Messenger: The Journey North - Part Two
Her name was Serenity and she was a beautiful pink Kadoatie. She gave me a friendly mew when she arrived. She was perfect in every way.
Well, almost every way.
Serenity had an infection in her eyes. She was temporarily blind.
I couldn’t believe it. Even Rooli hadn’t treated an eye infection before, and he had been training as a doctor for three years now. I wasn’t even officially in training yet and this was probably the hardest case of the century.
Mom smiled. “If you have true potential, I’m sure this won’t be too hard for you,” she said sweetly. I gritted my teeth in anger. Some people could be so annoying.
“You can have Examining Room 1,” Mom said in a brisker, more normal tone. Examining Room 1 was for treating diseases and infections and things like that. Examining Room 2... well, I should be glad I wasn’t going to work on a petpet in that room.
Soon Mom and Rooli left to Examining Room 3 to check up on the Puppyblews. I sighed and lifted Serenity’s cage up onto the table in Examining Room 1. Across the door were the patients that were waiting for their turn to use the room. Thunder was one of the petpets next in line.
What could I do to cure Serenity? I knew next to nothing about curing infections. The only thing I knew about them was that if the infection got really bad you would need to use antibiotics.
What should I do first? I decided to sneak around and pick up some tips from Mom. The only thing was that I wouldn’t be able to let her now what I was doing, or BAM. My hopes of becoming a petpet doctor were less than zero.
I carefully tiptoed out into the hall, being careful to not let anybody see me. As I passed Examining Room 3, I saw that the door was open. Rooli was inside checking the pulse of one of the Puppyblews. I smiled at the petpet’s sparkling eyes and lolling tongue.
There were exactly nineteen Puppyblews in the room, some of them in cages, some sitting on the examination table, and the rest in various places around the room. Wait-Lucy always ordered shippings of twenty petpets at a time. Where was the last Puppyblew?
I padded quietly down the hall and peeked into the various rooms as I passed them. When I passed Overnight Room D a familiar face poked out, sniffing the air cautiously. With a squeal of happiness, Pecan came barreling out into the hall-into me.
“Pecan!” I hissed. “You’re going to blow my cover! And how in Neopia did you get out of your cage?” He panted happily and hopped onto my shoulder, folding his leathery wings down against his back and digging his claws into my shoulder. I winced and went inside the room to check Pecan’s cage.
Of course! Pecan had used his spiked tail to pick the lock. I groaned as I looked at the state of Pecan’s cage. The fluffy red blanket was mussed and soiled, and he had upset the food bowl. Mynci Gal’s Tasty Wholesome Gallion Food (Flavor: Beef Stew Pie) was littered all over the cage floor. Somehow Pecan had managed to twist the cap off of his Yullie Water Bottle, which had completely soaked his cage.
“That was a free gift from Clark,” I hissed to Pecan, shaking his water bottle angrily. He closed his eyes and lifted his chin defiantly. I rolled my eyes. Oh, well. Time to get to work.
I folded his towel neatly and slid it down the laundry chute built into the room. Out of a cupboard came a new, unopened bag of Mynci Gal’s Tasty Wholesome Gallion Food (Flavor: Salmon Steak), which was poured into his food bowl. Pecan leaped into the cage and began messily eating.
Next I grabbed a new towel (this one a hot, girly-girl pink--he deserved it) from a stack of freshly washed towels by the door. I replaced the key lock that Pecan had picked with a combination lock. Let the little devil try to pick that!
Next I would have to refill the water bottle. There were no sinks in the overnight rooms, but I could use the sink in the bathing room.
Unfortunately, Mom was in the bathing room.
Her back was turned when I came in. I swallowed nervously and crawled over to the sink. I turned it on noiselessly and began to fill the water bottle.
“I know you’re there, Emma,” said Mom. I froze. “Come here,” she continued. I nodded and tiptoed over to where Mom was bending over a bath bucket, washing a scrape that the last Puppyblew had on his paw pad.
“What are you doing here, Emma?” Mom asked.
