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Neopia's Fill in the Blank News Source | 14th day of Eating, Yr 26
The Neopian Times Week 108 > Short Stories > The Field

The Field

by roxycaligirl101

I could spend hours sitting in a field; watching the tall, emerald grass slowly sway back in forth in the wind; feeling a cool breeze on my fur, and listening to the Beekadoodles sing their majestic songs. I walk through the field to the same spot, I always go to. I've been there so many times I could trot there with my eyes closed. The tall, grass tickles my stomach as I walk. I reach the spot and let my hooves collapse from under me, and fall backward. I lay down on back and stare up at the blue sky and lazy, puffy clouds. A smile spreads as the cloud forms the shape of a Kau in the sky, it reminds me of my grandmother.

     I shift my body so I can see over the grass, I look toward a grove of trees on the other side of the field. My grandparent's cottage is hidden beyond the trees. My grandmother is the only person who can understand how I like to spend hours just laying or sitting in a field. Everyone else in my family thinks I am just lazy, that I am just trying to hide from doing the chores around the farm. It's not that I mind chores, I just like the field better. The jumbled and confused mind always seems to sort itself out, when I enter the field. It makes me forget everything that went during that day, it's just a place to escape. My family thinks it's a place to escape work, but it's a place to escape everyone else. The constant teasing from the amusement of coming from the family of family of shadowed Kaus, but I was born with fur the color of sky. My grandmother once told me, my mother loved my blue fur. She always wished she could be the color of the sky, instead of the color of night. My grandmother told me my fur was a gift, but it's a curse. Not only do I feel like an outsider in my home, I am constantly teased at school. There are only twelve pets at our school and I am teased by ten of them.

     "Pri!" a familiar voice calls my name, and I press my body against the ground. It's my brother's voice that calls to me. Jett is one of those pets that does tease me at school, I am never good enough for him. I believe he always wanted a brother, it was quite a disappointment when he got me. "Pri, I know you are out here!" I ignore the voice and concentrate on the melodies of the Beekadoodles. "Pri!" I stare at the sky as my heart races, I haven't heard my name called in several minutes. I slowly peek over the grass, to see my brother trotting toward the orchard. I watch until he disappears and I jump to my hooves and take off toward the woods. I can't risk my brother returning with my father, I would be in so much trouble. My father believes that life was made to work, and I think there must be more to life. I told him once that and he wasn't pleased. I believe that if I do my morning chores, I should have the rest of the day off. My father agrees, as long as I do something productive with my time, sitting in a field isn't his idea of productive.

     I enter the woods and walk to the familiar dirt path away from my grandparent's house deep into the familiar woods. I've been in the woods a million times, and I never get sick of it. I know I shouldn't be wandering in the woods by myself; my father would be furious if he found me in the woods by myself. He would be even angrier if he saw me sitting in a field, I'll take my chances in the woods. The woods protect me when my field cannot, but unlike my field where I can see anyone who approaches, I cannot see who is around the next bend. The path begins to spilt into two, and I wonder which one to take. The one that leads to the swimming hole or the creek. The only pets who go to the creek are pfishers. Elderly pets spend hours in the sun waiting to catch an aquatic petpet to sell at the General Store, the only store for miles. The swimming hole is the popular place, where all my classmates gather. I really don't mind the swimming hole, I like to go at dinner time. Most of the pets who favor teasing me have left and it's just me floating in the water. It's not even close to dinner, so I choose the path toward the creek.

     As I walk down the path slowly, I hear voices ahead. I shrug them off, thinking it's just of the elders of Farmington. I'll yell a hello to them and scream a conversation, because if you're elderly and live in Farmington; you're probably close to deaf. Another thing about living in the small, town of Farmington is you know everyone.

     "Stop!" a voice demands from behind me. I spin around to see a familiar green Wocky, my eyes instantly narrows at the sight of him. He is always sneaking up on me. "What are you doing out in the woods by yourself, Princess?"

     "The name is Pri!" I snap. I don't let anyone call me by my real name and I defiantly won't let this vile Wocky use it. "What are you doing here, Seth?" I ask, with a tone of disgust. I can't stand this Wocky for a second, his family owns a Negg Farm. His family owns more land and more money, than anyone else in Farmington. In addition, his father is mayor and his great-great-great-great-great-really great grandfather founded Farmington. The Neggals walk around Farmington as though they are royalty, even though they are no better than anyone else. Seth was the worst of the whole family, he treated everyone else around him like dirt; I was his favorite victim.

