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The Blumaroo Who Couldn't Jump


by eggy_the_great

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Once upon a time there was a little blue Blumaroo. His name was Muddytoes. He lived in a little house in the little (but quickly expanding) town of Neopia.

      As we all know, there are nice Neopets and mean Neopets. And sometimes the mean Neopets are mean but they don't know they're being mean and they walk around completely oblivious. But this one other Blumaroo Muddytoes knew was red and frowned and was mean on purpose. This especially mean Blumaroo's name was Wilson, and he prowled the streets with his buddies, Tiger (who growled at whoever he passed) and Blake (who was always drinking Neocola and constantly spat) and these three menaces would bully anyone who dared to roam the streets between noon and 3 pm. If it weren't for school until noon and nap time at three o'clock, then they would march the streets all day. No one dared leave their houses during that time.

      Now, Muddytoes is a nice Neopet. He reads, does his homework and sets the table before dinner with all the silverware in the right place. Muddytoes, however made the very horrible mistake of making a cake and deciding to go out to the store to get some butter, and guess who he ran into?

      "Who's this?" Wilson said, popping out from behind a tree right in front of Muddytoes and scaring him to pieces. Wilson was chewing a huge wad of gum, and when he snapped his fingers, his two cronies came out from behind the tree, laughing.

      "I-I'm M-muddytoes," Muddytoes said, trying to be brave, but he was stuttering so much that Tiger, Blake and Wilson could tell he was scared.

      "Don't act like we don't know who you are," Wilson said. "You're the biggest geek in this whole neighborhood. You're Muddytoes who reads all those books all the time."

      "Um, yeah... I-I read... a little bit..." Muddytoes said, looking at the ground.

      "Yeah," Blake agreed. "I bet that's where you're headed, the bookstore," he sneered.

      "No! I was going to the grocery store!" Muddytoes said, crossing his arms in defense.

      "What for?" Wilson said in a very non-curious way.

      "I was going to make a cake."

      "Mmmm... cake," Tiger said, licking his lips, but he was quickly stopped as Wilson put up his hand.

      "And how do you know how to make this cake, Muddytoes?" Wilson said in a menacing whisper.

      "I have a recipe bo-" Muddytoes said, stopping himself.

      "Were you just going to say..." Wilson said.

      "BOOK?" all three of them sneered.

      "No, I, um, was going to say, um..."

      "That's what I thought," Wilson said. "Come on boys, this Blumaroo stays inside reading... let's see how he jumps."

      "Yeah, yeah. He can't learn that from book reading," Tiger said.

      "Good one," Blake laughed and then spat.

      "All right, Muddytoes," Wilson said ignoring his pals. "We'll make this easy for you. All you have to do is jump from this crack," he said, pointing at the sidewalk, "to me." And he backed up three steps. Muddytoes gulped.

      "Whenever you're ready," Wilson said calmly.

      "Yeah, yeah. Whenever you're ready," Tiger said, slobbering and bouncing up and down.

      "Shut it," Wilson said to his overexcited friend who immediately obeyed and stopped.

      Muddytoes closed his eyes, breathed in and out slowly, counted to five... and jumped.

      Wilson, Tiger and Blake began laughing hysterically, and Muddytoes opened his eyes. He had only jumped about two inches.

      "Just what I thought! Muddytoes can't jump!"

      "Ha-ha! What would you do if there was a puddle, Muddytoes?"

      "He'd try to jump over it and just splash into the mud!"

      "Haha! That's why you're called Muddytoes! Your toes would get all muddy!"

      "Muddytoes! Muddytoes!" they all chimed in. "Muddytoes can't jump!"

      Muddytoes ran as fast as he could (which wasn't very fast at all) back to his house, completely forgetting about the chocolate cake he was going to make. The bullies' laughter echoed in his head all the way home, making tears spill out of this eyes.

      Muddytoes lay in his little bed that night, not able to sleep after the traumatic experience the three bullies had caused him. He truly felt as blue on the inside as he was on the outside.

      "They're right! What kind of Blumaroo am I if I can't jump!" he thought to himself, and that's when he decided he had to run away. He couldn't stand living near those mean Blumaroos and with the constant reminder that he wasn't good enough.

      So that very night he packed up some omelettes and a clean pair of underwear into his backpack along with his notebook and pencil he used for school. He also took a map of Neopia as he snuck off into the night.

      He wandered for what seemed like hours in the dark until his eyes got too weary to see the map and he lay down to sleep under a nice oak tree.

