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Neopia's Fill in the Blank News Source | 25th day of Collecting, Yr 22
The Neopian Times Week 79 > Short Stories > Elephante's Quest

Elephante's Quest

by tango783529

Scratching his head, Hoggle continued walking along in his usual thoughtful way. His hat, a red fluffy one with little ear flaps and a string that tied nicely under his chin, was slipping to the side and his scarf, which came in a matching set with the hat, was blowing wildly in the wind.

     Leaves, being windy as it was, were swirling overhead, but nothing seemed to be distracting the old (or shall we say distinguished) Elephante from his thoughts, whatever they were...

     "Excuse me...?"

     A small voice, barely audible due to the weather, was beckoning to the Elephante. Enveloped in his thought process, he didn't even notice the petite lady, dressed smartly in shades of brown and red, her glorious wings pinned lightly back.

     "Excuse me?" she repeated, tapping him on the shoulder lightly.

     With an over-exaggerated squeal, Hoggle leapt into the air in surprise, letting go of the scarf which took the opportunity for escape. They both looked up to the sky as the scarf twisted and turned its way out of sight.

     "I am sorry sir," the lady muttered, looking increasingly embarrassed.

     Hoggle gave a short sharp nod of his head and turned, attempting to continue on his way.

     "No sir. Sorry, but I've been sent to find you. My name is Allie, I'm a Fire Faerie."

     Allie waited, expecting a look of recognition to appear on his face, or what she could see of it. The hat appeared to have slipped down, covering his line of vision.

     She reached over and slid the hat backwards onto the top of his head.

     "Ahh, there you are Sir," she said, smiling sweetly.

     "You'd best come with me if you want something," Hoggle grunted, then turned and carried along on his way.

***

"What do you want?"

     Hoggle was now seated in a rather old (let's call it antique) sofa, staring accusingly at the young Faerie, who stood rather uneasily on the other side of the room.

     "Well, um, you see, um, I'm rather new to all..."

     "Spit it out girl!" he snapped, causing her to leap, almost sending a rather breakable looking ornament to the floor.

     Hastily, arranging the Elephante's belongings, she tried to continue.

     "I'm an Air Faerie I've come to set you a quest."

     Hoggle contemplated this sentence for a moment, scratched his trunk and stamped his foot. It was an interesting process, thinking, in an Elephante of such age (how about maturity?) as Hoggle.

     "I didn't request a quest...?"

     It came out sounding like more of a question than he'd intended, but Allie continued politely,

     "Oh, you don't have to request them anymore. Very random. Elitest you could say. Bit impolite to turn them down."

     "I DON'T want you telling me what's polite and what's not!" Hoggle ranted, his face taking on a shade of red which could easily be compared to the looks of a tomato.

     Allie, looking taken aback, handed him a form she'd been carrying. "What's this?" he asked, fumbling for his glasses.

     "Declaration of Receipt. Just says that I did bring you the quest and it was your choice to decline."

     Hoggle looked up at her, scrutinizing every inch of her face, searching her thoughts (or so it felt to Allie).

     "New to this, you said?" he asked, seeming almost civilized for the first time since they'd met.

     "Ummm... Yes Sir. First day on the job."

     After sitting still and appearing to contemplate for a minute longer, Hoggle jumped up (or as much as an elder such as he, could jump) and went to find his hat.

     Minutes later, the faint sound of Hoggle rushing out of the house was heard, backed by the whistling gail of the outdoors.

     "Hurry up then. I've got a quest to complete!"

***

Hours later, back in the study of Hoggle's house, the new friends sat and spoke of the days events.

     Having finally agreed to the quest, which ironically, turned out to be the retrieval of a scarf, both Elephante and Faerie had set off towards the centre of town.

     First port of call, Shop Wizard, only to find out that he was unwilling to help. Not in the regulations apparently. Same rules apply to all apparently. Hoggle had not taken to this too kindly, being a regular visitor and all that...

     "Cheeky little..." muttered Hoggle.

     Having deliberated over the matter, in the usual Elephante way, in other words, slowly, the search party of two decided to wander round and see if they could see any stalls with scarfs for sale. Having seen a scarf hanging in an arcade just around the corner from the Soup Faerie, they headed over.

     "99,999 NP"

     Hoggle's mouth dropped to the ground.

     "For a SCARF??"

     "It's a very special scarf Sir. Part of a gallery. Picked it up earlier this morning. Used to belong to..." The Salesman began his speech to deaf ears.

     "Funny that. Looks a lot like my scarf," said Hoggle, inspecting the goods.

     Allie intervened before any trouble began with the market folk and had guided Hoggle away.

     Having been searching for a fair few hours now, the two quest-hunters, feeling quite dejected, had suddenly heard the sound of a crowd. Looking up, there stood a building with the letters H....

     "I haven't got my glasses," Hoggle had grumbled.

     E.... L.... and a P !

     "Ahhhh, good news," exclaimed Allie. "We've found Help Chat!"

     Looking at her in complete confusion, Hoggle had just given in and followed the young Faerie in amidst the crowd. Allie, appearing to know what she was doing, had picked up a large sign base and started scribbling what appeared to be a message on it.

     Before they knew it, a number of people had come up, arms filled up with scarves of all colours of the rainbow. Hoggle had looked at them in utter disbelief as they piled the scarves into his arms with him muttering "Thank you" after "Thank you".

     Few minutes later and the sign had vanished, the people stopped coming and the onslaught of scarves had stopped. On counting, 16 scarves had been received.

     Allie grinned.

     "Not bad for a first job was it."

     Hoggle looked around at his 15 scarves, one having gone to the Faerie for the quest.

     "Not bad at all."

***

Hoggle now takes part in quests whenever they are offered and, using the profit from the scarf sales, has even invested in some body building equipment due to the increase in strength he receives from the Quests :)

The End


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