“Um... Pecan’s water bottle was empty so I went to refill it.” I showed Mom the Yullie Water Bottle as proof.
Mom sighed. “Sure, honey...” We were both silent for a while. Mom broke the silence. “I’m washing this cut,” she explained, pointing to the Puppyblew. “I don’t want it to get infected.” I nodded. I had already known that. Why had she told me? I shrugged and padded over to the sink. Within moments the bottle was filled. I sprinted out into the hall and then into Overnight Room D. Pecan had his face screwed up as he tried to find a place on the combination lock to insert his tail. I smiled. “Boo!” I shouted. He jumped and backed away, licking his chest fur in a show of unconcern.
I quickly screwed the water bottle back onto the cage and headed back into Examining Room 1. Serenity had curled up in her cage and was having a nap.
I unlocked the cage door and gently shook her. She sniffed the air, recognized me, and leaped into my arms. I cuddled her, thinking. How could I help Serenity? Why had Mom explained what she was doing with the Puppyblew? I already knew that cleaning a wound helped cure and prevent infection... I needed to worry about Serenity’s infection, anyway... wait... “That’s it!” I shouted. Serenity blinked confusedly. “Washing! I can wash your infection!”
In exactly twelve point nine seconds (if I had been counting), I was in the bathing room, along with Serenity. Mom was already gone, presumably back to Examining Room 3 with Rooli.
I filled one of the largest buckets with water from the sink and set it down on the floor. Next to the sink was a pile of washcloths, so I grabbed one of them. Thankfully Serenity was one of the few Kadoaties who doesn’t really mind water, so I had no trouble at all convincing Serenity to take a bath.
Serenity mewled happily as I gently scrubbed her eyes. In less than a minute, her wound was clean. I smiled. A few days of this and Serenity would be fine! Grinning, I quickly dried Serenity off with a big, fluffy white towel and carried her into Overnight Room D, where she would be spending this night and perhaps others.
Darn it. The only empty cage in the room was right next to Pecan. The little beast would probably spill his food and water everywhere and keep Serenity up all night. I knew how important sleep was for healing a cut like Serenity’s, so I decided to have a little talk with Pecan.
“Pecan,” I said in a very serious voice, “Serenity needs her beauty sleep tonight, so I’m going to have to ask you to stay quiet... or else.” I drew my finger across my throat. Pecan yawned unconcernedly.
After Serenity was settled in, I went to check up with Rooli and Mom. They were just finishing up with the last Puppyblew when I came in. Mom waved to me and pointed to the cages containing the remaining Puppyblews that had already been checked. I instantly understood. Mom wanted me to take the Puppyblews back to Lucy.
Nodding, I began piling the cages onto a small cart that stood outside by the front door. The cart was rather small and easy to pull. I hummed a tune as I pulled the cart through Neopia Central and towards the Petpet Shop.
Lucy was behind the cashier’s desk, serving a tall Nimmo who was buying a Triffin. Lucy waved to me as I poked my head in through the door. I waved back and began carrying the cages into the store, leaving the cart outside by the door. The second I placed the final cage on the shelf, pets swarmed over to look at the new Puppyblews. Within two minutes half of them were gone.
“Thanks, Emma,” said Lucy, smiling at me and handing me a sack of neopoints. “Give this to your mom, please. Oh, and tell Rooli I said hi.” I nodded and ran outside, ready to begin the long journey home.
The days went by quickly. Soon the day came when Clark, Pecan, Thunder and I would be traveling north to deliver Pecan and Thunder to their owners. I awoke early and dressed quickly, gobbled up some Peanut Crunch Cereal, and trotted into Overnight Room D to check up on Serenity and to pick up Thunder and Pecan. Serenity was doing well, she was snoozing peacefully and her vision was next to perfect.
Once I had Pecan and Thunder locked inside a large wooden crate (complete with air holes), I dragged the crate to the front door. Lila, Rooli, and Dad weren’t up yet, but Mom was. She smiled at me and gave me a thumbs-up before opening the door and sending me out on the greatest adventure of my life: the adventure north.
To be continued...