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The Legend of Count Von Roo

by kitokat_mh


This is a tale never heard until now. It is a dark tale, a tale that would make the very bravest Grarrl chill to the bone. This is the tale of Count Von Roo.

      It may seem crazy to you that Von Roo once was an ordinary yellow Blumaroo who spent his days bouncing along the streets of Meridell. Of course, he was called Roo back then, and lived a happy, joyful life. It's unbelievable but true - the Count did used to be an ordinary Neopet, until one day when he was having a history lesson at Neoschool.

      Roo's teacher, Mr Creak (an extremely old Scorchio, who spent much of his day recounting his days as a Blacksmith in Meridell, making swords for the young soldiers), was telling all the students about the Haunted Woods. Roo found this fascinating; hearing about the monsters that were said to roam there. He knew that many Neopets visited the Haunted Woods and came back alive, but his mother told him it was far too dangerous. However, as Mr Creak described in further detail the myths and legends that surrounded legends that surrounded the area, Roo became enthralled.

     "Mr Creak?" He asked, raising his paw.

     "Yes, Roo, you have a question?" the Scorchio answered, turning to face the young Blumaroo.

     "Er…yes…are there any vampires in the Haunted Woods?" Roo asked, a grin spreading across his eager face. He had read many books actually written in and about the Haunted Woods, and had grown fascinated with the idea of vampires and werelupes. The old Scorchio could see the glimmer of hope in his eye, and decided to play along.

     "Why of course there are vampires, Roo!" he replied, chuckling. "Oh yes and werelupes and all kinds of monstrous creatures. There was once a tale that a Paint Brush was created in order to try and take over Neopia…this Paint Brush would change the Neopet into a form so evil, and so sinister that it would be banished by its own kind and be doomed to wander the world alone."

     Mr Creak smiled when he saw the look of complete wonder in Roo's face.

     "Is this true? There really is a….a Halloween Paint Brush?" Roo asked in awe of his teacher's words.

     "Oh yes, Roo, there is. Only, it is so rare and so powerful that no one knows how to obtain it…It is said that only a being who has been painted with the Paint Brush has the power to give them to other pets. However, they do not do this out of generosity, oh no, they are trying to build up an army of the undead!" And with this, Mr Creak chuckled and continued with his lesson, not realising the effect that he had on Roo.

     That night, Roo dreamt of the Haunted Woods. The image of the Paint Brush and the pets that it created were constantly in his head, as if a power greater than he was taking over his mind. He barely slept, and spent the next day drawing pictures of the Halloween Neopets he'd seen in his dreams instead of listening to Mr Creak.

     This went on for months, with Roo having the same dreams night after night. He even began to have daydreams containing the same Halloween-style images. He found he couldn't concentrate both at school and at home, and his mother began to worry.

     "Roo," she said one evening, while Roo was silently eating his dinner. "I'm worried about you, darling; you've gone very quiet lately and you seem very distracted. Is there something wrong?"

     "No." Roo answered bluntly, and left the table. He had too much on his mind at the moment to bother with talking to his mother. The Haunted Woods had been playing on his mind for too long, and he just had to go there. Roo gathered all his belongings that he thought he'd need (including his tooth brush, drawings and books about vampires) and sneaked out of the back door while his mother wasn't looking.

     Roo expected the Haunted Woods to be an incredible, magical place where he could have all kinds of fun adventures, but when he got there he soon changed his mind. The whole world was dark, and extremely quiet. The silence was quite frightening, and Roo felt very uneasy. However, under all his fear he felt a strange feeling of well-being, as if all his life he should have been here and had now finally returned. He took a deep breath and entered the woods to explore.

     Roo couldn't see any other Neopets around him, and could only hear a faint scurrying in the distance. His fear soon changed to excitement, and he enjoyed being in such sinister surroundings. After a while, he began to wonder if the creatures he had dreamt about even existed, and as it soon became very cold, he sheltered in a nearby cave. Once again, Roo's dreams were disturbed by all kinds of dark images, which gave him a very restless night. During one of his most life-like dreams, he thought he remembered wandering through the haunted woods and seeing a dark figure fly through the night sky.

