Meow Circulation: 112,982,760 Issue: 225 | 27th day of Sleeping, Y8
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Sleeping Beauty: Part Four

by ruff_zette


I flick my hair and take a few steps. Mum is so proud. I model clothes too, and just think of all the money! The citizens of Faerieland are screaming for me (just like always) because of my amazing beauty.

     The crowd is massive! Pets from all over Neopia have come to see me. I am always busy signing autographs and such (I have a very hectic life). After modelling I usually have to do interviews ("How DO you make yourself so beautiful?") and talk to my fans. I have so many fans, and I don't want to let them down. Soon, I will be in a Beauty Contest, and then I will have even more…

     * * * * *

     "Beauty, you have to get up!"

     I looked blearily towards the doorway and made out the shape that was Sparkle.

     "Come on!" she urged. "We have to go to Neoschool."

     Neoschool. I couldn't go. I just couldn't. I had to think of a way to get out of it - and fast. "I can't," I moaned. "I'm sick." I tried to make it sound believable, and I think it worked.

     "You're sick?" Sparkle looked concerned. "Do you want me to be your doctor? My plushies can be the nurses and secataries."

     "It's 'secretaries,' you idiot," I snapped. "I don't trust you to be my doctor anyway. Go and get Mum, or Honey, or anybody but you!"

     She ran out of the room, hollering for Mum, who came almost instantly. She rushed to my side. "Oh, Beauty! Of all the luck - sick on the first day of Neoschool!" Then a look of alarm came over her face. "I'm not going to be here today! I have to go to Tyrannia, and you can't come - not in your condition. Will you be okay at home alone?"

     "I'm sure I will," I said, trying my best to sound sick. It worked.

     For the rest of the morning (before everyone left) I was treated like a queen! Honey brought me books to read, Sparkle brought me plushies to curl up with and Mum brought me every kind of food you can imagine! I had omelettes, milkshakes, toast, pancakes, juice and Neocrunch (it had to last me all day - "you're in no condition to get your own food from the kitchen!").

     And eventually the time came for them to leave. They all came in looking solemn (it's snot like I was dead or anything) and Mum came and sat on my bed. "Goodbye, Beauty," she said and kissed me on the nose. "Sparkle and Honey will be back at about 4 o'clock, and me at about 5, okay?" I nodded and they left.

     As soon as I heard the front door close I was up and over to my vanity desk. I stared at my reflection and (as always) its ugly face stared back at me. I looked down at my large collection of makeup. I wished I had bought some more while I was in Neopia Central…

     An idea struck me. An idea that could work. After all, I DID have all day. Hours to waste. Neopia Central wasn't that far away.

     After I managed to prise open my money box and take all the Neopoints I needed, I was off. I didn't take any of my makeup with me, as I was just going to buy new stuff anyway. This made my bag really light, so I decided to take some other stuff. I took Honey's scarf (to wrap around my face), Sparkle's hat and Mum's handbag.

     Done up like that, I was unrecognisable, so off I went.

     It was a long walk, and it was really, really, REALLY hot. I was tempted to take off the scarf, but I didn't want to give away my identity. I was not going to let myself be caught. After all, I had come this far, hadn't I?

     After a while, I realised it wasn't just hot - it was humid. Was it going to rain later? That might be good, because then it would be cooler. (Plus, it would delay Mum, Sparkle and Honey - therefore giving me more time to get home.) "Please rain." Talking to myself. Again. Why do I do it?

     I stared at my hooves as I walked and it suddenly occurred to me that the sand of the Lost Desert had given way to grass. What did we pass after we left the Desert? I looked up and panicked. I was in the Haunted Woods. Of course I had been there before, but only with my whole family with me. This time I was alone.

     I turned to see how far it was back to the Desert, but I couldn't even see the rolling sand dunes. Was this a trick? Surely only minutes ago I had been walking across them? I didn't know what to do. Maybe the pets here were nice. Maybe all the terrible things about them were just rumours.

     "Umm… Hello?" I yelled. I stopped and listened. No answer. "Somebody help! I'm lost! How do I get out of here?" I hoped against everything that some sweet little Wocky would come out of the trees and show me the way back home.

     I screamed. A Wocky had come out of the trees. But they weren't sweet and they weren't little. And I severely doubted that they were going to show me how to get home.

     "Help!" I wailed. "Oh please, stay away! Don't hurt me! I just want to get out of here, honest!" I turned and tried to run, but my long, orange tail caught on something and I fell over.

     "I'm not goin' ta hurt ya!" The Wocky lumbered towards me, hands outstretched.

     I tried to scrabble away, while kicking at him with my hooves at the same time. "Get back! If you take one step closer I'll…" I paused. What would I do? "I'll kick you!"

     He backed away slightly. I felt satisfied. He was scared - that would give me time to escape. I leapt to my feet and started sprinting away. I wasn't sure which direction I was going - I just knew I was getting out of there.

     Twigs and leaves tangled in my mane and tail - I vaguely wondered how bad I looked. I finally collapsed in a hollow tree, gasping for breath. Suddenly I panicked. "Oh no!" I felt around on the ground, and then buried my head in my hooves. "I lost it!" I wailed. "I - I lost the scarf and - and the hat! I even lost Mum's handbag!" I started crying. How could a simple little trip to Neopia Central have gone so wrong?

     After I was rested (and feeling half-alive again) I set off to try and find my way home. It was a miserable journey. I was dirty and scared and hungry and, worst of all, I was alone. I didn't even focus on where I was going. I just walked.

     It was dark by the time I felt the sand beneath my feet. I was so relieved that I ran all the way home, laughing hysterically.

     Well, actually, I ran as far as a certain house, where the noise I was making lured someone from their house.

     "Beauty? What are you… Oh my god, are you okay?" Battle_Galactic was running down the front path towards me. "What happened to you?" He was staring at me in horror. I realised how awful I must have looked.

     "The Haunted Woods happened to me! I got lost. Oh it was just awful!" I didn't cry, but I stopped laughing. And then I realised something I was just dying to know. "How do you know my name?"

     "What? Oh… I heard your friends talking to you."

     What? Friends? I had absolutely no idea what he was talking about. Maybe… "You mean my sisters?"

     "Yeah, that's probably it. The pets you were at the beach with." He sighed. "You're lucky. I'm an only pet. I wish I had brothers and sisters."

     I laughed. Suddenly I realised that I wasn't self-conscious. Not at all. And then I became more self conscious than I had ever been in my entire life. Hadn't he looked properly at my face yet?

     "I have to go." I turned and ran away down the street. He might have shouted after me but I'm not sure. And I didn't stop to check.

     * * * * *

      I forced open the door and practically fell into the house. I looked up and suddenly felt sick (not lying this time!). Mum, Honey and Sparkle were sitting at the kitchen table, their plates already empty (even though mine was still full). They were all glaring at me (and not one of them seemed to notice that I was wearing half the forest).

     "I thought you were sick." Mum's voice was low and dangerous, like she was at an execution.

     "Err… I got better?" I felt like somebody had just dropped an incredibly large chunk of ice in my stomach.

     "You are in big trouble, Beauty_Queen571. And you are most definitely going to Neoschool tomorrow. Now go to bed!" Mum stood up and pointed upstairs, her face furious.

     "Fine!" I stormed up to my room. I sat down at my vanity table and tried to comb some of the tangles out of my mane, and failed miserably.

     And then I went to bed miserable. Miserable and crying.

     "Why is life so unfair?"

To be continued...

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Other Episodes

» Sleeping Beauty: Part One
» Sleeping Beauty: Part Two
» Sleeping Beauty: Part Three
» Sleeping Beauty

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