Jacob glared at his sister, a disco Bori named Indi. She was standing in the doorway of his room, grinning in her usual insanely happy way.
"No! No no no no no! A thousand times no!" He wasn't ready to go along with another of his sister's crazy schemes, not after what happened on Krawk Island. Peanut butter and fake gold didn't go well together, especially when Indi was the one using them.
"But Jacob," Indi whined, "It'll be fun!"
"I said no, Indi! Do you know how much stuff Sil has in her Inventory? Petpets, junk items, food, it's almost worse than her Safety Deposit Box!" the silver Gelert snapped, "And besides, how do you even know if we could get into it, it's a bag!"
Sil was Indi and Jacob's owner. She was a messy girl, often forgetting to empty out her Inventory, and so things just piled up in it until she got so sick of digging through things, she just dumped it into the Safety Deposit Box.
Indi pouted. "You're no fun, I'll just go by myself."
Jacob had been preparing to shut the door in Indi's face, but as she said that, his ears stood straight up in horror. "You'd never come back!" As annoying as he thought Indi was, he still didn't want anything to happen to her. The disco Bori just turned and flounced away, her pink scarf flopping against her neck.
Jacob knew where she was heading: the office, where Sil was likely working on something she called magic. It mostly included reading books and muttering strange sounding words under her breath and making the table explode. Her mentor was a Light Faerie named Estel, and, though she said Sil had a natural talent for magic, she also said Sil needed a lot of work.
"Indi!" Jacob hissed, grabbing his sister's arm as she tried to open the door. "Sil is gonna kill you if she finds out!"
The Bori shot him a look, "No, she'll kill you if she does, because you're apparently not coming."
Jacob ground his teeth. His sister was insanely cheerful, stubborn, adventurous, and nosy. She also liked pulling pranks, mostly on unsuspecting strangers, and Jacob was always the one to apologize and clean up after her.
Indi pulled away from him, pushing the door open and sticking her head in. A sudden explosion rocked the house, and the Bori jerked her head back, shutting the door quickly.
"Not again!" Sil's voice groaned from the office. Indi snickered. As soon as the sound of Sil cleaning up came through the door, Indi slipped inside, leaving the door ajar. Jacob watched, rooted to the ground, as his sister crept over to the bag lying on the ground beside the remains of Sil's work table. It wasn't huge, probably the size of a tote bag, and he wasn't sure how a full grown Bori would fit in it.
Indi turned, saw her brother, and then grinned, before diving headfirst into the bag. As the tip of her tail disappeared, Jacob burst into the room.
"Oh, hi Jacob." Sil said absentmindedly, waving her left hand and reciting something.
"Um, hi... Sil," the Gelert said nervously, "Er, have you seen Indi?"
"No, why?" Sil stopped her chanting and flicked one hand at the ruins of the table. There was a puff of smoke, the smell of strawberries, and then the table was whole again, sitting against the wall as if nothing had ever happened to it.
"She, uh, she jumped into your inventory bag," Jacob muttered. He didn't like tattling on his sister, but he didn't want her to get hurt either.
"You're joking," Sil said uncertainly as she turned around and looked her pet in the face. "No. You're not joking."
"No, I'm not."
Sil groaned, putting her face in her hands. "Oh no..."
It was a strange sensation to jump into an inventory bag, Indi decided. It felt like mix between falling and floating, and she couldn't really describe it any better. Everything around her was grey, as she were surrounded by a huge, grey cloud, but it didn't feel like that. The air was actually surprisingly warm.
For a while, she floated - or fell - and she began to wonder if she would ever reach the bottom. Almost as soon as she thought that, the air around her shifted into a warm cushion beneath her, and then she saw the ground. It was white, very white, and little boxes floated around it in a cluster.
I wonder what those are, she thought, stepping off of the air cushion as it landed on the ground, and the feel of it beneath her feet was cold and hard. As she walked closer to the floating boxes, she saw that they each contained an item. The one closest to her held a Bitten Green Apple, and one a little farther away had a Yellow Worm. There were tons of boxes, fifty or so, Indi guessed, because Sil hadn't cleaned the inventory out recently.
Reaching out a claw, Indi touched the box holding the apple. It dissolved at her touch, and the apple fell to the ground. It jiggled for a second and then melted into a puddle on the ground.
Indi took a step back. "What in Neopia?"
The puddle let out a faint plop sound, and then slowly began to materialize into an apple again. The disco Bori took another step back, accidentally bumping into another box. She turned around and watched in horror as the box disintegrated, releasing the angry looking Drackonack inside. It landed on the ground with a thud, and then turned to look at her with gleaming red eyes.
