How to Deal with a Brat
"AAAAAAAcccckk!" Dicie looked up from her faerie pancakes
and saw Halie dash through the kitchen, yellow fur trailing behind her. Sybia,
the Flotsam Avalon had recently adopted, was running (don't ask me how something
with no legs can do this, but it sounded better then 'scootching', okay?) after
her. She rolled her eyes and went back to poking her pancakes with a fork.
Avalon, hair flopping in her face and circles
under her eyes, appeared at the doorway, looking very run-down. "Did they...
Dicie gestured to the hall with her head.
"Oh." Her mom continued walking. The blue Hissi
sighed and picked up an issue of The Neopian Times. A cool breeze was floating
through the open windows. It was a sunny, hot summer day and everybody was getting
ready for a trip to Neopia Central.
It was Sunday, and Avalon had been running around
the house, picking up school supplies for tomorrow. Being the last day of summer
vacation, they had a LOT of plans. First Sybia needed new school stuff, Halie
needed a haircut, and Dicie needed (well, wanted) a new subscription to a magazine
that printed all of the comics in the 'Times, but more, called Sneak Peeks.
"But mom, I WANT long hair!" Halie complained.
They were walking toward the Grooming Parlor and the Acara was fingering her
fur. A hyper Sybia had just been satisfied with two bags full of fire faerie
notepads and pencils and all that junk. Dicie was calmly staring at the bookshop,
a 20%-off sign in the window and Avalon's arms full of books. The hot sun was
beating down on them and the other (and very few) shoppers who chose to leave
their cool houses for the burning heat of the market square. A rainbow Aisha
pushed by them, jostling Avalon's load.
"Some pet!" A brown-haired girl shoved her way
past them. Avalon glowered at her.
"Some people is more like it!" she muttered,
and shifted the books. Halie glanced over her shoulder and rolled her eyes.
The next morning the three were walking to neoschool,
a sleepy Halie just barely keeping her book bag from sliding off her shoulder.
Sybia was bouncing happily along, a Space Faerie backpack going up and down.
Dicie had her nose stuck in a book and almost hit a passing tree.
"Sybia, don't you have to be hyper somewhere
else?" Halie yawned.
Her younger sister considered this and then
grinned. "Not 'till ummmm..." She glanced at her wrist.
"Oh, darn! My watch stopped!" A Tonu passing
by let out a snort that only the two eldest pets could recognize for laughter.
Sybia looked up, confused.
Halie slapped her on the back and giggled, "He
was laughing! He thought you were funny!"
Dicie looked up at this and laughed. "Sybie,
oh, never mind." She looked back down at her book with a grin.
A couple minutes later, they arrived at school.
The bell had already rung, but the steady streams of students were still filing
into the marble building. As they walked in Sybia was swept away by a yellow
Usul, who was wearing a nametag reading 'Mrs. Henderson.' Dicie and Halie continued
on their way, Dicie expertly dodging people.
Halie stopped at a room with '5A' painted on
the door and waved at the Hissi, who nodded back. As she wound her way through
the hallway she carefully marked her page and slid it into her satchel.
"Hiya!" Dicie grinned when she saw a yellow
JubJub hopping toward her. "Roxa!" she exclaimed and gave a nod at her best
"So, didja hear who our teacher is?" Always
the gossip, Roxa slid next to Dicie, who rolled her eyes.
"Mrs. Cornpepper!" She widened her eyes. "You
know, that faerie Uni!" Dicie laughed at her friend's mock surprise. Roxa answered
this action with a fake, dramatic sticking of the nose in the air and huffed,
fluffing her fur.
They finally came upon a room labeled '7C' and
walked inside. There was no sign of the teacher, but the desks were already
more then half full. Dicie and Roxa sat down in two desks, Roxa right in front
"Hey, Dice!" The Hissi looked around and saw
a blue Quiggle waving at her.
"Hi Sandy!" she exclaimed, then turned back
around, peering over the top of Roxa's head.
A faerie Uni had entered the room, a rainbow
Aisha in tow. Dicie recognized her from the market square.
"Class, this is Melody! She is new to this school,
so I'm hoping that you will make her comfortable." Mrs. Cornpepper paused, and
then added, "Perhaps you will like to tell something about yourself?"
Melody looked thoughtful, and then said, "No."
Startled, the teacher looked at her, and then got over it.
