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Neopia's Fill in the Blank News Source | 4th day of Relaxing, Yr 22
The Neopian Times Week 102 > New Series > Out of Luck: Part One

Out of Luck: Part One

by satushi

Zarleon, a Halloween Kougra, walked proudly down a sidewalk in Neopian Central. He was returning home from another winning spree at the Games Room, and held a fat bag of Neopoints in his fangs. His dark eyes held pride as he strutted toward his Neohome, his prize clinking as the bag swayed in his muzzle. His sharp black claws made a dull clicking noise as they hit the pavement and his feathery wings ruffled gently in the breeze. Zarleon smirked to himself as he thought, Another victory for Leon. I'm unstoppable; no one is better than me.

     His self-admiration was temporarily interrupted as he heard sounds nearby. The rare silence in Neopian Central had been broken by two voices happily chatting with each other. Leon growled faintly as he passed an elderly blue Nimmo and a middle aged Poogle who sat on a bench by some shops. They were talking merrily to each other, and their monotonous voices began to get on Leon's nerves as he passed. The selfish Kougra shot a threatening glare in their direction, and a dull glint caught his eye. He looked closer and noticed that the elderly Nimmo had an opened knapsack that he had just put on the bench behind him. In the bag sat a beautiful gem.

     Leon looked at it curiously. The gem was a dark shade of purple that almost seemed black at times, with a smooth looking texture and pointed edges. It was in the shape of diamond and seemed to have a dull grey mist swirling inside of it. Leon smirked as a thought came to mind. That stone looks very valuable, he thought selfishly, I bet I could sell it for a large amount of Neopoints, and all I have to do is steal it from that old toad.

     With these thoughts in mind, he silently slipped into the shadows and crept toward the old pets. They were too busy talking to notice Leon as he carefully removed the Gem from the bag and silently put it in his own bag of Neopoints. He quickly picked up his bag again and hurried away from the old pets who were still laughing and talking, obviously unaware of what had just happened.

     Leon glanced over his shoulder and smirked. He had stolen the gem and now all he had to do was sell it before his family found out. He had to get home first, so he'd have to hide the gem from his owner, brother, and sister, or they would all wonder were he had gotten it. Then he would sell it at his owners shop and keep the Neopoints all for himself.

     The greedy Halloween Kougra passed by a rushing river on his way home through the forest, the white rapids churning loudly as he walked past. He was so busy thinking about the gem that he didn't notice a fat rock lying right in his path. His large front paws hit the rock and, startled, he lost his balance, causing him to collapse onto the dirt path. The force of his large body hitting against the ground caused him to drop his bag, spilling his Neopoints right into the river.

     Leon jumped up and grabbed the bag, but too late. He watched in despair as all of his earnings disappeared into the rapids. He stomped his paw in anger and frustration, then quickly withdrew it as it hit into something sharp. Leon looked at his paws and grinned as his dark eyes fell upon the gem, its hazy looking center seeming to spiral around inside. He stared at it joyfully and thought, Oh well, this stone will more than make up for all the Neopoints I just lost.

     Leon quickly grabbed the gem and held in gently in fangs, then carefully continued to walk toward his home. On his way he was greeted by more bad luck. As he walked through the deathly silent forest, he was suddenly showered with acorns from a large oak tree. Each hard acorn hit him forcefully on his head or back, causing him to run in order to get away from the tree. As he rushed away from it, his paw suddenly snagged on a thick tree root that stuck out of the ground, causing him to fall flat on his face. Leon growled and slowly stood up, his paw aching from being twisted against the root.

     He angrily continued on, now beginning to feel suspicious about his sudden outburst of bad luck. Leon abruptly found himself tripping over another rock, and collapsing for the third time today. This time, he just happened to land in a puddle of mud beside the path, splattering ugly brown spots across his black pelt. He had dropped the gem as he fell and now angrily stood up to look for it. It sat a few feet away on the path, its foggy center now seeming to swirl more than ever.

     Leon wearily walked over to it and growled to himself, "What in the world is going on? I've never been so unlucky before in my life."

     He sighed and picked up the gem again, cautiously walking down the path once more. He could see his Neohome from behind the trees and quickly headed towards it. At least he was almost home, but he had left his bag by the river and now had nowhere to hide his gem.

