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Storytelling Competition - (click for the map) | (printer friendly version)

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Week 872
You are on Week 873
Week 874

Every week we will be starting a new Story Telling competition - with great prizes! The current prize is 2000 NP, plus a rare item!!! This is how it works...

We start a story and you have to write the next few paragraphs. We will select the best submissions every day and put it on the site, and then you have to write the next one, all the way until the story finishes. Got it? Well, submit your paragraphs below!

Story Eight Hundred Seventy Three Ends Friday, March 26

Elias the Gold Elephante was having a miserable time. Ever since his long move from Brightvale to the Lost Desert, he was getting sand everywhere. He longed for lush greenery, the smell of books, and the clicking of the ever-spinning Wheel of Knowledge, but all he got when he inhaled too deeply, was a trunk full of sand.

Elias moved to Qasala to study under the wise Nimmo at Words of Antiquity, but all he'd been studying lately was how to stock and sort books. He was quite learned in the Brightvale community and was annoyed at the menial tasks he'd been performing. His instructor told him that he couldn't wait for the Elephante to... how did he put it, "jump right in."

Elias finally made up his mind. After today's work was done, he would go to Master Aremus and ask for some next level projects.

As soon as the sand emptied in the hourglass, indicating the store had reached it's closing time, Elias finished his busy work and set off to find Master Aremus.

When Elias walked to the front of the tent, he realized that the tent had already been readied for closing, with just a singular tablet open and askew on a sand-laden table. He looked up just in time to see Master Aremus seemingly rematerialize in front of the ancient tablet!

Author: honorrolle
Date: Mar 22nd
Wait. Had he been standing there a moment before? The Elephante blinked, confused. Must be the sand in his eyes again.

"Need something, Elias?" The old Nimmo peered expectantly at his apprentice, who had been mentally rehearsing his request all afternoon. By this point, he was sure it could persuade even Hubrid Nox to offer him a promotion and a pat on the back.

"Oh! Yes, sir. As you know, I previously worked at Brightvale Books for three years, and was considered quite skilled at evaluating and pricing rare manuscripts. Why, I even tracked down a first edition of Advanced Learning--"

Aremus snorted loudly. Elias faltered, taken aback, as his employer continued: "Brightvale! So concerned with books, so indifferent to stories! What does a reader learn, I ask you, from pages upon pages of dry facts? Advanced Learning! Hmph!"

Elias gaped. Truth be told, this was more words than Aremus had uttered at once during his entire stay here so far.

"My boy, you may have knowledge about books, but when was the last time you actually read one? Not just to judge its value to others, but to discover its value to you?" As he spoke, the Nimmo moved towards the back of the tent, where he kept his most prized tomes. Elias followed, uncertain. When they reached the final shelf, Aremus gestured expansively at it. "Take your pick, if you're such an expert! Bring it home with you, or stay here, if you prefer--whichever you choose, I expect you back here tomorrow morning with a story to share, understand?"

Elias took in the shelf, packed with promising books, and instinctively began an inventory of flaws: this one's cover had faded in sunlight; that one was a bit dog-eared; those had been opened too many times, causing wear on the spines that would surely diminish the resale value... and then he caught himself. Okay, maybe Aremus had a point. It had been a while since he'd enjoyed a real page-turner. Doing his best not to think of prices, he grabbed the first thing within arm's reach. Then he looked up to say thank you, but Aremus was suddenly nowhere in sight. Now where had he gone off to so suddenly?

Author: iluvmicats
Date: Mar 23rd
After a confused moment, Elias turned his attention back to the book that he ended up grabbing. It was a curious tome that did not have a title or an author listed anywhere. It bore an orangey-brown cover with black filigree, and had three ambiguous symbols on the front - two in green and a larger one in red. Elias shrugged, thinking to himself "well, as good as any I suppose. Let's see where this takes me."

He sat down in a large, comfortable chair that was nearby, unaware that the book he held in his hands was a Bound Magic Book. He looked again for any hint of the author, or title, or any kind of blurb that might give some kind of indication of what he was about to read, but came up short. He got an uneasy feeling, but shook his head at himself - what could possibly go wrong from reading a book?

He opened to the first page and found that it was written in a dialect he had recently studied after coming to Qasala. He was not as fluent as he would like to claim, but he knew enough that reading the book would be possible and, frankly, a challenge that would help take his mind off of the sand in body-parts-unknown.

He stumbled through a paragraph reading along in his head, and found it to be more challenging than he anticipated, but he was not the kind of Elephante to give up. Thinking that it may make it easier, he decided to read out loud so he could really sound things out. He began...

"I ambar na- changed; im tur- feel ha in i nen, im tur- feel ha in i coe, im tur- smell ha in i gwilith. Tul- nin na a dór i has echor róven gwilith a dúr"

No sooner did he finish speaking than a turbulent wind seemed to materialize from inside of the book, and at once the room he was in shattered into pieces that were thrown violently away from him by the winds produced by the book. He shut his eyes tight, and held onto the book securely to ensure it would not blow away. He had a feeling he would need it. Just as suddenly as it had come, the tumultuous winds died out and Elias carefully opened his eyes.

