Caution: Quills may be sharp Circulation: 155,374,082 Issue: 216 | 11th day of Storing, Y7
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Yours Truly, Illusen


by aikomizu92

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My small, bare feet padded against the wooden floor of my home quietly. As I sat down at my earthy desk, another wave of sadness washed over me, releasing a sigh of anguish from my lips. My reminiscing of better times had once again brought me into a level of short depression. I fluttered my wings softly, and flipped my red and green hair over my shoulder, reaching for a leaf-bound journal. I opened it and scanned the pages quickly, flipping past some, pausing on others, until I had come to a completely blank page. I reached for my green pencil, and blew on the tip gently before bending down over the page to scrawl away my thoughts.

     Dear Journal,

      I was thinking again today. Not like before, not about the birds singing and the bees buzzing and feeling Mother Nature go about her work beneath my toes, but about a much more dreadfully sad thing.

     About my sister.

     I cannot help but remember what she did. And I cannot help but lose myself in the memory, playing it over and over again. Earlier, as I stared down at Meridell, I was so overwhelmingly depressed that I ran to my bed and collapsed upon it, buried in a fit of sobs. When I do this, the flowers and leaves surrounding my bedside table and bed wilt, and then I have to come back to a cheerier mood before refreshing them to their once vibrant selves.

     I have only a short time, as a young Kougra is on his first quest for me, but I will express myself for as long as I can, and I will try to tell you the story of what happened that dreadful evening.

     * * *

     "Jhudora! Judie, where are you?" A small earth faerie flew from tree to tree, listening for her best friend intently. "Where is that faerie?" she muttered under her breath.

     "Right here,"

     The earth faerie wheeled around in surprise, caught off guard by the dark shadow lingering quietly behind her. "Oh, gosh! You scared me, Judie!"

     The dark faerie growled, "Don't call me Judie, Illusen." Her purple and green hair flowed down her back, stopping nearly at her waist. Her long, green fingernails glittered menacingly, and her purple eyes reflected the setting sun.

     Illusen narrowed her skinny, red eyebrows. "What's been up with you lately, huh? You used to love the nickname Judie, but nowadays you're avoiding me more and more, and, well…"

     "Don't call me Judie."

     "Oh, yeah, and what if I do? Judie? Judie, Judie, Judie?"

     Jhudora frowned, then smirked. "Lulu." Illusen was surprised, her mouth gaping open like a fish out of water. She looked angry, then her bell-like laughter filled the clearing they had stopped in.

     "Ha! You got me all right." Illusen wiped a small tear from her eye, and then looked at her surroundings. It was very dark. And she couldn't feel the plant's vibrant pulse here as well as she could back home with Fyora. She fluttered to a nearby tree, and put her hand on it gently. With a sharp cry, she pulled back and cradled her hand softly. "It's… dead," she whispered.

     "As are many things here," Jhudora replied. "I'm glad you followed me tonight, Illusen. I want to show you something. It's like nothing you've ever seen before! It's amazing." Illusen gazed into her eyes and saw a spark of almost insane glee protruding from the dark purple pupils. "Come on, come on! You'll love it! It'll change Faerieland forever."

     Illusen ignored her friend's babbling and expressed caution. "Are you sure it's safe, Jhudora? I mean, it's getting really dark, and Fyora says that Faerieland isn't entirely stable yet, seeing as it's only just been created…"

     Jhudora became silent. She muttered something nearly inaudible under her breath. Illusen's pointed ears just barely made it out.

     "I am not a chicken!" Illusen puffed out her chest proudly and strode forward into the dark clump of trees. She stopped and, with her back still facing Jhudora, said, "Where are we going again?"

     Jhudora got excited again, and sped off into the trees. Illusen dodged tree branches and clumps of leaves clinging weakly to the limbs, she touched what she could to bring it back to life, but most was too long gone for her to replenish their health. Jhudora, meanwhile, was just a dark blur in the distance.

     They traveled for a long time, so long that Illusen's wing beats came farther and farther apart. "Jhudora, when will we be there?"

     "Soon… far… close…" came back the jumbled reply. Illusen just sighed and pressed onward.

     Both green and purple wings drooping, Jhudora and Illusen finally came to a stop. Illusen surveyed her surroundings with fear. This place couldn't be in Faerieland! It was too dark, too dank. Long vine limbs reached out towards Illusen, frozen into place. She shivered. This place wasn't natural. By instinct, she knew that it should be warm here, but it was cool instead. Unearthly sounds echoed out from the surrounding trees. Something rattled in a nearby bush, and Illusen stifled a scream.

     "Shush, would ya? You don't want to bother the things that live in these parts," Jhudora warned.

     Illusen just whimpered in reply. She clung to Jhudora's arm, afraid to stray, afraid that the plants would take her. That her own kin would bring her down without a thought. And so, she stayed with Jhudora, never leaving her side. And Jhudora didn't seem to notice that Illusen hung onto her belt, her arm, her hair. She snarled once when Illusen drifted to close to a beautiful blue flower, but, at hearing that sound, Illusen sprang right back to Jhudora and was hooked again.

     The dark faerie moved through the thicket, dodging thorns, venomous plants and dangerous glades as if she had been there many times before. There seemed to be an invisible path that only she could see. Illusen cowered more and more after every footfall, every sound, every whisper in the trees.

     Jhudora finally slowed down, and Illusen could hear even more sounds coming from the glade that lay ahead, more rattling, whispering, spitting, hissing, screeching, venomous sounds. She heard whimpers, and even the cries of tortured souls, rocking on a bed of soil, losing their selves in sadness, grief, and mostly pain. But the plant life cried out to her most of all. How horrid it was! It pained her to take every step. The plants there were being tortured like nothing Illusen had ever experienced. She held back sobs and tears until Jhudora slowed to a stop.

     Jhudora smiled menacingly, and brushed back a few twigs and leaves. Illusen gasped as Jhudora revealed a-

          * * *

     "Illusen! Illusen! I got it! I got it! Am I in time?" A blue Kougra panted, paws on his knees, right outside my bedroom window. I wiped my eyes and plastered a smile on my face while writing down the last few sentences in my Journal for today:

     Must go. I might finish the story another day, but for now it's a mystery. A dreadfully sad mystery, but a mystery none the less. The red Kougra, Kimbala92, calls, and I must answer my never-ending job in Meridell.

      Yours Truly,

      Illusen

The End

Author's Note: If you see this, then that means I got into the Neopian Times! This one is dedicated to my pets (hey!) and my friends.

 
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