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Kermie's Girl (ushy-gushy fanfic)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by Ruahnna, Apr 21, 2006.

  1. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    And here I am, back to gush and review the chapter itself.

    1 The entire scene with Rowlf and Jolalene and the band, makes me smile.
    What makes it even better is cause last night, one of my two brothers took us and his current girlfriend to a little-known place called Famous Dave's for dinner. It's basically country BBQ fare and they had a bar with music... And the whole time while lost in a smile in the music, I kept thinking, "this is the kind of place :sympathy: and the dogs would probably be playing at in one of those Southern states that start with an M or other letter of the alphabet."
    Okay, so maybe not in such detail, but you get the pointed reference to an earlier chapter of this opus.

    2 Posted by Ru-thless:
    "and—besides—it was the first moment in several days when she'd genuinely felt she had the press at her feet and on their knees—where they belonged."
    Heh, a sentiment befitting the queen bee herself—or should that be queen sow?

    3 Posted by Someone to Ru and someone to praise:
    "Life's a bowl of cherries. What'd you want to tell me?"
    :fanatic: Wow, she knows my song!
    :grouchy: Life's a bowl of cherries allright... And it's got lots of pits in it, heh heh heh.

    4 Posted by Kill-dashian:
    ""Well, she's howling like she's mortally wounded," Rory said. "Then she'll die from it or get well," Piggy snapped."
    This sentiment makes me grin. Plus, it reminds me of one of my mom's signature sayings... "No hay mal que dure cien años ni cuerpo que lo resista" which basically translates into "There's no ill (or malady) that lasts a hundred years nor a body that'll withstand it that long."
    Simply put, either you'll get over it or you won't whatever's ailing you at the moment... So chin up and go about your day as usual.

    5 Posted by Ms. Richmondes to Rags:
    ""Somebody got off at the intersection of grumpy and grouchy today,” he murmured."
    :grouchy: Now that sounds like my kind of place.
    :super: Isn't there a Walgreens there?
    :shifty: More like a 'Wrong-greens'.

    *Notices with a smile how you keep going back to lines from Walter's song. Also liked Piggy's rant, it works here at this moment in the fic.

    6 Posted by Ru-full:
    "Rory wondered if her frog knew how tough it had been, and how tough she had been and made a mental note to tell him when he got up here. If he ever did."
    That's a ponient moment, reflecting on what both frog and pig have gone through and missed out on and the heartaches caused to both during their differing work venues.

    Rully liked how Clifford's handling his thoughts regarding Tricia.

    7 As for that black-haired waitress...
    a. For some reason, I'm picturing this character as resembling the black-haired waitress at the bar in Cool World.
    b. What's a shirtdress?
    c. "Almost-shaped eyes", "almost" shaped like what? *Thinks you meant "almond-shaped".
    d. "Because more personal", again, "because" why? *Thinks you meant "became more personal."
    e. "Clifford smiled. Working in a dessert probably got a little old, even if you spent most of it in air-conditioned comfort."
    "Dessert"? Okay, I'll just point you in the direction of my post over in the thread discussing the trailer for the new movie, Muppets Most Wanted, over in the Muppet Appearances section.
    *Grabs some cherries from that bowl mentioned a while back to put on top of my sand dune sundae.

    8 *Sighs. Clifford's exit reminds me of a similar experience one that I don't think I handled well or was rather just shocked/scared of at the time it happened.

    9 Posted by Fall of the Ruman Empire:
    "“Good plan,” Marty said, then strove to make his voice more hearty."
    "More hearty"?
    UD: I believe the Bard said it best, "I come not to praise him, but to bury the use of proper superlatives."
    Me: He actually said that?
    UD: Well... I'm paraphrasing.

    10 Like WMG, my internals are on alert at that letter from Rainbow Productions' accountant. Mmm, it might warrant a run through the Bat-puter first chance we get.
    And hey... A post from Gina not complaining about why she didn't get the update regarding the new chapter! Miracles do happen.

