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Neopia's Fill in the Blank News Source | 5th day of Running, Yr 23
The Neopian Times Week 52 > Short Stories > The Krawk Files: Les' Secret Addiction

The Krawk Files: Les' Secret Addiction

by shidi

Image by thephoenixofeio

Quivel was quivering with excitement - it was time for another episode of Krawk Files, and he'd survived his first week on the Krawk Kam Krew without a single mishap. As cameramen went, he was practically an old-timer. Soon, he'd be getting a spot in the credits and everything! All he had to do was hold the camera steady, and stay out of harm's way - easier said than done on this show!

     "Blimey! Welcome to another episode of The Krawk Files! I'm your PetPet conservationist, Stevo Furwin," Stevo said, putting on his best Wocky grin for the occasion.

     "This is my lovely, wife, Keri…" he went on to say. Quivel swung the camera around to focus on Keri the Acara's smiling face.

     "And my best mate, Les," Stevo continued, pointing at… empty air. Quivel blinked in confusion and held the camera on the empty spot, dumbfounded. "… Keri, where's Les?"

     "I don't know, Stevo. I told him it was time to tape this week's episode. He said he'd be right out." She glanced towards the Krawk Lair, shaking her head in annoyance.

     "Well, crikey! Let's just tape the commercial spot, then, and we'll go haul him out to do the beginning again…" Stevo tried not to be annoyed, and got out the cardboard cut-out of Shidi, their commercial sponsor. Shidi was completely unaffected by the missing Les situation; being a cardboard cut-out has its advantages, after all. She smiled benevolently, same as always, the winged high priestess of The Neopian Times. "If you need an article, factual and true - about NeoHome bathrooms or Kasuki Lu, Shidi's the gal for you! Isn't she a beaut? If you're looking for a story, be it funny, or gory - just give her a call, she's on the ball - it's Shidi!" Stevo hugged the cut-out and gave a big cheesy grin for the camera.

     "He always gives the Shidi cut-out better hugs than he gives me," Keri grumbled. "Let's go get Les so we can do the show. This week's episode is supposed to be about why you don't feed carrots to Flouds, and we've still got to get all the way to Faerieland…"

     "Right-o. Let's go see what he's up to. I hope that a dangerous PetPet didn't sneak into our Lair and bite his face off while he was sleeping!" Stevo said as he headed for the door. The Krawk Lair was constructed of bamboo, which, while reasonably sturdy, allowed sound to travel easily from room to room. This was often somewhat annoying to Quivel and Les when Stevo and Keri were having one of those little spousal disputes that involved growling and throwing furniture. Fortunately, most of the furnishings were made of bamboo too, so there weren't any serious injuries.

     "Do you hear that, Stevo?" Keri said, craning her ears. "It sounds like typing. Les must be in the lounge, using the computer. I wonder if he's doing some important conservation research?"

     "Blimey! This could be great footage. Les hard at work to find the facts on PetPet conservation. Turn the camera back on Quivel, we'll go and get a surprise shot of our mate hard at work for the Krawk Krew." Stevo lead the way towards the lounge as Quivel turned the camera back on.

     As they got closer, they could hear Les talking to himself. "Oh, yeah… what a Krawk! Mm-hm! Look at that Warf! What a big bloke he is! Ten points, muhahahah!"

     Stevo and Keri rounded the corner, and crept quietly towards Les, who was bent over the computer screen, pressing the arrow keys on his keyboard with a furious paw. "Oh, yeah! Who's the Kyrii? I'm the Kyrii, baby!"

     Quivel headed in for a close-up shot, as Stevo pointed at the screen. "And here's Les, hard at work…. Feeding PetPets to a mutant Chia?! Les!"

     "Gah!!" cried Les, jumping out of his seat and trying to cover the screen. "I was, uh… just playing a game of Extreme Herder, mates…"

     "Is that Feed Florg on that screen?" Keri growled, beginning to make The Face.

     Knowing from experience that Acaras make very, very scary faces, Stevo quickly adverted his eyes, and started prying Les's paw off the screen. A mutant Chia with PetPets wandering around his plate was clearly visible.

     "Oh, Les…" Stevo said, disappointed, "How shameful."

     Les hung his head. "It's… it's just a game, Stevo… I can stop playing it if you really want me to."

     "Of course I want you to! How would it look if the Krawk Krew, famous PetPet conservationists, were advocating the playing of a game that involved sending innocent, beautiful PetPets to their demise at the hands of a mutated Chia?" Stevo lectured.

