"Okay, when I said we'd need a boat, I didn't think I'd
be rowing," complained Starilya, a grumpy look on her speckled face, as she
worked one of the orange inflatable boat's oars.
"Quit complaining, it'll increase your strength
level," answered StarSkyFire as he paddled with the other oar. The two Shoyrus,
along with their sisters Shaylily and Aerolani and their owner Furbyfun, sat
in the mid-sized inflatable orange rowboat as they rowed towards the tiny island
just off the shore of Mystery Island.
It appeared that the islet was further away than
it looked, for immediately after a wave had swept the broken-winged Air Faerie
(who needed them to look for her Shoyru on the island) out to sea they'd rushed
to the boat and started rowing towards what looked like a tiny clump of trees
just off shore. But they'd been paddling all afternoon, rotating pets- except
for Aerolani, who was terribly seasick and appeared to be green instead of white-
and were still only three-quarters of the way.
"How much longer is this going to take?" groaned
Shaylily as she leaned on the side, trailing her disco fingers in the cool water.
"Probably about fifteen minutes more. We're almost
there," called Furbyfun, acting as the lookout from her position near the front.
"Finally," groaned the white Shoyru weakly as
she leaned back into the boat. "Remind me never to go on a rowboat with you
Sure enough, they reached the tiny atoll in less
than fifteen minutes. While Furbyfun and Shaylily threw boxes and bags over
their shoulders and out of the boat, Aerolani kept her brother and sister from
"We did that once, and we're not doing it again,"
she reminded commandingly.
"Awww, Aero! Furb and Shaylily are occupied,
we could sneak off!" protested the speckled Shoyru.
That settled, their owner and disco sister walked
over to the rest of the group. "Well, I say we split up," puffed Furbyfun, rubbing
her sore hands together. "Shaylily and StarSkyFire, and Aerolani and Starilya.
Oh, and I don't want to hear music from the trees!" she added as the two pairs
headed in different directions.
After searching for what seemed like hours, but
may have been only minutes, Shaylily and StarSkyFire came upon a striped Shoyru
in a small clearing. She looked a bit unusual, for instead of crystal blue her
eyes were a bright silver, but the strangest thing about her was her wings.
Instead of the blue wings most Shoyrus of her color had, hers were feathered
and white, although greyed by dirt and a bit crumpled from the fall.
"Who are you?" asked the Shoyru, seeming
a bit shaken as she came to her feet.
"Shaylily, Shaylily Starlight to be exact --
princess of Larishi -- and StarSkyFire," said Shaylily as she pointed first
to herself and then to her shadow brother.
"Larishi's a planet, near Neopia, where Neopets
live. My mom's the queen there."
"Oh! Is it a secret, like Jelly World?"
"No, Jelly World doesn't exist, although I wonder
where Furbyfun's jelly collection came from if it doesn't exist. Larishi isn't
a secret at all, just little-known."
"Oh. I'm Jadecrystal, but you can call me JC,
since Jadecrystal's a bit of a mouthful," replied the Shoyru. She tried to fly,
but fell on her rear end when she leaped into the air.
"Something's wrong with my wings," she complained.
"They're just a bit crumpled, you can have our
owner straighten them out when we get home," explained StarSkyFire.
JC shook her head. "Only the Faeries, or a return
to Faerieland, can straighten them out. They're not broken, but I can't fly
The siblings led the Shoyru back to the edge
of the forest, where Shaylily somehow knew the rest of their family was waiting
for them. The two Shoyrus, white Aerolani and speckled Starilya, waiting patiently
with their owner, proved her right. The sun was setting, and it was time to
"You found that Shoyru?" asked Starilya in disbelief.
"We searched all day and couldn't find her!"
"She was in a clearing, not far from the edge
of the forest. Her name's Jadecrystal, but she prefers to be called JC because
it's easier." The Shoyru spoke up then.
"Only my Faerie called me Jadecrystal, and none
of you are my Faerie. Where is my Faerie, anyway? I need to get back
to her before she becomes a Grey Faerie!"
"But that's impossible! There's only one Grey
Faerie in Neopia!" exclaimed Furbyfun.
"No, there are many. Whenever an Uber Faerie
is replaced, she falls- or is pushed, or sometimes even jumps -- off Faerieland
with the pet she is bonded to. The Faerie's wings often break, causing her to
lose her power, and she becomes a Grey Faerie. The pet usually loses most of
their magic and abilities, including flight."
