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Why I Rescue Kadoaties

by shadowcristal


I'm a nameless blue Warf from the Warf Rescue Team. It doesn't matter what my name is, only that you remember the story I tell you. Because I'm about to tell you why I rescue Kadoaties.

     If you think I do it for fun, you must be out of your mind. I hate Kadoaties. They're annoying, dainty, squeaky, attention-stealing, vain little critters that are the evil of the world, not those adorable Meepits with their cute eyes. In fact, I had a somewhat noisy argument with the last Kad that we saved.

     No. I rescue Kadoaties for Jenna. I believe we all do. After all, it was she, that little pink Warf, who got me started on this.

     I had been carelessly abandoned by my former owner, a grey Jetsam, who got an avatar petpet instead. It was pretty inevitable, seeing as how that fierce Jetsam had chomped down the last petpet he had, a poor little Cubett.

     Moping in my own sadness, I wandered around Neopia Central and reflected upon the good times we've had together, my owner and me whenever I saw a pet with their petpet. Every careful touch reminded me of my owner, and I couldn't help but to feel nostalgic though that Jetsam hadn't been very kind at all.

     It was on a cloudy day that Jenna found me. She came around the corner, skipping around happily and accidentally bumping into me. Now I know that the event had been dictated by fate, but right then I was too annoyed and sad to pay attention to this little critter who had so carelessly intruded upon my wallowing in self-pity.

     "I'm sorry," she said when she got up, helping me up too. Jenna beamed brightly at me. "You look as if..." She scratched her head with one of her little paws. "Nevermind. Do you want to help me with something? Please?"

     The way she fluttered her eyelashes in that joking way made it impossible to refuse. Jenna's kind of like a whirlwind, always able to drag everybody along her when she sets her mind to do things.

     "Um... okay," I said. Actually, I don't really remember exactly how I replied. The only thing I can recall with ease was how brightly Jenna smiled, and how her warm kindness had extended a helping hand to me. The way she pulled me out of depression with a single, light touch that lit up the bottom of the deepest wells in my grubby little soul.

     "All right," she smiled, grabbing my hand and running off to a nearby tree. A Kadoatie was sitting in the tree, meowing loudly and throwing a mini-fit. I couldn't help but to let a smile tug at the corner of my mouth. The poor little thing in the tree... It was absolutely hilarious! The Kad screeched and yelled, but she couldn't really do anything too drastic as it might make her fall off the tree.

     "Well, folks," Jenna said in that urbane manner she used when she encountered groups, "I believe we have to do something about this poor little Kaddy sitting in the tree, k-I mean, meowing..."

     Everyone surprised a fit of giggles, fully aware of what Jenna was hinting at. Only now did I notice that the pink little Warf had left me to grow big and important on a makeshift stage that had been assembled with haste moments before her arrival.

     Jenna coughed twice, pointing to the Kadoatie, who was glaring angrily at her for not being rescued. "It's time to put the Warf Rescue Team into action!"

     Those words got everybody going. That is, everybody except for me. Confused, I made my way to Jenna who explained what the Warf Rescue Team was all about. "...well, would you like to join?" she finished, just as the first Warf stood on the ground, ready to support everybody else.

     "I prefer watching," I told her, a stubborn expression glued to my face. The Warf Rescue Team thing looked a tad bit dangerous, the poor Warfs being catapulted into the air and landing on top of each other. By the time they had gotten to the evil monster lurking in the tree that shot acorns which popped the parachutes, I was stunned.

     This was definitely a team! Unlike anything I had ever experienced before, these Warfs trusted each other with their lives. One little mishap could make the whole Warf tower fall, yet it never did. Finally, Jenna let the little Kad run along to the ground where she sat down and scowled at the tower.

     "Ungrateful brat," I heard myself mutter as the Kad left the scene. The Warfs were getting down one and one, and finally they all safely stood on the ground.

     "Well?" Jenna asked, turning around to me. She had been the first one to get down, but her eyes never left the Warf tower that had been shortened so rapidly.

     "It's..." It was impossible for me to find the word that described all those emotions flowing inside me. I gulped twice, and tried again.

