So Much Lunch
The gears in Tazmir's head hummed to life as he woke from his slumber.
“There,” Osmious said as he patted him on the back, “You're back online. And I've installed all the latest items into your database.”
Tazmir quickly scanned through the new information. Sure enough, he realized he knew 10 more items than when he entered sleep mode. Tazmir felt a little proud to be on top of the latest developments in Neopia. No one knew more items than him, not even his genius creator, Osmious.
Tazmir's cooling fans whirred as he remembered why Osmious built him. The story was slightly embarrassing, and even though Osmious had never told him directly, he'd managed to piece it together from passing comments and a suspiciously useless fire brush plushie that was hidden in one of the toolboxes. While buying supplies for his paintbrush experiments, Osmious had gotten impatient and careless and had been tricked into buying a fire brush plushie instead of a fire paint brush. Out of his shame, Osmious had designed Tazmir with the finest item identification technology out there, that rivalled even the Shop Wizard. (Personally, Tazmir thought he was superior to the Shop Wizard in every way, especially since he even helped with faerie quests.)
Tazmir's job was to run errands for Osmious, and when he was finished, he got to help Osmious with his latest invention or experiment. Tazmir quite enjoyed his job, and he prided himself on his 100 successful purchases. Granted, only one shopkeeper had ever tried to con him, but he'd seen through it in a heartbeat. Tazmir was convinced his item identification system was flawless.
“Alright, Tazmir,” Osmious said, “here's your list for today. Do you have our Neopoints on you?”
Tazmir nodded as he grabbed the shopping list. It was a little longer than usual, but that was fine. He enjoyed discovering the more obscure items he knew about, and the longer the list, the more opportunity he had to do just that. Tazmir put the shopping list away for safe keeping, waved goodbye, and headed for the marketplace.
The first few items on the list were easy. Some he didn't even have to buy, as there were plenty of them lying around at the Money Tree. (Like Old Rotten Left Boot... Yuck, Osmious! Why would you even want that?) But when Tazmir arrived at the bottom of the list, he realized there was a problem.
“Lunch? There's no item called lunch!” Tazmir double and triple checked his databases, but like the first time, he came back with no exact matches. He felt sweaty, and robots didn't even sweat! Was his database flawed? Did he not know about some newly released item? But Osmious had just updated him this morning... Tazmir decided to seek the help of one he never thought he would ask. The Shop Wizard.
While Osmious had to manually update Tazmir's databases, the Shop Wizard automatically knew about new items in Neopia. Even though Tazmir felt he was better at identifying objects than the Shop Wizard, he had to begrudgingly admit that the Shop Wizard always knew about them first. Bah, by some sort of ridiculous magic, no less.
Tazmir hung his head as he approached his rival. “Lunch, identical to my phrase, please.” Tazmir couldn't meet the wizard's eyes as he searched. He wondered how he would tell Osmious that he'd failed to identify his first item. Slowly, Tazmir realized the wizard was taking a while.
The Shop Wizard spoke. “Searching for ... I did not find anything.”
Tazmir leapt with joy before he could finish speaking. He ran off and chuckled at the fact that the Shop Wizard probably never met someone so excited to not find their item. “I'm still better than you,” Tamzir mumbled under his breath, unable to keep the smile off his face.
Halfway to the marketplace, Tazmir stopped dead in his tracks. Aw, hex nuts, I still have to find this “Lunch” for Osmious, he realized.
Tazmir was stuck on what to do. At least the problem wasn't his own fault, but that meant it was user error (c'mon Osmious). Tazmir wasn't designed to interpret vague descriptions. Now he had to guess at what Osmious meant. He scanned through all the items containing lunch in his database.
Alright, I can probably eliminate any unbuyables. We don't have the Neopoints for that, Tazmir thought. But there were still quite a lot of cheap “lunch” items. Tazmir began to sort them into categories. There were lunch boxes, food lunches, lunch themed wearables, and lunch themed books. Hmm... Well maybe if I buy one in each category, one of them will be able to substitute for what he actually wanted.
After some deliberation, Tazmir decided to buy Blue Cybunny Lunch Box, Lunch Hot Dog, Lunch Box Collector Book, and Grundo Lunch Lady Hairnet. There, that ought to cover any sort of experiment he wants to run, he thought. But as Tazmir was leaving, he was struck with what a small sampling size of all the lunch items he had. Statistically, there was a very slim chance of him having what Osmious wanted. So Tazmir grabbed a few more lunch items on his way out. He only stopped when he realized he couldn't carry more items with him, but he still felt he didn't have the item Osmious was looking for.
Tazmir's engine pounded in his chest as he approached the workshop. He couldn't bear to tell Osmious he'd failed, and even worse, let him down. He took the Lunch Hot Dog out of his bag of items. Out of all the individual items, it seemed to be the most likely. Osmious particularly loved experimenting on things that were messy, and food was much messier than a brand new lunch box.
Osmious looked up from his work. “Oh, good, you're back. I was starting to get worried. Boy, am I starving! Oh, that hot dog looks perfect,” Osmious exclaimed, as he grabbed the hot dog from Tazmir and began munching on it.
Tazmir breathed a sigh of relief. He had gotten the right item after all! “It's Lunch Hot Dog, actually,” Tazmir began, eager to teach Osmious the importance of specificity, but Osmious cut him off.
”You know, with it taking so long, I had some time to think. And I realized that putting lunch on the shopping list with the other items I wanted might confuse you. I was worried you might think I was referring to some specific item called lunch and not the meal. But I can see I was worried for nothing! This hot dog is great!” Osmious wiped some of the ketchup from his mouth as he finished the meal.
Oh. Oh dear. That was not what Tazmir had expected Osmious to say. “Haha, that would be very silly,” Tazmir laughed, not finding the situation funny at all. “What did you think I was going to do? Come back with every lunch themed item in Neopia?” He felt his speakers rise an octave in pitch as he said this.
”To be honest, I was kind of expecting that! But you're right, that's silly. I'm so glad you understand.”
Tazmir cringed and laughed nervously, suddenly aware of how visible the shopping bags were behind him. “Right. And on a completely unrelated note, do you think we can upgrade our shop? I have some totally not lunch themed items I need to sell.”