"Bye!" the red Gelert said, waving joyously to her friends
as they walked home. "I'll see you tomorrow, okay?"
The group said various things, but on the most
part it was nothing more than a, "Yeah, see you tomorrow, Riih!" and a simple
wave. The Gelert grinned and turned the corner.
"Can I be seen yet?" someone muttered angrily.
The red Gelert sighed.
Out from the bushes sprang another red Gelert.
One could tell with the naked eye that these two Gelerts weren't just two similar
looking Gelerts walking along. No, these two were more than that…they were twins.
The second Gelert's jade eyes flicked dangerously
as she rubbed the friendship necklace Riih had given her that hung around her
neck. She had given her sister had an identical one. "How long is this going
to last? How long are you going to pretend I don't exist?"
The first Gelert sighed and reached into her
schoolbag to re-apply blush. "Now Rit," said Riih. "You know I don't like to
have to hide you when I go to school but…I can't let the girls know I'm a twin!
I mean, there are hardly any twins in Neopia…people stare at us when we walk
down the street, for Fyora's sake!" She closed the compact, stuffed it into
the bag, and started at her sister with the same colored eyes. "I hate being
a twin…you know that. It's nothing against you."
Rit chuckled. "Oh yeah, nothing against me.
You just make me hide in the bushes every day when we walk home so your new
friends don't see me."
Riih smiled clearly un-detecting Rit's sarcasm.
"Rit, it's like you're reading my mind!" With a grin she hugged her sister and
pranced home eagerly.
* * * * *
"Well," said Eri, as she finished taking her
noodles from the bowl and took a seat at the kitchen table. She looked at all
of her Neopets, clearly apprehensive. "How was school today, everyone?" She
smiled at her pets. She was a short character, with a lanky frame and hybrid
light brown eyes. She quietly lifted her fork and started to eat while listening
to her pets.
"Well," said a Christmas Kougra, putting down
her fork. "Today, in gym class, I scored the winning point in the game we were
playing. The gym teacher was so pleased he said, 'Ana, I am so happy to see
you've improved so much!'" she giggled with self-assurance. "And I passed that
Algebra test I was cramming for."
A blue Lupe looked thoughtful. "I got an A on
my short story that I had to write last week."
Eri smiled. "Excellent, excellent, Muti and
Ana!" She turned to the two Gelerts. "Girls, how are things going for you?"
Eri's eyes darkened significantly. She had noticed Rit becoming increasingly
quieter, and she feared that something was going on that she knew not about.
Rit rubbed the fur on the top of her head with
a paw and concentrated. "Umm…nothing happened. It was a boring day," she concluded.
"Well, lots of things happened to me, today!"
Riih burst. "First off, I made a ton of new friends, who knew so many intelligible
people could be in one solitary school, and I passed my science class today
and played hardball at recess with everyone and I found all my classes okay
"Nice to know you had a good day, Riih. But
breathe before you keel over," Muti said with a sly grin. Rit and Ana giggled,
and Riih only frowned. Eri sighed and rolled her eyes.
Dinner was finished, the plates cleared. Riih
went upstairs to sulk in indignity while Muti went outside, snickering. Ana
bounced up to her room to paint her nails crimson. Sighing, Rit decided to go
after her sister.
They entered the tiny room they shared. Rit
eagerly clambered up to her top bunk in the bunk beds the twins share. Riih
flopped down on her lower bunk, eying a Geometry textbook warily.
"Hey Rit!" Riih said eagerly. "Look at this!"
she passed a magazine clipping up to her sister.
Rit examined the clipping. "Looks like a Spotted
"Yeah…it's a nice look, isn't it?" Riih looked
excited. "And guess what? I'm going to look like that!"
"What?" asked Rit, incredulous. She couldn't
have heard what she was certain she just heard…there must be some mistake! She
and Riih had always been red, and she was hoping that would never, ever change.
"Well, Eri said that once she finishes saving
for a few other things, if I help save a little as well, we'll be able to buy
me a Spotted Paint Brush, and then I can look dashing and sophisticated!" she
struck a pose.
"Riih!" Rit cried, her eyes widening and fear
whacking her chest like a mallet. "Riih, you can't do this! We said we'd always
be red together!"
"When we were what, three or four?" Riih scorned.
She took hold of her sister's paws. "Rit, we're growing up. And the group I'm
in are all painted pets and…I kind of want to fit in with them."
"So," Rit said, her eyes narrowing. "You're
going to change yourself for them? Paint yourself just to fit in?" Tears of
rage boiled in her eyes and her voice grew higher, as it often did when she
was upset. "I didn't know your stupid friends meant so much to you! But if that's
the way it had to be, than so be it!" She ripped the necklace off her neck,
breaking the chain. "Here," she yelled angrily. "Take back the stupid necklace!
I guess it doesn't matter anymore that we got each other the same thing for
our seventh birthdays! You don't care about me now!" With a cold, pressing sob
she ran from the room.
Riih picked up the necklace, and held it so
it sparkled in the sun's feeble dusk rays. It was a silver chain with a silver
heart in the middle. Karritma, her sister's full name, was in scripted in the
center, circled by a chain of daises. The lock on the chain was broken after
being ripped off by Rit. Riih whispered, "Maybe the broken can be fixed."
* * * * *
Rit sniffed loudly, and wiped her nose angrily.
She sat down onto a forgotten tree stump.
"I am like this stump," she said thickly. "I
am forgotten and alone." She buried her face in her paws. "Why, oh why does
Riih insist on changing for them…doesn't she remember all the happiness we shared
together?" she sighed, her eyes refilling with tears. "I wish she was here now…"
"She is," a voice said. Rit whipped her head
around and caught her sister's eye with a glare. "What do you want? I thought
you were too popular for me."
Sadness and pain filled Riih's eyes. "Rit, I'm
sorry… I didn't mean all that." She opened up cupped hands and said, "Here."
Rit looked inside her hands and gasped. It was, indeed, the necklace… totally
and completely fixed.
"Muti helped me fix it," Riih said shyly. Rit
took the necklace in her paws and looked at it.
"This means more to me than you could ever know,"
"And Rit, I'm going to stop hanging out with
that crowd… you're right, we've done everything together since we were little
and now isn't the time to change that and-"
"Riih," Rit said. "I think I've been the fool
here. If you want to be friends with them, you should be able to do so. No one
should stand in your way of being happy. Just don't forget about me."
Riih's face glowed, and she took the necklace
and clipped it around her sister's neck. "Don't worry… that couldn't happen."