Pelbert the Poogle looked up at his owner with his new
blue button eyes, he'd just been painted plushie. "Aww, how cute!" his owner
cooed and picked him up. Walking away from the Rainbow Pool, Pelbert couldn't
help but notice the admiring glances, or hear the people tell his owner how
very lucky they were. If they were all happy, why shouldn't he be? But inside
he wasn't too sure he liked his new look.
Back home, his owner sat him on the floor and
he tried to walk around.
"Hey, I can barley move!" he complained.
"The paint brushes only affect your colouring,
not your stats. See here, it says you are 'super speedy' so you should still
be able to move fast. Give it a another try."
But Pelbert didn't think he could do it. After
a while however, he found he could run around, it was just a different kind
of run. He had to wiggle and bounce to run, and it looked rather comical. His
owner thought it was the cutest thing, and it was kind of fun, like bouncing
in a fun house. He ran around the house saying "Bouncy... bouncy!"
"Why don't you go outside for a while, and I'll
make some cookies." So away he went.
Like some kids will do, he soon forgot what
he was doing and was not careful. He was running up a hill and then rolling
down the other side, when he fell into some bushes. If he hadn't been plushie
coloured, he might have had a small scratch and thought nothing of it. But instead
he got a rather large rip! It was the first time he had gotten ripped, and it
was tragic. Stuffing was poking out of his rip, the tear seemed to get bigger
each time he moved, and more stuffing seemed to come out.
"I'm ripping in half!" he screamed, but was
too far away for his owner to hear him. No one else seemed to be around, so
he would have to make his own way home. "I hope I can make it home in one piece!"
he whimpered. He was running down the street when he suddenly fell into a large
puddle of mud. When he came out, he looked awful.
"Eeek! A Mud monster! Help!" someone screamed,
but he couldn't see who it was because of the mud.
"I didn't know Poogles could be painted mutant,
I'm getting out of here before Sloth sees me and gets an idea!" said someone
Pelbert began to cry and as he walked home,
he knew he must look horrible. "I don't know how I can explain this to my owner.
Is there any way this can be fixed? What if it can't? Maybe I can be stitched
up, but how are we going to get all this mud out? I'll never look the same anyway.
Maybe I won't go home at all," Pelbert cried.
He didn't know that he could be fixed, that
a trip to the healing spring was really all he needed, so he didn't go home.
Instead he just crawled into a cardboard box as it began to rain. He fell asleep
as the box began to float downhill and into a gutter. After the rain stopped,
a rather grumpy Chia came out of his home and muttered, "Stupid NeoHome at the
bottom of the hill! The yard always floods and then I have all this junk floating
around to clean up! Maybe one day I'll actually find something useful. What's
this?" The Chia poked the box and then looked inside. "Humph, rags and garbage
who needs it? Discard!" he yelled. With the word 'Discard' something strange
happened, Pelbert felt as if he were flying, falling, and spinning. He didn't
know which way was up or down. Just when he thought he could stand it no longer,
Pelbert poked his head from the box. All around
him were mountains! They were huge mountains so tall the tops were covered in
clouds. They were all colours of the rainbow, some were glittery and others
actually seemed furry! After he looked at the mountains a while he noticed that
they were not made of rock. The glittery mountain was really a made of toy balls.
The furry looking mountain was made of cotton candy. It was very organised now
that he looked at it, not all jumbled together like a junk heap.
"Where am I anyway?" he asked, though no one
was around. "The last word I heard was 'Discard'."
Just then he saw a little speck of light in
the distance, and it got bigger. Then a faerie appeared! Well, it WAS a faerie,
but not a very pretty one. Her hair was long white strings, like a mop. Her
dress was tattered rags, but her wings were the worst. Her wings looked like
they had been cut from a newspaper that was crinkled and yellowed with age.
"I wanna go home!" Pelbert cried and the faerie
just looked at him with pity. "You speak?" she said. "But if you speak, then
you are alive! You shouldn't be here...but you are."
"Where am I?" Pelbert asked.
"You are in the place everything goes when it
is discarded! But no Neopet has ever been here!"
"You mean, I can't go home?" Pelbert asked.
