Still thwarting Sloth's mind control... Circulation: 117,885,008 Issue: 236 | 21st day of Eating, Y8
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Now You See Me, Now You Don't: Part Six


by mygoodguild

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Finally Marigold and Kipper fell down below the Money Tree in Neopia Central, utterly exhausted. "Would you like a free something?" the kindly tree asked with a smile on his face. "You two look ravenous. I am sure, if you are quick enough, you could manage to grab one of these omelettes that are being donated by the dozens."

     Marigold nodded. "Yes, I am hungry, and I'm sure my brother would be, too. I'm tired as well. We've been in hard situations lately and hard times. Have you seen our owner, Belinda, pass by here? I think she was headed to the furniture store," Marigold said as Kipper went off to snatch some food or other valuable items.

     "No, I'm sorry. I might have seen your owner, but I see so many pass by here every single day I can't tell one owner from the next. I can hardly tell owner for pet!" The Money Tree sighed. "I'm sorry," he said again. "Why don't you go help your brother get some more things to eat for the both of you? I'm busy and I have other customers to wait on." As Marigold trotted off to the growing and shrinking pile of items, he called: "Don't be too greedy!"

     Marigold saw some nice looking food. She suspected it to be a gourmet food and Belinda would love her to get it. Marigold reached out for the food piece but quickly a Kougra ran up, shoved her out of the way, and took the food that Marigold had seen first. "Hey!" she cried. But the Kougra was gone.

     "It's the life of poverty," Kipper explained. For his youth, he was sure wise. "Everyone here is fighting for what they each want - and only one person can get the item, even if ten are trying." He shook his head sadly. "I want to help these pets and their owners so much. They seem like they can't afford food. I feel bad taking things - we can afford it better than the others can."

     "I know," Marigold said sadly. But she perked up a little. "Have you gotten anything of interest?" she asked, walking closer to her brother. "I'm starved like I haven't eaten in twenty days!" she declared.

     "Yeah, I've gotten things," he said slowly. "Not all things of interest, though. I've only gotten two food items..." He held up one odd looking Meridell fruit and one plain omelette. "The other things are rotten boots and stuff. But you can have one of these foods - take one," he said generously.

     "Thanks!" Marigold exclaimed, taking the fruit. It looked so weird, but she felt adventurous. "Mmm," she said as she savored her first bite. "It's actually good! I thought it would taste strange, just the way it looks. Well, proves me wrong! Don't judge a book by its cover." Marigold smiled.

     Kipper nodded and bit into the omelette. "I'm still hungry. Help me find some more items. Also, be on the lookout for furniture. If we got some I bet Belinda would appreciate it. Especially since she'll have to pay for the two doors Mr. Picky broke down and our hole in the wall." Kipper sighed. "We had such a nice neohome. Why ever is Mr. Picky so miserable?" he wondered to himself.

      Marigold wasn't listening. She was eagerly browsing through the piles of thrown out items. If she saw one she liked, she knew to be fast. Very fast. Everything came and went so quickly. Little pets would come with armfuls and bundles of old items and toss them in a pile. A second later other pets would snatch all of the things up. One pet's junk is another pet's treasure!

     At last Marigold saw some tasty looking something. She didn't care about the junky foods - she wanted something real, something satisfying. She reached out for the cherry Moehog cookie. And she got it! She held in her hooves, realizing that this was real - she was actually holding it! Free food! Plus, this one would be good. It was flavored especially for her species.

     Marigold stuffed the thing in her pocket and was scanning the rest of the "junk" carefully, wanting more and more. She felt so greedy, even though the tree had warned her not to be. Oh well. It felt good. Besides, Kipper shared his findings with her. She had to get something to share with him. When she saw the yummy chicken and gammon she yanked it up before anyone else could. Hey, she actually had a knack for this!

     Kipper strolled over. "Got anything good?" he asked. "I haven't been having much luck. I found a furniture piece, though," he said happily. "It's a toilet." He laughed. "A cloud toilet. This was the most expensive thing I've found yet!"

     "Ooh, goodie. More expensive than what I've found. I bet Belinda hasn't bought a toilet yet, or at least I hope not. Maybe she has. But we'll definitely have more than one bathroom so your toilet will go to use." Marigold smiled. "I found two things." She held out her treats. "Pick the one you like." Kipper picked the chicken and gammon so she ate the cookie. "I'm all filled up now. Hmm, I wonder where Mr. Picky went to."

     "Who cares?" Kipper asked. "I'm fine without him, aren't you? The question is when Belinda is going to get back. Maybe we've missed her and she's walked on by. Perhaps she's already back at the neohome and she discovered the hole. I think we'd better get on back. She'd be disappointed if we weren't there when she arrived."