     "… bad?" Quivel guessed.

     "Very bad!" Keri snapped. "This could ruin our whole public image! Shame on you, Les! You're a bad, bad, Kyrii!"

     "Now march right outside and get ready for filming! We've got to go all the way to Faerieland today to do that Floud expose." Stevo said, pointing out of the room.

     "Can I at least hit Send Score?" Les pleaded. "I got this kicking high--"

     "No!" Keri growled. "Show. Now."

     Les sighed and headed outside. He was just about to beat his high score, too! PetPet conservation was great and all that, but… there was just something nifty about watching the fat face of Florg gulp down those PetPets. Sick, perhaps, but entertaining none the less. Maybe when work was over, he could go back to playing. Yeah, that was it…just get through the day's work, and then back to feeding Florg…

     "We're going to catch the Faerie Ferry to Faerieland - isn't this exciting?" Stevo said in his usual enthusiastic manner.

     "Wow," said Les in a deadpan tone as Quivel swung the camera his way. Florg was waiting! Why couldn't they just get on with things?

     "Yes, Stevo, it certainly is! We're going to catch a cloud and float straight up to Faerieland…" Keri said with a smile as Quivel panned in her way.

     "Uh… I have to visit the bathroom," Les said.

     "What?" Stevo said, shaking his head.

     "I drank a large tropical fruit smoothie, mate. I've got to go…" he said, shifting from foot to foot for emphasis.

     "Oh, hurry up then," Keri snarled.

     "Right-o! I'll be back in a flash!" Les hurried off for the house.

     Stevo, Keri and Quivel waited mostly patiently for the first five minutes. Then it became clear that something was amiss. Quivel began to pace, while Keri muttered about Les's bladder. Stevo hit his head suddenly as something came to him. "Uh-oh… remember that article by our sponsor, Shidi, in one of those back issues of the Times?"

     "The one with Kasuki Lu?" asked Quivel. "I liked that one!"

     "No, mate… the one about NeoHome bathrooms… and… what they're lacking."

     "Hey, yeah!" Keri shouted. "There are no toilets in Neopia!" She stomped towards the door, quickly followed by Stevo and Quivel. Predictably, the sounds of furious key pressing could be heard from the lounge.

     "Oh, yeahhhhh! Eat that Kadoatie! Gobble it whole! Muhahaah! Eat 'em all!" Les was talking to himself again, scrunched over the computer keyboard. "No… no… don't fall off the table! Agh, you son of a Babaa! Game over! Nooooo… wait a minute! High score! Oh, yeahhhh!" Les stood up to do the victory dance around his chair, turning straight around to face the rather angry Krawk Krew. "Uh... hi guys. I forgot I'd left the computer on after visiting the bathroom and was just about to turn it off…."

     "Oh, we'll be turning it off…"Stevo said, eyeing the cord menacingly, "Les, you're a PetPet conservationist. This is for your own good."

     "Yeah!" said Keri, waggling a paw at him. "You're an addict! You need help."

     "Florg! Nooo… don't do it Stevo!" Les wailed.

     "Wave bye bye to your mutant mate, Les…" Stevo said, leaning down to pull the plug.

     "Bye bye, Florg…" sniffled Les. "Bye bye, NP…."

     Stevo's paw closed around the cord.

     "Wait, Stevo!" Keri cried. "Did you say… NP, Les?"

     "Keri!" gasped Stevo, shocked.

     "Well, funds are kind of tight, you know, and the souvenir shop doesn't have anything but toy sailboats left in it…" Keri hedged.

     "NP, mates! Lots of it!" Les said, clicking the Send Score button while he had the chance. Keri and Stevo watched the score send NP electronically to their bank account… and blinked at the total.

     "Les… you're really good at this game," Stevo said, pondering. "That is a lot of NP…."

     "They're only virtual PetPets, Stevo. Besides, no one ever needs to know about it…" Keri said, smiling sweetly.

     "Wellll… I guess. If you agree to only play three times a day, Les, it's okay by me!" Stevo said, giving the thumbs up.

     "All right!" said Les with a grin, settling back into the chair to play again. Keri, Stevo, and Quivel crowded around to watch.

     "Devour that Warf! Crunch his bones!" Keri shouted.

     "Don't drop that Slorg, mate!" cried Stevo.

     "Look out for the Hasee!" called Quivel.

     "Shhh!" Les groaned, as he missed a Bearog. What had he started?

The End

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