Still thwarting Sloth's mind control... Circulation: 94,333,932 Issue: 184 | 1st day of Eating, Y7
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A Game of Mynci Beach Volleyball

by shadowcristal


"Nellie?" Joanna asked, looking at the blue Mynci. She poked at the book on her pet's head and found that Nellie was asleep. The owner grinned mischievously and raised her hand. She took away the book and shouted loudly, "Nellie! The house is on fire!"

     "W-what?" the Mynci asked, confused and blinded by the light. After a moment she calmed down and said, "I don't smell smoke."

     "Just kidding!" Joanna said, giggled and handed the book back to Nellie. The little Mynci's face took a serious expression.

     "That wasn't funny!" she blurted out as she grabbed the book, which was a manual on how to increase your intelligence. "Don't say things like this, or our home will really burn down!"

     "Take it easy!" Joanna said, patting her pet. "Anyway, you need to get up and move." She sighed. "Aw, too bad that it didn't work..."

     "That's it," the Mynci said sarcastically, "You were expecting me to jump up and run out of the house at top speed?"

     Joanna nodded and slowly took the jar of cookies away. When Nellie discovered what her owner had done, it was too late.

     "Jo, give those cookies back! They're mine!" she whined, waving with the book.

     "Not anymore," Joanna said, teasing her pet by holding up a cookie in the air. "They're confiscated! Nellie, you know you have to exercise or you'll end up like one of those obese pets from the Gourmet Club."

     "Not all pets from the Gourmet Club are obese," Nellie said quickly. "And I'm not all that fat..." She looked down and pinched the area around her waist. Okay, so maybe she was a little bit on the fat side, but that didn't mean anything, did it? She was still able to get through doors and such...

     "Well, you need to exercise," her owner said. "That's the point. Don't even attempt to make an elaborate argument." She frowned as she locked the jar in a special kitchen cupboard.

     "Humph!" Nellie felt the insult rip open an old wound as she walked away. Perhaps JO was right... It didn't hurt to exercise, but she just really didn't like it... Why waste all that time when you could read? The Mynci sat down on her beanbag chair as she admired all the hand-made Neopian Times Quills in her room. Then she opened the book and started to read again.

     Downstairs, Joanna was feeling a little bit insulted. Nellie hadn't even taken her suggestion seriously! Suddenly the doorbell rang, and Joanna realized that it was the mailman. She wanted to make a final effort, and yelled.

     "Nellie! Go and get the mail, won't you?" she shouted, hoping that it would reach Nellie's room on the second floor.

     "No!" the Mynci replied defiantly as she picked up another book. "Do it yourself!"

     The owner sighed and walked towards the door, defeated. She opened it and took the messages. Then she gave the mailman a Sweet, hoping to make his day better, and started to read all the stuff she had received.

     One 'held over' notice from the Neopian Times... Two neomails from her friend, three trading post offers... What was that? Joanna quickly flipped back and noticed an advertisement for a game.

     "Tired of your pet sitting there and doing nothing?" she read out loud. The butterfly of hope began to flutter inside her, and she continued reading quietly for herself. Finally she stood up, filled with excitement. Yes! This... This had to be the perfect solution to their never-ending problem! Finally it would end!

     Zealous and filled with energy, Joanna quickly ran upstairs to her writing desk and started writing a letter. She grinned as she put the stamp on it. Then she jogged all the way down the street and put it in the mailbox. She couldn't wait! Perhaps this would fail, like all the other attempts had done, but there she had to try, at least! Still quite jittery, Joanna returned. She used that extra energy on making her NeoGarden look nice before she went inside and checked on Nellie again. In a week or so, the experiment would begin!


     "Where are we going?" Nellie asked as they walked down the road.

     "Oh..." Joanna replied elusively with a light tone. "We're just going on a day-trip..."

     "Where?" the Mynci demanded sternly. She was not about to be tricked into doing something that she didn't want. She had a bad feeling about this. JO had pulled that trick so many times, but each time, she'd change something and Nellie would be tricked in the end anyway.

     "Mystery Island," the owner said as she dragged her Neopet. "Hurry! Otherwise we won't be there in time!"

     "Time?" Nellie wondered.


     "Ta-da! Finally we're here!" Joanna said, gesturing excitedly.