     Marigold and Kipper walked back to their neohome with half-full bellies, a toilet, and some rotten old boots. Kipper opened the door and dropped the toilet on the floor. They could rearrange it later. He left the boots in the yard. He didn't expect Belinda to want them. The neohome was so quiet that they were both sure it wasn't occupied, except for themselves.

     "I guess Belinda isn't back yet," Marigold said slowly. "Why don't we go in the bathroom and watch the construction workers build the living room? We could watch easily through the hole in the wall without being in the way."

     As they went into the bathroom they noticed the door was replaced and the hole mended. They also realized the front door had been secure when they came back as well. Ooh, those Eyrie construction workers sure were kind! They never had to go and do that. But they did. How helpful! But that did mean they couldn't watch the room being built since the hole in the wall was fixed. But that was a good thing. It didn't matter.

     Then there was a soft knock on the front door. Kipper ran to answer it, for the knocking type didn't sound like the way Mr. Picky would knock. It was Belinda. Her arms were full of big bags of things. "Hello!" Kipper said eagerly. "Do you need help?" he glanced past her and saw many more pieces of furniture out in their yard. "I'll go get some other things to bring in," he said.

     "I didn't get a toilet," Belinda said sadly once everything was brought in. "It's awful. I guess we'll have to make do and not-"

     Marigold interrupted. "Splendid!" she exclaimed. "Then Kipper's toilet won't go to waste!" When Belinda gave her a weird look she said: "Oh, it's a long story. Mr. Picky broke in and it was horrifying but we escaped. We ran to the Money Tree. We got some food to eat and Kipper found a toilet. That was to make a long story short." She giggled. "Let's rearrange the living room furniture."

     "I got the sofa you wanted, Marigold," Belinda said. "First, let's put the toilet in the bathroom. I got a cloud sink and a bath tub. I hope you two are alright, anyway. I am going to report Mr. Picky to the Neopets Team. This is awful... Oh yes, I got a present for the both of you." Belinda smiled and held up two wrapped boxes.

     "Oh, thanks!" Marigold said, taking her box and shaking it. A few big things rattled inside. "Oh, and about the cloud sink, that's perfect... Because Kipper got a cloud toilet." Marigold chuckled as she ripped the paper off of her gift. She lifted the lid to the box. Inside were three new books she hadn't read yet. "Oh, thank you!" she exclaimed sincerely. "I'll get to reading these right away. I can't wait to become smarter. You remembered how much I loved books and how I wanted to be the most intelligent pet." Marigold grinned.

     Kipper tore open his own box and lifted the lid. Inside were some very cool, boyish shirts that he had been wanting. "Oh, this is fabulous! Thanks!" Kipper cried, holding the first shirt up to himself. It should fit perfectly. He had three shirts in all: Nightsteed T-shirt, Balthazar T-shirt, and an I Love Captain Scarblade Shirt.

     "Everything turned out nicely after all," Belinda said with a smile. "And once I report Mr. Picky, he'll be doomed and we'll be in peace for eternity." She chuckled. "Oh, look at this," she said seriously, picking up a note that was in the corner of their floor. "A note!"

     It read: Dear Miss Belinda, Miss Marigold, and Mister Kipper. I am genuinely sorry for all of the trouble I have caused your family. I was under the control of Doctor Frank Sloth who told me to do all of those evil deeds! I had to, and I had to be mean about it. Or he would be done with me! But he has been overruled... For now... And I am very sorry. Would you please forgive me? If it would be easier to forgive me this way, I have left a funding of one million neopoints to help rebuild your neohome and refund for your losses. Thank you. With love, Mister Picky. P.S.: You can call me Fred.

     "Do you believe him?" Marigold asked suspiciously. "I doubt his story."

     "Yes," Belinda said. "Besides, who cares? One million neopoints as an apology is more than we'll ever need! I haven't spent even over 200,000 on our old neohome. We're going to be living the rich Neopian life, my children!" Belinda exclaimed, pulling her kids into a hug.

The End!

Author's Note: Much thanks to the editor of the Neopian Times, Droplet, for accepting my story! =D You're amazing. Also, thanks to my new guild, Notre Amitie, and all of the members. You guys are ALSO amazing!

 
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Other Episodes


» Now You See Me, Now You Don't: Part One
» Now You See Me, Now You Don't: Part Two
» Now You See Me, Now You Don't: Part Three
» Now You See Me, Now You Don't: Part Four
» Now You See Me, Now You Don't: Part Five



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