"I don't know, if you were discarded that obviously
means you were not wanted."
"But my owner didn't discard me, she loves me
and I love her. I got all dirty and ragged, and I'll probably never be pretty
again. But my owner will love me. I should have never ran away from home. If
my owner wants me, that should be enough to send me home."
"I'm not so sure about that. Well, I can help
you get clean at least," she said and disappeared. She returned a few seconds
later with a healing potion.
"You mean, all I needed was a potion? I thought
I was ruined forever!"
The faerie just smiled sadly. When he looked
at her, Pelbert realised something. She was a Faerie, what was SHE doing here?
And she looked about as awful as him, why didn't she take a healing potion too?
"So, you are a Faerie. What do you do here?"
"Well, all the faeries have an element. Some
are air faeries, Some are light faeries. Me, I never could figure out what I
was. My best friends, the Cooking Pot faerie, and the Soup faerie, had the same
problem. You see, sometimes special faeries are born and we don't seem to really
fit in anywhere. But there is always a place we belong, if we can find it. I
finally found out I belong here, sorting the discarded items. I go to each item
when it appears and I sort it into a pile. I put all the blue fuzzles over there,
and all the red ones over there...and sometimes I even find discarded pet pets...but
those won't stay in a pile, but anyway...I just sort what I can."
"What! People actually discard pet pets?!" Pelbert
"Yeah, people discard all sorts of things. Look
over there at that mountain of faerie paint brushes!" the faerie said as she
gestured as gracefully as she could.
"Wow, that is something!" Pelbert said "But
is it all just going to sit there?"
"I'm not sure, maybe some day there will be
a way to get back discarded things. But most people do intend to discard something,
and wouldn't want it back. But it doesn't hurt to have it all organised Maybe
the day will come where people might want something back, and there will be
a way to get it back," the faerie said. But this just made Pelbert feel
worse. When would that day come? Well, he knew one thing, he wasn't going to
just sit in a pile and wait.
"Listen Mrs. Faerie, I don't belong here. It
has to be a glitch or something! It isn't fair."
"What did you say!?" the faerie half whispered.
"A Glitch. It has to be a Glitch."
"How do you know about the GLITCH?" the faerie
asked and now she seemed scared or angry. Pelbert didn't know what she was going
"I...I don't know any glitch...it is just a
thing people say when things go wrong...wait...why did you said THE GLITCH...as
if it is a person?"
"The Glitch is...a person...well...it is alive...sort
of, but we aren't supposed to say his name. He...it...might hear you."
"But if the Glitch brought me here then maybe
it has to bring me home. Don't Glitches work in people's favour at times."
"The Glitch does sometimes work in one's favour,
but only if one is very greedy and has bad intentions. You want to go home,
but I don't think it is because you are greedy. I don't think the Glitch ever
just helped anyone." But Pelbert wasn't listening. He was going to go find THE
He climbed over a mountain of jellybeans, and
then over a mountain of rugs, but all around him were just more mountains. "Doesn't
this place ever end?!" he asked
"Eventually," the Discard Faerie said.
"Hey, I didn't know you were following me,"
"Well, I don't have much else to do. Yes, this
place ends, but it'll be hard to climb all the mountains, there are so many."
"Is there any other way? You know, you could
carry me if you wanted to be nice..." Pelbert said.
"Nope, I am afraid not. If you want to give
up, it won't be so bad. You'll have plenty of food and things. You'll never
want for anything here. Here, let me read you a nice book," the faerie said
"No!" said Pelbert. "I see it now, you don't want me to leave because you
are lonely and want someone to talk to. Well, I want to go home and I will,
no matter how long it takes."
"You're right, I am lonely. It's boring here.
I've played with all the toys, I've read all the books, I've eaten all different
kinds of food, but I don't have anyone to talk to."
"I'm sorry, it's a nice place to visit, but
I don't want to live here. If you want to talk...then talk...we can talk while
I try to find my way home," Pelbert said
Pelbert kept climbing over mountains and for
a while the faerie was quiet, but it had been so long since she had had company
that she began to tell him stories. They were pretty interesting stories about
faeries and adventures. She even told him a little more about herself, but it
wasn't much. Just some stuff about how she had always looked that way and how
people teased her. But she said as least she had found out where she needed
to be. Pelbert was sure she really wasn't very happy, but kept it to himself.
