The Quest!: Part Three
"I have a bad feeling about this," Lunia thought, from the moment she set foot on those woods.
Lunia and Jex had been wandering through the potential dangers of the Haunted Woods until they reached the gates to the town. When deep in the woods, the old, crooked and tall trees blocked all vision from the sky, leaving a dark path to be explored by the frightened eyes of neopets who dared crossing those lands without a source of light. Luckily, Lunia had brought a Stream of Light bottle with her, and soon they found their ways to the tree-caged town, in which you could feel safer from the blind menaces of the deep, though the Werelupes sad growls could still be heard. At that point, none of the two neopets had any idea whether it was day or night. It seemed like night was an abiding part of that place.
A scary distant circus-like tune echoed through the trees from the southern part of the woods. Jex was amazed at that place's 'halloweenish' aspect. The two neopets were living things they'd never once dreamed to live, and though adventuring yourself in Neopia can be quite fun, at certain times it can be very, very scary. Jex didn't seem to mind anymore, though, while Lunia was reprehending herself for having even suggested choosing to cross that place over exploring the pink wonders of Faerieland. "Well, I guess it's a little too late now," she thought to herself.
The neopets walked around the area, visited haunted castles and ate spooky food, which Jex loved, but Lunia found disgusting. They visited some stalls on the deserted fairground and agreed they were all very suspicious. They even visited the Haunted Marketplace in hope for finding a specific plushie, but failed miserably.
"Look, Jex! Are you seeing that Halloween Acara? What do you think of that color? I think it's very interesting. I mean, it's nothing compared to the Maraquan standards, but I think I'd look very pretty like that. Probably even better than her!"
"If you're really willing to take my opinions into consideration, I think you're perfectly fine as a yellow Acara, now, if you really want to paint yourself Maraquan, go for it. Might as well paint yourself Invisible! It'll look way prettier, that's for sure," Jex said, fed up with the situation.
"You really have some distorted opinions on neopet's beauty, Jex," Lunia replied, perplexed with the Shoyru's beliefs.
"Whatever you say. Hey, where are we exactly? I don't remember seeing this tower," Jex asked.
"We should try to ask for some directions. I most certainly don't want to get lost in this place," Lunia said. "Hm, that tree over there seems quite smart. Maybe we could try talking to it," she suggested, as she pointed to a red-eyed tree which enormous brain appeared to be pulsating.
They approached the tree only to find out its brain was even huger than it seemed from where they first saw it. As they got closer, they could feel an atmosphere of ancient wisdom surrounding them and pulling them closer. Jex was the first to step ahead, facing the tree in awe.
"Kneel..." said the tree. He kneeled before it. When he felt brave enough, he started asking the tree for some guidance, but he soon got interrupted.
"Quiet, fool! I'm the one asking the questions here! I can't help you with your woeful queries! Only come to me if you're willing to fetch me some useful information! Now leave!" the Brain Tree screamed with a loud, monstrous voice.
The neopets fled as fast as they could.
"This place is awful. Let's leave!" Lunia whimpered as she caught her breath.
"We'll find our way!"
Lunia and Jex eventually came across the Gypsy Camp, where they were welcomed by a jolly Wocky.
"Oh, welcome, young travelers! It seems like you've come from afar, and faced many dangers! You can rest in our camp, so you'll wake up feeling strong to continue your journey!" she said, with a big smile on her face.
They both felt like they weren't in a position to refuse such a gentle invitation. They accepted to spend the night and rest. A good night's sleep never hurt anyone, after all...
"GAAAAHH!!!" Lunia screamed as she woke up.
"What is it? What's wrong?" Jex asked from the other side of the tent, as he woke up abruptly.
"MEEPITS!! GHOST MEEPITS EVERYWHEREEE!" she answered.
"Go back to sleep, it was just a nightmare..."
"BUT IT WAS SO REA--"
"Shhh, go back to sleep, Lunia. It was just a bad dream. Tomorrow will be tough, try to rest a bit," said the tired Shoyru.
"B-But... but they wanted juice..." she said, as she began to fall asleep again. "and they were dancin... zz... zzzz..."
