The Mirror of Memories: Part Ten
Malin still knew that there was something I hadn't told her, but I wasn't going to say any more. She'd never believe me, anyway. Enzie and I sat at the table in silence, and Malin set a plate of turkey sandwiches in front of us. Enzie grabbed one and stuffed it into her mouth ravenously. I just stared.
"Sho... whu we goin' da do?" Enzie asked, her mouth full. Malin shrugged.
I pondered about this for a while. "Well," I started, "we have a few options. One, give the jewel to the evil guy and let him cause chaos to Neopia. Or, who knows, maybe he's actually a really good guy; he just likes to kidnap babies and threaten people. Two, we could keep the jewel and never see Kin again. Option three, we could try and trick him... and we'd get Kin back and keep the jewel." I looked up at Enzie and Malin.
"I say we keep the jewel," Enzie said loudly. "I mean, who cares about the kid? He'll find a nice home somewhere."
I wanted to punch Enzie in the face right then and there, but somehow I controlled my anger and merely glared at her. She stuck her tongue out at me.
"Enzie..." Malin said in an angry motherly tone, flashing a disapproving look towards the spotted Kougra. She looked back at me, smiling. "We should try and trick the guy. We don't want to risk the jewel getting in the hands of some lunatic, and we wouldn't want Kin to be kidnapped forever. But... I have no idea how we would trick him..."
I nodded. "He could be the smartest, most evil pet in Neopia..."
"Exactly. That's why we should just forget about this whole thing and move on with our lives. We could destroy the jewel somehow, and all our problems would be gone."
"But... what about Kin?" I questioned. "You have no heart! You don't even care!"
"Oh yes I do," Enzie insisted, standing up in her chair. She looked down at me angrily, raising her voice. "What's gonna happen if something goes wrong if we try to 'trick' this guy, huh? We could be risking the lives of everyone in Neopia! I care about Neopia! I care about the future of this world!"
I glared at her with all the hatred I could muster. "No," I said coldly. "You only care about yourself." I stood up and went down the hall without another word. I arrived at the bathroom, and as I was turning the doorknob, I heard Malin speak.
"Enzie," the Cybunny told her friend in a calm voice, "nobody ever said you had to be a part of this. So either you help us... or you leave."
Silence. I was really expecting Enzie to bolt -- but she stayed put. The spotted Kougra looked at Malin with her hard chocolate eyes. They were glossed over, as if Enzie were about to cry, which is something I wouldn't ever imagine Enzie doing.
"Malin... I don't agree with you and that Bori," she admitted, "but I'm not about to leave. You're my friend, Malin. My best friend. And I'm not going anywhere." She looked over at me, smiling. I tried to return it, but I was still angry with her.
Malin grinned. "...Okay. You know... I think I have a plan."
"Okay... Sepra? What about you?"
It was eleven in the morning, twenty-seventh day of Gathering. Enzie, Malin and I all stood in a circle by the front door of her tiny house. Each one of us was holding an item in our hands. Enzie had a fake ruby she'd pulled out of Malin's cheap Ruby Heart Necklace she hadn't worn in years. I was holding a Doctor Sloth mask and black robes we'd purchased at the costume shop for a bargain.
An umbrella case was in Malin's paws. I wanted to look inside of it and see if her journal was there. Maybe she stuffed it in with the umbrella.
Was this it? Was this the final showdown?
Malin nodded at me. I put the long black cloak on, and Enzie stuffed the jewel in the pocket.
"Oh, wait!" Malin shouted. She ran into the kitchen and the opening of cupboards could be heard. "Before we go..." She ran back to the front door, and in her hands she was holding a camera. She grinned at Enzie and I, and she held the camera out to me. I grabbed a hold of it, uncertain of her intentions. "Sepra, will you take a picture of Enzie and me?"
I nodded, taking the camera from the Cybunny.
"What're you getting at, Malin?" Enzie questioned suspiciously, as Malin put her arm around the Kougra's shoulder. Enzie cocked her eyebrow and frowned as I looked through the lens, preparing to take the photograph.
Malin sighed. "I don't know... I guess I just want to remember this moment for the rest of my life." She paused, hugging Enzie tightly. "And if something goes wrong--"
"Malin!" Enzie shouted, pushing the Cybunny away from her. "Nothing's going to go wrong! Stop worrying, you dung head. Now hurry up and take the picture." The Kougra smiled reluctantly at the camera, and Malin put her arm on Enzie's shoulders again. I pressed the button and a flash of light snapped through the room. The picture slowly rolled out of the camera. Malin grabbed it and went into the kitchen. She was in there for a few minutes. I assumed she was putting the picture in her journal or something, just like I had found it in her journal at Nera's house a few days ago. Finally, she came back to the front of the house where Enzie and I were waiting for her.