     In the morning, Roo found that it was still dark outside (he guessed that in the Haunted Woods it was always dark), and he decided to rest for a little while longer. He spent most of the day drawing more of his sketches, this time focusing on the figure he had seen in his dreams. As the evening drew closer, the cave became shrouded in darkness and Roo could not even see own his paws in front of his eyes. He thought he could hear a faint whistle, as if someone was beckoning him outside, and it kept him awake all through the night. At around midnight, Roo felt he could take it no more, and was drawn to the noise he could still hear coming from outside.

     As he stepped through the opening of the cave, he gasped in amazement. In front of him were several of the horrid creatures he had sketched and dreamt about, but it was the thing they were holding that drew his attention closer - one of them was clutching a Halloween Paint Brush. What seemed to have once been a Cybunny grinned evilly and spoke to Roo.

     "So you finally decided to turn up, Roo?" he asked, and a few of the other Neopets cackled around him. "We've been waiting ever so long for you…" Roo didn't understand this, and simply stood in awe of what he could see. "You see," the Cybunny continued, "A while ago we sensed a Neopet whose heart was becoming darker by the day, and since we have tried to bring you here. Usually our dreams take effect a lot quicker than this, but I can sense you'll be worth the wait…"

     "What are you talking abo….." Roo couldn't continue his sentence. The Cybunny's eyes somehow lulled him into a state of numbness, and he found he couldn't speak. He continued to stare at the Paint Brush.

     "You want this, don't you, Roo?" the Cybunny grinned, and held up the 'Brush. "Ah yes, I knew you would. You will be a powerful asset to our horde. Your heart is already black, and now, using this Paint Brush, you will join us."

     Roo slowly began to come round and realize what was going on. Surely this wasn't really happening? He shook his head, trying to wake himself up from this nightmare. It couldn't be true, they can't have been creating those dreams in his head…this must be just another dream…

     "It's not a dream, Roo," the Cybunny said, as if reading the Blumaroo's mind. "This is all real, and you have to accept that. We want you to join us, to be one of us…"

     Roo took a good look at who he was talking to. They seemed hollow, as if they only just existed. He could see the evil that dwelt within them, and soon made up his mind.

     "No!" He yelled, "I won't!" At first Roo thought he had got through to the Cybunny, until he saw the evil grin that spread across his face.

     "I've been watching you, Roo. I see you looking at this," he said, holding up the Paint Brush and smirking. "I can see the desire in your eyes, I can feel it. You have the same fire in your eyes as every other Neopet that has entered the Haunted Woods. You want it, and you know it. You might think you don't want to join us, but deep down you won't be able to control it. You will be one of us soon enough. The magic of the Paint Brush has already taken hold of you, and no one can escape it. You'll be ours soon enough."

     And with this the Cybunny spread his large, black wings and took off into the night sky. The other creatures followed, looking stronger than any Neopet Roo had ever seen. Roo looked down at the ground and there it was, glowing with a faint, orange light; the Halloween Paint Brush.

     At first Roo thought he could resist it, that he could control the desire that the Cybunny had described. However, he found himself constantly glancing at the item lying on the ground. He tried not to, but found himself picking it up and holding it. He admired the beautifully crafted wooden handle, and imagined all the wondrous things that such a magical item could do. Eventually Roo could take it no more, and brought the end of the Paint Brush close to him. As the bristles touched his fur, he felt the dark power of the Brush take over. He could feel the evil pulsing through his veins and felt his body begin to take shape. His teeth grew longer and pointed, and he felt strong, black wings sprout from his back. He felt like he was no longer of this world, he felt powerful, like nothing in the whole of Neopia could hurt him.

     However, Roo's mind was also transformed. He felt bitter and angry at the rest of the world, especially the creatures that had made him like this. He despised what he had become, and knew that no one would ever love him again. He then decided that if no one would love him, he would make them FEAR him.

     Much to their disgust, Roo did not join forces with the other evil beings. He preferred to live alone in his private castle in the Haunted Woods, where he would destroy anyone who approached. He spent the rest of his days preying on innocent victims in order to quench his insatiable thirst for fresh Neopet blood. He was feared throughout Neopia, and henceforth was known as…Count Von Roo.

The End

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