Love & War
I was just busy sweeping up the kitchen of the castle...yes you heard me. Castle. And before I go any further, this isn't some princess castle where everyone lives happily ever after. No. This is a creepy castle that resides deep within the Haunted Woods of Neopia.
The Castle of Eliv Thade. Puzzle master extraordinaire.
Everyone knows about him. He can solve the most complex anagrams and riddles within seconds. How he can do it is a mystery to us all. Maybe he was born with a high IQ. Maybe his parents sent him to the best of Neoschools. Maybe at birth a chip was surgically implanted into his brain. Who knows?
Eliv can be brutal towards his servants. Constantly forcing us to work and do errands for him and all. Pushing us around thinking he is entitled to do what he wants. He may be a word master, but he is no king or queen. He needs to pull his diseased head out of the clouds.
His dark green, scar faced head. That no one knows where he got it from.
So yeah. I was sweeping up the smooth, black and white tiled kitchen floors. My best friend Hallie, a pink Kacheek with a happy-go-lucky personality, joined me, preparing to do the dishes.
"Why are we working for this guy?" Hallie said, her face full of exasperation.
"We need the money. And there are very limited jobs around Neopia. Needing tickets and stuff for the more decent jobs. And everyone grabs the basic jobs like vultures." I groaned.
Plus, for a greedy Kacheek like him he actually gives a decent paycheck."
"True." Was all Hallie replied before concentrating on the dirty dishes. She turned the faucet and the clear water poured over the dishes. I just continued sweeping until the floor was spotless. "I wonder where Chloe is?"
"Who knows. He's probably making her sort his books in his library again. The nine million books he has in there."
As Hallie was washing the dishes, a smirk grew across her petite face as the dishes became covered in bubbly soap. She decided to flick dish soap at me.
"Hey!" I exclaimed while Hallie laughed. I went over to the sink, dipped my hands in the lukewarm water, and splashed bubbles at her in retaliation. Her mouth opened in shock and I started to laugh. Then, it turned into an all out water fight.
In the midst of our fun, Thade barged into the kitchen. "What is going on here?!" He yelled. Hallie and I froze. "My kitchen is a complete mess! CLEAN IT UP IMMEDIATELY." His voice boomed as he stormed away.
After a brief silence, all Hallie and I could do was burst into complete laughter.
Aargh! I can't believe those servants made a mess of my kitchen! There was water and soap all over the place! Well now they have to mop it up so who's laughing now?
Annoyed from the disruption, I went back to solving my puzzles. A young Bori had decided to challenge me. Like all the others, he will fail too. For I am Eliv Thade. Neopia's greatest puzzle master.
"You have been given the task of transporting 3,000 apples, 1,000 miles from Appleland to Bananaville. Your truck can carry 1,000 apples at a time. Every time you travel a mile towards Bananaville you must pay a tax of 1 apple, but you pay nothing when going in the other direction towards Appleland. What is highest number of apples you can get to Bananaville?" The riddle read. The young Bori looked oh so confident.
"833 apples." I stated to the Bori's surprise. "What. How?" The Bori asked.
"First you make 3 trips of 1,000 apples, 333 miles. You will be left with 2,001 apples and 667 miles to go. Then you take 2 trips of 1,000 apples, 500 miles. You will be left with 1,000 apples and 167 miles to go in which you have to leave an apple behind. You therefore then travel the last 167 miles with one load of 1,000 apples and are left with 833 apples in Bananaville."
The Bori was astonished, gawking at my success. He left in disappointment.
Once we got the mess cleaned up, Hallie and I proceeded to go upstairs to our rooms. For the job, the other servants and I had to move into the castle. Although sometimes I wonder why I did this to begin with.
Hallie followed me into my room, which was spacious. The walls were made out of grey bricks. The floors were made out of wood in the shade of bronze. There were shelves across from my bed, consisting of books, framed pictures, and some old relics.
"He was so angry." She was in hysterics. She has been going on about this for an hour now. And I still could not help but chuckle.
"That was fun, though." I replied smirking. "Ol' Eliv needs to lighten up once in awhile."
"Agreed." Hallie stated.
A knock was heard at the bedroom door. It was our third and other best friend, Chloe, a green Kacheek who was quite introverted. "I heard Eliv yelling while I was dusting. I was curious as to what went on."
"Oh Chloe, you should have SEEN the look on his face." Hallie wheezed.
