Baery's Quest: Part One
He was born from the smallest of Draik eggs, into a family of Draiks. He was always the runt and the smallest of his older brothers, but he also knew he was destined to be greatest of all of them. That was what he liked to dream anyway. While sitting at his desk in Neoschool, he would really be off in some foreign land battling evil and defending justice.
In fact, let's start out story right there.
“Baery... Baaeeerryy... BAERY!” The young blue Draik was snapped out of his trance by the harsh voice of Miss Longears, the disco Aisha that taught his class. He was sure she must’ve been fun and wild once – but now she was just old and ornery.
“Yes, Ms. Longears?” the small Draik asked respectfully.
“Can you please repeat what I just told to the class, Baery?” the old Aisha said in her fakely nice voice. Baery hesitated.
“What I just told to the class, Baery,” he recited, staring straight at his teacher with his biggest innocent eyes ever.
“I beg your pardon?” she snapped.
“Well, Ms. Longears, you asked me to repeat-”
“I know very well what I said, Baery – now would you be so kind as to visit the principal now?” Baery sighed. Once again, another visit to the Principal’s office.
“Whatever...” the young Draik muttered, heading for the door.
“What was that?” squealed the teacher after him.
“YES, MS. LONGEARS,” he said loudly enough for the next classroom to hear. He opened the door and hopped into the hallway with drooped shoulders. With a sigh, he headed for the principal’s office.
“Landon, I’ve told you once – I’ve told you a million times! Although Mr. Weatherby is a chocolate Kacheek, he is NOT for eating!” the principal was yelling as Baery entered the office. The blue Draik paused at the door as the principal paused his haranguing to look at him.
“Maybe I should come back later?” Baery said hesitantly, backing out the door.
“No,” the principal yelled. “Just take a seat beside your brothers and I’ll get to you eventually.” Baery sighed and sat down beside the two Draiks, who were indeed, his brothers. The Draik sitting in front of the Mr. Reptillior’s desk was also his brother. Mr. Reptillior returned to yelling at the Draik in front of his desk.
“What’re you in for?” the brother beside him, Jake, asked conspiratorially.
“I repeated Ms. Longears,” Baery whispered back. “You?”
“Joshie and I accidentally knocked over the paint buckets in art,” Jake said with a sigh.
“We only regret that we missed red,” Joshie whispered past Jake with a smirk on his face. The two Draiks were twins, although Joshie was white and Jake was shadow.
“How’d they catch you?” Baery asked curiously.
“Red-handed, I’m afraid,” Joshie said, showing his palms. “Or should I say rainbow-handed.” The white Draik’s paws were no longer white at all, but purple, blue, green, yellow, shadow, and orange.
“What’d Landon do?” the youngest brother asked, meaning the royal boy Draik being scolded by Mr. Reptillior.
“From what we can gather, he tried to take a chunk out of Mr. Weatherby,” Joshie answered.
“He only got the cherry on top, though,” Jake finished with a grin.
“Will you three STOP whispering!” The principal’s yell made them all leap out of their seats, their wings instinctively carrying them to the ceiling. Mr. Reptillior smiled with satisfaction. “That’s better – now that I’m finished with Landon, you may all go home.”
“What?” Jake cried with indignation. “Not even a lecture?! Come on, Reppy, that ain’t fair!”
“What’s fair and what isn’t fair, Jakendraik, is for me to say and you to go along with,” the principal said. “Now leave before I put you in detention.” The four brothers were gone.
Outside the brothers strolled along, whistling tunes and punching each other playfully. A few blocks from their street, the twins snatched Landon’s royal cap off his head and began to play keep away, running up the street with a yelling Landon behind them. Baery smiled, watching them get farther and farther ahead and knowing his small wings and legs could never catch up with them.
He was just about to return to the battle he had been daydreaming about in class when BAM! he was thrown off the sidewalk and something strong pulled away his backpack. The young Draik whirled around to see the two people he least liked in all of Neopia.
“Give it back,” Baery said angrily to the Darigan Jetsam that was now holding his backpack. The Halloween Ixi beside him snickered.
“Give it back, what?” the Ixi taunted.
“Give it back now,” Baery replied.
“Or what? You’ll pinch me?” the Jetsam, Oakley, asked.
“I’ll punch your face in!” Baery said viciously. He was sick of being picked on.
“Can you reach it?” Oakley asked, roaring with laughter. His companion, Meakin, laughed even louder. Filled with fury, Baery rammed a fist into the Jetsam’s stomach. Immediately, the laughter stopped. “You’ll pay for that, worm,” Oakley said dangerously, handing Baery’s backpack to Meakin. Pulling back a fin, he rolled it into a fist. As he swung it through the air to punch the small Draik in front of him, he blinked when he realized it wasn’t moving. He looked slowly around and found himself staring straight into the eyes of a very unhappy Joshie.
“You have something to say to our brother?” Landon asked the now trembling Jetsam. Jake had Meakin in a headlock. “Do you?” Landon demanded forcefully.
“N-no sir,” Oakley stuttered.
“Then will you kindly return his bag?” Jake said, his voice as forceful as Landon’s. “We’re late for our dinner.” At the sound of ‘our dinner’ the Jetsam whimpered. Meakin hurriedly threw the bag at Baery who caught it with an angry expression. The twins then took their charges and threw them over the hedge that ran beside the sidewalk.
