The Adventures of Daine - Copier v3.0
"And we're off like a herd of Turdles!" Daine declared as she and Amita skipped down Bracknell Road. The Halloween Ixi and her Blue Shoyru friend both donned backpacks as they pranced along the sidewalk, their petpets riding happily on their heads.
Amita turned to look at Daine, laughing a bit as her Psimouse's parasol tickled her nose. "Your mommy and my mommy said we could go to the Space Station, right?"
As for Daine's petpet, the Snowbunny napped peacefully on its owner's head. "Well duh, Ami. They're coming too, you know."
Amita looked back to find the two girls running after their speedy pets, and giggled. "This is gonna be so much fun! What're we gonna do, hm?"
Daine shrugged. "Go shopping, walk around, check out the latest junks. Stuffs like that."
TaipeiSS and Skitterbug987 finally caught up to the excited young ones, panting as they did.
"Slow down there, hoppy little Vespas. You can't get up to the Station without us." Taipei stopped them so that she could catch her breath.
Amita turned to Skitterbug. "Mommy, where's Tru and Thayet?" The two Pets' older sisters weren't joining the space-bound expedition that day.
Daine answered the question first, even if her words were a bit wrong. "They're at the libamarry, Ami."
"Oooh!" Amita nodded, though unsure exactly what a "libamarry" was.
Yet again, the small party was off. They skipped down the quiet roads, taking in the sounds of the morning: birds twittered, breezes rattled through trees, and Amita and Daine chattered loudly. They soon came to High Street, where the sounds of commerce pierced the quiet morning. People and pets alike scurried every which way to take part in shopping and browsing through the various stores. Daine skipped towards a small booth and stood in line. A sign over the booth said "Virtupets Station Transport."
"Daine, how does this work?" Amita watched the sole Grundo in the kiosk with big, curious eyes.
"Easy peasy," Daine assured her. "Our Grundo homie in there uses these weirdo powers to psychically zap us onto the Space Station. Watch!"
Amita turned and watched as the Orange Grundo closed his eyes and placed the tips of his fingers together. The Uni that waited before him suddenly de-materialized in a glimmer of silver light. The Grundo opened his eyes and, seeing that his customer had gone, slapped the bell in front of him.
Daine hopped happily up to the counter, Amita hiding behind her. Taipei and Skitterbug stood beside the little pair.
"'Allo dere," the Grundo greeted cheerfully. "Where'd you like ta go?"
"The Spacey Station!" Daine cheered happily. The Grundo looked up to Taipei, who nodded. He grinned.
"Here we go!" The Grundo rubbed his hands together, closed his eyes, and touched his fingertips together as he hummed softly. Daine felt herself become lighter and lighter, flying through space like a bubble before she re-materialized in the Space Station. Amita stood next to her, eyes wide.
"That wasn't so bad now, was it, Ams?" The Shoyru looked thoroughly spooked.
"That... was... SO MUCH FUN! LET'S DO IT AGAIN!"
Skitterbug, who was now behind them with Taipei, laughed. "Later, Amita. Okay, you two have fun! Meet us back here when the intercom chimes three times, okay?"
"Be good," Taipei said with a wink to Daine. The Ixi stuck her tongue out, then grabbed Amita's hand and pulled her down a corridor.
"Let's go esasplore, Ams!"
Daine brought Amita down to the food court to see the bizarre foods that were sold there. People who sat there and ate also watched big screens, which were now showing two little Grundos bopping each other over the head with copies of Neopian Times Issue 3. The Shoyru's and Ixi's eyes brightened as they looked at each other with shared mischievousness, but they both shook their heads in the silent agreement that much more entertaining activities were to be done on the large space station. Their aimless skipping and prancing finally led them to Grundos Cafe.
"Hey! Hey you! Hey, hey you! C'mere! Hey you! Question!" Daine shouted annoyingly at the large Grundo serving the customers. The Grundo turned, looking tired, overworked, and harassed. And rightfully so, as he now regarded the table with the two young Neopets yelling and waving and making various assortments of faces in an attempt to get his attention.
"Yes? How can I help you?" he inquired with a sigh as he cautiously approached the table. The answer, however, seemed to be a barrage of questions and comments that the Shoyru and Ixi took turns in slinging.
"How come so much stuff is made of rocks?"
"Who eats rocks?"
"And who eats metal?"
"I hate metal."
"How come that stuff floats?"
"How does floating work?"
"Do you have any floating rocks?"
"I don't want to eat anything that floats."
"How do you put cake in a tube?"
"That sounds gross."
The Grundo stared with his mouth slightly ajar until he realized that Daine and Amita had stopped talking and were now staring at him, waiting.
"Oh, is it my turn now?" he asked with yet another sigh.
"Yesp," the Ixi replied. Why there was a "p" at the end of her word, the Grundo didn't know but resigned not to ask for fear of another barrage.
"Okay. So I know what you don't want. Why don't you try telling me now what you do want?"
"Beef Rouladen," Amita answered.
"We'll share," Daine added.
"Wait, you both knew what you wanted this whole time?" the Grundo asked in exasperation.
"Yeah, why?" was the Ixi's reply. The Grundo decided not to answer. He just shook his head and disappeared into the kitchen.
