Name and All: Part One
There is nothing overly amazing about my birth; I was created by my owner, as all Neopets are. Our entire being is determined by the choices our owner makes for us before we are born. Almost everything that I am: my species, my color, my abilities, even my personality was determined by this one person. And sometimes we find that those decisions aren’t always the best ones.
I remember being surrounded by a bright warm light as I was being created. Even though my eyes had not opened yet I could feel it shining through my eyelids. I could hear muffled voices, along with the sound of clicking; I could feel myself taking form. My newly made ears pricked up at hearing loud noises of excitement, and I smiled faintly. I knew by some instinct that this happy voice belonged to my owner, soon to be my life long friend.
As I began to slowly open my eyes for the first time, I could see a hazy image of a young boy; I could barely make out a smile that seemed to stretch from ear to ear, with one of his front teeth missing. He was jumping up and down with such fervor I could feel the floorboards shaking. Wobbling on my short legs, I stumbled a few times before gaining a sense of balance.
Blinking slowly, I rubbed my eyes with my paws, hoping to clear my vision. Raising my head to take in my surroundings, I found myself in a large room. In a nearby mirror I saw myself for the first time: a short and furry blue creature. A Kacheek, I seemed to intuitively know. I turned my head back towards my new friend; only slightly taller than myself, yet enough where I had to tilt my neck to meet his excited gaze.
“Who... am I?” I asked in a whisper. Being used for the first time, my voice was rather hoarse and soft, and I struggled to form the words. I looked to my new friend and owner, awaiting his answer; my tail swayed back and forth in excitement.
His smile grew even wider, making his eyes squint with glee. Holding out a certificate in his hand with pride, he pointed it towards me that I could see. It read... Amaya_2345 the Blue Kacheek? My newborn eyes widened in surprise. Granted, I was just born, but even I thought a name like that was strange. “How exactly do I pronounce that last part?” I asked with a puzzled look on my face.
“Exactly how it’s spelled,” the little boy huffed matter-of-factly. “Amaya was already taken, so I just added some numbers to your name! Pretty smart, huh?”
I sighed with frustration, but accepted that nothing could be done about it; after all, it’s not like names are that important, right? What was of importance was that it was a name my owner chose for me, and that made it special. This thought gave me a feeling of warmth and comfort. I decided to make the best of it and move on.
My owner stuck out his hand to me and piped up, “I’m Adamanche626, Adam for short. I’ve only been in Neopia for a few weeks, so we’ll get to learn about stuff together!”
I took his hand in mine, which he shook enthusiastically. While not off to the best of starts, I looked at Adam’s beaming face and felt a sense of relief somehow; it made me feel that everything would turn out all right.
As the months passed, Adam and I became inseparable. We had many adventures together, from sneaking into the Snowager’s Lair to trying to complete Illusen’s Quests in time. He told me his secrets and dreams, and I always had an open ear for him. He drew pictures of me with the pride of a Neopian Artist, and I lovingly hung them throughout our humble neohome. We were always together, and my owner always had that wide beaming smile for me, a smile that could melt Terror Mountain itself.
I watched as he grew older and taller, to the point where I could ride on his shoulder wherever we went. And while he grew more knowledgeable about the world of Neopia, to me was still just a mischievous kid with a missing tooth in his grin.
One day we ventured into a part of Neopia Central that I was not familiar with. It had a sign that said “NeoBoards” (although I didn’t see any boards whatsoever, the floor was made of stone). Inside were tons of rooms filled with owners and their pets; some were trying to find rare items, others to discuss the impending Meepit invasion. There was a place for anyone to talk about their interests.
Within this odd building was an even odder room. In it, we discovered tons of owners selling something; each one was yelling their loudest to be heard over the din, but we didn’t understand any of it.
“VWN Kyrii UFT! Seeking Royals!”
“Trading RW Mara!! Looking for VWN Pets!”
And on and on they went. Adam walked up to one of them and asked what was going on.
“Why, we trade pets here!” he replied with excitement.
At that point I was halfway out the door, but Adam wanted to stay and ask questions. “What do they mean by ‘VWN’?”
“Very Well Named,” the stranger replied. “Pets that have good names, or are real words are worth more than...” he paused slightly, purposefully tilting his head over towards me, “... say, pets that have strange symbols in their name, or names that aren’t pronounceable.” With a laugh he added, “No one wants pets with bad names, as you can imagine.”
“Oh,” Adam mumbled, appearing to find something of interest by his feet. I saw his shoulders drop; though he had grown taller, suddenly he looked so small to me for some reason. With a smirk the stranger went back into the throng to sell his “wares”.
“C’mon, Adam, let’s get out of here!” I finally jumped to reach his hand and started pulling him towards the exit. He looked back once more and then followed me out.
The sun was starting to set, so we walked home afterwards. Adam was silent for the most part, despite my attempts to cheer him up or get him to say something. Something happened in that room, but I didn’t understand what it was that had bothered him so much. At any rate, I hoped for the best that he would forget about it in the morning and be his normally energetic self.
We reached our neohome just after nightfall. Adam opened the door to let me in, and then turned around to head back to his home. I waved and yelled, “Bye, Adam! Will I see you tomorrow? You said we could play Faerie Bubbles, so don’t forget!”
“Yeah, sure thing,” was all he said, and then started walking away. I watched him leave until his shadow disappeared into the dark, and then closed the door.
Taking a glass of water with me, I walked up the stairs to my room, walking slowly so I could look at the pictures Adam drew for me along the way. I chuckled as I remembered when he told me how in his world, Pets could not talk. I had asked him, “Then how do they cast spells?” and he just laughed in reply. It was moments like that, that made me truly enjoy the time I spent with him.
Taking a sip from my glass, I blew out the candle and snuggled under my covers. “See you in the morning, Adam,” I whispered sleepily. I eventually fell asleep, dreaming about the wondrous things we were going to do the next day. Such a happy, blissful sleep it was.
Imagine my shock when it all ended.
“Get up Amaya, we’re leaving.”
Unused to hearing such a harsh tone, I thought I was still dreaming. Oh, Jelly World, if only you were real, I dreamed, smacking my lips. I suddenly received a rough nudge to wake me from my sleep.
Pulling myself up, I looked up to see my owner Adam. But he wasn’t quite the same; his eyes weren’t gleaming with mischief, and his signature grin was missing.
“C’mon, we gotta hurry.”
Half asleep, I could only manage a nod in response. Taking a moment to stretch my arms and yawn, I then attempted to leap up onto my rightful place on Adam’s shoulders. But Adam simply caught me in midair and set me on the ground. At that point I felt something wasn’t right, but he remained silent for the rest of our trip. I was concerned, and so I did my best to keep to his pace, though it pained my short legs to do so.
Eventually we reached a small building that was split right down the middle. On one side it appeared to be a cute little cottage surrounded by flowers; a lovely Pink Uni, watering plants in her garden, looked up at us. Her once smiling face dropped into a look of disappointment.
To be continued...