While down below on the planet's surface her likeness
was being scoured by the Faerie queen herself, Linny sat peacefully in the midst
of the Grundo foot court, slopping and crunching loudly as she feasted upon
foods that she had no idea what it was! Though she was feeling some ebbs of
guilt and fear at her horrible blunder, it was not nearly enough to fill the
empty pit that was her insatiable appetite.
Suddenly, the peaceful flurry of the station
was shattered mercilessly as voices began to scream and children began to cry.
Linny didn't seem to notice, nor mind, as the crowds began to run about in a
wild panic, her reasoning behind the event simply that perhaps the discount
card store has once again opened, settling happily on this idea and returning
to her gorging of food.
The chaos around her was escalating as many feeble
pets helplessly scratched and banged on the doors and air ducts around the station,
desperately trying to find a place to hide. However, they were far too slow
and far too late as the hallways leading into the main court were enveloped
within the shadows as the massive green hulks emerged form their depths…
Their size was easily equal to that of a small
home, and perhaps their weight being the same measure as well. The muscles rippled
and bulged from underneath their tough, green skin, seeming almost impenetrable
to any mortal weapon. The pets needed to only take one look at them before they
knew that these Grundos were members of Sloth’s elite bodyguard detail…
This simple fact terrified them as they skittered
and scattered, but it was no use, the guards could simply walk in larger strides
than the pets could run, and after a few pathetic chases, many of the pets had
been snatched right off the ground by the monstrous guards, who dangled them
a good few feet from off of the ground.
Two by two they were lead out of the shops and
main hallways towards a fate unknown to them. The entire space station was abuzz
with fear and worry...
But as the pets were unceremoniously snatched
and captured, Linny continued to sit by the counter of the cafe, contentedly
munching away at her peaceful leisure, slipping into a fairylike dream world
of Milkyway shakes and Garthroxian Goo
Perhaps it was because of her rather small stature,
or simply because she had not fled like the others, whatever the very fates
has decided to bless upon her…no one seemed to notice, nor bother with the young
girl as she continued to slop and munch her food.
"Iz kleer…" a large Grundo grunted unintelligently
to his partner, the latter gave a huge nod of his head and stomped off towards
the bowls of the space station. No sooner than two minutes had passed when a
large troop of Grundos entered the abandoned center, each of them flanking what
was the most feared creature of all of Neopian history and lore to set his foot
upon the planet but Doctor Frank Sloth.
But Linny didn't know, or perhaps simply did
not care. It was the delectable taste of the food that mattered, and so as she
emitted a huge squeal of delight upon finding that the shop keeper had actually
given her two side dishes instead of the one which she paid for, the small sound
being her ultimate undoing…
The happy glee echoed through the thick air of
depression, striking Sloth’s ear faster than any other sound would. His brow
furrowed as he focused on the solitary figure at the counter, casting his beady
eyes on the troupe as if expecting some sort of explanation for this anomaly.
He has ordered them to be especially careful as to have everyone removed and
detained for security purposes. But another thought slide into his dark mind
as he advanced on the figure, believing that perhaps this could prove to be
an interesting diversion for the time being…
Slowly sloth moved towards the obviously Linny
and cleared his throat as he stood behind her in all his menacing glory. The
girl stopped eating, however did not turn around, her eyes fixed straight on
a point in front of her.
"Look pal, I bought this food with my own money!
Your just gonna hafta wait until the Grundo chef restocks, cause you can’t have
mine!" She muttered before returning to her potatoes while mumbling something
along the lines of 'beggars'. Sloth's demeanor soured at this refusal and also
perhaps also reflected a bit of shock. How could his amazing evil presence not
be acknowledged by this mere human?! It was an outrage!
"AHEM!" he coughed ahead again, grasping
on to Linny's shoulder with his large, claw-like hand. The girl quickly emitted
a squeal of terror before swiftly swiveling around on the barstool which she
sat, clutching a tube of chocolate éclairs in her hand.
"IT'S MY FOOD!" she howled madly, squirting all
of the tube’s contents before she even thought about the situation any further.
The brown goop soared with amazing speed and accuracy out of the tube, floating
in what seemed like mid-suspension until it made contact with the center of
Sloth's surprised face.
It took only a second or two before Linny realized
the gravity of her mistake, as she let out a terrified scream and tried to scrabble
over the counter of the Grundo chef's stand.
