Terror Mountain - in Trouble!: Part Three
The four intrepid pets set off. Thor bounced ahead, happier now he had friends behind him. The others followed the yellow Chia, talking cheerfully among themselves. Jatalle was just happy that someone else seemed to have an idea for once, that was more than a pointless number. Vilmori was relieved because his mood depended on that of his best friend, and she’d finally calmed down a bit. The green Lupe wagged his tail and strode alongside the island Aisha as she skipped along. Slightly behind came Wroulf, panting a little. The journey was taking its toll on his little legs, and the baby Lupe was tired. He was less enthusiastic than the others about the new turn of events and would have preferred to stay at the Neolodge with their owner. His brother and sister seemed happy enough to follow the Chia, but Wroulf just wanted it all over.
Finally they reached Moltara, and stopped for a break.
“Great, now what?” Jatalle asked Thor. He looked excited.
“Well, after all the floods on Terror Mountain, I went up there to see what was going on. I found this fire Blumaroo with some silly story about petpets-”
“We did that as well!” said Jatalle.
“Great! Anyway, he said to come to Moltara and find a pink Elephante, who knows who is behind all this! I can’t see it being too difficult – how hard can it be to find something brightly coloured in Moltara?”
“Not very!” agreed Jatalle. She motioned to her brothers and the two Lupes came forward. “Shall we get started?”
“Let’s split up, we’ll cover more ground that way,” agreed Thor, and the pets set off. They all waved to each other and headed in different directions, looking for the elusive Elephante.
Half an hour later they were still fighting their way through the rocks, flicking worms off their paws as they went. But there was no sign. Jatalle decided it was time for a snack, and yelled for everyone to meet by the pool.
But... “Where’s Thor?” she suddenly noticed, once Vilmori and Wroulf had arrived, looking tired. They shouted his name, and even had a quick peek past the magma pool guard, in case he’d gone for a swim, but there was no sign of the little Chia. They began to get worried. Night began to approach and still no Thor. Now Jatalle was split – she was worried about Thor, but their owner would be getting worried about them. Looking at Wroulf, who was almost asleep, she decided that she would have to make a choice. She went to the Guard once more, and asked him to look out for their friend. Then she gathered up her brothers and they set off for the Neolodge.
Their owner was panicking when they arrived, and shouted angrily for ten minutes straight before any of them could get a word in edgeways. Wroulf went off to bed, and Jatalle and Vilmori stayed to tell the story. They were exhausted, but worried about Thor and determined that their owner should help. But just then a knock came at the door. Their owner opened it to find an envelope.
“Neomail from Thor!” she announced, and read it. “He’s safe, says he’s sorry he missed you, he wandered into a cave and got a bit lost. Lots of glowing red rock, or something. Oh, and he’d like to meet you tomorrow at the Money Tree!”
“Did he find a pink Elephante?” asked Jatalle, sleepily. Her owner gave her a bemused look, then ushered them both to bed, where they fell straight to sleep.
The next morning, Jatalle woke as sunlight streamed through the window. It was late morning and Wroulf and Vilmori had already got up. She hated being last one awake, so dressed quickly and ran into the dining room, where her family were eating breakfast. She remembered about Thor’s note last night.
Jatalle grinned, and ate as fast as she could, watched by an amused Vilmori. “Come on, Vil, Wroulf, let’s see what’s happening!” she cried, already halfway out the door. They smiled and followed her.
Thor was standing by the Money Tree, bouncing on the spot in excitement.
“I found him! The Elephante! I went back early this morning and he told me everything!”
“So, who’s behind the whole thing? Do you know? Can we stop the Blumaroo melting our mountain?” asked Jatalle.
Just then, the Blumaroo himself appeared in the distance, walking towards them, a large flock of fire petpets spread out in front of him. As he came nearer, he yelled to Thor, “Thanks, mate! Glad you cleared that up for me,” and waved as he walked past.
