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Brothers and Sisters

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Fan Art' started by Slackbot, Apr 11, 2012.

  1. muppetfan24/7 Well-Known Member

    Actually, the episode was called, "Beyond the Pond" and the song was called, "The tree of Life"

    I will buy three hats if you don't mind everyone. Awesome story and I am back to "patience mode."
  2. Slackbot Well-Known Member

    Oop, you're right. I tend to think of this episode and "The River of Life" together, and I think I blended the titles. I'm pretty bad with the titles of FR episodes in general, though.

    That episode, BTW, supports my premise that the geography of the Rock actually changes in response to the needs of the Fraggles. In the first season the Great Hall was festooned with pipes, and the pond was shallow and drained every day when Junior pumped the water out for Pa's bath. In "Beyond the Pond" it's connected to underwater tunnels which lead to Merggle Lake (or whatever). Earlier on the Fraggles were protected from outside influences, and later they were ready to interact with other kinds of people. The Merggles were an intermediate step: Fraggles, but a very different variety.
    muppetfan24/7 and The Count like this.
  3. Slackbot Well-Known Member

    Oh no! This thread has slipped onto page two! Better bump it fast! And what better way to bump than with a new chapter?

    *****

    Brothers and Sisters
    Part 11: Spit it Out
    by Kim McFarland

    *****

    Red and Skeeter entered Wembley and Gobo's room. The rest of the family plus Scooter were there, along with evidence of the reason for their gathering in the form of a recently-finished meal. Red announced, "Hey, everyone! We're back!"

    Gobo said, "Where'd you two go off to? It's not like you to miss lunch, Red."

    "Skeeter and I were just having a little race in Outer Space. We lost track of time," she answered casually.

    Wembley exclaimed, "You did? Outer Space? Really?"

    "Sure did! Is there any lunch left over? I'm starved."

    Boober said, "I just happened to have saved some for you. You too, Skeeter."

    "Aw, thanks, Boober," Red said as she accepted a plate from him. Skeeter took the one he offered her, stifling her reluctance. It was kind of him, but she simply didn't like radishes. However, this looked more like quiche. And, she realized when she tasted it, it was quiche, with lots of vegetables, many of which weren't radishes. It was good, too.

    "Did you win, Mama? You won, right?" Poncle asked eagerly.

    "Gimme a moment," Red answered. She was busy demolishing her lunch. Being terrified was hungry work. The others let her eat in peace. When Red was more eager to eat than to boast, she had to be famished. When she finished that she said, "Got any dessert?"

    "Of course," Boober said, offering some pink squares.

    Red snagged one eagerly and told Skeeter, "These are great!"

    "Cool." Skeeter took the other.

    Boober began, "Wait-"

    Skeeter bit in. Then she stopped, startled and appalled and trying not to show it.

    Puzzled, Boober said, "Scooter told me you didn't like radish."

    Embarrassed, she said, "A-heh-heh, yeah. I wasn't gonna say anything. It caught me by surprise."

    "You don't like radish bars? You are Silly Creatures," Red told her.

    Boober offered Skeeter some grape-sized blueberries in a bowl. She said "Thanks," and began eating, mostly to get the taste of sugared radish out of her mouth.

    "You gonna finish that radish bar?" Red asked.

    "You want it? Here," Skeeter answered.

    "Thanks!"

    Gobo said, "So, tell us about this race of yours."

    Red swallowed the last of the radish bar and began, "After we climbed Schist Cliff yesterday I told Skeeter she could choose the course for our rematch. The next day, she led us both—you know where?"

    "Outer Space!" Poncle yelled.

    "That's right! Down into the T. Matthew Fraggle room we went. Then into one of its thousands of mysterious passages. The passage turned into a dirt tunnel. Down the damp, twisty tunnel we went. And then we came up into a land filled with trees. So many trees, you could never see the end of them! If you ever forgot where the hole in the ground was, you'd be lost forever!"

    Skeeter was listening with a grin. If Red was going to milk this, Skeeter wouldn't contradict her. In fact, she was looking forward to hearing Red's saga.

    Red continued, "It was an obstacle race. First we ran up a huge rock and jumped from the top onto trees and climbed down them to the ground. Then into a valley made of dirt instead of stone."