If anyone had told him a few days ago that he would be climbing a mountain of
cookies while a faerie told him stories, and that he would only want to go home,
he wouldn't have believed it.
He seemed to climb for hours and got very tired.
He napped a few times when he was on a soft mountain. He snacked on cookies
(there were veggies and healthy food around, but wouldn't YOU eat the candy?)
when he got hungry. He loved cookies a lot, so ate and awful lot of them. But
he got a bad stomach ache. He decided he didn't really want to see a cookie
again for a while. Sometimes he noticed a pet pet here or there. They seemed
happy enough, munching away at whatever was near. Had people really discarded
them? Could he bring them home? What about the other items? Would it be possible
to sneak just a little of this or a little of that home with him? But he knew
he shouldn't be greedy or he'd never get home. But he still wanted to help the
pet pets. Soon he noticed that the surroundings were getting nastier. There
were mountains of smelly socks and mountains of volcanic rocks. Things were
not as brightly coloured as before.
"Great, it's only going to get worse...isn't
it?" he asked
"I'm afraid so. It just looked better to do
it this way. All the nice stuff at one end and everything else at the other
end. My own design you see. Everything was all jumbled up when I first came
"Oh, that must have took a long long time to
get it all like this," Pelbert said. He was just a little Poogle so of
course he would say something like this. He couldn't think of anything else
"Oh yes, a long, long time. But it is good to
finally have someone to see it and appreciate it," the faerie said. And she
really wasn't so bad. When he was hungry he could ask for just about anything
and the faerie would fetch it for him. (By now he wasn't asking for cookies.)
But even though he had begged her, she said she would not carry him to the end.
He would have to make it there himself, and even if he did, it was pretty pointless.
That is what she told him, anyway. But Pelbert was sure that she was just saying
that because she wanted him to stay.
But perhaps the Glitch knew they were coming,
because strange things began to happen. As if it wasn't bad enough to be climbing
a mountain of sludge, Pelbert found all kinds of odd things happening. Everything
seemed to turn funny colours Then time seemed to stand still for a minute and
a big sign appeared that said, "Neopets is Temporarily unavailable!"
"Eeek that is horrible!" Pelbert screamed in
slow motion as a faerie Kougra grinned down at him from the humongous sign.
Then another thing happened, when Pelbert tried
to eat something, the words "feed to Pelbert" didn't appear on the list. So
all he could do was look at the item, but he couldn't eat it. It became hard
to even walk, and he found he was walking backwards. So he had to turn around
to walk the way he wanted to go!
"Tahw si gnineppah?" Pelbert asked.
"We must be nearing the Glitch!" the faerie
said. "Everything is all weird and you are talking backwards!"
But that wasn't what Pelbert heard. He heard
the faerie talking backwards. But somehow he figured out what was going on.
He looked up to see that the sky had turned into html, CSS, and other codes
and when pelbert looked at the ground it seemed to be made of wires and circuits!
They must be very near the Glitch then. But where was he? They traveled down
a road made of broken wires. Here and there were little spark-like things. They
looked sad, that is, if a spark can look sad. Pelbert thought they looked a
bit like Meltons. Pelbert saw that they were pacing. It seemed like they wanted
to travel down the road, but each time they got to a gap in the road where the
circuits or wires were missing, they would hover there. So they couldn't get
going to where they needed to be. Pelbert traveled some more and finally saw
a silly-looking black evil fuzzle. It was munching happily on a wire.
"Hehehe... burp!" it said and started chewing
another wire. Then it shot into the air, and the all the codes that were so
neatly arranged became jumbled up. They finally just resembled dark clouds in
"The Glitch!" he shouted "Hey, get down here
now! I want to go home!"
But the Glitch just buzzed around and messed
up some more codes and chewed some more wires.
"Hey look at the mess you are making!" Pelbert
shouted but the Glitch just laughed.
How could he make it behave? What could he do?
