A Princess and Her Struggles
Her petpet , a royal Anubis, mewed with delight and dropped the toy on her paws for the hundredth time. The small petpet made a happy purring sound and rubbed against her side. She picked up the toy and threw it across the yard. It bounced a few times on the rough sandy ground creating little dust clouds. The petpet yipped with delight and ran after it, kicking more sand into the air.
As much as she loved her petpet, she was tired of the repetitiveness of her life. She was reading old fairy-tale scrolls in her favorite garden; A small private one designed by the finest architects and gardeners who came all the way from Shenkuu to build it as a gift of thanks for her. The garden contained only the most beautiful Lost Desert flowers. The walls surrounding the garden were tall and Desert Albats sat on each corner of it. They were trained to sense danger and would squawk loudly if there was ever a sign of it. They were also trained to make sure she didn’t escape, and it made her feel like a prisoner in her own home. Before architects from Shenkuu built it, they had gone through a terrible drought and were at risk of starving. As a response, she forced her father to send the citizens of Shenkuu a huge supply of Pleto Melons.
Her royal Anubis returned the ball to her once again. He wagged his tail, jumped onto her lap, and licked her cheek. The petpet had an instant connection with her when they first met. It was like he could sense her distress. She had only just recently received the sweet petpet as a gift from a tiny nearby village. She had gone out of her way to make sure their new well was built after the old one fell apart in a devastating sandstorm. Her father wasn’t so willing to help them. He wanted to focus on making sure none of the more profitable cities and villages were damaged in the sandstorm. Her father was a good king, but he cared too much about Neopoints and making sure the The Lost Desert remained a rich land. He often overlooked the poor and less fortunate subjects of his kingdom.
She sighed and glanced around the stunning garden. She felt undeserving of it. So many Neopians would do anything to be in her place. She was princess and next heir to the throne, but despite all of that, she dreamed of a life with more thrill and adventure. She wanted to be like the Space Faerie who stopped Dr. Sloth from taking over Neopia many times, or the famous Hannah who has explored many ancient Lost Desert tombs and horrifying old pirate caves.
She was fed up with all the boring court meetings with all the other royals in Lost Desert. She wanted to stop being treated like a spoiled celebrity everywhere she went. She wanted to live a normal life with peace and quiet away from all the crazy demands of the royal palace. She hated how everyone was always obsessing over her looks and making sure she looked perfect in the public’s eyes. She hated how she could almost never change her father’s mind about being more caring for his people and caring less about Neopoints. Her rage was building as she sat there. Her mind was racing. She had enough.
She picked up her petpet who was now napping by her side, and carried him into her bed chambers, her beautiful garden just outside it. She set the now yawning Anubis onto her bed and got to work. She knew what she had to do. She packed a map and some Neopoints in a knapsack. Hidden in the back of her drawers was a disguise she had been working on for a week now. She put it on and pulled the hood up. It covered her face and the dusky blue fabrics made her look like a common citizen.
She was going to have her own adventures now. Her heart fluttered with glee. She picked up her little purple Anubis, looked him in the eyes. “We’re going to go on an adventure and you have to stay very quiet until we’re out of the palace, okay?” she whispered.
The little Anubis replied with a quiet bark, squirmed out of her arms and ran back out to the garden. He returned with the little toy they had been playing with earlier. She smiled and put the toy into her knapsack, alongside the Neopoints and map.
She opened her bed chamber’s door and prepared to sneak across the palace to freedom. She took one last look at her bed chambers and garden. The wind blew her sheer white curtains gently and the sun had set now. The moon cast a blue glow on her entire room. She wished she could give her life to a more promising Neopian, one who would actually appreciate the rich and spoiled life she lived.
She turned and headed out to her new life, tiptoeing down the long hallways to avoid the patrolling guards. She was no stranger to sneaking out at night, her loyal Royal Anubis followed her movement perfectly. The hardest part of her entire escape was nearing. The throne room held the only entrance to the entire palace, also the only exit and heavily guarded. She figured she could create a diversion by throwing a vase and sending the guards away from her escape exit.
As she neared the throne room, she heard a voice coming from it and froze. Her father was meeting with a group, and she managed to overhear him in the middle of his speech.
“…due to the circumstances, I will personally send my top investigators to the merchants and make sure the thieves are caught and their valuables are returned. I expect the merchants to pay twice their taxes this month for their foolishness. It is entirely their fault for leaving such a large shipment unguarded!” his deep voiced boomed.
She peeked around the corner at the group.
A handsome, soft-spoken male Lupe replied “Your highness, forgive me for asking; What about the food the thieves burned? That was over three months of food supply for the village. Those Neopians will starve!”
She knew immediately that her father wouldn’t be happy with the Lupe.
His face wrinkled in disgust and he yelled “SILENCE! Those villagers would have their food if they weren’t senseless enough to hire brainless merchants who don’t even know how to guard their own-“
Her little petpet growled and she could feel her emotions boiling.
“Stop!” she yelled at her father, surprising herself with her recklessness.
She set down her knapsack and whispered to the Anubis to take it back to her chambers. The petpet grabbed the knapsack and ran off.
She turned and walked towards the group now bowing before her. Her father stood with his arms crossed looking irritated.
She took a deep breath “Father, you need to stop acting like the smaller villages aren’t important. They are our people and we need to take care of them. They would do anything we ask of them. They have fought in many of our wars willingly and they faithfully do as we ask of them. We need to send them food shipments and Neopoints to help them get back what they lost. They are not accountable for the carelessness of those merchants. Please father.”
His face softened and he closed his eyes, as if he was remembering something. He opened his eyes and spoke “Very well. My daughter is right. We shall take care of that village as they are our loyal subjects. Let this be heard throughout out lands, your Princess will now be attending the court as a royal advisor. Your problems are now hers too.”
She was shocked at her father’s words. She would be an advisor to her subjects alongside him. The last time someone besides her father was an advisor was when her mother… She pushed those thoughts out of her head quickly. Now was not the time to be sad. The group of Neopians bowed and thanked them as they left the throne room. The handsome Lupe lingered for a few seconds in the doorway, smiling and making eye contact with her. She felt herself blush slightly.
Her father turned to her and spoke softly. “You’re just like your mother. Sympathetic and considerate of her people, although she was also a tad hotheaded. You will make a great Queen of The Lost Desert when the time comes.” He had a smile on his face while his eyes looked sad. He turned away from her and left the room.
She suddenly felt very changed. Just minutes ago she was planning her great escape out of the palace and life of royalty. Now, she felt like her people needed her. Maybe this was where her destiny stood. Maybe adventures weren’t always about fighting the bad Neopians like the Space Faerie did or finding treasure like Hannah. She started walking back towards her bed chambers.