A Cracked Bottle of Sand
Everything holds beauty,
Everything is special;
Don’t pass everyday objects by,
Not realising their potential.
I sat there, watching the others get picked up and chosen for their pretty colors. Sure, they were blue, green, red, purple, orange... even rainbow; they were beautiful. No one would want to pick a plain old thing like me. No one cared for what I once held, or what I used to be.
The sun was high over Neopia Central; and it was a bright, clear, warm day. The hustle and bustle of the Neopian Bazaar vibrated my shelf and sent tingles through my shattered edges. Maybe someone would notice me today. A yellow Gelert, a bit on the small side, walked up to the Sand Stand. He eyed over the lower shelves first where the simple sands were and turned to face his owner after noticing the lack of Yellow Sand.
“Why isn’t there Yellow Sand?” He tilted his head to the side, tossing his ears playfully in the air behind him. His owner had her hands on her hips as she looked at the shelf that was diagonally down and left of me.
“I don’t know, Gell. Maybe there will be some day. Why don’t you have a look at this pretty Orange Sand? It’s not quite yellow, but it's real close.” The owner used her left hand to turn her pet’s head; and her right hand to point at the Bottle of Orange Sand. It made me sick how the Orange Sand could just sit there so proudly with its bottle reflecting the big glow from above and gleaming, showing its bright contents. If I had its sand, they would be looking at me, not it!
“That’s neat! I like it loads!” Gell jumped up and down excitedly, his paws drumming on the ground with the impact of each leap. His owner picked up the Bottle of Orange Sand and handed ten neopoints to the shop keeper. The Techo took the points and nodded thanks to the owner. Every day was like this it seemed. No one wanted the Cracked Bottle of Sand, and I was always left to sit and watch the day pass by. The bottom shelf always ran out of stock. Newbie sand collectors were always proud when they left carrying their purchases.
The Techo shopkeeper closed his Sand Stand for the day and wheeled it out of the Bazaar over towards the marketplace, where he would stop at the soup kitchen. We passed the Chocolate Factory and the most bizarre thought came to my cork mind... If we bottles even have minds that rest in our cork, that is... What if I got filled with chocolate? Everyone would like me then! If I could shuffle to the edge of the stand when we go over a small bump in the path...
BUMP! I toppled off the side of the Sand Stand, free at last from the cart. Now to roll over to the factory before the shopkeeper picks me back up again! I used the momentum of my fall to start rolling towards the factory. The Techo hasn’t spotted me yet. I rolled over to the grass and stopped at the edge. The Techo still hasn’t noticed me! I tried making cracking and tinkling sounds with my loose glass shards. He can’t hear me! The Techo kept pushing his Sand Stand, without me. He had wheeled as far as Usuki Land and he didn’t even notice I had fallen off! Maybe he did notice and didn’t care... Maybe he knew he could never sell me and so he left me to roll around on the streets... How I wish I never fell off that stand!
I lay there against the grass, wishing someone would come and find me. The sun had disappeared long ago and night was well set in. Not many Neopets came out at this time of the night. I was alone. The breeze whispered faint words, none that would sooth my restless thoughts. I heard a beating sound, like wings in the air. A Faerie landed on the ground next to me. Her long yellow dress brightened up the whole area surrounding her, myself included. Her bright golden hair swished behind her in the wind. A small sparkle glowed from somewhere nearby. No, wait. That’s me! Her light is reflecting off me!
The Faerie saw me, knelt down and picked me up in a single elegant motion. She cradled me, shards and all, in her soft gentle hands. I don’t know why she wanted me, but she did. The Light Faerie turned upwards towards the sky and carried me up. Was she taking me to Bottle Heaven? It sure felt like it! We turned towards Faerieland - it was probably her home. The wind rushed past us caressed my smooth surface. She didn’t drop me, not a single shard.
As we approached the large cloud, smaller clouds floated past us like giant marshmallows drifting around in the sky. The healing springs were directly below us. Then we passed the Faerie Petpets store, but we weren’t going there either, so we kept flying. I wondered where we were going. She landed at the entry to the main part of the city and walked straight ahead, towards the castle. We were going to the castle? I started getting excited and then another thought hit me. What is she going to do with me? If no pets want me, or owners for that matter, why should a Faerie want me? We walked, or more so, she walked us up the steps of the Castle. The guards let her in through the gate, and then she walked up even more steps to the main entry door.
