Caution: Quills may be sharp Circulation: 120,559,293 Issue: 234 | 7th day of Eating, Y8
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The Issue

by sarahsmithies


Mrailly wriggled into a more comfortable position in her bed and went back to pondering The Issue. The Issue was none other than her younger sister Fluterfluter. If only Sarah, her owner, hadn't joined that guild. If only Sarah hadn't been persuaded to adopt a third pet. If only… well, Mrailly could go on if only-ing forever. Mrailly could still remember the time when the family consisted of her, Sarah, and her older sister Merthea, and on the very brink of oblivion she could remember when it was just her and Sarah. Those were the good old days…

     With those last happy memories Mrailly slid into dreams of Christmas Unis playing flutes.


     "Mrailly, wake up, wake up, it's the weekend and Sarah said we're going to Faerieland!"

     There was a large thump as a small Christmas Uni jumped onto Mrailly's bed.

     Mrailly moaned and pressed her striped Shoyru hands over her face.

     "Go away, Fluter!"

     "But I'm so excited. I might get to see a real light faerie! I hope I do. I've never seen one. I'm wearing my faerie wings!"

     "Please, Fluter, not the wings, they are so embarrassing! Let me guess, it's like 7:30, ultra early in the morning?"

     "Uh huh. Please get up, Mrailly?"

     "Oh all right."

     The little Uni galloped out the door.


     In the kitchen Mrailly found Sarah looking rather flustered.

     "Hello, Mrailly. Your breakfast's on the table. Fluter, how many times do I have to tell you, you may not take half a ton of make up! And the wings will get caught in your wreath."

     Fluter pouted and pounded upstairs to empty her very full backpack followed by Sarah to ensure she did so. At that moment a yellow Wocky stormed into the room holding a struggling snow kookith.

     "This little devil of yours," the Wocky informed Mrailly sternly, "was crawling all over my desk and soaked my homework in ink that it spilt and now I'm going to do my homework all over again!"

     "Merthea, you know that Tinsel never meant any harm!" cried Mrailly snatching the kookith away from her older sister. "She's my petpet and you're not to touch her!"

     "Give her back, Mrailly!"

     "Stop being so bossy!"

     "Girls, please, we really don't have time for this; the ferry leaves in three quarters of an hour and we can't miss it. I had to book seats!" yelled Sarah from somewhere upstairs.


     A little later Sarah arrived in the kitchen followed by Fluterfluter. Mrailly and Merthea had almost finished their meal and were onto the last stage of cocoa.

     "Girls, remember to pack a drink and something to eat. If you want to buy anything bring your pocket neopoints. Merthea, remember to bring that stationery list. Now, one of you can bring a friend; I booked an extra seat."

     "Oh, Sarah, Sarah, can Delarar come? Pleeeeaaaaase?" piped up Fluter bouncing up and down in her seat.

     "OK, pop round to her place and ask."

     Fluter dashed out the door and in next-door's gate to her friend's home.

     There was a long pause.

     "Sarah, it's not fair; I wanted to invite Tata and Delarar comes everywhere-" began Mrailly.

     "Sorry, sweet, but Fluter did ask and next time Tata can come, I promise."

     "That's what you always say and then-"

     Fluter galloped into the room, a small blue Kougra on her heels.

     "Come on, Delarar, let's get ready to go!" called Fluter over her shoulder.

     Resigned, Mrailly picked up her backpack and began to pack.


     When the family had disembarked from the extremely overcrowded ferry, the youngest two headed straight for the rainbow fountain to watch pets who were fortunate enough to be allowed to bathe in it.

     "Mrailly, look after them for me, stay together and meet me at the Faerieland bookshop at 11o'clock," Sarah told Mrailly sternly.

     Mrailly checked her watch. 10:15. She had to look after her sister for that long?!

     "But-" Mrailly started to protest but her owner pushed her after her sister.


