True Sisters: Part One
It was a blustery Saturday morning, and I, Fan the snow
Pteri, was doing my favorite thing in the whole world: flying. The cold wind whipped
past my feathers as I flew through the air. Lyra, my Catamara, squealed with delight
from my back as I went into a steep dive, pulling up at the exact right moment.
Though she is a Maraquan petpet, she has the strange ability to venture out of
her water bowl. Instead of scales, she has a soft white fur, and loves to float
in the sky using her magnificent tails. The air's crispness stung our eyes, making
me feel alive. I caught an updraft and floated higher into the sky, surveying
our new home.
My owner Summer had recently moved our Neohome
from the heart of Neopia Central to the outskirts of Meridell. To say the least,
it was a big adjustment. However, the country suited our family much better
than the High Street ever would. It was especially good for me, as I was highly
sensitive to almost any grooming product. This commercially expanding Neopia
Central was full of tiny particles of shampoo, perfume, and anything else you
could think of. I had had to spend most of my time inside in bed, so to me,
this was heaven.
My stomach rumbled, and I began to realize how
hungry over an hour of flying could make you.
"Ready for a break?" I asked Lyra, and she chirped
I took one last breath of cool, high-altitude
air, and began my descent. As I neared our new home, I saw my sister Morbid,
a Mutant Scorchio, standing outside, rubbing her sleep-deprived eyes. I called
out to her and she waved drowsily. Morbid is quite a night owl, and it is not
uncommon to wake up to in the early hours of the morning and see her light still
shining. She and Laborite, her Scout Unit, love to spelunk, or explore in caves,
and were very good at it. It was a desirable skill, and I admired her. Still,
I laughed as she stumbled down the steps to meet me, nearly tripping over her
"Good morning, Morbid!" I said in my high-pitched,
but cheery, morning voice. "Have you seen Tid?"
I should never have asked. Faster than you could
say, "Rotten omelette with cheese... "
"Rawr!" A small green blur rushed out of the
bushes and tackled me to the grass. I blinked in surprise at the Green Ixi now
holding me down. This was Tid, my favorite older sister. She was as hyper as
a Bruce in winter, agile as a Kougra, and she had hooves as sharp as a Tuskaninny's
tusks. Her huge purple eyes glared down at me.
"How could you do this to me? How, I ask you,
I gaped at her. "What? What did I do?"
She looked at me strangely. "You're just so...
cheerful. I mean, it's 7:30 on a Saturday, and you're flapping around greeting
people. It's unnatural."
I laughed at her sarcasm and she grinned, helping
me to my feet. The small green Tenna in her arms stared blankly at me with large
unblinking eyes. There was quite a story behind Slowpoke, but I had never really
gotten used to him.
I brushed off my snowy feathers and started up
the stairs, just in time to meet my sister Tears coming down. Tears is a Sketch
Kiko who loves to read and daydream. She and her Slorg, Sable, are two peas
in a pod in that category. They both can get very distracted very easily, and
it's gotten them into trouble more than once.
"Oh, hi Fan. I was just coming to look for you,"
she said. Her voice was, as usual, soft and sort of unfocused. She continued,
"Mom wants you in... oh look. A butterfly." She wandered off slowly, her thoughts
consuming her. I sighed; sometimes Tears can be so annoying I just can't stand
it. For one, she's the only one of us who calls im_smarter_then_you Mom. The
rest of us just call her Summer. Plus, she didn't even finish her sentence.
Now, I had no idea where to meet Summer. I walked inside and into the main hall.
"Summer?" I called. "Where are you?"
I looked up to see my owner smiling and waving
from the top of the stairs. I smiled back and ran up them to meet her.
"Hey Fan," she said, giving me a quick hug.
"Wanna help me with something?"
I nodded and she led me up to the top floor.
She pulled some rusty steps down from the ceiling and started up them. I followed
her; unsure of what was going to happen. Lyra hummed uncertainly. We had an
As though she had read my mind, Summer spoke.
"Turns out our new house has an attic that hasn't been cleaned in ages. I thought
you might want to help me do the job." We clambered up the steps and into a
large, crowded room. Why would I want to help clean?
I brushed off my feathers and looked around.
The attic was very old; you could see that just by looking at the floor. It
was worn smooth from years of tiny feet running, chairs scuffing, and brooms
sweeping. There was only one window, which was dirty and cracked, but behind
all the muck it was large and majestic. The attic itself was very dirty, you
could see the tiny particles of dust dancing where the window let in the sun,
but with a little cleaning, it would look beautifully antique. There were piles
of things in every corner, stuffed into every little space. Just from where
I was standing I could see everything from what looked like a broken Sword of
Skardsen to baby toys, to a half-eaten Poisonous Jelly.
