The Squid Hat
"Nick, where's your brother this time," a sighing Zafara mother asked her son. Nick was a blue Kiko wondering the same. As he took a sip of Neocola, he replied "I dunno. Think he's in his room, 'inventing' again..." Grace, the mother Zafara of the family, was already walking toward the stairs. "Skim! Come down and eat! Your pizza is going to get cold!"
Skim, a red Poogle, looked up from his sketching. "Fine! Fine! Don't have a Kau!" He got up and quickly he stepped on a piece of paper. He looked at the floor, finding ripped and crumbled up paper all over. Then he whispered to himself, "But if she sees my room, she might have a whole farm..."
Skim was the youngest of his family, always looking up at his brothers and sister towering over him. Nick was a blue Kiko; he was in a band with his friends, and even had the wearable sunglasses and headband to prove it. Shen, the shadow Lupe, was the oldest in the family and could be obnoxious, as older brothers were. He also proudly wore the whole super hero Lupe set. Then there was Ally, a pink Acara that was always a bit snooty, and she wore the Acara Golden Headpiece and carried a Shenkuu-inspired parasol when she went out. Even the mother of the family, Grace the blue Zafara, wore the Pretty Pink Flower hat from time to time. After a while, Skim came along, and the family didn't have enough neopoints to buy a wearable item for him. That's when he went into inventing.
"'Bout time you came. Or else I would've eaten your pizza," Shen teased.
Nick took a big bite of Pizza and asked with his mouth full, "What were you inventing this time?"
Ally wrinkled her nose at Nick. "Don't talk with your mouth full, slob, I'll lose my appetite."
Skim looked at them and answered, "I'm making a design for a hat."
Shen looked at the Poogle. "Is it anything like the stamp hat you gave up on a month ago?"
Skim sighed. "No. And who knew stamps didn't stick to hats, anyway?"
"Okay, then what about the yarn hat you started..."
"Didn't have enough yarn."
"The 100 percent Babaa wool hat?"
"The farmer yelled at me when I tried to shave them. Okay, I get your point. But this one is different! I swear! I have the design laid out; wanna see?"
"After dinner, sweetie. Now eat up, okay?"
Grace answered for Skim's siblings. "Fine, Mom..."
Skim sighed. Parents...
Dinner went by, and afterward Skim dragged his siblings upstairs to show them his design. Skim picked up the paper and faced it toward the others. "This... is the Squid Hat! You see, it has eyes there and there... and it has these cool tentacles hanging down, cool huh? All I need is some of Mom's fabrics, some google eyes, and I'll put it all together! What do you think?"
The three were speechless for a moment. Then they burst out laughing. "Ah ha ha! So, you think pets would actually WEAR that," the shadow Lupe burst, holding back giggles.
"That thing... is hideous." Ally laughed.
Nick was laughing as well. "Dude... and I thought the Potato Sack was crazy, man!"
Skim kicked his siblings out, holding back tears.
He walked over to his pet small giant squid's tank and talked to him. "What do you think of my design, Skiddy?" The squid just swam around happily, like he always did. "Hm... you're right. I should make my hat anyway! ...But how will people notice it?" Skiddy swam up to Skim and said nothing. "Yeah, that's a great idea! I should show it to people around, and see what they think of it. Thanks, Skiddy!" The Poogle ran out of the room, and his squid just blinked in confusion.
During the next few days, Skim spent day and night making his hat. He pricked his paws sewing the fabrics every now and then, and he had to start over multiple times. The google eyes kept rolling away, and they didn't usually fit in right. Skim also had trouble making the tentacles, because they had to be the same length each. Not too long, or too short either. On the fourth day, Skim was exhausted, so he lay on his bed for a rest. He stared at the remaining parts to be done to the hat, and doubted if he should make the hat at all. Then he rolled over and looked at Skiddy's tank on the side table. Skiddy looked at him, and Skim could have sworn that his pet smiled at him. That's when he realized that he should make the hat. So he went back to work, this time, full of energy. After a few more hours, it was perfect. Now, it was time to test it on the public.
He walked into the living room with his hat on, and his siblings stared. Nick raised his eyebrow. "So... you actually made it," he said, shaking his head.
"Yep," an excited Poogle answered. "Now I'll show it to other Neopians. Wish me luck!"
Shen muttered under his breath, "You're sure gonna need it..." After Skim left, the siblings burst out laughing, just like before.
The test was not as good as Skim had hoped. Actually, it was horrible. The worst ever, maybe. I'm taking about an F- kind of test. Adult pets snickered, young pets laughed and pointed. A baby neopet even said; "Mommy, what's that eating that Poogle's head?"
Skim was enraged when an adult Draik walked up to him and commented, "Kid, maybe you should get a hobby."
Skim was beyond blushing at this point. After about an hour of insults, Skim had had it. He practically ripped the hat off, and stomped off. "Stupid idea... stupid hat... why did I even make this? My siblings were right! This is a dumb hat..." He then threw it in a nearby trash can. A news reporter Kacheek saw him toss the hat, and he went over and picked it up. He examined it, then put it in his bag and went somewhere...
The next day, Skim went for his morning walk, humiliated about how many pets remembered him and looked. But, for an odd reason, he didn't hear any insults. As he went to get the news for his family, a Kacheek was yelling out the latest. "Extra, extra! New wearable item now in stores! Get the info here!"
Skim heard this and rushed to get the paper. Pets were gathering the news, and seemed to be enjoying it. He heard surprising comments.
"Gee, I feel bad about insulting it earlier."
"We have to get to the clothes shop!"
"Front page news, too... must be something pretty good!"
Skim quickly took one of the papers, and on the front page, big letters wrote: 'New Wearable Hat! Get These Squid Hats Before It's Too Late!' Skim was thinking, "Wait... SQUID hats?!" He looked below the letters, and he saw a picture of a squid hat. His squid hat. The one he gave up on yesterday. Already he saw a handful of pets wearing his very own hat.
The Kacheek reporter, the same one that found the hat, tapped Skim's shoulder. He looked over, and the Kacheek winked at him. Then he smiled and said, "Good job, kid."