Thirty minutes later, Daine and Amita were bounding out of the cafe and down the maze-like assortment of corridors that adorned the massive ship. One turn led to another, and one set of stairs yet another. Of course, whilst most Neopians would become frightened and attempt to find their way back, the pair was much more inclined to continue with mounting excitement of what they might find. It became exactly like a game of hide and seek, with both of them as "it" and the potential for fun hiding in each and every door they passed. They would jump at a door, giggle as it hissed open automatically, then scream and yell unintelligible sounds until they realized that nothing waited on the other side. Meeting rooms, storage rooms, and empty closets, but nothing bizarre like they expected to see.
Until a door finally hissed open to reveal a large machine with glowing lights and buttons.
Most technology in Neopia was confined to the Space Station, and anything advanced that existed elsewhere was usually imported from the aforementioned station. Seeing something so fancy, therefore, was extremely exciting for the pair of young Neopians.
"What's a 'Copier v3.0?'" Daine asked Amita as she read the name off of the side of the machine.
"It's a 'your mom,'" Amita replied before giggling. "I have no idea. It looks like an upgrade from the 2.0. See the pictures on the wall?" Amita motioned to the picture of a small, hand held box with a shining bulb and a red button. The picture was labeled "Copier v2.0," just as the one next to it was labeled "Copier v1.0," which looked identical save for the lack of metallic finish.
"Let's play with it!" Daine exclaimed.
Examining the machine revealed a lifting compartment with glass beneath it. Amita went airborne, fluttering her wings until she was above the machine, then landed onto the glass. A button lit up in glowing green and emitted a soft "bong" sound as she did.
"Oooooh," the two exhaled in curiosity and amazement.
"Push it! Push it push it!" Amita declared.
And push it Daine did. Her shiny black hoof landed squarely on the button and the machine erupted in whirrs, sending a green light across the glass and, subsequently, shining across Amita's feet.
The two screamed. Amita shot off of the copier, barreling into Daine and knocking both of them to the floor. They continued to scream, eyes wide and bulging, as they hastily untangled themselves and ran around the room with arms in the air. The commotion would have surely brought someone else into the room, but, as it is impossible to hear someone scream in space, nobody came to investigate. The two were left alone until they realized that the copier had long stopped making sounds or new lights and was now sitting in the same state they had found it in, save for a sheet of paper that lay in a tray jutting from the copier's side. The pair slowly and cautiously edged up to the machine. Amita quickly snatched the paper from the tray.
"It's a picture of the bottom of my feet!" Amita exclaimed. The two howled in amusement and proceeded to make enough pictures of their faces to make a good-sized pile of papers in the middle of the room. They spent a good hour diving in the papers, tossing them at each other, and throwing them up in the air so they could pretend it was snowing. Amita's Psimouse joined in on the paper pile festivities.
Daine's Snowbunny, however, decided on a little exploration of its own. Like the Psimouse, having napped in a backpack until the moment when the pets screamed left Miette the Snowbunny antsy and curious. It hopped across the room to the copier and began stomping on the various buttons and sniffing at the levers. A new glowing green light appeared in a small pool emitting out of the side of the copier and onto a small platform. Miette, of course, went to investigate. She wobbled a bit as she hopped toward the platform, stepping on a button that said "1" along the way. Then was a hop to "0." Miette realized at this point that the platform was a little further than she could usually hop, so she took a few energizing bounces on the button where she was before springing into the soft green light.
The copier shuddered and the lights flickered. The pets stopped dead in their paper-flinging tracks and stared wide-eyed at the machine. A low rumbling sent Miette scrambling towards the backpack she can slipped out of. A softly echoing POP sounded as a small, white, fluffy Snowbunny entered into existence on the far side of the machine. And another. And another.
Amazement soon turned to fear as Daine and Amita watched tens, and then hundreds, of Snowbunnies pop into existence by way of the copier. Daine ran to the machine and started hitting random buttons with her hooves as Amita ran through the room screaming.
"HELP! HELP! HELP!"
But, alas, there was that rule about screaming in space. The Snowbunnies began to fill the room, all hopping and sniffing in curiosity. Their curiosity, like Miette's, led some of them to the number buttons and that glowing pool of green light that had begun the multiplication. The fear was now panic, and Daine and Miette fled out of the hissing doors just before they would have been pushed out by the growing mound of fluffy white. Snowbunnies spilled mercilessly into the corridor behind them. Daine's ridiculous sense of direction took them up many floors and around many corners before finding them at the exact location they were to meet their owners with ten minutes to spare.
The girls found the Ixi and Shoyru sitting stock still with their eyes wide open and faces frozen.
"So, did you two have fun?" asked Skitterbug.
Daine answered with a "NOTHING!!" at the exact moment that Amita voiced a "BAAAGLAAAAHHH!" Both immediately returned to their statue-like demeanors.
"Did you... spend a lot of Neopoints?" Taipei inquired suspiciously. Both pets shook their heads furiously.
The girls should have known better. With Daine and Amita being who they were and now acting how they were, a full on investigation should have been conducted. The girls, however, were ready to go home and, knowing the pets had not spent their life savings, they were content with the answer they had sort of been given. They headed to the Grundo who would transport them back to Neopia as urgent sounding announcements began to chime over the intercom.
And when the Neopian Times informed the world three days later that the price of Snowbunnies had dropped to three Neopoints, Daine and Amita began to whistle in a very random and, counter to their attempts, very conspicuous way.