“You’re welcome,” Joshie said with a grin.
“I was fine without you,” the blue Draik said angrily. The three older brothers exchanged looks.
“Yeah, we noticed that,” Landon said. “Nice punch by the way.” The royal Draik tried to smile brightly at his little brother but Baery just turned away.
“I hate being small,” he muttered, storming off. His three brothers watched with frowns as he walked home alone.
The three brothers reached home to find their owner in the front yard, hands on her hips with a stern expression. She had donned her Moehawk T-shirt and some ripped jeans. With her long brown hair in pigtails and a clover behind an ear, the only feature of stern parenting was her face.
“Ah, come on! Don’t blame it on us!” Joshie groaned.
“Blame what? The fact that Landon tried to eat his teacher or that you two vandalized the art room?” she demanded.
“Oh – yeah that,” Joshie said sheepishly.
“What do you mean ‘yeah that’ what-“ her glare deepened. “What else did you do?”
“We didn’t do anything, Mom, Baery is just a little funny today is all,” Landon soothed, stepping forward. The firm parenting act melted off of her face and she immediately became a simpering teenager with very worried eyes.
“What’s the matter with my Baery-Boo?” she asked. “What did you three do?!”
“We didn’t do anything,” Jake said with exasperation. “He’s just a little moody’s all.” The girl frowned.
“Dinner’s on the table – I’ll go talk to Baery,” she said. The three Draiks nodded and entered the neohome while their owner walked into the backyard. Once there, she walked over to the tallest tree and called up. “Drop the ladder down, Baery.” There was silence and then a moment later a wooden ladder dropped down and Clover climbed up into the tree house.
Baery was sitting in the corner, gazing out at the darkening day. Clover sat lightly down beside him.
“How was school, sweetie?” she asked nervously.
“Are you sure? Your brothers said you were a little moody.”
“Then I guess that’s how school was,” Baery replied.
“Don’t be like this, Baery-Boo, what’s wrong?” Clover said, wrapping an arm around him but he pulled away instantly.
“That’s wrong, Mom! I don’t want to be Baery-Boo! I want to be Big Baery or Biting Baery. I hate needing my three big brothers to protect me!”
“Well, you could start Training School and-“
“Training School won’t do anything!” Baery cut his owner off. “I will always be half the size of Joshie, half the strength of Landon, and half as smart as Jake. I will always be... Baery-Boo,” he finished bitterly.
“Three halves make a whole and a half,” Clover said with a weak smile. Baery glowered at her and her smile was replaced with a firm look. Clover rolled onto her knees and took Baery’s paw. “And you have a whole big heart,” she whispered, placing his paw on his heart. “And not even your brothers combined can half that.” Baery stared wide-eyed up at her and smiled.
“So if most of me is a big heart what is the rest of me?” he asked. Smiling, she shoved him.
That night after having force-fed themselves Clover’s cooking, the four Draik brothers climbed into their separate beds in their bedroom. Landon into his Zen, Jake into his Tiger, Joshie into his Rainbow, and Baery into his Niptor.
Clover tucked them all in, lovingly brushing back the two hairs on their heads. She pecked them all lightly on the foreheads before pulling the blankets up to their chins. Baery gazed up at her when she finished with him, the last in line.
“Let me guess, you want a story,” Clover said with a smile. Her four Draiks chimed ‘yes’ in response. “Very well,” she said with a sigh. “I heard a very good one in Meridell today.” And then, she began to walk slowly around the room, among the beds.
“Once upon a time, there was a young blue Lupe named Jeran, who saved Meridell from the horrible Kass. Of course, you’ve heard of Jeran in your History classes – but that is not who this story is about. It is one of his followers that we will talk about. His name was Draco, and he was a blue Draik that was extremely loyal to Jeran.
Draco was a powerful Draik, and skilled in the art of war. He was a firm young pet that did not take kindly to tyranny or the like. Anyways, the day that Jeran led his army into the aerial battle that won the war with Kass, Draco did something very noble. The day would have been done very early, for towards the beginning a very powerful fireball was thrown at Jeran which would have surely been his downfall, but our loyal Draco leaped in front of the flame and he himself was taken down.
There was a flash when the fireball enveloped Draco’s body and Jeran, thinking quickly, pulled a broken Pteri eggshell from his bag. Quickly Jeran closed the egg around the slowly rising light and closed in the spirit of Draco. The egg sealed itself shut and turned a lovely blue. Pocketing the spirit of Draco, Jeran went on to win the day. (Even if he did fall off of the Citadel.)
When Jeran reached home, he set the egg carefully on a pillow beside his bed. When he woke the next morning – it was gone. To this day, no one has been able to find the spirit of Draco Draik although many have tried. Many believe that his egg disappeared and his spirit with it. Others think that he is still out there somewhere, ready to give his power and intelligence to those that set his spirit free. Others think that he just became a regular Draik egg and will one day hatch again and bring the world his light.
Personally, I think it is a faerie tale.”
Clover yawned and kissed all of her pets good night once more.
“Good night, dears,” she whispered, leaving the room.
“Good night,” the Draiks called softly after her. They all reached up and turned off the lamps beside their beds. Minutes later they were all asleep – except for Baery.
Baery stared up at the ceiling in the darkness, thinking about the story that their owner had just told to them. For hours he contemplated on it. When he finally rolled over, he had made a decision.
He would find Draco’s Egg.
To be continued...