The Plight of the Esophagor
I was aimlessly wandering the vast expanse of Neopia one afternoon, when I began to think about the Esophagor. Not only has some pretty nifty furniture been fashioned in his likeness, which I happen to own, but he is one of those many bizarre characters that we can so easily take for granted.
We can't exactly say that he's a villain; he's more a victim of hunger than anything else. This in itself is imperative to any discussion of the obscure creature. The fact that he is constantly ravenous is an oddity. An eternally voracious appetite was something bestowed upon unfortunate creatures throughout fairy tales. This then begs the question; should we not feel sorry for the Esophagor?
Inevitably, he came from somewhere. Though he appears to be some kind of gothic golem, someone must have given life to him: whether that be a malevolent wizard, or, indeed, another gothic golem. He too is a sentient being like your little JubJub – bear that in mind next time you criticise him.
I recall the Esophagor being in the Haunted Woods when I first arrived in Neopia, which means he has been stuck there for at least seven years, with Neopets who stumble upon his domain as his only hope of mitigating that hideous hunger which tortures him so. Were the Esophagor a cute little Meerca with a permanent need for nourishment, Neopians would be queuing up out of pity before him. But the major deterrent in regard to this so-called fiend is his appearance - how superficial of you all!
Perhaps we should start a donation drive for a Baby Paint Brush for him. Maybe a change in appearance would turn his unfortunate circumstances around, and the fickle Neopians who have shunned him for so long would come charging to his aid. Or if we put him on a cloud in Faerieland and made him look pathetic and whimper a little like the Abandoned Grundo Plushie of Prosperity, people would sit clicking him for hours in the hope that he would be revived.
Charity in Neopia is badly invested.
Of course, it is difficult to give such an imposing character a cute appearance. Even if he were Pink or Baby, there is still the booming voice and the ominous, clawed appendages to deal with. And the beady red eyes. It is not a change in the Esophagor that is required, but a change in the hearts of Neopians. They willingly sacrifice 1 Million Neopoints in order to feed a frivolous Kadoatie a Draik Egg, yet our gargantuan terrestrial friend continually suffers alone in the shadows of the Haunted Woods.
What is most distressing about this is that the Esophagor even offers a reward for those who will provide him with a temporary fix to his disease. Does this charity on the behalf of one in need of charity himself not stir compassion in your hearts, o fickle Neopians? And precisely what does the poor creature offer in return for a Spooky Doughnut? He gives knowledge, my friends. What greater gift can one bestow upon his fellows than the blessings of wisdom? Would not King Hagan be humbled at the thought of bettering himself with the information held only by the Ancients? Who would willingly share such pearls with him for a morsel? Yet this sophisticated, tormented individual is still shunned by all of Neopia, save those who have enough self-control to stop themselves expressing the horror they feel upon seeing him.
Stories of Neopets disappearing down the oesophagus of the Esophagor (yes, that is more than likely the root of his name) are mere rumours. Substantial evidence is yet to be provided to reinforce these fatuous accusations. Though Turmaculus is notoriously partial to the odd Petpet, which some of the readers have inevitably witnessed themselves, he is not branded a villain and excommunicated by the secular Neopian world. Denizens of Neopia persistently visit that mammoth parasite at the hopes of having their Petpet gain a level, well aware that Fluffy the Meepit may well not be going home with them. The hypocrisy of it all is that cupidity is what fuels people to visit Turmaculus: the very sin that we are all so quick to convict the Esophagor of.
Free omelette is available to all Neopians, yet the one who needs it most of all does not have legs to take him to Tyrannia to fetch some. And even if he were so physically able, torch-and-pitchfork wielding Neopians would undoubtedly plague him wherever he went to temporarily relieve himself of his curse. It is an extremely sad state of affairs – but pity is not financially beneficial. Avarice seems to make the world go around for some, and for others, it makes it fall apart. No one has any interest in the Esophagor’s reward, tidbits of information, except one.
The Brain Tree constantly seeks knowledge. It is arguably his equivalent of the Esophagor’s curse. In exchange for the provision of the information he seeks, he offers an item as a reward. Geography is the only stipulation here. If the Esophagor and the Brain Tree could be brought together, they could each be of tremendous benefit to the other. The Esophagor could share his amazing knowledge with the Brain Tree, and the Brain Tree, in turn, could feed the Esophagor instead of wasting his merchandise on ungrateful Neopians. Thus a solution is offered to the hexes that plague these two entities, branded monstrosities and driven into eerie solitude in the eternal darkness of the Haunted Woods.
It is most appropriate that I offer a caution as conclusion in considering the context of my account. It is common knowledge among the learned that a name, as demonstrated throughout our great history, can act as a kind of omen to the vigilant; take the Darkest Faerie, for example. What if the Esophagor was, indeed, the oesophagus of the earth? What if, as avarice in Neopia swells, people ceased to feed him? What horrors could be expect then, as payment for the judgemental disposition of greedy Neopets? Be wise next time you cruelly taunt the Esophagor as you stroll past with the aroma of your omelette-filled inventory is carried through the stale air of the Haunted Woods. He has a brain like an archive – who is to say he will forget those who assisted him, and those who stuck their noses up at him?