My Robot Aisha is still out there somewhere, frozen in time, a line of data on a hard drive. Grey and cold, she awaits my return.

Neopets was a lot of firsts for me. It wasn’t my first online addiction (that would be a text-based MUD called Medievia), but it was where I first really got immersed in a forum of strangers. I had my first online crush on a mysterious woman. Literally, her username was “m_y_s_t_e_r_y” and she turned out to be a 33-year-old woman named Donna from Canada. She convinced me to go vegetarian for a week, much to the annoyance of my mom, who yelled at me until I cried.

My first website, a Neopets fansite on Geocities where I abused the <marquee> tag and CoolText.com (which still exists!) way too much.

My first online betrayal. I convinced Donna to give me the password to her account, then I stole her Tiki Bomb Bag by laundering it through a couple shell accounts to hide my tracks, and told her she was hacked. This was after she told me she had a boyfriend.

My first ban. I got caught using a script to auto-buy items.

I had already moved on to another game. I never got to say goodbye to my Robot Aisha.

Leon Chang writes songs, makes pixel art, but mostly just posts online a lot.