An Afternoon at Queequeg’s
A Giant Hawk Adventures short
“In the world of Poptropica, the most beloved and admirable profession one can achieve is that of the professional adventurer – one who explores the world daily, saving it whenever needed. Likewise, there is no adventuring organization more highly decorated than the Bureau of Heroic Poptropicans. All of us Poptropicans owe our highest of graditudes to the BHP, and its eight skilled leaders; Slanted Fish, Brave Trinity, Meridian Sinker, Slippery Raptor, Spotted Dragon, Tough Icicle, Lone Ring, and Yellow Sword.
This has been your humble reporter, Giant Hawk, signing off for the last time. Thank you for everything you all have done, and for allowing me to update and inform you this past year.”
I breathed a sigh of relief upon seeing the camera’s red light go off, because with it went my career as a small-time reporter and unprofessional explorer. Not that I hated it or anything, but because I could finally prepare for tomorrow.
“Alright Giant Hawk,” declared my cameraman, “Everything is airing as we speak.”
With one look at his melancholy face, I could tell the poor guy was going to miss me – but I also knew he thought himself too tough to admit it. With a smile, I told the Cameraman to come in for a goodbye hug, to which he accepted.
“Good luck with your big interview tomorrow. Knowing you, you’ll pass it with flying colors,” my cameraman assured me, holding back a tear.
Releasing him from my grip, I gave him a simple “thanks, buddy.”
For a moment, there was silence. Then, clearing his throat and adjusting his posture, the Cameraman asked me to help him load up the news truck. I did so, and after finishing, I asked him, “Could you drive me home?”
“Well, of course! I can’t have you missing your meet-up with your lady friend,” he replied with a wink. “You’ve still gotta change, don’t ya?
Despite being in the middle of buckling my seat belt, I found myself frozen in place. I couldn’t believe it! In my excitement, I had completely forgotten!
“Well don’t just sit there making your jokes, we’ve got to get going!” I practically exclaimed after my shock wore off.
Grinning, the Cameraman sped off, driving like a maniac. And after a solid seven minutes of gripping for dear life, I discovered that we were parking in front of my apartment building.
I slowly climbed out of the vehicle, still a bit shaky. As I closed the door, I remembered what the Cameraman had implied earlier and stated simply, “And she’s not my girlfriend.”
“Oh, I know,” the Cameraman slyly answered, “I just couldn’t help myself.”
I rolled my eyes, before watching the man rocket off again. Before deciding to head inside, I marveled, “How is his driving still legal?”
Nonetheless, I raced down the corridors of the building, and finally located room 11299, my quaint little home. I busted out my key, slipped inside, and prepared to change. I mean, I was still wearing my black-and-forest-green suit. Definitely not the appropriate attire for my rendezvous with Nice Seal.
Slipping into a comfortable sweater top and black jeans, I was finally ready. I strolled out of my apartment, and headed down the street to the local Queequeg’s Coffeehouse – Nice Seal’s favorite spot. After all, she always was a big lover of its low-caffeine coffee and calm atmosphere.
Opening the door, I spotted Nice Seal, sitting in her favorite spot next to the establishment’s TV in the corner.
Ah, Nice Seal. She and I had been the best of friends since childhood. Sure, there was my other closest childhood friend, Yellow Sword, but he had moved away during our teens, leaving just me and Nice Seal. Hence, she and I grew up together, and it couldn’t have been better.
Nice Seal was like me, in the respect that we both loved adventure. However, she was always less sociable than me, and despite her charming, sarcastic sense of humor, she didn’t have very many friends. In fact, I was really her only good friend now, and she definitely knew it. The two of us did a lot together, but our favorite thing to do was just sitting back and having a conversation. And the place that we hung out at the most had to be our local Queequeg’s.
Sauntering into the establishment, I walked over to the seat next to Nice Seal. As I did, I watched as her face lit up, forming an undeniable grin. Her eyes, too, gave off a certain shimmer that told you ‘I am so glad to see you again’.
“Sorry for being late,” I expressed regrettably, “I was just filming my final report.”
“Oh, I know. I was watching you on TV,” Nice Seal said, pointing to the screen above her.
The TV, while not featuring my report anymore, was still showing news. It suddenly flickering over to a commercial break, however, poignantly starting with an advertisement for the BHP.
“So, are you excited for tomorrow?” asked Nice Seal.
“Heck yes!” I replied. “I can’t wait for the big interview!”
“Oh, I can tell,” Nice Seal noted. “It’s all you’ve been able to talk about for the past two weeks.”
“Well, can you blame me? This could be my big chance to become a professional adventurer!” an eager me responded. “Just think about it. I could finally do what I’ve wanted to ever since we were kids.”
Chuckling, Nice Seal said, “That reminds me of the time our class took a field trip to the BHP headquarters.”
“I remember that! Man, 10-year-old me almost fainted when Hyper Ice Sr. came to talk to our class,” I reminisced.
“I’m pretty sure you weren’t the only one. Yellow Sword was squealing with excitement,” Nice Seal reminded me.
“Yeah. We were both so ecstatic that we were meeting one of the BHP’s top adventurers. And now… Yellow Sword is one of them.”
“It really is a small world, isn’t it?”
I chuckled, and after a moment of awkward silence, my smile began to fade.
“Yeah – it’s a small world all right…” I sighed, “Say, Nice Seal? On the chance that I’ll see Yellow Sword tomorrow, do you think he’ll recognize me?”
Nice Seal contemplated for a second before replying. “Well, it’s definitely possible. But I can’t really be sure. After all, you two haven’t seen each other for years and years now.”
Once again, an awkward silence floated about the table at the corner of the coffeehouse establishment.
“Alright, Giant Hawk, come on. Don’t drag yourself down now,” Nice Seal urged. “You’re still going to do great tomorrow. I can tell.”
A small grin returned to my face. “Come on, Nice Seal. You’re just saying that,” I repudiated.
“Oh, sure I am.” Nice Seal responded sarcastically, “Well, just you wait. Tomorrow is going to be the best thing to ever happen to you!”
To be continued in Early Poptropica, chapter 1: ‘The Hero’s Audition’…