Seeking Summer: Part Two
I awoke to see purple chairs with wings on them. How odd, I thought. Where was I?
A shriek broke the silence. Strange. It sounded like a pet, I thought vaguely. What in Neopia was a pet doing here, of all places? Then I snapped into reality. Summer!
I tried to stand, then realized I was tied to a chair. Oh no, I thought, with growing horror, I’m a captive, too!
Wildly twisting to see how the knots were tied, I struggled to stand. It seemed nearly impossible to get free. I sadly sat back down, before remembering that I had a weapon on me: my teeth!
I stretched out to the rope binding my paws and began to chew. It’s lucky, I thought, that the faerie didn’t think to bind my mouth as well.
Once one paw was free, I set to work on the other, all the while turning to see if anyone was coming to check on me. I jumped at the slightest noise. Once both of my paws were untied, I quickly loosened the rest of the knots.
Jumping up, I ran down a dark hallway until I reached what seemed to be the living room. Pictures of Jhudora covered the walls. The familiar faerie was bending over a large cauldron, and a striped Kacheek was lying on the floor, also tied to a chair.
“My darling little Kacheek,” the faerie cackled as she stirred the contents of the cauldron. “Before long the potion will be ready, and we will go to Jhudora to receive my reward!”
Reward? I was beginning to feel very suspicious about the whole situation. Reward for what?
Summer struggled to break loose from her ropes. Her back was to me, so I couldn’t signal or contact her in any way.
“Now, darling, once you drink this, all of Neopia will know the name Selena!” the faerie said gleefully.
I had to do something! Who knew what that potion did?!
Summer strained to be free. I could see her tail swishing anxiously back and forth.
The faerie Selena turned, and I dove, just in time, behind the couch. I didn’t want to know what would happen if she saw me.
“And now, a bit of the prisoner,” she murmured, reaching out to Summer. I could see her trembling, and, looking down, I saw that my own legs were shaking. I squeezed my eyes shut.
After a swift ‘swish’, there was a pause, then a plop as something was dropped into the pot. Probably part of Summer, I realized in horror.
Cautiously opening one eye, then another, I peered out from my sanctuary. No body parts seemed to be missing from my sister. Then I saw a trail of pale purple fluff leading from Summer to the cauldron. Well, I thought, beginning to feel a little more relieved, fur isn’t so bad.
Selena stirred the contents once more, the scooped a spoonful into a cup. Slowly approaching Summer, she spoke in a soothing voice.
“Just drink a bit,” she whispered, her eyes gleaming red in the firelight. “Just a sip...”
Summer twisted and fought, desperately trying to avoid the terrible concoction. Trembling even harder, she screamed.
Selena laughed. “Don’t be afraid.” She brought the cup to Summer’s mouth, and without warning, thrust the contents inside.
“NO!” I shouted, unable to hide any longer. Coming around the other side of the couch, I pointed a shaking paw at Selena. “You’ll never get away with this!”
She looked up. “Oh. You’re awake.” She smiled sweetly. “And next.”
“I’ll never drink anything of yours!” I raced over to my sister. I needed to see what had happened to her.
“Summer!” I slapped her cheeks, like in all the stories. “Say something!”
“Something...” Summer murmured.
I frowned. This isn’t right. “Say ‘I secretly like bottles of sand’!”
“I secretly like bottles of sand.” Summer repeated without showing any emotions.
I began to feel horrified. Summer hates bottles of sand! What’s happened to her?
“Wait...” I pointed a paw at Selena. “Is this a joke? Are you and her... in this together?”
“No.” She got up and began to pace. “I received a mission from Jhudora. To create a potion that will make the drinker do anything anyone says. And it worked.” She smiled widely. “Your sister here is at my complete mercy. She would jump off this cloud if I told her to.”
“And... and what’s the point of this... this mission?” I asked, already dreading the answer.
Selena faced me, her face glowing red. “Your sister’s job is to collect more followers of my leader,” she whispered. “No one will be able to resist such a sweet, innocent little Kacheek. Before long, all of Neopia will be under the rule of Jhudora!”
