Neopia, Year 200: The Beginning - Part Two
Chapter Two: Journey to Faerieland
The next morning, the four siblings left their home on Magical Road. It was a gloomy day and dark grey clouds hung over Yorick, Kayna, Layla and Cillo’s heads as they traveled along the wet and muddy paths to their destination. Each was carrying a small pack containing food and other necessary items.
“Where’s this place again?” Cillo looked about at the surrounding shops, most of which hadn’t even opened yet— at least, those that were still in business.
“It’s this place called Uni Travel Tours,” Kayna replied. “Back when the Owners were still around— you wouldn’t remember, Cil, you were too young— there were a lot of travel agencies sprouting up all over the place like daisies. After they left, a lot of the agencies closed down. This one has the lowest prices. Oh, look! There it is.”
As they entered the small, faded pink building, the yellow Uni at the front desk looked up and, upon seeing what were probably customers, broke into a smile.
“Welcome to Uni Travel Tours, where we get you where you want to go!” she exclaimed. “I presume that you want to travel to another region?”
The four siblings nodded, at which the Uni grinned and pointed to a picture of Neopia on the wall. “Great! Just let me know where you want to go. You can use that map if you’d like.”
“We want to go to Faerieland,” piped up Layla. The Uni stared at her in shock.
“Right... now where do you really want to go?” she asked, nervously hoping that the Neopets in front of her weren’t crazy enough to really want to go to Faerieland.
“Faerieland,” said Kayna firmly. “I know it sounds crazy, but we want to go there. Besides,” she added, “if you don’t fulfill our request, we’ll be more than delighted to inform the Council’s representative from Neopia Central that you haven’t been exactly following your company policy.”
The Uni blinked, and then wrote down ‘Faerieland’ on the form in front of her. After a few minutes of staring at the four siblings, she turned towards a door behind her and yelled, “PEG!”
A snow-white Uni poked her head through the door, glanced at the siblings and then at the other Uni. “Yes?”
“Peg,” said the Uni at the desk, “these customers want to—” She clopped over to Peg and whispered in her ear, at which Peg’s eyes widened. After a few minutes of whispered discussion between the two, the blue Uni turned to Kayna and spoke.
“Well, Peg here will take you to Faerieland, free of charge,” she said nervously, “but on one condition. Please don’t tell anyone that Uni Travel Tours took you there. We don’t want to be perceived as catering to lunatics.”
Cillo shot daggers at the Uni, who quickly ducked beneath the desk. Peg sighed and began to trot out to the carriage dock, whose silver surface gleamed, slick with early morning rain.
“Come with me.”
Fyora glanced up from her position at a window, observing the day-to-day activities of her kingdom in exile, to see an Earth Faerie garbed in a white maid’s outfit enter her chambers.
“Hello, Janadoa,” said the Faerie Queen, who smiled as she settled down in a chair. “What news do you have for me?”
Janadoa curtsied, and then spoke in a respectful tone. “Your Highness, Brianne the Fire Faerie is here to speak with you about the incident yesterday afternoon.”
Fyora nodded, her smile quickly being replaced by a more serious expression. “Thank you, Janadoa. Send her in.”
The Earth Faerie maid curtsied again and left the chamber. Moments later, a clumsy-looking Fire Faerie stumbled inside.
“Oh, hello... Highness,” she hastily added before sinking into a deep curtsey. Unfortunately, her curtsey was so low that the Faerie lost her footing and dropped to the floor.
Fyora groaned inwardly and then gestured to a nearby chair. “Sit down, Brianne. I wish to discuss yesterday’s events with you.”
Brianne sat down in a plush, purple velvet chair across from the Faerie Queen and immediately launched into an apology. “Oh, Your Highness, I’m really sorry, I didn’t mean to, I really am—”
Fyora hushed her with a lift of her hand and smiled. “Calm down, Brianne. There’ll be plenty of time to apologize shortly. Before we begin, would you like something to drink?”
She gestured to a porcelain tea service which seemed to have appeared from thin air. “Tea, perhaps?”
Brianne looked nervous. “Are you sure, Your Highness? You know how I am about porcelain. Ever since that Faerie Festival which the Soup Faerie hosted, I can’t look at the stuff without trembling...” She shivered, which caused Fyora to sigh, mutter “No tea, then,” and replace the tea service with a glass of water instead.
