It was the end of summer and the days were beginning
to show signs of fall. Wildflowers withered and nights grew colder. Neopia was
in a transition period.
"Indi, what do you say we take a little vacation
before Neoschool starts again?" a teenage girl by the name of Charmedhorses
asked her baby Uni.
"Really?" Indipsi's brown eyes grew large. "Where
are we going?"
"I don't know," Charmed said. "Where would you
like to go?"
In a heartbeat Indipsi exclaimed, "Mystery Island!"
Charmed turned to look at her. "We've been there
like a million times."
The baby Uni shook her head furiously. "You've
never taken me before."
"Really?" Charmed asked in surprise.
"You've gone like a million times, but always
alone," Indipsi informed her.
"Well you're always on a field trip or at a
friend's house or something like that," Charmed said.
"Wherever I was it doesn't matter now."
"Right. I guess we're going to Mystery Island,
then!" Charmed agreed. "When should we leave?"
"Right now," Indipsi suggested eagerly.
"That soon?" Charmed raised her eyebrows challengingly.
"How about tomorrow? If you can be ready by tomorrow morning I'll take you."
Indi rolled her eyes. How long could packing
take? Then she began to think about all the things she wanted to bring along
and raced off to her bedroom. She had to get a move on things!
As Indipsi threw things into a duffle bag she
wondered what Mystery Island would be like. Sure, she'd read about it in books
but would the sand really tickle her hooves And she could help doubting that
the water really was warm.
Over dinner that night Indipsi begged her owner
into telling her about her many trips to the mystical land. The only place that
even compared to the country in her mind was Mystery Island.
"Well, it's absolutely gorgeous," Charmed spilled
eagerly. "The place is full of palm trees and the air is sweet with the scent
"What kind?" Indi asked, wanting to know every
"All kinds," Charmed was being too vague. "Tropical
"What are the Neopets like?" Indipsi wanted
"The natives or tourists?"
"Both, huh?" Charmed paused and took a deep
breath. "The natives are so amazing. Their coats are the most beautiful patterns-"
"Like Choppy's?" Indi asked, referring to Charmed's
island Uni plushie.
"Yes, that's right. Like Choppy's. Anyway,"
Charmed continued her description. "The Neopets are beautiful and very kind.
The tourists, well, what can you say about tourists? The beaches get busy so
it's good to know of less populated areas."
"And you do?" Indipsi interrupted.
"Some of them. Mystery Island's a big place,
but it's so popular it's hard to find a somewhat deserted place."
Charmedhorses continued sharing stories with
her Uni clear through dessert, when she noticed the starry sky outside. "Okay,
it's about bedtime now," Charmed declared. "You'll get to see it all tomorrow."
That night Indipsi didn't sleep a wink. True,
her owner had kept her up longer than usual, but that wasn't why. Images and
thoughts reeled through the Uni's mind. She simply could not wait to go.
When morning came and Indi had barely gotten
a couple minutes of sleep she was just as excited as she had been the night
"Ready to go?" Charmed yawned after breakfast.
"Yes!" Indipsi was practically dancing on hoof.
Indi and Charmed headed first to the boat dock
where they then caught a ship to Mystery Island.
"How long does the ride take?" Indipsi asked.
"Oh, I don't know. Two, three hours?" Charmed
The girl and her Uni settled down on the top
deck for the voyage. While Charmed watched the seaside landscape pass them by,
Indipsi's head began to nod. Curled up on a wooden chair the Uni's lack of sleep
began to catch up with her. The ship's rocking motion caused Indi's eyelids
to grow heavy and soon the Uni was sound asleep. Charmed looked over at her
Neopet and shook her head, smiling.
Time passed quickly, Indipsi dozing while Charmed
enjoyed the scenery. When the ship dropped its anchor in the harbor of Mystery
Island, Charmed nudged her sleeping Uni. "Indi, it's time to get up," she whispered.
The baby Uni opened her eyes groggily. As her
weary eyelids rose it was as if a curtain was revealing the picture of her dreams.
On the shore, just a few feet from the boat she could see a small bamboo hut
and an array of palm trees. Seawater lapped gently on the sand, as if trying
to pull Indipsi toward it.
"Indipsi," Charmed interrupted. "We really need
to get off or this ship's going to take us clear back to Neopia Central."
Indi jumped to her hooves, leaving any thoughts
of sleep behind her. "Race you to the shore, Slowpoke!"
"Hey!" Charmed laughed, running after her.
As soon as Indipsi set hoof on the sand she
dropped to her knees and rolled, burying her muzzle in the sand and frolicking
like a foal.
"Are you sure you want to bury yourself in it
like that?" Charmed asked.
"Why not?" Indipsi retorted, looking up from
where she lay on her back.
Charmed shrugged. "A lot of paws, hooves, slippers,
and feet walk on that sand. Who knows what kind of germs lurk there."
Indipsi bolted upright and tossed her mane.
"Yuck," she spat.
"Why don't we find a hotel?" Charmed suggested.
Indi nodded in agreement and joined her owner
walking up the shore.
"If I remember correctly, there's a cute little
place just up ahead," Charmed said. "I bet they have a vacancy."
All the way there Indipsi looked around her
with bright wide eyes. Off to the side of their trodden path the Uni could see
fallen coconuts littered beneath their trees. Then, to her surprise, she noted
one that seemed to be moving. Indi furrowed her brown and looked closer. Sure
enough, the coconut, which seemed larger than the others, stood up and hobbled
"Charmed!" Indipsi exclaimed. That coconut just
"Well, lookie there," Charmed replied, turning
to look. "That must be a coconut Jubjub."
