Neovian Gothic Special: Tour de Neovia
Greetings, readers! I am Alabaster Chesterdrawers, proud proprietor of the antique shop in the town of Neovia. We may have met before, if you’re the sort to procure ornate chandeliers, fancy mirrors and other home decor that fit the gothic aesthetic.
For this Neovian Gothic special edition of the Neopian Times, I’ll be offering an illustrated tour of my favourite shops and stops in my hometown. Nobody knows this place or its inhabitants better than me! My hope is that the readers of the Neopian Times will be inspired to make Neovia their next spring break vacation destination. The Faerie Festival is a fine place to go for this time of year (albeit overcrowded due to popularity), but I daresay we Neovians have some unique features to offer as well!
Onwards, then, to our first destination! Be careful, the cobbles can be uneven in some spots. Incidentally, I keep asking the mayor to have the paving re-done, but alas, most of last year’s landscaping budget went toward dark gray shrubbery and fog machines… Gotta maintain that haunted look, I guess! Maybe you can mention the cobbles to the mayor next time you’re in town.
The Crumpetmonger is one of my favourite places to visit in the morning! This shop offers the most scrumptious selection of Neovian tarts, pies, scones, and assorted pastries. The menu changes daily, you know, depending on which fruits are in season. Right now, for example, the raspberry and blueberry desserts are in full production.
I highly recommend the caramel apple Bundt cake but would suggest that first-time visitors pass on the fish pie. That thing has one head and two tails; it’s 98% likely to be genetically modified. What can I say, that’s what we get for using locally-sourced ingredients.
Please note: the Techo Strudel contains no Techos.
This is me! Regardless of whether your home is in Faerie City or on Roo Island, or if you are Edna living in a very gothic tower, there’s always a place for a slightly spooky grandfather clock or decorative lamp with unnecessary skulls. This lamp here in the picture is one of my favourites and would look great in your reading room. It’s currently on Spring Clearance for a bargain price of 50,000 NP! Get it while it lasts.
Some of my items are hand-made by me using harvested mahogany from the Haunted Woods. Others are centuries-old heirlooms that I’d like to share with the world.
PS if Edna is reading this, I got your note and have a dozen new home potionry cauldrons in stock. This new line of cauldrons is explosion-proof and acid-resistant. (The material is proprietary, patent-pending.) More available for sale to other aspiring witches and wizards.
Neovian Printing Press
“It was a dark and stormy night” is a fine cliché, but you must visit the Neovian printing press for a true taste of gothic literature! We have vampires! We have castles! We have blood! We have vampires in castles, splashing in the blood! (Or maybe it’s just a spilled Bloody Slushie, you’ll have to read to find out.)
Anyway, for all of your dark literature needs, this is your stop. Among her more interesting titles: Grave Digging Manual (because, obviously); Zombie Grarrl Alert Bulletin (a must for the cautious post-apocalyptic planner); Neovian Fine Dining Customs (we do not only eat weird stuff, promise); Why The Fairground Was Deserted (it involves zombie grarrls).
Word to the wise -- this lass is the town gossip, so be VERY careful about what you tell her, lest it become Neovia’s hottest tea! No whispering about your weird neighbour’s shenanigans or your sketchy basement potion-brewing side hustles.
Prigpants & Swolthy, Tailors
Ahh, only the finest attire for the most discerning customers! Do not waltz into here rocking your casual athleisure look, you will be summarily booted out the door. Yes, there is a dress code to… go get dressed. Don’t ask me, I pretty much live in this 80-year-old vest that my grandfather stole from -- err, anyway, that’s a story for another time.
Here only the finest suiting is offered, bespoke (of course), so tighten up your cravats, lace up your best boots, and, if you’re feeling brave and don’t mind being judged to within one inch of ego death by a lanky Lenny and mauve Mynci, come on in!
One of Neovia’s most popular haunts! Getting soaked, being yelled at, choking on water and apples -- what’s not to love? You may have surmised that this is not my favourite activity, and you would be correct. I may be a water-loving Nimmo, but I have standards, and my standards for water are: water that has not been gargled in by 50 other people prior. Seriously, this activity has been known to result in diseases in unfortunate neopets!
Plus, it makes my spectacles dirty.
If all of those wise words of warning DO go unheeded -- which, fine, I suppose apples are fun -- you may be in for some enticing treats. You can win one of twenty kinds of apples, or a Pile of Spooky Laundry (watching a coat button itself up is fascinating), a set of dentures (do not ask whose; I have not enquired), or an Unnerving Hat to make your friends nervous. If you are extremely lucky, you may pull out an Apple Bobbing Bart Plushie, which is a collectible, and squeaks when you hug it. Aww!
Bruno’s Backwoods Breakaway
This final stop is the game that you play to burn off the calories from the pastry shop and caramel apple-tasting… I’m telling you, it’s pure cardio, and I never make it past Level 7 without wheezing like I’m never going to run long distance again. I love the Neovian backdrop in the game, though (we have actual 200-year old trees that are that tall!). Watch out for the villagers hurling small rocks! Ouch! I want to emphasize that we Neovians are a civilized bunch now, but the game is a callback to the pre-Tale of Woe era when everyone was cursed and cranky.
And there you have it: the complete Tour de Neovia. See you around town!