There are ants in my Lucky Green Boots Circulation: 81,443,838 Issue: 150 | 23rd day of Swimming, Y6
Home | Archives Articles | Editorial | Short Stories | Comics | New Series | Continued Series
 

Melodramatic Stories and Tales for the Soul


by erika_idle

--------

It was a somber and savage night.

     The residents of number 63994 were willing away the hours doing a most precarious task: cleaning out the refrigerator. It had been several years to the day since the back of the Idle's avocado-colored refrigerator was clearly visible. Since then, a thick layer of plasma had grown through all the cracks and crevasses of the grille.

     Today, the Idles were waging war on that plasma.

     Yoko, a white Aisha, pulled out a carton of what was once hummus. She sniffed it delicately. "Well," she declared, "this certainly has passed its expiration date. Excuse me for a second while I pass out." Yoko's head suddenly rolled back and she fainted onto the tile floor of the kitchen.

     Jon, a red Eyrie, woke her up by dousing her in cold water. "You can't say that I didn't warn you," Yoko said, as she shakily stood up again.

     Gioacchino, a mutant Kacheek, clicked his tongue in amusement. He reached into the refrigerator and pulled out a can so archaic that the original label had turned into yellow grit. "Wonder what this was," he mused.

     "Open it," urged Jon.

     Gioacchino pulled the tab off of the can easily (it had rusted through). He peered inside. "I'm still not sure what this was... but whatever it is now has the beginnings of a cardiovascular system."

     "Toss it," said Erika, the guardian and mother of Gioacchino, Jon, and Yoko. "You know the rules. It's not good if it has changed color, state of matter, is moving, or evolving in some shape or form."

     Gioacchino tossed the can into the rather full garbage can. He pulled out a second can. The contents of this can easily broke all of his mother's rules. What once was a bratwurst now was a puddle of green gelatin, wriggling and making coughing noises.

     Jon looked over at the bratwurst. "Wow... I didn't think that anything could beat that piece of cheesecake Yoko found... but this takes the cake."

     "I'll give you my Morguss plushie if you eat it."

     "Get me a fork."

     When Erika's back was turned (Yoko had fainted again at the sight of a very warped slab of ham), Jon dug his fork into the bratwurst and took a bite.

     "Well?" asked Gioacchino breathlessly. "How does it taste?"

     "Was the wallpaper in here always so psychedelic?" Jon giggled through his mouthful.

     Gioacchino stared at his brother. Jon's eyes were rolling and out of focus. His front talons that were holding the fork were shaking involuntarily. His ears and wings were twitching violently. And he was still giggling. He didn't stop giggling - even when he passed out on the floor.

     It was Erika who came to the rescue this time. She grabbed the bucket of cold water and thoroughly soaked Jon. He sat straight up, as rigid as a board.

     "Thanks."

     "No problem," she replied, glaring at Gioacchino. The Kacheek cowered in fear.

     "So... out of curiosity... what's for dinner?" Yoko said.

     Erika stared at the bleary unpromising contents of the refrigerator. "That piece of cheesecake looks promising," she said, with as much cheerfulness as she could muster.

     Gioacchino licked his lips hungrily, trying to ignore his grumbling stomach. He coughed loudly. "Is that green fungus I see growing on the edge of it?" he lied.

     "Where?"

     "Right there, on the corner."

     Erika sighed, dumping the cheesecake into the trash can. "Well, I guess we can always skip dinner," she said sorrowfully. "I'll just buy some hot dogs at Hubert's Hot Dog Stand tomorrow." Her stomach rumbled in unison with Jon and Yoko's.

     Erika sighed. "Let's just call it a day," she said. "We'll tackle the rest of the refrigerator and the icebox tomorrow. Until then, how about a nice story?"

     Jon and Yoko followed their mother into the den. Gioacchino hung back, however, and peeked into the garbage can. The perfect cheesecake gleamed back up at him. In three swift gulps, the deceitful Kacheek had devoured it. After wiping his mouth clean of evidence, he quickly rejoined his family in the den.

     Erika was just pulling a heavy green volume off of the bookshelf and settling herself down in front of the fire when Gioacchino slipped in, unnoticed.

     "What story is it today?" asked Yoko.

     Erika flipped through the pages at light speed, her eyes closed. Finally, she jabbed her thumb in between pages 301 and 302. She opened her eyes and read outloud, "Kalora the Kau."

     "Who's she?" asked Yoko.

     "Perhaps you should listen," Gioacchino said. "Listen to the story and behold, for you will be enlightened in such trivial facts.

