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Birthday Gifts and Surprises


by camillebooboo

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The pound cage rattled. The Kougra next to me. Then another pet was dropped into our already crowded cage. Wails all around.

      What day was it? The 13th. I hope I get out in two days.

      It's a very special day. Someone's birthday. Someone very important.

      It's my sister's birthday.

      I love her so much. I would have neomailed earlier, but we're not allowed to.

      Then I realized. I had to get out. I have to neomail her. I must be adopted.

      I rattled my cage this time. It was obvious that the passing owners did not want a pet that rattled her cage.

      "Stop it! Stop it! I hate that noise!"

      "Please adopt me!" I yelled. The owner looked at me. "Yes! Me!"

      "Why should I?"

      "Please! It's my sister's birthday in two days!"

      She snorted. "Nice try, Aisha. Trying to put an excuse? I wouldn't adopt you for that."

      "Please!"

      "Well then!" She walked away. I had to. Fade had to get the message from me. I promised. She had to know I love her.

      "SOMEONE! Please adopt me!"

      Owners and pet snickered. But I had to get out.

      For that important. That November 15th birthday.

      Don't worry big sis! I'll wish you a happy birthday at some point!

      Yet no one came to adopt me today. It was a little disappointing to fall asleep.

      I should have started earlier.

      Maybe someone will come tomorrow.

      I smacked against the cage, hoping someone would adopt me. Smack. Smack. Smack.

      Owners looked and left. A green Aisha with a long name. Nothing they were looking for.

      One boy came up to me eventually, hearing me yell about Fade.

      "What's your sister's name?"

      "Faded underscore shadow. Faded_Shadow. We both got abandoned, and she got immediately adopted."

      "I can see why. Lalala1234567890987654321 isn't a really interesting name."

      "My owner liked it."

      "No, she didn't. Just guessing. I'd adopt you, but I already have four pets."

      I frowned. "It's okay. Don't abandon one of your pets.

      "I'll drop a message on the pound chat board because I feel sorry for you."

      "Thank you kind owner! Thank you!"

      "Not a problem."

      Maybe I'll be out in time for her birthday.

      I didn't smack the bars of the cage. I assumed someone would eventually come. The other pets in my cage didn't say anything. They have no hope. Someone would come. Someone had to come. Right?

      I heard a few drops on the ceiling. Maybe it was raining. That would be nice. Fade likes the rain. I like the rain. I like water. I wish I knew how to swim.

      Drip. Drip. Drip.

      Fade also loves music. Patterns. That's what the rain probably reminds her of.

      Drip. Drip. Drip.

      I wonder if she still loves me?

      Drip. Drip. Drip.

      There's a leak in the top.

      Drip. Drip. Drip.

      I took a step back and bumped into a red Draik.

      "When'd you get here?"

      "You didn't notice? Like, ten minutes ago."

      A group of owners rushed by our cage. The pink Uni unlocked it, and the owner in front grinned as they scooped him up.

      The rest of the owners sighed, but I yelled, "Wait! I'm nice too!"

      One looked at me. "I wanted that Draik. You're an Aisha. Anyone can get an Aisha."

      "But... it's for my sister!"

      "Your sister?"

      "Faded_Shadow. Will you send her a neomail?"

      "Sure. I'll find her owner and tell her it's from you."

      "Thank you! Thank you!"

      "No problem. My pleasure."

      He left too.

      Tomorrow's her birthday. I'll stay up till midnight if I have to.

      And I will.

      I sat on the floor, looking outside of the cage, flashing my puppyblew eyes. People passed by. No one looked.

      How come Fade and that red Draik got scooped up so fast? What happened to personality? Why doesn't that count? Why only color?"

      I looked out at the owners again. I really wanted to make a sign. It would say, "Do you want a kind and sweet pet? Adopt me! Personality: Strong. Rare Species or Color not included."

      I stared at the owners again. They didn't stare at me. They stared at my color. Then they turned away.

      I just sat there, watching. Watching for a long time.

      Finally, the pink Uni came to my cage.

      "Is someone here to adopt me?"

      "Lalala... It's 11:30."

      "Ooh! Only 30 more minutes until her birthday!"

      She sighed. "Who's birthday?"

      "Fade. My sister."

      "You talk a lot about her."

      "I really love her."

      "Hope you get adopted. That would make her really happy."

      "Thanks. Thank you so much."

