The Snow Faerie's Quest: Part Two
Sammy and Jack exchanged a nervous glance. “We’ll find you an Orange Negg for the Negg Faerie, don’t worry, Taelia,” Sammy reassured her, and watched as she closed the door in front of them. Sammy turned to his friend. “Even Taelia knows about the Snowager,” he said.
“I wonder if that means he’s guarding an Orange Negg?” Jack wondered. “I bet we can find one someplace in Happy Valley, though. There are neggs everywhere, and there’s bound to be an orange one some place for us to buy.”
Sammy and Jack set off on their quest. They made their way to a few local shops to see if any of them carried neggs, but none of them did. The shopkeeper at the Ice Crystal Shop shook his head and told them, “Only Kari the Negg Faerie sells neggs, but I haven’t seen an Orange Negg in her shop for some time. You might have trouble with this one, boys.” A few hours passed, and yet the two friends could not find a single Orange Negg.
“What are we going to do?” Sammy sighed, trying not to feel too dejected. They still had some time before sundown, when Taelia would be wondering what was taking them so long, but he knew they were going to have to find the negg soon.
Jack began to reply, but his voice was drowned out by the sound of a nearby Neopet cheering. They spun around to see a Lupe jumping up and down in front of the Snowager’s ice cave a few dozen meters away. The Lupe was holding something shiny in his hands.
“Did he just come from inside the Snowager’s cave?” Jack gasped. He and Sammy immediately ran over to investigate. To their surprise, the Lupe was holding a Purple Negg.
“Excuse me,” Sammy addressed the Lupe. “Did you just get that negg from the cave behind you?”
The Lupe nodded eagerly. “Yes, I did!”
The boys’ eyes widened. “How did you not get caught by…the Snowager?” Jack asked in awe.
“That old worm is sound asleep! Nothing is waking him anytime soon,” the Lupe replied.
Sammy thought for a moment. Was it too good to be true? He knew he had to ask the question that was on his mind, because he knew Jack was thinking the same thing. “So the Snowager is guarding neggs as part of his treasure? Did you happen to see any…Orange Neggs while you were in there?”
“Boys, there were neggs of EVERY color in that worm’s pile!” the Lupe laughed. “Go check it out for yourself, but step quietly!” Before Sammy or Jack could ask any more questions, the Lupe walked away happily with his new treasure.
The two friends stared at each other for a few moments before saying anything. They both knew what the other was thinking. They knew they shouldn’t risk it—getting blasted by a giant ice worm would not only be a painful experience, but it would get them in way more trouble than hitting Miss Galley with a snowball had. But they were exhausted from their hunt and wanted to end their quest soon, and Sammy thought that sneaking a peek of the Snowager WOULD be exhilarating. “Let’s do it,” he said, and Jack nodded in agreement.
Sammy led the way, approaching the mouth of the glittering cave. He couldn’t believe they were actually going to do this. But if the Lupe was able to get away with a piece of treasure unharmed, why couldn’t they? Without exchanging any words, the friends made their first footsteps inside of the cave, and within minutes they were well inside.
“It’s so…cold!” Jack murmured. Sammy thought so too; the icy walls of the cave seemed to trap the bitter coldness inside, and no sunlight reached this far into the cave, so they would have to deal with it. “Let’s get this stupid negg quickly,” he said.
After a few minutes of walking silently towards the back of the cave, they noticed a small ray of light around one of the bends. “Where is that light coming from?” Sammy whispered. “Let’s go check it out.”
They stepped towards the bend and gasped at what they saw. A small hole on the roof of the cave was letting in a ray of sunlight, which cast itself over the biggest pile of treasure either of the boys had ever seen in their entire lives. Plushies, keyrings, neggs, battledome weapons, books, and more…the rumors were actually true! There really was a load of hidden treasure in the ice cave! But then Sammy remembered what else the rumor had said. The treasure should be guarded by the ice worm, so where was this worm?
Sammy turned to ask Jack, but Jack’s eyes were wide and he once again lifted his hand to point, looking exactly as he had when they had hit Miss Galley with the snowball earlier that day. “The…Snowager!” Jack whimpered. Sammy spun around to see where Jack was pointing, and at first he did not see the worm that his friend was trying to show him.
But then Sammy saw it. It was way bigger than he had ever imagined—what Sammy had thought was one of the walls of the cave was actually part of its body. The Snowager was what appeared to be a giant Snowickle, but unlike the tiny cute petpet, this creature was so large that its body and tail were wrapped in a coil around the pile of treasure. Sammy almost jumped back in alarm when he spotted the Snowager’s face, but fortunately, as the Lupe had told them, its eyes were closed and it was fast asleep.
Sammy scanned the pile of treasure for what they were looking for. Among the pile, right next to the Snowager’s face, sat exactly what they had come for: a beautiful Orange Negg. “Quick, let’s grab that thing and get out of here before it wakes up!” he whispered to Jack.
