Alagernil waited patiently on the front porch for his owner to return from
grocery shopping. He rocked back and forth, watching the clouds go by, his tail
swinging lazily over the edge of the seat. He was about to fall asleep when
a small yellow Skeith caught his eye. He sat up as he watched the young NeoPet
chase and torture a frightened Spoppy. The Skeith would pounce on her victim,
bare her sharp teeth, then kick the PetPet away with a crippling force. The
Spoppy yelped in its small voice and hopped as fast as it could, but was no
match for its owner.
Alagernil frowned darkly and leapt out of his chair, his tail balancing him
as he rushed toward the scene. The Skeith paused in her fun and blinked at the
angered Mynci, then sat down on the pavement. She placed a paw over the struggling
Spoppy to keep it from escaping. "Yes?" She said innocently with a slight growl
to her voice. "May I help you?" She watched attentively as Alagernil frowned
more deeply and sat down in front of her. His tail twitched angrily.
"What benefit do you get out of torturing pets that are weaker than you?"
he snarled, crossing his arms in front of his chest.
The Skeith shrugged. "It's all in fun. Besides, I'm probably just going to
end up eating it, anyway, so why not play with my food?" The Spoppy opened its
eyes wide and squeaked frantically. She grinned, and Alagernil wrinkled his
nose in disgust. He opened his mouth to scold her, but, realising that he was
not much older than she, instead sat back on his tail and watched her calmly.
"I think you should hear a story..." he said slowly. The Skeith blinked, then
sat down willingly. Alagernil smiled wryly.
"About 200 years ago there lived a great hunter, a blue Lupe called Sirithrun.
This name was known throughout Neopia as the most fearless and triumphant of
all the hunter tribes, and Sirithrun was widely sought after by Lupe packs in
need of food. He was praised for saving his people from death and starvation,
but there lived in him a darker side that desired nothing more than to flaunt
his superiority. He looked down on all the Pets who could not hunt as well as
he could, and boasted about his amazing feats every chance he got. Worst of
all, however, was his hatred for Chias.
"These were his primary prey when he hunted, but he did not merely track and
capture them. When he found a Chia, Sirithrun would command his fellow hunters
to surround it, then slowly close in on the unsuspecting victim. He would begin
to growl, setting the Chia on the defence, then pounce on it. When the poor
pet was caught beneath his paws, scared almost to death, he would step off of
it and snap his teeth, sending the Chia running incredibly fast for its chubby
bulk. It would then be cut off by the other members of the team, snarling and
biting viciously at the innocent Chia. Finally, it would stand still and shiver,
awaiting its fate. A fate which would soon be given it.
"And so the fun with Chias continued, and Sirithrun basked in the glory he
received in return. But one particular Earth Faerie glared down on him with
hateful distaste for the injustice he placed upon all Chias. She had an idea
brewing... one that would teach him a lesson he would never forget.
"After a morning hunt, Sirithrun separated from his pack to get a drink of
water from a stream. As he lapped at the cool water he saw the reflection of
the Earth Faerie. He looked up and stepped back, bewildered, staring at the
faerie. She smiled sweetly. 'Sirithrun, you look worn out!' She took a strange
bottle from behind her and held it out to him. 'Here, drink this. You'll feel
better than new!'
"Sirithrun grinned and took the bottle, gulping down the blue liquid without
a second thought. The Earth Faerie smirked. 'This is for all the pain and anguish
you have caused.'
"The Lupe blinked with confusion, then winced as a strange feeling gurgled
in his stomach. He began to shrink rapidly, his tail, muzzle, and ears disappeared,
and his fur shortened considerably. His legs diminished into almost nothing,
and his breathing became concentrated into his mouth alone, for lack of a nose.
His eyes opened wide as he realised what had happened.
"'I'm a... a... CHIA!' he yelled in disbelief, though his voice was a bit
smaller than it would normally be. The Earth Faerie only giggled softly and
disappeared. Sirithrun immediately began to panic. He was afraid to brave the
forest alone as a defenceless Chia, but his pride kept him from going back to
the Lupe pack to explain his situation. He decided to walk around until he found
his hunting partners. They would know what to do, right?
"A soft growl suddenly came from the bushes, and Sirithrun stopped in his
excursion. A pair of golden eyes shone through the shadows, followed by a louder
snarl. The Lupe leapt from the bushes before he could react and its large paws
pinned him to the ground. Sirithrun's eyes opened wide, and he cried out in
fear. 'Stop, you fool! It's me, Sirithrun! Your leader!' The Lupe smirked coldly
and kicked the Chia away from him.
"'If you're Sirithrun, then I'm the king of Sakhmet,' was the Lupe's reply.
Thoroughly frightened, Sirithrun ran toward the bushes, only to be confronted
by three other members of the pack.
"'Please, stop! I... I order you!' he cried, but only received the bright
glare of his comrades' teeth. He backed up, shaking violently with fear, then
leapt over the backs of the Lupes and ran into the shadows of the woods. As
he continued to run he could always hear the Lupes at his heels, though they
had given up and gone back to the village. He ran until the end of his days,
saying over and over, 'I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry...' Some say the echo
of his words still sounds in those trees."
As Alagernil fell silent, the young Skeith continued to blink at him. Realising
the story was over, she shook her head. "So that's it? He was a Chia forever?"
"So what do you think? Have you learned your lesson?" the Mynci said carefully.
The Skeith looked down at her paw, which was now empty. She scowled. "I think
my Spoppy got away." She glared at him, then grinned. "You know, I've had Mynci
on a Stick before... wasn't half bad." Alagernil's eyes opened wide and he leapt
back toward his home while the Skeith turned and walked sulkily down the street.
He reached the porch and looked after her, shaking his head.
"Some pets will never be able to rebel against their instincts..." He looked
down and uncoiled his tail, then smiled down at the Spoppy. He took it into
his arms and walked toward the door.