    "That would explain how dirty your shirt is," Boober said queasily.

    "Then we swam across the river in the center of that valley. Finally, we had to run across a huge grassy field full of—nothing! Empty nothing all around, as if everything in the world but grass had disappeared! And do you think I was scared?"

    "No!" Poncle exclaimed, enthralled.

    "You bet your baloobius I was scared! If I ever lost track of my path I'd be lost in Outer Space forever! But Skeeter and I made it to the tree in the middle of all that nothing anyway! And then all the way back," Red finished proudly.

    "Wow," Wembley said, awed. "That's some story!"

    "Isn't it, though?" Gobo said with a skeptical grin.

    "Hey, that's the way it happened," Skeeter said. Well, it wasn't wrong.

    "So, who won?" Sage asked.

    Red jerked a thumb at Skeeter. "What can I say, she's better at that kinda thing than I am."

    "Well, I am still impressed," Mokey said. "It takes so much courage to go that far into Outer Space!"

    "Yeah," Red said, pleased that her point had come across.

    Janken said to Skeeter, "You beat Red? That's no small feat. Enjoy it while you can, 'cause if I know her she's gonna want a rematch."

    "Not any time soon," Red replied. "One trip through Outer Space is enough for me. Gobo and Matt can keep it."

    Gobo nodded. He had been watching Skeeter's expression while Red had narrated the saga. She looked amused, as if she was in on some sort of joke. Red wasn't telling the whole story... Well, fine. Despite himself, he was impressed. Outer Space could be scary, and Red had never braved it further than the inside of Doc's home. No matter what else had happened, she deserved to bask in her glory.

    After a bit of chatter, Mokey and Gobo gathered up the empty dishes and carried them to the kitchen to wash them. Sage was working over what she wanted to say to Janken in her head. Before lunch she had decided that she would talk to him now. She was about to go to him when he told Scooter, "Speaking of exploring, there's someone else I want you to meet. One of the most important people of the Rock."

    Scooter replied, "Sure. 'Speaking of exploring,' you said?"

    "You'll see what I mean. C'mon. Oh, I better get my backpack."

    They left. Sage sighed and her shoulders sagged. Once again, she was left behind.

    Boober had been watching, hoping Sage would finally just tell Janken that she wanted to be with him. He put a hand on her shoulder. "Sage."

    "Cookies won't help, Papa," she said softly.

    Wembley offered, "I'll talk to him."

    Sage shook her head. "No, I know what to do. I need to go now."

    "Attagirl," Red told her.

    Without further ado she left for the garden. She didn't need an escort. Fraggles had been openly friendly with the Gorgs as long as she had been alive; she had only heard stories about Fraggles being thumped, and few people bothered to tell those stories anymore except as cautionary tales about what a good idea it was to maintain the goodwill of the Gorgs, who after all grew the radishes that fed the Fraggles.

    She hurried through the caves. She did not want to wait any longer. She couldn't take any more disappointment! She rehearsed what she was going to say in her head, and as she did she realized how childish it sounded. He's my brother, I want him... but, she realized, he wasn't hers. No Fraggle could claim another; they could only give of themselves. It wasn't selfish of her to want him to spend some of his time with her... but you couldn't have everything you wanted. You had to be happy with what you had. If you kept wanting what you didn't have you'd never be satisfied.

    It was a sad, sobering thought. She felt like stopping and turning back, returning to her family and their sympathy, but no. She was tired of feeling left out. If Red could brave Outer Space, she could do this.

    She emerged into the Gorgs' garden. None of the Gorgs were about. That was good; she didn’t need any distractions. She hurried around the wall bordering the garden. The smell was rich here; vegetables and wood and leaf litter and other things, all gradually returning to the soil. Sage said, "Um, Madame Trash Heap?"

    The heap began to stir. Philo and Gunge, the Trash Heap's rodentlike heralds, popped up. "Hey, you got an appointment?" Philo asked.

    "No," Sage answered.

    "Huh," Gunge said. "They never do."

    "Do I need one?" she asked worriedly.

    "Well, if you had one I'd borrow it. I ain't never had an appointment before."