    11 Posted by Kermie's Girl Writer:
    "She looked him up and down, but stopped short of rolling her eyes. "Don't have to," she said. "You're here to see the diva." "What makes you so sure?" He was unsure what had "made" him, and curious to hear what she'd say. "The trenchcoat," she said dismissively. "It's not the trenchcoat she liked—it's the frog who wears it. You guys will never learn." And that, Scribbler could not argue with."
    What "made" Scribbler indeed... Is his shame with himself making him burn as brightly as that tiger tiger in the forest of the night?
    And I absolutely adore the ticket window lady's statement of fact regarding the littany of mooks who think they can worm the diva away into their arms.

    There, done, thanks for another enjoyable chapter. :) :) :)
     
  2. Ruahnna

    Ruahnna Well-Known Member

    Writers use everything that happens to us. We do. And my envisoning Rowlf and Jo and the band on tour started in a place much like that.

    You know I love her, but Piggy really does think the world should not only be her oyster, but that someone else should catch it, shell it, cook it, serve it and clean up after in the kitchen. It's just the way she is, bless her. And usually there's a line of those willing to comply....

    See my comment above. And we especially love to use something that has a different meaning to fans or readers, or comes from some other work that we like. It's like the circle of life. (Oops! Did it again....)

    My favorite new version of that same sentiment? "Cowboy up!" from White Collar.

    Okay--the pun police now have an APB for you because of that Richmondes to Rags line....

    I'm working on their reunion, I swear. Stay with me--the pay-off will be worth it, I think.

    Countie! Are you holding out on us? You must tell what happened! (The last time someone was openly flirting with me--well, several someones. Well, a table full of Klingons--it's a long story--I totally didn't catch on. Only when Hubby appeared on the scene and they scattered did I clue in. For most of us, being married seriously undermines out practice at flirting.)

    How funny you should say that! It's entirely likely that we are going to see the caped crusaders before too long.

    Too true. Kermit has always been Piggy's one and only, regardless of what he's wearing or not wearing.
     
    The Count and miss kermie like this.
  3. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    You know I'm sticking with this fic till the very end. Just try to get rid of me. What, pun police you say? Gentlemen, if you put me under arrest, then your careers will be arrested as well. Now do you want that on your consciences? Unemployment? This close to the holidays? Please sirs, don't ask me to go gently into that night, to cause your own disarming from the force. *Pun police agree, then go back to HQ.
    :batty: And if that hadn't vorked?
    Meh, I can always use the ol' Sithlord stranglehold.
    *Waits for more KG whenever it's finished and ready, even if it should come almost at dawn like 4 AM again. :p
     
    miss kermie likes this.
  4. lady piggy

    lady piggy Well-Known Member

    Wow a gal finally gets a bf , then completely misses a chapter from the beautiful love story " Kermie's Girl ( ushy-gushy fanfic)" . So much to say , poor Piggy shes really in a pickel . But im pretty sheer she can handle it , i mean come on she is "Miss Piggy" the original diva .I must say Im really enjoying the direction this storie is going , as always . :) lovely chapter
     
    miss kermie likes this.
  5. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    Can we please have some "good" fanfic for a change? Not that that's a shot at your superb writing Aunt Ru, the heavens would strike me down for implying such a thing. I'm just tired from having to flush away so much spammage in this section today.
    *Leaves some brownies.
     
    miss kermie likes this.
  6. newsmanfan

    newsmanfan Well-Known Member

    --------------
    Feedback: Ch. 151 (wow! It just struck me again how EPIC this story is...)

    Hmm. Sounds like the bar may be offering Rowlf a different sort of full-time gig. I know he'd never leave the Muppet troupe, but with all the nonsense going on, I could actually see him considering it briefly.

    Piggy's snappish comments to Rory and Darcy had me laughing. I think Miss P and I have the same attitude toward whiny, overprivileged harpies. EVERY "reality tv star" needs to hear "oh, get over yourself". Repeatedly. Good for her for not giving a snort about the gossip.

