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Neopia's Fill in the Blank News Source | 15th day of Swimming, Yr 26
The Neopian Times Week 50 > Short Stories > Leisure Suit Lenny

Leisure Suit Lenny

by shidi

Image by thephoenixofeio

LEONARD K. FEATHERSTEIN lived in the basement of his parent's NeoHome in downtown Neopia Central. All his life, Leonard-or Lenny, as everyone but his grandfather called him-dreamed about one thing, and one thing only--disco! When he was just a fledgling, and all the other little ones were saying words like "Ma-Ma" and "Da-Da", Lenny's first word was "Groovy." In his teen years, while all the other kids were papering their walls with posters of M*ynci and Chomby and the Fungus Balls, Lenny's walls were covered with retro posters of Ptelvis Ptersley, Brucey Hendrix, and Led Zafara. His friends tried to persuade him to take up more popular music tastes, but Lenny insisted that older music was "just as hip, man." Needless to say, he wasn't very popular amongst his peers.

     When Lenny got older, his basement became known as "The Groovy Love Nest", according to the carefully lettered sign on the door that no one but him and his parents ever really saw. He decorated his "Groovy Love Nest" with lava lamps, funky furniture, and a very meditative Zen Rug. One corner of the room (right under the Ptelvis Ptersley poster) was completely covered in rainbow beanbags (which looked much smaller out of the package, hence, the need for many). Lenny had even persuaded his mother to give him a fur weave from the Hair Club for Pets on last Gadgadsbogen. Now above his striped feathers he wore his black hair, a carefully Hair-Gelled and sprayed pompadour.

     One day, while Lenny was admiring himself in the tiger-striped mirror that hung over his bed, his mother, Mrs. Featherstein, burst in with some disturbing news. "Leonard!" she snapped. "I've got some disturbing news for you."

     "Mellow, Mum. Like... get down and groovy. No need for the influx of negative vibes and uptight-like funk in the Groovy Love Nest," Lenny said, holding up the peace sign.

     "I am not getting down with anything, Leonard. You're getting old enough to support yourself, and either move out of this basement, or pay rent."

     Lenny gasped, shocked. This was most un-groovy.

     "Yes, Leonard. The time has come for you to get… a job."

     "Nooo! Man, Mum. A job would like… totally cramp my style, you dig?" But Lenny's mother wasn't listening. She just handed him a packed lunch, in a little brown bag with "Lenny" clearly labeled on the front, and the latest issue of The Neopian Times so that he might hunt through it to search for likely jobs to apply for. With a rustle of her ruffled feathers, she escorted him to the door, and locked him out of the house.

     "Mum!" he wailed, pounding on the door. "I don't even have my hair gel! Can't we like, discuss this over a nice cup of mint tea?"

     There was no answer.

     Lenny opened the sack to see what his mother had packed for him. Inside was a can of Neocola, a ham and cheese sandwich, a red apple, and two lousy NP.

     "My funky train has just derailed the groove track…" Lenny said, sadly walking down the road towards the marketplace. What kind of job could he get? Preening and singing along to old music weren't exactly valuable job skills, after all. He eyed The Neopian Times, hoping to see a help wanted, but all he saw were the usual articles. "How to Make NP by Hanging Around and Playing Games" didn't hold his attention well (he wasn't good at games). The "Which Neopet are You?" quizzes were of no help; he was pretty sure which pet he was, and he didn't need to get in touch with his inner Lenny. The article about the lack of plumbing in NeoHome bathrooms was sort of amusing and interesting, but it certainly didn't help in getting a job (except to remind him that he was no good at plumbing, either.).

     "Who reads this stuff anyhow?" Lenny groused. "I guess I could apply for a job at The Neopian Times, but that'd be pretty UN-groovy and cramp my style most heinously." He was about to chuck the paper away, when he remembered two things. One, the Chia Police could bust you for littering. And two, this week the paper was sponsored by the Clothing Shop. "Clothes! I can get a job there, because my style is so keen."

     Lenny grooved on into the clothing shop and pranced over to the Uni behind the counter. "Hey baby, nice horn," he said, trying out his best moves. "Come here often?"

     "I own this place," she snorted tersely, making a small whinny of annoyance. "Can I help you?"

     "You can help me, honey, but who's going to help you when you fall head over hooves for the funky groove-master Lenny?" Lenny gave a winning smile, and flexed his wings.

     "Puh-lease. If you're not here to buy something, get out!" she snapped.

