Invisible Paint Brushes rock Circulation: 117,249,079 Issue: 235 | 14th day of Eating, Y8
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I'm Not Hope-less


by inosensu

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Dingy grey wings went limp, heavy droplets shaking the thin wings. It was raining-absolutely pouring! Few pets and owners were out at all. Even the tiny number wandering the rainy streets of Neopia Central carried colorful umbrellas to keep their scales, fur, and hair dry. But it was a different case for a tiny body sitting on the street corner.

     How pitiful the creature looked with its head in its hands! Owners murmured light remarks, hurrying their pets past the sad little Shoyru.

     Young and slipping past the best years of her life, Alison, the Grey Shoyru, was an abandoned soul. No one wanted her. She was a hopeless cause. Adopted in the past, she gave all her owners such trouble. She ate little, did little, said little.

     As the rain beat heavier, Alison squeezed her eyes shut as memories turned fitfully in her head.

     'You aren't worth the trouble.'

     'You are a miserable creature.'

     'You are hopeless.'

     Her teeth gritted as she felt the pain of those words weigh on her. Her grey eyes slowly opened, blinking the tears from her eyelashes. They never understood. No one did.

     Tears refilled in Alison's soulful grey eyes once more as she glanced upwards at the dark clouds swirling overhead. Salty tears mingled with the droplets pelting downwards. The Shoyru still remembered her first owner.

: Start Flashback :

     "Come here, Alison!" A brown-haired owner opened her arms to a light blue Shoyru. She smiled as she closed her eyes, laughing merrily. Her arms were wide open, welcoming the little dragon.

     The Blue Shoyru flew into the girl's arms exuberantly, knocking them both over. They were sprawled on the floor. But laughter rang throughout the Neohome. Alison was happy, clutching to her owner.

     She peered up at her owner, smiling timidly. "...You would never give me away... would you?"

     "Of course not! You're my pride and joy!" The girl raised the creature over her head, smiling at the Shoyru.

     The Shoyru smiled, too-

: End Flashback :

     "Ow!" The Grey Shoyru felt a sharp pain in the back of her head. She lunged forward, dropping into a puddle. A rock plunked by her, sinking to the bottom. Pushing herself up, she turned her head. From behind were three Shoyrus.

     A female Faerie Shoyru giggled lightly as she pressed her hands to her mouth, her elegant wings pulled back. A male Royal Shoyru stood at her side, holding up an umbrella to shield the both of them from the rain. On his face was a triumphant smirk. One Shoyru was closer to Alison, smiling as he looked down at the soaked Shoyru. A hand was extended toward the young Grey Shoyru.

     Uncertain, Alison reached out. Immediately, the Shoyru spat in disgust, pulling his hand away. He rubbed his hand against his shirt, anger on his features. "Hey! Watch it! You're going to rub your pessimism on me!"

     The Grey Shoyru dropped her hand, looking down sadly. The rain seemed to fall harder and harder. The drops dripped down her ear, down her spine, off her droopy tail, and into the rippled puddle she sat in.

     "If you don't mind, I'd like my Pet Rock back!" Maroon eyes glared down at the sulking Shoyru. Again, he extended his hand.

     "Oh..." Her voice was weak and sounded like a squeak. Fishing around in the puddle, she pulled out the wet rock. The young Shoyru handed over the rock, dropping it into the other's hand.

     As the three went on their way, she heard him exclaim. "Oh, great! She chipped him! What a good-for-nothing Shoyru..."

     A whimper escaped Alison as her pathetic grey eyes shined with tears. Turning her head from the three fortunate Shoyrus, she ducked her head. Her eyes closed as tears dripped down her pale cheeks. Reopening her eyes, she saw a sad Grey Shoyru staring upwards at her. The reflection rippled from the tears dripping down her cheeks. Her heart wrenched as she remembered the day her owner turned on her.

: Start Flashback :

     "Come here, Alison." The girl fished in her knapsack, her tongue protruding the side of her mouth in frustration. She crouched, searching for something.

     The Blue Shoyru hopped over with a great beat of her wings. She pressed her hands to her owner's lap, trying to peer into the bag. "What do you have for me?" A boisterous smile was on her face.

     "Oh! I know I had it with me... Here!" The brown-haired girl pulled out a paintbrush, the tip painted grey.

     "What is that?" Alison looked upwards at the magical item, questioning with curiosity.

     Waving her fingers, the girl's hazel eyes squinted mysteriously. "It is a magical item! It will make you a beautiful color!" The eyes widened, sparkling with happiness. "Just think how beautiful you'd be!"

     Sky blue eyes watched her owner. It warmed the Shoyru's heart to see her owner so happy. She turned her head to the side, smiling. "Then, let's not tarry!"

     A week later, the Blue Shoyru was no longer an elegant blue, but a forlorn grey. And she found herself in the pound as her owner walked off with a Ruki, laughing and talking. Hugging her legs until she was a grey ball, Alison squeezed her eyes shut. Tears ran down her dark skin. "Liar..."

: End Flashback :

     That was why she had run away from her most recent owner.

     Slowly, she stood. The water slid off her body, dripping from her limbs and her wings. With tiny steps, the shivering Shoyru moved closer to the ledge of the sidewalk. Sitting on the cement, she pulled her tail to her. Slowly, she tried to rinse the tail, turning it in her cold hands.