    Both laughed. Marjory the Trash Heap, who had risen to her full height, cleared her throat. Gunge said, "Little Fraggle, you are now in the august, ineffable—"

    Philo chimed in, "omnipotent, all-powerful—"

    "Both of those!"

    "Trash heap," they finished together, and finished with their signature jeer.

    The fanfare over, the Trash Heap said, "Now, what have you come to me for, little Fraggle?"

    Sage started, "At first I wanted to ask you about what to do to get my brother Janken to do something with me."

    "Something? Like what?" the Trash Heap asked.

    "Anything! Usually when he comes back from Outer Space we play together and swim and do stuff together. But this time he brought his lover from Outer Space with him, and he only wants to be with him."

    "Ah. Do I detect a hint of jealousy?" The Trash Heap said gently.

    "Yeah," Sage admitted.

    **

    Janken told Scooter as they climbed out of the tunnel and into a sunny patch of land, "This is the garden I told you about. Most of our food grows here." He listened for a moment, then said, "The Gorgs aren't around. They might be at the stream on the other side of the house."

    Scooter looked around. "Everything's so big!"

    "Yeah," Janken told him. They went over to the garden and walked down rows of plants bearing beachball-sized tomatoes, peapods a foot long, green squash the size of Gonzo's cannon, pumpkins that one could hollow out and live in... Janken was saying, "We take what we need, and since the Gorgs grow so much, there's plenty for everyone. We just have to be polite and not take too much of any one thing. And I bring seeds for Junior to try out in the garden. Some don't grow, but the ones that do get huge. Look at this!" he patted what looked like a thick white column rising from the earth.

    "Is that a giant rutabaga?"

    "It's a daikon. That's a kind of radish that's shaped like a carrot. In Outer Space they can grow longer than a Fraggle is tall. Here—well, they're a big hit," Janken finished, pleased to the point of smugness.

    Scooter caught sight of the door to the Gorgs' barnlike castle. Was that door really to scale? It had to be, which meant the Gorgs were at least twice as tall as Thog. Yikes!

    Janken took his hand and said, "C'mon, this way. The best part of the garden's around back."

    **

    Sage continued, "It was like Janken forgot about me. I was as nice as I could, and I did special things just for him. I even asked if I could come with him and Scooter, and he said no. He wasn't mean about it, but..." She stopped for a few seconds, then began again, "I wanted to be mad. Not at Janken, but at the Silly Creature for coming down here and taking my brother away from me. But that's not right. I can't be mad at Scooter. He's nice, and he and my brother are happy together. Before he met him, Janken was lonely. His postcards sounded sad. I wouldn't want him to be all alone out there again. I kind of wish Scooter hadn't come down here, but he has, so I guess there's no point in that."

    "Hey-" Philo began.

    Marjorie swatted him without looking away from Sage. "Then what do you want me to do? Use my magic to send him back to Outer Space?"

    Sage shook her head. "When Janken's here and doesn't do anything with me, I feel so lonely. I just want it to stop hurting. Tell me how to get used to it so I won't feel so crummy."

    The Trash Heap sat back. "That is something you must do yourself. I can only tell you the first and most important step you must take."

    "What is it?"

    "Turn around."

    "Turn-?"

    Philo and Gunge chorused, "The Trash Heap has spoken!"

    Sage had expected the burden to be on her, but she hadn't thought the Trash Heap would just send her away. She said halfheartedly, "Thank you," and turned to go.

    Janken and Scooter were standing by the wall. Janken opened his arms and beckoned to her.

    Sage ran over. Janken caught her in a hug and held her tight. He whispered, "Sorry, Sage. I didn't know."

    Her cheek pressed to his chest, she sniffled. Janken glanced over at Scooter. "We need a moment. Mind?"

    "Sure," Scooter replied.

    Janken walked with sake over past the bend in the garden wall. Then Scooter found himself face to face with a hairy, pungent, off-pink creature. "Lookit this, a critter from Outer Space."

    A gray one looked him up and down. "I thought you'd be taller."

    The Trash Heap beckoned to Scooter. "Come closer. It's not often we get visitors from afar."

