Abandoned: A Second Chance?
- Fulinar -
My name is Fulinar, and I'm a baby Kacheek. My Mother went on hiatus a year ago, but she showed up last week to talk to my sister, Mel. I don't know what she said, but she only kissed me goodbye before leaving. Mel, a grey Draik, seemed to be skittish after she left. Mel took be outside and wrapped me in a blanket; it was cold, and late at night.
"Taff, go to sleep," she says, but I can't sleep. Then, she starts humming a song, and it makes me doze off. The last thing I remember is her arm, tightly wrapped around me.
- Miss -
"Move, get out of the way!" a pound volunteer screams. She pushes me and a hundred other pets out of the way to see it.
A baby Kacheek, wrapped in a blanket, holding a bottle in her tiny arms. The pound volunteer picks her up, and takes her into TNT's Pound Office. When she comes back in, the baby Kacheek is an Ogrin.
"The previous owner put a morphing potion in her bottle," the volunteer explains. "We will be choosing one neopet to take care of her as a roommate. Show us enough responsibility, and we might choose you. Please go back to your normally scheduled activities."
I learn the Ogrin's name is Fulinar. I have to find out her story, I must! Who would leave a baby Kacheek with a morphing potion on the pound's doorstep? If they hated the pet, they would have morphed her beforehand. Since they hid it in the bottle, they must have loved her very much.
Which begs the question... why is she here?
- Fulinar -
When I wake, I expect Mel to be holding me, ready to feed me breakfast. Instead I find myself on a soggy bed, covered with old canvas sheets. Where am I? Where's Mel? I look down at my feet and shriek.
I'm an Ogrin.
A yellow Ogrin.
I don't even know where I am, and I'm an Ogrin. How could Mel let this happen to me? Why am I an Ogrin? Why did Mel leave me here to rot? I was just a baby Kacheek a few hours ago, and now I've entered a whole new world. I guess, to look on it positively, I've been given a second chance. A new chance at life, I suppose. Even at that, tears fall down my cheeks. Mel's gone for good now.
A pound volunteer approaches me.
"Hello, Fulinar." She touches my head. "Tell me about yourself. How did you get here?"
Tears fill my eyes. "I don't know..."
"Fulinar," she says. "TNT won't let you go until we find out how you got here. How did you get here?"
Who in Neopia is TNT? I've heard my moth—my former mother speaking about them in a rage. I wonder why they won't let me leave. "I told you, I don't know. Mel was holding me just a moment ago. She was taking me for a walk."
"Is Mel your sister's full name?" I shake my head.
"Melshye, grey Draik," I say. "She was hatched and painted by my former owner."
"I'm sorry this happened to you," she says, placing a package of clothes in front of me. Faded pink pants and a matching shirt. She helps me dress, and even brushes my blonde hair.
"Thank you," I tell her as she gets up to leave.
"You deserve it." She smiles. "You've been through a lot."
- Miss -
The pound volunteer says Fulinar will stay under her and TNT's care until they find a suitable roommate. I could be a good roommate for her; since I won't be getting out of here anytime soon. My friend, a Christmas Shoyru named Florrletti (I call him Ret) meets me in the small yard behind the pound, where we're allowed to roam. The fences, though, are barbed so we can't escape.
Always trapped, always unwanted.
"Nice weather," Ret murmurs. "If only we could be out there."
He points to a park, where neopets are playing. Going down slides, singing, reading, brushing their petpets and chatting. Owners could be discussing ways to earn NP, or even the Stock Market. Who knows what else?
"You don't belong here," Ret murmurs. "Miss, you belong somewhere else. Somewhere happy."
"Nobody wants me," I say, touching the cold, metal fence. "Nobody wants little_miss_love7. Nobody does, Ret."
He just smirks a little and says, "We'll see, Miss."
After he leaves, I feel hollowness inside me, and not just my stomach. It's my heart. I blame it on the April Fool's joke. All of it.
- Fulinar -
This time, when the tendrils of slumber release me, the pound volunteer isn't there. I panic, standing on the mattress covered with canvas blankets. Where is she? Why has she left me alone?
Before anything, tears start running down my cheeks. I cry silently, releasing my sadness in the small drops of salt water. I tasted my tears when I was with Mel. They were salty and bitter, and tasted like sadness itself.
Like this moment, right now.
It seems like an eternity before someone comes. It's a Christmas Shoyru, with large white spots on his wings.
"My name is Florrletti," he says, tossing me a pillow. "You can call me Ret, everyone does. I've been here for a long time."
"My name is Fulinar," I say.
"I've heard a lot about you," Ret says, brushing fur away from my eyes. "You must have quite a story to tell. Why don't we sit and chat? It seems like you need a talk."
Before I know what's happening, words spill from my mouth. My mother's hiatus, being a baby, Mel, waking up here. So much has happened to me. So much pain, so much loss. I just can't wrap my mind around why Mel dropped me off here. Where are you, sister? I ask myself, waiting the answer I'm not getting.
"You have had quite the story," Ret says. "C'mon, you should meet Miss."
"Miss who?" I ask.
"No, no. Her name is Miss," he says, leading me outside of our small room. He leads me through narrow pathways. I try to ignore the hollow cheeks and sad faces of the other neopets.
I soon realize I can't.
- Miss -
When I see Ret again, I remember that I must congratulate him. He'll get to look after little Fulinar until one of them is adopted, which means they could rot in the pound forever. Maybe there isn't a happy ending. Maybe our ends will come after years of sitting, rotting in the pound.
"Hello, Ret," I say as he approaches my right. Fulinar follows him, struggling to walk. I watch her sit next to Ret, who sits across from me.
"Hello, Miss. I'd like to introduce you to the beautiful Fulinar. The pound volunteer wanted you and I to switch off taking care of her."
Huh? I never heard that. "It's very nice to meet you, Lin." I smile.
"Nobody has ever called me Lin," Fulinar says. "But I like it. It's new, it's refreshing."
"Great." I giggle. "You know, Lin, you don't have to be the little Kacheek on the doorstep anymore. You can remake yourself here."
I get a laugh out of her. "I think my current reputation is fine with me. You know my story, but what's your story?"
"There's nothing much to tell," I say. "My mother made me, then pounded me. I have always wanted to be royal, but I can't, because of my ugly name."
"Which would be?" Lin asks.
"little_miss_love7," I say. "Nobody likes me, and nobody has shown interest in me for a long time. It's over for me."
"You can't give up!" Lin says. "I won't let you! On your next active shift, we're—you too, Ret—going to try and be adopted!"
"It will never happen. Ever," I say.
"Don't be so sure, Miss," Lin says. "Nobody knows your story. Nobody knows Ret's story. Now they do. And, now, we'll have homes."
AUTHOR'S NOTES: Will YOU give Fulinar, little_miss_love7, and Florrletti a good home? That's right—I chose three pounded pets specifically for this story. Please give them a good home! :)
And, as always, my inbox is open for comments/suggestions/randomness!