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Neopia's Fill in the Blank News Source | 21st day of Swimming, Yr 26
The Neopian Times Week 85 > Short Stories > Addiction and Back – The Dangers of Scratchcards

Addiction and Back – The Dangers of Scratchcards

by umbra_lupus

My Uni had a big problem. Scratchcards. Lunacyinblue (Lunacy for short) was addicted to the little bits of card. It all started when we found in a random event. We were just walking around Neopia Central, enjoying the sun when Lunacy spotted it.

     "Do you see that?" she asked.

     "Lunacy, is this another of your great, it's a twig things?" I said sarcastically.

     "No silly, there, that shiny thing. Oh, look at it, its so shiny…"

     She looked at the object, fascinated.

     "It's just a scratchcard, Lunacy, leave it alone."

     "What's a scratchcard?" Lunacy asked, puzzled.

     "Well, you scratch six of the silver panels off and if you get three matching symbols you win a prize."

     "Oooooh, money!" she cried and promptly ran over the scratchcard and snatched it up.

     "Lunacy, I want to go home," I said with dismay.

     Lunacy scratch furiously silver dust flying everywhere.

     "I won! I won!" she yelled, waving the card in the air.

     "Let me guess, you won a bit of air. Three blanks don't count, Lunacy."

     "No, Lupus, I have three 10,000's."

     "What?!?!?! Let me see that," I shouted at the now bewildered Uni.

     I snatched the card from her and carefully scrutinised it. She was right. She had won 10,000 NPs! For once Lunacy was telling the truth. I jumped up and down and we both did a little dance of victory. Passers by stared at us as if we had grown extra heads and started to walk faster.

     The first thing we did with our new Neopoints was fit up our NeoHome then we split the remaining Neopoints. I spent my money on toys for Lunacy while she bought a pile of dung, a few twigs (What a sad Uni, eh?) and more scratchcards. It was all innocent at first but as she bought more her need for them grew.

     "Wahoo! I won!"

     This time it was plushie. I ventured in her room and saw that everything was coated in a fine silver dust.

     "How many scratchcards did you buy, Lunacy?"

     "Erm? Well, Lupus, the first scratchcard got me 5,000 NPs so I bought a few more and they won too, so I bought some more…"

     "Hey, can you just tell me how many you bought?"

     "About a 100," she said sheepishly.

     "LUNACY!"

     She looked at me from under her long eyelashes, puppy dog eyes turned to full.

     "I'm sorry, Lupus. I didn't mean to. And all the Neopoints, I'm sorry about that too."

     "W… w… what money?"

     "I cleared out the bank account," she muttered.

***

The next day she had me traipsing up to Terror Mountain. She pulled me past Happy Valley into the ice caves and then past the Neggery. I attempted to see if could steal a negg from the Snowager was asleep only to be dragged past the sleeping beast.

     "Lunacy, we could have got a negg then."

     "No negg. Only scratchcards."

     I shook my head. "You need help."

     We finally got to the Kiosk after hours of trudging through snowdrifts and my fingers were almost frost-bitten. Lunacy charged forward, excitement taking over. When I finally caught up with her she was laying on the floor, sobbing.

     "What's wrong, Lunacy?"

     "Out to lunch, Lupus!" she wailed. "Out to lunch!"

     "So we wait then."

     "Can't wait. Need scratchcards. No wait. Need scratchcards," she muttered under her breath.

     "Well I did hear about these new scratchcards…"

     "Where?" she asked sharply.

     "Down in the Deserted Fairground."

     Lunacy took me by the hand and took off at a sprint.

     As we got nearer, she got more desperate. Her eyes started twitching from side to side and her hands scratched an invisible card.

     She became more agitated as the journey wore on. At one point she barged past a Faerie who was in the middle of giving her a quest mumbling; "No quest. Only scratchcard. Need scratchcard to live."

     When we got to the Deserted Fairground, Sidney was waiting.

     "Care for a twig?" he asked.

     I honestly thought that Lunacy was the only one with the obsession with twigs.

     "Stupid twigs!" she yelled. "Want scratchcard."

     Sidney was almost knocked over by the Uni with scratchcard withdrawal symptoms who collided with him at great speed. He handed over the scratchcard after Lunacy jammed 1,200 of MY hard earned Neopoints into his hand.

     "We really need to get this sorted," I commented while she scratched at the card and discarded it after finding 5 blanks and a gravestone.

     "Stupid scratchcard," she told the air.

     The next day I took her a hypnotist. Already, she was shaking from gambling withdrawal and trying to bribe everything in sight for a scratchcard. I had refused to give her any even though she had ranted and raved all night long.

     The hypnotist dangled his watch in front of my face.

     "It's the Uni that wants fixing not me," I snapped.

     The hypnotist, who was the very same mad old scientist from the lab ray, turned to look at Lunacy, who was looking in every nook and cranny of his office for scratchcards. He walked over to her and dangled his watch before her eyes. It now looked suspiciously like a scratchcard. Lunacy's eyes followed the watch/scratchcard as it swung to and fro.

     "You are feeling very sleepy," he whispered.

     I didn't see how he was going to make Lunacy any better, the scientist was mad already and probably wouldn't have thought there was anything odd with her even if she had started to bark.

     "Your eyes are like lead. You are very sleepy."

     Lunacy shut her eyes.

     "When you wake you will no longer wish for any more scratchcards. When I click my fingers, you will awaken."

     He clicked his fingers and Lunacyinblue's eyes snapped open.

     "How do you feel?" he asked.

     Lunacy lent her neck forward and clucked.

     "Oh brother," I sighed.

     I ended up taking Lunacy to the Healing Springs to see what the Faerie there could do. The Faerie waved a graceful hand over Lunacy.

     "Is she fixed?" I asked.

     "Watch."

     The Faerie pulled out a scratchcard and waved it in front of Lunacy. Then she picked a twig up from the floor.

     "Oooh," said Lunacy, her eyes shining with joy. "That's a nice twig."

     I finally had my happy go lucky Uni back.

     Lunacy's room is now filled to the brim with twigs and odd bits of wood. At least they don't cost 1,200 NP each, we get them for free. Lunacy usually snaps them off the Brain Tr- but…um… we won't go into that will we, Lunacy?

     "Cluck!"

     Guess we won't.

     So remember kids, don't let your pets get addicted to gambling or you might end up with a clucking pet too.

The End

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