      "I'll come back when it's midnight. When it is, get some sleep, okay?"

      I nodded. "Thanks."

      She's like that to everyone. But it's nice to feel loved.

      The rain drops fell on the floor as she walked away. It feels like when my sister walked away the first time.

      I closed my eyes and tried to remember when it happened.

      "When do you think someone will adopt us?"

      She grinned. "I don't know, Lala. It could take awhile."

      Fade bent her shadow Aisha ears. She said the last statement in a sad way. I didn't get the reference.

      "Look! Someone's there!"

      Sure enough, a girl was standing there. "Ooh! A shadow Aisha with a cool name!"

      "Can you take my sister too?"

      "Sorry. I only have one more slot."

      "But-"

      "I'll take her!"

      That pink Uni came and unlocked the cage. Fade looked at me.

      "It's December. When it's my birthday, come visit me, okay? Come visit me on November 15th. My birthday."

      "What if I'm not adopted?"

      "You will be. You will."

      I smiled at her. "I'm going to miss you!"

      "Bye little sis!" Her owner hurried her along. I smiled. She was going to be so happy.

      I woke up. It was drizzling. The leak in the roof was fixed.

      I missed it! Her birthday!

      "HAPPY BIRTHDAY, FADE!" I yelled. Everyone woke up and looked at me. I sighed, and closed my eyes.

      Some say that living at a pound for almost a year will suck all the hope and life out of you. But I love Fade too much.

      I will be adopted. I will.

      The pink Uni found me. "I came at midnight, and you were asleep."

      "You should have woken me up!"

      "Yeah. Maybe you wouldn't have woken everyone up this morning!"

      She walked off. I looked in the distance.

      "Sorry. Fade would have never done it."

      The Uni seemed to sigh. "You're not going to be adopted. You realize that?"

      I smiled. "So? Apologies for waking everyone up. Really. I'm sorry."

      She smiled. "Thank you. I'm going to go now, okay?"

      "Sure! Go ahead!"

      She hopped off. I watched her.

      I will be adopted. I will. I must be.

      For Fade.

      I've been up and screaming all day. No one adopted me. No one.

      I had almost lost hope. But I was still going to keep strong.

      Keep strong until 11:59:59 NST.

      Then I heard it.

      It was a light voice. A sweet voice. A voice I had heard before.

      My ears perked up, but my head stayed down.

      I heard the laugh, and I looked up. It was the pink Uni talking.

      "That's all she talks about, you know. That's all she talks about."

      Then I saw the black.

      The shadow Aisha.

      "FADE!" I screamed. I hit the bars, trying to break free. "FADE!"

      She ran over to the cage. My cage rattled on and on.

      "Let's try not to wake everyone, okay?"

      "Fade! Fade! You came! You came!"

      Her owner was there. It was a girl - a different one.

      "It's all she wanted for her birthday was to see her little sister."

      "Fade! Fade!"

      The Uni smiled and took out a key. "No, you're not being adopted. I want to let you out to see your sister for a little bit."

      Fade looked at her. "Is that even allowed?"

      "No, but that's not going to stop me."

      I smiled at her as she unlocked the cage. I gave Fade a big hug.

      "Fade! You're here! You're really here!"

      "I got transferred from owner to owner. My old one traded me for an eventide Lupe. I was more than ready to leave."

      Fade's owner laughed. "He was rude enough to me. I was happy to see him go."

      They both laughed. They are so similar. Fade must be happy.

      "We don't have a lot of time, but I wanted to say hi!"

      "Happy birthday! I've been trying to get adopted so that I could neomail you."

      "It's funny. An owner neomailed us saying you said hi and happy birthday ten minutes ago. That's when we decided to come. I completely forgot about you."

      I frowned. "You did?"

      "I'm so sorry."

      I looked at the ground. She forgot about me. I never forget about her.

      I looked at her. Then I smiled. "It's okay! I still love you!"

      I gave her one last hug. Then we saw the shadow of a Techo.

      "Quick!" The Uni shoved me back in my cage. Dr_Death stood there.

      "What are you doing?"

      "These are sisters. It's one of their birthdays."

      Dr_Death sighed. "Go ahead Charlotte and do whatever. I'll be back in a few minutes."

      I looked at Fade (after he left). "Don't ever forget me again."

      "Don't worry. I won't."

      Her owner smiled. "Ready?"