"Ready?" I asked. I slipped my claw into the pocket of the cloak I was wearing; grasping the fake ruby. The Cybunny nodded, taking a deep breath.
Enzie grunted. "Good, let's go already."
Malin opened the front door, and a burst of icy wind rushed in. The Cybunny quickly brought out her umbrella, and we set out into the rain down the streets of Neopia Central to the heart of the city, to the fountain where this 'Cel' character wanted to meet us.
We must've looked silly; the three of us walking down the streets, crowded under a little umbrella. I must have made us look even more suspicious, holding a Sloth mask in my hands and wearing a long black cloak.
Hopefully our plan would work.
It wasn't long before we reached the square. It looked a lot different than it did in the future. There was a dirt path leading up to it instead of a brick one-- there weren't beautiful flowers all around it, either. I looked around and wondered why there were barely any pets walking around doing their chores or shopping. It was eerily quiet in the Square. I shivered.
Malin led us behind a large tree and she sat down on the ground, setting the umbrella against the trunk. I put the mask on my face and smiled maliciously. I must've looked really awesome.
"What do you think?" I questioned, covering my bright orange body with the dark cloak.
Enzie snorted. "I doubt he's gonna fall for it... but it's worth a try."
Malin nodded. "The Sloth mask isn't very realistic-looking. It may be best to keep a distance." She stuck her tongue out slightly, smiling up at me. I rolled my eyes from underneath the mask.
"So... are we just going to wait here until he shows up?" Enzie asked.
Malin peeked around the tree for any sign of Cel and Kin. Her sad blue eyes scanned the park and the fountain. "Yes."
"This is getting really boring," Enzie whined after we'd been hiding behind the large tree for a while. It might have been boring for her, but my heart was racing. Would we be able to rescue Kin and prevent the freaky dude who had threatened us with the letter from getting the jewel? Well, of course we would. After all, we hadn't even brought the jewel with us. Only the decoy ruby. But still...
I tried to take even breaths and stay calm, but I was so worried, I had started to sweat. Any minute now, Cel would stroll up to the fountain and wonder where we were. Then we'd have to take the huge risk of putting our plan into action.
"So what time is it?" asked Enzie.
"Twelve by now, I reckon," Malin replied. "The park is starting to fill up with people." Her voice was monotonous. She just stared straight ahead at all of the other trees, never blinking, never moving her eyes or head. She was like a robot. Something had to be wrong. I was about to ask, but Enzie gasped and grabbed my arm, scaring me to death.
"THERE HE IS!" she yelled, pointing a sharp Kougra claw in the direction of the great big fountain. I turned my head and looked over there casually. I was shocked at what I saw. I had always imagined Cel to be a scary, malicious Darigan Eyrie or something like that, but standing right next to Kin, who was chasing a butterfly around, was a tiny baby Quiggle. His arms were crossed and he was glaring into the crowd of people around the fountain, apparently looking for us.
I gaped at the pipsqueak. "That's him?! That's Cel?!" My eyes widened and I almost started to laugh. Malin looked serious, as usual, staring at him with her hard eyes.
"Are you ready, Sepra? Enzie?" she asked, looking back at me. She got to her feet, brushing the dirt off of her bottom and knees.
"Er... yeah. I guess."
"You know it."
Malin took a deep breath and started towards the baby Quiggle. I crept around the edge of the park, covering my orange fur with the black cloak. Cel's back was turned on Malin, and she stood a few feet away from him for a few moments before going up to him and poking his shoulder. He turned around and looked up at her. Kin looked rather happy to see the Cybunny.
"Ah. You made a wise choice. Now hand over the ruby," Cel said in his evil baby Quiggle voice. "Or the baby is mine."
Malin nodded, digging around in her purse. "Oh yes, it's in here somewhere... where was it? Hmm... Hey Mister, why do you want this thing so bad, anyway? It's just a stupid jewel, for gosh sakes. I mean, is it really worth kidnapping a helpless baby for?" she questioned, buying me some time. I hastily walked up behind Cel and gasped, hoping to get his attention away from Malin.
"OH MY!" I exclaimed, looking down at Kin, making sure to cover most of my face and my fur. As planned, Cel turned around, his eyebrows raised.
"What do you WANT?!" he demanded, stepping in front of Kin. I poked my head around him, trying to get a better look at the baby Ogrin.
I grinned. "That is a fine young Ogrin you have there. You see, I have a proposition for you." I tried my best to provide a deep, Sloth-sounding voice, but I probably just sounded really pathetic. "I am currently testing a new Transmogrification Potion, and that Ogrin looks like the perfect test-subject--"
"Sorry, pal. Get lost." Cel turned his back on me, and Malin handed him the fake jewel. I grabbed the baby Quiggle's shoulders and turned him around, growling.