     Twenty minutes later Mrailly was exhausted and on the point of collapsing to the ground, but her young charges were as full of energy as ever.

     "Come on, Dee, let's find a light faerie!" hollered Fluter.

     "Fluter, stop! You're going out of Faerieland--there's nothing out there. We need to meet Sarah--STOP!" cried a very harassed Mrailly.

     "NO," was her sister's only reply.


     What seemed like hours later to a panting Mrailly her younger sister finally came to a stop. By this time Delarar did not seem so keen on finding a light faerie either. All the three could see in any direction was a vast blazing desert made entirely of clouds in all shape and sizes with not a hint of civilisation in sight.

     "Uh, Mrailly?" asked Fluter tentatively.

     "Yep?" sounding a little strained, Mrailly replied to her sister's question.

     "Where are we?"

     "Isn't it kinda obvious?" wailed Mrailly, having finally reached her limits. "We are in a strange place where no-one has never been before; we have no idea which direction is which and we are well and truly lost!"

     Great big tears were beginning to roll down Delarar's cheeks. Her friend was beginning to sniff.

     Mrailly sighed. "I'm sorry, I guess I lost my temper. Maybe if we sit down and have something to eat we'll all feel better."

     All three plopped down onto the cloud they were standing on and pulled out their backpacks.

     "All right, what have you got to eat?" enquired Mrailly.

     Mutely, Fluter pulled out a handful of gobstoppers and two cans of Achyfi from her faerie backpack. Delarar produced some neocola and some chocolate kougras.

     Mrailly picked up a can of Achyfi.

     "-with root extract to give your neopet energy," she read from the back of the tin. "Now we find out where all that appalling energy came from," she complained to herself as she replaced the can.

     "Well, all this is no good," Mrailly announced as she waved a hand over the sweets. "They'll make you even thirstier and as for the drinks-" she grimaced "-the last thing we want is more energy, we won't stop until we're on Kreludor! All I've got is three bottles of water - one each - and a sandwich which isn't nearly enough food for all of us!"


     Three startled heads jerked up.

     High above them were floating hundreds upon hundreds of faerie bubbles.

     Three jaws dropped.

     Fluter started to giggle.

     "There's our food, Mrailly! C'mon, let's get 'em!"

     Without another word she took flight.

     "Hey wait!" cried Mrailly as she took off after Fluter.

     "Don't pop them with those clumsy hooves of yours! WAIT!"

     The two had a marvellous time swooping and diving, snatching at bubbles while Delarar watched a little mournfully from below.

     Once they had gathered all they could carry, the trio sat on a nearby cloud and began to stuff themselves. There is nothing quite like a faerie bubble, the way it sits on your tongue tingling and then -pop!- it bursts, showering your mouth with liquidy goodness.

     Delarar was lying back contented when her head struck something hard.

     "Ow!" she cried.

     Mrailly, seeing tears welling up, grabbed the thing that had caused the disturbance.

     "It's a bottled light faerie!" gasped Fluter in wonder.

     "That's not going to help us get home to mummy!" gulped Delarar.

     "I think it is!" exclaimed Mrailly and without hesitation pulled the cork out of the bottle.

     A great light surrounded them as a voice said:

     "Thank you for doing a noble deed. As a reward for your kindness-"

     "E-ex-c-cuse me?" stuttered Mrailly "D-do you think instead of blessing me you could take us home to our owner Sarah? We were supposed to meet her hours ago!"

     The light faerie didn't reply but the three pets could have sworn they saw the awesome being inside the light smile and nod.

     There was a flash and the three were sucked into a whirlpool of colour and sounds. It felt as if they were experiencing a thousand lives in one single second. As suddenly as it had started it stopped. They were right outside the bookshop. There was Sarah waving at them, clutching a bag of shopping.

     "Hello, you three, did you have a nice time? Did you see a light faerie?"

     Mrailly, Fluter and Delarar caught each others' eyes and before they could stop themselves they collapsed on the ground and laughed.

The End

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