MYSTERY ISLAND: SOMETIME IN THE PAST
My story begins in the most unlikely of places.
A damp, dank cave in the middle of a stormy Autumn afternoon on Mystery Island.
Nor does not start in a particularly stupendous, colossal, fantastic way as
you might expect. Then what exactly does my story have to offer? Stay a while,
my friend. Do not be discouraged. Listen to what I have to tell you, and perhaps,
you'll remember this story long enough to turn it into a legend itself...
The weather outside was atrocious. The Wind
and Rain thrashed the stone roof like the hammers of Thor. They were persistent
in trying to make the night of the occupant as uncomfortable as humanly possible,
never resting to catch a breath or build energy for a harder blow. That just
came naturally to the Wind and the Rain. Practice, I suppose. A million, billion
years of practice. If the ostentatious art of making people feel uncomfortable
hadn't been mastered then, well, I doubt it ever will be.
Two cracks appeared in the roof of the cave
and began to race each other down the side of the wall to see who would be the
first to split the rock. It didn't matter much. Neither of them won, since water
started to gush into the cave like a miniature waterfall before either crack
had reached the finish line. The Wind and Rain threw back their heads of ambience
and let out a laughter that echoed all the way around Mystery Island. The Wind
and Rain bent their heads down close to the crack in the cave wall and laughed
long and loud, mocking the cave's occupant.
But the old Island mystic sat unscathed by the
horrendous weather outside. He was too busy to deal with the fun and games of
the elements. He just sat in the freezing cold wearing a loincloth and meditated.
The Island Mystic had a responsibility in his own community. If anything bad
was gonna happen, he'd know about it, and warn people before it even came to
pass. For you see, he was a psychic. A clairvoyant. He could see events before
they happened. And something was currently troubling him, as he sat cross-legged
on a cold stone chair.
Something was clouding his thoughts. Clouding
his mind. Making him...uncomfortable. Wary. Afraid. This was not the first time
he had experienced this feeling. But never on this scale. The last time it happened,
his tribe was attacked by a rival tribe on Demelza Hill. Never on this scale.
He shuddered. What in Neopia could be worse than that? He closed his eyes and
tensed the muscles on his brow, blocking out the scornful laughter of the elements.
The crudely constructed door to the cave burst
open quite suddenly. The form of a large and regal-looking Eyrie dragged himself
through the shadows and into the light so the Mystic could see his face. The
Island Mystic did not open his eyes, but still responded: "Hello my friend.
Is the Clan ready to migrate?"
The magnificent Eyrie omitted a kind of nervous
laughter and eyed the Mystic cautiously. "Yes. I would like to apologise. We
cannot wait for your prediction to come to us. One more day like this and we
will never leave the island for the Winter. We'll be stuck here, unable to fly.
Our race can stand a lot of punishment from the elements, but not as much as
The Eyrie stepped forward, lowering his rasping
"They are trying to trick you. The elements,
I mean. Trying to fool you. It's just a game of theirs; they can sense your
feelings and emotions, and are getting pleasure out of interrupting your vision.
I have heard them try to interrupt your aura before, but they've never needed
to try this hard. What's wrong?"
The Island Mystic slowly opened his eyes to
make eye contact with his old friend. He unfurled himself from a cocoon-like
status and sat openly on the stone chair.
"I really do not know. But this feels odd. Very
odd indeed. The elements shouldn't need to try this hard. But they too know
that something is up -"
The Mystic was interrupted by a sharp pain in
his forehead. He squinted and covered his eyes. An image of a running Eyrie.
Blue flashes. And a pair of big, blood red eyes. He turned to meet the expression
of anguish on his friend's face. Eye contact. Yet again. More Eyries running
to the battle. A dark, cackling figure.
The Eyrie patted his back with a huge paw to
wake him up from the trance. The Mystic blinked and squinted up at the Eyrie.
"Are you all right?"
"Yes. I'm fine. I am used to it."
He sighed, his wingtips glittering silver in
the dull light. "Thank goodness. But now I must stress that we must go. Travel
to the village immediately to seek help, or I shall be forced to accompany you."
The Mystic laughed through his nose and said,
"Thank you. I'll do that. Soon."
The Eyrie shuffled his feet impatiently, eager
to rejoin his Clan for the annual migration. "I really am sorry, you know. We
have to go. I came here to say goodbye. No. See you soon. It's never goodbye."
By this time the Island Mystic had hopped back
onto the rock and was again sitting, cross-legged arms stretched in a meditation.
His expression was sombre, melancholy, dejected. The Eyrie recognised this and
slunk out of the cave, propping the wooden door back against the grotto entrance
on the way out.
"Goodbye," whispered the Mystic as the shadow
of his friend cast across the floor sloped away and gently out of sight.
The Wind and the Rain roared in closure, turning
the dead of the night into a fiasco of dreadful wails and moans. The trees and
wild river joined in the chorus, groaning with all their might and rushing so
fast past the rocks and streams that should any man have been present, they
would have sworn the river was screaming at him. Clouding his subconscious further.
Joining the Wind and Rain in playing their cruel game. But the Mystic just laughed
at them. He laughed and closed his eyes again. He laughed when they blew the
door across the cavern, where it shattered in a torrent of splinters on the
wall behind him. Though they were succeeding in interrupting his concentration,
he didn't show it. His mind was alive. Thoughts buzzing. Images of the future
flashing before him. But nothing was making sense. Who was that there? And them?
