Preparing Neopia for the Meepits Circulation: 155,374,082 Issue: 216 | 11th day of Storing, Y7
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Stories in the Storm


by lavendergoddess79

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Kalena felt the cold surround her as soon as she opened the door of the training school and stepped out onto the street. The sun was covered up by a thick layer of grey clouds, and a strange sort of silence filled the air. Most of the residents of Mystery Island were already in their neohomes. No one wanted to be outside when the big storm came this afternoon. In fact, Kalena had been the only one to attend her class at the training school that day.

      The island Kacheek walked quickly, wanting to get home before it rained, which might happen any minute. But as she walked she noticed a red Ixi sitting at the side of the path. Kalena remembered seeing this pet in the same spot that morning when she was on her way to her training class. The Ixi's paws still rested gently on the ground behind her, and she was still gazing calmly into the distance, not making a sound. It seemed that she hadn't moved at all since that morning.

      Kalena slowly approached the Ixi, wondering if this pet could use her help. But as she stood next the Ixi, Kalena suddenly felt afraid, and wanted to quickly turn and go home. Though she hadn't so much as looked at Kalena, something about the Ixi seemed cold and unfriendly in an eerie way. Though her better judgement told her to leave quickly, the Kacheek had already made up her mind. So Kalena took a deep breath and began to speak.

      "Hi," she said, "Umm, are you-"

      "Lost?" the Ixi interrupted, not turning to look at Kalena. "No. I'm just…" the Ixi paused for a moment, not taking her eyes off of the trees in the distance, "waiting."

      "My name's Kalena," Kalena said, sitting down next to the Ixi, who nodded her head, still not looking at the island Kacheek. For a moment, no one spoke.

      "What's yours?" Kalena asked.

      "Melika," the Ixi said after a moment.

      "So who are you waiting for?" Kalena asked.

      "No one." Melika sighed. Kalena could tell that the Ixi didn't want to talk about it anymore, so she dropped the subject. Though she couldn't help but noticing how dark the sky had gotten.

      "There's a storm coming," Kalena said, "You should probably go home." As soon as she saw the look on Melika's face, Kalena regretted saying this.

      "Or you can stay with me," she quickly suggested.

      Melika turned to look at Kalena for the first time.

      "That would be great."

      ***

      The two pets covered their heads with their arms as they ran, trying to escape the rain. It was already pouring outside, and they were nowhere near Kalena's neohome.

      "Let's go this way. It's a short cut," Kalena said, pointing at a sign that read 'Geraptiku.'

      Melika stopped in her tracks. A frightened look came onto her face.

      "I don't know," she said, taking a step backwards, "Let's stay out of here."

      "Come on," Kalena said, heading into the ruined city, "It's the fastest way to my neohome."

      Melika stood still for a moment, but then ran past the sign after her new friend. By now the pets were drenched, and the rain was only getting harder. The two of them walked into the center of Geraptiku.

      Kalena shivered as she watched the trees that surrounded them sway in the wind, most of them looking as though they might fall over at any moment.

      "Uh, I don't think it's safe to go any further," Kalena said, "What if those trees fall over or something?"

      "Let's go back the way we came, then," Melika whispered.

      "Umm, Well…" Kalena pointed at the trees that they had passed through to enter this place, all of which were being furiously blown about by the wind. She was afraid to go back through them.

      "Let's go in here, then," Melika said, pointing at an empty hut. She rushed inside, and was quickly followed by Kalena. The two pets sat down on the dry ground underneath the grass ceiling.

      "Well," Kalena said, rubbing her paws together to warm them up, "At least it's dry in here. So what do we do now?"

      "Wait for the storm to pass, I guess," Melika said.

      "Yeah," Kalena said, sighing. She leaned back and listened to the rain pounding on the roof of the hut and the wind blowing around them. After only a few minutes she got bored, and started tapping the ground with her paw. Melika ignored this at first, but it became obvious that she was bothered by the noise Kalena was making.

      "Stop," she said, "Let's just talk."

      "Okay," Kalena said, "What do you want to talk about?"

      Melika paused for a moment.

      "How about I tell you a story?" she asked.

      "Oh, that sounds great," Kalena said, smiling. "Tell me."

      "Alright," Melika began, "There once was a small group of neopets who lived apart from all of the others. They called themselves the villagers, and all other pets were known as the outsiders. None of the villagers had ever seen an outsider.

      "During the early days of Neopia, faeries visited the island on which the villagers lived. The faeries taught the villagers magic, which they used ever since. The magic was passed down through generations, and hundreds of years later it was still being used by the descendants of the villagers.

      "But as time went by, other pets came to live on the island. They moved from all different parts of Neopia. The villagers, however, were vain and wanted the magic all to themselves. They felt that the magic was theirs, and did not share it with the newcomers.

      "Unfortunately for them, Jhuidah, the island faerie, was not happy about this. She felt that all of the pets should be able to use the magic, and she threatened to take away the villagers' ability to use it. So the villagers made a deal with her. Jhuidah said that if the villagers hid their city from the rest of the island and never saw another outsider, they could keep their powers. But if the city was ever found, their magic would be taken away.

      "So that's just what the villagers did. They hid their city amongst the trees, and vowed to never leave it. For years they used their magic to make themselves happy, and to keep their perfect city just the way they wanted it. But then, things changed.

      "It started on a night like tonight. A few curious neopets that lived on the island decided to go exploring. They went out into the forest of the island, and came further than any other outsider had come before. Needless to say, they were shocked at what they found when they came across the city.

      "The villagers lost their magical abilities, and the city was reduced to ruins. The neopets who had discovered the ruined city were quick to tell other outsiders, and the place soon became a tourist attraction. They named the city Geraptiku, though it had never actually had a name in the past.

      "No one knows what happened to the villagers. Some say they fled the city and moved to another location. Others say they were separated after the destruction of their city. The only magical item each villager is said to still have is a coin with a picture of a palm tree on it. Each villager had carried one of them with them all the time for good luck.

      "It just goes to show you what happens when you're selfish. The villagers tried to keep their magic all to themselves, and now look what happened to this place. I suppose it's only fair in the end." Melika paused for a moment.

      "Let's go to your neohome, now," she said.

      Kalena looked around her, and noticed that the storm had ended.

     ***

      "Here we are," Kalena said, opening the door to her neohome. The two pets quickly went inside.

      "It's nice," Melika said, looking around at the furniture that decorated the living room. There was a table, a rug, and a bunch of chairs.

      "Yeah," Kalena said, "I like it here." She noticed that her friend was glancing around the room uneasily.

      "I can't stay long," Melika said, "But it's nice to see what your neohome looks like." She turned her gaze to Kalena's left.

      Kalena turned her back to Melika for a moment to see what her friend was looking at. There didn't seem to be anything there.

      "So," Kalena said, still gazing at the spot Melika had been staring at, "Mind telling me where you come from?"

      Her question was returned with silence. After a moment, Kalena turned around. Melika was nowhere in sight. She was gone, and hadn't left even a trace.

      Then Kalena saw something. Lying on the ground as if someone had carefully set it there was a large gold coin. On it was a picture of a palm tree.

      Kalena picked it up. She decided to keep it. Maybe it would bring her good luck.

The End

 
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