    **

    Janken and Sage sat down side by side, their arms around each other. Janken said, "I'm sorry, Sage. I didn't realize how you felt. I do now." He gave her a little squeeze and said, "My pajamas were so soft, and they smell perfect. You must have used a new mossie. And the blueberry quickbread... you remembered that's my favorite. Thank you."

    There was so much she had planned to say to him, but it all boiled down to one thing. "You've got another family in Outer Space now. I'm glad that you're happy with them. But... while you're here, couldn't you be my big brother too?"

    He hugged her again. "I promise. Starting right now."

    **

    When Janken and Sage came back to the Trash Heap's territory, Scooter and the Trash Heap were in animated conversation. He was telling her about The Muppets and their show, and she was prompting him with the eagerness of a gossipy housewife. It was several minutes before she saw them. When she did she said, "Well, Sage, have you solved that little problem?"

    "Yeah. Thank you," Sage replied happily.

    Marjory addressed Janken. "What wisdom and advice do you need? Come on, don't be shy. I'm on a roll."

    "Actually, I don't need anything. I just wanted to introduce you two. Scooter can't possibly understand Fraggle Rock without seeing our oracle, the Great Trash Heap."

    She remarked, "And they say kids today have no respect. I'm very happy to meet your little friend. Don't be a stranger, eh?"

    "I won't," Scooter promised. The weirdness of conversing with a living garbage dump had worn off after the first minute. After all, he saw plenty of strangeness among the Muppets, and he'd certainly smelled worse things than compost.

    "Oh, I almost forgot!" Janken put his backpack on the ground and opened the back. He pulled out a small tree branch and said, "These are crabapples. I picked them in Outer Space. Then I found out that crabapples are too sour to eat." He handed her the branch.

    "Oh, how lovely! Exotic fruit." She admired the apples, which were the size of cherries in her large hands. Then she put it among her other trash, folded her arms, and said, "Now I have some special words of wisdom for all three of you."

    "Yes?" Janken asked.

    She made a shooing gesture with both hands. "Go and have some fun together! You're all family. Act like it."

    "The Trash Heap has spoken!"

    "We will!" Sage promised.

    The three left together. Janken had one arm around Sage's shoulders and was holding hands with Scooter on the other side. Marjory sighed. "It's so nice to solve a problem so quickly."

    Gunge remarked, "That orange one's the funniest looking Fraggle I've ever seen, though."

    "Yeah," Philo said, and they both snickered.

    *****

    Scooter and Skeeter are copyright © The Muppets Studio, LLC. All Fraggles except Janken, Sage, and Poncle are copyright © The Jim Henson Company, LLC. All copyrighted characters and properties are used without permission but with much respect and affection. Sage, Janken, and Poncle Fraggle and the overall story are copyright © Kim McFarland (negaduck9@aol.com). Permission is given by the author to copy it for personal use only.
    muppetfan24/7 and AlittleMayhem like this.
  4. muppetfan24/7 Well-Known Member

    Oh! This is fantasic! You are a great writer, Slackbot. I didn't know that Scooter looked like a funny-lkooking fraggle except the glasses (laughs)! So, more story please!
  5. charlietheowl Well-Known Member

    Awww! I'm glad Sage was able to resolve her differences with Janken. She was pretty mature when explaining things to the trash heap. Guess she takes after her mother and father.
    muppetfan24/7 likes this.
  6. The Count Moderator

    Yay! Scooter thinks talking garbage is novel? Oh, he wasn't there when the bags invaded the MuppeTelevision studio.
    *At the veggies in the garden, we sure grow 'em big here don't we?
    *Sits back to listen to Red's saga, noting the reactions by the rest of the clan.
    Glad Sage finally had her talk with Janken. Er, did you mean to say Janken took Sage to that little section around the wall before leaving Scooter with Marjory? Cause it says 'sake'.
    Ploobis: I'll drink to that.

