Juggling Life: Part Three
I glanced round at all the boxes that were piled up in the front room. I never realised how much stuff Mina and I had owned, before. There were at least fifty of them, all together. It would cost a fortune to get them shipped to Neopia Central. I know that the cost of moving would just add to my debt, but going to the capital would be my best chance of employment.
"Rana." Mina clapped her hands and repeated the word over and over. She was about half a year old know and getting the hang of speech.
"No Mina. It's Rain." She still hadn't got her mind round that word.
It was absolutely mental outside. The worst storm there's been in years.
The lower Island was at risk from flooding. My neohome and the shop were safe, as it was usefully on a hill, but I didn't know what would happen to the rest of the island.
"What shall we do now?" I asked Mina.
"Get Slorgy from the window!" Mina said very slowly. I didn't know if this was some sort of game or a person.
"Who's Slorgy?" I asked, genuinely curious. She just pointed to the window. I saw a rather large slorg stuck to it, clinging for dear life. Several leaves and puddles of mud were keeping him company on the window too.
"We can't bring him in the house, Mina. I'm sure he'll survive." Do Slorgs survive storms? I guessed they did, as they weren't extinct or anything.
"Waaaaaaaaaaaaaa. I don't want Slorgy to die!" She began to whimper.
"Fine." I went over to the window and gently inched it open. Suddenly the whole thing flew open. I grabbed Slorgy and threw him inside. By this time, I looked an absolute wreck.
The wind had managed to unravel my bun and my hair lay in rats tails around my shoulders. My clothes were soaked through. I looked as if I had been in a fight with a Krawken and lost.
Slorgy went over to Mina. He left a long slime trail across the floor boards. I didn't particularly want him in the house, but I would never win the fight with Mina.
One thing was sure, though. He certainly wouldn't be coming to work with us.
That probably wouldn't be a problem for long, though. We have completely lost all our customers. Of course, Beryl doesn't come in anymore, so we don't even have the few neopoints she used to provide us with. We are going to have to close soon. Probably within the next month.
"How am I meant to pay for training school? And how are you and Mina going to survive?" Tears welled up in Toms eyes. He quickly blinked them away again, not wanting to look weak in front of me.
"I'm sorry, Tom, but I can't keep running a business that makes no money. I'm sure you will be able to find another job. You're the best person who has ever worked for me." A small smile creeped onto his face. Then, it quickly disappeared, after he realised he was the only person who had ever worked for me.
"But what are you and Mina going to do?" he said and fiddled with the mug of Tchea tea in his paws.
"You don't need to worry about us. I'll find something in Neopia Central." To be honest, I even thought that that plan was a pretty lame idea. It didn't even have any guarantee of working. I had to take the risk, though. The only other solution I could think of was to kill Princess Juppie.
"What if we advertised more?" Tome suggested. I thought about it for a moment.
"Advertising costs money. And I have already found a place in Neopia Central."
"I could pay for it and couldn't you cancel moving over there?" It was a nice idea, but nothing could save us now.
"Well, yeah, I could cancel, but it's not really ideal for the owners of the house. I'm sorry, sometimes we just have to accept our fate."
There was a long pause. The only thing you could hear was the crashing of the waves and the buzz of insects. Other than that, the café was completely silent.
"I'm gonna miss you, Drippey. You too, Mina."
"Mina and I will miss you too."
And, then, we cried. It was horrible. Tom was losing his first ever job and I was losing my first ever business.
I looked at the "For sale" sign planted in the path. I wondered what would happen to this place. Maybe I could come back and visit it, one day. I doubted I would ever get enough money to get a boat back over here though.
I looked at Mina and Slorgy, curled up in their crib.
"Mina, time to wake up. It's moving day." Usually, when someone's moving, it's always for a good reason, like a new job, or the families got too big for their old house. This was completely opposite.
The cart was going to arrive, in about an hour, and I needed to get Mina washed and dressed.
I ran some hot water into the disco bath tub and laid out some clothes for Mina.
Usually, she loved having baths, and she'd pretend to be a Flotsam. But, today, she didn't. She just sat there, with soap suds piled on top of her head, looking very solemn.
Tears started to run down her face.
"Do you want to get out, now?" I said in soft tones that echoed round the empty bath room.
She nodded her head.
When she was dressed, she climbed onto the window sill, and watched the Bruce's load up the cart with our possession. As always, Slorgy was beside her.
The wind and rain was still howling and the rain coming down from the sky in heavy sheets. It was still going strong, even a week after it started.
"That's the last of your stuff backed up, lady. Where do you want us to take this lot down to?" a Bruce called up to me, form the stairs.
I was about to call down to him and tell him to take it to the port, but I was interrupted.
"Stop!" I heard a familiar, male, voice shout.
Mina came running to me from downstairs.
"I saw Tom! Tom's here!" This was the first time she had been happy all morning. " He said that Juppie Gardens is gone. We don't have to go. Yay!"
To be honest, I thought she was just lying so we wouldn't have to leave, but then Tom ran up the stairs.
"Don't go! We're saved. Please, read this." He shoved the latest issue of the Mystery Islands Neopian Times into my hand.
I saw the headline: JUPPIE GARDENS SET SAIL!
Princess Juppie returns to Neopia Central, after storms sweep away her beloved café. She is going to pursue her dream job of becoming a model.
"She's gone? Forever?" I asked with a stupid grin on my face.
"Yes," Tom replied, with an equally stupid grin on his face.
I ran downstairs and said to one of the Bruces, "Would you mind bringing all my things back in? I'm terribly sorry, but there's been a change of plan."
They did as they were told and bought everything back in.
Pieces of wood floated past my feet and vines wrapped around my legs. The water was so deep, it spilled over the top of my knee high wellies. I could make out the framework of where the building used to be, but other than that, nothing was recognisable. It even smelt bad. Like rotting fruit and a weird must.
I never thought that this is what would become of Juppie Gardens. If anything, I thought that this was the kind of thing that would happen to me.
"Never in my life did I think that destruction would make me so happy," I said.
"Me too," Tom agreed.
"And me!" Mina said, in her high pitched voice.
We all laughed and headed home.
That was it. I had sent the neomail to Neopia Central, informing them that I no longer wished to live in their house. I ran over to the Tea Shack and ripped up the "for sale" sign.
I did the same for my neohome as well. I used the wood from the signs as fire wood. It was rather chilly since the rain had come.
An hour after I had lit the fire, the estate agent came for his signs back. He was a rather hefty Krawk. I figured he would be able to withstand the rain, so I left him on the door step and went to get his sign.
I then remembered that I had burnt it.
"Who is it, Mama?" Mina asked. She was playing with Slorgy in front of the fire.
"It's the estate agent. He wants his sign back!"
"But it's on fire," she giggled.
I went into the kitchen and got a sandwich bag. Some ashes had fallen on the floor. I scooped those into the bag.
I went back to the front door.
"Here you go," I said, dropping the bag into his hands.
Before he could complain, I slammed the door in his face.
Then, Mina and I relaxed in front of the fire. This is how life should be for everyone... perfect.
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