"Well, you're sitting in the empty seat next
to the cloud Poogle, Polli, in the front." Melody complied, sliding into the
seat. Dicie exchanged a look with Sandy, saying 'Snob' with a roll of her black
eyes. Sandy turned a laugh into a loud, hacking cough, causing Melody to turn
"You should get that checked," she said. "You
could have warts." Melody indicated to her purple and green throat. "Kissed
any Mortogs lately?" Sandy was rendered speechless, which Melody took as her
suffocating. She instantly leapt up and attempted the Heimlich maneuver, which
Sandy took quite badly.
"What do you THINK!?" the Quiggle yelled. "Mortogs
practically ARE Quiggles! Why would I kiss one of THEM when I wouldn't even
kiss my SISTER!" Roxa scowled at him.
"Hey!" Sandy and Roxa were sisters. Their owner,
bom_diggety, was a friend of Avalon's. Melody let go of him and rubbed her chin.
"Fine. But if you catch a disease, don't come
wailing to me." She sat down next to Polli and crossed her legs, folding her
arms over her chest.
Dicie lowered her eyes. Roxa laughed and then
lowered her head. Polli scootched away from the strange Aisha.
Mrs. Cornpepper shook her head at the commotion
then held up a stack of papers. "Okay, class! We're going to fill out a question
sheet about ourselves! Then, when we are all done, I'll read a few out loud
and you guess who the person is!"
A Peophin, Gem, placed a packet onto each pupil's
desk. Dicie picked hers up and bit the end of her pencil. She read it over,
and then began filling it in.
Around a half hour later Mrs. Cornpepper collected
the papers and picked three out. "Okay, class! Let's see..." She set two packets
down and flipped to the first page of the one still in her hooves. She cleared
"Favorite color: Mother-of-pearl. Favorite place:
Faerieland. Middle name: Fyora. Petpet's name: winged_gaurdian. Age: 4 years.
Owner's middle name: no owner..." Mrs. Cornpepper paused, and then continued.
"Favorite toy: Supreme Deluxe Faerie Queen Doll." She stopped, looked faintly
surprised, and then composed her face again. "Who would like to guess who this
The entire class, except for Melody, raised
their hands/flippers/hooves/tails. Like a chorus, they all said, "Melody," at
exactly the same time.
Mrs. Cornpepper sighed slightly. "Yes, it is
Melody." The bell rang just as she picked up another paper and the class stampeded
out the door. It was lunchtime.
Dicie picked up her sandwich and took a bite,
eyeing Roxa's sugary meal with distaste. Of course, the JubJub probably needed
a lot of sugar in order to keep bouncing off the walls as she did.
"So, what's with Melody?" Roxa asked, eating
a spoonful of ice cream. "Did you see how she filled out the paper? Do you think
she really doesn't have an owner? And if she does actually not have an owner,
how did she get a Supreme Deluxe Faerie Queen Doll? Something's fishy, and it
isn't your tuna sandwich."
Sandy slid into the seat across from Roxa, next
to Dicie. "What are you people talking about?" She picked up her chocolate milk
and slurped contentedly.
Roxa stuck out her blue-stained tongue. "Melody,"
she said witheringly. Sandy spit the milk out, the stream just narrowly missing
"Sorry 'bout that," she gasped, laughing and
wiping milk off her chin. "What's she done?"
Dicie and Roxa looked at her, surprised. "What's
she DONE?" Roxa screamed. "Nobody without an owner could afford to go to Faerieland
and be painted rainbow and have a Supreme Deluxe Faerie Queen Doll!" She sputtered,
taking a bite of a candy bar and making a face; it was full of peanuts.
Sandy puffed out her cheeks and tapped her fingers
on the table. "Sorry, I wasn't really paying attention during class today. She
wrote all that down?"
Dicie nodded. "That and she's a snob. Did you
see how she treated Mrs. Cornpepper and Polli?" She took another bite of her
lunch. "I doubt that, if she was an orphan, she would be so stuck-up. I think
she's showing off."
Sandy nodded thoughtfully as the bell rang once
more. "I'll look up on that," she muttered. Dicie took one last bite of her
lunch before tossing it into the trashcan. She wondered what Sandy had in mind.
The class gathered back into the classroom,
all taking their seats. Except for Melody, that is. She just sat down at the
teacher's desk, feet on a stack of papers. Mrs. Cornpepper eyed the Aisha and
said, "Melody, would you like to sit at your desk?"
