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Purple Pebble: Part One

by mygoodguild


Feri kicked the ground with a forlorn look on her face as dust clouded up around her. She coughed, not listening to the faraway cries of her older sister, Ollie. The latter was worried about Feri, but Feri didn't care. She sat down in the dust. The blue Chomby was feeling left out and hopeless. She felt like no one needed her and that no one cared. But ah, pets did care about her.

     "Feri!" Ollie called at the top of her lungs. She bounced around on her tail. "Feri the Chomby! I need you!" Ollie flung herself down, also feeling hopeless. She had been trailing her younger sister for hours, but could never seem to catch up. It was harder on a tail. Feri had four, sturdy legs, while Ollie the Blumaroo only had a flimsy tail. "Feri!" Ollie called again, looking out for miles. She could see the speck of her sister lying on the horizon. She was lying! Ollie sprinted towards her sister, but she never seemed to be getting closer, even though Ollie was not moving...

     Some time later, Ollie stood over Feri, casting shadows on the latter from the hot desert sun. "What time is it?" inquired Feri, looking up into the shadows and squinting at the rays of sun that peeped through.

     "How should I know? We're in the middle of the Lost Desert for crying out loud!" Ollie said indignantly.

     "Excuse me. What a nice way to treat someone you've made yourself hoarse over for the past hours," Feri mumbled, rolling over on the ground and into a standing position. Then: "I wish we hadn't come to the Lost Desert. It's monotonous here. The only view is the sun, the sky, and the sand for miles. I am burning up and there is no water. We need water. Dehydration, Ollie, dehydration!"

     "I know. Get up. Let's walk around a tad longer and see what we can do, okay?" Ollie asked, starting to bounce around on her tail.

     They went for a longer way, for a much longer time, until Feri collapsed again. Ollie fell down beside her younger sister and asked: "Are you okay? Why did you fall?"

     Feri could only point. She stretched her Chomby foot towards the distance. Ollie looked. "Oh, it's an oasis! Look at all that water!"

     Soon they were both standing under that wonderful panorama themselves, thinking of what a wonderful picture it make: the palm trees, the hot red sand, and the little shallow water, surrounded by rocks covered in moss.

     "It's perfect here; I could just stay," Ollie murmured. She rested her head on a rock.

     "I agree. Let's," said Feri.

     "Oh, don't be silly! I was only ragging you. C'mon now!" Ollie declared.

     They both drank until they felt bloated, then splashed in the water a bit. They rested on an off, cooling their warm and leathery skin and scales.

     "Look at that rock," Feri said suddenly, gesturing to a shiny and polished-looking pebble. It was purple and emitting glowing rays of light.

     "Oh my," Ollie said.

     Feri ran her finger across the rock's smooth surface. She realized how soft it was, like a rock you could buy at a shop. That's how polished and touched-up it looked. But as Feri inspected it further, she realized that no one had tampered with this rock - it was in its original state. Feri could just sense that this was factual. She tossed the rock up in the air and caught it again.

     "Yes. This thing... Well, it's glowing! I've never seen a rock that glows. Oh, Ollie... What's it called? I think you learned this in Neoschool. Um, is it, like, phosphorous? Or whatever?" Feri asked.

     "I don't know what the asparagus that thing is, but I do know that it could probably sell for a lot."

     Feri looked at her older sister in disgust. "All you think about is money! Seriously... We're not selling this thing. It's my rock. I found it. I saw it first."

     Ollie shook her head. "You know how much Tay needs help earning neopoints. Please, let's sell it, and buy her something expensive, like a morphing potion she has always wanted! She has given us so much in return: painted us baby, trained us, fed us, and kept us joyful..."

     "No! You want the money for yourself. You know perfectly well Tay told us not to worry about money, that she had PLENTY for us to live on. Painted US baby? Trained US? Fed US? Me, JOYFUL? No, I think you're talking about how she treats you. You're the oldest pet, and she loves you best. Face it. I'm not getting painted. Ever. Just watch me become a lab rat one day. You never would be put through that torment. And she's never trained me. She wouldn't waste a measly dubloon on me! And she feeds you a gazillion times more than me. Even when she does feed me, I get poisonous jellies and burnt food! And look at me. Do I look joyful? I haven't been joyful all day long!" Feri exclaimed, getting very angry.

     See what greed can do?

     "I am oldest. I should be in charge of the rock. And besides, why were you such a snot earlier?" Ollie asked. After Feri didn't respond, she drummed her fingers on the air. "Well?"

     "Because you're better than me! No one cares about me," Feri sobbed. She burst into tears.


     But Feri had already clutched the purple stone tightly in her hand. She was already running across the Lost Desert, leaving a trail of tears behind her. Ollie started humming a little song about torrents of tears and rain mixing to make friendship and cheerfulness. It was indeed a strange tune.

     Meanwhile, Ollie was standing by the clear pond until the trees, speechless. She shook her head and sat back down again. Feri was too emotional in all the bad ways. She always got upset too easily. But she'd be back. Once night fell, oh, she'd be running back.

     Feri was watching the sunset. She nibbled on the rock a little - almost suspecting it to be edible, or possibly thinking it could be some substance like gold: the more actual and honest gold that was in gold, the more valuable the gold was. Well, Feri thought maybe it was the same for the pebble. She licked it one or twice, and then gasped.

     "Why! I'll be asparagized! This tastes like pure sugar - kind of like cotton candy!" Feri exclaimed, jumping to her feet. "Oh, magical stone. I know you are magical - I can feel it, throbbing deep inside my chest, oh, stone." Feri looked at it again. "Tell me your powers."

     She wondered what powers it could possibly have. It must have something. Feri thought for several moments, until a shadow darkened her view. What was that? Rain cloud? No. Not in the Lost Desert. Animal? Feri looked up.

     "What in the world are you doing?" Ollie asked, making a face at her younger sister.

     "Don't go around making shadows over people like that!" Feri exclaimed. Then, much calmer: "Don't you think this stone is magic?"

     "You silly duckling! Of course it's not. That's absurd. Rocks aren't magical. There is no such thing as magic," Ollie lectured.

     "There is in my... Never mind," Feri said. She was going to say: There is in my heart. Maybe your heart is cold and magicless, but mine sure isn't.

     "We'd better get out of here - look at the sky. It's as grey as ever. I think we should be going back to the puddle now, what do you say?" Ollie asked. She noticed Feri looking softly at the rock. "You can bring your 'magic' stone with you, too, I guess. Just don't annoy me with it - no, don't annoy the asparagus out of me, okay, Feri?"

     Feri stood up to join her sister, but she didn't say anything. The pebble was sitting cozily in her palm, which was closed tightly around it.

     Soon they were back to the pond, sitting on mossy rocks under palm trees. They had made it just in time: the sky was growing blacker by the moment.

     "Why do you think this rock is magic?" Ollie asked suddenly.

     "I feel it in my gut," Feri responded.

     "No, you think it in your mind. It's called a creative mind. No, your mind is TOO creative. Over-creative overactive mind," said Ollie.

     "Look. Hush! Stop, hush it!" Feri screamed, suddenly. "Shush," she said after all was quiet, to no one in particular. "Look at the stone - it's jiggling. And the purple is the brightest and glowiest color!"

     The two sisters both sat in awe, watching the jiggling rock. Its purple color lit up the whole Lost Desert, for now the sky was pitch black. The rock seemed to be saying something, beckoning them. The rock began to jump up and down, while the purple color was still growing.

     "Well, maybe it is magic," Ollie whispered, staring intently at the stone.

To be continued...

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