“But it’s basically right in front of its nose!” Jack protested, his voice rising slightly.
“Shhh!” Sammy quieted him. “We can’t be too loud or else it will wake up. As long as we move slowly and silently, we should be able to grab it and escape.” Sammy could tell that Jack still wanted to protest, but he kept his mouth shut this time.
Sammy led the way once more. He tip-toed as quietly as he could towards the Snowager’s face, hardly believing what he was doing. He told himself over and over that everything was going to be fine, that they would just pick up the one item they needed, leave the cave, and give the item to Taelia. Finally, he found himself so close to the Snowager’s face that he could reach out and touch it. Jack prodded his shoulder, nudging him to take the negg. Sammy almost opened his mouth to argue, “Why does it have to be me?!” but he knew that if he spoke now, he risked waking up the icy monster in front of them.
Sammy held his breath and reached out to the Orange Negg. He tried to lift it up, but it was wedged between a few other items and the Snowager’s face. The cave didn’t feel cold anymore; instead, Sammy was sweating, trying to free the item they needed. Finally, the negg budged, and Sammy pulled it out of the pile.
Before he could feel a moment of triumph, the other items in the pile began to collapse into the space that the negg had been just a second ago. Books and weapons slammed into the side of the Snowager’s face. Sammy and Jack immediately tensed up, waiting for the ice worm to react, but it hardly even twitched. They forced themselves to try to relax, and slowly started backing away, negg in hand.
The boys didn’t even walk a meter away before they heard a loud crack. Jack jumped in surprise. He had stepped on a Usuki doll, splitting it in half. Before Sammy even realized what was happening, a deafening screech sounded behind them. Somehow, the cracking of the toy had woken up the Snowager!
“Let’s get out of here!” Sammy cried and started running, Jack following closely behind him. The two friends sprinted towards the entrance of the cave, but the icy floors made it difficult to move quickly. Behind them, the Snowager was fully awake and slithering towards them angrily.
Sammy turned behind him to see how close the ice worm was to them, but in the process, he lost his footing, dropped the Orange Negg, and he felt himself slipped to the ground. “Keep going without me!” he screamed to Jack.
But Jack turned around to grab him. “We’re in this together!” he yelled, trying to pull Sammy back up. In that time, the Snowager had caught up to them, and the creature slammed its tail in a circle around them to trap them. “We’re doomed!” The Snowager was staring right at Sammy and Jack, and it screeched at them again. It opened its mouth, preparing its infamous icy blast.
But just as the two friends embraced each other, expecting to be blasted, a glowing blue light shot out from behind them. The rays of light hit the Snowager in the face, causing it to recoil.
“Follow me!” a voice shouted in Sammy and Jack’s ears. They spun around to see who the voice belonged to.
It was Taelia!
She gripped her Wand of the Snow Faerie in her hand. Her wand must have been the source of the blue rays that had hit the Snowager. The Snow Faerie ushered them out of the cave quickly while the Snowager was blinded from the rays. It all happened so fast that Sammy barely registered what was happening, and together the three of them reached the mouth of the cave within minutes.
“I’ve never been so happy to see daylight!” Jack gasped, stumbling out of the cave.
Taelia glared down at them, hands on her hips. “Why did you two enter that cave, especially when I specifically warned you not to go anywhere near it?!” she demanded, not wasting a moment of their freedom. Neither Sammy nor Jack said a word, but instead bowed their heads in shame. They knew they messed up yet again. “You could have been seriously injured!” she scolded. “You’re lucky that caught a glimpse of you headed into the cave and came to rescue you while I was already so busy.”
“We’re really sorry, Taelia,” Sammy said sincerely, his head still bowed. “Not only did we put ourselves in danger, but we put you in danger for having to rescue us.” He suddenly remembered their quest for the Orange Negg and how he had dropped it when he slipped on the ice. “And we didn’t even complete your quest for the Negg Faerie’s present.”
“Actually,” Jack interrupted, “we DID do that.” He pulled the Orange Negg out of his pocket. “I managed to grab it after you slipped!” Jack handed the negg to Taelia.
Taelia took the negg and examined it thoughtfully. Then she sighed. “You did complete the quest like I had asked you to. However, you put both of us in danger doing it! Do you know what this means?”
Sammy had a feeling he knew what she was going to say, but he asked anyway, “What does that mean?”
“It means you will be completing another quest for me tomorrow! And this time, you will be fetching an item for me the safe and proper way—finding it someplace that isn’t forbidden!”
Sammy and Jack nodded and exchanged a glance, knowing very well that they deserved this task. They were going to do it the right way tomorrow to prove to Taelia that they were sincere about their apology. “We will, Taelia,” Sammy said. “See you tomorrow.”
Taelia smiled. “See you tomorrow.”