Young Jhudora and Queen Fyora: Part Ten
Days of exile turned into weeks, and weeks turned to months. In the beginning, Fyora teleported into Jhudora’s cottage every week. Fyora would bring food and building supplies to help Jhudora build herself something more luxurious than a cottage made of mud and straw.
Then the months turned to years and Fyora could only stop by every month. Jhudora took it in stride. As Neopia became more interconnected, Fyora had to deal with more than just the faeries under her nose. She had to keep the peace with the other lands, also.
But, like clockwork, Fyora still came to visit bearing food, supplies, and small gifts once a month. When Fyora would ask what Jhudora wanted next month, Jhudora would only ask for a few, cheap items.
As the years turned to decades and the decades turned to centuries, Fyora became more and more distraught at the state of Jhudora’s life. Her skin was taut against her bones and her home was in drastic need of repair. However, every time Fyora begged to help, Jhudora muttered something about not being a burden.
Nearly five hundred years after Jhudora’s banishment, Fyora arrived without food or supplies.
Jhudora looked up at Fyora and smiled softly, her eyes glazed over.
"Jhudora," Fyora sighed, "I did something bad."
"Oh?" Jhudora laughed softly, "I don’t believe it."
Fyora gestured over to a pile of weapons Jhudora had made while trying to craft the perfect wand. "I stole one of your wands," Fyora looked down at her feet, "And I gave it to a little Kacheek and told him to go to the Battledome with it and tell a lie. I told him to tell everyone that after completing fifty quests for the evil faerie Jhudora, he was given one of the most powerful wands in all of Neopia."
"Oh," Jhudora blushed, "I didn’t expect that."
"Jhudora, I love spending time with you," Fyora sighed as she put one hand on Jhudora’s shoulder, "But whenever I try to help you, you are too guilty to accept it. All I want is for you to be happy, but your guilt gets in the way of it."
"You’re the queen," Jhudora looked down at her feet, "You have more important things to do than to go to the Haunted Woods and find a fungus that only grows on the Brain Tree."
Fyora smiled brightly and nodded, "But a Tonu or an Ixi who wanted your wand would!"
Jhudora hummed as she processed the information. She looked over at her Bartamuses and sighed. "What do I give them to reward them other than the wand?"
"Well," Fyora looked over at the colony of Bartamuses hanging from the ceiling, "A Bartamus. Give them a Bartamus. And maybe poisonous candy or something."
"Why would I poison . . ." Jhudora trailed off, "Oh, right. I would love to take this burden off of your shoulders by accepting quests."
"But," Fyora bit her lip, "There is one important thing . . ."
Jhudora looked up at Fyora and sighed. She knew what was coming. Fyora was going to ask her to pretend to be evil incarnate to protect her reputation.
"It’s just," Fyora let out a deep breath, "Dark faeries have assimilated into Faerieland along with water faeries. If dark faeries who live there now find out that I banished you just for being a dark faerie, I truly may be dethroned."
Jhudora nodded in agreement. Of course she agreed that she needed to pretend to be evil. She wanted to be a good and kind faerie, but that would ruin Fyora. Jhudora stood and made her way to the kitchen. She pulled a pie out of the oven and sat it on the counter. She looked up at the ceiling and took a deep breath. The kitchen had been completely renovated thanks to Fyora’s help. The once drab, brown walls were now a slick, shining purple. The dirt oven was traded in for a metal contraption and there was a magical, constantly cool icebox against the wall. She stared at the icebox as she thought about what Fyora had done for her.
Jhudora stared out of the window towards Faerieland. There were dark faeries living there now. Maybe if Fyora had sent her away as The Elders wanted, she would be living there now too. She grabbed a knife and began to cut into the pie, still staring out the window.
But by the same token, she would have never been able to come back to her childhood home. Surely, it would have been destroyed if she had not been exiled to it. It was the kind of argument she made whenever she felt ungrateful. She always pushed down the rational part of her that said that a house was not worth surrendering her social life. But it was the last place she had seen the Elder, so surely that counted for something.
She listlessly grabbed two plates and plates one piece of pie for her, and one for Fyora. It was a simple cherry pie, no different from one baked by a Neopet.