     Erika cleared her throat and began to read outloud. "Name: Kalora the Kau," she read.

     "I feel enlightened already," Jon muttered.

     "Age : How rude! You wouldn't dare ask."

     "Dare I say that somebody has hit their midlife crisis with a tad bit too much velocity?" Gioacchino said.

     "Occupation : On permanent holiday, but if the right job comes up," continued Erika. "Hobby : Making macaroni sculptures and collecting false finger nails."

     "Oooh, I bet this Kalora thinks she's pretty ingenious with her avant-garde linguini renditions of the Colossus," Gioacchino growled sarcastically. "Talent is just an unfair advantage to modern artists like Kalora."

     "Is somebody feeling a little spiteful?" Yoko asked innocently.

     "No!" retorted Gioacchino. "Just because I happened to receive second prize at the county fair's Budding Artists Talent Competition right behind some stupid Jubjub who made a throw pillow stuffed with wet noodles..."

     "Let's just leave it at this," Jon said, interrupting his brother's rant. "If I can do it, it's not art."

     Erika coughed loudly. "Back to the story?" she suggested. "Quote : "What are you talking about? It wasn't me..."" Flipping over a page, she began to read the serious text of the story about Kalora the Kau.

     ""It's my personal opinion," Kalora said, "that your tiara is totally overrated and, not to be crude or anything, but it makes your head look very wide. However, I do think it would look much better on me. May I try it on?""

     "It's just that... you're obviously an autumn, and I'm a natural summer," Yoko said, imitating Kalora.

     ""Excuse me? I don't think so, Miss see-through visor," Princess Fernypoo shot back."

     "Can't touch this!" Yoko declared, snapping her fingers in a very flippant fashion.

     ""You better not lay a hoof on my tiara!"," Erika read as Jon and Gioacchino made annoying hissing and yowling sound effects in hopes of making the story even more dramatic.

     ""All right, all right, I'm not going to argue with you. I got the message. You are the prettiest of all the Cheat! Players. Plus, it looks better on you and, sadly, I'll never be able to afford a tiara such as yours...""

     "I'm just a poor Kau, from a poor family," sang Jon quietly.

     "She's just a poor Kau! From a poor family!" cried out Yoko and Gioacchino in perfect chorus.

     ""Well, I'm off to get my 14 hours of beauty sleep," the princess said as she left and closed the door to her bedroom."

     "Oooh!" cried Yoko. "Dee-nied! That's a slam to the face, K-Kau!"

     "Since when did Yoko go 'West-Side' on us?" whispered Jon to Gioacchino. Gioacchino snickered.

     ""Yeah, it's pretty late," Kalora said, pretending to stretch and yawn, "I better be going. I've got to get up early and see the doctor about this twitching in my ear.""

     "It's not twitchy ear, Kalora," Gioacchino explained. "It's what happens to jealous obsessive-compulsive eavesdroppers like yourself."

     Erika, who had used Gioacchino's interjection to pause and examine Mr. Next-Door fighting with the milkman, quickly turned back to the book, coughing loudly and not very plausibly. ""Yeah, whatever," Fernypoo yelled from behind her bedroom door, "Just make sure you lock up when you leave.""

     "...and so concludes Princess Fernypoo's Least-Likely-To-Be-Followed-Information yet!"

     "What? Lock up! Oh, yeah! Right... lock up... mmm-hmm... sure thing..."

     ""Okay, buh-bye." Kalora slammed the door, but stayed inside."

     "Bye, Dodger!" Gioacchino said, waving mockingly.

     "A few hours later, Kalora popped her head out from behind a plant in the corner of Fernypoo's living room."

     "Sowwie for ze int-er-uption, Prinzezz Fernie-Poo... but... hhhavve you a rrrr-ooohm? For mei... mmminkie?" Jon slurred.

     "Slowly, she crept along the creaky wooden floors, stopping occasionally to make cricket sounds (don't ask)."

     "I wasn't going to!" Jon cried out in indignation.

     "Then don't!" Gioacchino retorted.

     "I wasn't going to!"

     "Then don't!"

     "I wasn't going to!"

     "Then do-"

     Gioacchino and Jon's battle was interrupted by soft 'chirrup' noises issuing from the corner by the fireplace. They stared in awe at Yoko, who was grinning. She made her trademarked cricket noise again. "Sorry," she smiled, gazing at her brothers' faces. "I couldn't help it."

     "As she opened the bedroom door she saw Fernypoo fast asleep under a pink quilt with lace ruffles."