     "What's so great with that?" Nellie asked. She knew that she was being sore about this day-trip, but the heat was just so awful! The Mynci glared at her owner. "Spill it," she said, poking Joanna. "I know you're planning something."

     "Oh, nothing at all!" the owner said cheerfully as she dragged Nellie away from a fishing boat and to a beach.

     "You're lying," Nellie said as they walked along the beach. "Spill the beans, JO You aren't as good as you think."

     They walked in silence for a few minutes before Nellie saw where Joanna was taking her to and stopped. She just said 'oh' and stopped.

     "I knew it," she thought as she glared at JO "She just never gives up..."

     "Come on!" Joanna said, taking the Mynci's arm. "It's just a few steps away!"

     "I am not going to play some stupid game of volleyball," Nellie said stubbornly.

     "You are so going to!" the owner said, dragging Nellie off. The Mynci struggled, but it was useless.


     It was all about her. Her, the net and the red Mynci behind it. Nellie shuddered. In the end, Joanna had won. Now she would have to exercise, no matter how she felt about it.

     "You should've done this anyway," she told herself, feeling a little guilty as she thought of that comment. She looked at her reflection in the water. Surely she was not that fat?

     "Ready?" the other Mynci asked. Nellie nodded. Joanna threw a ball over to Nellie, and she quickly got it in the air. The volleyball bounced once on the net, and landed on the sand on the red Mynci's side.

     "Beginner's luck," her opponent muttered as Nellie served again. The blue Mynci sighed as she made every move. She knew them from her books; she knew the rules and everything... The only problem was that she had never done this before for real. Nellie shook her head as the ball landed on the red Mynci's side again.

     "Good job, Nellie!" Joanna shouted. She had never imagined her Nellie to be so good. However, JO felt a little bit disappointed about Nellie's lack of enthusiasm.

     The blue Mynci jumped and made all kinds of moves. It was as if she was a machine...

     Ouch! A ball had hit on Nellie's forehead, and she was biting her lip hard, trying not to cry. The red Mynci seemed indifferent as he returned the ball to her side. Nellie's fierce fighting spirit just wouldn't give up without a proper battle. She stood up, despite the fact that a huge bump had appeared on her forehead, and hit the ball back. The feeling of success rushed through her as the ball landed in the sand.

     Another serve. This one landed nicely on the sand, and she had scored yet another point. Finally feeling a little bit excited, Nellie played and tried her best. She hadn't thought of it before, but now she realized that she had been holding back. Gradually, the blue Mynci showed more and more excitement.

     Two more points for her opponent. Nellie growled, not wanting to lose. Despite the fact that it was her first time playing sports, she felt that she couldn't lose! It was just like a math competition, where she had to answer the question before everyone else and get the correct answer.

     After almost two hours, Nellie was exhausted. She sat down in the sand and Joanna handed her a bottle of water.

     "Was it fun?" Joanna asked. She had a feel about how the answer would be... bitter and sarcastic. The owner smiled for herself, knowing that Nellie would be the one lying. She had noticed the red face, the sweat, the excitement in the shots and the face expressions. There was no doubt about it. Even if her pet wouldn't admit it, she must've thought it was fun.

     At that question, Nellie stiffened and drank some water. She pondered. Fun... It hadn't been fun at first, just monotone and learned from the books. But then, then it turned into something different. Her opponent had used tricks that had never been mentioned in her books, and she felt like she had to win... Was that... fun? It had been hard to breathe, her sides hurt sometimes and she would miss half of the time. Perhaps it was the 'fun' that JO wanted. Nellie cleared her throat and replied.

     "Yes," the blue Mynci said as she stood up.

     "That means you're doing it again, right?" Joanna asked, surprised. She couldn't believe what Nellie said. The sarcastic, book-smart Nellie, admitting that sports was fun? "I never thought that this day would come," Joanna thought as she thanked the red Mynci and booked another time for Nellie to play.

     "See?" she said triumphantly as they walked back to their NeoHome. "I was right."

     "Yes, my lady," Nellie replied grumpily as their feet made squishing sounds in the sand. "I guess it was fun, if you can call it fun. It was just simply different..."

     "About that obesity thing..." Joanna said. "I'm sorry if I hurt your feelings." She hugged her pet fiercely. "You know, everyone likes you for who you are. It doesn't matter if you're fat or thin, tall or short... You know..."

     "Yeah," the Mynci said. "I know." She added for herself, "From my books."

The End

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