Pelbert thought for a moment. The Glitch liked to mess everything up? But what
if he thought he wasn't messing everything up? Could he trick the Glitch into
fixing something instead?
"Wow, look at the Mess you are making! Look
at all the broken wires and messed up codes. This is wonderful! Everyone must
be so happy. Now, if someone really wanted to mess things up they'd come along
and connect these wires and they'd fix that code up there. But that will never
happen and that is great. But I'm not bad enough to do that. Boy, would that
be a surprise though, I bet no one would even suspect such a thing could happen.
And look at me - I was discarded. If I could get put back where I was before,
everyone would be so surprised!" Pelbert said
The glitch was confused of course.
"Broken wires...is what peoples be wanting?"
the Glitch said in a funny squeaky voice.
"Oh yeah, everyone just loves all the broken
wires, just look at them. They are so curly. Much better than straight connected
wires. Those are so boring. They just lay there. In fact, people just love chaos.
They'd never tell you though. They make out like they hate it when you mess
"Mwahahahaha. Me show them!" The Glitch said
and he connected all the wires. The little sparks jumped around happily and
zoomed away at lightening speed.
"And those codes up there, they are so jumbled
that it is beautiful. They don't compute at all!" Pelbert exclaimed.
The Glitch stormed up and fixed all the codes.
The "Neopets is Temporarily Unavailable" screen went away.
"Ooh what you did! Now people will have to get
on with playing boring games and shopping in boring shops. Their little brake
is over now! Hehehe, you showed them!" Pelbert laughed.
"Hehehehehe!" the glitch said and suddenly Pelbert
saw a big button appear that said "Put Pelbert Back" along with some other buttons.
They had names like 'Fluffy' and 'Snuggums'. They were the pet pets! Some of
them could go home because they were discarded by accident. Pelbert pushed a
lot of buttons, so many that he thought he'd never get to the end, but he wanted
to make sure the pet pets got home first. Finally Pelbert was able to put himself
back home. The Discard Faerie cried and said she would miss him, but he was
certain that he didn't want to stay.
"Please don't go! I'll be so lonely!" the Faerie
"Mwahahahaha!" the Glitch laughed.
"Shut up!" both the Faerie and Pelbert yelled.
Just then something green and white spotted
fell out of the sky and landed in the Faeries arms. It was an egg! It cracked
open and a little green Draik's head poked out.
"Mama!" it said looking at the Faerie.
Pelbert snuck away as the Faerie was looking
at the Draik. He was sure that someone would be sad that they had discarded
a Draik egg. But then again, maybe the Glitch was at work again. And who was
to say that the egg hadn't been discarded on purpose? But the little Draik was
happy and the Faerie was happy, so what did it matter? When Pelbert finally
made it back home, his owner didn't seem to notice how long he'd been gone;
it was as if he had just been out for a walk.
"Oh, I am so sorry I ran away! I got ripped
and then got all dirty and ragged! Then I thought you wouldn't want me anymore."
"Oh, it will be OK! See, the dirt comes right
off. And I can get a potion for you if you have rip. It will heal like a cut
heals. But I don't see a rip on you. You look fine to me. Are you sure you like
being a plushie? If it scares you, we can do something else. I can see you've
had a bad day. It is only your first day as a plushie. But if you are sure you
are not going to like it, I won't make you be what you don't want to be."
"I don't care what colour I am. But I did get
all ripped and dirty and I was gone for days and days when I ran away! I just
wanted to come home, that was all I cared about," Pelbert said and told
her everything that happened.
"How could you have been gone for days and days?
You only just left. It was a cute story though. And you know I will always love
you, you don't have to worry about that," she said. That wasn't the end of Pelbert's
fun, because from time to time items would appear in their inventory. He told
her that they were gifts from the Faerie of Discard Land, but his owner still
couldn't quite believe him. Finally she just shook her head and laughed. "Well
someone out there likes you..." Over the years, they never stopped getting gifts,
usually it was cookies.
"Arrgh anything but that!" said Pelbert
Author's Note: If you create a pet and name it Pelbert, please take good care
of it and feed it every day. But maybe not too many cookies.