      "Well, well, well. What have we here?" a familiar voice said, prodding Muddytoes.

      Muddytoes woke up groggy from sleeping outside, but once his eyes focused, he could see it was none other than Wilson, Tiger and Blake.

      "Look what the cat dragged into my backyard," Wilson said.

      "What?! But, I'm in the forest! I've traveled for miles!" Muddytoes said, confused.

      "Miles! You've traveled two houses down!" Wilson said. He was clearly enjoying this moment.

      "What's this?" Tiger said pulling the map off of Muddytoes who had used it as a blanket.

      "A map?" Blake said.

      "A map!" Wilson screeched. "He had a map and still got lost! Looks like you can read just as well as you jump."

      All three of them laughed their hideous laugh.

      "Hey, look guys!" Blake said, pointing through the gate. "It's Paulie from across the street! Looks like he's out for a little morning stroll!

      "Can we tease him, Wilson, please?" Tiger begged.

      "Yeah," Wilson said, "let's go tease Paulie. I'm tired of this loser." And he kicked Muddytoes one final time as he ran off to bully another victim.

      Muddytoes sniffled and gently rubbed the ache where Wilson had kicked him.

      "Are you okay?" a squeaky little voice said.

      "Huh? Who's there?" Muddytoes said, whipping his head around looking for the voice.

      "Don't worry, I'm not like them," the voice said and a little yellow meepit crawled out from behind a bush.

      "Who are you?" asked Muddytoes.

      "I'm Lance, Wilson's petpet," the meepit said.

      "Oh, I-uh-I didn't know Wilson had a petpet."

      "Well, yeah. Anyway, I just wanted to let you know that you're not stupid."

      "Yes, I am. I couldn't even read a map."

      "It was dark, and you were tired."

      "But still..." Muddytoes said, his voice trailing off.

      "Do you know what they were talking about yesterday before they spotted you walking down the street?"

      "No."

      "Well," Lance the meepit said, sitting down next to Muddytoes, "they were just saying how they wished they could read better."

      "Really?" Muddytoes said surprised, "But they can jump well. They don't have to know how to read."

      "Sure, they can jump. Wilson jumped all the way up into a tree and saved a stranded Babaa."

      "He wouldn't save anyone," Muddytoes said.

      "Well, he did throw it up there, but that's not the story the newspapers got."

      "He was in the newspapers?"

      "Yes. He saw his picture in there, but he couldn't read the headline or the article," Lance said.

      "Oh, I see what you're saying."

      "I say you get him back for what he's done to you," Lance said.

      "Like, kick him in the tail?" Muddytoes said excitedly.

      "No! That's what Wilson would do because that's what he's good at! What are you good at?"

      "I'm good at, um, school?" Muddytoes said, unsure.

      "From what I hear, you're great at school. Now I say you get back at Wilson using your smarts!"

      And so, that day after school, Muddytoes was not afraid to stand in the middle of the street and watch Wilson, Blake and Tiger walk up to him with evil grins.

      "Oh look who we have here. Muddytoes, the non-jumper!" Wilson said and his friends laughed behind him. But Muddytoes didn't move, he just smiled and pulled something out from behind his back.

      "Oh look what we have here," Muddytoes said, "a book!"

      "You're going to fight us with a book?" Wilson said.

      " No," Muddytoes replied, "I'm going to ask you one simple question. What is the title of this book?"

      "I don't know," Wilson said. The grin had been wiped off his smug face.

      "It's just on the cover, just those three words right there."

      "You're the one who reads all the time, shouldn't you know?" Wilson laughed nervously.

      "I do know, I just want to see if you do too."

      "Um... M-m-mighty Looong..." Wilson said, trying to sound out the words.

      "Beep! Wrong! It says 'Playing With Fire.'" Muddytoes said.

      "Oh, well... I was close!" Wilson said, tears starting to well up in his eyes.

      "Look," Muddytoes said, putting the book away, "I'll make you a deal. I'll teach you how to read this book, if you teach me how to jump as well as you do."

      It took Wilson a while but, he finally agreed to the plan. Muddytoes taught Wilson, Tiger and Blake how to read and they taught him tail-eye coordination for jumping. And soon enough they could read full sentences and have fair jumping contests.

      But do you know what Muddytoes really taught them? He taught them to be nice and in a week's time, the street was safe to roam again between noon and 3 pm, all thanks to Muddytoes.

The End

 
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