What does that mean? These elements. All these darn elements. Why won't they
The elements screamed at him one last time...and
stopped quite suddenly. The Island Mystic simply smiled and continued his meditation.
MYSTERY ISLAND: PRESENT DAY
The fuzzy blue creature shuffled around in the
darkness, obviously knowing what he was doing. The air was moist and stifling,
not exactly a homely environment. The ground felt sticky under his paws and
he missed the liberating feeling of water sweeping through his fur as he swam
through sparkling creeks...but he couldn't leave. He was being forced to work.
He looked sadly at the metal cuffs that imprisoned him, digging into his fur,
cutting into his skin. Several large figures dressed in black loomed over him,
all wearing pendants of a single black tooth on yellow chains, watching his
"Hurry up, gramps," growled one of
the figures, a smaller one, with a malevolent kind of aura about him. The Professor
grumbled and continued his work.
His eyes narrowed.
A little way beyond, two figures sat deep in
the darkness, scanning the area for movement. Walls dark and moist, not good
for hooves and webbed feet. The exit was right on the other side, past the party,
so they couldn't escape and call for backup. But the famous Professor Chesterpot
was there, at least! The three-day siege following his kidnapping from his office
was finally coming to an end - if they could rescue him, that is.
The smaller, squatter one recognised the explorer
suddenly and whispered excitedly to his colleague. "That's him! That's definitely
him! We've got 'im Mono--"
The taller of the two clamped a strong hoof
onto his beak. The smallest dark-clad individual spun round sharply. His eyes
narrowed, but his attentions were diverted suddenly by a gasp and grunt from
one of the huge kidnappers.
"Shut up, Virgil!" he muttered. "Didn't they
teach you anything in the NSPA?"
Virgil whimpered and shuddered, nodding his
head frantically. The Uni sighed and let him go. Virgil, the feisty spy-in-training,
hiccupped a little, but didn't let that faze him. He went on rummaging about
in a bag full of gadgets. The Uni watched as his cheeky face and round, bulbous
eyes rose from the bag, beak stretched into a wide grin.
"You got it?"
"Yup." He drew out a tiny, tiny satchel and
MonoKeras groaned. "You have got to be kidding.
You call yourselves the best investigation and exploration department in the
county? And all you can come up with is a remote tracking device? They use those
in child toys nowadays!"
Virgil shot him a poisonous look. "Remote control,
my tail!" He cupped his wing over his beak and whispered, "Creepy? Here Creepy!"
A delicate-looking Spyder crept stealthily along
the fungus-covered walls and sat at his master's feet. MonoKeras shuddered.
"A Spyder? What're you doin' hanging around
with one of those?"
Virgil ignored his partner and attached the
satchel firmly to Creepy's back, where it sat, snugly. "Just watch. Okay Creepy,
scale the perimeter, and that's an order!"
To MonoKeras' surprise the spooky little Petpet
braced himself up and raised two of his eight legs in a kind of salute, then
tensed his long legs and sprinted away - straight towards the party!
MonoKeras started up in panic. "Are you mad,
you stupid Bruce? You're gonna give away our position!!"
Virgil just straightened his red hat and grinned
inanely. "Don't you have that much confidence in me? Just watch."
Creepy hurdled along the floor like an Olympic
sprinter, his legs motoring Road Runner-style, then skidded a sharp turn to
avoid the party of Neopets crowded around the Professor. He stopped just outside
the party and scratched at the ground. The eyes of one of the large kidnappers
flickered, and turned towards Creepy. MonoKeras felt his heart jump to his throat.
That was it. They were done for. And that thick Bruce was still grinning like
Creepy's eyes were still glowing bright red
against the darkness. Another kidnapper turned to it and queried the first,
who hadn't taken his eyes off the Petpet.
"Dat? Dat fing o'er der?"
"Oh. S'nuttin. Spyder, I fink." They turned
back to their work.
MonoKeras felt like he could breathe again!
"How...how did you?..." he gasped to Virgil.
The Bruce chuckled. "Manipulating the subconscious
minds of the stupid, as I call it. These guys aren't smart enough to imagine
that we could be capable of sending a Spyder (of all things) to do the work
for us! Once one figures out what Creepy is, the rest take it for granted that
he's right and ignore Creepy, allowing him to carry out his evil deeds unnoticed.
And besides, Petpets always make the best spies when it comes down to it. Some
are even willing to lay down their lives for the ones they love."
"Man, they never taught us that in the force!"
MonoKeras thought about this comment, then turned back to the action.
"Hey, look at him go!"
Creepy was darting around the perimeter of the
cavern, planting tiny devices in select locations in a circle around the offenders.
He returned shortly, grinning up at his master. Virgil petted his head. "Good
"What next then?"
"Well, we've gotta be ready for action as soon
as I press this button here. You know what to do?"
MonoKeras flexed his muscles and smirked. "Oh
"Okay." Virgil was sweating with anxiety. If
this mission fails, they're dead. What's worse, he'd never stand a chance at
becoming Top Spy, and probably never even get his spying license! He started
the countdown "Three...two...one..." and pressed the button.
To be continued...
Author's Note: Who are these black hooded figures, and what do they want with
Professor Chesterpot? You'll find out...in the next chapter.
Many thanks to Scriptfox for giving me his permission to use MonoKeras--you
have my eternal gratitude! *wink*
To conclude, I am an aspiring author. Like all aspiring authors, I always
welcome compliments, criticisms or any ramblings about my work. So if you have
any comment to make, Neomail
me--I'd love to get some feedback.