Confessions of King Skarl's Hair Stylist
I’ve been told that many people would – What? I can’t say that word? Fine.
I’ve been told that many people would MURDER to have my job. I say – YOU CAN HAVE IT!
My name is Marcel Picklesby. Like anyone else, I was foolish enough to think that working for royalty would land me in the spotlight and get me featured on the Neopian Times for my dazzling artwork and suave sense of style. Instead, I’m featured on the Neopian Times for completely different reasons. I’m here to clear up the confusion behind my departure from Meridell Castle and I want all of Neopia to know the truth.
I came on board shortly after all the drama with Kass concluded. The hair stylist before me disappeared after a fatal encounter with Kiss the Mortog. Poor thing! I do believe the Mortog’s are responsible for more fatalities than Darigan and Snow Roller combined. It’s gotten so bad in fact that a new swamp is forming right on the borders of Meridell! What is that majestic green pond you ask? Why, it’s none other than a myriad of a Mortog guts and Avvie Collector tears!
But I digress.
Dear friends, the real reason I’m speaking to you today is for the sole purpose that you do not fall victim to the senseless mind control that Skarl is not only inflicting upon the inhabitants of Meridell, but on the whole of Neopia itself.
And Dr. Sloth, if you’re reading this – I know what you’re thinking, but honey, you aint got nothin’ on King Skarl. So just sit down on your scrap-metal throne and let me talk.
It started with the mood swings. When I’m in the middle of curling his hair and doing his makeup – and no, that blush isn’t natural – he’ll launch himself into a tirade complaining that his toe nail polish is too dark. I say No, that it’s to cover up the fungus and he says, No, the fungus wouldn’t be there if I would wash his feet more often! Apparently my tears aren’t enough to adequately improve the hygiene of his chubby toes.
BUT THAT’S NOT ALL! When I’m done curling his hair, he turns around to look at me, grunts, and says, “I hate it.” And I say, Well, we can turn it into a Skarl bun if you want. And he says, No, Skarl buns only work if combined with extraordinary amounts of facial hair. I say, it’s not my fault that he hasn’t any, and then he launches into another tirade of how voluptuous Hagan’s beard is. The poor wretch.
So we’re all ready for the morning. Skarl puts on his Winter Kougra fur-lined cloak (which is technically illegal in Terror Mountain) and marches off to sit idly on his throne for the rest of the day. Numerous Neopians enter the Castle, many of them telling jokes about Fierce Peophins (I don’t even know why) and many others pushing the boundaries of insolence for the purpose of getting thrown out of the castle. I admire some of them. One jovial idiot spit biscuit crumbs in Skarl’s face and bragged about how his mother could grow more facial hair than Skarl could.
So this goes on until lunch time. By this time, Skarl has either laughed a good while or cursed a good while. The only motivator for him to get off his throne is the sweet smelling aroma of the neighboring kingdom’s banquet gradually filling the halls of the Castle. I was perplexed as to how such a smell could travel so far. The smell of Altadorian Kau’s is one thing, but this scent was so powerful it would force Turmy into a food-induced coma and render useless half the kingdom.
I later discovered from a honey merchant that the smell was the result of Hagan hiring a legion of Buzz’s to blow a series of eastward winds infused with one of Jhudora’s tantalizing anesthetic food spells. Others have said that it was the Air Faerie’s doing after Skarl tried to use her hair to floss his teeth. THAT was an accomplishment, but a loss altogether. An accomplishment because it was Skarl’s first attempt at hygiene, but a loss because the kingdom experienced infrequent storms resulting from the Air Faerie’s indignation.
Believe whatever you may, but my money’s on Jhudora because of this Illusen drama. Here’s the thing, I’ve known for years that this whole tree-huggin’ act with Illusen has been a disguise to cover up her reckless spending habits. That’s right Neopia, you’re gonna get all the JUICY details today. While the Faerie kingdom is broke and defenseless, Illusen’s making the situation worse by dropping bags of money on people’s feet. You think I enjoy a broken toe lady? That’s another reason I left the kingdom. Skarl’s temper tantrums were bad enough, but Illusen’s tree-huggin' agenda pushed me over the edge.
I would have stayed for Turmy though. Everyone loves Turmy.
So let’s talk about education in Meridell. Because Hagan has such a huge propensity to encourage reading among his citizens in Brightvale, King Skarl has decided to do the opposite. Books were abolished when he became King, which has led to a sharp decline in the IQ level of Meridell’s citizens. Do we compensate for it by having stellar athletic ability, you ask? NO! In fact, we didn’t even place in the Top 5 of last year’s Altador Cup standings. Even the Grundos on Kreludor beat us and their population is less than FIVE.
The only thing ‘stellar’ we do is a competition to see who can face plant the hardest while chasing a cheese wheel down a hill.
I know I said earlier that I wanted the spotlight for being closely connected to royalty, but I also had other motivations for becoming King Skarl’s Hair Stylist. It was not because I had some competing insecurities with Clarence Chichester Coggeshale (though I do admit his hair is gorgeous) but more along the lines of becoming a huge inspiration to the kingdom of Meridell. I had visions of walking down the street and seeing proud Neopians flaunting their voluminous locks of hair (albeit most of those are wigs) and confidently saluting each other with an air of charismatic individuality.
But no, it’s gotten so bad, in fact, that I found myself walking past a toy shop the other day and happened upon an unfortunate object in the window labeled ‘King Skarl Action Figure’. I hung my head in disgust as I eyed the pudgy gut and deprecating snarl this monstrous toy possessed. Is this what it has come to Meridell? Toting bad jokes and belly flab instead of becoming a model nation for all of Neopia to follow?
My fake Neopian eyelashes are just fluttering with sadness. My dream to see young Neopian’s admire their King’s sense of dignity and Faerie-level vanity came to an abrupt end.
Do you want to know how it ended? I’ll tell you.
One day as I was styling Skarl’s hair, something happened. It’s hard to say whether I got tired of Skarl dissing my love for bow ties or whether he started blaming me for the new species of mold that appeared on his feet, even so – I had a moment of awakening. After a few minutes of enduring another one of his tirades, I decided I had enough. I stood up, threw my sparkly pink comb to the floor, and told Skarl I REFUSED to be treated like another one of his moldy biscuits and be subject to washing his repulsive feet. And you know what? He punched my tooth out.
Later that night, I laid there in bed with an icepack strapped to my jaw and contemplated the meaning of my existence. All of a sudden, a light appeared, and before me stood the Tooth Faerie! She expressed surprise at seeing so miserable a creature and asked what was wrong. I told her my story and saw a warm smile slowly wash over her face. I asked her what she was thinking, and right there on the spot, she gave me a job offer I couldn’t refuse. So that night my life changed. In an instant, I was rescued from the crucible that I deemed would be my life forever. Not so. Now I enjoy company among Faerie’s who appreciate my level of vanity and even encourage it.
So friends, I leave you with just one thought. No matter who you are and what you do, if you’re not happy where you’re at, then make a change and start moving towards where your dreams lie. Live them no matter who disproves of it! This is Marcel Picklesby. Over and out.