With a faint squeak, Indi took three steps backwards. The Drackonack advanced, snorting. Indi turned around and fled, not noticing the apple as it dissolved into a puff of green smoke and floated away.
"What are you doing?" Jacob asked, watching as his owner rummaged through a box that had been underneath her desk. It was full of strange items, like gloves and backpacks, and once, a rock.
"Getting supplies," Sil replied, tucking a long wrench into her backpack.
Jacob flopped his ears. "Oh." He stood up from where he was sitting on Sil's desk chair. "We are going to get Indi out, right?"
"Of course!" the girl said in surprise. "She's somewhere she's not supposed to be, and the magic is reacting to her, look." She pointed at the inventory bag, which was sitting on the ground beside her. Jacob watched it for a moment, and then jumped back as it jerked violently and fell over.
"Will Indi be okay?"
"She should, unless she does something stupid." Sil grabbed a flashlight and a water bottle. Standing up, she shoved the box under her desk again. She stepped over the inventory bag and grabbed a staff from the corner.
Looking around, she muttered, "Let's see, what else? Hmm, water bottle, flashlight, wrench, staff, rope, paper, backpack..." she counted off her things one by one. "Nope, nothing else. I think we're good to go." She stepped towards her inventory bag, which hopped and skittered a few inches. Jacob approached from the other side, and it fell over. Sil muttered something, and poked the bag. A poof of smoke surrounded it, and a waft of strawberries drifted through the room. When Jacob looked again, the bag was perfectly still.
"What did you do to it?" he asked warily.
"Paralysis spell," Sil said, grabbing the handles and pulling the bag open. A swirl of green smoke escaped from it and then turned into a green apple, falling onto Jacob's head.
The Gelert yelped in surprise. "Was that supposed to happen?"
"I don't think so."
"Okay... We should just go," Jacob said, shaking his head, he picked up the apple, setting it on the Sil's desk. Sil nodded, tightening the straps of her backpack and checking that the zippers were shut.
"Alright, I'll go first. Hold onto my staff, though. I don't want to get separated." she put one foot into the bag, then the other, and for a second, she floated there. Then she fell. Jacob grabbed her staff as it disappeared, and felt himself pulled into the inventory.
Indi had run in to a few more boxes as she fled from the Drackonack. One had held a 2/3 Carrot and Pea Omelette, another some Pirate Crisps. The one she had most recently run into had held a Cobrall Dagger, which she had managed to grab. Dodging around another box, Indi looked around for a place to hide, but to her dismay, she realized the ground was entirely flat.
Behind her, she heard the Drackonack snorting and stamping as it charged after her. Chancing a glance over her shoulder, she saw it had caught up immensely. Stifling her fear, she faced forward again.
Up ahead, she saw a box filled with what looked like cobwebs.
Is it an Old Cobwebs Foreground? she thought, heading towards it. As she grew closer, she that it was, indeed, and Old Cobwebs Foreground, and an idea began to form in her mind. Slowing her pace a bit, Indi looked over her shoulder again. The Drackonack, seeing her slow, sped up.
When Indi was underneath the Old Cobwebs Foreground, she stopped and turned, so she was facing the Drackonack. When it was only a foot in front of her, she reached up and touched the box. Jumping back, she watched as the box disappeared, dropping cobwebs on top of the Petpet.
The Drackonack stumbled, and the webs twisted around its body, legs and tail. Indi cheered, doing a short victory dance as she watched the Petpet stumble about. At the sound of her voice, it turned its head sharply to look at her.
A snort escaped from its nostrils, and it strained towards her, glaring. Indi impudently stuck her tongue out at it. The Drackonack growled, thrusting its head forward as far as it could, breathing heavily. Indi took a step back, even with it trapped in cobwebs, she still didn't want to be close to it. A shadow rippled over the ground, and she looked up.
Sil and Jacob floated overhead, and then landed somewhere behind her.
Jacob fought the urge to scream as he and Sil fell. His ears were flapping wildly above him, and the whistling of the air rushing by him in large gusts made his head hurt, and he almost forgot to hold on to the staff. The wind almost tore him off, and he renewed his grip on the polished wood.
Sil shouted something above the raging noise, which Jacob didn't catch, jerking her staff and pulling the Gelert closer towards her. Even through the windstorm around them, there was a familiar smell of strawberries. The air calmed, and their fall was slowed a great deal. Soon, it was almost as if they were floating instead of falling.
"Look!" Sil cried suddenly flinging her arm out and pointing at something.
Jacob followed her pointing finger. Below them, everything was white, broken only by a small, faint, purpley blob and a larger pink and green one. "Indi!" he gasped.
