The Greatest Treasure of All: Part One
Katrina the blue Kacheek sat on a Pink Tile Patio Chair
in the yard outside her neohome, leaning back and enjoying the nice weather. She
was surrounded by Sillie Daisies happily bobbing in the cool breeze. It was a
beautiful, peaceful day. She looked up at the clouds and smiled…
"Ouch!" she suddenly exclaimed. Her annoying
neighbor Ricky, a green Ruki, pointed and laughed at her. He had tipped her
chair over from the back.
She sat up scowled at him. "You're such a jerk!
Did you come over here just to bother me?"
"No," he replied, "but I decided to work that
into my schedule since I was here. I'm really here because Mum wanted to come
over. Your mum sent her an urgent Neomail telling her to come over quick. She
said she had really good news or something. Rita's inside with Aaron."
Katrina liked Rita, who was Ricky's little sister.
She was a sweet and cute baby Ruki, nowhere near as big of a pain as her older
brother. And Aaron was Katrina's adopted brother, about a year older than her,
a red Aisha. He could be nice when he wanted to be, but usually he just ignored
her. Another irritating trait of his was always thinking he knew everything,
never admitting that anyone besides himself was ever right.
"I wonder what the big news is," Katrina wondered
aloud. "Mum didn't say anything about it to me or Aaron." She walked inside
behind Ricky to find her mother, Aaron, Rita, and her little Ona, Dreamer, sitting
in a circle around the dining room table. Her mum looked as if she was about
to explode from keeping an exciting secret hidden for too long.
"I have some fantastic news for everyone," Katrina's
mum gushed once all the members of both families were sitting down. She smiled
at Ricky's mum. Katrina thought it was amazing that her mum and Ricky's could
be best friends, but they were. No one ever would have guessed, considering
the way their kids always argued. "Okay," she continued, and took a deep breath.
"I know we've all been working very hard and that we all deserve this so much.
So I got us all a vacation to Mystery Island for a whole week!"
Katrina nearly gagged. A whole week to be spent
together with her worst enemy? No thank you! she thought.
"Isn't it great?" Katrina's mum said excitedly,
and Ricky's mum joined in the little celebration. But Ricky and Katrina could
not have been less enthusiastic.
They started packing later that day, and they
were to leave first thing in the morning tomorrow.
When they finally arrived, the two mothers went
to check in to where they would be staying for the vacation. They told the kids
to go to the beach to relax, but they ended up on clean-up duty. They were told
to pick up all the garbage on the beach. The grown-ups tried to motivate them
to do it because they "might find a treasure" among the trash. Rita was the
only one who fell for that, but the others felt sorry for her and pitched in
as well. They ended up with a very large pile of random junk, consisting mostly
of bottles of sand.
When the mums came back, they were pleased at
how much the young ones had done. They told them that, as a reward, they could
go to the Cooking Pot and try a bunch of different combinations to make all
kinds of pretty sand sculptures.
On the way there, while dragging along a huge
wagon full of all the sand bottles, they argued over what kinds of sand sculptures
to make. Rita wanted the heart-shaped one, but neither Ricky nor Katrina knew
how to make it, or any other kinds for that matter.
"It's made with a bottle of red sand and one
of black," Aaron brought up to his sister. "Duh, Kat, everyone knows that."
Katrina glared at him and clenched her fists.
It was times like these when she remembered and appreciated the good old days
when she was an only child.
They finally arrived at the Cooking Pot, where
Jhuidah the Island Faerie gave them a warm welcome and greeted them with a sincere
smile. Her beautiful bright pink wings matched the flower in her hair, whose
petals fluttered in the island breeze.
Katrina pointed to the bottles of sand that they
wanted to mix.
"Ah," said Jhuidah, "you plan on creating your
own sand sculptures? Yes, those turn out lovely. I have seen many interesting
types of sculptures made. Which ones will you make? Please choose two items
to put into the pot."
"Okay, red and black first," said Ricky, putting
a Bottle of Red Sand and a Bottle of Black Sand into the Cooking Pot. The pot
bubbled for a while, and then a Heart-Shaped Sand Sculpture could be seen at
the bottom of it.
Jhuidah handed Katrina their new item, congratulating
them on their correct combination. Katrina then passed it to Rita, who smiled
and giggled at the cute little heart of sand she was now holding.
"Good job, children," Jhuidah said softly. "Are
there any other combinations you would like to try?"