"EEEEEE! SLOTH!" she hollered in pure terror;
however her reaction time was far too slow for her to make a decent getaway
or even a conceivable one. A massive Grundos, which was flanking Sloth quickly
advanced and grabbed her around the collar of her red sweater, suspending her
well over three feet in the air before turning her around to face the chocolate-coated
The two looked at each other for a long time;
the foolish girl who simply had to eat an 8 million dollar weapon, and the conqueror
of thousand or so worlds now reduced to a rather large candy bar. Sloth’s intensive
glare was painful to Linny’s stomach, which twisted and writhed in fear. She
let out a subtle cough before beginning to speak…
"Erm... would an apologize make you let me go?"
she squeaked pointing at Sloth's chocolate outfit. "I could pay for your dry
"SILENCE!" he bellowed, quickly stifling
Linny's mumbling and feeble apologizes. Sloth shifted his glower towards the
guard holding Linny and let out a snarl.
"Take her to dock 4A and put her in the dentition
room!" Sloth ordered, scarping the chocolate out of his eyes. At the order Linny’s
color drained pitifully out of her already pallid face while she let out a horrified
cry of panic. Desperately she tried to appeal to Sloth’s humanistic side while
the Grundos attempted to drag her away.
"I'll give you my iceberg sundaeeeee—!" she howled
as the Grundos peeled her fingers away from the table before them and whisked
her away into the shadows.
"I say we should talk to Fyora first, Tahoshi."
"You’re joking! We need to drag Linny back and
bring her to her senses!"
"Tahoshi! Fyora would be the best optio—"
"No she wouldn't!"
The Lupe and Cybunny bickered amongst each other
pointlessly, trying to decide perhaps the best course of action given the unusual
circumstances. The family stood on the beaten dirt path of a lesser traveled
road within the Neopian marketplace. Before them stood a crossroad, leading
towards the Faerieland Eyrie Taxi Service and a travel hub to the Space Station.
However, which direction the trio was to go in
was still not decided by the two, and so as they snapped at each other pointlessly,
while Harri lounged about in the grass, gently petting his white Weewoo and
looking among the grass for flowers.
"But Tahoshi! What will we to do to get Linny
to come back? Just say 'come back Linny’ ? You know she won’t! Besides, we don’t
even know for sure if she did go to the Space Station!” Kuraiiro implored
with emphasis, trying to appeal logic to Tahoshi's senses.
"There was a report of her there, and I’m sure
the faeries are already checking it out! Besides, what will Fyora do except
tell us to mind our own business! I say we simply storm the Space Station, grab
Linny, and knock her unconscious!" Tahoshi grunted in anger, however it simply
brought up another battle of words between the two, which neither heard.
"Hey guys..." A meek voice chipped in. Kuraiiro
and Tahoshi ceased their shouts, slowly turning towards the young Gelert who
seemed to be engrossed in what a rolled up copy of The Neopian Times in a nearby
trash had to say…
"Erm... you don't remember where... Linny was...
right?" he asked, his ears slowly flattening with fear as he uttered each word
cautiously. Kuraiiro and Tahoshi hurriedly scrambled over towards the trash
basket, knocking it over in their haste. They roughly snatched the paper from
the rotting apples and discarded Slorg snacks in the trash, reading the hurriedly
printed headline with relish.
NEOPIA’S NUMBER ONE FOE RETURNS: SLOTH SPOTTED AT SPACE STATION!
Sources reliable to The Neopian Times have just recently confirmed that Doctor
Frank Sloth has in fact been spotted within the Virtupets Space Station today.
Communication lines directly linked to the Space Station have been cut without
any notice as well as any other security link which can be accessed from Neopia.
Though pictures are hard to come by, the Times has managed to acquire the last
known footage of the cameras before they were destroyed.—“
The horrified group peered down at the black
and white picture of poor quality depicting a scene of complete mayhem as the
grayscale pets ran away in horror, and the mutated Grundos chased after them
with unrelenting malice.
"...Oh no," Kuraiiro muttered faintly, trying
to steady herself on the ground.
"Is Linny gonna be eaten by Sloth?" the electric
Gelert whimpered, desperately hugging his Weewoo for comfort. The Lupe scoffed
and grumbled at the panic in their faces, though it was evident that he too was
nervous of the whole ordeal.
"Nonsense! She'll be fine! I mean, it's not like
Sloth will single her out or anything! And I'm sure she's smart enough to st--"
He quickly paused his train of thought as he realized the absurdity of his words.
"Okay... well... maybe not… but look, we have
to get to that Space Station, " Tahoshi nodded fervently. The two pets frowned
and crossed their paws defiantly, both out of fear and logic based reasons.
"Tahoshi we can't! What we going to do?! Fight
Sloth?"! Kuraiiro sighed as she rubbed her furry scalp.
"Exactly!" Tahoshi yelled as he drew out an iron
wrought sword from his Christmas esque coat. "We'll simply go and rescue her!"
"This isn't like those stories in the Neopian
Times, Tahoshi," Kuraiiro grumbled loudly as she snatched the sword from her
brother. "Linny will be fine! But for the time being perhaps it would be better
if we simply went to Queen Fyora to speak on this matter!"
To be continued...