"A coconut Jubjub?" Indipsi repeated skeptically.
"Sure," Charmed said. "You'll see a lot of them
This surprised Indi, who continued to walk companionably
beside her owner.
"Here we are!" Charmed announced a few minutes
later. The pair stood in front of a small cottage, little orange flowers intertwined
amongst the bamboo walls.
"Isn't it cute?" Charmed asked fondly.
Indipsi nodded. "Small, though."
"Let me tell you," Charmed started. "In my mind
small and personal is better than big and impersonal."
Indi understood this point of view and was impressed
when they entered the hotel. Painted on all four sides of the lobby was an ocean-scene
mural of waves crashing against a rocky barrier.
"Do you have any vacancies tonight?" Charmed
was asking an island Draik at the front desk.
While Charmedhorses signed papers and paid for
the room, Indipsi looked out a nearby window, her jaw dropping as she spotted
a green Kougra just outside. He seemed to be heading for the hotel and Indi
hunkered close to the floor, trying to make herself invisible. If she wasn't
mistaken, that Kougra was Cush, an old classmate of hers who had loved to pick
"Ready to see the room?" Charmed asked, dangling
the key on a chain on her finger.
Indispi sprang down the hall ahead of her owner.
Just as Indi slipped into their room, the green
Kougra, who was indeed Cush, entered the hotel in search of a room.
Lying on her single bed Indipsi exhaled heavily.
How could she have run into Cush on Mystery Island? Here she was, in this exotic
place, planning to have the time of her life, and Cush had to be there to spoilt
it. This was just perfect.
"What's wrong? Don't you like the room?" Charmed
asked, sensing the change in her Uni's attitude.
"Yeah, it's great," Indi replied, trying her
best to act cheery. "I'm just a little tired."
"Too tired to collect seashells?"
Indipsi hesitated. She didn't want to run into
Cush, but she loved seashells. What were the chances he would be at the same
beach, anyway? Indi decided to risk it and soon she and Charmed were busy digging
on the shore.
Charmed had guided her Uni to a gorgeous little
beach hidden between coves. The sand beneath Indi's hooves was packed firmly,
and as of yet Charmedhorses and Indipsi were among the few who had found the
gem of a place.
"Ooh! Look at this one!" Indipsi exclaimed,
holding up a fanned seashell with her hoof.
"Beautiful! And what about these?" Charmed called
back from a few yards away. She held a pair of twisted shells up to her ears.
Wouldn't they make cute earrings?"
Indi nodded vigorously, adding another shell
to the woven basket she had borrowed from the hotel.
The sun shone down hard, glinting on the smooth
surfaces. It was late afternoon by not and though Indipsi had gotten very little
sleep the past twenty four hours she was raring to do everything.
"We're going to be here a while," Charmedhorses
reminded her. Charmed had figured on staying there for at least a week. After
all, it was Indi's first time.
"I know, but I want to do something else, today."
Charmed considered this. Indi would get a good
night's sleep that night anyway… "Well, why don't we do something laid back
like build a sandcastle?"
"Okay," Indi said agreeably.
The teenager and Uni walked back to put their
seashells aways and then settled themselves in the sand out front of their hotel.
"Let's get to work," Charmed said, digging her
hands into the ground and compacting the sand, which was to be turned into a
Thirty minutes into their building, Indi and
Charmed had a wonderful turret and entryway built. They had also begun working
on the mote, which would surround the fortress for defense.
It all happened while Charmedhorses was down
gathering water for the mote. Just then Cush exited the hotel. By then it was
around dinner time and the green Kougra was planning to get a bite to eat. This
all changed when he noticed the familiar baby Uni off to his left.
A mischievous smile erupted on his sly face
and he wasted no time in bounding over.
Indipsi felt a pair of eyes watching her and
looked up from her work to groan. "What do you want?"
Cush shrugged innocently. "Need help?"
"Absolutely not," Indipsi replied stiffly, taking
a glance at her owner who was still at the shoreline.
In a rash move Cush flopped down on the sandcastle
Indipsi had been working so devoutly on. Beneath him the fortress toppled over
in defeat, the need for a mote no longer relevant.
Indipsi snorted with disgust and shoved the
Kougra roughly with her hoof. "What'd you do that for?"
"Now do you need help?" Cush teased.
"Yeah, there's a certain Kougra I'd like to
get back at," Indipsi replied, lunging at Cush.
Throughout all of this Charmed had staid back,
letting her Uni handle the situation herself. She did the same here, but watched
with wide eyes at the scene unfolding in front of her.
Indipsi and Cush were scrambling in the sand
and for a moment Charmed was worried one of them would end up with a black eye.
However, the wrestling soon ceased and Charmed's jaw dropped when she saw her
Uni pick up a clump of sand and throw it at the unsuspecting Kougra.
Soon a sand fight was in progress and Charmed
sat down to observe. Behind her the sun hovered just above the waterline. Shadows
began to cover the island and Charmed was thankful that they had a week to spend
on Mystery Island. With Cush there as well, Charmed was sure it would be more
Author's Note: Thanks so much for reading! I know it's more fall than summer
now, but I was a slowpoke getting this story typed up. Feel free to Neomail