Pride Goes A Long Way
The sky was gray. The streets were gray. No corner of Shitona
Town wasn't gray. It's inhabitants were not only gray by looks but by emotion
too. There were drained of happiness and joy once felt by all. No one new ever
ventured to this village. Could there be a duller place to live? Could there be
a duller day in life you had to live?
Shitona Town, landlocked by many other lively,
bustling towns. Shitona Town, full of despair and sadness. Shitona Town, where
the gray paint brush was discovered. A homely village plagued by seemingly eternal
sadness. In this desolate town, lived Shellia.
Every morning, Shellia woke up to the sunless
sky. She'd look out the window to see the stormy clouds brewing. The continual
rain added to the dreariness. She'd look in the mirror at endless flaws. Her
matted gray fur. Her ears that were no where near perky. The circles under hers
eyes. A typical gray Lupe. Stereotypically.
Shellia longed to be free of all burdens, the
greatest being imprisoned in this forsaken town. She was uneducated of all the
great wonders outside of Shitona. She couldn't imagine a color besides gray.
She had never seen the shining sun providing energy and life. Or the stars giving
second chances and hope.
It was a typical night. Shellia sat in her room,
laying on her back on the floor. She thought of Faerieland. The way she understood
it, Faerieland was a myth. It seemed only to be a surreal fantasy. It chewed
away at her insides more and more every day. "Why can't I just speak up?" her
heart screamed. "It seems to be the right thing, to stay the same, stay loyal,,"
her mind yelled. She sighed.
"Loyal to what? Being miserable?" Shellia said.
She went to the window. A gentle breeze ruffled her hair. She looked down upon
her town in every possible way. She looked out into the gray sky.
"Huh?" she said. She squinted into the sky leaning
out her window. A small twinkling light was high in the sky. There was no moon,
but Shellia knew it was a star. She clasped her hands together and truly felt
hope and happiness.
"I wish my town could see you little star," Shellia
prayed. She watched the star until clouds swept over it, masking the beauty.
She climbed into bed thinking of things to come.
The next day was like all the rest. Outside it
was gloomy. The sun was sure to never shine. It was really just a pitiful town,
but Shellia had hope. If her dreams could be shared and her prayers answered,
Shitona Town would be free of it's curse.
"I- I know this sounds stupid," Shellia said
shakily. When anyone talked there voices trembled. All was usually quiet.
"Listen Xentri. I- I feel like I'm trapped. We
can't live our lives this way," she declared.
"Shell- I don't understand," said Xentri, a Cybunny.
A sad miserable one.
"Xentri, please. When I say 'we', I mean all
of Shitona. We all have to move on, see bigger and better things. What's the
point of living if all you see is sadness!?" she cried.
"Stop trying to tell me all this junk. We aren't
the future of tomorrow Shell, okay? Just leave it alone," Xentri said, in the
familiar monotonous tone. Shellia sat there paralyzed in disbelief.
"Fine," she said brushing him away with a glance,
"Fine Xentri, fine," she said walking away. "I don't know about him, but I am
definitely doing something. This isn't right," she thought.
The day after that, Shellia seemed to have more
hope than before. Her ears perked up whenever she dreamed of a colorful life.
A life of true color not just gray. And true emotion not just sad. A real life.
It made Xentri enthusiastic as well.
"Shellia, I am getting better vibes about this
idea," Xentri admitted. "I mean, I want to change," he said. It made Shellia's
eyes sparkle like the star light.
"N- now you understand Xen. We have to raise
everyone's spirit," Shellia said with dignity.
It was on the lonely playground where Shellia
and Xentri gathered friends who gathered friends who gathered friends. Shellia
stood upon a creaky wooden swing. She looked down at all the gray faces watching
"I- I- I'm tired of dreaming," Shellia stuttered.
"All of us- we-we should..." she trailed off.
Xentri stood up and continued,
"Everyone! Shellia wants us all to live happier
lives! I am sure not one of you can tell me you're grateful for this life!"
Xentri said taking pride with his friend. There was agree all around. Shellia's
pride overwhelmed her.
"Dreams can come true! If you believe..." she
declared. Everyone's voice grew louder and even more cheerful. It was a grand
day for Shitona's public. Soon their lives would be better. Soon Shellia's prayers
would be answered.
Then next day was even more spectacular. More
and more Neopets bustled about the streets. More emotion was visible. Shellia
knew her plan was the talk of the town. The town was still gray, but their prides
were full of every color.
Soon enough it was the last straw. Shellia could
bear it no more. She was going out to see the sights outside of Shitona. She
was going to start fixing up her town. She was going to take away the darkness
and make Shitona shine again with the radiance of the sun.
"I'm- so- close," she said. She was footsteps
away from being out of the shadows and into the sun. She walked slowly out of
the forest from which she came. It was the fastest way to Neopia Central from
her dismal town. She shielded her eyes and stepped into the glorious sun. It
was truly an unforgettable day in Shellia's life.
Usuls and Chias and many other species walked
the streets handsomely painted many colors. She walked to a pearly white fountain
trickling crystal blue water. She cupped some water in her hands and drank the
crisp liquid. It refreshed and energized her. It made her that much more hopeful.
She then remembered her plan. She walked around and her eyes lit up when she
say a hardware store.
She bought beautiful paints to color their town.
She bought posters to hang all around. She had been saving Neopoints forever
hoping to make a difference, and now was her chance.
"I'm just wondering, what'll you be doing with
all of this?" said the rainbow Kiko at the register.
"I'm going to," she searched for the words, "beautify
my town!" she said proudly. She smiled and walked out of the stores. She decided
it was time to go back. As she headed back to the forest, she spotted a tattered
cardboard box that seemed to glow. It had a faded ribbon tied in a bow around
it. Out of sheer curiosity Shellia opened the box. It was rainbow paint brush.
Shellia traveled back to her town that much faster,
with such happiness she was sure to burst. As she ran down the street the people
all around gaped at her. She grinned pleasurably and saw Xentri.
"Xentri! Xentri! I did it! I'm going to change
all our lives forever!!" she cheered. Onlookers listened, their eyes lighting
"I'm proud Shellia."
Shellia painted her house a bright green. She
hanged posters of faeries on fences and lamp posts. Spirits brightened. Some
of the clouds seemed to move away and a few rays of sun peeked out from behind
the remaining gray.
"We all have to go!" Shellia declared. Now there
were more Neopets willing to venture out. So they went. Shellia lead them out
of the shadowy forest into the free sunshine of Neopia Central. They bought
paint and colorful furniture and everyday thing but in color! They even had
trucks to bring the heavy things back to their town. It was a grand day.
"Yes! Yes!" Shellia screamed as she stood on
a large pedestal in the center of town. The sun emerged completely. There was
no gray in sight. Smiling faces warmed Shellia's heart. Sun light warmed her
"You proved magic is real Shellia. If it weren't
for you, well... no one would have ever spoke up," Xentri said as he and Shellia
watched the pink and orange sunset. She told him,
"It was all because of one sparkling star...
through all that gray..."