    The studio has slashed Kermit's credit? No...that can't be good. Makes me think the Mysterious Big Uggy has claws in the studio's finance office as well as elsewhere around the lot. That would indeed be hitting Rainbow Productions where it hurts. Loved the interplay between Marty and Scooter. :)

    Aww, Clifford, you're in the middle of a romance! Embrace it -- and HER! Rather sweet seeing the cool cucumber --er, catfish -- uh, what IS Clifford, anyway? -- sweet, still, seeing him trying to come to grips with some serious romantic jitters. More power to the purple one.

    And what's THIS? One recalcitrant renegade reporter, tasking the ticket-taker with a mysterious missive? WILL our pig receive this secret summons, and will she send said Scribbler over the moon for it -- and NOT in a good way? Tuning in next chapter to find out...

    -------------
     
    Ruahnna and The Count like this.
  7. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    *Hops for a new chapter to be posted soon-ish. Rully miss this novel and all its glorious nuances.
     
    Ruahnna likes this.
  8. ReneeLouvier

    ReneeLouvier Well-Known Member

    It would be so so so awesome to have a new chapter posted soon. I've gotten so big, it's hard to move easily anymore....and I'm merely waiting till I go into labor, awaiting my little bundle of joy. Her names gonna be Lisa Marie Ure. And she's due on November 8th.
     
    Ruahnna likes this.
  9. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    The authoress has commented the next chapter is under work, but speculation runs rampant as to when it will be finished and when it will be postedgiven her current schedule.


    And congratulations on the news Sara, we'll definitely have to celebrate Ure entry into motherhood.
    *Leaves a few bottles of Death Valley Draft (blackberry-raspberry or loganberry frozen milkshake).
     
  10. Ruahnna

    Ruahnna Well-Known Member

    (Yay for Sara's News!)


    Chapter 152: Conflicted Schedules


    “But, Beakie, I’m sure if you hold it far enough away while I pour it won’t—“
    Honeydew’s admonition was cut short as someone rapped smartly on the laboratory door. They turned to look at it, then back to each other.
    “Me me mee Meep!” said Beaker firmly, and put the glass container full of viscous fluid down on the table.
    “Oh, very well,” said Honeydew. “Since we have company.”
    Company was a relative term. Gonzo and Rizzo stood in the doorway looking deceptively normal, although Rizzo’s inquisitive nose was twitching.
    “What’s that smell?” he muttered under his breath.
    “I told you I bought the ointment already,” Gonzo groused back, sotto voce. “These things don’t clear up overnight—“
    “Well, hellooo, gentlemen. What brings you to Muppet Labs?”
    Gentlemen was apparently a relative term also, but the boys came in and made themselves nervously at home. After a couple of false starts, Rizzo finally gave up looking nervously behind him and simply held on to his tail when he couldn’t shake the idea that something, somewhere in the lab was watching it hungrily. If Bunsen noticed, he didn’t comment, but Rizzo was pretty certain that Beaker winked at him in approval.
    They talked about the positive media campaign, and Honeydew took them around the lab. After about 20 minutes, when the first real conversational lull hit, Gonzo and Rizzo looked at each other. Rizzo nodded and Gonzo cleared his throat nervously, then turned back to Honeydew.
    “Um…,” the whatever began.
    Honeydew looked at their company, edging closer to Beaker. “Beakie,” he said out of the corner of his mouth. “I don’t think this is just a social visit.”
    “Um, no,” said Gonzo. “Look—we want your help with something.”
    “Me mee mee mee,” said Beaker.
    “Beakie’s right,” said Honeydew. “We aim to serve. What can we do for you?”

