Aidhru wasn't nervous.
She was just terribly, terribly alert.
It was Drak's fault anyway.
Telling her that story.
Drak had been baby-sitting her and Sesebia when the blackout had hit. Aidhru
screamed loudly. She hated the dark - always had. Drak thought Aidhru was a
baby, being the youngest in the family. But then, Drak was a typical eldest
child. He believed that the sun shone out from the ground he stood on.
"Oh shut up Ade," he snapped. Sesebia grinned in the dark. Ade was a glowing
Wocky - albeit a slightly fuzzy one. She still had a baby coat and so her glowing
fur didn't offer much light in the dark. She had met fully-grown glowing Wocky's
and they shone brighter than the sun. They looked lovely. Ade thought she looked
like something that had stood too near a plug socket when they were younger.
"Tell us a story," Sesebia begged. She knew it annoyed Ade. Ses was like that
- a typical brat.
"OK," Drak said, grinning evilly in the dark. "I'll tell you a good one."
"Not scary," Ade whimpered.
"Yes! Scary!" Ses demanded indignantly.
"I'll tell you the best one I know," Drak said. "I heard it off a friend
of a friend," Ade gulped. "Ever heard of the Shadow Usul?"
"No," Ade stammered, feeling the fur on the back of her neck rise.
"Nor had Audil," Drak solemnly said.
"Ad... Ad... Audil?" Ade stammered.
"Audil," Drak repeated.
Audil was a cloud Kacheek. A very smart cloud Kacheek for he was always reading
books. His owner painted him cloud because of it.
"Always have your head in a cloud," she's often say, laughing cheerfully.
But alas, Audil never paid attention in class. Perhaps he would still be in
Neopia if he had. For he found it better to daydream than listen to the teacher.
It was understandable, Mrs Fuzz droned on like a broken vacuum cleaner - but
sometimes she had something important to say.
"I need to tell you something important class," she said. Everyone listened,
except Audil, caught in a fantastic daydream about what he could be eating.
"More people are going to the Neopets Monitors - attack on small pets. Everyone
saying it's the work of the shadow Usul. I've been told to give you a few simple
precautions on how to prevent such an attack."
The room was silent - people were holding their breath without realising it.
"The Shadow Usul only appears at night, and has mainly been spotted in and
around Neopia Central. What her motives are we have no idea, but we suggest
you keep your wits about you," she said gravely. "Make sure the whole room is
illuminated. The shadow Usul can only move in the shadows. She cannot stand
in the light."
"She?" a small Kau asked. "You mean it's a girl."
"Was a girl," Mrs Fuzz said in an unusually solemn voice. "No one knows
quite how she became. Many believe she was a tragic accident in Doctor Sloth's
experiment, others believe she was a shadow Usul gone bad."
"So to stop her, we just have to keep out lights on?" the Kau persisted. "Can't
be much of a villain, scared of the light!" A few people laughed nervously.
"Many have fallen victim to her, Timothy. Don't laugh at the unknown," Mrs
Fuzz said quietly. The whole room fell into an uneasy silence. After a few minutes,
Mrs Fuzz broke it. Speaking brightly, she said,
"Right, OK Audil. If I have four Apples and I gave you one, how many Apples
do I have left?"
Audil was tired that night. He finished his homework and Neomailed Timothy,
asking him about Mrs Fuzz's talk, seeing how he didn't hear it. He would never
read the reply...
"Night mum!" he yelled down the stairs. He didn't hear a reply. Perhaps
she's asleep, he thought.
He climbed into bed and switched off the light. The room plunged into darkness.
Shadows fell everywhere and the sound of trees swishing in the wind echoed around
the room. Audil yawned loudly.
At first he couldn't hear it. Just the pitter-patter of small feet. He could
only just make it out at first. But then he heard breathing. The long, raspy
breath, as thought someone or something was drawing the air out of the room.
"Audil," a voice said. It sent shivers down Audil's spine. It was the
kind of voice you heard in nightmares, the voice that was solely evil. He gulped.
"Mu... Mum?" he stammered quietly.
"Guess again Audil," the voice said. It was almost a singsong of evil.
"Timmy?" He guessed, knowing full well it wasn't.
"Tut tut Audil. I thought you were smarter than that," the voice said.
A long, cold draught blew through the room and a small beam of moonlight illuminated
the shape of a Usul, before it moved swiftly into the shadows.
Audil's frightened yells could be heard throughout the house. But when his
owner ran into his room, only the slight swinging of his curtains gave any sign
of movement. The bed covers were pulled back and the window was open. But no
one could be seen outside...
"And no one ever saw Audil again," Drak finished.
"Is... is that true?" Ade stammered.
Drak nodded solemnly. "Every bit," she said.
A bang on the door made them all jump. The turned around and stared guiltily
at their owner, DM.
"What have you been up to?" She asked, laughing at their red faces.
"N... N... Nothing much," Ade stammered. She looked pale. Even Drak looked slightly
The lights flickered slightly and flickered back on. Suddenly, the living
room didn't look too frightening anymore. Smiling, all three trouped upstairs
to bed. DM came into Ade's room to tuck her in.
Saying goodnight, DM went to turn the lights out.
"WAIT!" Ade called. DM turned round. "I think I'll sleep with the lights on
tonight DM," Ade said, smiling nervously. DM shrugged and then smiled before
Just before Ade fell asleep, she could have sworn she heard a voice say
"You know Ade, sometimes fairy tales are true."
Author's Note: This story isn't true. Any references to any other characters
except Aidhru, Sesebia, Drakona14 or DM are purely coincidental. Feel free to
me, I like Neomails, but go easy on the Neofriend stuff. I hope you enjoyed