After passing through so many corridors that my cork hurt, she finally stopped in one room and set me down on a desk in front of a chair that she sat in. She picked up my shards and set them in a pile close to herself and began arranging them like a jigsaw puzzle until they made one shape. A glow started to emit from her palm. Was she holding some kind of little flashlight or was it a Lemon Snow Puff? She pressed the Snow Puff looking thing onto the glass. Instantly, my shards all melded together into a smooth round surface. She picked up my repaired glass and placed it over the hole then repeated the melding process. I felt like a whole Bottle again!
The Faerie walked over to a shelf and grabbed something off it before swiftly making her way back to me. She carried a small decorated yellow box that made no sound as she set it on the table. Did she make it, the box, that is? It was beautiful! She gently took off the lid and grabbed a handful of its contents. She removed my cork and began to pour what she held, inside me. I saw nothing but felt something, I knew it was there. After she filled me with this invisible stuff and replaced my cork, she placed the lid on her box and returned it to its shelf. She came back to me and did that Snow Puff thing again, as she held me in both of her hands. Whatever it was inside me, it glowed. I felt warm and loved. The invisible substance inside me sparkled like the stars or golden glitter. I held the Sands of the Light Faerie.
I felt pure happiness and joy right then. I had sand in me once again. If I had arms, I would hug her. She took me to the room’s window. I never realised how high up we were! She had a stand up by the hole in the wall. It was made of shining gold that shone like the sun as it rose in the morning. And it just so happened, the sun was rising at that very moment. Its radiant beams shone upon the castle; its light crawling up the sides and draping its walls in a warm purple, like the color of Queen Fyora’s dress.
The Light Faerie set me down on the golden shelf; my contents were invisible now since she had turned off the Snow Puff... Can you even turn Snow Puffs off? The light slipped over the bottom of the window, engulfing the bottom part of the shelf. The gold on the shelf bellow bounced the light around like mirrors, and decorated the room with patterns of light that flickered about randomly. The beams travelled upwards and hit me. My contents glowed a golden yellow again, and the whole room behind me sparkled with patches of gold. I’d never seen anything like it, nor had I thought that I could do anything like that. The Faerie smiled at me, her face beaming, joining the light that surrounded us. No darkness, be them Faeries or sad thoughts, could enter here. I was happy and I needed nothing more, just to sit in that window and reflect the light that was given to me each day for those who knew where to look, to see.
The Faerie grabbed a bottle of Rainbow Sand from her shelf. I knew why; The Techo would eventually know I was missing and be looking for me to try and sell again. Since I was with the Faerie, he needed something to compensate. The Faerie walked out the door. Through the window, I watched her fly back to Neopia Central. Although I was alone in the room, I knew she would return to me. I watched the sun rise and the city fill up. Neopets played cheerfully in the clouds with their owners and also with their petpets, enjoying the day that was light for them, and for me.
The Techo was on his hands and feet looking behind every bush and over every stone. The Cracked Bottle of Sand wasn’t anywhere to be seen. It couldn’t just disappear; maybe the Wandering Ghosts took it in the night when it fell off my stand... He raised his head and placed his clenched hands on his sides. The Bazaar wasn’t that busy yet so he didn’t need to open for another couple of minutes. The early rising owners and pets were out doing their dailies, buying their breakfast and enjoying the morning.
A small glimmer from the side of the road caught his eye; he rushed over to it. A bottle of Rainbow Sand rested in the crook between the path and the grass, not too far from the Chocolate Factory. He picked it up and eyed it. There was a note next to where it had lain. He picked up the paper and read it, “I will take care of it.” The note was signed by the Light Faerie.
The Techo looked up to the sky and saw a single Light Faerie flying back towards Faerieland. He smiled and took the bottle of Rainbow Sand back to his cart and put it on a shelf that had his things that were not for sale... the top right shelf, where his own collection of Cracked Bottles of Sand were. His bottle was in good hands. He figured out what happened and knew that it would be taken care of. And now, the Sands of the Light Faerie were where they belonged, safely kept in the once Cracked Bottle.