Why had Summer thought I'd enjoy cleaning? She
knows that I'd much rather be out flying or, my stomach rumbled, eating. Summer
seemed to sense my doubt, for she suggested that I think on it, and that we
could start after breakfast.
Breakfast was easy and light, an omelette each.
Mine was BBQ, my favorite. I licked the sauce off my feathers as I thought about
my predicament. The food in my belly was starting to gear up my brain, and I
saw the possibilities that the attic held. On the other hand, I'd promised Tid
that I would go with her and Morbid to Illusen's Glade to check out the quests
and maybe earn some items. As I sat there, weighing my possibilities, Tid ran
in and started speaking very fast.
"Oh, hey Fan. Morbid and I have been exploring
the creek and boy oh boy is it exciting! I mean, it's got mud, and skipping
stones, and mud, and big sticks, and mud, and fishes, and mud, and even a few
shrimp! Speaking of shrimp, boy oh boy am I starving. Ooo! Green pepper omelette!
My favorite!" She took a huge bite and gulped it down. "So, are you up for that
big trek today? Summer says that the Glade isn't quite as near as we thought.
Oh well, guess it doesn't make a difference to you, flying is much faster than
Tid had always been jealous of my ability to
fly; it was the biggest adventure ever in her opinion. Summer was saving for
a Halloween Paintbrush, but Tid knew just as well as I did that it would be
a long time until that happened. I knew that it wasn't a good idea to make Tid
angry by telling her I wouldn't be coming, but this seemed like as good a time
as any to tell her.
"Um, Tid?" I started tentatively. "You know
that Glade trek thing? I don't think that I'm going to be able to make it today.
Summer asked me to do some cleaning, and I thought that I'd take up on her offer."
Tid's smile wavered, but suddenly she grinned.
"That's ok. Actually, I was kinda hoping someone
would say that." Her voice lowered to a whisper. "I've heard that Illusen can
get kinda creepy, if you know what I mean. Shifty eyes... " She shifted her
eyes from left to right. I laughed and so did she.
"So, why are you all of a sudden so excited about
cleaning? That's not like you."
I told her about the attic, and the stuff piled
everywhere. I thought that it would be fun to sift through all that junk; maybe
I'd find some treasure.
At the word treasure, Tid's ears perked up.
"Treasure? Really? Can I help?"
"Well, some company would be kinda nice... "
Tid squealed with delight. "Thanks! You're such
a cool sister! I'm going to go get my... dun-dun-dun duh... EXPLORATION SUIT!"
She bounced off, singing.
I shook my head. Sometimes Tid was so weird.
I headed up the stairs as well, to Summer's room. On the way there, I passed
Tears floating in the hall. She was in her meditating pose, humming an eerie
little tune. It was something like one of those commercial songs; it got stuck
in your head. This one, however, sounded sad and old.
As if she had sensed my presence, Tears spoke.
Her usually distant voice was a whisper with a hint of urgency.
"Do you hear it?" She slowly opened her eyes.
I paused, trying to make out a sound. Tears
"The house, it's speaking to us."
I strained my tiny bird ears, but couldn't hear
a thing. Just as I was about to ask her what she was talking about, she spoke
"This house is old, very old. It has many secrets;
some are, shall we say, not so good? According to the stars, today is a day
of the circle. Things shall end, but others shall begin. Be careful up there,
Fan." She closed her eyes and started up her humming again, and I new that was
my signal to leave. Utterly perplexed, I continued on my way, humming the eerie
After informing Summer that there would be double-duty,
I ran up to the top floor. I pulled down the creaky old stairs and waved away
the dust. Grabbing my flashlight, I started up them, still humming the song.
The attic was empty, which was strange. I had
been expecting Tid to be up here already. I had never been up here alone, and
to tell the truth, it was sort of creepy. Images of all the horror stories I
had ever heard swept through my mind. I shook them away; they weren't real.
I saw something move out of the corner of my
eye, but when I turned, nothing was there. A cold breeze swept the attic, and
I shivered; I wasn't alone. Suddenly, the little tune that Tears had been humming
began to play from somewhere in the corner. My eyes widened and I turned towards
the sound. Songs don't just start playing out of the blue, what was going on?
My eyes never leaving the corner, I went closer and closer. Just as I was about
to pull away the curtain, the song stopped. I heard a shuffling behind me, and
turned to come face to face with a small figure clothed in black robes. Its
face was hideous, grey and sagging. The worst part was its eyes; they were large
and staring, with purple irises and large black pupils. I opened my mouth to
To be continued...
Dedicated to my twin sister River! :-) Neomail me with comments! *dances