     Her eyes were closed as she felt her heart shatter a second time. Alison had not thought back to that day for so long. It was still a fresh injury in her heart. The rain continued to beat on her, dripping down her grey face. The world was distant to her as she sat there, squeezing her long tail.

     "Hello there!" A voice penetrated through her mind.

     Alison lifted her grey head, her sadistic eyes opening slowly. The rain had stopped, being no more than a light sprinkle. Miraculously, the sun had dispersed the grey clouds and shone beams down on the streets of Neopia Central.

     A beam seemed to land on the black-haired girl crouching close by. A smile flourished on her face as the Shoyru looked up. "Ah! Hello there." Her smile twitched and her brows furrowed. "Hm? Is something the matter?"

     The Grey Shoyru had not known she was still tearful. She shook her head furiously as she closed her eyes tightly, her tears flying through the air.

     A smooth hand rested on her head, stilling her from moving her head. Alison opened her eyes again, the tears collecting at the corners of her eyes as her as she looked up at the girl.

     The girl's voice was calm and soft as silk. "Don't cry." Releasing the Neopet's head, she reached into her bag. Pulling from her bag, she pulled out a plushie.

     The Shoyru's eyes widened as she scooted closer, her tail twitching with interest.

     The doll was of the Grey Faerie. Its blue eyes shone in the dim light the sun provided. Her hair was grey and her wings tattered, but there was beauty to such a thing. Alison was sure that it was the most beautiful thing she had ever seen.

     Her grey arms reached for the faerie doll on impulse, her eyes shining with new life.

     "Hm?" The black-haired girl's smile widened as she placed the plushie in the Shoyru's arms. She supported her chin with an arm as she watched the Shoyru.

     Excited with the possession of such a doll, Alison squeezed the faerie doll close. She gave a squeak of a squeal, rubbing her cheek against the doll.

     "Why are you so sad?" The intelligent blue eyes of the girl watched Alison. "It is raining. But that would not make anyone cry. What is wrong?"

     Alison looked up at the stranger, her arms lowering. She looked down at the doll she held in her arms and sniffled. Tears fell down her cheeks when she remembered.

     All of a sudden, the Grey Shoyru felt warmth. The girl was now hugging Alison, stroking the Shoyru's grey wings. "Don't cry. Don't cry, dear..."

     The Grey Shoyru could feel her heart warm like never before. She shut her grey eyes Slowly, an arm reached out and wrapped it around the girl's neck. "I... won't."

     The girl pulled back, lifting the Shoyru in her arms. "You poor dear...Where is your owner?"

      Struggling with her emotions, Alison lowered her eyes to inspect the object in her hands. "I... don't have... one."

     "Oh..." The girl watched the Shoyru, her eyes serene. "You poor thing..." Slowly, she lowered the Neopet to the ground. The girl started to walk away.

     "W-wait..." Alison's voice croaked weakly as she tried to exclaim. The Shoyru waddled after the girl fretfully.

     The girl turned around, her eyes acknowledging the young Neopet. "Yes?"

     Timidly, Alison looked up at the stranger. She bent her head to look into the blue eyes of the Grey Faerie doll in her hands. Slowly, she raised her arms toward the girl, the doll in between her hands. "You... forgot... this..."

     Kind eyes looked at Alison. Slowly, the girl knelt down, stroking the Grey Shoyru's head gently. "Oh... sweetie... you can keep her. You know... she's my favorite, too. But you need her more than I do." She started to stand again.

     Alison's eyes had grown watery again as the girl spoke. She looked to the faerie she held than to the girl. In an instant, Alison was sobbing against the girl's side, clutching to her leg.

     She could feel the gentle fingers of the girl stroking her ear, trying to assure the crying Neopet. Alison pressed her head against the stranger's knee, sobbing.

     "You promised not to cry..." The girl's words were spoken softly as she looked down at the bowed grey head of the Shoyru.

     "I... know. But I... can't... help it," Alison blubbered, gasping between her words.

     Slowly, she lifted her head to watch the girl. Those grey eyes shone-not with tears but with admiration. But her heart twisted with the fear of rejection. "Will... will you be my owner?"

     The confused look on the girl's face vanished to be replaced by a knowing smile. "Of course, dear. But I cannot go around calling you 'dear' all the time. What be your name?"

     The girl picked up the Shoyru under her arms gently. Her blue eyes shined with such friendliness that Alison could not look away.

     Hugging the Grey Faerie close, she spoke shyly. "I'm Alison."

     "Well, Alison, I'm Hope. Pleasure to meet you!" Hugging Alison close, she started walking toward her Neohome. "In due time... I will cure you of your sadness so that you may smile again." The newly-declared owner smiled to herself as she rocked the Grey Shoyru gently.

     'Too late,' thought Alison as she wrapped an arm around Hope's neck. She rested her grey head on her owner's shoulder, smiling into the distance. Snuggling with her new owner and the Grey Faerie doll, the Grey Shoyru's smile only widened.

     'They said I was Hope-less. I was. But I'm no longer Hopeless Now... now, I am Hope-ful...'

The End

 
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