Searching for the Forgotten Shore
The day my owner unlocked the Forgotten Shore was the start of an endless adventure. She smiled at me as she placed the pieces of map that she had searched for into the treasure game. I stood there in anticipation of some sort of signal that we had unlocked something. As my owner placed the last piece in, I stood up straighter and waited for the blinding light or the roaring wind that would occur when the place was unlocked.
My shoulders slumped with disappointment and I plopped down on the floor, arms and legs crossed. "What a waste of money," I complained to my owner. She just looked at me and smiled sympathetically.
"Don't give up just yet, Bonni," she said as she patted my floppy ears. "We haven't even gone there yet."
Suddenly a loud from a speaker in the corner squealed, "CONGRATULATIONS! You have all nine pieces of the Forgotten Shore map! Press the button in front of you to discover the route!" I jumped when the voice spoke and it took a few seconds for what it said to take root in my mind.
I jumped up from my position and danced on the spot from excitement. My owner smiled down at me and laughed quietly. I grinned happily for a few moments until I realised I couldn't see any buttons.
"How are we meant to press a button when there isn't one?!" I looked around the room, but to no avail, there was no button. My owner shook her head and pointed to the treasure redeemer thingy. A large red button had appeared.
I don't get embarrassed often, but this time I went red as a Loveberry.
My owner smiled and asked me to push it, so I did. A guide popped out from somewhere and I ran over and picked it up. Flipping through the pages, I found out the location. "Where do we need to go?" my owner asked.
I grinned and said firmly, "Krawk Island."
* * *
When we reached Krawk Island, it was flowing with visitors. Since it had disappeared and recently been returned by thousands of helpers, the island was a great spectacle among Neopians. I led my owner through the crowds until we reached a corner that wasn't packed with people.
I opened the guide and found where I had left off. I read out, "Once you have safely reached Krawk Island, find the Smugglers Cove."
My owner looked at the nearest shop sign; we were in the Warf Wharf and were outside a place labelled 'Krawk Cup'. I didn't know what that was, but I didn't think it was relevant.
"If we go to the academy, I think I can find where the cove is," my owner told me and I nodded in agreement. If we found the cove, we could go to the next place in the guide, which would hopefully be the shore.
We set off towards the academy, but it was a long walk from the Wharf and my legs got tired. I asked if we could stop for a bit and my owner decided we would have a little break. I sat down on a large rock and ate my chiapop that I had packed before leaving home today. We lived all the way in Shenkuu and it was a far way away from where we were now.
After the break, we started walking again and soon found the academy. When we reached it, I looked at my owner expectantly. She wasn't looking at me, but to the left from where we stood. "Which way do we go now?" I asked.
"This way." My owner began walking the way which she had been looking at and I had to run to catch up to her. A sudden thought occurred to me.
"How do you even know which way to go? For all I know we could be going towards that giant ship that was made into a restaurant!" My owner suddenly stopped walking and turned towards me.
"Do you trust me?" she asked, eyes locked to mine. I nodded quickly. She nodded back. "Then don't ever leave my side when we get to the smugglers. You're a rare little kid and they might just try something to get you."
I had no idea why they'd want a Cybunny but didn't dare contradict my owner. When she kept walking, I followed and ran to her side.
* * *
When we reached the smugglers cove, it was near dark. There was no way we could get back to the Wharf without the sky turning pitch black. We only had one option – Stay here for the night and continue searching tomorrow. We found a patch of ground that was well sheltered but didn't have hard dirt.
The next morning, I woke up before my owner and noticed two things. One was that it had rained during the night and the ground was softer than it had been yesterday.
Two was that our belongings had been ransacked.
My bag and my owner's bag had literally been torn apart. All the food and drink we had was gone and so was the bag of neopoints we had had. I realised I didn't know where the guide had gone and I silently panicked until I realised that I was sitting on it.
"Silly of you, Bonni, don't panic until you know all of the facts," I muttered under my breath. I opened the guide and stared at the inside. All the pages had been torn out and a large smiley face stared at me from the back inside cover. The smugglers had gotten the guide.
"Oh no," I whispered. "No, this cannot be happening!" I jumped to my feet and shook my owner awake.
"Wake up!" I hissed. She stirred, then opened her eyes and looked up at me, blinking in the sunlight. I held up the guide and let it flap down; showing my owner that there was nothing inside. I noticed a tiny 'ha ha' was scrawled down the spine.
Fuming, I threw the useless thing in the dirt and threw up my hands. "What are we going to do now?" I asked. My owner sighed and sat up.
"There's only one thing to do, Bonni. And that's get those papers back."
* * *
We made our way to the Smugglers Cove and stood outside until we were noticed. "Hello?" my owner said to the nearest pirate. He simply looked at her and had a strange look come over his face. He whispered something to the nearest pirate and they both laughed. I soon noticed that a lot of them kept looking at me; I remembered what my owner had said before, "They might just try something to get you." I stood closer to my owner and tried not to look scared, but that was hard since I was terrified out of my wits.
