Sammy the Adventurous Arkmite
Sammy felt contained by his tank. Sure, the reflection in the glass was nice; being able to twist and bend and see his disfigured reflection, glistening green in the light. But life in a bowl wasn't very exciting. Tiny brown pebbles huddled together, lining the depth of the small space; the stone castle, rough and bleak, surrounded by wavy dull-green seaweed; the bowl didn’t have much to offer. Sammy never liked his bowl, but he didn’t have a choice.
Sammy's bowl was perched on a dresser; sitting next to a window and overlooking the yard of his owner's neohome in Meridell. He often watched the Mortogs play in the yard, gulping and jumping free. Sammy was jealous of the Mortogs. They had the world at their slimy, green feet; they could journey to where their tiny hearts yearned, every leap and bound reaching further than Sammy could ever dream. The Mortogs don't even realise just how great their lives are, thought Sammy angrily. They have no restrictions, their life isn't enclosed in a bowl, he fumed. With jealousy and rage building up inside his rough, scaled body, Sammy whirled toward the glass barrier keeping him prisoner from his freedom.
The bowl tipped.
Slow, but surely, it fell from its resting place, crashing on the ground. Sammy flopped desperately over the hard floor, quite unlike the softness of the water he had known, with glass fragments scattered around him, his castle broken in two. Sammy panicked. He was scared. He had never left his bowl before. Sammy's mind was racing far too fast with fear for him to realise that he could breathe. Crisp fresh air was racing through his tiny lungs; it stung and Sammy was calm. Sammy's overwhelmed mind now blank, he propped himself up with one fin. He was suddenly aware of everything around him: the harsh grinding of the lawnmower reverberating from outside the window, the light breeze caressing his small body, the fresh scent of what he thought must be freshly cut grass. From nowhere, a great big Whinny jumped in front of Sammy, neighing loudly and stomping. The ground shuddered under Sammy from the thudding of the great Whinny. Flopping and sprawling, Sammy moved as fast as his little fins would push him, trying with all his might to escape the fierce predator. It must have escaped Ye Olde Petpets, Sammy thought frantically as he fled.
Finally out of reach of the scary animal, Sammy rested on the windowsill and watched the Whinny sulk out of the room. Maybe up here, he thought, I will be out of harm's way. With a sigh of relief, Sammy turned to the window. There was so much he longed to do. So many places he wanted to explore, things to see, scents to indulge in. Peering forward to get a better look at the world now at his wake, Sammy slipped. He fell from the windowsill. For what seemed an eternity, Sammy fell.
Until, with a loud thud, he landed. Sammy was too excited and hopeful to be hurt, and swiftly continued observing his new life, brushing himself clean with his supple fin. The scent of cut grass was much stronger now that he lay on it, rough against his slimy scales. Sammy was eager to continue his adventure, though as he prepared to make his way, looking around him, he remembered of the danger of the Whinny. I must be cautious of such a treacherous world, he breathed warily.
As he slowly made his way across the lawn, Sammy became hot. The sun blazed down on him, scorching his small body. So Sammy, thinking himself to be quite clever, ventured into the shade of the great red Shredding Tree in the middle of the yard. The great, vibrantly coloured shrub shaded him well from the sun. Ah, he sighed, thankful for the end of the blistering heat, this is much better. Sammy had lived for this. He had always longed to live his life the way that all of the other Petpets lived, running and frolicking free among the gardens, playing with their friend pets. Venturing wildly into the berry fields and exuberantly feasting on the luscious array of berries! Oh how Sammy longed to try a Furanga Fruit or a Tasty Turnip Tarter. He imagined the juicy, sweet flavour they would have, and lost track of the time he had spent mesmerised in the shade. How long he had rested in his happiness, Sammy didn’t know; he didn’t care. It was amazing.
The bliss Sammy indulged in while he observed his new world was suddenly broken by the piercing roar of the lawnmower. He had ignorantly come to rest right in the path of the lawnmower! Oh no, he screamed, his small body seething with fear, and Sammy flipped and flopped as the lawnmower chased him. Closer and closer it prowled. Sammy was growing weak and tired without the ease of swimming, and the lawnmower was fast catching up to him. Suddenly, it was still. It had stopped just short of Sammy's furled little tail, shaking from his fierce fright. Sammy flumped over, exhaustion taking over, and all was black.
Sammy didn’t feel the soft hands of the boy pick him up and relieve him of the harsh grass pressing into him. He was too tired. He didn’t notice the long, graceful, warm walk back into the house. He didn't even discern the new place he had been set. The exhaustion created by the harsh world was too strong. So he slept.
By the time Sammy woke, the sun had moved from its place high in the sky. It was now setting, now only just visible, peeping over the tips of the Meridell fields. Sammy rolled. It took time before he realised just how easy it had been to move. With a shock, he realised that he were back in his bowl! Not the same bowl, but just as good as. With the smooth flowing water gliding over his scales, Sammy swam around and around his bowl. He was excited to be back. He was excited to be in his bowl. He had missed the small cluster of pebbles sitting on the bottom of his bowl, that were in this one too; and with a chuckle to himself, Sammy noticed that they looked like a little family hugging one another.
Sammy swam and swam, weaving among the seaweed, flowing in motion with the water; so blissfully. The castle was there too, a large crack down the middle. But as Sammy swam into the hole, he thought that it felt more like a home than a piece of cracked, shaped rock. He felt safe here. Safe from the Whinny. Safe from the lawnmower and falling from ledges; there were no dangers here. Sammy felt that he never wanted to leave his bowl again; as exciting and fulfilling as his adventure into the world had been, he much preferred the warm safety of his bowl. Though he had ended in the very place he had begun, Sammy felt as though his journey had been worth the while for what he had experienced, for it made him realise just how great his life was. He wouldn't trade the feast of a million Meridell fruits for this life.
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