"Though we got stuck mopping up the kitchen which wasn't fun." I stated. "But still. We were wondering where you were earlier."
"Ah, just working in the library. As usual. He has thousands of books up there."
"Does he?" I stated intrigued.
"Oh yeahhhhh." Chloe stated, drained. "And his shelves STILL aren't full yet. Man, I wish I could read some. But he is so protective over them. As if they're his children."
"Maybe Dewey can lend you some. She has a few on the shelves over there." She gestured to the medium sized shelf. "Anyways, if he wasn't such a loser, he could have had some kids. But he's got such an obnoxious personality. Even his looks reveal his ugliness." Hallie replied and we chuckled. "I wish we could get revenge on him somehow."
"I know. He treats all of us servants like we're peasants. It's sickening. But things would only get worse if we acted out against him."
But I was tired of it too. Thade deserved to be taught a lesson.
Then I had an idea. "You said he treats his books like children, huh Chloe?"
"Does he happen to have any puzzle books that he completes for fun?"
"He has a DOZEN of those. Completes them all within two days to a week to put into some bigger book. Why?"
I grinned as I took those facts into consideration. "You'll see."
"Dewey no! Do you want him to come after us?! He already abuses us enough!" Chloe was alarmed but I put my hand on her shoulder.
"Oh don't be ridiculous, Chloe. It's just going to be a little lesson...that's all." I smirked despicably.
Chloe, Hallie, and I poked our heads into Eliv's library, making sure to be silent. "Ugh, he's in there." I sighed.
"Oh what a bummer." Chloe lied. "Welp, better get back to work, see ya!"
She tried to dash away from the library, but I stepped on her tail. She winced in pain. "Nice try. We need a diversion. Hallie, you think you can lure him away from the library?"
So she went down into the dim hallway and pulled out a radio and started blasting pop music. The other servants stopped whatever they were doing and came out from the other rooms, bewildered. "HEY Y'ALL, WHO'S READY TO HAVE SOME FUN?"
No one answered, but Hallie continued dancing. When she noticed no one else joining her, a look of vexation was on her face. "Well, what are ya waiting for? DANCE."
As Hallie continued partying, gradually others started to join her. It was actually fun to see her looking so ecstatic over just dancing. I started to wish I could join in...
Nope. Need to keep my head in the game.
I could hear Eliv grumbling from the library and stomping out here. Chloe and I hid quickly so he wouldn't see us.
"Oh no. He's going to kill Hallie-"
I place my hand over her mouth and watched Eliv storm down the concrete steps to the hallway. As Hallie noticed Eliv approaching, she shot me a look that told me to go. So I rushed into the library, shutting the door behind me. Chloe swiftly went to her room. She didn't want to be a part of this.
So it was just me. I looked around, examining what was in the room. Jeez, his library looks spooky. There was a purple floor and rug under a green, torn up chair with purple details. The shelves contained books between the shelves and a few on top of them. A portrait of the castle hung on the dark walls. On the wall far away from the front of a chair consisted of a fireplace with vibrant orange flames crackling upon short logs.
I walked over to the shelves and examined them, looking to see if there were any puzzle books, but there wasn't any. Enclosed in a glass case, there was a book. I broke the glass and took the book out to examine it.
"Big Book Of Puzzles--a very exciting book packed full of puzzles to keep your pet amused." It stated in white on the tan cover. I quickly opened it. It was already full. At the very last page contained an image of a younger Thade holding the book, overjoyed. I turned over the image and it had a date scribbled in blue pen on it and the caption 'Eliv's very first book of puzzles.'". Getting the vibe that this most likely meant a lot to Eliv, I decided to destroy it. That would show him to back off.
So I strode over to the fireplace, proceeding with throwing the book in it. I felt adrenaline rush through me. Eliv would feel DESTROYED.
As I was about to throw the heavy book in, something stopped me. Whether if it was guilt or not...I had no idea. My mind thought back to that image of young Eliv, looking elated to receiving his first puzzle book. As my mind played over that thought repeatedly, I became filled with doubt. I couldn't do it. I had to find another way to get revenge.
But as I contemplated this, I was busted. Eliv barged into the library with Hallie and another servant behind his tail. "Dewey! Get out of there!" She exclaimed but it was too late. Eliv's face was filled with surprise.
He caught me.
To be continued…