Just a Dream
Petey the Slorg knew that the sight of him made most people feel sick. But that wasn't his fault, was it? It didn't seem fair that the only petpets that ever got homes were the cute, adorable ones from places like Faerieland or the Lost Desert. Each and every day, Petey would watch another lucky petpet being taken from the awful pet shop, and would wish more than anything that he could go with them.
You see, Petey wasn't what you could call "cute". He was short, chubby and covered in slime. Not a pretty sight. He spent his days oozing miserably inside his tank, watching the world go by. Or rather, watching people go by. They never even glanced in his cage any more.
So, as you can probably tell, Petey was not a happy chappie. The only escape from his terrible life inside the tank was when he was asleep. He always had the same dream. He always dreamed that he was in a nice Neohome, somewhere far away from the pet shop, and surrounded by people who loved him. Petey practically lived for those dreams. The only bad thing about them was when he woke up, and realized it was just a dream.
It was getting late, and the pet shop was closed for the night. Petey sighed and snuggled down on the newspaper sheet that made up his bed. Once again he had not been taken out from his tank. He had watched hundreds of other petpets leave the store. As usual. Petey allowed himself to relax and shut his eyes. He expected to see the Neohome and his dream family, but to his surprise they were not there. Petey blinked, and shook his head. He felt quite upset.
And then, quite suddenly, Petey saw something appear in the distance. His jaw dropped when he saw that it was another Slorg, only it was not like him at all... it was pink! Petey's eyes were as round as dinner plates as the other Slorg approached him. She grinned at Petey's surprised expression.
"Hello, Petey," she said. "My name is Leanne."
Petey didn't know how Leanne knew his name. He was too surprised by her sudden appearance. Leanne grinned.
"You're not alone, Petey," she said. "There are other Slorgs like you. You'll find a family someday, Petey. All Slorgs do."
And then Petey woke up, alone and afraid in the tank. It was a long time before the dream made any sense to him. He shut his eyes and went back to sleep, and was pleased to discover that his dream family had returned. They gave him lots of hugs and cuddles and gave him a big dinner, and even let him stay up to watch television. But Petey couldn't enjoy his dream like he normally did. His mind was too full of Leanne.
The next morning Petey was up bright and early. He still remembered his strange dream, and wondered what Leanne had meant. Up until now he'd thought he was the only Slorg in the whole of Neopia without a home, but now he wasn't too sure. Petey watched as the shop owner opened up the doors. Customers began streaming in. Petey was filled with excitement as Leanne's words came back to him. Today HAD to be the day.
All day long Petey waited and hoped. He tried to look cute. He tried to look appealing. He even tried doing tricks like rolling over and playing dead. But no one even glanced at him. By the end of the day, when the shopkeeper was closing up for the night, Petey was crushed. He had been so sure that the dream had meant something. But perhaps it had really just been a dream.
Petey sighed, and hunkered down on his newspaper bedding, feeling a strange sense of "deja vu". He held his breath as he fell asleep. And, for the first time, to his disappointment he was sitting outside the Neohome with the kind family. When they called to him, Petey slithered away as a slow rate. Tears came to Petey's eyes. He cried and cried and cried, and when he woke up he cried some more. His dream had been shattered. He knew that he would never return to the Neohome with the kind family.
Petey was still crying when the shop opened for the day. He was cold and lonely, and just wanted someone to love him. But, as usual, people rushed past, their stone hearts untouched by Petey's tears. To Petey, the world was bitter, cruel and unfair. All Petey wanted was to see Leanne again, and to ask her what she had meant. But maybe she had been just a dream.
Poor Petey sat and cried all day until he ran out of tears. He watched other petpets leaving, and sadness welled up inside him again. Petey slithered over to his newspaper bedding and curled up. He wasn't tired. He miserably stared out of his glass tank at the people. But then, something in the cage next to him caught his eye. He lifted his head, and stared. It was another Slorg, just like him! Petey was so surprised he almost fell over. How could that Slorg have been there all the time without him noticing? Petey noticed that it looked just as miserable as him.
Shyly, he tapped on the glass with his tail. The Slorg stared at Petey, obviously just as surprised to see that it had a neighbor. Petey waved with his tail. The other Slorg waved back. They waved and waved until they were too tired to wave any more, and fell asleep. That night Petey didn't dream of the Neohome, or Leanne. He dreamed of the Slorg in the next tank. In the morning Petey waved at his new neighbor some more.
Slowly the people began trickling past, and for once they actually stopped outside Petey's tank, laughing as they saw the two Slorgs waving at each other. One person reached into the next cage, but to Petey's surprise the Slorg on the other side didn't disappear. The person took out a cute Warf instead. Petey felt crushed and humiliated as he realized that he'd been waving at his own reflection. Tears came to his eyes, and he turned away from the people.
But then, he felt two hands enclose around his body. Petey was lifted up into the air and held in front of someone's face. He was surprised beyond belief.
"Hello," said the Person. Petey blinked. Next to the Person stood a Gelert. It was a pretty Faerie Gelert, and Petey felt embarrassed in its presence. To his enormous surprise, the Gelert reached out and stroked him. Before Petey could really grasp what was going on, he was being carried over to the shopkeeper. The Person gave the shopkeeper some Neopoints, and Petey was put into a petpet carry basket. The pretty Gelert pressed her face up against the bars of the basket.
"Hello, my special guy!" she trilled, tickling Petey under the chin. Petey grinned. Leanne had been right. Dreams really can come true.
If you're reading this, then I finally made the NT!