While we stood there, I noticed what the Pirates were doing – packing everything into boxes marked ITEMS SOLD. I saw a box which had something vaguely familiar. It was my Faerie Cybunny Plushie, which I always carried around with me.
"Hey, that's mine –" My owner made a cutting hand motion and I stopped talking. She looked down at me and gave me a meaningful look. It said: Be quiet and we'll get our things back. I didn't think that was true, but I stayed quiet nonetheless. It wouldn't do to have the Smugglers after you if you were on Krawk Island and I'd heard stories about them. Thinking about them and seeing the pirates here made me shudder.
"Excuse me," my owner said, clearing her throat, "but I would like to talk to the, uh, Manager."
Only a few of the pirates looked at us. Another left his station and went to another part of the cove that we couldn't see. One pirate approached us.
"Manners ain't gonna do ya any good 'ere missus." His voice was gruff and to the point.
My owner considered this and said, "Alright. I want to talk your boss, and I want to talk to him now. You seem like the kind of guy who could get that done for me." She smiled sweetly at him. "So how's about you go do that then, huh?"
The pirate laughed and said, "Now see, that's better, innit? M'kay, how abouts I get Fish-eye over here to get the boss." He pointed at a large Bruce who was standing up against some of the larger boxes. My owner nodded.
"That'd be acceptable." She was great at getting what she wanted. That's why my room is always clean.
The Bruce left and while we waited for the leader to come, we noticed another pirate flipping through some papers, our papers. But something was wrong; he was snarling at them in disgust and was muttering about a foreign language.
"I hear you've been giving my boys an earful." A snide voice came from where the Bruce had left. It was a large Eyrie that looked a bit like the Academy trainer, except this one was much more fearsome. My owner nodded at the Eyrie, who laughed and said, "And what do we have the pleasure of entertainin' such wonderful guests?" He laughed again and took a bit of something from his pocket.
My owner looked the pirate in the eye. "You stole things that belong to me." The pirate seemed to think about this and nodded. Then he walked slowly over to a chair and sat down, arranged his jackets and looked at us.
"And what things would they be, I ask?"
I had a feeling that he was going to feign innocence. I stood and waited for my owner's answer.
"Some unimportant food items and a few neopoints, but also something that is of value to me and I want it back." The Eyrie looked at us like a little Petpet would look at its owner.
"Oh? And what thing of value would this be?"
My owner walked over to where the pirate had been fiddling with the papers and pointed to them. "These papers here, which, obviously are of no use to you."
The leader looked interested. "Bring them here," he said to the pirate who had been trying to read them. When he had them in his hands, his eyebrows drew down and he looked at us angrily.
"Some foreign language? You want these papers that you can't even understand?"
I looked down at them. I could read the words there just fine. I looked at my owner and realised that she could too.
"I understand them perfectly; to me it's just plain old Neopian," I said. My owner nodded in agreement. A sudden thought occurred to me.
"Maybe, since they were made for us, then they only are readable by us," I told my owner.
She nodded. "That does make sense." She looked at the Eyrie. "Since you don't need them, we'll just take them and be on our way." She made and move to grab them but the Eyrie moved from her reach.
"No, no, no. I don't think so; you see there is a little rule that applies here." He grinned at us.
"What rule would that be?" I asked.
He looked at me triumphantly. "FINDERS KEEPERS!"
My mouth dropped open in outrage. "What! But we didn't even lose them!"
The Eyrie smirked at me and then said happily, "My crew was here telling me that they found the papers left unawares. I think you lost them."
"I was sleeping on them! How is that leaving them unaware?" I was getting grumpy and rightfully so. He didn't need those papers; he couldn't even read them!
"Oh, well, by all means take them back. You obviously want them back so badly. I had better not keep you from them."
He handed them to me. Dazed, I looked at him and took them from his hands. "Er, thanks, I guess." I looked at my owner, who shrugged, "Well, I guess we'll be on our way then."
The pirates waved us goodbye and we started to leave the cave. Then I noticed something.
"Hey, one of the papers is missing! It goes from page 6 to page 9!" I turned and glared at the Eyrie. He shrugged.
"Looks like it blew away in the breeze. Poor you."
I frowned and walked outside, ruffling the papers as I left. I began to say something to my owner when I noticed she wasn't there. I turned around but I couldn't see her. Suddenly a loud shout rang out from the cave and I spun and stared at it. Then I saw my owner leaving with a paper in her hand. It was the missing page! I waited until she caught up to me and she handed me the page. I grinned at her and looked to read the next step, but my owner stopped me.
"There's no need," she said. "I know where to go."
* * *
We walked along the beach for almost three hours, and then suddenly, a giant ship wreck came into view. I smiled at my owner.
This was the right place. I could feel it. I ran along the sand until I could see the whole shore in front of me. I looked down at my feet and noticed something glittering in the sun. It was some rare treasure.
I grinned at my owner. We had finally made it. After all the troubles and pirates and everything, we had finally gotten our reward.
We had found the Forgotten Shore.