I Have Hope
This is the sequel to the story, 'I'll Never Forget', and it's a MUCH better read it you've read the prequel.
The sun shone brightly through the glass window, crawling gently onto my face and sitting there until it warmed me up enough to wake me up. Like the way they should on a perfect day, wild beekadoodles chirped from the trees, and cool air swirled around me, trying to undo what the sun was trying to do.
Pushing the blankets aside, I crawled off of the bed and stretched slowly, savoring the peaceful morning that I had right now. If I’d known what I would be going downstairs to face, I would’ve stayed there longer, perhaps forever. Giggles and shrieks carried themselves up the stairway to crawl into my ears and make me eager to get breakfast. No doubt my siblings were already enjoying the gooey masses of chococherry pancakes Starbells forced upon us once every week.
“Lerina!” shouted a voice from over to my right. Immediately a pile of snow launched itself at me, and I found myself peering down at a Shoyru, giggling as it bounced in place. “Guess what?”
“Mom left a huge pile of pancakes on the kitchen table! Jake’s stuffing himself silly, of course, but she left a note on the table telling us to help ourselves! This is great!”
I was confused. Our owner had left us a note? Usually she sat at the table every morning with us, and moderated how much food we took. Then she read from the weekly Neopian Times issue, which I really enjoyed but my brothers hated, being chock full of energy.
Where was Starbells?
Over at the kitchen table, I found a disco Kyrii with a massive chococherry stain around his mouth; he was leaning back in his chair, burping contentedly. Only two pancakes were left on the plate where the stack had been, and a half eaten one was left on the Kyrii’s plate.
Jake had definitely taken advantage of our owner’s absence.
My other brother, the snow Shoyru, leapt over to his own seat and stuck a fork into one of the pancakes. I stood still. I just didn’t feel like eating, because I had some odd feeling floating through me. I had to find out where Starbells was, first.
The doorbell rang before I could move to do anything. Now, since I was the only one not eating, I rushed over to answer it. As I strode down the hall, the doorbell was being pressed more and more frequently, as if whoever was behind it was had some urgent reason.
A starry Yurble stood on our porch that I knew very well. We’d been pound mates back when my last owner had abandoned me, and he’d been the reason that I lived with my current one. We loved each other as if we’d been born as brother and sister, instead of cousins, like we currently were.
“Lerina, I’ve got to talk to you,” he said. “It’s about Space and Starbells.”
“Come inside and shut the door then,” I said. “It’s not like you’re a stranger.”
He did so, and then took a sharp breath, looking down. It looked like he was having a hard time saying what he was about to. A pang made itself known in my chest, and when he spoke, he said what I’d been fearing this whole time.
“Space and Starbells have left Neopia.”
“What?” I asked, not believing my ears. “Why? How could they?”
“Space left a note on my bed,” he said. “Apparently he took my sister to the pound last night, and he left a whole lot of neopoints on the table. Here, read this.”
The Yurble shoved a piece of paper into my hooves, and I unfolded it with growing dread. Our owners had left us. After they’d adopted us and told us they were never going to say goodbye, they were gone. How could they have broken their promise?
It’s so hard to write this, buddy. I don’t know how I’m gonna tell you this. We had a lot of fun together and all, but I’m leaving. By the time you read the letter, I’m probably going to be gone.
Starbells and I left some NP on the table in the living room for you, for you to take yourself to the pound and her pets to the pound as well. We don’t want you guys to be alone...
Tears poured down from my eyes and only the paper. When I was reading, the truth had sunk in. We were alone. We had been abandoned, for a lack of anything better to describe what’d happened. Our owners were not coming back. A sobbing sound came from my left, and I turned my head to see that Zach was crying, too.
“What’re we going to tell Jake and Nate?” I asked, nodding towards the kitchen where there was a food fight in progress. “They don’t know. Starbells only left us a note saying to help ourselves to the food.”
“We have to tell them something,” Zach said solemnly.
My brothers took the news better than I thought they would. Jake just sat in his chair silently, and Nate cried, but at least they didn’t throw tantrums, like they’d been known to when Starbells had told them they couldn’t have a certain action figure or toy car.
“So are we going to go to the pound?” I asked them.
Jake looked up at me. “So Mom really is gone? This isn’t a joke?”
I nodded. How could I joke about something like this?
The air was silent for quite a while, except for the noises from outside. The tension was great in the air when the snow Shoyru spoke.
Moonlight poured down from the sky a couple of days later by the time Zach and I decided to leave for the pound ourselves. I’d wanted to make sure my brothers were in good homes before I’d put myself in, and they both went home with happy people. Nate had gone home with a person who’d never had a painted pet before, but when I saw the look on his new owner’s face, I could tell that he wouldn’t just be with that person as a trophy pet, like I’d feared from the start.
“Are you ready?” Zach asked, turning his face to look at mine.
I nodded. I’d had a couple of days to get used to the fact that I was going to have to endure the loss of another owner. My heart had squeezed painfully for the first day, but as I thought about it more and more, I realized that I didn’t have it as bad as many of the pets whose owners had left Neopia. Starbells had cared enough to give me the chance to find another home. Not many pets had that chance even. I’d seen the old, broken down neohomes, with mostly plain looking pets that had tattered, dirty fur. They weren’t so lucky as I was.
Sure, I was facing the chance that I’d be adopted by an owner who only wanted me because I was a shadow Uni, but at least I’d also have the chance to find somebody who cared about me.
I smiled gently as the old, yellow Techo locked me in my cell. I had a future to look forward to.
I have hope.