"Let's try some pretty colors. Let's mix blue
with purple and see what we get!" said Katrina. And with that, such a simple
statement, an argument was started.
"Katrina, blue and purple wouldn't work," said
"And why not?" Katrina asked, annoyed.
"Because, as everyone knows, that isn't even
a valid combination," Aaron replied very smugly and matter-of-factly. He knew
he was right, and he wasn't afraid to announce it, even if it embarrassed his
"Well, who cares what you say?" Katrina shot
back. "You know, you could be wrong."
"Excuse me? I definitely know a lot more about
things like this than you -"
"Guys!" Ricky cut in.
"What do you want?" yelled Katrina and Aaron
at the same time.
"I think I should decide the next combination."
"And why is that?" asked Aaron.
"Because I'm obviously the smartest one here.
I also did most of the work picking up these bottles while you two lazy Slorgs
sat around doing nothing."
"What? I was sitting around?"
"You were the one who took that twenty-minute
break with that lame excuse that you got sunburned. First of all, it wasn't
even that hot, and you look perfectly fine to me now!"
"You should talk! You were the one who…."
As the fight dragged on, Dreamer started softly
pllllrrrrr-ing and burying her head in Rita's lap, wishing the yelling
would stop. Rita kept quickly turning her head every few seconds to look at
who was speaking (or rather, shouting) at the moment. Jhuidah simply sighed
and shook her head, not believing how long an argument could go on that was
started by something so trivial as an incorrect recipe. She knew she had to
do something, say something to stop the pointless arguing.
"May I please offer a suggestion to you, children?"
she said, trying her best to stay calm.
Everything was suddenly silent as the three bickering
pets stopped to listen to the Island Faerie's advice.
"All right, well, I have a secret recipe for
you. No one else knows it but those who stumble upon it by luck, or those who
I deem worthy enough to tell."
The three leaned in closer to Jhuidah, eyes wide
open, ready to hear the super secret recipe.
"I see you are very… erm… enthusiastic when it
comes to the Cooking Pot, so I think you should know," Jhuidah continued. "The
recipe is for a Bottled Faerie. A Bottled Faerie can be created by two nearly
worthless items. It is quite a good deal. Think of it: spending a mere fifty
Neopoints or so to get two items, then mixing them here to create something
worth a few thousand. Not much, right? But what if you do this every day? Your
profits will be in the very high thousands, and you can get rich! ... Of course,
you three wouldn't be interested, would you?"
"No, we are, we are!" said Ricky loudly.
"Yes, please tell us!" Katrina begged.
"Well, okay then. The recipe is a Faerie Cake
and a Bottle of Blue Sand. That creates a Bottled Water Faerie," she whispered
in their ears.
The words had barely left her lips when Ricky,
Katrina, and Aaron zoomed off to get a Faerie Cake from the Island Market.
Jhuidah smiled at Rita and Dreamer, who were
left sitting there alone, and they smiled back. Then she let out a large breath
of relief, glad to have the loud, squabbling pets out of her company for a while.
Rita and Dreamer began playing quietly together as Jhuidah went about her business.
When the three others returned with a Plain Faerie
Cake, they wanted to see right away if the recipe worked. They tossed the cake
and one of the bottles of sand from their wagon into the pot and stirred vigorously.
After much bubbling, the liquid cleared and the pets peered into the pot to
see their new Bottled Faerie. But what they found didn't exactly look like a
Katrina reached in and pulled out the item inside.
There was a bottle, but no Faerie.
Immediately Aaron and Ricky began to quarrel.
"It didn't work! It's all your fault!"
"My fault? How is it my fault? It's totally your
"No, I told you not to get the Plain Faerie Cake.
I knew it was supposed to be a Chocolate one! But noooo, you insisted on the
"Well, maybe it's not that! Maybe the way you
stirred was the reason it didn't work!"
"That's dumb! Why would it be -"
"Guys?" said Katrina, who had been examining
the bottle for quite some time now.
"There's a paper inside." Katrina uncorked the
bottle and took out the little scroll that was inside.
"Who cares?" said Ricky. "I wanted a Faerie!"
"It looks like a… a treasure map!"
"A what?" exclaimed Aaron, as he and Ricky
crowded around the bottle and the paper with Katrina.
It was a map of Mystery Island, and there was
an "X" marking the spot on the Tombola stand. There was a little inscription
at the bottom:
Cross rivers deep, climb mountains tall
And you shall unlock the greatest treasure
To be continued...