Voice of the Neopian Pound Circulation: 91,831,644 Issue: 177 | 11th day of Awakening, Y7
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TC Explains Valentine's Day


by tambourine_chimp

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The Lupe's exaggerated yawn woke me up, causing me to moan and blink away the remains of sleepiness. Kojak only yawned like that when he had been asked to explain something which he was too lazy to try. Pulling on some clothes, I wondered what and who it could've been that had caused it this time.

     "Oh, you're awake, TC, sorry if I woke you," my glowing Lupe said in a tone that told me he had hoped his loud noises would wake me up all along. "Here, while you're up and about, could you tend to chill_o for me? He wants to know about Valentine's Day, but I told him you'd know more about it then me…plus, I already spent my last free afternoon explaining how baby Neopets are made."

     "I refuse to believe it took a whole afternoon to tell your robot brother that babies result from a special Paint Brush brought from Fyora's Hidden Tower," I told him skeptically, eyebrow raised as I watched the canine squirm around uncomfortably.

     "Yeah, well you see, Chill insisted on knowing the subject from all angles, so…"

     "So?" I asked him, tapping my feet impatiently, guessing what was coming.

     "So I spun him a yarn about the Weewoos and the Buzzers!" Kojak blurted out hurriedly, staring down at his feet with shame. Then, in a bid for self-defense, he added, "You know what he's like, TC! Him and his stupid 'Memory Upgrading Sessions'…"

     Two things here people. Firstly, you may remember that Kojak referred to chill_o as a snow Grundo back in one of his mysteries. Since then I had finally got the full map to the secret Laboratory, with which I had my poor alien Neopet zapped every single day; most of the times chill_o said that he felt the results were good, sometimes he felt worse for wear. The first time I noticed a change was when he turned into a mutant of his species.

     Now, this was great enough, but then I felt hey! The ray turned my pet into a different color; it won't do that again for a long time!

     Yes I, as many other had before me, fell to the sinister randomness of the evil-minded Lab Ray, and the very next day chill_o turned into a robot, his name making even less sense then before (chill, snow, get it?).

     Secondly (yes, all the above was part of the first thing), anyone that has a robot Grundo will know that it will not learn much from reading books, as it's visual receptors aren't up to scratch. No, robots learn much more and much better by spoken word information, or 'Memory Upgrading Sessions,' as Chill calls them.

     Sighing, I moved into the kitchen to fix me up a bowl of my favorite cereal - oats and brown sugar, a simple combination, but nonetheless tasty to the extreme. "Where is he then?"

     "In his Living Quarters undergoing Maintenance," Kojak answered sarcastically, causing me to scowl into to bowl of oats floating in brown milk (it wasn't curdled! The brown sugar just melted, I swear! Geez, just because I have a name with the word 'chimp' in it, you think I'm an animal?). For some reason, Kojak thought it clever to use terms from old science fiction books he'd read when speaking about the robot. What he meant, of course, was that Chill was in his bedroom oiling his joints.

     "I'll be up as soon as I've finished this bowl," I told him, taking a large spoonful of the delicious substance and eating it slowly. I paused, licking my lips. "Then again," I added, "maybe he'd rather come to me? I haven't eaten much recently, and I could do with a few more helpings…"

     "Whatever," Kojak muttered darkly, shooting up the stairs to tell the Grundo the news.

     I don't know, sometimes I wonder why I continue to allow Kojak to be a detective. He's hardly ever home and when he is he thinks he's smarter then anyone else. But, as he himself pointed out, his career had advantages for us both. He got extra NP (when he got paid, which seemed to be never) and I got stories to submit to the Neopian Times.

     Sometime later I heard the faint whirr-clunking that signaled Chill's approach and, sure enough, he entered the room soon afterwards.

     "Kojak told me you would be assisting in my Memory Upgrading Session today, TC," he said in the monotonous tone he'd adopted ever since his transformation. "Is this true?"

     "Sure, buddy, we can't start whenever you like…"

     "I would like to start straight away, TC."

     "I meant to say, whenever you like after I've finished my breakfast," I told him, well into me fourth bowlful of brown-sugared oaty goodness. I hurriedly finished it, washing it down with a glass of milk (hey, you couldn't have too much of a good thing, and anyways, I need to wash away the gritty feeling the sugar left behind), before clearing them away and sitting back down. "Okay, ask away."

