Wednesday, August 31, 2022
Wednesday, August 24, 2022
From the moment Suhel Caradoc laid eyes on the Lynwood School for Girls, she knew she did not belong there.
The little Christmas-coloured Lupe poked out her snout from the window of her carriage, eyeing the grounds with distaste. The low-cut lawns stood behind signs saying “KEEP OFF THE GRASS”. The stately trees had been expertly trimmed to remove all low-hanging branches that might facilitate climbing. The school building itself was the most boring grey monolith Suhel had ever seen, as if not a single Neopoint of the construction budget had gone into trying to make it interesting or beautiful. At least Suhel’s parents’ house contained the expensive things they had bought to show off, but Lynwood seemed to scream dullness—or rather, to whisper it politely.
Suhel’s dark green ears drooped. Barring holidays, this was to be her home for the next seven years of her education, and she felt a pit of dread well up in her stomach.
Thursday, August 18, 2022
Tuesday, August 2, 2022
Wednesday, May 11, 2022
Today I followed a painting tutorial on the Corel Painter YouTube channel. (And by "followed", I of course mean "observed the instructor's brushes and techniques and used them to create something entirely different".)
My painting is pretty rusty, but I feel like maybe this didn't turn out completely horribly. And I learned some very useful digital painting techniques so that's nice.
Tuesday, April 19, 2022
This is definitely one of the less serious entries in my Neopets fanfic corpus, but I'm including it here because it just plain amuses me. I also think it's a good bit of character development for Hyren, lest anyone think he went soft after defecting from Virtupets to save two socially awkward children. :) (There is also a teeny, tiny bit of lore in here that comes into play in a future fic, but my main reason for including this one is that I just think it's funny.)
I always suspected that my Grundo had a sadistic streak. Years of serving as a commander in Dr. Sloth’s galactic marine corps will probably do that to you. But my hunch was confirmed the day Hyren brought home an Adventure Generator.
I was sprawled on one of the library couches in our Neohome, reading, when the little blue guy walked in and spread a scroll of parchment across the table. He looked it up and down and nodded satisfactorily, and uncorked a bottle of ink.
Hyren prefers to let his swords do the talking, so his sudden interest in writing piqued my interest. “What are you doing?” I asked from behind my copy of Destruct-O-Match Basics—that fiendish avatar keeps eluding me.
“Making a Neoadventure,” he said, dipping his pen.
I raised an eyebrow. “That’s new.”
Wednesday, April 6, 2022
Night in the Haunted Woods falls with swiftness upon its victims.
It is not as many stories say—the forest is not rife with yowling spooks and ghoulish spectres at every turn. It is not a scaled-up version of a Neopia Central home’s Halloween decorations, which brashly proclaim frightfulness in the most colourful of fashions.
The terror of the Haunted Woods is quieter, more cunning than that. It lies in wait, never fully asleep, a brooding heaviness of barely-heard echoes and strange feelings in the air that taunt the mind until the Woods decides to reveal its darkest secrets. Something is out there – perhaps many somethings – that makes even the bravest and hardiest Neopet return from the Woods forever shaken.
Unless they are a Werelupe—and then at one time it was home.
Friday, April 1, 2022
Dedicated to all members of the Neopets Team, past and present, whose hard work and creative genius have made Neopia a safe haven and source of joy for so many. Thank you.
Even back in Year 4, Neopia Central was a busy place.
Bustling crowds of shoppers hurried from one store to the next, or stopped to eat, or unfolded that week’s copy of the Neopian Times to read the conclusion to their favourite series. All of them had a Neopet or several by their side, crowded around their owners with enthusiasm, admiration, and sometimes a good-natured snarky comment.
Amid the throng, a young human girl strode with purpose. She was a simple pale-skinned teen, with her long copper hair tied back and her blue eyes hidden shyly behind glasses. Certainly, she did not stand out among her fellow owners.
But one thing made her different.
She was alone.
Wednesday, March 30, 2022
Thursday, March 10, 2022
A wriggling pink mass of space fungus splayed its tentacles into the control room, bowling over Hyren. He almost got sick right there, but he forced himself to keep his composure and complete the roll, springing back up to punch away a tentacle and wrestle several more.
“This is Engineering!” a female voice fizzed from behind Hyren. “How in the galaxy are you contacting us?”
“I managed to restore the network,” Dothan said. “We’re under space fungus infestation!”
“I know that!” the other voice snapped. “I’ve been trying to activate the repellent for half an hour now!”
Hyren tried to wrench the doors closed. It didn’t work, both because the dense fungus wouldn’t get out of the way, and because Hyren’s own stomach was still in upheaval. As he had to use more and more of his energy to control his digestive system, his strength had begun to give.
Wednesday, March 9, 2022
Hyren knew he at least couldn’t secure the station from here. Suppressing a moan, he moved for the door and it slid open to reveal a darkened, deserted hallway. If engineering wasn’t going to answer, he’d just have to go to them himself—after he collected his weapons and armour from his dormitory. Adrenaline would just have to help him ignore the nausea.
“I sure am glad I’m allergic to glowspice,” Dothan said.
Hyren froze and turned around. The ensign was trailing him like a hapless baby Nedler. “Just don’t get in my way,” Hyren said.
Their bare feet slapped on the floor as they made their way toward the lifts. They passed no one else in the silent corridors. It seemed as though everyone but Dothan had eaten the spiced apple pie. And with the station's’s network down, any nearby robot Petpets wouldn’t be of much assistance.
Hyren pushed the lift button, and in response got a red indicator light. He stared up at it, wishing it meant anything but a lift lockdown. Standing back, he contemplated prying the doors open with his bare hands and climbing up the cable. His stomach protested and he winced.
Tuesday, March 8, 2022
Grundo’s Café was as busy as ever. The canteen on the recreation deck of the Virtupets Space Station held a myriad of Neopets unwrapping their rehydrated chicken dumplings and carefully nibbling their electric nachos. Wall-mounted screens showed the latest in news and entertainment from around the galaxy, including an interview with some Alien Aisha musicians and the latest strike on Sloth’s forces on some far-flung world.
“Order up!” Gargarox, the chef-proprietor, hollered. A light blinked on the overhang above the kitchen, and the mutant Grundo slid a tray of food to a waiting Stopngo 400. The squat robot Petpet extended its mechanical arms to receive the tray, stomping off with it to one of the tables in the expansive diner. Gargarox turned back to the food synthesisers and picked up another dish, lumbering over to the long counter surrounding the kitchen to serve a patron sitting there.
“I can never finish these milkyway shakes,” Terra said, swinging her legs as they dangled from her stool. The copper-haired human woman set down a cup still half-full of a glittering dark beverage. “They’re so good… but so filling. Somehow.” She slid the shake over to the Grundo. “Want the rest?”
Hyren looked up from his beef rouladen and smiled. “Sure.”
It had been a good stay on the Space Station with his family. Relaxing, with the occasional chaotic hijinks, and a healthy dose of snark mixed in. It was what made his family the best in the universe.
Tuesday, February 22, 2022
Saturday, February 19, 2022