"Listen, buddy. You give me that Ogrin right now or I'll--"
"Hey! Chill out, you freak! Get away from me!" Cel shouted as I shook him back and forth. I grinned as I saw Enzie run up and Kin jump on her back. The Kougra started to sprint away into the crowded streets of Neopia Central.
"NEVER!" I shouted, tilting my head back and throwing my arms up. "MWAHAHAHAHA!" Hey, I'd always wanted to do that.
It wasn't long before people were staring at me, and a huge scary Skeith glared at me, pounding his fist into his hand, looking like he had just found a mighty-fine person to beat up on.
"Just leave me alone!" Cel demanded in his squeak-ish voice. He looked down into his palm at the fake jewel, and his already-huge eyes grew even bigger. "W-what...? This... this... THIS ISN'T THE JEWEL!" He turned around to find that Malin and Kin were gone.
I smirked. "Well, looks like I've got to be going, anyway..." I peered at the Skeith out of the corner of my eye. "Bye now!"
And then I sprinted. As fast as I could. Well, at least as fast as I could while wearing that ridiculous cloak and my fuzzy pink slippers. When I got a fair distance away from the fountain, I tore off my cloak and mask, leaving them on the ground for someone else to find. No, it wasn't littering.
I dashed through the streets, even running into a few people, causing them to drop their groceries. I wanted to stop and help them, but I had to keep running as fast as I could away from Cel. Some people turned their heads and looked at me as I ran down the streets, dodging stray Kadoaties and weaving through people's feet. I took as many twists and turns as I could until I ran into an empty alley. I sighed, leaning my back against the brick wall as I tried to catch my breath.
"SEPRA!" I heard someone shout. I turned, looking around for the person who had said it, and I saw a blue Cybunny at the end of the alley, panting like she'd just run a marathon. She hopped up to me, looking scared. "Where's Enzie?"
"I... don't know," I admitted, hoping she was okay. "Well, we did it, didn't we?"
Malin nodded, smiling in relief. "Let's stay here for a little while until we think it's safe to go back out there. You never know, Cel might still be looking for us."
So we sat in the alley, catching our breath for a few minutes. Finally Malin stood up and motioned for me to follow her. I did, and we went back out into the main streets of Neopia Central, looking around for any sign of Enzie.
"You see her?" I questioned, shielding my eyes from the bright sun as I squinted through the crowds.
I gave up looking and turned to Malin. "Maybe we should just head back to your house. That's probably where she went, anyway."
"You're right," Malin agreed in her optimistic tone. So we started back to the house. I was quite surprised at how many people were out that day walking around. Even in my time period there weren't as many people doing chores or other things. Maybe it was just because people nowadays are too lazy to do anything...
After about ten minutes of walking, we reached Malin's street. I started jogging, eager to know if Enzie and Kin had made it there all right. Malin tried to keep up with me, but she wasn't exactly a track star. A great big grin spread out on my face when I saw Enzie creep around the side of the house and stealthily sneak up to the door. She was about to open it when she turned her head and saw us running down the street.
"Hey!" she shouted, grinning madly. Kin leaped off of her back and waved at me. I got a warm feeling in my heart, as I neared the house. Somehow, through this whole thing, I had managed to get Kin to like me. Maybe when we got home I could start babysitting him again and he wouldn't squeeze a bottle of shampoo in my face or cause any other mischief.
I ran up to Kin and he started to laugh in that extremely cute way babies always giggle. I couldn't resist bending down and giving him a great big hug. Meanwhile, Enzie and Malin were embracing as well.
"Well... we did it, didn't we?" Malin said, hugging Enzie tightly.
The spotted Kougra grinned, showing her sharp white teeth. "Yeah... I guess we did."
And Enzie was smiling happily, thankfully, like I'd never seen her smile before. I grinned, too. It was all over. Now I could go home. I'd done what I had come here to do. It was over.
When we were finally done being all emotional and whatnot, Malin opened the door and we started inside.
"Kin," I called to the baby Ogrin, who was looking up into the sky at something. "Come on!"
Kin didn't move, and kept staring at whatever the heck was in the sky that was so interesting, so I walked out to him and took a look myself. I froze. My heart skipped a beat. I felt sweat dripping from my forehead, running down my face.
"What?" Malin questioned, walking over to Kin and I. Enzie followed her. "What is it, Sepra?"
I pointed up. Malin and Enzie both raised their heads.
Nobody said anything. Flying through the sky was a giant evil Darigan Eyrie, and on its back was a deranged baby Quiggle looking like he needed revenge.
To be continued...