     I'll just have to sneak up to my room quietly and hope no one notices me, he thought confidently. I just hope I don't blow it…

     Leon finally made it up to the door of his Neohome, but not before accidentally hitting his head against a low tree branch. He growled in frustration and paused before cautiously opening the door to his house and silently slipping in. His owner, Satushi, was currently not at home, so Leon assumed she was out running errands. His younger brother, Ariacee the Christmas Gelert, and sister, Kyurinei the Starry Uni, were upstairs in their rooms.

     Leon quietly walked up the stairs towards his room. His bedroom was near the end of the hallway, so he had to pass by both of his sibling's rooms to get there. To Leon's despair, Kyurinei's bedroom door was wide open. He passed by as silently as possible, but tripped for the fourth time that day and fell with a thud right in front of her door.

     The starry Uni looked up from the book she was reading and gave her older brother an odd look. She couldn't help but smile faintly at the tattered, beaten, and filthy Kougra that lay in her doorway. Leon stood up and flinched as he put weight on his front paws, now very sore from tripping so many times.

     Kyurinei stood up from her reading place on the floor and trotted over to Leon. "What happened to you?" she asked with a smirk.

     He only glared warningly at her and tried to brush some of the mud from his fur. "None of your business, Kyur," he said in a voice that was slightly muffled by the gem in his mouth.

     Kyur looked at Leon's muzzle and saw the dark gem. "What have you got there?" she inquired with an odd expression.

     Leon dropped the gem on the floor and covered it with his large paws nervously. "Uh… nothing…" he replied uneasily. Kyur only smirked again.

     "Don't lie," she said as she eyed his paws. "It will only lead you to distrust."

     "I didn't ask for your opinion!" Leon snapped. "Now go back to your stupid book and leave me alone!"

     Kyur help her calm expression, obviously used to Leon's bad attitude. She simply shook her head and looked at him sternly. "Show me what you're hiding, Leon."

     He growled and picked up the gem again, then turned to leave before Kyur could see it. As Leon turned, one of his sharp claws got caught in the carpet and wrenched his already sore paw. He yelped in pain, which sent the gem flying from his mouth and landing right in front of Kyur. She smirked and picked it up, then carried it back into her room.

     "Hey! Give that back you, little thief!" Leon yelled as he pulled away from the carpet and followed Kyur into her room.

     She sat on the floor and observed the gem curiously. "Oh, now I'm the thief?" she said without looking at him. "I don't seem to recall you having this gem before."

     He stopped in front of her and growled; his dark eyes narrowed. "That's none of your concern, Kyurinei!" he said furiously.

     "Oh, I believe it is," Kyur replied seriously. "I recognize this from somewhere…" she said mostly to herself.

     "I don't care!" Leon shouted as Kyur pulled a thick book from one of her shelves. She flipped through the pages and found what she wanted. She read for a few moments, then her deep blue eyes widened.

     She stared in silence at the stone, and then slowly turned her gaze to the frustrated Leon. "I do believe we have an ancient relic on our hands," she said in surprise. She read for another moment, and then looked back at Leon. "And a cursed one at that," Kyur added with a touch of concern in her voice.

     Leon glared at her. "You're pulling my leg," he snarled. "There's no such thing as a cursed gem." Kyur shook her head and looked straight at him.

     "Oh yes there is," she said as she turned the book towards Leon, "and by the looks of you, the curse has already started." Kyur looked over her tired brother and smirked again.

     Leon's once smooth black coat was now spotted with dry mud, and it's once silky texture was now rough and dusty from falling onto the road so many times. He looked very scruffy now, his tail and ears had small tufts of fur sticking up here and there, and he was missing a few feathers on his wings.

     Kyur only shook her head again. "Leon, where did you get such a gem?" she asked suddenly.

     He hesitated before saying, "I-I found it." Kyur gave him a threatening look. Leon sighed. He couldn't hide anything from his sister. "Alright, I kind of… stole it," he said quietly.

     Kyur narrowed her eyes, "You're a fool, Zarleon," she hissed, "and now you're receiving your punishment."

     Leon growled and crouched down, on the verge of attacking her. "What are you babbling about, Kyurinei?" he snarled.

