Voice of the Neopian Pound Circulation: 120,559,293 Issue: 234 | 7th day of Eating, Y8
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by kesenaie0


Every day, the Zafara would go fishing in the pond just behind his Neohome. His Zafara paws were great for catching the slippery fish. It brought the poor Zafara food, but also happiness. Fishing was his life. It was not like he ate every fish he had caught, or else the pond would only be filled with salt water and plants. If that happened, you would sit there… for hours, days… months, waiting for nothing.

     The young Zafara had lost its parents, so he lived alone. No one took care of him, but he didn't look forward to an owner. He wanted to be free. He could do anything what he wanted to do, just like the fish in the ocean.

     As he caught a glimpse of a small Goldy, he dove into the water and quickly snatched it out of the low water. His yellow fur was covered with small drops of water, though his paws were completely soaked.

     He did have a rod in his home. An old rod that was bought by his parents. They had spent all their money on the rod, just for the Zafara. They then disappeared after Christmas and the young Zafara never heard from them again. A few tears slid down his cheek, but he then brushed them away with a quick swipe of his paw.

     He looked at the Goldy with pride. It was pretty big, bigger than what it looked like when he first saw it.

     "Come on little Goldy, I'll put ya back…" The young Zafara slowly put the fish back in the water and then let the fish go. It quickly sprinted away. He then smiled and returned to the warmth of his small Neohome.

     The Neohome was a small cottage. It was entirely made out of wood and was, in the Zafara's opinion, really cosy. There was one small wooden bed, made by the young Zafara himself. A yellow carpet, which he had gotten as a Christmas gift from the pound, seeing that the Zafara had no owner. In the corner of the house laid five blankets, all different colours. He had gotten them from the pound too. They had even offered him a shelter there for a new owner, but he had refused.

     He also had gifts from his parents. He had woken up one morning to find them gone. But when he went downstairs, he found a rack filled with fishing stuff. Metal rods, wooden rods, nets and pretty bait, which he actually never used because he thought they were 'too pretty'. Okay, so he did use a few, but only four. There remained eleven more. The bait were made of plastic and they were really nicely colored and were in funny shapes. Faeries, Neopets and various small Petpet bait.

     The Zafara was proud to be a fisher. But he did feel kind of lonely. He wished he could have a fish of his own. He did not want to have a fish from the pond, because those were wild, but a real Petpet, like the Pfish, Peo and the Ghoti. The reason he wanted one of those was mainly because those were used to being Petpets.

     He would dream and sigh, thinking about how he would never be able to get one.

     He would be shocked at how high the prices for Petpets would be. Varying from a thousand to a hundred thousand! Then the Zafara put his worries aside and opened a little can of prunes that was on his wooden table, quickly ate them and then went to bed.

     No use getting upset about a Petpet. Why waste energy on being angry and upset when you have more important things like being happy?


     He woke up, ready for another day of fishing. As he took a glance on his calendar, he saw that it almost was the Month of Awakening. More fish would come to the little pond and more plants would grow. His food did not merely consist of fish and cheap foods in cans, but also cherries, apples and other fruits, fresh from the trees.

     He yawned, stretched his arms and then stood up. He felt like he could take on the world, but that feeling quickly went away as his stomach loudly rumbled. He reminded himself to check if there were any cherries or other fruits growing already. If not, he could always take a fish or quickly run to the shop to buy some canned food.

     He ate a Chilli Salmon Soufflé, home-made of course, and then went outside.

     The sun was still quite low, so it was… quite dark. As the young Zafara was traversing the roads to the pond, he started wondering. Where were his parents? They couldn't have just disappeared like books… He tried to remember anything, maybe something they had said before they disappeared.

     The Zafara sighed. They could not be gone. The Zafara believed that they were still out there. Waiting for the right time to come back and play. Have fun, without any worries. Just have fun…

     The sound of a paw stepping into cold water and the feeling of cold water soaking his yellow fur surprised the young Zafara, causing him to almost fall into the water. He thought he could hear all the fish laugh. And that's when he saw it. A Nuranna, swimming majestic through the water. Small circles appeared on the waters surface, as it headed up to take a breath. Then it dove back in.

