On Gilded Wings
"Bye! Have a good evening!"
Kauvara sat behind the counter of her shop, waving goodbye to a customer that had just bought a morphing potion. Sighing, the Kau plopped down into her chair, adjusting her hat while doing so. Abracadabra, her white Snowbunny, hopped onto the counter and stared at Kauvara with beady eyes. Kauvara gently patted the Snowbunny until there was a knock at the door.
"Come in," she called tiredly.
The door creaked open slowly, and in shuffled a little Tuskaninny. She stared at Kauvara with wide eyes and said, "Excuse me, but where do you keep the Morphing Potions?"
Kauvara gestured towards a shelf on the left, and the Tuskaninny replied with a "Thank you." The Kau watched as the girl stared in awe at the wonderful potions, inspecting their every detail with great caution.
"How much does this one cost?" asked the Tuskaninny, holding up a Rainbow Poogle Morphing Potion in her blue flippers.
"That would be 100,000 Neopoints," replied Kauvara.
Dejectedly, the Tuskaninny set the potion back down on the shelf. Seeing her sorrow, Kauvara decided to socialize a little.
"Hey, kid," she started. "Have you a name?"
"Oh yes. I'm Clarissa," said the Tuskaninny.
"I don't suppose you have many Neopoints, do you?"
"No, I'm fairly poor, ma'am. I always eat at the soup kitchen."
Kauvara thought. "What's your favourite kind of soup?"
"My favourite kind is, um, beef meatball soup." Clarissa blushed.
With a reassuring smile, Kauvara asked, "Not a lot of pets eat that soup, huh?"
"No, they don't, ma'am. I'm the only one."
The Kau stood up from her chair and trotted over to the little pet. "Ah, but remember, it's good to be unique. I always wanted to be a magician, but a lot of Neopians think I'm weird because of that. But look where I am now!" At the last sentence Kauvara waved her hoof through the air. "Maybe, if you like the meatball soup, then you can make soup of your own, and you'll be more famous than the Soup Faerie herself!"
She said that with such enthusiasm that Clarissa was forced to giggle. "Thanks, ma'am," she said, glancing up at the clock hanging on the inside of Kauvara's shop. "I really must be off now. It's getting late."
"Thanks for stopping by!" replied Kauvara as the Tuskaninny left. She returned to the counter and sat in the chair, only to be disturbed by another visitor.
"When will I have some peace and quiet?" Kauvara muttered to Abracadabra.
The next pet to step into the shop was a Faerie Shoyru. Kauvara recognised the Shoyru as being one of her friends.
"Hello, Eileen," Kauvara greeted her, standing up. "What brings you here?"
"Oh, I don't know, just checking in on how things are doing, that's all," the Shoyru responded.
"Oh, for the love of Fyora, it's been dreadfully busy! All day long I've had customers come here non-stop!" She paused, then added, "And just a minute ago a young Tuskaninny came into my shop and browsed for a while."
"That Tuskaninny..." pondered Eileen, "does she happen to go by the name of Clarissa?"
"Oh yes! And by the looks of it she's pretty poor, too."
Eileen looked at Kauvara. "I know her. She lives with my neighbour. The poor thing has always dreamed of being able to fly. Isn't that sad?"
The Kau wasn't paying much attention and was looking at Eileen's large wings. "Erm, yes, it is sad," she murmured.
"Well, I've got to go now, Kauvara." Eileen waved and fluttered out the door.
Without even looking back to her friend, Kauvara thought, I think I know how to make that little girl's dreams come true...
That night Kauvara stayed up, mixing together potion ingredients in a cauldron. Abracadabra hopped around, collecting the spell items Kauvara needed and giving them to his owner. She stirred the brew up, then looked at the bubbling mixture proudly.
She had done it.
That following morning, Clarissa was lining up at the Soup Kitchen, waiting to get a little something to eat. It was jam-packed, full of poor, hungry pets that could not afford food. Sighing, Clarissa shuffled forward. A Kau covered in a grey hooded cloak scurried over to where Clarissa was standing.
"Excuse me," said the old Kau, "I'm terribly hungry and I need something to eat. Would you mind letting me go in front of you?"
Without hesitation Clarissa smiled and answered, "Why, of course. I don't mind!"
The old Kau stepped forward, taking Clarissa's place in line. Although the old pet's face was covered and the Tuskaninny couldn't see what colour she was, she knew she was a Kau because of the large white horns poking out from behind her hood. The Kau took a small helping of tomato soup.
While Clarissa wasn't looking and the Soup Faerie had her back turned, the Kau reached into her pocket and pulled out a jar of orange liquid. She pulled the cork off and reached over. She poured the contents of the bottle into the cauldron of meatball soup. Thankfully for her, no one saw.
"Here you go!" the Soup Faerie said sweetly, handing the old Kau her soup. The Kau just nodded and strode away. She sat down and watched Clarissa. The Tuskaninny asked for a bowl of meatball soup, and a few giggles arose from the room. She blushed, but gratefully took her soup bowl and sat down. She began to sip from the bowl, but then stopped. She dropped her bowl. It clattered to the ground with a crash. A passing Meerca stopped himself before he was about to tread over the broken ceramic.
"What in the name of Fyora are you thinking?" he fumed.
"I-I really, really, don't know, I..." Clarissa stared at her flippers until they became lost in a cloud of glittery smoke. The whole room was filling with the smoke! Pets coughed and sputtered, but the Kau just smiled. Finally the smoke began to die down. Clarissa sat in the middle of the room, dazed. She looked down wearily at her flippers. They were a sweet orange colour. Alarmed, she looked around herself frantically as whispers rose up from the crowd. Finally, Clarissa decided to turn around.
Sprouting out from her back were two marvellous, shimmering Faerie wings.
Wings! thought Clarissa, I have wings! I can fly!
"Oh, wow," gasped Clarissa. "This is truly amazing!"
Other pets stared and gasped at this newfound Faerie pet, wondering how it was possible. Clarissa spread her finlike wings, then flapped them once or twice as a test. She flapped them a little more faster, a little more stronger, and flew.
She darted around the room, soaring on gilded wings. Colour flashed everywhere; many pets shocked and bewildered, some watching with a hint of jealousy. Forgetting about her hunger, Clarissa flew out the door, a few young pets following her out.
The old Kau watched for a moment, then took her leave. Padding out the door while still wearing her cloak, Kauvara smiled to herself. The jar was safely tucked into her pocket. Clarissa had never suspected it was her.
The Faerie Tuskaninny Morphing Potion had turned out well.