     "Don't you get it?" she snapped, "The stone has cursed you. Haven't you noticed all the bad luck you've had today?"

     "What, so you're saying the fact that I'm unlucky today is all because of a rock?" Leon mocked, "Oh, and I suppose tomorrow I'll get cursed by a stick."

     Kyur sighed. "I know it's hard to believe, but please listen to Me, she said as she turned her attention back to the book. "It says that the gem is fueled by negative emotion, and the more you express, the more you shall be cursed."

     Leon tensed and growled again, "Shut up!" he roared, "I'm not listening to your nonsense anymore!"

     Kyur looked up at him. "Please Leon, I want to help you," she said gently. "The only way to break the curse is-" She didn't have a chance to finish her sentence. Leon suddenly sprung forward and leaped at her.

     Kyur gasped and ducked just in time. Leon flew right over her head and landed with a thud on the ground behind her. Leon stood up and stared at her, his dark eyes filled with a frightening rage.

     Kyur slowly started to back away. "Leon, calm down," she said as kindly as possible. Leon roared and leaped at her again, his claws extended.

     She dodged out of the way again and Leon slammed into the wall, sinking into a heap on the floor after such a hit. He slowly rose to his feet again, looking exhausted.

     "See Leon, you never used to be this clumsy. Your rage will only make things worse," Kyur said calmly. "You anger is what makes you weak and unlucky."

     Leon growled and stalked towards her. On the floor, the gem's foggy middle was now spiraling very noticeably. The black mist curled around itself ominously.

     A young Christmas Gelert suddenly peaked into the room. His once happy auburn eyes suddenly turned fearful as he watched the scene inside.

     "What's going on in here?!" he yelped as he stepped inside.

     Kyur and Leon both turned their attention towards him. "Ariacee!" Kyur cried, "Get out of here!"

     The small Gelert squealed pathetically as Leon snarled viciously at him. He turned and scurried out into the hallway, but Leon bolted after him. Ariacee yelped again as the huge Kougra ran close behind him.

     "Leon!" Kyur yelled as she chased after them. "Leave Ari alone!"

     Ari jolted to a stop as he reached the stairs and leaped to the side as Leon tried to tackle him. Leon missed and went toppling loudly down the stairs, coming to a crashing stop as he smashed against the wall downstairs.

     Kyur gasped as she stopped beside Ari. They both stared down at the unconscious figure of Leon laying at the bottom the stairs.

     "I'm sorry!" Ari wailed, "I really really am!" The sensitive Gelert's eyes swelled with tears and he looked at Kyur. "D-Did I hurt him?" he asked weakly.

     The Uni just stared in disbelief. She looked at her little brother and Softly said, "Ari, Leon is cursed. He stole a magical gem and it has cursed him because of his anger."

     Ari's eyes widened. "Are you serious?!" he yelped. "We've gotta help him!"

     Kyur nodded and looked down at Leon. He stirred and moaned weakly as he slowly got up. Ari squealed faintly and looked at him, as well.

     Leon looked right at them, but stayed where he was. He was too weak to fight both of them now, and they would surely tell Satushi about all of this. His dark eyes suddenly shifted to the floor.

     To everyone's surprise, the gem sat on the carpet by Leon's paws. The dark center now seemed to get larger and swirl even more, so it looked as though there was a tiny storm happening inside the gem.

     Kyur's eyes widened, "But… that was in my room… just a second ago…" she said quietly.

     Ari looked at it oddly. "What's that stuff in the middle?" he asked her.

     She shook her head, "I'm not sure, but it seems to swirl faster every time Leon feels a negative emotion… and that's what it feeds off of… to curse him…" she said slowly.

     Leon stared at them for another moment, then grabbed the gem and ran out the front door. He hurried into the forest, the gem in his fangs once more.

     Ari squeaked. "He's running into the woods! What if he gets hurt?" he said in concern for his brother.

     Kyur narrowed her eyes. "Come on, Ari," she said sternly. "Let's follow him; he needs our help to break the curse."

     Ari nodded and they both hurried down the stairs and out the door, running after Leon. I just hope we make it in time, Kyur thought uneasily as they disappeared into the forest.

To be continued...

Previous Episodes

Has Your Pet Run Out of Luck?

Out of Luck: Part Two

Week 102 Related Links

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