"Yes," Sil agreed, and she waved her staff. A gust of air pushed hard them from behind, and their fall sped up. A second later, the colored blobs were growing rapidly larger, and Jacob could also make strangely shaped white-ish ones surrounding them.
"What are those?" he motioned at the cluster of white shapes. Now he could tell they were boxes.
Sil looked down at them for a moment, "I believe they are items," she finally replied.
Jacob frowned. Items? He wanted to ask Sil more, but he didn't, because now they were almost on the ground, directly above Indi. She was standing in front of a Drackonack covered in cobwebs. They drifted over Indi's head, then landed behind her. Sil stumbled as Jacob fell flat on his face and dragged the end of the staff.
Indi turned around, then burst into a grin. "What took you so long?" she asked, walking over to them.
"It's hardly been twenty minutes," he said.
"Only?" Indi frowned, twirling her scarf. "It seems like it's been two or three hours."
Sil was about to say something, but instead, she focused her eyes intently on something over the Bori's shoulder. The hand not holding her staff twitched, but other than that, she was still.
Jacob looked where his owner was looking, but only saw the huge, red, gaping mouth of a Drackonack. He let out a gasp, then leaped forward at his sister, shouting, "Indi, look out!"
Indi whirled around, and then screamed. Somehow, the Drackonack had escaped from its web trap, and now it was lunging at her, jaws wide open. The huge white teeth lining the Drackonack's gums looked almost as long as one of her claws, she thought as she stared into the huge mouth. Suddenly, something hit her from the back, and the pressure against her knees made her fall down. The mouth snapped closed where her head had been a second ago. She let out a relieved half-gasp, half-sob, and she looked down.
Her hands were shaking violently, and her black claws clicked together. A silver ear caught her attention, and she turned to look over her shoulder, briefly catching a glimpse of her brother sprawled on the ground before a growl sounded right in her ear.
Whipping her head around, she found herself face to face with the angry Drackonack, only this time, its jaws was shut. It growled again, and then opened its mouth wide. Indi scrambled to her feet, almost tripping over Jacob.
Sil bellowed something that sounded suspiciously like, "APPLE!" and then waved her hands and banged the staff on the ground. Smoke swirled from it, and a strawberry scented breeze fluttered by.
There was a plop, and then suddenly, a shiny green apple with a bite out of it was hurtling through the air at a high speed. It cannoned right into the Drackonack's mouth. The Petpet immediately snapped its jaws shut, and then made a gurgling sound, then a noise that was similar to coughing.
"Indi?" Jacob asked from behind her. "Are you okay?"
The disco Bori turned around and smiled happily at her brother. "Yup, I'm fine. How're you?"
Jacob shrugged slightly, then took a step towards her and winced. "I think my knees are gonna be bruised for a while."
"Heh," Indi snickered.
"Ahem." Sil cleared her throat, and both Neopets looked at their owner. "I think we should go home now."
Jacob nodded fervently. "Yes, please."
"If we have to." Indi sighed.
The girl smiled slightly. "First, though, let me do something." Squinting at the Drackonack, she poked it with her staff and then whispered something. It opened its mouth and coughed up a green apple, looking very queasy. A second later, smoke exploded into the air, only to be blown away by a huge gust of strawberry -scented wind.
When Indi looked at it, the Drackonack was once again imprisoned in a box, like it had been when she first found it. The apple was still on the ground, in a puddle of saliva. She poked it with one claw, then asked, "What are we going to do with it? I certainly don't want to eat it."
"I'll dispose of it," Sil said, waving a hand, and watching as the apple disappeared in a puff of smoke and strawberry.
"Can we go home now?" Jacob asked.
Sil laughed, "Of course." She held out her staff, and then the three were picked up in a swirl of smoke. As they were dumped onto the floor of Sil's office, a scent of strawberries tickled Indi's nose.
Jacob sat on his bed, reading a book. It had been about a week and a half since their adventure in Sil's inventory, and Indi had been calmer than normal. Jacob relished the relative peace, but he dreaded when Indi would decide on a new adventure.
A sudden knock on the door made him jump. "Come in!" he called, placing a bookmark in his spot and setting the book beside him on the bed.
Indi flounced into the room, sporting her characteristic grin and pink scarf. "Hi, Jacob," she said.
"Hi," Jacob replied warily, wondering what she wanted.
The Bori sat down on the bed beside him, slowly tracing the snowflake pattern on the bedspread with one claw. "I have a question."
Those words immediately triggered suspicion and dread within Jacob's mind, but he said, instead, "Go ahead."
Indi flashed her smile at him. "Do you want to go skydiving off of the Darigan Citadel?"
"What? No! SIL!" As Jacob bellowed for his owner, he wondered why on earth his sister even bothered inviting him on her silly adventures.