     "Just strolling in my woods."

     "Your woods?"

     "My family's woods to be correct and you're trespassing." Seth leers and circles around me. "Did you know trespassing is illegal?"

     "I did know it, but..." Before I can finish Seth swoops in to cut me off,

     "There is a fine for trespassing. It's a hundred Neopoints! Pay up you trespasser."

     "I don't have a hundred Neopoints, besides I wasn't..." He cuts me off again,

     "You don't have a hundred Neopoints?" he laughs hysterically. "I feel bad for you having no Neopoints and growing up on a pitiful excuse of a farm." My cheeks flame red with anger.

     "My family's farm is not pitiful. It's one of the best apple farms in the entire world of Neopia," I state proudly, the statement just made him laugh even more.

     "Blue, you crack me up." I grind my teeth angrily, I always hate it when pets call me Blue. I do have a name. "You should consider becoming the Farmington Jester. My daddy and I might even pay to laugh, possibly enough to save the pitiful piece of land you call a farm." I turn away and begin to walk towards the creek. "Blue, you didn't pay your fine," he calls in a sing song voice and I ignore him and keep on walking. He dives in front of me his voice filled with rage, "I mean it Blue. Pay up!" I stop and watch as his paws form into fists. "Don't make me hurt you." I push my hooves deep into the dirt; I am ready to defend myself. Not only do I have quite a kick and my horns that could slice through a pumpkin. I've been fighting with my older brother for years, and this Wocky shouldn't be any problem.

     "Don't mess with me, Seth," I warn, ready to protect myself if he strikes.

     "I ain't scared, Blue," Seth replies as he charges forward ready to punch me. I shift my weight and close my eyes ready to receive the blow, but it never happens. I open my eyes to see a yellow Gelert on the ground, his paw on his left eye. He dove in and shielded me and took the hit from Seth.

     "Berrik!" I cry and rush to his side. "Are you all right?" He nods as I turn to Seth. He stares there dumbfounded that he hit the wrong pet. The shock turns to cockiness.

     "Berrik, you stupid mongrel. You know better than to get into a fight with me. My Pa' just might swoop down and buy poor, old Mrs. Baker's land. Wouldn't that be awful? That'd mean you were really didn't have a home," Seth taunts. "I forgot, you are already without a home."

     "You dirty rich Tigermouse," Berrik yells and jumps to his paws ready to strike. "I am going to make you pay for messing with Pri and insulting me!" Berrik advances with clenched paws and I stop him.

     "Don't. He's not worth it," I cry and he tries to go around me, but I stop him. He stares into my pleading eyes, but my eyes can do nothing rage has taken control of his body.

     "Don't listen to Princess Blue," Seth tells him. "I'll give you another, come on!" The rage disappears and Berrik lowers his paws, he isn't going to fight. "Coward," Seth spits as he walks off toward the creek. Berrik stands still breathing harder than I've ever seen.

     "Are you okay?" I ask timidly.

     "Fine," Berrik snaps instantly. "I'll walk you home."

     "You don't have to, I can take care of myself."

     "Just like you did a few minutes ago?"

     "You didn't give me a chance to defend myself. I've been brawling with my brother since the day I entered this world, I can handle myself in a fight."

     "You know what? It doesn't matter. He's scum, especially for going to hit a girl. I am poor orphan and I have better class than him."

     "You do," I agree. We begin the walk back to my farm. I don't know how I'd survive without Berrik, he's one of my only friends in Farmington. He gets teased a lot just like me, I guess the outsiders find strength in numbers. Berrik is an orphan who was adopted by old Mrs. Baker. Her husband passed away many years ago, and she never had any children of her own. She wanted someone to take over the farm when she died, so she adopted Berrik when he was a mere Gelert pup. Mrs. Baker can't take of the farm by herself anymore so she needs Berrik to help her. "Thanks for back there, even though I could have taken care of him."

     Anytime, Pri," he replies with a huge smile, but disappears quickly when he warns me. "You shouldn't be wandering in the woods by yourself. There are far worse things than Seth in the woods."

     "Those are just legends the elders make up to keep the babies out of the woods."

     "Maybe, maybe not."

     "You believe in those stories of ghosts, thieves, and other nonsense?"

     "I've seen a lot before I came to Farmington. You've never left this small protected town."

     "I have too," I protested. "I've been to Green Hills!"