    Thank you for posting, made me happy.
  7. mostlikemokey Active Member

    I'm so happy everything's worked out.
    Thanks for writing!
  8. muppetfan24/7 Well-Known Member

    I couldn't agree more, Mokey. There are times where I have to get goin' and determine myself whether or not I am worthy enough to be a Muppet fan. Oh! Wrong subject! That's silly! I cannot wait how Jaken and Sage get along as friends at Fraggle Rock.
  9. Slackbot Well-Known Member

    Thanks, guys! Glad you liked this chapter. I've been looking forward to writing it for a good while now. Getting Sage and Janken back together as siblings, plus having Scooter meet the Trash Heap. Fun!

    Good catch on the typo, Count. Yeah, that's supposed to be Sage, as Janken doesn't like sake. He's more of a champagne fan. Or spiked punch. Or Whoopee Water, which I am told is like champagne and Red Bull. Ew.

    Next up: family bonding, wacky hijinks, and Boober's temper!

    (I just re-watched Imaginationland. I hate South Park, but the sequences that take place in Imaginationland are such fun. I spent so much time pausing and playing spot-the-character. This time around I found Boober! Uh, a very large Boober, a casualty of the first battle. Oh well, he was probably an unseen part of the Happy Ending. And the speech at the end about imaginary characters being more influential than most real people was actually pretty good.)
  10. The Count Moderator

    Imagination Land was such awesomeness. "We have to get in there and stop our imagination from running wild... We have to kill our own imagination." Of course their Wiki has a rundown of who was on which side. Hope you also found :grouchy: and :scary: in there.
  11. Slackbot Well-Known Member

    That list is incomplete. I was reading through it and saw that they missed a lot of characters like the Hawaiian Punch guy, Oscar the Grouch, Uncle Remus, Daedalus, HR Pufnstuf, Boober Fraggle, and Obelix. (Obelix! How freakin' cool is that?!) But they did list The Scarecrow twice.
  12. muppetfan24/7 Well-Known Member

    Uh-oh! That is disappointing! However, I cannot believe you pointed out the character that are missing. Nice job!
  13. Slackbot Well-Known Member

    There are plenty more characters; I just listed a few I recalled off the top of my head. Looking at the history of that page, I see that at one time there used to be many, many more listed, including all I mentioned plus many more I didn't see. (Considering I have a cheap, small TV, they might well have been there and I just didn't see them.) Then the list was pared down ore the additions reversed or something. Shrug.
  14. muppetfan24/7 Well-Known Member

    I like your theories, Slackbot. What I want is I want more story please. Is it me that is begging or is it the graveling? (laughs)!
  15. mostlikemokey Active Member

    ooh...It's always fun to watch when Boober gets mad, though I always pity whoever it's directed at, lol!
  16. muppetfan24/7 Well-Known Member

    Well said, Mokey! I need more story. I am losing my patience here.
  17. Tom Fraggle Active Member

    Even though I've never signed up on here until now, I have read your stories and I must say you are a great storyteller. You really put a lot of life into your Fraggle stories and keeping them based on how a real Fraggle would behave and react to meeting new characters and seeing new places. Looking forward to the next chapter.

    Now that I've signed up for these forums, I'll try not to be lurking in the shadows and post something more often than never.
  18. Slackbot Well-Known Member

    Thank for your support!

    I'm working on the next part. Here's a teaser: it may involve swimming!
  19. muppetfan24/7 Well-Known Member

    :coy: Oh boy! Oh Boy! Oh Boy!
    I cannot wait for more! In "patience mode" until there's more story. Hmmph!
  20. Slackbot Well-Known Member

    Dear Autocorrect, I really did mean to type "Skeeter". Not "Sweeter."

    Writing is happening! Here's a bit of draft:

    *****

    Janken looked at it. It looked right, and Skeeter had left sneakerprints leading out of it. "All right, let's-"

    "Stop!"

    Startled, everybody looked back at the entrance to the T. Matthew Fraggle room. Boober, tail lashing angrily, was coming down the stairway. "So everyone's going to Outer Space, hmm? Or almost everybody?"

    "Papa-"

    "I know, I know, Boober the goof is a killjoy, he's too scared to be any fun!"

    Sage stepped forward and explained, "Papa! I didn't think you'd want to go. You hate Outer Space."

    "There's a good reason for that! It's dangerous and scary and full of germs and contaminated water."

    Janken said, "It's safe, I promise. I swam in it for hours and I feel great."

    "So far," Boober said darkly.

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