Author: bongo_58
Date: Mar 24th
Elias stared in shock at the barren landscape around him. All around him lay endless expanses of craggy, grey rock, interspersed with the occasional crater. There was nothing in sight, aside from a faint orange glow on the horizon. Where in Neopia was he? Fighting a rising sense of panic, Elias looked up to the sky.

Oh no, he thought, as he stared gobsmacked at the vast planet filling the sky above him. It was a truly awe-inspiring sight - huge oceans, forests, and mountains spread out across the surface, broken up only by the occasional cluster of twinkling lights.

Still starting aghast, he vaguely remembered a book of maps he’d studied back in Brightvale. Within it had been a detailed sketch of how Neopia might look from space. The map had been widely mocked by the Brightvalue academic community as wild speculation, but Elias was now realising it was surprisingly accurate.

That could only mean one thing. He was stranded in Kreludor, with only a magical book he could barely read for company. He opened the book, flicking swiftly through its pages. He supposed he could try reading another sentence out loud...But who knew what spell he’d accidentally cast this time?

Taking a deep breath, Elias considered his options, looking again to the distant orange glow. He had heard rumours that a community of Neopets lived on the moon - perhaps they could help him?

Well, it’s not like I’ve got a better plan, he thought. He supposed, assuming he ever did make it back to Neopia, he would at least have a story to tell to his cranky mentor. Coming to a decision, he rose to his feet and took a step forward...

How will this story end?

Author: bex2633
Date: Mar 25th
That is to say, he tried to take a step forward... but found himself catapulted weightlessly ahead. ‘This is going to take some getting used to,’ he thought. He proceeded more carefully this time toward a rather large rock formation.

He could hear what sounded like clanging in the distance ... something like mining perhaps? There were machine-like sounds... Then a VERY loud zzzzZZAAAPP...

“Okay... so not heading in that direction.” Elias looked down at the book in his hands. He was beginning to feel it was all he really had of home. ...Did he really just think that? The Lost Desert? Home? He held the tome more tightly.

Out of the corner of his eye, Elias thought he saw something move, something orange...

Startled, he whipped around completely forgetting the whole ‘gravity situation’ and jolted forward into an unexpectedly graceful somersault. There erupted what sounded like applause from all sides. Slowly more and more of them appeared from behind the rocks.

Orange grundos! There were tons of them it seemed - a whole colony!

Elias flushed until he almost quite matched the shade of his onlookers. He straightened up and clutched the book to his chest. A few of the grundos seemed to take an interest in the object and came closer. Elias squeezed his eyes closed. He was really starting to miss the Desert, the sand, the sun!

Then, all was quiet. Elias opened one eye ...then the other. Had they really all gone?


Elias turned toward the sound. One of the orange grundos had stayed behind and gestured for Elias to follow.

Elias stayed fixed to his spot.

‘PSSSSSTTT!!!’ The grundo gestured again, this time more adamantly.

Elias sighed. What had he gotten himself into? Taking a deep breath, he followed the grundo toward a rather scholarly looking metal hut. And...was that...? Elias knew that smell anywhere... Books!!

The friendly grundo pushed open the door and stood aside so as to let Elias enter.

“Erm... Hello?” Elias wasn’t quite sure who or what to expect.

A pair of orange antenna twitched from behind a stack of books.

Elias thought he heard a sigh from their general direction.

“You don't really want to buy a book do you?” A similar-looking orange grundo was now before him. His name tag said ‘Bernard’ and it was patched to a very eclectic looking yellow jacket. “Well... if you like my books that much, I guess you could join the Booktastic Book Club. ...But only if you want to.”

“Um... sorry but I’m not here about any book club... I was hoping I could find someone who could help. You see, I think a spell in this book here,” Elias raised the volume so the grundo could see, “well, I think it transported me here all the way from The Lost Desert and I’m not sure how to get myself back.”

Bernard gestured for the book and Elias, somewhat unwillingly, handed it over.

“Nope. Can’t say I understand the language... I think another try with that and you might just end up more lost...”

‘Just great,’ thought Elias.

“But, I do have the widest selection of books on Kreludor. Everyone knows that. A wealth of knowledge at your fingertips... I don’t usually do this for free, but why don’t you take these?”

Bernard reached up and grabbed two books from the pile: “Orange Grundo Survival Handbook” and “Repairing Your Ship” — he handed both to Elias.

“See that ship out back?” Bernard pointed out the window toward a sad little hunk of metal. “It hasn’t run in years... but, you read that book, you get her gears turning and, well, let’s just say I wouldn’t mind taking a vacay to The Lost Desert.”

Elias grimaced. He knew he didn’t have much of a choice. He accepted the books from Bernard and got to work under the glow of a kreludor jar lamp.

Master Aremus’s word echoed in his mind, “You may have knowledge about books, but when was the last time you actually read one? Not just to judge its value to others, but to discover its value to you?"

He supposed no two books had ever been more valuable than those he now held in his possession. And boy, would he ever have a story for Master Aremus when he returned! Indeed, as he worked meticulously through the pages, Elias vowed he would one day write about his own adventure so that it would be chronicled for all time.

Legend has it that some of Neopia’s master storytellers still speak of Elias’s tale, adding their own little spin on the Elephante’s extraordinary adventure.

The End,

Author: greenhouse_ghost
Date: Mar 26th

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