Some Bonds are Never Broken
"Harpier, my feet hurt. Are we there yet?"
I dug my claws into the ice. It's just something about my little sister's voice that bugs me more than you would think.
I turned around to look at her, my skinny black tail lashing the ground.
"Well, Pacina, maybe you shouldn't have come. You're like, what, a week old? Should you really be travelling through the Ice Caves at that old?"
The little green Aisha just looked at me for a moment. "I'm sorry, Harpier..." she mumbled at me.
I turned around again and continued walking. My pads made a soft thumping sound against the snowy surface. I ruffled my wings, shook off the cold piercing my fur, and walked around an icicle sticking out of the ground.
I looked over my shoulder at Pacina, who was fluttering her golden wings and hopping over the icicle. Pacina doesn't have real wings like me, but our owner (who prefers I don't say her name,) spent our only Neocash on getting her a fake set of wings so she could follow me everywhere I go. (It was really so she wouldn't need to fly on my back when we go places, but she always asks to anyways.)
After turning a corner, I could just barely see the Neggery from above a hill. Just as I opened my beak to tell Pacina that the Neggery is just a little further, she asked the question that makes me want to pluck all my feathers out and scream at someone.
"Harpier, are we there yet?"
I turned around to face her, my eyes glowing fireballs of rage. I clawed at the ice, leaving cracks all along the path. My tail lashed and icicle behind me as I growled.
Pacina jumped a little, her whole body shaking fervently. Her bottom lip trembled, and her creepy extra set of ears started to droop. She looked satisfyingly terrified.
"Yes, Pacina, we were almost there. But you obviously don't see the Neggery that is probably looming behind my head. Maybe you should have an extra set of eyes to go with your extra set of ears. And maybe you wouldn't have to keep saying that if you didn't insist to follow me EVERYWHERE! And maybe I would never have to know your stupid, high pitched voice if our owner NEVER EVEN ADOPTED YOU," I finished with a snarl.
Pacina just stared at me, her mouth trembling fast. Her eyes started to water and she took a step away from me. Her tail drooped until it was brushing the ice. I knew what was coming next.
"Oh, no, Pacina, don't-"
I didn't even get to finish my sentence. Salty tears started to drip down her cheeks, and then her eyes disappeared in an explosion of tears. Her cries echoed through the cavern, piercing my ears. Puddles of tears were forming around her feet. All throughout the caverns, Neopets started to look up from what they were doing to glare at me. A mountain of guilt fell on my shoulders.
"Pacina, don't cry, I didn't mean it. Please, please stop crying."
The truth is, I had meant every word I said. Even when my owner first came home with Pacina, I had hated her. Her annoying little laugh, asking me stupid questions like where I lived.
I shook my head. Pacina was no longer in front of me. I looked down the path and saw her running away as fast as she could, flapping her wings for speed boosts. I didn't blame her, after what I said.
My feet felt like they were glued in place. My shadowy wings drooped, an my head bobbed until it was almost touching the ground.
I heard a mumble and lifted my head up. A blue Tuskaninny was glaring at me. "Nice going, Eyrie," he said angrily. He walked away, and everyone else went back to what they were doing.
I was ashamed. I shook myself, and something metallic clinked against my sweatpants. I looked down to see a small pocket watch hanging from my waist. A twang of guilt mixed with sadness stabbed at my heart.
I fingered the small watch and looked at it. It was old and bronze, but you couldn't really tell it was so covered in rust, I flipped it over and looked at the words carved on the back.
"To Harpier, with love. I'm so glad to be a part of your family now. Signed, Pacina," I said out loud to myself. My eyes started to water.
When Pacina had first arrived, she handed me this little watch. It had a little green bow around it. Pacina had given it to me as a way of saying 'thanks for adopting me'. I put the watch in my pocket right away, and I never went anywhere without it. Sometimes I would swim to the depths of the ocean just to go to the Underwater Fishing Cavern, and I would take this with me every time. Every adventure and scheme since Pacina arrived, my watch was with me. My heart beat heavily, and darkness flooded my thoughts. What have I done?
I don't know what muddled up emotion sent me running after Pacina, but I went as fast as possible. A trail of tears led the way, and I flapped my wings for speed and balance. Here I was, the most hard-hearted Neopet I knew, racing after someone just to apologize. I guess my sister had more influence on me than I thought.
I burst out of the Ice Caves and shot into the sky, ignoring the tiredness in my body. The snowstorm I flew into beat against my wings, throwing me off-course. The wind played with my neck ruff and tail. Icy hail stung against my back. But I flew on.
I reached the edge of the ocean, and the storm started to quiet down. The snow fell slower and the hail stopped. I looked over my shoulder at the shape of Terror Mountain.
Beating my wings as fast as I possibly could, I reached Neopia Central and spiraled down.
The snow stopped falling as I reached the Pound. If Pacina went anywhere, it would probably be here. Unless she was at home, but I decided to avoid Mom for a little while just in case.
The Pound was fairly empty when I walked in, except for a little blonde-haired boy that looked to be about eight years old and a very rich-looking man talking to the Uni about adopting a Faerie Lenny.
I cautiously walked in, trying not to attract the attention of the Uni or the little boy. But sure enough, the rich man and his new Lenny left, leaving me standing right in front of the Uni.
"Hey, hey," she called, sounding tired and anxious. "If your owner abandoned you, I'm afraid you'll have to go see Dr. Death first. We can take you in after," she said with a snarky tone.
I shrugged my shoulders. "But my owner didn't abandon me," I said quickly. "I'm just looking for my sister.
The Uni eyed me suspiciously. "Did your owner abandon your sister?" she said with a questioning look.
I sighed. "Well," I said, trying to sound snarkier than her, "did a little green Aisha with fake gold wings come in here saying she was abandoned?"
