It’s the first of April, the beginning of a new and exciting month of books, but the Pond looks a little strange. Everything seems a little more crisp. And sharper. It’s like you suddenly have a magical pair of goggles and you are seeing the Pond with a new lens. The magic is still in the air, you can feel it, but you have a sneaking suspicion that something is very… off about the Pond.
Recognising Xiaolong’s voice, you turn around, ready to greet your little axolotl friend —
Well. Oh my goodness. Xiaolong looks… a little… different. She’s still the same pink axolotl, she’s still wearing her little purple flower hat, but…
Seeing your hesitation and your confused face, Xiaolong looks at you with a worried expression. “Friend, is there something wrong?”
Xiaolong… what’s going on? you ask.
“What do you mean?” ask Xiaolong, though she looks like she’s trying not to smile. She turns away and calls for everyone else to come over. “Everyone, our friend is here!”
One by one, all your pond friends come over to greet you. But although they seem to be their friendly, normal selves, everyone still looks different.
Gen is still his normal turtle-ly self with his green skin and purple shell, though he seems to look more scaly than last time! Oh, and his claws! You never noticed that before.
Varian looks a little smaller. Maybe even a little cuter? And their eyes! Their eyes look so bigger and more googly than you remember! Or, did you just not notice that before?
Cuddle, your newest friend, is floating in the water and wearing her purple pajama hat. Indeed, Party is in her hands as well! But she looks more… furry than before.
Xiaolong, you say, trying to find the words. What does Amina look like? (Because, even though you’ve heard so much about her, you still haven’t met her yet!)
“Oh!” Xiaolong holds up a photograph of Amina. “She looks like this! Sweet hedgehog, powerful mage, loves her hat?”
You peer at the photograph and, indeed, it is as Xiaolong described.
You lean back, folding your arms. Your pond friends look up at you, as if waiting for you to say something.
But then, Xiaolong suddenly bursts out laughing. “I’m sorry friend!” she says between laughter, “I can’t do it anymore!”
“April Fools!” all the pond friends say in unison.
April Fools? But of course! Today is the first day of April! Hearing Xiaolong’s infectious laughter brings a giggle out of you, and the other pond friends start laughing too.
“Xiaolong!” chides Varian, though they don’t look too mad. “You gave us away! We practiced this so many times so you wouldn’t laugh too!”
“I didn’t think she’d last this long,” Gen says to Cuddle, shaking their heads together.
“I’m sorry!” says Xiaolong again, which only makes her laugh harder. “The look on friend’s face! I couldn’t hold it in anymore.”
You take the opportunity to stay a little longer and catch up with your pond friends, since you haven’t seen them all in awhile. And before you leave, you take a look over your shoulder — everything looks like it’s back to normal!
As an anxious bundle of a human being, April Fools was something that I always dreaded. (Any anxious beans out there? I see you. 💛)
I hope, though, that my little April Fools joke got a giggle out of you! Making this was a lot of fun, and I hope it made your day a little brighter.
Have a lovely and safe day, my friends.