The Adventures of a P3
Mootie carefully placed the newest harvest of grass on his back and, careful not to lose a single stalk, ran for the small door of the storage building. Inside, heaps of mud, sticks, pebbles, pollen, and grass lined the walls. Mootie carefully lay his own bundle on top of the others and bounded back outside for more, avoiding a pinchit with a stone almost as big as he was.
Outside, a light breeze blew, stirring the antennae of the nesting petpetpets nearby. A small group of larnikins collected pollen nearby, and some soldier pinchits emerged from the barracks.
Mootie waved to his brother, Cootie, who was collecting mud nearby.
As Mootie began to snip once more at the tall stalks of grass, there was a sudden commotion nearby as a few soldiers rushed by, nearly knocking down a nester mootix.
“What's going on?” Mootie asked, twitching his antennae nervously.
“Probably another of those annoying blue pests,” a larnikin muttered angrily. “That's the third today.”
“I wish I could help,” Mootie sighed.
“Well, you can't,” Fiara said, seeming to appear out of thin air. Fiara was Mootie's faerie-painted sister, and a nester who hadn't done a day's work in her life. “You, little brother, are a worker, not a soldier.”
“I know, I know,” Mootie grumbled, tearing up another stalk of grass.
“You're doing it all wrong!” Fiara said angrily. “You can't just tear it up like that! You have to sort of gently pry it out of the ground. That will help you get more.”
“Yeah, like you'd know,” Mootie said, just loud enough for her to hear. Fiara stalked away, snout in the air.
“Pay no attention to her,” Cootie said, passing by with a lump of mud that would occasionally splatter on his head. “She's a stuck up brat, in my opinion. She's a nester that isn't old enough to nest, so she basically lies around doing nothing all day.”
“No kidding,” Mootie said. “I can't wait until she is old enough to nest, though. Then at least she'll be stuck sitting on a hard, round thing all day, and she can't bother us.”
“Hmm,” Cootie said, obviously thinking hard. “Maybe all nesters are like that until they lay their first egg. After all, kids are a lot of work, so maybe it sort of calms them down.”
“Remember when we were kids, Cootie?” Mootie asked, yanking another stalk of grass out of the ground and using it to tie the bundle together. “We would bother the soldiers to no end?”
“You still bother the soldiers to no end, Moot,” Cootie pointed out as Mootie began to follow him to the storage building.
“What do you mean?” Mootie's eyes widened.
“I've seen you,” Cootie chided. “You watch them all day. Sometimes you drop what you're doing to watch them during a raid.”
“So, I think you want to be a soldier.” Cootie looked at him, as if daring him to disagree.
“No way!” Mootie lied. “I'm a worker. What's what I was chosen to be the day I was hatched. You know that.”
Cootie sighed as he entered the storage building and placed his mud in the pile. “Whatever. Just... just watch out, okay? I'd much rather have a brother than a jewel.”
“I'm not going to.... you know... do that for a long time,” Mootie protested.
“You'll end up doing it a lot earlier than you think if you keep messing around with th-” Suddenly, the mootix was interrupted as a loud voice proclaimed; “A resource tile has been damaged! All workers to Puddle Lake immediately.”
“Let's go,” Mootie said, hurrying out the door.
Later that day, Cootie, Mootie, and Fiara were curled up in their yellow-painted home, getting some much-needed rest.
“Mootie,” Cootie whispered.
“Are you awake?”
“We didn't finish our conversation earlier.” Cootie sat up in his bed.
“What's to finish?” Mootie asked rubbing sleep from his eyes.
“I'm worried about you, following the soldiers when you aren't supposed too.”
“Well, stop worrying,” Mootie said. He curled up and promptly fell asleep once more, leaving his brother feeling very alone.
“Red alert!” shouted a soldier as Mootie collected pollen nearby. “We have three pests on the northern side of the nesting site! Let's go!”
Mootie's antennae perked up. “Wow,” he said to himself. “This I gotta see.” Knowing that Cootie would drag him back to work if he saw, he made sure that his brother was distracted before sneaking away.