     The Nuranna was a Petpet. What was a Petpet doing in a pond full of wild fish? The Zafara watched the elegant Nuranna, swimming around in the pond. It then noticed the curious yellow Zafara watching him. It neared him, slowly and cautious, but still as elegant.

     Aquatic Petpets were beautiful. That was the thought that sprang to the Zafara's mind as he saw the Nuranna. It now was even prettier than before. It was now practically on the Zafara's paw, which was leaning into the water. It was just so pretty. The Nuranna, mind you, not the paw.

     Then, a whole parade of Petpets swam closer to the curious Zafara. Where did they come from? Trunkards, Peos, Ghotis, Tanizards, Waleins, Frownys, Spirkles, Goldys and behind all those Petpets, there came the Slugawoos. It was an incredible sight, all these Petpets living here.

     The Zafara slowly crawled through the water, closer to the Petpets. They all seemed to be comfortable around the Zafara, as none swam away. When the Slugawoos were finally there, the Petpets started squealing happily. A Goldy was jumping up and down in the water and then it hit a Slugawoo with his tail, causing it to fly through the air. And it landed on his shell. The Zafara carefully picked it up and turned it around. But before he could put it back in the water, he noticed a very painful looking burst in its small shell.

     He had fallen on a spiky rock. The Zafara had read some books on these Aquatic Petpets. And in one of the books he had red:


     Ok, so it's not the fastest Petpet in the world, but at least it will never run away!

     If you own one or more of these Petpets you must be very careful. Please note that if you find a little wound or a burst in its shell, do try to not put it in too deep water. It may cause sickness and it is really painful to the Slugawoo.

     He memorized the lines from a book about Aquatic Petpets. He quickly put the Slugawoo on the land. It carried a sad expression, while looking at the other Petpets. The Goldy swam forward, made some squeaky sounds. There then was a haunting silence, but the Slugawoo nodded after a long while.

     The Slugawoo crawled towards the Zafara and into his paw. The Zafara was confused… What? Did it want to come to my home? Joy came to the Zafara while he looked at the Slugawoo. The Slugawoo stared at the Zafara and was looking back at the Petpets and then at the Zafara. He repeated it until the Zafara said, "Okay… I'm not that rich… and I am also quite lonely and I don't know a lot about repairing shells but I do know how to care for Aquatic Petpets. Would you like to stay with me?"

     The Slugawoo nodded, as a sign of understanding.

     "I will bring you here, every day if you want, to see your friends, and I will do my best to care for you!"

     The Neopet and the Petpets had fun until it was very late, splashing, running around and don't forget slipping and falling. It was a grand feast for the Zafara. Then the Zafara took the Slugawoo with him and went home. There he prepared a fairly large plastic 'aquarium' for the Slugawoo. It was opened at the top, which was handy so he could fill it with water without having to make sure that it actually went into the aquarium instead of the table. He filled it with water, but not so that it would go over his shell. He put some rocks in the aquarium and some seaweed that was stuck on the Zafara's paw.

     He then put the Slugawoo in the aquarium, who gave a loving look to the Zafara. Then the Zafara got the strength to carry the aquarium with the Slugawoo to his room. It was just upstairs. He put the aquarium down on a table in his room. "Now… What to name you?"

     He thought. Name ideas floated around in his head, for the Slugawoo needed a name… a name with a meaning to it. The ideas disappeared, as the Zafara was starting to get more and more sleepier. Only one remained.

     "Good night, little fella…" the Zafara said sleepily. He walked towards his bed, lay down, and looked at the aquarium. Happiness spread through him. His dream had come true. Partially, at least. Now his only real quest was to find his parents. Then everything would be complete.

     "Good night… Kes…" the Zafara said sleepily to the Slugawoo. The Slugawoo had been named. It was no special name... just something he thought up. But this name would be special to the Zafara, as it was the name he had given his first Petpet. He looked back at the Slugawoo for a last time, before falling asleep.

     He dreamed… That he would find his parents. He would show them the Slugawoo and he imagined how proud they would be. But the question remained… Would he see his parents? That thought floated around in the little Zafaras mind. While he was lying in his bed, a shadow looked at the small cottage.

     "Thank you for the kind pets that exist in Neopia." The shadow bowed and then left, after throwing away a few plastic bags into a trash can.

The End

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