     "Well, actually, I was here for a...." Lenny paused a moment, forgetting why he had originally come in as he saw his salvation out of the corner of one beady little eye. A perfect white leisure suit, with big lapels and 100% genuine polyester goodness, was sitting there like the Coltzan's Shrine of the discount clothing rack. "Hunka hunka burning love!"

     "Of all the nerve! Why, I'll have you know that-"

     "Not you, babe. That suit! It's perfect! How much is it?" Lenny rushed over to the leisure suit and embraced it fondly, feeling its stiff polyester folds against his feathers.

     "Just take it and get out!" the Uni snapped, at the end of her patience.

     "Thanks!" said Lenny, snagging the suit off the rack and heading with it for the door. He was going to be the funkiest groove bird in town with this suit on! He couldn't wait until he got home-and probably, his mother still wouldn't let him in there, anyhow-so he got into the suit right outside the building.

     "I am the most, oh yes, I am. I'm the Lenny of Leisure, in my funkadelic suit." He pranced on down the road towards his favourite hangout, Manny Moehog's Disco Groove Shack, hoping to impress some of the regulars with his new threads.

     When he got inside, a terrible sight and lack of sound was waiting for him. There was no disco ball shining light, no dancing from the stunned disco-painted pets, and no groovy music at all. The owner of the club, a disco Moehog named Manny, was sobbing quietly to himself in one corner. Lenny frowned, and hurried over to see what was the matter. "Manny - what's with the waterworks, my psychedelic compadre?"

     "It's just awful, Lenny! Our Ptelvis Ptersley impersonator quit, and now we've got no one to sing the funky tunes for our patronage. They're going to revolt, man... it'll be like some paisley and love bead revolution. They're all going to go get painted faerie and start hanging out at Chatty Chomby's Coffee Cafe Manny slumped his head to the table and started sobbing bitterly.

     "Don't worry, my main Moehog. Your troubles are over. I, Leonard Featherstein, will groove on over to that stage and do the best Ptelvis Ptersley impersonation this town has ever seen! I need a job, and you need a Ptelvis - it's the perfect combination."

     "But everyone knows Ptelvis is a Pteri! You're too tall!" Manny cried. "And not to mention, you're not even painted disco!"

     Lenny got a wistful look in his eye, and wiped away a tear. He had often wished that Lennys could be painted disco at the Rainbow Pool, but alas, it could not be. He was about to give up, and head dejectedly for the door, when suddenly, he saw a flash of bright light. It was like that time he'd eaten a floatyshroom from the now gone Apothecary-everything got swirlly and trippy. Suddenly, there was the ghost of Ptelvis, floating right in front of him and eating a greasy Ultimate Burger. "Ahhh! Bad shroom!" screamed Lenny.

     "Ah! Screaming Lenny, man!" Ptelvis yelled right back. "Mellow out, young groovemeister."

     "Whoa... I can't believe it... I'm really talking to Ptelvis."

     "Believe it," said Ptelvis, between bites of his burger. "Now, what you need to do is carry on my legend, uh-huh. The groove is inside of you, not outside. It doesn't matter what colour you're painted, or what species you are. The spirit of funk lives within you, young Lenny. Go forth, gyrate your tail feathers, and give them a good show!"

     "Wow! I will! Thanks, Ptelvis."

     "No, thank you, Lenny. Thank you very much." With a loud sizzle and pop, the ghost was gone, leaving behind only the faint scent of burgers in the air.

     "Lenny... Lenny... are you all right?" Manny called, waving a hand in front of him.

     "Out of my way, Moehog. I'm a bird on a mission!" Lenny cried, and strutted for the stage. Manny lit up the disco ball, and the light shone brightly off of Lenny's white leisure suit. It was just like faerie magic, without the faeries, and the magic.

     Lenny stepped up to the mike and began to croon. Everyone in the disco cheered, and began to dance. Lenny sang all night, wonderful classic songs like "Blue Swayed Shoyru", "Love me Ptender", and "You Ain't Nothin' But a Gelert". By the end of the night, he not only had a job, he also had something much more valuable-the knowledge that any pet could make his dreams come true, no matter what colour he was painted. As Lenny stepped of the stage that night, to the sound of thundering applause, he remembered and repeated the wise words of Ptelvis-"Thank you. Thank you very much."

The End


Author's Note: The Lenny referred to in this tale is Leisure_Suit_Lenny, owned by WizardofAus. Any resemblance to actual personas that can be found in such figures as Ptelvis Ptersley is intentional for the sake of humour only. Please feel free to Neomail me with your comments about this story, and thanks for reading.

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