     "It's okay," she said when she saw me attempt. "I suppose you've never seen this before, no? Well, your face tells me everything I need to know." Jenna beamed at me. "Please, pretty please, join us!"

     "Yeah," the other Warfs murmured in agreement, standing behind Jenna like a tide that was ready to strike if I didn't obey. But it wasn't them who had me convinced, it was Jenna. Her cheerfulness had wrapped my heart the first time we spoke, and there was no way to back out of it now.

     "I'll join," I said demurely.

     "Great!" Jenna said. "This is our new recruit," she declared, as if everybody didn't already know that. They all returned her brilliant smile, though some were poor mirrors that did not even reflect half of the light that Jenna emitted.

     "We'll practice some standing first, okay?" she said, turning to me. I was happy to receive her attention, and did as she instructed.

     It wasn't that hard to learn how to stand and support everybody, but summoning the strength that was required to do this a long time, until the Kadoaties were rescued, was something else. One of the Warfs gave me tips on how to train my body so I could last longer, and they treated me kindly, which I hadn't expected. After all, Jenna was their leader and she was focusing on me...

     The catapulting bit was a bit harder, though it was exhilarating to cut through the air faster than a faerie and land. The first time I did this, I fumbled with the parachutes a bit until I got them loose. Ever since I've learned to properly care for my equipment and remind myself not to panic if I can't do it, because everyone will be down there, supporting me.

     The days went by fast, and soon I was getting in rhythm with everybody else. I no longer felt lonely and out of place, which I often did at the huge mansion my owner had resided. I learned the names of the members on our team, carefully engraving every name and personality in my heart. We were like a big family, and it was that family I had missed when I had been equipped to the nondescript owners.

     Once I chatted with Maura, and found out that she, like me, had been abandoned for an avatar petpet. The realization hit me a few days later... We were all lost in some way, but Jenna had guided us here and taught us kindness, made our lives worthwhile...

     We were now important. We had goals, tasks that were to be performed and many other things. The Kads were to be rescued, but none of us really liked them except for Jenna, and she also teased them. Kads are the evil petpets of Neopia, always climbing up trees, just for fun and sometimes to annoy us... and then they can't get down by themselves!

     Each day I tackled my job with energy, and something that I never felt while living with the Jetsam emerged. It was a joy, a joy of living, the joy of doing something important, something that I liked...

     Of course, I often thanked Jenna for rescuing me, but she just waved it away with one paw and told us to keep working with a smile. Really, the Kads weren't the only ones rescued. My newfound friends and I were rescued as well, by this kind, pink Warf named Jenna.

     So it's only correct and just that it ends happily, right? Now that I've told my story, how Jenna had helped me to discover my passion for help, how my days now turned into bubbly cheerfulness...

     Well, it wasn't all that great. Some days were rainy, and those days made Kads stink like little piles of dung, and quite often we were completely exhausted by the end of a day of rescuing. Still, I liked this odd job, and it felt nice to finally belong somewhere.

     Every tale has an ending, and so does mine. But it doesn't really end happily, and I don't think Jenna deserved her fate. The story that I've told this far was only how I got started and progressed, and please consider what I'm about to tell is the proper end of the story. After all, I'm obliged to tell the truth no matter how horrible it was, for we yearn to let the world know of the existence of a kind soul that made the world just a bit better, and perhaps justify the horrible fate that fell upon her, if only a little bit...

     It was a bright, sunny day when we were going through the good old procedures of rescuing a Kad that it happened. The coordinator who catapulted us wasn't as experienced as I would've liked, and there was one of those monstrosities shooting acorns in the middle of the tree...

     We were launched and stacked randomly, our muscles pulling in the directions and our frail bodies swaying in the wind. The Kads sat left and right, left and right, the nightmare for any Warf Team Rescuer. Our inexperienced coordinator just had to rescue every Kad and never thought about skipping some and get them later on.

     The launches were well timed, but hastily done and we were piled on top of each other diagonally like a swaying mountain of different flavored ice cream. Higher and higher we went, rescuing Kads that scowled and scratched at the annoyance of being rescued and going down us. Those stupid little things never learn...

