A scream tore throughout the neohome, startling the ghostkerchiefs out of everyone. Alice sat up in bed, her hair a mass of bedhead, and her eyes blinking dazedly.
What in the... she began to think, and then her thoughts registered what must’ve happened.
“Lee!” she shouted angrily, immediately assuming the cause, and flung her blankets out of the way, leaping, with her nightgown flowing out behind her, like a Nimmo who’d just found a whoopee cushion in his chair.
Kelly shivered enthusiastically in her own bed, clutching her masked intruder plushie close to her fur. The shadows loomed in on her, and as she felt yet another scream rise in her mouth, she heard a noise that sounded exactly like the Monoceraptor breathing heavily into her ear.
Just as she began to open her mouth to scream, the door was slammed open, and light flooded into the blue Cybunny’s room. She looked around quickly and found out that nothing was in her room, but it had just been the air streaming through the vents that had made the breathing sound.
Alice walked into the room, looking thoroughly ruffled from a night of tossing and turning while she slept. She gave Kelly a tired look.
“The light faerie got out, didn’t she?” Alice asked, looking down at the empty glass bottle sitting near the dresser. Kelly was extremely afraid of the dark, and the light faerie had been a great source of light for the Cybunny, especially after she had agreed to stay there as long as they fed her. Only, she could escape if somebody willingly let her out.
“Lee_7454875564! Come here, NOW!”
Moments later a starry Kyrii head peeked into the room, grinning sheepishly with his ears flattened against his head.
“Hehe...” he said, laughing nervously. “What’s wrong, Mom?”
Alice glared at him.
“Okay!” Lee said, grumbling as he stomped into the room. “I opened the bottle! But Kelly needs to get some backbone! She’s scared of her shadow.”
“That’s why she needs the light!” scolded the girl, not letting up on her glare, which could paralyze a cobrall. “You are not to leave your room for a few days, because now I have to dip into our paint brush funds!”
Lee looked down, looking like he had been painted with a grey paint brush himself.
In the morning, the blue Cybunny sat at her desk at school, her head on her paws as she dreamed of a group of babaas playing in the clouds. Some of her classmates snickered as they watched her, the teacher slowly walking up to her to see if she would wake up.
“Kelly!” shouted a harsh voice, and a long mootix ruler slammed down on the desk.
Her head shot up, and she looked up to see the old wrinkled face of the old, spotted Techo teacher only an inch away from her own. She swallowed nervously.
“One hundred word essay, Miss Kelly,” said the teacher. “Don’t fall asleep in class again.”
The Cybunny hung her head as the teacher walked away this time. After the faerie’s flight of freedom the night before, she hadn’t gotten a wink of sleep, but had shivered in Alice’s comforting arms for the rest of the night. She was dreading P.E., where the gym teacher would surely notice her listless movements.
“TEACHERS,” shouted the intercom, suddenly coming to life. “BRING YOUR STUDENTS TO THE AUDITORIUM FOR THE ASSEMBLY.”
The news brought new energy to Kelly’s tired limbs. She wouldn’t have to go to P.E. after all!
The old Techo huddled all of her class out the door, and brought them to the place that the intercom had mentioned. Kelly shivered when she saw how dim the lights were. How many dangers could be hiding behind the curtain? She didn’t want to think about the possibilities.
After she sat down in the comfortable spydersilk chairs, her classmates followed, and the buzz of conversation filled the room. All her friends wondered what could have caused the surprise assembly.
“Could Maraqua have been flooded?” wondered a green Shoyru called Jennie.
“Don’t be silly!” hissed an orange Ogrin named Jeff. “Maraqua’s already under water!”
Kelly giggled a little as she glanced towards the stage. What happened next was something that she never could have expected.
The lights went off.
Alice paced the room as Kelly sat in the principal’s office, shivering as she sipped on a cup of mint flavored borovan. She still hadn’t gotten over the lights. As soon as they’d gone off, she’d screamed, and eventually the principal, who was an old Moehog, came and led her to his office, where he’d neomailed Alice.
“I’m sorry, Mom,” Kelly said, still shivering. The liquid in her cup was shaking along with her, coming perilously close to spilling with each shake.
“It’s alright, dear,” the girl said, still pacing as she ran her hand through her hair. “We’ll just have to find something portable that glows.”
Kelly coughed as she sat in the chair. Now what were they going to do? Both of them knew that there wasn’t anything that you could carry around Neopia without drawing stares, and Kelly was sure that Alice didn’t want to do that. It would be way more out of place than an asparagus Chia with a bite in its stalks, and Alice probably wouldn’t want that kind of attention.
Kelly tapped her foot on the floor. Some sort of inspiration should come to her now. It always happened that way in stories she had read in the NT. Now, if only her foot could glow.
“Mom!” she said, the traditional NT inspiration popping into her mind. “I have an idea! You could paint me!”
“Don’t be ridiculous, Kelly,” the girl said, rubbing her chin while she tried to think of a solution. “Where is there a paint brush that would glow?”
“There is! It’s the glowing paint brush! You should go to neoschool! Not me!”
Alice blushed as Kelly giggled in the chair, her fright with the auditorium lights having been forgotten. She nearly fell out of it, and felt a rush of adrenaline as she realized how close she came to falling.
Kelly stood at the edge of the Rainbow Pool, and watched as Alice dipped the paint brush in the water. Immediately the water turned green, and glowed as if it had suddenly become radioactive. She wrinkled her nose for a moment, a little hesitant to leap in, but once the promise of no shadows came back into her mind, she jumped in with the enthusiasm of a Lupe when he first saw a Chia.
She got some of the water in her mouth, and climbed out quickly, spitting out some green gunk as her head resurfaced from the water. The Cybunny nearly squealed with joy as she saw some green light hitting the side of the Rainbow Pool. She was glowing!
“Congrats, Kelly!” said Lee, who was obviously as pleased that she was now glowing as she herself was (he’d been getting tired of the light faerie’s glow reaching into his room at night).
Kelly smiled. Now Count Von Roo wouldn’t dare try to come into her room to make her a Halloween Cybunny! She’d see him and throw him out right away! Not to mention, she’d been saving garlic bulbs in her closet.