The Uni checked her charts. I guess it was a list of the Neopets that were in the Pound.
"No," she said after giving the paper a thorough look. "We haven't had any Aishas abandoned today. I'm sorry," she said with a sympathetic look that was obviously fake. I grumbled and stormed out the door.
I tried to think of the next place she might be. Where does Pacina like to go? I thought to myself. She seemed to really love the Money Tree, so I thought I should try there next.
I got to the Money Tree as it started to rain, drops splattering off the leaves onto my head. I looked around. There was no one here, and the only items were an Old Rotten Right Boot, a Deviled Steak, and a Pile of Dung. I didn't see the joy in the Money Tree when all people donated was junk.
Pacina obviously wasn't here. As I turned to leave, I saw a shivering little Xweetok starting to walk up to the Money Tree. She looked very young. Remembering the junk that was donated, I took a small bag of neopoints out of my pocket. There were about one-hundred. I figured it wasn't a lot, but it was better than what was under there now.
I walked up to the Xweetok and placed the bag of Neopoints in her hands. She looked up at me with large, thankful eyes. I gave her a warm smile and continued down the street, rain pattering against the pavement.
Anyone who looked at me, that lone Shadow Eyrie walking down the empty street, may have thought I was abandoned. Or secretive. Or both.
But truth was, I had a purpose to be walking down that lonely street. I was looking for someone. Much more than just a friend. I was looking for my sister.
Night fell, and the rain stopped. I thought about flying to Faerieland, for Pacina loved to blow all her Neopoints playing the Wheel of Fortune. She never really won anything.
Pacina would never really tell anyone this, but she found the faeries kind of intimidating. Even the kind and beautiful Marina, keeper of the Healing Springs.
Thinking about it, Pacina had loved pretty much everywhere they went. She was a kind and loving little kid, with the first part of her name, Pac, meaning peace. For as long as I knew my little sis, which wasn't very long, she was keeping the peace in our house. She never fought with anyone. She was the perfect child.
I searched for another two hours and finally gave up. I was dragging from exhaustion, and I was starving. I had given the last of my Neopoints to that Xweetok, so I couldn't buy anything to eat. My eyelids drooped heavily, and my legs could barely hold me up.
I flapped slowly into the air and started heading in the direction of Mystery Island. At the pace I was going, I probably wouldn't get there until dawn.
I looked at the stars overhead. I had never been a big fan of astronomy, until Pacina started bugging me about it constantly. I thought I spotted a constellation, although I couldn't remember what it was called. My heart ached for Pacina to be with me. I never really realized how much I missed her.
I looked down and saw Mystery Island in the distance. The palm trees were waving slowly, and a slight tropical breeze blew across my face. My paws padded softly as I landed on the sandy beach. My Neohome was just off the beach, but not quite into the forest. I took in the scent of the sea air, all salty and smelling of fish. This was the beauty of Mystery Island. Everything here is perfect.
I started walking softly towards my house. Mom would be furious that I was gone so long, and I didn't bring my sister back with me.
I folded in my wings and tried to look as hidden as possible. My color made it easy for me to blend into the shadows of the trees. I crept up to the front door, thinking I was home free. I should've known that wasn't the case.
The front door swung open, flooding my path with a blinding light. I froze in my tracks as Mom glared down at me.
"H-hey, Mom," I said with a toothy grin. She didn't look amused.
She dragged me inside and gave me a stern look. "Harpier! You've been gone far too long. I knew I should've gone along. You always get distracted. And where is your sister, young lady?"
I breathed out a sigh of relief and sadness. So Pacina hadn't come crying home to our owner about it. I had to think up a lie about Pacina, fast.
I gulped. "W-we were just playing on the beach. I wanted to come home and tell you where we were. Pacina is waiting for me. D-do you want me to go get her?" I said, wincing, hoping she'd buy it.
I saw a wave of relief wash over my owner. She looked me over, then replied, "Okay. As long as you don't get distracted again, missy. Go bring your sister in, you two need sleep."
I walked out the door into the cool, refreshing night. I walked away to the beach, sighing with relief that my owner bought the bluff. Now I just needed to find Pacina.
I reached the beach, where Mom couldn't see. I looked around, hoping to see Pacina walk out of the trees. But nothing happened.
I perked my ears up at a commotion in the distance. I have exceptional hearing.
Looking out in the sky, I saw a flash of green. My heart leaped. "Pacina?" I called with uncertainty.
The little green blur sped up, then faltered. A few moments later, the blur landed in a cloud of sand. I peered hopefully at the little cloud. The dust cleared, revealing a little green Aisha. With fake golden wings.
"Pacina!" I rushed over as fast as my feet could carry me and enveloped Pacina in a hug. My wings flared around her, hugging her closer. I had found my sister.
Pacina looked up at me happily. Her tears had dried, and her warm smile had returned.
"Pacina! Where did you go? I looked at the Pound, the Money Tree, everywhere!" I said, letting her out of my hug.
Pacina smiled brightly. "Well," she said, "I went to deliver your negg to the Negg Faerie. I figured that was the whole reason we went there in the first place."
"But aren't you mad at me?" I blurted out. "I mean, after what I said, it was so rude. I thought you'd never forgive me."
"You're my sister, and I knew you didn't mean it. I was just being obnoxious." Her smile disappeared for moment, then returned.
I knew she was right. I thought I had meant what I said. I thought I always hated Pacina. But I was just jealous. I had loved her from the start. But what can I say? She is really cute. I love Pacina, and i always will. I'll protect her forever. And she would protect me. She would keep me out of trouble. I would vouch for her if anything bad ever happens. I can promise this. And I'm sure she'll promise too. I don't go off on my words. She'll be my little sis forever.
Some bonds are never broken.