     The final one to be catapulted was Jenna. Usually we swap around a bit for the Warf that gets to stand on top. Once or twice I got to, but usually it's Jenna since she is good at soothing those poor Kaddys. But the coordinator hadn't been careful enough, or maybe it was just a case of bad luck... Or someone up there was evil enough to play a trick on us...

     In any case, we all watched Jenna flow up high and slowly drop down by that parachute. Moments later a loud pop rung from the place she was, and we saw her rapidly falling down towards the ground. The monster in the tree that shot acorns had hit Jenna's parachute, and she was falling down with a scary speed. Several of us tried to grasp her, but none succeeded. Faster and faster she went...

     It was like a nightmare, watching Jenna fall down, unable to do anything. A loud thud on the ground ripped our hearts open, and ignoring the Kadoatie, we all looked down at her to see if she was okay.

     Several subs came rushed to help Jenna up, but she looked as if she was losing consciousness. It was all too horrible, too quick, and it had happened in an instant. As I looked at the poor little pink Warf on the ground from my place high up, I realized the risks of being a Warf Rescuer... But because of Jenna...

     She opened her mouth to speak, and her words were surprisingly strong. The fierce wind carried those whispered words up to us in the treetops. "Keep going," she said, "Get to the goal!"

     We were too stunned, but a weak gesture of hers kept us going. Another Warf was launched, and the Kad got down. Immediately we started to disassemble and tried to help, but Jenna was already being carried off. Later they said she was in a critical condition, and there was no way she could work for months...

     I'll never forget the look on her face. It was exuberant, joyful, as if she was at peace and knew that this had to be done. It displayed the usual pleasure she took in performing this task, but so much more. She never once let the pain surface as she was being carried away, and weak paws waved at us as we stood there, staring at her, and later, at each other.

     Through everything her kindness shone, from the beginning to the end. After that horrible occurrence we never saw Jenna again. They kept her away, and some of the Warfs quit the team, unable to cope with the sorrow. But I didn't.

     Jenna had taught me that one only quit when one didn't like something... She had helped me to find my passion, but it was up to me to keep it going. And I did... I mean, I do now too. The scattered remainder of the team tried to help each other, and we kept it going, attempting to find new recruits. None of us were quite as good as Jenna, though, and very often it hurt to think about her.

     But I can't forget... Because if you forget, perhaps it will happen again. If you keep it in your memory and cherish those bright, happy days dearly, that will do more good.

     Even now I lie awake at night, wondering why this terrible destiny fell upon Jenna... Why it was she, and not the rest of us, who was crippled... I would have gladly traded my place for hers, because she was just so much more. She was like a living hero, showing us that nothing was impossible. Not once did the small stature of her show, because she was always a leader, someone who cared, and that kindness made her much bigger than us.

     After that, I guess I learned some things too. Instead of just doing my part, I tried to do more. Like Jenna. I had never tried before, but with her absence, a black hole was left there to be filled. We all tried filling it as much as we could, but left a spot for Jenna. After all, you don't frantically try to cover it up, you let time slowly heal the wounds...

     That's why I rescue Kadoaties. Because of Jenna, and because I can be like Jenna. I think there might be a Jenna in all of us, just waiting to get out, do kind deeds and help. After all, it feels so much better to be helping somebody, and that rewards happiness in return.

     Someday, I do hope that Jenna can join us again, but perhaps it is a futile hope. She has taught me so many things, and there is no way I can make that up. But I still try, and I try teaching others those good things...

     And now I know that my life has a purpose, that I'm here to do something important. Life is kind of like the Warf Rescue Team... You'll have to rely on each other, trust, share, and you'll miss sometimes. Hopefully you won't miss that fatally as Jenna did.

     So that's why we rescue Kads. To keep that memory fresh, to continue to serve others. Maybe, maybe just one day, Jenna will join us again. We all cherish those memories, and try to create new, happy ones to be remembered.

     Yeah, I guess I love rescuing Kadoaties, despite that. There are risks associated with everything, after all. But that doesn't mean that I love Kads. I hate them, and if you'll excuse me, I'll go and argue with that Kad up there in a moment.

The End.

Author's Note: The title of this story was graciously taken from an article written by ezrhide, who gave me permission to use it. Thank you so very much! I hope you enjoyed reading my story, and comments, constructive criticism etc will be greatly appreciated. :)

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