Melody looked at the teacher in bewilderment.
"You mean I have to sit there? Why?"
Mrs. Cornpepper cleared her throat. "It's your
assigned seat. You will sit there until the end of the year. Besides," she added.
"That's my desk."
Melody sighed and shuffled over to the empty
desk. Mrs. Cornpepper straightened the papers and sat down.
Dicie looked over her shoulder at Sandy, who
was staring at Melody with squinted eyes. She turned her gaze on Dicie and shook
Mrs. Cornpepper cleared her throat and opened
her mouth. Before she could say anything Melody piped up in the first row.
"Are you planning on teaching us anything that's
actually worthwhile to know?" She crossed her legs and sighed. "I guess not."
Mrs. Cornpepper stood up and stamped her hoof.
"Melody, I will not tolerate you speaking out in class! One more disturbance
and you will be sent to the principal's office."
Melody rolled her eyes. "Yippee." Dicie's head
throbbed to hear the Aisha speak so nonchalantly at the teacher.
When Dicie, Halie, and Sybia entered their house
at 3:34 NST they found it empty. Dicie spotted a note on the refrigerator that
'I'm at the store. Do you know anything about
what happened to the two pounds of flour I bought the other day? Well, tell
me if you do...
Dicie read it aloud and looked at Halie, who
had begun to turn red and slowly sink into her chair. "Does this have anything
to do with those fourteen pans of brownies I saw on the kitchen counter this
Halie grinned. "Maybe..."
Dice sighed and saw a new neomail. "I'll get
it! I'll get it!" shouted a much less guilty looking Halie. She dashed to the
box and ripped the message out.
"Hmmm..." She sighed. "It's for you, Dicie!"
Dicie grabbed the paper from her sister and
She finished it, lowered the paper, and slowly
began to smile.
Four days later Avalon sent the three off to
neoschool. Halie had avoided her mother's eyes the entire morning and she was
They reached school on time and split up, Halie
to 5A, Sybia to 4A, and Dicie to 7C. When she slithered into the room she ran
straight into Sandy. They grinned at each other and Dicie took her position
behind the radiator.
Sandy was busy fiddling with a small purple
box when Melody sauntered through the door. She had a new collar and three noisy
bracelets on her front left paw.
Roxa, who was sitting at her desk, looked up
as Melody passed. "Well, look who decided to show her face today!" she muttered,
doodling on a piece of scrap paper.
Melody, in turn, scrutinized Roxa's drawing
with distaste. "A Glamour Negg? Puh-lease, that looks nothing like a Negg. And
I should know. I've eaten a Negg every day since I was born." She sniffed, stuck
her nose in the air, and strutted on past her.
Sandy signaled Dicie and she covered her mouth
for fear of laughing. Melody sat on her desk for a few minutes until the classroom
had filled and Mrs. Cornpepper entered.
"Melody, we talked about this yesterday; sit
in your seat!" The Aisha crossed her arms and dutifully sat down.
Instantly Sandy flipped a small red switch on
the box and Melody's chair gave way. She fell through the plastic and onto about
a dozen water balloons piled under her. They burst at her weight and she found
herself sitting in a pile of balloon scraps and whipped cream.
Melody had just enough time to catch her breath
before she was sent skidding across the floor by a small kick in the back, courtesy
of a certain Hissi. She wailed as she plowed straight to the west wall. Before
she hit it Sandy pressed a small button and a net full of multicolored recess
They bounced around the room while Melody bumped
into one after the other. She was right about to ram into the closed door when
it swung open and a bucket of water emptied itself right on her.
The classroom was silent for a fraction of a
second before it burst into hysterical laughter. Sandy wiped fake tears from
her eyes as Melody sat on the floor covered in whipped cream and ice water.
"Mrs. Cornpepper!" she bawled. "Did you see
what they did to me?"
The teacher stood up and looked down at the
still seated Melody. "I think, considering how you have acted in the past few
days, you utterly deserve this. I take it that you shall act kinder to your
fellow classmates? I would hate to have to send you to the principal's office
in addition to this?"
Melody clamped her mouth shut and nodded wildly.
Dicie looked around the room and smiled contently. Melody knew what was best
for her now. She wouldn't be bothering them for a long time...