A Trade's a Trade
There was nothing more that Wiseguy, a glowing Wocky loved
more than Trading Cards. He boasted to his friends that he owned every card and
one day would work at the Trading Card Shop in the Neopian Bazaar. That would
be the perfect life.
As a matter-of-fact, Wiseguy was on his way to
the Trading Card shop right now, his younger brother Tweetie tagging along.
Tweetie was a Pteri, a starry one, so he flew above Wiseguy.
It was a bright and breezy day in Neopia Central,
a perfect day to walk to the Trading Card Shop and purchase a few booster packs.
"Wiseguy, are we almost there?" Tweetie asked.
"Yeah, I can see the shop!"
"Great!" said Tweetie, grinning. Today he was
going to buy his first booster pack. He wanted to be just like Wiseguy in every
way and Tweetie had finally saved up enough Neopoints to buy a booster pack.
He had seen Wiseguy's Neodeck, piling up to the ceiling of his bedroom. It was
a very tall tower of cards, since the ceilings were vaulted.
Tweetie knew that Wiseguy's favorite card was
Niten Hiroru, the Ninja Kiko. Wiseguy practically worshipped that card. It was
in the front page of his Neodeck, the first card. Tweetie thought that maybe
someday he'd be lucky enough to have that card… just like Wiseguy.
"Here we are," said Wiseguy with a pleasant grin.
They reached an odd-looking shop shaped like giant cards stacked together. Wiseguy
opened the door for Tweetie, who joyfully soared in.
The shop was filled with Neopets talking excitedly
about all of the new cards that had just arrived. On all of the walls and in
the aisles were none other than mint condition Trading Cards. All of them were
protected with a light covering, preventing them from harm. But Wiseguy wasn't
interested in the single cards, as he owned most of them.
"Wow, Wiseguy look at this!" Tweetie called to
"Solar Fyre," said Wiseguy, tossing the red card
back onto the shelf. "Already have it."
"What about this one?" Tweetie asked, holding
up a blue Trading Card. "Malkus Vile?"
"Have it," said Wiseguy, and he gently pushed
his brother away, "why don't we look at the booster packs instead…"
They stopped in front of a row of silver packages,
each glimmering under the lights. Wiseguy casually plucked a few off the shelf
and said, "I'll get these. Here's one for you. Let's get home so we can open
"Wait, I don't want this one," Tweetie put his
back on the shelf. A moment later he picked up an identical one and insisted,
"I want this one."
"But it looks the same," Wiseguy stated.
"Yeah, well… I have a good feeling about this
Wiseguy rolled his green eyes, "whatever."
He and Tweetie paid nine hundred Neopoints for
each booster pack. Wiseguy's total was two thousand seven hundred Neopoints.
But he was happy.
On the way home, Wiseguy let Tweetie ride on
his back. Tweetie was in charge of holding the bag, which contained the booster
The minute they were inside the Neohome, Tweetie
dumped the contents of the bag on the living room floor and Wiseguy gathered
up his booster packs, and pushed one to Tweetie.
"Hey, this one's not mine!" Tweetie complained.
"You have my booster pack."
"Fiiiine," Wiseguy rolled his eyes again and
traded with Tweetie. He exchanged the booster packs and started to open his
Tweetie watched with growing excitement, as Wiseguy
would mumble "Oooh "and" Cool and Dang, another double He showed Tweetie his
new twenty four cards: Tyran Far, Sir Cheekalot, The Archmagus of Roo, King
Roo, another Sir Cheekalot…
"My turn!" yelled Tweetie, and he slit open his
booster pack with a starry wingtip. He carefully pulled out the eight cards
and read them out loud, "Underwater Chef, Haiki-Lu, Otona Protector of Seas,
Glug Glug Jones, Princess Fernypoo, Siona, Amazonian Kyrii and Lupe Warrior."
"That's nice…" Wiseguy started to walk away,
but then he stopped abruptly. He slowly turned back to Tweetie. "What was that
Tweetie shuffled through his new cards, "Lupe
Wiseguy's jaw dropped.
Tweetie looked at him with round eyes, "Wiseguy,
are you okay?"
"Lupe Warrior?" Wiseguy's voice raised
"Don't move. I'll be right back." There was a
blur of radioactive fur as Wiseguy raced to his bedroom. Tweetie watched in
anticipation when Wiseguy returned and started to remove a card from its sleeve
protector. He turned to his brother, "Do you know what this is?"
"Yeah, Niten Hiroru. Isn't that your favorite
"Yes," said Wiseguy, still smiling like a maniac,
"and I'll trade it to you for your Lupe Warrior."
"Wow, really?" Tweetie asked, ecstatic.
Wiseguy nodded, "Lupe Warrior is worth well over
one hundred thousand Neopoints!"
"Really?" Tweetie asked again.
"Really," echoed Wiseguy, "I'll give you my favorite
card for it."
