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Petpet Name: Biscuit
Pet Name: Agathea
In his library at the Brightvale University, Sandro sat deep in thought. He had been at afternoon tea when he was struck by a brilliant idea. Nibbling distractedly on a digestive biscuit, he stirred suddenly as it was snatched from his hand.
"Ibid!" he shouted. "Give that back!"
His Whoot ignored him and quickly wolfed down the biscuit.
Sandro sighed. "Ah, well... I wasn't that hungry anyway." He shook his head. "What am I going to do with you? I've never seen a Petpet who loved biscuits so much."
With crumbs on his beak, Ibid grinned impishly at his master.
"Hm... there is something I've been meaning to talk to you about, Ibid. General Dacon in Sakhmet wants a copy of my book Philosophy of War! He thinks his soldiers would greatly benefit from reading it. I must say, I agree with him."
Ibid rolled his eyes. His master wasn't called the Smug Philosopher for nothing.
"Anyway, Ibid," Sandro continued, "do you think you would be up to the task of delivering the book? Sakhmet really isn't that far from here. It's just a short trip across the Haunted Woods and into the Lost Desert."
The Whoot stared at him incredulously. A short trip?!? Though he had occasionally delivered letters and documents for his master in some of the lands adjacent to Brightvale, he had never been asked to travel this far before... nor to carry one of his books. Also, he certainly had never been asked to fly across the Haunted Woods, of all places!
"No need to worry, old chum," Sandro assured him, sensing his Petpet's distress. "You won't actually be in the Haunted Woods. You'll just be flying over it. You'll be back before you know it."
That didn't exactly make Ibid feel any better. It was times like this that the Whoot wished he could talk so he could voice his concerns. For one thing, he couldn't understand why his master didn't just use the Neopian Post Office to send the book. Though Sandro was extremely intelligent, at times he seemed to lack common sense.
Well, perhaps it wouldn't be so bad. After all, a Whoot flying over the Haunted Woods wouldn't exactly be conspicuous. There were plenty of them to be found there perched in the trees. Plus, delivering the book would make his owner happy, at least. He supposed that was the most important thing.
So, later that day, Ibid set off from Brightvale, clutching an autographed copy of Philosophy of War in his talons. It was fairly easy going... for a while. However, just as the dead trees of the Haunted Woods came into view beneath him, the little Whoot found himself straining from the weight of the heavy tome. Finally, the strain became too much and Ibid began tumbling downward... into the Neovian cemetery, of all places! He bounced off a tombstone and hit the ground with a thud.
Nearby sat a little Ixi girl, the sole creature stirring in the cemetery. She looked up upon hearing the sound.
"I wonder wot that wuz, Perdy," the girl whispered to a worn Yellow Ixi Plushie she was holding. "I'm gonna go see. You stay here," she (quite needlessly) instructed the inanimate toy. She was clearly nervous, though trying to act brave, not unlike any ordinary child who had heard a bump in the night... but she wasn't an ordinary child -- she was a zombie. The little undead girl crept through the cemetery toward the area the noise had come from. She peered over a tombstone and gasped softly. "A Petpet!"
Dazed, Ibid slowly opened his eyes... and found himself staring into the face of a zombie! It was a little girl with unusually bright eyes that actually seemed to have intelligence behind them... but she was a zombie, nonetheless! Ibid was convinced she had just found lunch... or maybe a midnight snack, considering what time of day it was.
Well, the little Whoot wasn't going to become a meal for a zombie if he could help it! He stood up and flapped his wings to fly away... only to fall backward and wince in pain. He realized, to his great dismay, that his wing had been broken in the fall.
Ibid couldn't believe the terrible luck he was having. To travel all this way carrying a heavy book, fall and break his wing, and then to top it all off, have his brain eaten by a zombie.
Now the undead girl was reaching for him. Ibid made a few steps backward, but it was no use. He knew he was done for! He squeezed his eyes shut and cringed in terror as the little zombie picked him up and... hugged him to her gently.
"Aww, you're hurt, ain't you? You poor little thing."
Ibid opened one eye, then the other, and stared up at the Ixi curiously. Wasn't she going to eat his brain? Apparently not, much to his relief.
"Don't you worry," said the zombie girl tenderly. "I'll take care o' you."
Now Ibid couldn't believe the good luck he was having. This was a very unusual zombie he had stumbled across. He couldn't understand why she didn't act like your typical undead monster, but he was certainly glad she didn't.
"Oh, by th' way," the zombie girl said, "my name's Agathea."
"Now," she continued, "that wing o' yours is gonna need to be bandaged up. I ain't got any bandages, though. Hmm... I know!"
Agathea tore a piece of fabric from her dress and began wrapping it carefully around the Whoot's wing. "I wouldn't normally want to do anythin' wot would mess up me pretty dress, but I'll make an exception fer you." She smiled.
