“I’VE HAD IT!”
Rido, the blue Grundo, cringed—managing to duck before Dr. Sloth’s arm could connect with his head. It was Thursday, signaling the weekly meeting in which his master was required to display his wicked plan towards destroying Neopia. All was going well, until the mentioning of using a certain baby Bruce with a ray came into the picture.
And then Rido had to open his big fat mouth.
“Uh, sir?” He gulped, still not accustomed to his master’s horrifying glare. “Boochi won’t be returning until next week. He mentioned a cruise along Krawk Island last I remem—”
“Are you questioning my knowledge?” Dr. Sloth interrupted calmly, raising a brow. “If I request Boochi to be here, he will be here.”
“But s—sir,” Rido stammered. “He even sent in a note—”
Dr. Sloth narrowed his eyes, and Rido could swear he saw them flash crimson.
“You think this is easy?” he began, voice rising along with his apparent anger. “You and your little Grundo companions think it’s so wonderful and easy being Dr. Frank Sloth! Do you think the responsibilities that come with this coat are a walk in the park?! No! I’m constantly slaving away in my office and this is the thanks I get?! For my minions to antagonize and question my authority?!”
Dr. Sloth wrinkled his nose in disgust, unzipping his polished coat and hurled it at the poor Grundo. Rido hastily made a move to remove the jacket from his face, clearing his vision, only to catch his master walking off towards the nearest exit of the station.
“You’re in charge now, good for nothing follower!” His loud voice echoed throughout the hallway, followed by the slamming of the door that shook the whole building.
Rido groaned in despair.
* * *
“And that’s what happened,” Rido explained, earning a blank look from the rest of his subordinates.
A small hand raised in the back, the owner’s face hidden behind a rather large purple Grundo in front.
“Uh, yes,” Rido pointed, still uncomfortable with the situation. “You have a question?”
“Does this mean you’re our new master now? With former mast—”
The audience broke into a flurry of chatter, raising the noise level and drowning out the little Grundo’s voice. With the help of a green Grundo to the far left, who shouted everyone to “SHUT UP”, the conversations eventually ended until it was silent once more.
“Thank you... uh, friend.” Rido scratched the back of his head sheepishly. “Well, I suppose so. But first things first, we need to get started on—”
Before he could finish, the crowd broke into applause and cheers.
This is not good.
* * *
“With current situations, we have to let go of some of our most loyal followers,” Ailey explained, the station’s trusted strategist. She adjusted the glasses on her nose, closing the magnetic pointer in her hands. “Your call, Rid—New Master.”
“You see, I think we should just wait until Dr. Sloth gets back,” the blue Grundo suggested, shifting uncomfortably in his seat. With the urging of Dr. Sloth’s assistant, he was currently wearing the sleek black coat along with rolled up construction paper glued to his head—imitating his master’s... hair.
Or what they thought was his hair, anyway.
Ailey opened her mouth to retort, but decided against it and clamped it shut.
“Any news on plan C, Bob?” Rido asked, turning his head towards a frightened looking red Grundo.
The poor thing was shaking.
“Rido-New-Master-Sir?” Bob whispered, holding a hand over the receiver of the phone, looking to be on the brink of tears. “Dr. Sloth says to leave him alone and that he’s trying to get a tan. He also said that if you want him to return so badly, you should beg and grovel on your knees.”
“Great, at least we made some progress.”
* * *
“New Master? Jhudora has requested to meet with you.”
“If you have any consideration towards my life, can you please tell her that I’m out having a diplomatic meeting... or something?”
“But sir! She’s—!”
“Who, may I ask, is out on a diplomatic meeting?”
Note to self: More bars on the door... or maybe just an evil faerie resistant barrier.
* * *
“I THOUGHT I TOLD YOU TO LOCK THE DOORS!”
“But New Master! He gave me cookies!”
“IS THE RELEASE OF A DANGEROUS CRIMINAL WORTH ONE MEASLY COOKIE, DAVE?”
“I’m sorry for yelling, Dave. Can you please call the Grundo reinforcements and tell them that the Meepit Leader escaped?”
* * *
“Well, isn’t this just lovely, Fyora?”
Rido was currently attending the monthly Faerie Tea Party located in Faerieland, dressed up as the infamous Sloth Faerie aka Susan. The cardboard wings on his back were giving him a rather painful ache, and he was positive that this eye mask on his face hadn’t been washed for years.
He sniffed the dress, regretting it instantly.
Was that cheese?
“Susan, are you alright?” Rido glanced up, noticing the gazes of all the faeries on him, clearly worried. “You’ve been grimacing for the past ten minutes.”
“I believe it’s Jhuidah’s homemade finger sandwiches,” sniffed the Soup Faerie, handing the Grundo a glass of water. “I told you we should have assigned the Fountain Faerie with that job.”
“Just because you didn’t get to host this month’s par—”
“Girls, girls. This is no time to fight,” Fyora said calmly with a smile. “Now, more tea?”
* * *
Day—Oh, forget it.
Rido was absolutely miserable, that much was obvious.
It had been a little over a month since Dr. Sloth had all but given the title of Evil Threat to the blue Grundo, leaving all his responsibilities behind for a much needed vacation to Mystery Island. It was ridiculous, the things he had to do!
What kind of evil threat to Neopia would attend a monthly tea party?!
As he sat in the swiveling chair of doom, seething with anger, the door to the office suddenly opened—revealing Dr. Sloth in all his Mystery Island glory. It wasn’t the fact that his master had shown up after he endured a long torturous day of playing hide-and-seek with the stupid faeries; it was the fact that his master was practically drenched in the scent of strawberries and nature.
And he had a beautiful tan.
Rido was furious
“Ah, Rido! I see you’ve managed to get everything under control while I was gone,” Dr. Sloth commented, scanning the perfectly organized room and taking a sip of his coconut drink. “What an improvement! You’ve even had a bulletin board made! Schedules will be easier to manage...”
As if noticing the Grundo for the first time, Dr. Sloth raised a brow, removing the sunglasses and situating it on his head. “What?”
“You...” Rido began, his anger preventing him from forming a coherent sentence. “You—YOU... YOU TRULY ARE EVIL! What kind of menace would be capable of such... atrocities? FAERIES, MEEPITS, PRISONERS... BRIBING WITH COOKIES?!”
Dr. Sloth watched as the little Grundo threw a tantrum, cursing Fyora and every living being under the sun. Hm, he’d have to get the Grundo training checked... those words were just a tad too impolite. His train of thought was broken as Rido calmed down, managing to compose himself once more and cleared his throat.
“Welcome back, sir,” Rido greeted, folding his hands together. “Now if you’ll excuse me... I have some things to attend to. Oh, and you’ve been chosen to host the next tea party. Fyora made sure to mention that the theme is flowers, not the rainbow that you all voted on a few months ago. Good day, sir.”
How Sloth managed to receive such a terrifying reputation? Perhaps we’ll never know.