A Forgotten Past, An Unwritten Future...
This is the story of how _Nyxi_ came to join the family, written by _Nyxi_ himself. Enjoy!
If you want to hear my story, the first thing you will probably want to know is that for more years than I can remember, I lived alone in the forest. I knew no other home; I talked to no one; I had even forgotten my name. Clothed in a well-worn cloak, I wandered through the forest, walking wherever my hooves took me. Days upon days slipped away, with no meaning or purpose. They became the past I never wish to return to. I am freed now; I escaped on one sacred night.
I had been walking silently along the edge of the forest. There was a full moon in the sky. I remember that I stopped to look at it, the gentle glow emanating from its edges. I had been started out of my thoughts when I heard movement behind me. I swiftly stood and melded back into the forest, watching. Then I spotted the source of the sound. A young Neopet was hurriedly walking down the path. She was clad in a ridiculous outfit, complete with a cape and feathered hat. She also had a bag full of candy. Her face was calm, but the way her eyes darted back and forth betrayed that she was not familiar in this part of the forest. Intrigued, I followed.
The Neopet stopped at a fork in the road. She seemed to be debating about which way she should go. It was then I realized someone else was approaching. My ears picked up on the clopping of hooves. The Neopet was lost in thought, however, and failed to notice. Suddenly, the bag she was holding loosely was snatched from her. It was another Neopet, the same species as me. This one was red, though, with leathery wings. It took a sharp left and kept running. The startled girl took off running after it. She soon tripped over her cloak and fell.
Even now I can not explain why I acted like I did. I compulsively took off after the winged Neopet. Knowing the forest better than he, I bounded through the familiar foliage and soon caught up. I tackled him and he crashed to the ground underneath me.
“Hey! Watch it, buddy!” He attempted to shove me off, but I kept him pinned to the ground.
“Why did you just steal that?” I said gruffly. My voice sounded strange to me. With no one to talk to, I had never spoken. It was then I realized how lonely I had become.
“Jeezum! It’s just candy. Take it, if you care so much. Just let me up!” He began struggling again. I got off him and stepped back. He stood up, shoved the candy at me, and left at a gallop. The night soon swallowed him.
The girl ran up to me. “Thank you.” She smiled. “Who are you?”
“Give me your name and I shall give you mine,” I countered.
She grinned. “Fine, then. I’m _Xweeks_, and my owner is _fimbulwolf_.”
I looked at her closely. “Xweeks?”
“Yes, but you have to say it the Neopian way. It’s _Xweeks_.”
“What kind of Neopet are you anyways?” I wondered aloud.
“I’m a Xweetok.” She gave me a funny look.
I couldn’t remember ever hearing about Xweetoks. Then again, I hardly remembered the name for anything. What was my species called again?
“Okay, then. Do Xweetoks always dress like that?”
_Xweeks_ burst out laughing, “Honestly, have you lived under a rock your entire life? It’s the last day of the Month of Collecting. In other words, it’s Halloween!”
I sighed. “You are not that far off by saying I live under a rock.”
She examined me closely. “Look at your clothes. They are stained and tattered!” Then her eyes grew large with realization. “Do you have a home?”
I shook my head. “The forest is the only home I recall having.”
“My owner will take care of you!” _Xweeks_ announced. “Come home with me!”
The idea appealed to me. I looked at the dark forest. Then I turned back to the Xweetok. Something kept me from saying yes. I shook my head once more. “I’m sorry, I just couldn’t.”
She opened her mouth to argue. She stopped herself though, and sat down on her haunches. After a moment a smile slowly spread across her face. She then said, “But I’m lost, and I need help finding my way home.”
It was just a different tactic, and I knew it. But I couldn’t stop myself. “Where do you live?”
“171144 Safari Lane,” she answered promptly.
“That’s close to the forest. In other words, not too far from here. I’ll show you the way.” I had lucked out. Since Safari Lane was so close to the forest, I knew just where it was. I turned and began walking. _Xweeks_ followed.
She didn’t say a word until we were very close. “I recognize it here!” She began running. I could have left now, but I still followed. She stopped at a large one-floor house and ran toward it. I saw a person standing there. I concluded that she must be _fimbulwolf_.
“_Xweeks_!” she cried out. “Where were you? I was so worried...”
“It’s okay, I just got a little lost. This Ixi helped me out, though!” She stopped short. “What did you say your name was again?”
Ixi. That was it. I stepped forward. “I never said what my name was.”
_Xweeks_ stood there impatiently. “Well then, what is it?”
I sighed. “The truth is—I don’t remember.”
_fimbulwolf_ gasped. “Sweetie, don’t you have a home?”
Before I could respond, _Xweeks_ turned to her owner and started speaking rapidly, “No, he doesn’t; you just have to take him in! He is really nice, he helped me out, but he has no family, he can’t even remember his name! Please Mom? Please?!”
_fimbulwolf_ turned towards me. “If that is what he wants.”
I stood there in silence. What should I say? This was a life-changing decision. I knew that a life with _Xweeks_ and her owner was surely better than the life I led, but the unfamiliar concept of living with a family made me think twice. I couldn’t go back if I accepted.
_Xweeks_ jumped up suddenly. “I know!” She dashed into the house.
I thought my choices over while she was gone. I still hadn’t come with an answer by the time she came back. She was holding a little petpet in her arms.
“This is a Halloween Doglefox! I just painted him today. Isn’t he cute? He’s all yours—if you stay with us.”
_fimbulwolf_ was staring off into space absentmindedly. “_Nyxi_...” she murmured to herself. Then her head snapped toward me. “_Nyxi_! That’s it! You’re name can be _Nyxi_, like the spirits of the night.”
_Nyxi_. Where had I heard that name before? Memories long forgotten flashed through my mind. Father?...
I abruptly made my mind up. “_Nyxi_.” I gave a curt nod, and walked forward. Taking the Doglefox from _Xweeks_’s arms, I said, “I’ll name him Nyktos.”
_Xweeks_ squealing with joy, _fimbulwolf_ giving me a hug and taking me into the house... that concluded the night.
As of today, I still wear my old forest clothes. _fimbulwolf_ fixed them up for me, but I could not get rid of them. I do not wish to return to my solitary life in the forest, and I believe I never shall. But the forest was still an experience in my life, and the clothes are the link to the past, as well as my name. Perhaps one day other secrets buried deep within me will surface, but only when the time is right. And with those final words, I bring my story to a close.
Author’s Note: This is my very first submission to the Neopian Times! If you’re reading this, a miracle has occurred. Also, I am aware the Halloween Issue of the Neopian Times has come and gone, but my story is not directly about Halloween. I thought that the issue afterwards would be ideal. Thanks for reading!