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DeSoni's Potion Predicament: Part One


by appaloosa500

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"You sure bout this, Soni?" a tall red Ruki asked a diminutive yellow Aisha.

     "Come off it, Rocky ol' pal. The science is perfect. Besides, I've yet to fail when it comes to simple chemistry."

     The two boys were sitting on the floor of Soni's (better known as DeSoni's) bedroom. Scattered around the tiny Aisha were potion bottles and chemical beakers.

     "Yeah," commented the Ruki, _Rickster_Rocker_, not sounding quite sure of himself. "But shouldn't we get, you know, a lab? Like, what about Khargana's in the basement?"

     DeSoni's ears, all four of them, stood straight upright in annoyance. "Look, Rocky, you want this to be a secret or not? By Fyora's crown, Khargana's a detective! And…well…" He blushed a bit and continued, "She fingerprinted me when Kay had this room built for me."

     The red Ruki chuckled nervously and started fiddling with some empty beakers. Eventually he spoke up again, this time almost whispering. "Do you think this is a good idea?"

     DeSoni's eyes rolled. "Of course I do! It's my plan, after all. And it's perfect."

     With a tiny yellow paw, the Aisha lifted the completed concoction he'd been working on. Nonchalantly, he placed one paw on top and shook it so it bubbled, then took his paw off.

     "Here ya go, buddy," he said, handing it to Rocky.

     Nervously, the Ruki took the vial. Staring at it with huge eyes, he mumbled. "What if something goes wrong?"

     "Don't worry so much," DeSoni sighed, standing up and dusting off his torn jeans. Strangely, he was actually dressed in human-style clothes: an old stained T-shirt and aforementioned ripped denim jeans. The little Aisha stretched and continued, "I need to know if this potion works. The way it's formulated, the project will be either a complete success or an utter failure. At worst, you'll think it tastes like overly fermented Tigersquash juice."

     Rocky took a deep breath. "Okay, but only because you're my pal. And you begged me earlier on bended knee." He chuckled, closed his giant eyes, and downed the whole thing before he could talk himself out of it.

     Nothing happened. "Well," grumbled DeSoni, flopping back on his bed. "This complicates things, but it is something of a relief… But however will I-"

     Suddenly Rocky reeled on his four legs and grabbed his head. His antennae wheeled wildly in circles, as if he were dizzy or something. "Ugh," the Ruki groaned, falling to his four knees, still squeezing his head.

     "ROCKY!" yelped DeSoni, leaping up, off his bed, and over to his friend.

     "My…ugh… my head…" groaned Rocky, beginning to shake from the pain and resulting weakness.

     "But-but-I'm sure I didn't overestimate the Alien to Neopian quotient! It should be working just fine!!"

     The little Aisha reached under his friend and, with much huffing and straining, managed to heave his lanky friend onto the bed. Somewhere along the line, the Ruki fainted.

     ******

     Rocky woke about half an hour later to his small friend's constant mumbling.

     "I'm positive my equations were accurate. I didn't skip any steps… the faerie potion level was consistent throughout… Oh, maybe I should have used a lab! But that would mean explaining-"

     Weakly, the Ruki shoved himself upright, ignoring his headache as best he could. "DeSoni?"

     The little yellow Aisha leaped a foot and jumped around. "Rocky! Thank Illusen's berries that you're alright!"

     "Well," mumbled Rocky, carefully sitting up, "I don't know about that. I feel really weird…" He turned so his four legs were on the ground, though he still sat on the bed. (He was extremely tall, especially next to our vertically challenged DeSoni.) "Not really bad, but most definitely weird."

     DeSoni looked a little troubled. He agitatedly wiped his paws on his shabby T-shirt. "The unusual, slightly awkward feeling is to be expected. It's that headache and the subsequent unconsciousness that were completely inconsistent with my research. I hope it doesn't signify a side-effect!"

     "What?!" Rocky stood upright, his head suddenly clear. "I thought you said nothing could go wrong!!"

     "And nothing should've! I've been over everything! There isn't a single flaw or mishap! Everything should've gone perfectly!"

     The two were silent for a minute before they started talking again.

     Rocky spoke first. "Do you think it worked?"

     DeSoni looked him over much as a medical doctor would, then nodded. "You aren't experiencing any allergic reactions, and you seem to have recovered from whatever problem there was."

     The red Ruki looked himself over and nodded. "Let's go through those tests."

     The tiny yellow Aisha laughed. "Gotcha, big guy!" And they left the room.

     ******

     Soon the two were in DeSoni's Fix-It Shop. It was very crowded, not with customers, but with worktables and tools and various repaired and broken items. Everywhere was packed, except behind the counter, where DeSoni and Rocky had swept everything to the side.