Jatalle looked at him open-mouthed in amazement. “You got him to move? Thor, you just saved Terror Mountain! Now we can all go home.”
Thor looked modest and mumbled a shy response. Suddenly Jatalle realized “Oh no! You don’t have a home anymore. You were pounded. I’m so sorry... I can’t believe she didn’t want you anymore; you’re a hero!”
Thor grinned nervously, and just shook his head. He looked as though he was biting back tears. Jatalle turned to Vilmori and had a quick conversation. Wroulf was standing a little way away, appearing to study a leaf on the tree with great intensity.
“Thor, we’ve talked about this a bit, and well, we’d be honoured if you would join our family,” Jatalle offered, Vilmori nodding enthusiastically.
Wroulf started. Thor looked ecstatic, and opened his mouth.
“I – ” he began, but was cut off by Wroulf. He had been waiting for ages for Jatalle to say something, but was shocked by what came out of her mouth. The Aisha was the oldest, normally completely on the ball and observant. He had tried to give her the opportunity, but she’d obviously missed it and time was running out.
“No!” he cried, to the shocked and then outraged Jatalle. She was amazed that her little brother would speak out so rudely. But Vilmori was a bit more easily swayed, and wanted to hear what Wroulf had to say.
“He’s behind it all! I thought you knew! I thought you were planning a big unveiling at the end like in those stories that you read, Jatalle. But he took you both in! It was him who made the Blumaroo go up onto Terror Mountain and melt it, he promised him NP – and now you’re offering him a place in our family.”
Jatalle was dumbstruck. She trusted the Chia, but this was her brother! Who was right? Thor looked confused and innocent. She tried to reason things out. “Wroulf... how do you know all this?”
“It’s obvious!” the little Lupe said, frustrated. “He led us on a wild goose chase to Moltara while he paid the Blumaroo and saved the day. You want proof? Just ask him what his real name is, his full one.”
But just then another figure ran into sight, calling out. It was Thor’s old owner. “Fortitoo! Fortitoo! There you are! I’ve been looking for you all over.”
Wroulf grinned; Jatalle looked shocked. “Fortitoo? That’s a strange name.”
His owner was now fussing over a very reluctant Chia “Oh? I wanted a mix between fortitude and fortuitous; that’s how I came up with it.”
“Then... you never pounded him?” asked Jatalle.
His owner looked shocked. “Pound Fortitoo? Never!” Thor scrambled away and looked at Jatalle.
“You... destroyed our house and half of Terror Mountain,” she stated, still stunned. “Why?”
“Because I heard my owner say that your owner had a Fountain Faerie Quest. I thought that if I was a hero, you’d adopt me and I could be a pea Chia at last – which would be well worth the neopoints I paid the Blumaroo!”
Jatalle didn’t know what to think. Wroulf was looking triumphant, and she went over and hugged her little brother. He’d saved them from a terrible mistake, bringing in a new member of the family who was altogether too dangerous. She smiled at Vilmori, and they turned away from the small sad-looking Chia, securely watched by his owner. The three siblings headed back to the Neolodge together.
Three months later the family was back in their house securely on top of Terror Mountain. Once the Blumaroo had taken the petpets away, it had rapidly frozen back to normal, and a quick trip down to the Neohome Superstore had restored everything damaged. They were all eating dinner together at the table when Vilmori spoke up.
“Anyone heard about Thor recently?” he asked, curiously.
Jatalle grinned. “Last I heard, he begged his owner to zap him, in the hope of turning into a pea. She eventually did, and now he’s a mutant JubJub. He hasn’t quite got used to the tentacles; he trips over them a lot!” They all laughed.
She looked at Wroulf. She’d apologized many times over for not believing him at first, and for being so taken in, but he’d brushed them all off graciously. Still, she had a new respect for the little Lupe, and often asked his opinion now. He wasn’t the baby she used to think of him as, but spoke a lot of common sense.
Vilmori beamed. As long as his siblings were happy, he was. They all tucked into their omelette as night fell once again.