     "Green Hills is an even more smaller town than this one," Berrik informs me. "You should really go to the Neopian Central one of these days.

     "I would but my father won't let him. He probably let my brother go though, if he wanted to, but Jett would rather stay in Farmington for the rest of his life," I tell him as we walk out of the woods. I don't notice but my brother and father are standing in the middle of my field. I don't notice them till I hear my brother's familiar and serious voice.

     "Pri, where have you been?" Jett asks.

     "No where," I reply.

     "See Father, she is just wasting her time. She could be doing something valuable besides wandering in woods that shouldn't be wandered in."

     "Pri, what have you been doing?" my father asks, his cold, navy eyes stare at me. I do not answer, I cannot tell my father the truth. If he hears the truth, he'll be really angry. His eyes fall on to Berrik at my side. "Berrik, what happened to your eye?" I look the eye that Seth punched is now purple and swollen.

     "I was in a bit of a fray, sir." Berrik admits. Upon hearing this a rare thing happens, a crooked grin spreads across my father's normally stern, emotionless face.

     "I had a bit of those when I was younger," my father tells him. "Boys will just be boys."

     "Yes, sir."

     "Did you win?"

     "No, sir."

     "Don't worry you will get him next time."

     "Yes, sir."

     "Berrik, thank you for escorting my daughter home. She knows better than to wander in the woods by herself, I'm glad that you found her before anything happened to her."

     "Your welcome, sir."

     "Pri, don't you have something to say to Berrik?"

     "I already thanked him, Father," I answer.

     "Pri!" My father's voice hisses.

     I sigh, "Thank you for walking me home, Berrik."

     "Anytime, Pri."

     "We'll see bright in early tomorrow, right?" Jett asks.

     "I'll be here to help," Berrik says.

     "Help with what?" I question.

     "Planting, we are going to plant a whole new section. This field is worthless, might as well use it." My jaw drops in shock, how could they do this? Take away my haven? My one place to escape? I cannot not protest, I know my father's word is final. There is nothing I can do.

     "Say goodbye to your precious field," Jett sneers.

     "Pri, you are not allowed to leave the house for the next week, not even to visit your grandparents or go to school. Since you like to sit around so much, this punishment should be a vacation for you. Now, go!" my father tells me.

     I whisper a goodbye to Berrik as I rush off toward the house, hidden behind the orchard, trying not to cry. The one place I need, the one place where I am normal is gone. The woods aren't the haven; with Seth and my other classmates around every corner to start trouble. I don't know what to do anymore. My mind is jumbled with emotions and ideas; I would normally go to my field to sort it out and see the clear picture but my field will be gone soon. I am not allowed to even go to say goodbye. It must seem odd to want to say goodbye to a piece of land, but it has given me so much without even knowing it I have to do something to repay the field. I wish I could be able to lay down, feel the cool breeze and watch the grass sway. I want to hear the songs of Beekadoodles and to have a clear mind for a last time before it's taken away.

     I enter our big, white farmhouse. I race up the stairs, disappear into my room, and fling myself on my bed. I don't want to see anyone right now. My grandmother can understand everything about me, but right now I just don't think she'd understand anything.

     Hours and hours have passed. The sky is dark now, stars glittering overhead and a full moon looks down on Farmington. I listen carefully, making sure no is awake. I've been in my room for hours, and I am going to leave. I slide out of bed carefully and creep down the stairs. I walk to the kitchen and grab my coat off the hook. I slide on the worn, black coat and slip out the door into the night. I trot through the farm carefully and swiftly. I use the moonlight as a candle. My senses alert and searching for any signs of danger or getting caught. I walk through the lines of the shadowy apple trees and to my field. It's normally empty, but someone stands there tonight. It's a dark Kau wearing a shawl of gold, it's my grandmother. I go to her and whisper,

     "Grandmother, I..." She looks at me, I can't finish my sentence. I can't explain why I came to the field tonight.

     "I won't tell your father you were here, Pri. You don't need to explain anything to me," my grandmother replies. "I understand. You aren't the only one who wants to say goodbye." I nod and we stand in the field mentally saying our goodbyes. We feel the grass tickle our stomachs one last time. It seems such a waste to destroy such a valuable treasure, to put up apple trees for profit. There is nothing we can do but just say our goodbyes and remember every last detail about the field because it will be gone tomorrow.

The End

To everyone who has a field of their own.

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