"Hey, where's the boat?" asked StarSkyFire. Furbyfun
scrambled for the place she'd pulled it up to- and gasped.
The boat was gone, and the water was up even
higher than the spot it had rested. "Oh, no! It was low tide... and I only pulled
it up a bit... and now it's high tide..." mumbled the owner with her head in
"Hey, at least we took everything out. Maybe
it'll eventually float back here," said the speckled Shoyru, arm around her
We pried and pried as night fell, but she would
not reveal more. To break the silence largely brought on by the striped Shoyru's
determination not to reveal Faerie secrets, Furbyfun brought out a Tent in a
Box and announced, "Since we obviously won't be able to go home tonight, I thought
we could camp! C'mon, help me set up the Tent in a Box."
"Your owner brought a tent? Does she have
some kind of magic that lets her see the future?" asked JC in astonishment.
"No, she just brings supplies we'll probably
never need everywhere, but she's only been Ms. Always Be Prepared lately," replied
the shadow Shoyru as he tried to start a fire by rubbing two bamboo sticks together.
"StarSkyFire, that'll never work! Here, I have
some matches," said Furbyfun, passing him a matchbox, as she finished unrolling
something large, navy blue, and flat from the box part of Tent in a Box, its
poles in a blue drawstring bag beside it.
"How'd you get these? There are no matches in
Neopia!" exclaimed the shadow Shoyru, nearly invisible in the night, as he pulled
one out and struck it on a rock. A small flame started, and he touched it gently
to the pile of brush surrounded by rocks in front of him. A fire, small but
growing, started and everyone crowded around it.
"Careful with that fire, StarSkyFire. You could
wind up burning down half the forest, " warned Shaylily, "and I for one don't
want to be explaining to the Chia Police why there was a massive fire on the
islet off Mystery Island. Furbyfun, how in Neopia did you get those matches
"I snuck it through Neopian Customs by stuffing
it in my shoe. They don't really check shoes, just your pockets, and even that's
only if you make the Earth item detector beep. I kept it from beeping by stuffing
my shoe with bits of Tchea Fruit, just enough to camouflage the matchbox."
"Furbyfun! You shouldn't have done that!" scolded
Aerolani. Her disco sister just sighed and shook her head. Why did her sister
have to try to be mature all the time?
Quite abruptly, JC announced, "You know what?
I've been cursed. I have a curse on my memory." Everyone looked at her strangely,
the firelight making shadows on her striped face. "It's true," she insisted,
"I can't remember anything. I can remember your names, sort of, for example,
but I can't match up which name goes with which person." She pointed at Aerolani,
"You're StarSkyFire, right?"
The white Shoyru looked offended, saying "No,
JC, that's StarSkyFire" as she pointed at her deeply annoyed brother.
The striped Shoyru apologized, rapidly yet sincerely. The others could tell
JC was ashamed of her mistake; they could see it in her shining silver eyes.
"So, anyone got some spooky stories to tell?"
asked Furbyfun awkwardly over the crackling of the fire. The Shoyrus shook their
heads, not wanting to frighten anyone else with a too-scary story in an already
slightly scary environment.
"Let's get some rest, we'll be glad in the morning,"
suggested Aerolani with a yawn. Everyone agreed and yawned, glaring at the owner
with looks that clearly said You should have set the tent up hours ago...
Furbyfun grabbed the instruction booklet and started trying to figure out the
complicated diagrams and nonsensical words. "Now, cackle A to B and B to C as
illustrated in Figure 3, but be sure to use the Angelpuss poles (not the Mynci
poles), or Tent in a Box will clutter..."
It turned out that she was trying to translate
the Petpet-language version on the back, and the only Petpet she knew was "kastlaéa",
which meant "help", from the short time she had spent as an Angelpuss back at
the FallingBlues' castle. "Why would a Petpet use a tent anyway?" asked Shaylily.
"Who knows? Here's the English version!"
Levitating a ball of light magic to keep a bright
enough light on the page to read it, Shaylily read out the directions while
her owner assembled the tent. It was quite ugly, but it served its purpose well
as the five Shoyrus and Furbyfun slept inside it that night.
What they didn't see was three shadowy figures
in the trees, whispering among themselves. Only JC knew what their presence
meant; they were the reason she had fallen.
To be continued...