I stared, horrified, and Summer sat motionless between us.
“You’ll... you’ll never get away with this!” I repeated, backing up. “I’ll... I’ll tell! You’ll be captured, and all your partners in crime as well!”
Selena laughed. “And you think they’ll all believe a little Gelert like you?” she asked me, her face shining with triumph.
I felt all my hopes sink. She was right. She was completely, totally right.
“Now, it’s your turn!” Selena approached me. I turned to flee, but she was too quick and grabbed me by my tail. The next thing I knew, I was lying miserably next to Summer, who was still staring at the ceiling.
Selena swooped over me, holding a cup. I twisted just as desperately as Summer had, but I knew it was no use. I would also be under her spell.
“You drink this.” She wedged the cup between my teeth (my paws were tied together) and turned back to the cauldron.
I sat, petrified, for a moment. I couldn’t drink it. I just couldn’t. So I did the only thing I could think of at the time: I tilted my head sideways so the cup’s contents spilled onto the floor. I shifted so I covered the stain, and arranged my face into what I hoped was a blank stare.
Selena whirled around, and after seeing that I was ‘hypnotized’, did a small dance.
“I’ll be rewarded so greatly, beyond anyone’s dreams, I’ve managed to put two silly pets under my spell!”
Actually, only one, I thought, trying to keep my face as blank as a rock. It’s not as easy as it seems, I’m telling you; I wanted to laugh at my convincing acting ability.
“This calls for a drink,” she said, turning back to the fire. I took advantage of this distraction by using the same trick as before: my teeth.
Before long, I was free, and slowly reaching for an Ice Shard that was lying nearby. Quietly getting up, I crept up behind Selena and in one swift motion, brought the Shard down over her head. She collapsed in a heap on the floor, totally knocked out. Score!
Beaming, I spun around to see my next problem: Summer. Quickly running over, I spoke in a low voice.
“Summer, you need to get up.”
“I want you to follow me. Don’t let me get out of your sight, and don’t talk to anyone besides me, unless I tell you to. Do you understand?”
“Good. This way.”
I snuck over to the door, checking to see that Summer was still following. Quietly opening the door, I held it open so that Summer could file out. I shut it and whispered, “Run after me, Summer!”
We both shot towards the lights of Faerie City. Looking around and seeing how dark it was, I realized how worried Elizabeth and Kiya must be. We’ve been gone for hours.
I kept looking back, seeing that Summer was still trailing dutifully behind me.
She did, so quickly she nearly fell flat on her face.
“Listen to me, Summer. We need to find a faerie. Not a Dark one. Any other is fine. When you see one, tell me. But listen, Summer. NOT a Dark faerie. Understand?”
She nodded again.
“Great! Come on!”
We began to run once more, away from the dark side of Faerieland. As we fled, a new problem occurred to me: was there even a cure for this potion? What if Summer was stuck like this forever? Actually, I thought, that wouldn’t be so bad. She couldn’t make fun of me or Kiya anymore.
“You see a faerie?”
I have never been so happy to see a Fire faerie in my entire life. I could have hugged her, I was so pleased.
The faerie turned. I ran over to her, Summer following me.
“I need help,” I panted. “I mean, she does.” I pointed to Summer.
The faerie inspected her quickly, then faced me. “She seems to have taken some sort of potion.”
“Yes.” I nudged my sister. “Tell the faerie what happened in that house, Summer. Every detail.”
Summer, in a bored tone of voice, told what had happened since she entered Selena’s house. After she couldn’t remember anything else (when she had taken the potion), I stepped in and repeated the rest.
“So?” I asked, after I was done. “Is there a cure?”
The faerie paused, then nodded.
“Well?” I pressed her. “What is it?”
“It is known by faeries as the Ocean of Prosperity, though it is also known as the Fountain of Dreams, or the Pool of Wishes. It can only be found when needed. It can only be entered by those who have a purpose for it. And when you get inside, a wish of your choice will be fulfilled.”
“But... where is it?” I inquired.
