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The Clumsiest Apology Letter Ever Written


by elegon

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In a bright little glade in Meridell country, Illusen watched a young Pteri toddle off to complete her quest. When the Neopet disappeared down the path, the earth faerie turned and retreated to her cozy cabin, hoping to grab a quiet moment of relaxation before the next quester arrived. As she sat nursing a hot cup of borovan, Illusen sifted through the morning post.

     There were a few fan mails she'd set aside for later, a cordial invitation from Queen Fyora to attend the annual Grand Faerie Gala, a rather distressed message from King Skarl asking for advice on various affairs in his kingdom, and... a strange purple envelope with green script.

     Intrigued, Illusen set down her mug and held the envelope closer to read the small text.

     To Illusen the Earth Faerie

     Illusen's Glade, Meridell

     The letter fell from her hand as Illusen suddenly recognized the flowing, spidery penmanship and gasped.

     'Why on Neopia would Jhudora being sending me a letter?' she wondered, studying the envelope warily. After all, the only time the two rival faeries ever acknowledged each other at all was when they were fighting.

     Illusen sat there sipping her borovan and debating whether she should open it. She should just ignore it-that was what Jhudora deserved, in any case. But then again... what could be so important that Jhudora had to write it in a letter? Illusen had known the dark faerie for years, and Jhudora was not the type to express herself on dry paper; what was on Jhudora's mind always made itself known through her actions and words-and rather destructively too, Illusen mused, scowling at the thought.

     Eventually, curiosity won, and Illusen slowly drew the envelope towards herself. Her last thought before breaking the seal was, 'This had better be good.'

     Dear Illusen,

     The earth faerie sputtered mentally at this very un-Jhudora-like greeting. 'Dear Illusen'? Why not 'Pathetically Inferior One' or 'Tree Hugging Fool' or... or... something equally condescending and insulting?

     If you're reading this, then I suppose you've actually opened my letter. Well, of course you have, because how could you possibly be reading if you hadn't opened-but I'm being silly. Of course you'd open it... but you see, I was a tad (just a tad, mind you) worried that you might not want to open it-and consequently not be able to read it... er, that is, that you might not want to read it, and consequently not open it. Because of... well, you know... our disagreements... What I mean to say, really, is that I'm glad you've opened this... and are reading it too.

     In spite of herself, Illusen could not help the amused grin tugging at the corners of her lips at Jhudora's flagrant... eloquence.

     So, you're wondering why I'm writing to you, right? You must be, if you've opened this, and clearly, you are, since you wouldn't be reading if-wait... let's not go there again.

     But in any case, you're wondering. Because I never write to you-or anyone else for that matter. So why am I doing so now?

     Why, indeed? What in the world was making Jhudora so nervous?

     Well, the truth is... the real reason for this letter is...

     At this point the words stopped, followed by several lines that had been thoroughly crossed out in the green ink. Illusen entertained briefly an image of Jhudora biting her nails fretfully as she scribbled out one false start after another, struggling to word her thoughts appropriately. It was almost enough to warrant a giggle. Almost. Her eyes skipped over to next coherent sentence.

     I'm writing to you to talk about our feud. (Illusen's eyes narrowed.) Wait-wait-don't throw this letter away yet! Give me a chance!

     Well, you do recall the incident that started all this, don't you?

     Illusen frowned at the subtle implication that she had forgotten. The feud between the Dark Faerie and Earth Faerie was well known throughout Neopia, but nobody knew the real cause of it all; there were even some insolent souls who dared suggest that Illusen and Jhudora themselves didn't remember. The Earth Faerie snorted. Of course she remembered. How could she ever forget the offense that had instigated a feud that demanded so much of her time and energy?

     Illusen prided herself on her sensibility, her ability to be the "bigger person" and take responsibility for her actions, even if the other party wasn't mature enough to own up. Any feud this serious could only have been started by a terrible, unforgivable wrongdoing, which in this case had been... she wracked her brains... her mind was drawing a blank. Illusen looked back to the letter. A terrible, unforgivable wrongdoing, such as...