    “That must be the food,” said Scooter. They had already downed a pot of bad coffee and a stale danish between them, but they were restless. The work had been good, but slow—painstakingly slow—and they were antsy and ready for pretty much any change of pace.
    Pretty much.
    Scooter came back into the kitchen with the look of a traitor on his face, followed by a group of somber-suited men and one woman in a blue serge suit dress. They stood around awkwardly, not making the right kind of small talk. Eventually, the pod of blue wool sent forth a pseudopod in the form of a spokesman—form only, substance lacking. He looked—not at Kermit—but at a point just over the amphibian’s left shoulder.
    “Um, hello Kermit. Nice to…um…see you again.”
    Kermit sat up straighter in his chair, and Scooter looked at him, wide-eyed and uncertain. "I don’t know," his eyes said plainly. Kermit lifted one finger, letting Scooter know not to sweat it.
    It took Kermit a minute, but he finally put all the faces together with names in his head, cursing the interruption. He knew that sifting through his memory for the name of his financial backers was going to cause him to forget something that might actually be important.
    “Can I help you?” Kermit asked. His voice was puzzled, polite, but not-quite-friendly. Visits from the money people rarely boded well, and Kermit was in a bit of a mood, but at least he made an effort. The man in charge—that is, the man in front—started to look over his shoulder at his compatriots, wanting guidance, but stopped himself with a visible effort. He’d obviously drawn the short straw.
    “We…well, we’d like to talk to you about the movie,” he said, then stopped, not sure how to proceed.
    “Of course,” said Kermit. He folded his hands together over his abdomen and waiting, offering nothing.
    When it became evident that Kermit wasn’t going to say anything, the other man shifted uncomfortably and tried again. “Um, well, there have been some, um, items in the news lately—“
    “About the movie,” Kermit said. His expression was agreeable, but his voice was most decidedly not.
    “Um, well…um, not—that is, not about the movie exactly.”
    Again, Kermit waited, saying nothing, and Scooter didn’t know if he wanted to run and hide in the break room or break out cheering. They had picked a bad day to come and try to call Kermit to accounting, and while Kermit’s assistant didn’t want to burn any bridges today, he wouldn’t have minded seeing a few of them rock a little.
    “If you’d like a few…days to figure out—“
    “Um,” the man began, startling a little. Scooter could almost swear the man had been prodded from behind. “It’s just….”
    Kermit had learned a long time ago that, sometimes, if someone was determined to have a hissy fit or start an argument, it was better just to let them get good and started before weighing in. Once you had a few more facts on the table, it became easier to know if you should apologize, run, or start yelling. Those who had worked with Kermit had learned a long time ago that you could do almost anything you wanted until you pushed the frog (or the pig) into arm-waving hysteria, and then all bets were off. Unfortunately (for them), their erstwhile callers had not actually worked with Kermit. If they had—if any of them had—they would have known that Kermit could out-wait them and would have gotten right to the point.
    Getting right to the point seemed to be a difficult thing, or at least an uncomfortable one. The man hemmed and hawed to the point that Scooter almost felt sorry for him. Almost. But Scooter, while he didn’t know what this was about—exactly—felt fairly certain that it had something to do with the budget and the publicity and Miss Piggy. He was also fairly certain that Kermit, if pushed too far, might say or do something that would make things worse. Scooter would have followed the little amphibian into Hades if it came to it, but he had sort of hoped it wouldn’t come to it right now. He groped around for something useful to do and found he was gripping his phone a little too tight. It beeped discreetly and the last phone number called came up. Scooter’s eyes widened in surprise, then he fought back a grin. Subtly, his thumbs moved over the buttons, his message short and sweet. He hit "Send" and hoped for the best.