The clumsy Fire Faerie accepted the water glass, mumbled quick thanks, and raised the glass to Fyora’s cup of tea.
“Cheers,” she said, smiling, and after the glass and cup touched Brianne moved her glass near her wings.
Fyora’s eyes widened. “Brianne! Don’t—” Unfortunately, it was too late.
The glass tipped ever so slightly, allowing a drop of water to land on Brianne’s right wing. Both of the Faerie’s wings promptly burst into flames.
“Sorry, Your Highness,” said Brianne, wincing as she jumped out of her chair to avoid the flames turning said piece of furniture into a pile of ash. “I forgot about my wings.”
Fyora smiled consolingly. “Don’t fret, Brianne. I’ll just get the Uber-Fire Faerie to fireproof it. Your Great-Aunt Nuria had the same predicament, I believe.”
Brianne nodded, at which Fyora finally got on to the matter at hand.
“You see, Brianne,” she said seriously, “what you did yesterday was strictly against Faerie laws. You know that the Neopets hate us for what they perceive as Faerie-created weather patterns that were actually created by... well, we won’t get into that. Anyhow, I’m considering seriously reprimanding you for this incident.”
Brianne sighed. “Your Highness, I’m truly, truly sorry that this happened. I’ll make sure it never happens again! Just please don’t punish me.”
Fyora considered this for a moment, before Janadoa stepped back inside and curtsied. “Your Highness, four Neopets have landed on Faerieland. They seem unarmed, but could be dangerous.”
“Thank you, Janadoa,” replied Fyora with a slight smile. “You’re always the first to alert me of news.”
Janadoa curtsied, and then promptly left the chamber.
Layla stared in awe as the four siblings approached the pink gates of Faerie City, which sparkled in the mid-morning sun.
“It’s beautiful,” she murmured appreciatively as they neared the gates. Suddenly, and without warning, Kayna withdrew a Rainbow Gun from her pack.
“Kayna!” cried Layla, shocked. “What are you taking that out for?”
The brown Zafara looked at her baby sister. “I’m not taking any chances. Whatever we encounter inside could be dangerous, and I’m not going to be unprepared.”
“HALT!” called a loud voice from behind them. Four Fire Faeries carrying swords and shields suddenly appeared around them. Almost immediately, Yorick began to talk frantically.
“We mean you no harm!” he cried. “You see, my little sister Layla here wanted to know if Faeries were really dangerous, and Cillo- that’s my younger brother- suggested that we go to Faerieland, and—”
“A likely story,” snapped one of the Fire Faeries as she brandished her sword. “We’ll see how well it holds up when we take you to Fyora.”
The guards marched the four siblings through the gates and into Faerie City as several groups of Faeries glanced about to see what the commotion was.
A few minutes later, both Fyora and Brianne looked up to see a yellow Draik, brown Zafara, blue Techo and baby Aisha being marched into the room by four Faerie guards.
“Your Highness,” said the guards simultaneously, “we have apprehended these four criminals trying to break into Faerie City.”
“That’s not true!” cried Yorick, shocked at these accusations. “You see, my little sister—”
“What’s this about sisters?” Fyora asked politely. One of the Faeries came forward.
“These four have cooked up some story about the Aisha there wanting to find out if Faeries were really dangerous, so the Techo suggested that they go to Faerieland. A likely story, Your Highness,” the guard said, rolling her eyes.
Fyora nodded absentmindedly, her eyes taking in the four Neopets. Suddenly, something occurred to her, which caused her to adopt a curious facial expression.
The guard noticed this. “Is everything alright, Your Highness?” she asked nervously.
“Yes,” the Faerie Queen firmly replied after a short while. “You and your fellow guards are dismissed.”
The guard looked confused for a moment, but followed orders and promptly left, the other guards following suit. Once they had left, Fyora turned to the four siblings.
“You’d better come with me. Brianne, you can come as well.”
The siblings looked at each other and shrugged, then followed Fyora into a side chamber. Brianne looked puzzled as well, but followed closely behind the siblings.
To be continued...