     DeSoni climbed onto the counter where he'd normally lounge during 'open' hours and sat, back paws swinging over the edge. "Test one," he said, "Super-strength."

     Rocky nodded, looking determined.

     "That weighs 350 pounds," said the tiny Aisha, pointing to a huge metal desk with a cracked stone top. "I had to hire a couple of Grarrls to get it in here, and let me tell you, THEY had a tough time. If the potion worked, however, it should be a piece of cake."

     "Okay, DeSoni," said Rocky. The Ruki stepped over to the desk, braced his legs, and gripped the front. He didn't even have to heave, as the entire desk lifted with barely any effort on Rocky's part. His eyes widened in surprise as he let go with one claw-like hand and still managed to hoist the desk up and down with ease.

     DeSoni smiled at his buddy's amazement. "Next, Super-speed! You should be able to circle this room at least 20-"

     "Did it!" laughed Rocky, now standing in a slightly different place.

     "What?!" DeSoni rubbed his eyes as if they had something in them.

     "Circled the room 20 times. I did it!"

     DeSoni shook his head in astonishment. "Things seem much slower as equations on paper. I've got to watch you more closely. I didn't even see a blur!"

     Rocky chuckled and leaned casually against a worktable. "I'm getting to like this 'super' idea!"

     DeSoni chuckled. "Okay, test three. Super-vision. Tell me the words on that wall. They're written microscopic size-I actually had to use a computerized micro-pen I've been working on for Nigel the Chia. To even the sharpest-eyed normal Neopet they'd appear to be specks of dust."

     Rocky smiled as his eyes flickered over the spot, and then he read the message aloud. "Thanks, Rocky, for doing this for me." He looked over to his short friend. "You're quite welcome, little guy."

     "Hey, hey! Ease off the 'little' thing! I've been technically full grown for five Neopian years now. Anyway, test four is for Super-hearing. This one was a little tricky since many Neopets, such as Khargana and myself, can already hear so-called 'supersonic' Petpet whistles and whatnot, so I went a step further. Whispers are screams next to this baby." DeSoni patted a small black box on the counter next to him. "Say hello to ultrasonic! Tell me what you hear." He flicked a switch.

     Rocky frowned and closed his eyes as if concentrating really hard. He began: "Mission location of Derek Sonix is at a standstill. Whether potion XG12C is or is not in his possession is unknown. I repeat-"

     DeSoni's earstalks drooped in their signature depressed manner, and he quickly flicked the switch off. "Had no idea that was on," he mumbled apologetically.

     Glancing up and seeing Rocky's inquiring look he explained. "Alien Aisha receiver box. No transmitter, so it can't be located. Only their technology is advanced enough to travel by ultrawave."

     "Oh," Rocky licked his lips ashamedly, "your past." He looked downward, embarrassed. "I forgot. I know you hate talking about it, but does this message mean-"

     DeSoni nodded once. "Yep. The potion I gave you was coded XG12C in its research stage." He shrugged. "You heard the message-they want it back."

     Rocky yanked a folding chair off from where it was leaning against the wall and flipped it open. Sighing, he relaxed into it and looked toward his little friend. "It's so weird. You know, thinking of you as an Alien Aisha and all."

     Quickly, DeSoni looked up and shook his head negatively. "Don't, please. Think of me as a normal Neopian Aisha. I left my past behind, or at least I've tried to."

     Rocky looked over towards the receiver box. "But, the potion. What of it? You already told me something to the point of what it is and why it was made, but why'd you take it? And why did you need me?"

     The little Aisha-well, really Alien Aisha, but for simplicity's sake we'll just refer to him as an Aisha for now-began nervously fidgeting and couldn't seem to answer the question. Really, it was a much more involved question then it sounded, and DeSoni needed time to straighten out how to answer.

     Suddenly, DeSoni jumped down from the counter and dashed to a worktable cluttered with broken lamps. He snatched a few necessary tools and equipment from under the table and set to work, expertly filling cracks, gluing back in chipped or broken pieces, and stitching tears in the fabric shades. Now that his hands were occupied doing something, it was easier for him to explain.

     Eyes focused and fingers (or, as you technically minded readers might refer to them as: toes) flying, he began. "I'm sorry, Rocky. I didn't tell you anywhere near the whole story. I know how you don't like to get involved."

     Rocky stared. Even though he knew his friend spoke fact, the words seemed odd coming out of such an open-minded and honest person's mouth.

