Stand behind yer sheriff Circulation: 194,763,780 Issue: 792 | 4th day of Hiding, Y19
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Of Mootixes and Quadrapuses...


by xmafwlmbcx

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      Ping!

      Saialina stopped in her tracks. She was certain she’d heard, and, come to think of it, felt a small ping into her bag. She cast her eyes about her. It was a pleasant and sunny day. There was a light breeze, but nothing to ruffle too many feathers. After looking up and down the path just trodden, the young desert Eyrie was quite certain there was nobody crouching behind bushes throwing things at her. She knew that she had heard something, though. It was probably just Tamsian playing tricks on her again. Last week that mischievous silver Uni had waited nearly FOUR hours for her to stroll innocently by before pelting her with a gooey banana creme pie. It took ages to wash that out of her fur and feathers! Not mention the waste of a perfectly good pie.

      The sun was making its way towards the west, and Saialina grew suddenly wary of the time. She had to make it home before sundown; she’d promised to be back for dinner. Whatever it was, it was only a very little ping, so it really couldn’t cause too much trouble. Just to be safe, though, she gently unfurled her beautiful String Art wings and removed her backpack.

      ‘I had better check on my Quadrapus in there!,’ she exclaimed, remembering the strange little petpet she had found on her travels. ‘He seemed very nervous.’ Saialina felt rather guilty about the extra petpet. She already had Mya her Mazzew lolling alongside her, but she knew someone at home would be thrilled to have a new Quadrapus, especially the silly Tamsian.

      She unzipped the bag and peered inside. Two bright and curious googly eyes stared up at her. The little Quadrapus smiled and started wriggling his little tentacles, excited by the prospect of being out of the cramped bag. Mya peered in suspiciously, her little purple face suddenly taking on a greenish hue of jealously. Saialina laughed in reassurance, ‘Don’t you worry, Mya, you’re not going anywhere. This little guy just needs a home! We can't have him flopping about on the road in this heat!’ Mya gave a disgruntled little purr but seemed content. She even looked as if she might smile too. They turned their attentions to the wriggly orange critter in the bag.

      ‘Not so fast, little fella. It’s far too warm out here for you, so I’m afraid you’ll have to wait in there until we’re home.’ Saialina gently patted him on his weird, slimy head. She felt satisfied that nothing was out of place, and the little Quadrapus was safe and sound, scattered among the bits of omelettes and dubloons. She began to zip the bag up again before, out of the corner of her eye, she saw a sudden movement. She carefully moved the Quadrapus about the bag, checking either side of him, but could see nothing. She made a little mental note that really, that bag should be sorted out and cleaned, but it’s a hard and busy life being an adventurous little Eyrie, and sometimes these trivial tasks just have to wait. She zipped up her bag and slung it once again over her wing.

      ‘Come along, Mya,’ she said to the quizzical little Mazzew at her side, ‘let’s get a move on.’

      Inside Saialina’s bag, the Quadrapus wriggled to try and get comfortable, before yawning and considering a little snooze. It was then, just as his bulbous eyes began to close, that he saw it.

      Ping!

      A little Mootix shot from behind a desiccated pile of tomato omelettes and whizzed across the bag.

      ‘Wherever did you come from?!’ The Quadrapus seemed just as startled by the Mootix as they stared wide-eyed at each other. He extended a tentacle to the little guy, who graciously clambered up and smiled.

      ‘I saw your owner walking, and just jumped! It’s pretty scary out here on your own when you're only very little. I thought maybe her purple petpet might want a petpetpet, but she didn’t even notice me.’ The little Mootix hung his head a little, and inched closer to the Quadrapus. ‘I’m Trix, what’s your name?’

      ‘I’m Tickles,’ replied the Quadrapus, happy that someone had finally asked. He wasn’t cross with Saialina or anything, it was just nice to talk to someone. He himself had had a Draphly many owners ago, and had loved the little thing very much. He hoped his next owner might give him a petpetpet again.

      The pair chatted away about owners past, and enjoyed the stories and company of each other. As it turns out, Trix had never had an owner at all! Tickles couldn’t believe it, and felt certain that once Mya and Saialina knew he was there, they would be beyond thrilled to have a little petpetpet join them on their travels. He decided to try and make it happen, and wriggled with all his might to see if he could get the bag to wriggle too.

      ‘What are you doing?’ asked the bewildered little Trix, shielding himself from a flying Tchea fruit. He was running out of things to cling onto. It’s very difficult for such a tiny petpetpet without a trusty petpet to look after him!

      ‘If we can get their attention, I’m sure the Mazzew would love a little Mootix friend!’ Tickles was certain his plan would work. He just needed to get the right wriggle.

