Define Happiness: a (Possible) History
Once upon a time, in a place far, far away (or rather, high,
high above), there was a beautiful young light faerie. She was the envy of all
who set eyes upon her. The visual attraction she was gifted with from birth was
none other than her stunning pearly wings. It was rumored that not even the greatest
of faeries, say, Queen Fyora herself, possessed such glamour to behold. It would
be assumed that one of such physical riches would be the happiest of all, but
in the case of young Baelia, that was not so.
"Faerie, why do you not smile?" a curious blue
Kacheek once asked quietly, staring up at Baelia with intense black eyes. "You
are the most beautiful in all of Neopia, surely you are happy."
Baelia raised a thin eyebrow, glancing down at
the little Neopet, milky blue eyes glittering in annoyance. Smoothing out her
elegant blue gown, she replied smoothly, "I will be happy if you bring to me
a Blueberry Faerie Bubble."
Eager to please, the Kacheek smiled widely, nodding
vigorously. "Yes, yes! I will bring you one." With those words, the small Neopet
waddled off in search of the item, determined to bring it back to the Faerie,
if only to bring her happiness. After all, it should not be so hard to make
Baelia watched the Kacheek go, scoffing to herself.
Surely the Neopet would forget the given quest. With that thought in mind, she
made herself comfortable on the lush green lawn below her feet, raising her
mirror to eyelevel to inspect herself.
Not but an hour later the Kacheek came scurrying
back, clutching a small round object in his paws. "Faerie! Faerie!" he cried,
panting slightly as he approached Baelia. "Here, for you. This is what you requested,
was it not?" He held out the humble offering in hope that it would light the
Eyeing the object for a moment, Baelia simply
shook her head. "This does not make me happy," she replied, bored, tossing her
silky white hair over her shoulder with little effort. "Bring to me a Faerie
Snowglobe. Then I will be happy."
Needless to say this continued for a handful
of hours. Each time the poor Kacheek would return with an item at Baelia's request,
the Faerie would reject the object, sending the Neopet on yet another hunt for
her happiness. Gradually, the Kacheek grew weary of serving the Faerie, and
realization began to dawn upon him.
"Faerie, I have brought you many items," the
Kacheek began, growing angry as he gestured to the growing pile that lay beside
Baelia. "Each you have said would bring you happiness, yet I have not received
so much as a thank you! You may be the most beautiful in Neopia as far as your
outside, but on the inside you are hideous." With that, he turned away, leaving
Baelia to ponder his words.
The Faerie held a shocked expression for the
moment. How dare he! He knew nothing, that much was clear. After all, he was
just a pathetic Neopet, what did he know? Rolling her eyes, Baelia tossed the
thought from her mind.
The next afternoon, Baelia was lounging lazily
upon a particularly fluffy white cloud, admiring herself as usual when a commanding
voice drew her attention to the ground below.
"Baelia! I wish to speak with you concerning
an important matter," Fyora, the Faerie Queen, called up, her tone demanding
respect and obedience. Beside her the Kacheek from the previous day stood solemnly.
Sighing, Baelia reluctantly lowered herself to
the ground. "Yes, your highness?" she muttered miserably. Why was Fyora the
Queen, anyways? Baelia was infinitely more beautiful than her. Surely it was
her who should rule over the Faeries. Perhaps she would later see to that…
"It has come to my attention, from a reliable
source," Fyora began, offering a slight smile to the small Kacheek, who in return
smiled back, "that you, despite yourself, can find no happiness. Is this true?"
Baelia merely shrugged, glancing up at the sun.
"Will this take long? I'm due at the Beauty Parlor in an hour," she informed
her Queen in a rude tone.
Fyora shook her head in disgust, clutching her
staff tightly. "Baelia, you are a selfish and ungrateful Faerie. For this you
will never be happy, and so let you be a visual reminder to all of this fact.
You have brought this upon yourself." With those sentencing words, the Faerie
Queen took an ominous step towards Baelia.
Baelia watched in horror as the tips of her envied
pearly wings floated miserably to the floor one after the other, each proceeded
by a sharp click of scissors. The Faerie quickly snatched up a mirror, examining
her new appearance. "What have you done to me?!" she shrieked, falling to her
knees. There was no reply, for Fyora had gone, leaving Baelia to sulk and mourn
over her newly clipped wings.
And so for the next week the miserable young
Faerie grew more and more depressed. Her physical appearance also seemed to
decline over the days. Her once elegant blue gown had come to be a tattered
and faded blue dress of rags. Her once silky ivory hair was now unkempt and
dull, hanging lifelessly around her upper-body. Her skin grew pale, losing its
healthy peach glow. And with these changes, she became the first of a new race
of Faerie… the Grey Faerie.
"I've seen her, I have. The Grey Faerie!" many
young Neopets around Neopia proudly claimed to their friends. It wasn't as if
it wasn't believable, for Baelia had been sulking childishly in the shadows
outside the great walls of Faerie City for many days since the horrible 'curse'
had been cast upon her.
One particularly gloomy day, Baelia began to
think. "Why should I be the only one to suffer this dreaded depression?" she
wondered aloud, an idea growing in her mind. "If I cannot be happy, then I will
not suffer alone."
And so, shortly after, the first Grey Neopets
appeared around Neopia. Many owners thought it to be a new illness, when their
generally perky pets would return in a flood of self-pity. But if that was so,
then why was a cure not available in the Hospitals? Perhaps something greater
was at hand, and indeed, this was so, for alas, it was none other than Baelia's
Even to this very day you can hear her sobbing.
If only at the quietest time of night you listen carefully, you will hear her
soft crying drifting from high above in the clouds, for the most beautiful Faerie
in Neopia is now a repelling reminder of all things brought by selfish thoughts
And so when you might feel that what you have
does not make you happy, remember the Grey Faerie, and put a smile on your face.
It's probably not as bad as it seems. Think of those less fortunate; to them,
you may have the greatest riches of all. Whether it be in appearance, or in
what really counts, the heart. Judge a person not by what they look like on
the outside, but what they look like on the inside. You won't be disappointed.