"Thank you for the cherry tree cuttings," Jhudora forced an awkward laugh as she sat the two plates down on the table. She turned to grab two forks, "I love the cherries."
"I’m glad," Fyora smiled softly, "I’m very glad."
Jhudora and Fyora both sat down. Jhudora handed Fyora a fork. They ate pie in awkward silence.
Once they had finished eating, Fyora cleared her throat. She looked back at Jhudora’s kitchen and then looked at Jhudora. She stood and asked abruptly, "Can you make candy?"
Jhudora stared in shock before slowly nodding.
"Make as many poisonous lollipops as you can. That will be your first prize. Give one to anyone who does a quest for you. You’ll think of something else to give them, but the first thing will be candy." Fyora began to pace the room, "They’ll be here sooner than later, so you need to get to cooking."
Jhudora blushed a deep purple. It was extremely sudden, but she followed the orders regardless. She hurried to her kitchen and began to pull out pots and pans and an obscene amount of sugar.
Fyora stopped pacing as she watched Jhudora begin to pour water into one of the pots. Fyora giggled softly.
"Huh?" Jhudora glanced over her shoulder. "Am I doing it wrong?"
"Well," Fyora smiled softly, "Most faeries would just conjure some up. But it’s so respectable of you to cook them yourself."
Jhudora paused with a confused look on her face before laughing as well. "I guess you should have said I better get to magic-ing!"
Jhudora looked back at the pots and pans. She turned to Fyora and held out her hand. She flicked her wrist, and a pile of purple and green lollipops appeared in her hand.
"Do you think this is a good idea?" Jhudora nervously looked down at the candy. It didn’t look pleasant, and she knew it wouldn’t taste pleasant.
"Jhudora," Fyora sighed softly, "I need you to be safe and happy, even without me. There may be a day when I can no longer come here. And when that day comes, I need to know you’ll be alright."
Fyora’s eyes widened as she sensed a strange Neopian coming towards Jhudora’s cottage. She pulled Jhudora into a quick hug before teleporting away.
"Thank you," Jhudora whispered softly with a smile.
There was a shy knock at the door. Jhudora cleared her throat and contorted her face into the most menacing grimace possible. She threw the door open and hissed, "What do you want?"
She paused as she realized what was at her door. A small, blue Kacheek was standing in front of her, shaking. If she didn’t care about Fyora, she would scoop the Kacheek into her arms and give it a giant hug. She’d tell him that everything was alright and that she’d never hurt him.
However, she did care about Fyora. She growled at the Kacheek, her heart breaking as he began to shake harder. "Bring me a purple rug!"
The Kacheek nodded and whimpered, "I accept your quest!" He quickly turned away and began running as fast as he could. Jhudora slammed the door shut before turning and leaning against it. She felt awful, but she knew that was who she had to be to keep Fyora safe.
As soon as she had calmed down, there was another knock. She opened the door and gasped. There was a small crowd of neopets. A Uni charged forward and announced, "I will complete every quest of yours! That wand will be mine!"
Jhudora stood still. She was frozen in shock and she didn’t know how to respond to that statement and still sound evil. She cleared her throat before cackling, "And if you fail, I might turn you into a Slorg!"
The Uni smirked, "It’s on, Dark Faerie."
"Then . . . bring me purple paint for my walls!" Jhudora cackled, "Run! Run before I turn you into a Slorg!"
The Uni laughed and galloped away. Jhudora fought back a smile as she glared at the neopets around her. She could do it. She could pretend to be the evil faerie the Elders thought she was centuries ago.
She shouted out, "Next! Who will bring me my next item?!"
The neopets all clamored, jumping up and down with their paws and hooves in the air. Jhudora began pointing at each Neopet and shouting a random item at them. Each Neopet ran away as quickly as they could to find the item she asked for. She crossed her arms over her chest and smirked. Just as the crowd began to thin, more pets showed up to beg for a chance to eventually get their own wands.
Then the neopets came back to her, bearing the items she asked for. She snatched each item and shoved their poisonous lollipop at them. She hissed, "Forty-nine more quests until you get the wand!"
It went on for hours until the setting of the sun scared the neopets away. Jhudora took a deep breath and went back into her home. She closed her eyes smiled softly and whispered, "Thank you, Fyora. I will be alright without you."