Halloween was only a couple of days away and my good friend Lukitar was going to have a Halloween party, like she did every year. As always, everyone was supposed to be dressed as something scary or spooky. The problem was that I had absolutely no idea what I was going to be! Last year I had simply worn a white blanket. Everyone else had put so much effort on their costumes that it made me feel ashamed. I didn't want the same thing to happen this year so I was going to dress up as something really scary, if I could only figure out what...
Unfortunately, it wasn't my only problem. I had also promised to buy some spooky food for the party and I really disliked visiting Haunted Woods. No matter how many times I went there, I always felt a bit uneasy. But a promise is a promise so I just had to face my fears.
I was on my way to Haunted Woods when I heard a weird noise from the woods surrounding me. At first I ignored it and kept walking towards my destination. But the noise rose in volume and it started to sound quite desperate too. I was never the one to overlook such a sound, so I turned around and took a couple of steps towards the trees. Right before I stepped into the forest, I thought that it wasn't such a good idea after all. But then I heard the noise again, so I took a deep breath and started walking towards its source.
After just a couple of minutes of walking a strange fog surrounded me. It was so thick that I could hardly see anything. I even walked right into a tree once or twice. It was also unbelievably cold and I started shivering. I could still hear the voice though, so I kept walking.
After a while, the fog suddenly faded away and I came to a clearing. Before I entered it, I tried to listen to the voice again, but I couldn't hear anything. But as soon as I stepped into the clearing, I could feel someone's eyes on me. I looked around, but I couldn't see anything else than trees. The whole situation was making me really nervous and scared. That's it, I thought, time to go back! I started running as fast as I could even if I had no idea where I was going.
For a while I couldn't hear anything other than my own breathing and the pounding of my paws. But then I heard the most horrible sound I had ever heard. Someone's hurried steps right behind me. I tried to run faster, but I was getting tired and it seemed like the trees were alive and trying to trip me. Soon I stumbled and fell to the ground. The steps got closer and then stopped behind me. I was just lifting my head to see who it was when I heard soft chanting. Suddenly I felt very sleepy and a moment later I was fast asleep.
I woke up in a strange room some time later. I had no idea where I was or how long I had been asleep. The room was quite small and had no windows, just one wooden door. I tried to open it but it was locked. I looked around once more, but there was absolutely nothing, just a couple of torches on the wall lighting the small room up. I sighed quietly and sat down again. "Nothing else to do but wait," I whispered softly to myself and tried to get comfortable on the cold hard floor.
And wait I did. For hours I sat there waiting for someone or something, but nothing happened. Eventually I grew tired of waiting and fell asleep once more.
The next time I woke up, I could hear voices in the room. I didn't open my eyes and just listened to them. There were at least two neopets in the room and they were talking about me.
"So what did he say? What are we going to do with him?"
"I told you already! He didn't say anything, just told me to go away. He was busy."
I didn't dare to open my eyes as they continued bickering. But I did take a careful peek. There were two neopets in the room, just like I had assumed. The other was a Skeith and the other was a Mynci. There was something wrong with them, though: they were both purple and had wings! What bizarre magic was going on here? I didn't have time to think any further as I heard steps coming closer to the door. Seconds later it opened and I saw a pair of legs step in before I closed my eyes again.
"What are we to do with him when he wakes up, my lord?" one of the guards, probably the Skeith, asked.
A long silence followed and then a voice answered: "He is already awake." I opened my eyes slowly and looked up to a mean looking Grarrl's face. "Follow me," the Grarrl simply said and walked out of the door.
I quickly scampered to my feet and ran after him. We walked along a long corridor and past many doors. It looked like I had been brought into a castle of some kind. I had many questions in my mind, but as the Grarrl didn't seem to be in the mood for talking, I didn't say anything and so we walked in silence. After a while he stopped in front of a door, opened it and ushered me in.
This room was bigger than the previous one and had shelves covering the walls. As I stood there looking around, he entered the room and walked to one of the shelves. "My lord was very generous and let me have a couple of these. He said he had too many," the Grarrl said cheerfully as he searched the shelves for something. I fervently hoped he wasn't talking about Ghostkerbombs or Ray Guns or Supper Attack Peas or...
Finally he seemed to find what he was looking for and with a delighted cry he took it and turned around to face me. I felt my jaw drop when I saw what he was holding in his hand. A paint brush? What was he going to do with a paint brush? He smiled at me smugly and explained: "This is a Darigan Paint Brush; I want to see what it does to Lupes."
Darigan? Had they dragged me all the way to the Darigan Citadel? It would explain the appearance of the guards though. I had of course heard about the evil Darigan pets but I had never actually seen one. My thoughts were interrupted as he stepped closer and waved the paint brush over me. At first I didn't feel anything but then I started tingling all over and felt something growing from my back.
The transformation didn't last for long, though, and in a matter of seconds I felt normal again. Or a bit different, to be exact. By the look of my paws, my fur was now purple and I could feel wings on my back. I looked up to see the Grarrl watching me happily. "Why me?" I asked after a while as he just stood there watching me.
"Oh, no reason really. I just happened to see you and thought you could use a new look."
I stared at him for a long time. I just couldn't comprehend anything. They had kidnapped me because I needed a new look? Seriously? "Can I go now then?" I asked hopefully.
"Yes, of course, you're free to go. I'll escort you outside and then you can try your new wings."
I just nodded numbly and followed him through the corridors. It didn't take us long to get outside and the fresh air felt wonderful on my face. The sun was already setting so Lukitar's party was probably going to start in an hour or so.
"Have a spooky Halloween!" the Grarrl then said and walked back into the castle. I watched him go and just stood there for a while, completely dumbfounded by the whole experience. Well then, I thought after a while, guess I'll have some flying to do. Then I jumped into the air and spread my wings. Flying felt a bit awkward at first but I got the hang of it quite quickly. Who would have thought that flying could be so much fun?
In no time at all I was at Lukitar's house. The party was just about to be started when I landed on the backyard. Needless to say, everyone was very impressed by my costume. Actually, they were all so amazed by it that nobody remembered the spooky food I was supposed to bring. Phew! It seemed like from now on I would never have to worry about my Halloween costume anymore! Though I guess there must also be some easier ways to find a costume...