     DeSoni continued. "First, you have to remember I was in the inner espionage and research circle. I was already planning to abandon them when they assigned me to make a formula that would grant the drinker so-called 'superpowers'. I was supplied any ingredient, no matter how expensive or obscure, and all the resources I could possibly ask for. I couldn't refuse or it'd arouse suspicion, and they were already getting slightly wary of my unprejudiced views of Neopians. I… I had no excuse not to go along and create their potion."

     He looked up, pausing in his rapid work with his paws. A haunted, guilty look came over his slightly dazed looking face. "It's so hard to believe. Sloth's uprising so long ago… it was all my fault. I didn't even realize for months that all those problems were my fault."

     Rocky shook his head. "No way. How could it be your fault? Sloth's uprising? The guy's an evil megalomaniac tyrant!"

     DeSoni shook his head at his friend's lack of comprehension. He went back to the lamps, as if desperate to not fully concentrate on the matter. "Ever wonder how Sloth made those poor Grundos so huge and gave all those mutants super-strength?"

     "I thought the ol' doc was a genius."

     "Technologically, yes. Physiologically, biologically, and chemically? No way. Even my jealous colleagues admitted only I could have pulled it off, though I believe they said that to increase my obvious shame at the time. Dr. Frank Sloth bought everything from the Alien Aisha Military."

     The yellow Aisha shook his head, as if trying to shake some horrible distant memories from his thoughts but not succeeding. He continued to work feverishly on the lamps. "That was an incomplete formula. It was only supposed to be used for research purposes, or so they told me. It…" His paws suddenly stopped working and he squeezed his eyes, trying desperately not to cry like a little kitten.

     "You okay, pal?"

     DeSoni angrily slammed his paws on the table, no longer able to keep his feelings in check. For the first time ever, Rocky saw his calm, easygoing friend's eyes blaze with the intensity of the emotions close to overwhelming him.

     "Rocky! Listen to me! It damaged their brains! A few became geniuses, which wasn't so bad, but the vast majority became giant, lumbering idiots! Calling them half-wits would be a compliment!! And it was all my fault! All those brilliant, absolutely brilliant, engineers and scientists of that era, mutated into worthless… nothings! I couldn't let my potion be used for that again. I couldn't. It was absolutely the last straw. I couldn't put up with the Alien Aishas anymore. I wanted nothing to do with them, and I didn't want my potion to have anything to do with them either! I stole it. I stole it and ran away, and I destroyed all my months of research so they'd NEVER be able to replicate the formula!!"

     Rocky's big eyes stared, not on purpose, but just out of shock. He'd had no idea his best friend had such a weight on his shoulders. He'd known DeSoni was really smart, genius in fact, and used to be a top agent for the Alien Aishas, but not about the enormous amount of guilt the little guy was carrying.

     DeSoni was still raving, not seeming to notice anyone, so concentrated he was on his past. "But they wouldn't let me be! They came after me! I appealed to Fyora herself, on bended knee, for protection! I pleaded with her, told her my whole life story! She granted it, even set up an agency to protect me and others in similar positions as my own, but it wasn't enough! Before the faeries assigned me to Kay and Khargana as an adoptive family, they'd found me. The big ol' lousy Buzz that kidnapped me thought it was my mechanical skills they wanted! He actually thought they'd be honest with HIM!! Of course that's not why they really wanted me back, at least not the true reason! I knew better! They wanted XG12C. They wanted the potion, and I would've just been a nice bonus!"

     Finally he halted, and suddenly seemed to come out of his half-daze enough to notice Rocky again. "Do we have any Neocola in here?"

     "Yeah, I'll grab you a can. Keep going."

     DeSoni leaned heavily on the table, face on paws with his eyes shut tight as the tall red Ruki found the cans of soda, popped two open, and handed him one. He took a deep gulp and continued, though his heart seemed to have left the rant and the rest of the story was in a monotone. "I adapted the potion to work only on Neopets from way back, even in the research stage, which is undoubtedly why they sold it to Sloth. But, I hadn't counted on any psychological effects. It was incredibly foolish of me to underestimate my own kind. I didn't think the concoction was anything more then a curiosity, and I never dreamed they'd use it without my okay."

     "Why the sudden resurrection of the project?" quietly asked Rocky.

     The ex-Alien Aisha agent sighed and gestured tiredly at the receiver. "You heard the transmission. What do you think? I don't know how, but they're tracing me. And they'll find me. They'll stick away from Khargana, with her reputation in all those tough-guy hangouts, but she can't baby-sit me. And they know I wouldn't be able to beg my big sis for such drastic help anyway. I needed to know if my potion could work correctly before I could create any plans."