When the two woke up, they left again, in search of the way out, only to find a spooky path that ended up taking them away from the gypsy camp. The path crossed the woods, but took them to what seemed to be a little posh province. From the shop signs they soon found out it was called Neovia.
Wandering again, as usual, Lunia and Jex visited a lot of stores. Lunia was enjoying herself way more that Jex, who'd rather be facing ghosts back at the Haunted Woods than waiting for Lunia to try on all the ascot hats she could find.
"Come on, that's enough. That's the fiftieth one you've tried! They all look equally ridiculous!"
"You are such a party-pooper, Jex!"
"Come on, remember that quest of yours who brought us both here on the first place?"
"What about it? Don't worry. We have time. We'll continue on our quest after we leave this creepy town."
"Shall we at least try to, then?"
Lunia rolled her eyes and put away the hat she was trying on. Admiring herself one last time on the store's wooden-edged mirror, she exited the place. "Party pooper..." she mumbled, while purposely hitting Jex as she walked out.
After asking an elegant lady Gnorbu for directions, the two neopets managed to find a way out of those woods. After walking for some time, they started noticing light coming from outside invading the woods. That's when they noticed they were near the end of that dark and haunted place. It may have taken them longer than they'd like, but soon enough, they were back again at the beautiful green meadow that filled their hearts with happiness once more.
"Do you think we're going to make it to the Neopia Central safely, Lunia?"
"I do. I really believe we'll get there. Look up, Jex!"
Jex did what the Acara said, facing a beautiful starry sky above his head.
"See those stars?" she said while she grabbed his hand again to direct it at the sky, pointing at the stars for him. "Can you guess what it is?"
"Ummm, a kite, maybe?"
"It's a bow and arrow, silly head!"
"Can you be more specific?"
"That's 'The Hunter', King Altador's constellation."
"I see!" Jex said, astonished with the celestial night view beauty. "I envy your weird constellation finding talent. King Altador, huh?"
"I think he's watching over us... don't you feel it?"
"Well, not exactly. Sorry, perhaps I'm just tired, but I do think the King is pretty busy at the Council."
"Well, I have faith in it. And we made it this far, right? We can make it to the Neopia Central!"
"Sometimes I wish I was as much of an optimist as you, Lunia."
A couple more days passed, Lunia and Jex had walked incessantly, and even found some neopets on their way. A rushing Quiggle who apparently was late for a picnic at the Haunted Woods crossed their ways on a raining morning.
"I haven't seen them since we finished school! And that was almost a week ago!" he said.
As the Quiggle left, Lunia couldn't help but comment:
"What a place to have a picnic with friends!"
"Well, perhaps they're the meal!"
A group of in-battle hurt neopets also crossed their way, and apparently they were going to Faerieland.
After a couple more hours of walking, camping and walking more, Lunia and Jex reached Kiko Lake, where they stopped by to rest for a bit, play by the lake and have some fresh juice. After recovering from such a long trip, they both felt prepared to head to their final destination: The Neopia Central. As they left Kiko Lake, they felt like they would come to see the Neopia Central ahead of them at just about any time. When that time finally came, they could barely trust their eyes. A big, beautiful and colorful city was just in front of them, some miles away, but still visible from the distance. They could even spot the long everlasting rainbow crossing the sea from where they were.
"Whoa! I can't believe it! I almost forgot how beautiful this place was," Jex started.
"And I've never seen it before! It's such a big place!"
"Is it really the Central of Neopia? Shouldn't there be a giant hamburger just about there?!" he asked, pointing to the city.
Lunia stared at him in confusion. "I hope you're just kidding..."
"Well, what are we waiting for? Let's speed up!"
Before the Acara could finish her sentence, Jex departed flying over to the city as fast as he could.
"Hey, you come back here now, you cheater! Play fair! I'm going to catch you!" Lunia shouted at the flying Shoyru.
"We'll see, haha!" he screamed in between his laughs.
As Lunia tried to run as fast as she could to surpass the Shoyru, the sun began to set...
To be continued...