     "I would like to know, in as much details as possible, about Valentine's Day," the robot said plainly, pronouncing each word so perfectly he'd have been an instant hit with any Drama group if it wasn't for the total lack of emotion. "What is all the fuss about, exactly?"

     "Ah, well you see, Valentine's Day is a very special day of the year…quite like a birthday, but for everyone." I began, whilst in my mind I was cursing Kojak for dumping this responsibility on me. "Valentine's Day - or V-Day, as I shall refer to it from now on - is for people to celebrate their love and admiration for someone close to them. And by love I don't mean only love-love, but also the love of friendship. Even friends are brought together by a strong attraction; otherwise they wouldn't feel like being friends. For example, what attracts you the most in a person?"

     "A magnet?" the robot Grundo asked hesitantly, and though his face couldn't really show it, I knew he was trying to look confused.

     "Let's just assume that for this one conversation you're not a robot, or anything mechanical, okay?"

     "Alright…"

     "Right, so what attracts you most to your friends, what makes them appeal to you the most?" I asked again, this time re-phrasing my question slightly.

     My pet seemed to think about this for a while before answering. "Well, some of them make me think, some I can hold intelligent conversations with…and some make me laugh."

     "Wait a minute," I muttered quickly, "you can laugh?"

     "When I know I'm required to laugh, I try to, yes. But it is not an automatic reaction."

     "Not like the rest of you then!" I quipped, trying to see if this were true. The Grundo just stared at me with his best blank expression. "You know," I explained, feeling uneasy now, "automatic, you? Automaton being another word for robots? I was a play on words, a pun."

     "I see, I think…can we please get back to the subject of…V-Day? This joke is not helping my Memory Upgrading Session."

     "Fine, fine…so, you know you get attracted to different kinds of people for different reasons. Why then, must there always be a best friend? What makes a best friend special from all your others? Who's your best friend, Chill?"

     "My back-up generator," the robot answered instantly.

     "Let's try to think outside of your metallic proverbial box, okay? Besides, you know what I mean; your mouth slit is tilted into a smirk…right, on with the V-Day explanation. V-Day is really just a day to show someone close or special to you how much you care and appreciate them. Now, depending on the level of love or friendship you have for them, you would go about the day in a variety of ways. A rose for love and affection is probably the most common, but there are other ways, too! Are you getting all of this, pal?"

     "Yes, it is very interesting, please continue," Chill asked very quickly, sitting still and patiently, his yellow bolt between his antennae crackling softly as the information was inputted and store in his mind.

     "Okay, well where was I…oh yes! The other ways to display affection! Well, for a best friend you could give them a card and a present; make it something you know they really like. But don't go too far or they'll take it the wrong way! For instance, for Kojak I'd get a book on Detective work and procedures, whereas for Grim_Reepaneo I was thinking about a brand new scythe, and as for Chimp," I added, referring of course, to my mutant Chia who had been born a Mynci, "well, I don't know what I'd get for him…maybe a promise that Kojak won't be tempted to eat him."

     "And for me…?" Chill asked slowly, his emotionless voice making it almost impossible to decipher the question as genuine or just greedy.

     I was the one not to hesitate this time. "Why, a new can of oil, of course! Or maybe even a free buffing session at the Grooming Parlour - get those metal surfaces really gleaming. You see," I continue, deciding to get back on track, "as I said before, V-Day is basically like a universal birthday, depending on how you feel for people. You can either shower them with gifts or take them on a trip, it's up to you. Is that enough for you?"

     "Indeed, yes, thank you TC," my Grundo nodded, the crackling of the bolt dimming even more as he powered-down his information intake. "Just one more question," he added as I made to go about my day, "just what part do the Weewoos and the Buzzers have in the process of Neopets being painted baby? Are the brushes from the Hidden Tower made out of special Weewoo feathers? Is the handle made out of the arms and legs of a snow Buzzer?"

     "Kojak was just fooling around," I laughed, patting the robot Grundo on his shoulder socket, "he thought you were being too inquisitive and didn't know what else to say. Weewoos and Buzzers having nothing to do with making Neopets into babies."

     "Oh," Chill murmured softly, "shame…I'll have to delete all that, won't I?"

     "I'm afraid so," I told him with a faint smile. "Makes you laugh, though, doesn't it, that he actually thought you believe that…"

     "No, it doesn't," Chill answered as he clunked his way into the living room, "I can't laugh, remember?"

The End

 
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