      Sure enough, after a great deal of wriggling, Saialina and Mya’s puzzled faces appeared before them.

      ‘What on earth is going on in here, I wonder!,’ cried Saialina, both baffled and amused by the silly Quadrapus. Tickles wriggled as hard as his little tentacles would let him to try and get them to notice tiny Trix, but just as they’d unzipped the bag and peered inside, a huge spoonful of glowing jelly flew across the bag and all but covered the little Mootix! Any other jelly, and they’d be able to see straight through, but the glow from this one made it impossible to see anything for a few minutes. The bag closed again, and Tickles frowned, wondering how he was going to free his new friend from the little jelly prison.

      ‘That went well!,’ laughed Trix, using his antenna as an improvised jelly shovel, ‘I just need them to open the bag a few more times before I’m ready to make the jump. It is an awfully long way!’

      And so Tickles wriggled some more, and Saialina and Mya opened the bag. They just could not work out what it was that was making the little Quadrapus so wriggly all of a sudden! Trix saw his opportunity to jump and his whole face lit up with glee. He stretched his tiny wings out as far as they would go and crouched down, ready to leap to his new friend. Just as he was about to take off, however, one of Tickles’ more enthusiastic tentacles accidentally squished him into the side of the bag, and AGAIN Mya didn't notice him. And so the cycle went on. Tickles wriggled. The bag opened. Mya didn’t see Trix. It seemed to go on for hours and hours, and the little Mootix began to feel like he would never reach his petpet. Saialina and Mya were just as frustrated. They felt certain the little floppy fellow was trying to tell them something, but couldn’t work out what it was! Thankfully, they were nearly home. Saialina was positive the trickster Tamsian would just love the little Quadrapus. Maybe all he needed was a Neopet to cuddle?

      By the time they all made it home to Brightvale everyone was exhausted. Tickles had never wriggled so much in his life, and could barely even lift a tentacle anymore. Poor Trix had been squished and swatted and covered by every single item in Saialina’s knapsack and was still no closer to being able to jump onto a petpet, and Mya had been riding on Saialina’s back for the last part of the journey, simply too tired to walk anymore. They must have opened and checked that bag at least a thousand times, and never once managed to catch sight of the friendly little Mootix inside.

      ‘Tamsian, we’re home!,’ Saialina called out, before WHAM! An especially gloopy banana creme pie whacked her square in the face. Tamsian the Uni emerged from behind the door laughing like crazy. Saialina laughed too, despite being covered in goo. Mya hastily jumped up to lick it off, suddenly not so tired anymore!

      ‘Any new discoveries on your adventures today?’ Tamsian asked between fits of laughter.

      ‘As a matter of fact, I managed to find you a petpet!’ Saialina couldn’t help but love the playful Uni. She would have preferred a simple ‘thank you’ to a pie in the face, but that just wasn’t Tamsian’s way. Tamsian’s eyes grew to the size of doughnutfruits in excitement, and she ran towards Saialina’s bag.

      Tickles was nearly asleep when the ruckus stirred him. Surely this would be the time, he thought, but he could barely move, he was so tired. He had to do something to get them to see Trix, but what could it be? He looked around the bag, carefully rummaging to see if there was anything he could use to help his cause, and then his saw it. He wrapped his tentacle around a small, round, tin…

      Tamsian couldn’t even wait for Saialina to open her bag. She began unzipping it herself, eager to meet her new petpet. She unzipped the bag, and before she knew it, a wriggly orange tentacle flopped out and splatted her square in the face with a banana creme pie! As the shock died down and the creme dripped out of her eyes, Tamsian found herself face to face with the most perfect little Quadrapus she had ever seen. It was truly a perfect match! They all fell about laughing at the whole thing, before they realised that Tickles still had one tentacle in the bag. Tamsian tried to pull it out, but he wouldn’t budge. She looked inside the bag once again, just in time to see a very tiny, very omelette-covered little Mootix leaping from the bag and attaching itself to Tickles. She couldn't believe it! She had started the day all on her own, and finished it with not only a glorious petpet, but a petpetpet too! Now they could all wreak havoc and play pranks together!

      As he held on as tightly as he could, Trix looked up at Tickles and smiled. He had been trying to jump onto the wrong petpet all along! The two couldn’t believe their luck, and quickly set about helping Tamsian plot her next trick on Saialina and Mya. They all laughed the evening away before Saialina picked a teensy bit of egg out of Trix’s antenna and decided that actually, maybe clearing out her bag might not be such a bad idea!

      The End.

 
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