The most fantastic thing in the universe! Circulation: 194,151,536 Issue: 742 | 29th day of Swimming, Y18
Home | Archives Articles | Editorial | Short Stories | Comics | New Series | Continued Series

The Missing Puzzle Piece

by redlittlebluebird


      Vladdee the red Shoyru was having the most fantastic day ever! Today, completely out of the blue, his owner decided to give him a gift. This in and of itself is cause for celebration, but when he opened the wrapping paper to see what was inside, he became speechless.

      It was a puzzle! Vladdee absolutely loves puzzles!

      But this puzzle was better than any other puzzle that Vladdee had ever received. This was a super duper special puzzle because it was a Red Shoyru Puzzle! And Vladdee was a red Shoyru!

      Vladdee was so excited that he got started on his new puzzle right away. He made himself comfortable in the middle of the rug in his room and got to work.

      Hours passed by as Vladdee continued to work. He wouldn’t stop for anything until he was done. He even refused to join his family for dinner when his sister came to get him. He was just too determined to complete his self-appointed task to stop.

      He got closer and closer to the end. Piece after piece were being placed now, at a rapid speed.

      Five pieces left. Now only four. Three. Two!

      Wait a minute. That’s not right.

      There was a piece missing! Oh, it was horrible! This was definitely NOT the most fantastic day ever, it was the most dreadful day ever!

      His favorite puzzle was missing a piece right in the middle in a most obvious spot. It was ruined, never to be completed! What was he supposed to do now?

      He freaked out for another minute before he was able to calm down and think rationally again.

      Once Vladdee was able to think straight once more, he quickly was able to form a plan. The solution was actually rather simple. He would just have to find the missing piece.

      He started by searching his work area. He looked under the box lids that the puzzle came in.

      No piece there.

      Next he looked under the rug he had been working on top of.

      Nope, not there either.

      After that, he looked to see if it happened to have rolled underneath the bed.

      Well, he did find Blue Evil Fuzzle he had hid under there a while back because it scared him. However, the missing puzzle piece was nowhere in sight.

      He searched his entire room looking for the elusive puzzle piece. It just wasn’t there! It was as if the puzzle piece had decided to vanish into thin air!

      Vladdee was not only upset, but also now a little bit confused. He hadn’t opened the box until he was sitting on his puzzle making rug in his room. It had to there somewhere.

      All of a sudden, Vladdee was hit with an awful thought. What if the piece was never there in the first place? What if the piece never made it into the box when it was being packed up at the factory before being shipped out to the store?

      The thought almost made Vladdee cry. He needed to complete his Red Shoyru Puzzle. He would never be able to proudly display his most favorite masterpiece while it was incomplete. That would just be shameful!

      He needed a new plan. Take a new course of action.

      He thought long and hard about what to do. He jumped up from his spot on the floor and yelled, “I‘ve got it! I know what I need to do!”

      Vladdee grabbed his puzzle box and made his way out of his room. He passed by the kitchen on his way out, ignoring his owner and siblings as they ate omelettes. He ran through the front door and started his way down the street as his family called out after him, asking where he was going.

      He had to keep going and ignore them though. He was on a mission now.

      He made his way into town and finally arrived at his destination, the Toy Shop. He walked inside and made his way to the customer service desk. The nice Lupe Shopkeeper was working the desk and smiled as he approached.

      “What can I help you with today?” she asked.

      “My owner just bought me this puzzle and there was a piece missing. I would like to get a new one,” Vladdee replied.

      “Sure,” the shopkeeper said. “We can just make an exchange and you can bring a new puzzle home.”

      Vladdee shook his head. “I don’t need the whole puzzle though. I already have the entire thing complete. I just need the piece that is missing.”

      The shopkeepers smile faded from her face. “Oh, I’m sorry, but I can’t allow you to open a brand new puzzle and only take one piece.”

      “Why? You were going to except my puzzle with a missing piece, weren’t you?”

      “Well, because your puzzle would have been a return, I would have sent the puzzle back to the factory for a refund. But that doesn’t mean that I can take a new product off the shelf for you to go through. It’s against our policy.”

      Vladdee tapped his chin as he thought about what to do next. After a minute he asked, “And where is this factory located?”

      Two minutes later, Vladdee was exiting the shop with the address and directions to his new destination, the factory. If the shopkeeper at the Toy Shop couldn’t help him, maybe he would have better luck at the factory in which the puzzle was made.

      He arrived at the factory and after waiting for a few minutes, was finally allowed to talk to someone in charge. The factory manager seemed like a very kind and reasonable neopet. Hopefully he would be able to help.

      Unfortunately, the manager was unable to do much more for Vladdee than the Toy Shop’s shopkeeper.

      “All of our puzzles are double and triple checked after they are made to make sure there are no missing pieces. There is less than a one percent change that your missing piece did not make it into the box. I am sorry, but I cannot do any more to help you.”

      Vladdee left the factory and began to head home. He kicked at the rocks that littered the sidewalk and sighed in defeat.

      When he finally arrived back home, he went straight to his room to lie face down on his bed.

      After a moment or two, he heard the door to his room open and looked up to see his sister standing in the doorway.

      “I’m sorry,” his sister, Sweetiepeatie, said.

      “Why are you sorry?” Vladdee asked. What had his little sister done? He couldn’t remember the two of them fighting recently so he was confused.

      “It’s my fault about your puzzle,” the pea chia explained in a soft voice.

      “What? How?” Vladdee asked as he sat up to look at her better.

      “I was upset because you wouldn’t pay any attention to me today. When I came to get you for dinner and you ignored me I got mad. I was the one who stole the last puzzle piece.” Sweetiepeatie stepped further into the room and brought her arm from behind her back to reveal…

      The missing puzzle piece!

      “You had it!” Vladdee exclaimed. “It was here the whole time! Give it here!”

      Vladdee took the puzzle piece from his sister and immediately placed in the final hole of the puzzle. He stood back and looked at it in awe before turning back around to look at his sister once more.

      Sweetiepeatie looked as if she was about to cry. She thought that her brother was mad at her for fooling him and making him upset.

      “I’m sorry too,” Vladdee said. Sweetiepeatie looked up through watery eyes and shot him a questioning look. “I shouldn’t have ignored you and everyone today. So I’m sorry. Can you forgive me?”

      Sweetiepeatie smiled and wiped her tears from her eyes. “I can forgive you as long as you can forgive me.”

      “It’s a deal then.”

      The two neopets hugged and then made their way out of the room and into the kitchen to finish dinner. They were having omelettes after all.

      The End.

Search the Neopian Times

Great stories!


Origins of the Hidden Tower's Antiquities
When you gaze upon the vast array of antiquities, do you ever wonder how the Queen of Faerieland came to possess such rarities? I certainly felt the begging curiosity of how each item came to be.

Also by earthlingdreamz

by rebourne_


Who is the most loved in Neopia?

by royal_real


The Lab Ray Fear
Was it something I said?

by goldensif


Customisation Time!
A freshly-painted Techo walks by...

by loislanny

Submit your stories, articles, and comics using the new submission form.