To Tweetie, owning Wiseguy's favorite card in
all of Neopia meant more to him than a one hundred thousand-Neopoint card. Wiseguy's
going to trade me his favorite card for it! Tweetie mused, That's what
I've wanted for such a long time! And now I can finally have it…
"Okay, I'll trade you." Tweetie handed Wiseguy
the Lupe Warrior and Wiseguy handed Tweetie Niten Hiroru.
Like a lightning bolt zapping through him, Wiseguy
felt a pang of guilt. Could he really trade his brother a card that was worth
much less than another? Wiseguy took a deep breath and just stared at his new
Oh well, thought Wiseguy, Tweetie seems
"If you want to trade back, just tell me," said
Tweetie, "I don't want to feel like I'm ripping you off or anything…"
Wiseguy felt another pang of guilt. But that
was soon replaced by a wave of happiness. "A trade's a trade."
"That means that no matter what, you can't trade
"Okay," said Tweetie smiling. And wanting to
sound just like his brother, he recited, "A trade's a trade."
That evening, Wiseguy sat at the kitchen table,
flipping through the pages of cards in his Neodeck.
"Did you get any new cards today?" his owner
Wiseguy smirked, "Yeah, a few."
"Tweetie bought his first booster pack today,
and I traded him for a card that was worth over one hundred thousand Neopoints!"
"Tweetie got a card worth that much?" Sam asked,
eyebrows meeting her hairline.
"Yeah, and I traded him my favorite card for
it. Niten Hiroru."
Sam frowned, "I may not know much about trading
cards, but isn't Niten Hiroru worth around thirty thousand?"
"Yeah," said Wiseguy, astonished, "how did you
"I had to buy it to get the avatar. If you ask
me, that didn't sound like a very fair trade on Tweetie's behalf."
"Oh come on," Wiseguy started to crack his knuckles
anxiously, "he seemed happy."
His owner frowned. Then he shrugged, "Well, if
he thought it war fair, then whatever."
"Great!" said Wiseguy, and he slid the card out
of his Neodeck. "I'm taking this to the Trading Card shop before dark. I just
want to see what I can get for it."
"Okay," said Sam, "be home soon."
Wiseguy pushed open the door to the Trading Card
shop a few minutes later. There was hardly anyone around because of the late
hours, except for the blue Buzz who worked there.
"Excuse me, but I was wondering if you could
tell me how much this costs." Wiseguy handed the Lupe Warrior card to the Buzz.
He looked at it front and back.
"If you want to sell it to me, I can give you
two hundred Neopoints for it."
Wiseguy's eyes bugged out farther than the Buzz
shopkeeper's. Then he laughed. "You're joking right? Lupe Warrior is worth over
one hundred thousand Neopoints!"
The Buzz frowned then he shook his head. "No
joke, this card is worth only two hundred Neopoints."
"But…but…" Wiseguy stammered.
"Oh, wait a minute!" The Buzz went to the back
shelf and picked up a yellow card, "Did you mean this one? Because I know for
a fact this one is worth a ton."
Wiseguy looked at the card and his stomach dropped
to his knees. Draik Warrior. It was Draik Warrior that was worth all
the Neopoints, not Lupe Warrior.
"Oh," said Wiseguy feeling extremely stupid.
"Do you still want to sell this card?" The shopkeeper
waved the Lupe Warrior.
"No, I'll just take it back… thanks."
The walk home in the dark was more dreadful than
being painted grey. Then a thought popped into Wiseguy's mind, All I have
to do is trade Tweetie back. He'll let me, he practically worships me!
And he sprinted off towards home.
Back on Wishing Well Drive, Wiseguy opened the
door and cautiously stepped inside. Tweetie was on the living room floor, staring
at the Niten Hiroru card. Wiseguy gulped and said,
"You know, Tweetie, how about we trade back.
That old Niten Hiroru is worthless. But check out this Lupe Warrior," he dangled
the card in front of Tweetie's eyes, "it's a real winner. So will you trade
Tweetie shook his head, "I can't."
Wiseguy gaped at him, "Why not?"
"I'm not allowed to." Before Wiseguy could ask
why, Tweetie replied, "You said 'A trade's a trade' and that rule means that
I can't trade you back. Sorry."
"Now hang on a minute," Wiseguy stopped Tweetie
from heading upstairs, "that rule can be broken if both Neopets want to trade
back. Do you want to?"
Tweetie thought about it. Wiseguy waited anxiously
for a reply. Finally, Tweetie said, "Nope."
"A trade's a trade." With that, Tweetie fled
upstairs with his cards tucked under his wing.
"Well, I guess you aren't such a wise guy after
Sam poked her head around the corner.
Wiseguy ran over to his owner, a pleading look
in his eyes, "Sam, please make him trade me back!"
"I can't," said the girl with a smirk. "A trade's
Author's Note: Hope you enjoyed this short story! It's been a while since
I've written one and I've finally got back on track. Feedback is much obliged.