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- Today's Pet Spotlight -

Pet Name: Calaehn
Owner: readjust
Breed: Flotsam

About Calaehn:
“Allow me to introduce myself.”

The handsome Royal Flotsam calmly reaches out a fin to greet you, while studying you with an arrogant set to his eyes.

“I am Prince Calaehn, Protector of Maraqua”

He chuckles as he watches the confusion spread across your face.

“Am I right in assuming the title is unfamiliar to you? I’m not at all surprised. Protector of Maraqua is an ancient Maraquan title bestowed on the King’s youngest son, and it has only recently been reintroduced to our Kingdom. The story of it’s reinstatement is linked to the story of why I am here with readjust, quite a distance away from my home. Would you like to hear it?”

Giving you no time to reply, the Flotsam continues his story as if the thought of you having other things to do never crossed his mind. And indeed, you suspect that’s the truth, as you sense the young prince before you has a rather exaggerated opinion of his own importance.

“The War left the Maraquan people shaken. Once before had their Kingdom been destroyed, and now they had faced that same fate only to narrowly avoid it thanks to a pirate. Noticing their dejection, the King knew he would have to take steps to give his people the sense of security back. Therefore, he reinstated the old tradition and named me Protector of Maraqua. The knighting was a cause for great celebration among the people, and in the time that followed the citizens walked with straighter backs and a prouder gait. Father’s clever design had succeeded, the Maraquans had faith in their nation, and I knew not only the luxury of being royalty but also the undying devotion of the people.”

Calaehn grins at the memory, but the smirk is quickly replaced by a dark frown.

“Of course it didn’t last. Father quickly realised that I didn’t have the qualities needed to defend Maraqua. Or rather, as he put it, I wouldn’t know a broadsword from a butterknife.”

An ugly scowl mars his handsome face as he says this, and suddenly the saying ‘it’s not gold all that glitters’ comes to your mind.

“He said I was weak,” the prince continued darkly, “and unless I wanted to lose all my privileges that followed with my heritage, I should go into training and increase my battle skills. I tried to follow his directive but I, err, I couldn’t find anyone in Maraqua that could give me the training I needed.”

In the little silence that follows, you get the feeling the young prince is not being entirely truthful with you. Maybe it’s because he refuses to meet your eyes, or maybe it’s because he suddenly can’t keep his hands still, wiping invisible specks of dust off his expensive clothing. In a flash of enlightenment you realise he’s lying, Swordsmaster Talek could surely have given him the training he needed. You are just about to voice your suspicion of laziness when the haughty prince continues his tale.

“If there’s one thing I have learned about my father after this, it’s that he does not fare with empty threats.”

He huffs.

”A month later he came to my room and told me to follow him to the castle entrance as there was someone he wanted me to meet. My curiosity piqued, I followed him only to find a human waiting at the gates. With my royal carrying cases in her hands.”

His expression turns from huffy to outright furious at the memory.

“The old man was actually sending me away to live with a human! To be trained the way humans train their Neopets companions and to ‘learn how life really is, outside of the comforts of the castle walls’. Me, a Prince of Maraqua, living with a human! As her PET!!”

His eyes widen with rage as he madly flails his fins in anger, and you warily take a small step backwards. A puzzled frown enters his face when he notice your move, until he realises what a threatening figure he must have made, and he noticeably calms down.

“My apologies. Readjust does say I have a horrible temper.”

He rolls his eyes as he noticed what he just said.

“Listen to me, ‘Readjust says this, readjust says that’, what a sad state I’m in. You wouldn’t believe how she bosses me around, making me train with that cranky three-legged pirate with the speech impediment, and running errands for the faeries at the Employment agency. Character building, she calls it.”

He snorts, and the little reminder of his temper makes you refrain from correcting his characterisation of Cap’n Threelegs‘ pirate accent. But then his mood changes abrubtly and he smiles grudgingly.

“I can’t really complain about my situation, though. Sure, I have to train and work for a few hours a day, but readjust dotes up on me just as much as my father ever did.”

He gives you a mischievous wink.

“In fact, I’d say she spoils me more.”

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