“As I mentioned,” the faerie slowly said, “it can be found only when you need it. It has been known to turn up in the castle, or in the middle of the Poogle race track. Anywhere in Faerieland, it can be found.”
It all sounded very suspicious to me. A whole ocean that shows up when you need it? So it’s just going to appear out of thin air, is it?
“Well, thanks for your help. And please try to do something about Selena. I don’t want other pets to be less fortunate than we are.”
The faerie smiled. “I will alert the Queen about it. And good luck!” she called before disappearing in a puff of red smoke.
I kicked a piece of cloud angrily. “Just show up, does it?” I muttered. “So we’re just supposed to wait for it?”
I glumly sat down. “Sit, Summer.” She did.
We sat, motionless. Bored, I began to pick at the cloud in front of me. “How strange,” I thought aloud. “This cloud seems to be quite thin.”
In a flash, the Fire faerie’s words came back to me: “It can only be found when you need it.”
“This is it, Summer!” I said excitedly, digging at the cloud. “The Fountain of Dreams! Help me dig!”
After a few minutes, we were staring into a black hole. I poked my head through. I could see a faint sparkle of water. I took a deep breath.
“Jump into the hole, Summer.”
She did, without any hesitation. After all, she had no idea what she was doing.
I, feeling very stupid, said, “Well, here it goes,” and followed her.
Landing lightly onto a puffy pink cloud, I looked around. A crystal clear pool lay just ahead, a sparkling waterfall pouring into it. Summer was standing dazedly next to me. A faerie Kougra lay, curled up, a few feet ahead. It seemed to be asleep. I approached it cautiously.
“Err... hello?” I poked it. “Hellooo?”
It awoke with a start. “Whoa! Hi there! I’m Lacey! Welcome to the Pool of Wishes! Sorry about being asleep; it gets pretty boring down here. Maybe one visitor every year or so... anyways, which one of you wants your dreams to come true?”
“Umm, I want...” I stopped mid-sentence. Here I was, inside a cloud, talking to a faerie Kougra, who was offering to grant all my wishes. MY wish was to be painted Spotted. But if I wished for that, Summer would be stuck like this her whole life. As much as she was annoying at times (okay, annoying all the time), she was my sister. That Spotted paint brush will just have to wait. I stood up a little straighter. “I want my sister, Summer –“ I pointed –“To be taken out of her spell. For her to go back to—“ I gulped, knowing I’d probably regret these words in a few minutes –“normal.”
“All righty,” Lacey said brightly, getting to her feet. “Just guide her to the pool, then.”
“Summer, get into the pool,” I instructed her.
She did so.
“Okay, here it goes!” Lacey was standing by a statue of a Water faerie, which stood at the head of the waterfall. “Faerie of the Ocean, unlock these secret dreams,” she whispered to it.
For a moment, I thought this was very silly. The statue can’t hear! Then, rainbow colored sparkles floated from the sky (I mean, the top of the cloud, we seemed to be under Faerieland), covering the pool and Summer in a blanket of sparkles.
I watched anxiously, wondering if this was all a dream. Suddenly, all the sparkles disappeared, and Summer, very wet, was climbing out of the pool.
“Eurgh! Icecreamy, why am I all wet? You pushed me in, didn’t you? That is SO mean!” She marched up to me, frowning. Yup, SummerSunLover was most definitely back. “Wait, where ARE we? This is so, so cool! It’s like a secret world!” She looked around in wonder.
I don’t know what came over me, but the next thing I knew, I was hugging Summer tightly.
“Icecreamy, get off! I can’t breathe! What’s up with you? GET OFF!”
I let go. “Oh, Summer, you have no idea how good it is to see you like this again!” I said happily.
“Again? What do you mean? Is this all a joke? Wait, I thought I was in a creepy house! What happened?”
I told her.
“Icecreamy, that’s simply ridiculous! It makes no sense! Yeah, sure, I was in a trance, and you have a million neopoints in your hands! Uh-huh, that’s how it went, all right!”
I sighed. Some things never change.
*hugs everyone* Thanks for reading! Comments welcome!