     The time when I thought you stole my evil fluffy Cybunny slippers and dipped them in the Rainbow Fountain and painted them pink. Ms. Fluffybuns and Ms. Fuzzybuns were never the same again. If you recall, Ms. Fluffybuns was the right slipper, and Ms. Fuzzybuns the left-or was Ms. Fluffybuns the left and Ms. Fuzzybuns the right?

     Illusen felt her cheeks redden. Ah... Fuzzybuns and Fluffybuns. Yes, yes, the slippers incident was what started it all... but it was far more complicated than that. Of course it was! Well, to begin with, they were a rather nice pair of slippers, of a most luxuriant purple color with each slipper shaped to the likeness of an evil Cybunny with little fangs and red eyes, and no doubt kept young Jhudora's feet warm on cold Faerieland nights. Naturally, Jhudora would be upset that they'd been ruined. Of course, that didn't excuse her for throwing the blame on Illusen, who had, only a few days earlier, casually commented Jhudora would look nice in pink. Illusen huffed. Of course she'd been rightfully angry with Jhudora for the false accusation. Things had escalated from there, when Jhudora retaliated by kidnapping her Faerie Queen Doll and determined to ransom it for replacement slippers, or at least until Illusen confessed.

     The memories of all Jhudora's little slights and crimes against her were all coming back now. It made the earth faerie's blood boil just thinking about it. She glared down furiously at the letter. If Jhudora had written just to pick open old wounds...

     That was the beginning of our disagreements, you know. I'd almost forgotten-not because it was too trivial of a thing to remember-goodness, no. It was just such a long time ago. So why am I bringing it up now?

     The other day, Baelia came up to me-and that in itself in strange, you know.

     Illusen arched an eyebrow. That certainly was unusual. Ever since she had fallen, Baelia the grey faerie avoided contact with almost everyone. Jhudora's tone was more confident now, and her writing sloppier, as if she was in a hurry to say something important.

     What was even stranger was that she started babbling about slippers and fountains and you. It took me several moments before I realized what she was going on about, and even longer before I realized that she was trying to apologize for something.

     The thing is... she confessed. Confessed to "borrowing" my slippers without my knowledge and confessed to being too afraid to tell me what she'd done when she accidentally dropped them in the Rainbow Fountain.

     Shocking, isn't it?

     Illusen stared. Baelia? Baelia had been the thief, while she, Illusen, had received all of Jhudora's spite and anger? And yet... it made sense. Before Baelia had lost her wings, and with it, all her powers and beauty, she had been quite vain, and selfish. Stealing someone's possession and refusing to take responsibility afterwards sounded very much like something she would have done.

     You know what this means, don't you?

     And Illusen did. All those years of hatred, animosity, acts of vengeance... it had all been for nothing, she realized with a terrible sinking feeling in her stomach.

     I admit I was a little hasty when I... well... you know... jumping to conclusions... stealing your Faerie Queen Doll... Er... you know the kind of thing I'm trying to say, don't you?

     Well, the one thing I wrote this entire letter to say is... is... (Gah, this shouldn't be so hard!)... I'm sorry.

     And don't you dare tell a soul I said that. I must keep up my ruthless, evil image, you understand.

     She had to smile, she really did. Could she find it in herself to forgive Jhudora, after all this time?

     I realize this letter may not have changed what you think of me. You may be hating me as much as ever, gloating that I was wrong all along, or vowing that you still will never tolerate me.

     You don't have to reply to this, but as you know, Fyora's Grand Faerie Gala is next weekend. I know you're invited, and as surprising as it is, I was too. If there's the slightest chance that you'd want to make up... I'll be there.

     Now I'm going to send this before I lose my nerve and scrap it all.

     Almost fond regards, from the bottom of my black, stony, nonexistent heart,

     -Jhudora

     P.S. If you dare breathe a word of the contents of this letter to anyone else... not that I'm threatening you, of course. But this is all between the two of us, all right?

     Illusen's hand trembled as she reached for a sheet of paper and worded her reply:

     Dear Jhudora...

     I'll be at the Gala. We have a lot of lost time to make up for...

     -Illusen

     P.S. All right, I'll keep that letter secret... as long as you never let anyone know something this petty came between us.

The End

 
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