     The lanky red Ruki stood and began pacing. "This is all crazy! A superpower potion. Alien Aishas. My best friend's secret past." He shook his head, then sighed, giving in to the inevitable. Nothing could really be helped to change the past anyway. "Okay, one more thing-I know you well enough to know you aren't a coward. So why'd you use me? Wouldn't it be incredibly easier to simply test the potion on yourself? Just adapt it so it'd work on yourself, an Alien Aisha, while you're at it?"

     DeSoni, surprisingly, flushed. "Umm, remember that incredibly embarrassing mess I told you about, involving that last time the Alien Aishas found me?"

     "The magic-invincibility goop?"

     "Yeah, well, the effects of that junk have spread more then they should've. I think it's because the paint was exposed to air as I fixed the container, or perhaps because I actually did the repairs on that stupid ray bare-pawed, either way, any faerie potion will not work on me. Not even Healing Potions, as I found out last time I burned myself when fixing someone's lava lamp. I still can't believe they actually used real lava, though the 'Made in Tyrannia' label should've hinted me."

     "DeSoni!! Get to the point!"

     "Nothing remotely faerie related will have any effect on me. Handy if a rogue faerie goes berserk, not in day-to-day life. Since some of the main core potions in my concoction contain faerie magic or were created using faerie powers, it would not have the desired effect on me. Frankly, I have no idea what it'd do to me, and I'm too wary to find out."

     Rocky thought for a second, then nodded, remembering all the empty faerie potion bottles he'd seen in DeSoni's room. "Anything you're leaving out?"

     "I have a bad feeling about that problem you had when you first took the potion."

     Rocky's eyes went wide in alarm. "You better not mean my brain's gonna dissolve or anything!"

     DeSoni shook his head. "No, nothing like that. Just, it was supposed to be temporary. But, I think the migraine and subsequent unconsciousness indicate a fusion between-"

     "In Neopian Standard, please."

     "Okay, I think your superpowers are permanent." DeSoni bit his lip anxiously.

     Rocky relaxed. "Oh, that's not so bad. I can live with heightened senses and whatnot."

     "You don't understand the Alien Aisha mentality at all!!" shouted DeSoni, standing from his chair and glaring up at his tall friend. "They WILL come after you if they find out what I've done! If they don't try to force you to work for them, or the term 'slave' might be a better word there, they WILL use you as either an experiment or a Neopian hostage! Maybe even both or all of the above!!"

     Rocky tensed again and sat back down in his folding chair. "Aw, Soni, I was just feeling better about things. So what do I do?"

     "Just don't show off!"

     The red Ruki leaned back and rested his head on his arms. "To whom would I? I'm the loner, remember? You're the only friend I've got, and I'm certainly not showing off to all those sisters of mine!"

     (To those of you familiar with my stories, _Rickster_Rocker_ is the latest of horse_computer's family. His three sisters are Adriana_Flyer, a red Uni; Stand_Off, a blue Zafara; and CarissaOfire, a blue Shoyru.)

     The little yellow Alien Aisha that appeared exactly as a tiny yellow Neopian Aisha smiled for the first time since his whole Alien Aisha rant had begun. "Okay, but just be careful."

     "Gotcha."

     "And if any further, well, things happen, let me know."

     Rocky eyed his friend warily before he nodded assent. "So what do we do now?"

     DeSoni chuckled and gestured to the door. "Enough pessimism. Let's go see what those new powers of yours can really do. I've got a few basic measuring gadgets, and there really isn't enough room despite us sweeping everything to the side, so let's go! How's the forest sound?"

     "Great! I know just the clearing! Let's go!"

     ******

Alien Aisha Secret Outpost, Code Name: Mission Post 14G5

     "Sir! I've a positive reading on radar!" shouted a uniformed blue Alien Aisha watching a black screen with green gridlines.

     "Continue, rookie!" barked Commander Galba.

     "It very nearly matches XG12C's signature, but it's moving…"

     Commander Galba, a giant red Alien Aisha probably close to Rocky's height, smiled wickedly. "Excellent. I would say that traitor Derek Sonix has tested his formula after adapting it, probably trying to throw us off the scent."

     The rookie blinked, not quite understanding what was going on.

     Commander Galba signaled to two lieutenants to follow him and placed a third in charge until he got back.

     As the threesome stepped onto the circular platform that would ascend to the below surface exit, the commander chuckled.

     "We'll see if that midget genius gets away this time! Personally," he pulled a dangerous looking weapon resembling a cross between a frost cannon and a lightning gun from a holster at his right hip, "I doubt it."

To be continued...

Author's Note: Thanks to all you DeSoni fans who wrote me asking for more! I couldn't have done it without you! Could you all do me a HUGE favor and tell me what you think of my new characters? I don't even care if you hate them, just drop me a line! Thanks!

 
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