Oh boy, Ibid thought to himself with amusement. Just what I need -- another snazzy dresser worrying about their clothes.
However, while Ibid did truly appreciate what Agathea was doing for him, he couldn't help but notice that her dress, though rather fancy and not too bad looking for zombie clothing, was quite tattered already and had most definitely seen better days.
"There!" Agathea said. "That makes a real nice bandage, doesn't it? An' that blue color looks 'andsome on you."
The Whoot regarded the strip of cloth wrapped around his wing and nodded his head in agreement.
Agathea put a hand to her chin, trying to think of anything else she could do for the little Petpet. "You're probably hungry, ain't you?" she finally asked. "Well, all I've got are a few biscuits 'ere. You can 'ave 'em, though, if you want." The Whoot went at the offered biscuits eagerly, quickly gobbling all of them up. Agathea giggled. "You like 'em, don't you? I think I'll call you Biscuit 'cause you likes 'em so much."
"Biscuit" certainly didn't sound as studious as "Ibid," but the Whoot didn't mind being called that. The name did suit him very well, indeed.
"Imagine that," marveled Agathea to herself. "I got a Petpet o' me very own!"
"Ibid!" Sandro called, though his voice was little more than a whisper. It had been several days since his Petpet had begun his journey and he should have been back by now. Sandro realized that Ibid must have gotten lost, and he had a horrible feeling that it had happened in the Haunted Woods. Though it terrified him to venture into that frightening place, if his Petpet was in trouble then he wasn't about to abandon him to some dreadful fate.
So, here he was, though due to his fear his search efforts were rather pathetic. It occured to him that, if something had captured Ibid, it -- whatever it was -- would have no trouble capturing him as well... and then where would they both be? He did begin to feel a bit better, though, as he reached a section of the woods that he knew was not far from the fairly-safe and civilized town of Neovia.
The Gelert stifled a cry as he nearly tripped over something that had been half-hidden in some dead leaves.
"My book!" he muttered as he picked it up. "But... whatever could have happened to Ibid?"
It was at that moment that he heard some giggling nearby. He quickly dashed behind the nearest tree, then slowly peered around. There was Ibid... in the Neovian cemetery... and right next to him was a little Ixi girl... a zombie! Sandro was horrified, and his mind reeled as he tried to think of a way to rescue his Petpet. Though he was renowned for being an excellent strategist, the only plan his panicked mind could think of (much to his irritation) was to just rush in, grab Ibid, and then run like mad. He looked down at the book he was holding. It was quite heavy. If the zombie gave him any trouble, then he could probably fend her off with it. He knew that wasn't a good way to treat a book but, well... desperate times called for desperate measures.
Now he just had to wait for the right moment... although, if he was honest, his waiting "for the right moment" was more stalling than anything else. The thought of facing a zombie, no matter how tiny, was terrifying to him.
Sandro was beginning to notice something strange about the scene in front of him, however. He momentarily lifted the hair from his eyes to make sure he was seeing what he thought he was seeing. The zombie was... showing Ibid how to make flower chains? Yes, that's what she seemed to be doing. The Petpet showed no signs of being frightened. In fact, he appeared to be enjoying himself!
As Sandro watched Agathea, he began to feel sorry for the lonely little girl. He found himself actually empathizing with her situation. Before he joined the Seekers, he, much like her, had had nobody. The girl was clearly thrilled to have a new friend, a Petpet of her own -- or so she thought.
Though he considered introducing himself to (and perhaps befriending) Agathea, Sandro thought it best to stay hidden because he would find it hard to explain himself without mentioning that he was Ibid's real owner, and he just didn't have the heart to do that. Also, no matter how nice she seemed to be, he certainly didn't want to risk angering a zombie.
It was when Agathea left briefly to gather some more flowers that Sandro seized his chance and stepped up to Ibid. "There you are! I thought I'd never find you!"
Though he knew he should have been happy to see his master again, Ibid felt rather disappointed. Over the past couple of days he had really grown to like the little zombie girl who was taking care of him.
"I've noticed you found a new friend," Sandro said.
Ibid looked at him in surprise. How did he know that?
"And she's a zombie of all things," Sandro added with a chuckle, "but very unusual one. I'm assuming, then, that you're not in any danger."
The Whoot shook his head.
"You like her a lot, don't you? I take it she really likes you. Hmm... how would you like to stay with her for a while? I'm sure she could use the company."
Ibid's face brightened immediately. He nodded.
"You're sure she won't eat your brain or anything like that?" Sandro asked jokingly.
Ibid nodded again.
"All right," Sandro said with a grin. "Well, seeing as I traveled all this way already, I suppose I might as well deliver this book myself. Ta ta, then, Ibid."
The Whoot grinned at Sandro, and then watched the Gelert disappear through the trees as he awaited the return of his new little zombie friend.
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