The Moderately Evil Faerie: Part Three
Spite rubbed her eyes as she slowly began to wake up. The rising sun was filtering through the windows near the basement’s ceiling in a way that lit up the entire room. As she began to sit up, she heard Malice muttering under her breath.
Malice was busy searching through a pile of clothes with a giant book underneath her arm. Spite began to open her mouth to question what was happening, but then realized that interrupting Malice might lead to a fight as opposed to an explanation.
Vanity was still fast asleep in a pile of plushies that had been thrown onto a couch over the years. Half of her body was covered in bright, fabric representations of various Neopians, and the other half was wrapped in her own wings. Spite realized that neither of her sisters was going to be ready to interact with her for a while, so she used her wings to push her up out of the bed and slowly flew up the stairs to the main living room. She followed the smell of cooking food to a small kitchen across from the stairwell.
“Morning,” Jhudora yawned from behind the stove. Her hair was a ratted mess and her makeup was completely absent. Instead of her usually vibrant green and purple dress, she was wearing an understated pair of blue pyjamas with cybunny house slippers.
Spite shooed a bartamus from a chair pulled up to the kitchen table and sat down. She couldn’t take her eyes off of Jhudora.
The Dark Faerie Sisters had grown up with The Betrayer in the days before Altador. There weren’t pyjamas or fluffy house slippers in those days. They never changed clothes because they had no changes of clothes, and would never think to spend extra money on clothes just to wear to sleep. Even in the days before the modern conveniences of modern Neopia, Spite would have never seen The Betrayer or any of her sisters in such a state of disarray. Spite couldn’t be polite with the burning questions being raised in her mind. She simply and bluntly stated, “You can’t accept quests looking like that.”
Jhudora glanced back for a second, dark circles visible under her eyes without concealer. Spite began to feel a sense of dread until Jhudora let out an anemic chuckle, “I can’t.”
Spite nodded as she awaited an explanation. After a few moments, she realized that there wasn’t going to be one. Spite then cautiously asked, “Why aren’t you dressed like a faerie right now?”
Jhudora shrugged. “We spent so much time pretending Virtupets didn’t exist. We tried to make Faerieland a time capsule of the days of old. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for the pomp and circumstance of always being awake to take a quest and never wearing clothes that any xweetok or gnorbu would be happy wearing . . . but we’re just tired.” She looked out of her window, “After the fall of Faerieland, what’s the point?” She looked down at the pan on the stove and sighed, “I never did any of this idiotic mess before the fall. I was so happy to sit on my cloud and wait around for people to ask me for quests.” She turned to Spite and pointed at her own unmade face, “This is what happens when you see for yourself that the world is moving too fast. You realize how irrelevant you’re becoming.”
Spite stared forward blankly, unsure if she was following at all.
“I don’t know who started the Altador Cup, Spite, and I don’t know how it’s possible that they keep the residents of Altador in the dark about what happens inside the colosseum to keep them complacent with thousand year old technology,” Jhudora turned back to her stove, “But it confuses me. Faeries were required to know of all of the lands, even if we pretended that only Taelia knew about Terror Mountain and only Judiah knew about Mystery Island. But even when Dr. Sloth was in full force, Fyora tried to shield us from Virtupets. Technology and magic are virtually incompatible.”
Spite had so many questions running through her head. She wasn’t sure if she recognized even half of the names that Jhudora had rattled off, so she simply asked about the last name she knew she had no recollection of. “Who is Virtupets?”
Jhudora laughed as she turned off the stove. She pushed the pan off of the burner and sat down across from Spite. She simply studied Spite’s face for a few moments before stating, “You really don’t know.”
“No, I really don’t.” Spite stared in confusion, “There’s . . . a lot of lands?”
“Yes, yes,” Jhudora nodded, “Maybe twenty of them.”
Spite looked down at her hands and started to count the lands she knew of on her hands. She could barely come to five, let alone twenty. She looked up at Jhudora and asked again, “Who is Virtupets?”
“Up in the sky, there’s a red star that twinkles brighter than all of the other ones,” Jhudora stood and looked out of the window, “Sometimes you can even see it during the day.” She glanced back at Spite before looking back out of the window and continuing, “That star is a metal ship that circles Neopia. The most technology you’ve probably heard of is a lamp . . . but they had technology there many, many years ago that still shocks me to this day.”
“A lamp?” Spite looked around the room and realized that there were a lot of things she didn’t understand in Jhudora’s kitchen. She looked down at the table and took a deep breath, “The world isn’t like Meridell and Altador anymore, is it?”
Jhudora shook her head, “No.”
Spite stood up without saying a word and sprinted to the stairwell before racing down the stairs. Vanity was lying on her back with a Double Agent Zafara Plushie draped over her eyes while Malice was frantically trying on top coats in front of a full length mirror.
Malice glanced over at Spite and laughed, “Jhudora went through a very strange pirate phase apparently . . .”
Spite took a deep breath before nearly shouting, “The world is bigger and scarier than we ever thought I was and it scares me. I want to go home to Altador and I don’t want to see technology!”
Vanity sat up, the plushie slumping down onto her lap. Her eyes were filled with confusion as Malice turned to Spite and asked, “What? The abacuses can talk here or something?”
“There’s a star with Neopians on it and they have lamps or something!” Spite threw her arms up, not sure how to communicate her emotions.
Malice picked up the book she had been holding earlier that morning, “I guess you found out there’s more to Neopia than Meridell, Altador, and Faerieland too.”
Vanity yawned, “So, there’s more than three cities in Neopia. Big deal.”
“Very big deal!” Spite waved her arms about, “Lamps!”
“Spite, do you even know what a lamp is?” Malice rolled her eyes. She opened the book to a page she had bookmarked. She turned it to Vanity so that she could see it. “This must be an old map, because Faerieland is still in the sky and I couldn’t find any mentions of a place called Shenkuu.”
“Nor is Altador on there . . .” Vanity took the book and studied the map, “No one knew about Altador.”
Malice nodded before stating, “I’ve decided to tell Jhudora we want to go to Krawk Island. I found a spell that will summon a group of sisters who may be useful in our plan.”
“Why have a plan when we can go to a place without lamps?!” Spite jumped up in the air, “We can go home!”
Malice took a deep breath before she began walking to Spite, punctuating every step with a stern word, “Maybe I want to see this new world.” Once Malice was in front of Spite, Spite was shaking like a leaf.
Vanity looked up from the book. She stood and looked around the room. “She won’t take us to some star, will she?”
“Of course not. From what I read, most of Neopia is as dark and backwards as Altador was,” Malice sighed as she looked back to Vanity, “And I found no mentions of Neopia Central.”
“Why Krawk Island, though?” Vanity pulled her legs up onto the couch so that she could hug them close to her chest.
Malice made her way back to the pile of clothes so that she could also sit down. She looked up at the ceiling and answered truthfully, “Because then maybe we’d have enough faeries down here to overpower her if she goes completely crazy.”
Vanity bit her lip as Spite stared in shock. Spite and Vanity never used their eyes to communicate the way that Malice and Vanity did, but they could both feel in that moment that they had the same nervousness and anxiety. Malice ignored the tension in the room as she picked up a hat with a giant feather in it and placed it on her head. She glanced at one of the many mirrors in the room before walking up the stairs.
Vanity and Spite stared at each other as they heard Malice make an announcement to Jhudora at the top of her lungs, “Jhudora, darling, change of plans! We’re going to Krawk Island!”
To be continued…