As he followed the soldiers (mostly pinchits and larnikins, seeing as mootix weren't cut out, in size or stature, for fighting), he spotted several scared nesters, a few holding eggs, running in the opposite direction. Mootie tried to look casual, as if he was supposed to be there, as they reached the nesting site. A few of the soldiers began shoving the last nesters to safety as the rest of them began to attack two of the pests.
Mootie hid behind a particularly large nest to watch. “Awesome,” he thought. “just awesome. Look at how they corral them. That's so cool!”
An odd panting noise behind him shocked him out of his stupor. Turning around, he discovered a hulking blue pest, which hissed in his face angrily. Its breath made Mootie gag, and he tried to step backward, but tripped over a nest. The huge, red mouth loomed closer, sharp teeth and claws ready to rip apart a little mootix.
Nearby, Cootie carefully caught a few stray flecks of pollen out of the air, but several more escaped him.
“Rats,” he thought. “Mootie was always better at catching pollen than me.” He turned around. “Hey, Mootie!” he called. Oddly, he couldn't see his brother anywhere in the entire harvesting area.
“That's odd,” he thought. “There's no way he could have collected enough to store yet.” Just then, a few soldiers hurried out of the barracks.
“The others will need backup in the nesting area,” a pinchit said. “fighting three pests at once.” As they disappeared, Cootie rubbed his forehead angrily.
“Great.” Cootie began to pace. “Mootie's probably gone after the soldiers again. I'd better go after him as soon as I store my pollen.” Careful not to drop any of the precious specks, Cootie carried his small bundle into the storage room. “Now.” He stretched. “I'd better go find Mootie at the nesting area before the soldiers notice him.” Scurrying off, he passed the hospital and a few tiny houses before he began to hear the shouts of angry petpetpets.
“Mootie?” he called. No answer. “Come on out, I know you're here.” Rounding a few sproutlings, he saw the battle in full for the first time. He counted two pests, and four soldiers fighting each pest. “Good.” He smiled happily. “They've already gotten rid of one, and they're bound to make short work of these last two.” Looking around for his brother, Cootie saw nothing. “Maybe I was wrong. Maybe he isn't here at all.” Just as he was about to leave, a shrill scream filled the air. The soldiers, intent on their task, did not even flinch as the scream came again.
“That sounded like Mootie!” Cootie thought. “What is he doing?” Running for the place where the scream had come from, he suddenly stopped in shock. A very angry pest was looming over a very frightened mootix, who was struggling to escape. The pest was clattering Mootie around the head with one large paw, and holding him down with the other, growling angrily all the time as Mootie's attempts at escape became fainter.
“Get away from him!” Cootie shouted. Then, running as if possessed, he scurried right up to the pest's tail and nipped at it with sharp teeth, honed by weeks of gnawing at stone and stick. The pest angrily rounded on the green mootix and snapped his own jaws angrily.
“B-back off!” Cootie said, baring his teeth and growling feebly. The pest grunted, obviously not intimidated by the small petpetpet, just annoyed, and lumbered off.
“Y-yeah!” Cootie barked. “You'd better run away!” When he was sure the beast was gone, he ran to his, brother.
“Mootie? Mootie? Are you okay?” he asked frantically, shaking his brother's shoulder. Mootie opened his eyes.
“I... I think so,” he said, sitting up and shaking his head. Suddenly, as if just realizing his brother's presence, he exclaimed and hugged him. “You were awesome! That pest won't be coming back anytime soon!”
“Aw, it... it was nothing,” Cootie said, attempting to be modest and boastful at the same time.
“If anyone in our family should be a soldier, it's you, Cootie.” Mootie raised his head happily.
“Really?” Cootie asked, raising an eyebrow and pretending to be skeptical. “Not Fiara?”
Both brothers laughed.
“So, no more 'adventures', right?” Cootie asked. “No more following the soldiers when you aren't supposed to?”
“No way!” Mootie exclaimed. “That was awesome!” Cootie's face became a mask of horror. Mootie laughed. “I'm kidding,” he explained. “No, no more adventures ever.”
If you are reading this, I'm in the times! Woot! *Hands out cookies to all*