      Fade nodded. "Neomail the minute you get adopted. Please."

      "Okay. Bye, Fade! Happy birthday!"

      I could have sworn that I saw tears scampering among her cheek when she left.

      "Bye, Lala!"

      She didn't want to leave, but in the end, she turned away and scampered off. I was alone.

      The pink Uni (apparently named Charlotte) looked at me. "Don't tell people my name is Charlotte. They know me as Rose. It's my last name."

      I nodded at her. I had no idea why. But that was the only thing on her mind.

      "Thanks! Hope you're happy! Your sister seems to love you!"

      I nodded. "She does."

      "See you tomorrow!"

      I collapsed on the ground. I want to be adopted. I have to be. For Fade.

      But I need my rest.

      "Excuse me? Excuse me?"

      I rubbed my eyes, and looked up. A girl was standing by my cage. "I'm awfully sorry to bother you, but are you Lalala1234567890987654321?"

      I jumped up. "Yes! I am!"

      "Did your sister have a nice birthday yesterday? A guy posted about you in the Neoboards. I was touched."

      I smiled. "She visited me."

      "That's so sweet!"

      "Will you adopt me?"

      "Sure!"

      I couldn't believe it. All this time. And now... I'm being adopted!

      Charlotte accepted fees, and smiled at me as I left.

      "Where do you want to go first?"

      I thought about it. "Can we go to Maraqua? I've never been before!"

      "Sure! Although I'm not rich enough to take you to Kelp, I'd be glad to."

      We visited Maraqua. It was so cool! The residents gave us temporary necklaces of seaweed so we could breathe. We went fishing and looked around the petpet store. I got my first petpet - an Urgoni. He has trouble making friends in the store, so I couldn't resist asking - my owner was fine with it.

      "What's your name, by the way?" I asked her.

      "I'm Desti. What's yours?"

      "You know my name!"

      "My username is really long too. That doesn't stop me from having a name."

      "Okay. My name is... Flutter? Does that work?"

      "Sure! Hi Flutter!"

      We came out of the water, and I stepped on the shore. "My necklace!"

      She laughed. "We get to keep them, smart one. They only work in Maraqua."

      "Oh! That's so cool!"

      "Would you like to meet your siblings?"

      "Sure!"

      She brought me to my neohome. There were two other pets there. They both perked up.

      The yellow Tuskaninny introduced herself first. "I'm Bumble. I am now. My name's long and unpronounceable, so I go by Bumble. Nice to meet you!"

      The green Koi went next. "This is really random, but I'm Dragonfly. I just like the way it sounds. Pleasure!"

      I smiled. "Sorry I can't go swimming with you two."

      "You could... if you were Maraquan!"

      I laughed. "I've always wanted to be Maraquan! It sounds so cool!"

      Bumble and Dragonfly both looked at Desti. She smiled.

      "I needed a pound pet to treat with something. I got a fountain faerie quest this morning."

      I was shocked. "Really?"

      "Yeah, and Bumble and Flutter both like their colors. They don't want to be anything else."

      I got painted Maraquan that day. It's all happening so fast.

      Wouldn't Fade be jealous?

      Wait... Fade!

      Now I know how she forgot me. The good times make you think about yourself and the people around you. I wasn't around Fade. She isn't around now, and I'm pretty happy.

      But she doesn't know I've been adopted! Or painted!

      "Desti?" I asked, on the way back.

      "What?"

      "Can we visit Fade?"

      "Sure! Let's go! Do you have her address?"

      "Um... No."

      "It's okay. Let's find a directory."

      We used a really cool directory called, "The Search Bar." We found Fade in no time.

      "Here we go! 2747 Tombola Way, Mystery Island. Let's go!"

      It was a little annoying, since it was hot outside. But surprisingly, Maraquan pets can breathe fine outside water.

      We rang the doorbell. Fade answered.

      "Hi, Fade. It's Flutter."

      "Flutter? Who's-"

      "I mean Lala. I got adopted today. And painted. I needed a new name. Lalala1234567890987654321 is a little too long. So I'm Flutter."

      Fade looked at me. Tears welled up in her eyes.

      "Happy Birthday!" I exclaimed, suddenly grinning like the little sister I always am. Then I gave her a hug.

      I truly didn't miss her birthday after all.

The End

If you're reading this, then I got in! :D :D :D I wrote this in honor of Neopet's 13th birthday :)

 
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