the Lupe,
sending him flying. I slid along the ground, my momentum carrying me almost
as far as the Lupe. He leaped to his feet and dove for me, I jumped to my feet,
and he slammed into me, knocking me into the ground. I grunted in pain and then
yelled as his claws ripped at my fur. There was a sudden startled yelp from
him, and he released me and took off running, Un-eairkagh and Terraile chasing
after him, along with all three of Melody's pets. I staggered to my feet, gazing
dumbly at the red spotting my white fur.
"Child_dragon!" Melody said fearfully, kneeling by my side.
"I'm all right," I gasped, feeling a bit light-headed, "go check on MoonFall."
I sat down and concentrated very hard on the ground, feeling my head spin and
desperately tried to not pass out. The dizziness subsided, and I got up to check
on MoonFall. She lay on her side, gasping in pain, but not seriously hurt. Melody
had wrapped the wound with her jacket, and the other pets had gathered around,
afraid and unsure of what to do.
"We need a healing potion," I said, close to tears. Inside, my heart was twisted
into a knot, fear for my pets eating me up. So this is what my parents felt,
I thought in a detached portion of my mind, when I cut my knee up real bad.
"I'll get one," Terraile volunteered, and prepared to take off.
"Don't bother," a new voice said, and I looked up at a Moehog and her owner.
He dug through his backpack and pulled out a glass bottle.
"Thank you so much!" I said, immensely relieved.
"No problem, what happened anyway?"
"Don't know exactly," FireDarkWolfX muttered as I helped MoonFall drink the
potion. The blood stopped flowing and magically, the skin knit itself back together.
She stood up, and flapped her wings a couple times, making sure they were all
"A little sore, but otherwise, fine," she said, then glanced at me.
"Oh, I'm fine," I said, looking at the red spots around my shoulder. "See,
very shallow, they've already stopped bleeding."
"Either way, they've got to be taken care of," Melody said firmly. "We're
going to the healing springs."
The Healing Springs Faerie recognised me and the rest of the pets. She "tsked"
over my scratches, and with a couple words, healed them completely.
"Now shift back to human," she ordered.
I complied, and glanced at my shoulder. The shirt was torn in several places,
and a couple thin scars along my forearm could be seen.
"Best I could do, if you'd gotten here faster, there would be no trace," she
"Yeah, but I was injured as an Eyrie," I said, slightly confused.
"But you're still the same person. I'd be more careful, if I were you."
I sighed and fingered the torn places, absently noting that this shirt was
ruined. Which was too bad, as I rather liked it.
Aldrai was extremely withdrawn on the way home, his eyes huge and frightened.
I carried him all the way back, fearing that this sudden outburst of violence
may of somehow reminded him of his mother. He'd been doing so well, and now
I was scared that he'd regress after this. Melody didn't come to my house, but
took her pets and went home, asking that I call her if I figured out what happened
or I needed help. My pets all gathered in the living room, sensing that an explanation
was in order. "Un-eairkagh started it," Terraile said, and the Eyrie hung his
head. "He was making fun of the Lupe, and he insulted us and you. So Un-eairkagh
snapped at him, and Aldrai stepped in to make them quit."
The Zafara burrowed his head into my arms.
"And the Lupe cuffed Aldrai," MoonFall continued, "so we jumped him."
I stared at them all in dismay.
"I can't believe this," I said. "Un-eairkagh, what on earth could posses you
to go around picking fights?!" I said, furious. "I though I'd taught you better
than that! Your idiocy resulted in MoonFall being injured, and you're lucky
it wasn't worse!"
He backed away, too scared and ashamed to look me in the eyes.
"Just go to your room," I said, suddenly very tired, "and don't come out.
All of you, go. I don't want to see you at all tonight, Un-eairkagh."
They left, all three crying. Aldrai was crying too, and I stroked his fur
"It's okay, you're safe now," I said softly.
"That's not it," he sniffled.
I looked him in the eyes, confused. "Then what?"
He burst into tears, and I wondered what could of upset him this bad. "I started
the fight," he said between sobs.
I stared, then realised what he meant. "No, no, it's not your fault. You were
just trying to stop them, you were doing the right thing. Un-eairkagh…"
"NO!" he shouted, and glared at me. "Un-eairkagh and the girls were lying.
They agreed to make up this story so I wouldn't get in trouble. I don't know
what happened, but when I saw this Lupe, I, I, saw my mother… and I heard her
begging them to leave me alone again…."
He shuddered, and continued talking.
"And something just snapped. I was so mad, so mad that I couldn't do anything
to save her, and that this pet had destroyed my life, and I just leaped onto
his back and started biting for his throat. I wanted to hurt him," he said,
I hugged him close, tears streaking my cheeks, and wondered what I was to
do next. We sat there for the longest time, and then Aldrai's breathing became
slow and regular, he had fallen asleep. I carried him to his bed and shut the
door behind me, then sat down in the hallway and cried. There was a deep weight
on my heart, the pain of seeing Aldrai suffer for his childhood and my pets
willingness to sacrifice themselves to protect him pierced me through, and I
wondered if I was worthy of being the owner of those four. Un-eairkagh must
of heard me crying, for I felt his paw on my shoulder. I turned and hugged him
"You three are the bravest pets in all of Neopia," I said, "and I'm proud
The next couple days were strange ones, to say the least. Sakuko and Netsuko
visited, and the two Zafaras had a long talk in the backyard. All the pets seemed
to be doing fine, they were all very watchful of Aldrai. Sabreur was furious,
and ranted and raved up and down his house, fortunately all the other pets weren't
there to hear, about this fire Lupe. I feel sorry for the thing if those two
ever find him, almost. Melody took the events with her usual attitude, displaying
a grace and calm that I wished I possessed. Me, I survived, as I always do.
But that nagging feeling deep in the back of my mind told me that things were
not going to get better, indeed, they were going to get much worse.
To be continued...
Feel free to Neomail me, I encourage it. I like feedback. Sabreur is really my
brother, you can Neomail him also, though I ask you to go easy on that. He's in
college right now, and I'd rather not have him mad at me for getting a ton of
Battledome challenges, etc. Melody is also real, my best friend. She's in college
too, her NeoPets name is horngodess, but I wouldn't suggest bugging her, she has
a very demanding major and hardly any free time. Sakuko is also real, she's a
really nice person.