Exiuz, a Checkered Mynci, had always dreamed of becoming an investigator for lost petpets, but it wasn’t in his plans to become one in the Haunted Woods. But regardless of how he felt about being transferred from the serene Mystery Island to the creepiest place imaginable, he had to set those feelings aside and focus his mind on the matter at hand. A green Snorkle by the name Valerie was lost somewhere in the Haunted Woods, and Exiuz had to find her. He remembered how distraught Valerie’s owner was, and he thought back to the conversation while he roamed around the Deserted Fairground as he searched through every nook and cranny.
“I had always wanted a petpet,” Alisha, the Halloween Lenny, explained while she attempted not to cry. “Although I originally wanted a spooky petpet, I quickly settled for the Green Snorkle who ran over to me and snorted happily as soon as I walked into the petpet shop. I decided to name her Valerie, and we quickly became best friends. She loved to play Fetch the Kass and she even knew how to play Wingoball! But now she’s lost and I’m not sure if I’ll ever get her back.”
“Where exactly did you lose her?” Exiuz looked around the Haunted Woods and pondered at how difficult it would be to find Valerie. He then saw the Brain Tree off in the distance, and Exiuz shuddered as he noticed the scary red eyes of the tree, and he felt even worse as he noticed that the brain of the tree seemed to be moving or perhaps throbbing, but Exiuz couldn’t tell from that far away.
“Right over there,” Alisha pointed.
Exiuz gulped as he noticed that Alisha was pointing towards The Brain Tree, just as he feared.
“And what resulted in her running away?” Exiuz was curious.
“A Ghost Meowclops ran towards her and scared her, so Valerie ran away as quickly as she could,” Alisha responded.
“I would think that she would be used to creepy petpets and ghosts considering Valerie’s home is in the Haunted Woods,” Exiuz wondered.
“Unfortunately, no,” Alisha shook her head. “Most of the inhabitants of the Haunted Woods are nice and kind, but this Meowclops was very mean and I don’t blame Valerie for running away, but she ran away so fast that I couldn’t catch her.”
Exiuz promised Alisha that he would do everything in his power to find Valerie, although he wasn’t sure if his nerves would catch up to him first. He searched almost everywhere; the Gypsy Camp, the Haunted House, the Stone Dome, and even the dreaded Brain Tree. Unfortunately The Brain Tree didn’t have much to say beyond calling Exiuz a weakling and saying that he had a job for Exiuz. The Brain Tree wouldn’t give him any answers unless Exiuz helped The Brain Tree out with finding some information about a specific neopian. Although Exiuz didn’t blame the tree for asking for a favor, Exiuz was angry at the tree for not offering even the slightest of hints as to where Valerie was at. As Exiuz stomped away in anger towards the Deserted Fairgrounds, he called out for Valerie.
“Come here, Valerie. You’re missing out on a fun game of Wingoball with your owner, Alisha!”
Exiuz then stopped as he felt rather silly for calling out to a Snorkle when she probably only understood the language of snorts, considering Valerie was a baby piggy. Exiuz walked through the gate of the Deserted Fairground, and as soon as he entered, the owner of Bagatelle walked towards him.
“Fancy a game? Only two-hundred-and-fifty neopoints and you have the chance of winning the jackpot,” the owner exclaimed.
“Sorry, I can't play right now. I’m looking for a Green Snorkle named Valerie, have you seen her? She’s lost,” Exiuz said.
“‘’I’m afraid not. I was at lunch and just came back a few minutes ago. But if you ever come back around, let me know and I’ll give ya’ a free try at my game as a reward for your efforts,” the owner responded.
Exiuz looked very concerned as he thanked the owner and walked away. He only had a couple spots left to search and he didn’t want to disappoint Alisha. He asked almost everyone in the Deserted Fairground and none of them had seen Valerie anywhere. Leeroy, the owner of Coconut Shy, thought he saw something green moving around about an hour before Exiuz had walked by, and Leeroy mentioned that it was moving slowly towards Test Your Strength.
But as Exiuz walked by the strength game, he noticed a green apple that was being carried away by ants. Obviously it wasn’t a Green Snorkle by the name of Valerie, so Exiuz turned back around and decided he was going to get a snack at the Spooky Food Cart. Looking at the green apple with remnants of caramel on it had made him hungry, and although he was upset at not being able to find Valerie, the smell of Spooky Doughnuts was wafting through the air.
He bought a doughnut and bit into the delicious smelling treat while he contemplated searching Castle Nox. Although The Brain Tree was scary, the home of Hubrid Nox seemed much scarier. Not to mention the fact that Exiuz saw lighting flickering behind the terrifying mansion, which illuminated the building and the trees surrounding it. Even the trees reminded Exiuz of monsters.
Right as Exiuz finished eating his treat, he heard something scurrying around inside the trash can that was conveniently located near the food cart. Exiuz took a flashlight out of his pocket and took off to investigate. He heard something munching on remnants of food inside the can, and Exiuz felt his heart thump as he moved closer. He didn’t know what was in the trash can and he really didn’t want to know, but curiosity got the best of him. Just as he considered turning back in case it was some sort of evil creature, he saw a tiny green tail sticking out of the trash can.
“Valerie, there you are!” Exiuz ran to the trash can and noticed that Valerie was happily munching on an assortment of half-eaten treats that were dumped into the trash can. Exiuz picked up Valerie and she happily curled up into his arms to take a nap.
“It’s time to go home now, buddy,” Exiuz quietly whispered as he grinned widely. He walked out of the Deserted Fairground, but not before he waved at the Bagatelle owner and even informed Leeroy that it was an apple Leeroy had seen, but that if it wasn’t for that apple, Exiuz probably wouldn’t of considered walking by the Spooky Food Cart. Exiuz even took a trip to The Brain Tree and told him that Valerie was found, and Exiuz promised that tomorrow he would complete one of the tree’s quests. Twigs crunched underneath Exiuz's feet as he walked through the Haunted Woods and towards Alisha’s house, but Valerie didn’t notice the crunching and was instead in a deep sleep. She even snored loudly which scared away the Spyders that were roaming throughout the woods.
Alisha was ecstatic when she saw Valerie. Alisha had thought that Valerie was lost forever, and she couldn’t believe her luck.
“Thank you so much. I don’t know how I’ll ever be able to repay you for this,” Alisha said through tears.
“Don’t worry about it. I'm just happy I found her,” Exiuz responded with a smile.
It was getting late so Exiuz said goodbye to Alisha and gave Valerie the Snorkle a quick head rub. Exiuz walked back to his office that was located near the entrance to the woods that he had originally deemed scary, but he was getting used to the place. Maybe a job in the Haunted Woods wasn’t so bad after all.