Stuck in Transfer - No More
Hi, my name is Martin, and I’m stuck in transfer.
While walking my usual round around my seventh home, sad and miserable, I suddenly felt very strange. I looked closely at my skin. My colour was fading from MSP to... BLUE! I didn't know what to say, what to think, what to... feel. I was now a regular blue Poogle. Oh no! What would my owner say when he saw me? What would he do to me now? I was about to find out. There was only one way out of this.
Hi, my name is Martin, and I'm stuck in the pound.
My owner wasn't very happy to see me as a blue Poogle. He said that he didn't want me anymore, because I was blue. I was an MSP Poogle when he traded me for one of his own pets and since I wasn't a pet that he could trade around with, he said that I couldn't stay with him.
We walked to the pound, and he abandoned me. He didn't say much, but I knew he was angry. I didn't know if he was angry at me or the fact that he had traded away one of his pets for me.
"That'll teach him," I thought, and laughed a little.
The pound isn't quite as scary as the transfer station, although there are more pets here and all of them are so very sad. Many of them were crying, even. I spent a long time in the pound; it felt like weeks, and I got the chance to talk to some of the pets that had been in the pound for years.
A red Eyrie could tell me that he's been in the pound for months, without someone even looking at him. When I asked him why, he told me that his original owner had given him a rather bad name.
"Why would your name stop anyone from adopting you?" I asked. The Eyrie sighed and said:
"No one wants a badly named pet, unless they are painted in a very expensive colour, or being a rare and expensive species. Look, kiddo, you're a Poogle. You wouldn't understand." He looked at me one last time, and left.
The Eyrie was right. I didn't understand what it was like. I have a very good name, but that's not my fault. And me being a Poogle, well... blame my mom.
Mom! Why did you leave me, Mom?
I shook my thoughts away. I'll never forgive her for what she did to me. I can't even remember the last time I saw her. You could say it's been a while.
I had been in the pound for quite some time now, and I started to wonder why no one had come by to adopt me.
"Yer stuck in the pound, ye see."
Wait? What? Who was that? I looked around, and saw a Christmas JubJub.
"What did you say?" I asked.
"Yer stuck in the pound," the JubJub said again.
"Why are you talking so, uh, weirdly?"
"Aye, I used t' be a pirate, but me owner changed me, ye see."
"Why would someone first make you into a pirate, then Christmas, and then put you in the pound?"
"Arr, me thinks me owner got a pet with a better name." The little JubJub sat down in front of me.
"Why be ye here?" he asked me. I told him my whole story. From the beginning, when I was a Darigan Kougra, how I got zapped with the Lab Ray, how I was traded away over and over, to the day when I turned blue and my owner left me in the pound.
The JubJub got quiet for a while. He seemed to be thinking about it. You could kind of see it from the way he would suck on his toe and get this blank stare in his eyes.
"What, uh, what did you mean by being stuck in the pound?" I asked gently.
"Aye, that's what we call the pets that's up fer adoption, but not found unless ye know the name fer the pet," he said and continued to suck on his toe.
I left the JubJub alone. It was obvious that I couldn't get him to talk much more. While I walked over to my sleeping spot, I started to think about what the JubJub had said. I could only get adopted if someone knew my name. That was a scary thought.
That night, I didn't get very much sleep. Too many thoughts in my head; not to forget all the pets that were crying. All of them hoping for a new owner, a loving family. Which most of them would never get.
I must have fallen asleep, because suddenly a bright light shone through the windows. I decided to take a walk around the pound to see if I could find other pets to talk to. I didn't want to be alone right now. Imagine that; being in a place with maybe hundreds of other pets, and still feel so alone. It's a horrible feeling. Maybe talking to other pets in similar situations would be good for me.
When I walked around one of the corners, I saw maybe five or six Grarrls, all of them were a basic colour. I heard them talking about names, so I walked up to them.
"What do you want?" one of them asked with a deep voice.
"Uhm, I was just wondering why none of you had been adopted," I said quietly.
"Well, when your name is something that has to do about a certain avatar, you can't be expected to be adopted in a heartbeat, unless someone needs that certain avatar," one of the other Grarrls said.
"Especially not if you've eaten the item you need to get it," the third Grarrl said.
"What item and which avatar?" I asked, and the first Grarrl snarled at me.
"Leave us alone, kid. Go bother someone else if you have to."
Sheesh, those Grarrls sure can be angry...