     "Obviously Fernypoo took several leaves out of Yoko's book of home decoration..." Jon muttered.

     "Where could it be? Where does she keep it?" She glanced back at Fernypoo and noticed that she was wearing the tiara." "Poppycocks!" she accidentally yelled aloud."

     "Oh, crudmuffins! I just shouted 'poppycocks' outloud!" Jon yelled.

     "Oh, flibbertigibbet! I just yelled 'crudmuffins' outloud!" Gioacchino cried.

     "Oh... sod it all," Yoko grunted.

     "Fernypoo rolled over onto her back and began to snore. The tiara had lifted off her head just enough that, if Kalora was a careful Kau, she could remove it and split town before Fernypoo could say 'breakfast'."

     "Luncheon!"

     "Afternoon tea!"

     "She cautiously removed the tiara from Fernypoo's head and situated it between her own ears just so. She admired herself in the mirror beside the bed and creepily whispered to herself, "Nice to meet you. I'm Princess Kalora. Yes, I would love to dance....""

     "You make me feel like dancing... wanna dance the night away!"

     "Two hops! Two hops! Now, cha-cha real smooth..."

     "I couldn't ask for another! No-no-no-no-no... I couldn't ask for another... groove is in the heart!"

     "Let's go! Let's go! Discotheque!"

     "Shake your tail-feather!"

     Erika rolled her eyes, rhythmically whacking herself on the forehead with the thick, hardbound edition of the Neopedia as a result of her pets' antics. Nevertheless, she continued her story after she shot a very annoyed glare at her three pets.

     "Then, as if bad luck walked in and introduced itself..."

     "Allow me to introduce myself," Jon said. "I'm Dr. Sloth."

     "...both of Kalora's ears began to twitch like mad, sending the tiara straight to the ground. The tiara clanked as it hit the floorboards, and Fernypoo leapt from her bed screaming like a whistle..."

     "How can you scream like a whistle?" Jon pondered outloud.

     Yoko screamed very loudly, causing everybody in the room to jump. Finally she stopped screaming, and whistled a jaunty little tune that sounded suspiciously like "Summertime Blues." She stopped whistling and suddenly started screaming again, causing everybody to clap their hands to their ears from the earsplitting din.

     "I didn't ask for a demonstration!" Jon howled, covering his ears. "...or your rhetorical answers!"

     Once Yoko had settled down again, Erika continued the story, talking slightly louder than she had previously. ""Kalora! How could you?" By that time, Kalora had made like she was sleeping at the foot of Fernypoo's bed."

     "I am disturbed," Gioacchino said.

     "She pried her eyes open and let out a fake yawn. "What? Oh this, erm... it's not mine. I mean, it's quite ugly actually. I don't know how you wear this horrid thing....""

     Slamming shut the Neopedia, Erika beamed down at Jon, Gioacchino, and Yoko. "So? Did we pick up any hidden morals in this story?"

     The three sat in silence. Gioacchino looked slightly nervous. His brow was sweaty, and his face was a flushed pink. He avoided Erika's eyes.

     Erika rolled her eyes for the second time that evening. "How about... oh, let's see... the greatest crimes are caused by surfeit, not want?" she proposed.

     Yoko blinked. Jon scratched his ear. Gioacchino, however, looked skeptical. "That's very... wise... of you," he said, putting much emphasis on the word wise.

     Erika's ears and cheeks burned visibly. "I can surprise," she mumbled, almost inaudibly.

     "It sounds like... well, almost a political statement..." Gioacchino mentioned with all the delicacy of somebody handling dangerous explosives.

     "Why yes, I suppose it does," Erika said, fidgeting in her chair. "Forget the fungus - who feels like eating the rest of that cheesecake?" she shot suddenly, jumping to her feet and racing to the kitchen.

     "WAIT! Come back here!" Gioacchino yelled. "I know that's not your quote! Don't deny it!"

     "It is TOO my quote!"

     "Blatant plagiarism, that's what it is! DON'T OPEN THAT REFRIGERATOR!"

     Yoko and Jon smiled at each other, following Gioacchino and their mother's now-raging fight into the kitchen, at what looked like an extremely enjoyable and particularly amusing evening.

The End

 
Search the Neopian Times




Week 150 Related Links



---------

Windstorm: Part One
Looking towards the Storytelling campfire, I perked my ears. Maybe someone was relating an intriguing tale. A young yellow Lupe appeared to be the storyteller.

by sara_mossflower



Submit your stories, articles, and comics using the new submission form.