    Side mirrors on cars usually have a little disclaimer that says, “Objects in mirror are closer than they appear". While things seemed to be getting back to normal the next morning, there probably should have been a sign that said, “Objects appear more normal than they are". Everyone would have been happy to adjust to the new normal if they could simply get to it, but the dust was still settling all around.
    The show had gone well last night, the fans unusually loud, and Piggy’s blue mood had evaporated. Fan attention—the adoring kind—had always been a panacea for what she really wanted: the steady, long-burning love of a good amphibian. Well, one particular amphibian. But the crowds and the attention and the visit from her friends had all conspired to bolster her flagging spirits and Piggy was feeling pretty sassy as she shopped for hosiery at a fancy boutique. She had always been a fast healer, and her scraped knees were looking amazingly whole, but she was hoping for a slightly darker shade of hosiery to take her through the final stages, keeping her injuries and her ordeal a secret.
    You could tell Kermit now, her mind prompted, but she brushed it away. This pair had little crystals on them, making your legs shimmer. She thought about them, but decided her legs were fetching enough without further embellishment and passed them by. There were textured pair, hosiery and tights, and she looked at a cute pair of deep purple cable-knit tights. Those would be adorable with her black miniskirt and lilac off-the-shoulder sweater. She put them in her basket, still looking. There were fishnets in every color, but she already had fishnets in every color. She finally found a table with samples of the different colors. Nude? Or Almost Nude? Suntan? Too dark in winter. She needed Black and Almost Black, but not Very Black. Very Black was okay for mascara and tights, but not hose. She put a few more items in her basket and then picked up two color samples, looking for a sales clerk. One appeared as though conjured out of thin air.
    “May I help you?” asked the young man. Inside, he was wildly excited to recognize his client, but outwardly he was the picture of professionalism.
    “Moi is trying to decide between Nude and Almost Nude,” she said, then giggled when it came out sounding naughty. The sales clerk smiled and bit his lip. It was impossible not to.
    “Well,” he said, his eyes impish. “I’ve heard from clients that there are some situations where Almost Nude is the same as Nude.”
    “But other situations where Almost Nude just won’t do?” Piggy asked.
    “So I’ve been told, Ma’am,” the young man said. “What would you prefer?”
    Piggy started to say “Nude", but thought better of it. “The second one,” she murmured, blushing prettily. “Moi would like a dozen pair.”
    “Excellent,” said the young man. “I’ll have them at the counter when you’re ready.”
    Piggy looked around, then smiled. “Moi is ready now,” she said.
    “Splendid,” said the sales associate. “I’ll meet you as soon as I’ve fetched them.” He disappeared into the back and Piggy wandered to the front of the store, looking out the glass onto the busy sidewalk.
    He was quick, but not quick enough. Piggy saw the flash of his coat as he darted around the corner, and her mouth dropped open in surprise. She ran toward the door—through the alarm—and stopped and dropped her purchases on the floor. It took her a moment to disentangle her purse, then she was out the door like a shot, standing on the sidewalk glaring the way he had come.
    “I saw you, you little cretin!” she cried. No one on the sidewalk so much as paused. This was New York, and nobody gave a tinker’s darn or a rat’s patootie about someone shouting—even a famous lady pig. “Don’t you—don’t you dare show your face!”
    She waited, not sure if he’d moved out of range or not. Piggy was about to give up and return to the store and her purchases when she heard him.
    “If I don’t show my face, can I talk to you?”
    She whirled around, looking for him. He was nowhere in sight.
    “You may not!” she cried. “You can fall into the nearest volcano and burn to a crisp! You can be attacked by a thousand little lap dogs!” She thought of Foo-Foo and her sharp little teeth, the image making her feel better. “You can—“
    “Then can I tell you something?”
    Good grief, the little louse had nerve. “If you told me the time of day, I’d check my watch!”
    “You don’t wear a watch.”
    Piggy huffed, looking around for Fleet’s distinctive mop of silver hair, a flash of purple skin. He was nowhere she could see. “Well, I’d check my phone!”
    “Speaking of phones. I guess you chucked mine?”
    “You and your stupid phone can drop—“
    “Dead. Yeah. I heard.”
    Piggy felt like her head was going to explode. If she could lay eyes on him, she’d rip him limb from limb, starting with his writing arm. Her heart was racing, her chest heaving. “Well, hear this!” she shouted. On the sidewalk, people moved around her like she was a rock in a stream, mostly uninterested and uninvolved. “You are the vilest, most miserable—“
    “I’m sorry.”
    “Don’t you—“
    “I’m sorry, Missy—geez I’m sorry. I can’t—it was too good to pass up. I had to.” He wanted to say, “My boss made me", but it wouldn’t give him any brownie points.
    “You promised,” Piggy said. “You said you wouldn’t hurt him!”
    It is entirely possible that the tide of humanity on the sidewalk, watching a famous lady pig shouting at an invisible conversational partner was beginning to attract notice. Walking slowed slightly near her, and there were a few people lingering at the light poles, pretending to talk on their phones.
    Scribbler blinked. Had he hurt the frog? As far as he could tell, she was brand-loyal-Kermit more than ever, so the damage had been fleeting, at best. “I knew you wouldn’t believe it. Not for a minute.” He had known. Huh—this telling the truth stuff was easier and easier.
    “You ruined our interview!”
    “I did not. I saw your interview, and you were marvelous.”
    Piggy blinked. It was hard to know what to say. He turned everything back on her, made everything seem so…reasonable. “You made him unhappy!” Good grief, she was losing her touch. If she’d been on top of her game, she’d have thought of something suitably scathing to say, something that would make him writhe in—oh. Oh. She took a deep breath, and when she spoke, her voice was unsteady. “You hurt Moi,” she said, making her voice carry like she was in a thousand-seat theater.
    The silence was so deep she thought at first she’d scored a lethal hit. Good, she thought. Let the miserable excuse for a journalist bleed to death from a thousand paper cuts! Let him
    “I know.” That was better. He sounded like he was dying, like he wished the earth would swallow him whole. Good. Let it. “Missy, I’m sorry. Please….” He did not know what to say.
    The door of the boutique opened and there was her young man again, looking worried at seeing her wild-eyed and vibrating with fury.
    “Miss Piggy? I have your purchases—“
    “Yeah, yeah. Keep your shirt on. I’m coming.” She stomped back into the store. Scribbler waited a full ten minutes after she left before coming out of hiding. He’d been wedged into an architectural kink in the side of a building, a tall spindly plant blocking him from her view. His face burned and he slouched down the sidewalk, needing to get somewhere where he felt safe for a while.
    Although he’d taken a taxi over, he walked back, enjoying the discomfort of the long trek on his tired limbs and feet. When he finally pushed open the door of his apartment, he was exhausted, and Gladys and Harve looked at him in concern.
    “Fleet, honey--?” said Gladys.
    “How’d it go?” said Harve, desperate for details.
    Scribbler’s weary face broke into a bleak smile. “Well,” he said, “she talked to me.”