I saw people come and go through the doors to the pound. Some of them looked around, but didn't find any pets they were willing to adopt. I heard a few of them talking together, about how badly named these pets were and how they were just adopting pets with good names. Pets they could trade with, to get their dream pets.
I started to feel really sorry for those pets. Never finding a good home because of a name? That's just absurd. I always thought that every pet had a right to a home, but I wouldn't dream of thinking about the pound as their home!
A few days later, I was still in the pound. It started to feel like I was going to stay in the pound forever. I was hungry and tired. I had seen some pets being adopted, and was happy for them. These pets deserve to go to a real home. Being stuck in the pound is no fun at all.
While I was sleeping on my back, and probably snoring too, someone poked my nose. I slowly opened my eyes, and saw a shadow standing over me.
"Hi, Martin! You want to go home with me?" It was a little girl standing there, wanting to adopt me. Of course I would! I jumped around with joy for a little while and jumped into her arms. She gave me a big, warm hug and started to walk to the front door.
Before we walked out, I saw the red Eyrie and Christmas JubJub peeking from behind the corner.
"Arr, thar he goes," the JubJub said fondly.
"Hey, kiddo! Good luck with your new home," the Eyrie shouted. I ran towards them, wanting to say good bye.
"I'm sure you guys will be adopted some day, too," I said. They shook their heads.
"Not very likely," the Eyrie said. I looked over my shoulder at my new owner. She sighed and said:
"I wish I could adopt them too, Martin, but I don't have enough room for them. I'm sorry."
"'’Twill be okay. We be fine, arr," the JubJub said. "We have been here fer a long time already, so we be used t' it."
"Go, kiddo. Your owner is waiting for you," the Eyrie said. "We'll be fine." He smiled and nodded at the JubJub.
We said good bye to one another and I left the pound with my new owner.
While we walked home my new owner said, "Look, there are some things you need to know."
I nodded and let her talk.
"I'm not the richest girl in Neopia, so I might not be able to give you an expensive paint job or buying you gourmet food or reading tons of books for you."
"That's okay. I understand, Mom." I gasped a little. Did I really call her Mom? She looked at me. I bet she was thinking about me calling her Mom, too. Wow, that felt weird. Mom... Mom. I guess she could be my mom now!
When we finally arrived at her house, I mean OUR house, I was thrilled. I was welcomed by a green Aisha, a red Gnorbu and a yellow Usul. They overwhelmed me with hugs and open arms.
"This is Martin, the one I was talking about," Mom said.
"Hi, Martin!" they all said. I was touched. This was the most amazing thing I'd ever experienced since before the first time I was dragged to the Lab Ray.
Mom brought me some food; an omelette. I don't think I've ever eaten so fast in my life. No wonder; I was starving. I started thinking about those pets in the pound again. Oh, how hungry they must be. I got a pain in my stomach over that one. Or maybe it was the omelette. I'm not quite sure.
I wanted to ask mom about a Petpet, since I missed Slim the Slorg so much. I still feel sorry for that little guy. He didn't deserve what happened to him.
"I, erm..." I started nervously.
"Yes, Martin? What's up?" she asked.
"I was just wondering if, um, if I could maybe have a Petpet?" I looked up at her.
"Well, we'll see about that. I guess since the other ones have one, why shouldn't you have one too? It won't be an expensive one, though, but I think I could spare a couple of thousand for a buddy for you." She smiled. I smiled back.
The very next day, she walked me over to the Petpet shop and made me pick one. I studied them thinking about which one I would want. I stopped by the Slorgs, and almost cried.
"I want a Slorg," I said. "Please?"
"If that's what you want!" she said and picked one of the Slorgs down and went to the cashier.
I named him Xime. The Slorg, that is. Not the cashier, haha.
That night, I was thinking about the Eyrie and JubJub left in the pound. Oh, I so wished they could be here instead. Maybe I could go over and visit them some day. Maybe that would cheer them up a little bit. Maybe... I fell asleep.
I'm happy now. I have a nice family, new friends and a Slorg. I’ve spoken to Mom about it, and she says she might be able to find a way to turn me into a Kougra again. Maybe. But I don't care about that now. All I ever wanted was to be with someone who could love me, feed me and take care of me. I won’t be a Darigan Kougra again; I know Mom could never afford Darigan. But none of it matters anymore. As long as I'm here, I know I'll be safe.
I'm finally home.