    “What the dickens do you think he’s still doing in New York?” ask Frosty.
    Jack pushed his hand through his thick hair, then smoothed it when he realized what he’d just done. “There’s no telling with Seymour,” he said. The thought didn’t cheer them.
    “Well, it’s not really like we need him in his office,” said Frosty, but he sounded doubtful.
    “No,” said Jack. “Spring’s covered, but Summer’s only partially filled. I’d like to know what’s coming up, wouldn’t you?”
    “Of course,” said Frosty. He frowned. “You know, I was talking to Mabel the other day.”
    “Did you tell the wife about your pie indiscretion?”
    “I tell my wife about all my indiscretions,” said Frosty, grinning. There wasn’t a soul who knew him who doubted that he was—still—head over heels in love with his wife of 35 years.
    “That’s because all of your indiscretions involve pie.”
    Frosty clutched his heart like he’d been shot. “Ouch—you got me.”
    “So what did Mabel think Junior was up to up there in the Big Apple?”
    “Well, we figured he’s probably mooning around after Miss Piggy, trying to get in to see her show.”
    Jack snorted. “Good luck with that. They’ve been sold out for weeks. You think he’ll get in?”
    Frosty was quiet, pulling at his lower lip thoughtfully. “I think,” he said slowly, “that, despite the fact that he’s a poser and a bit of a whiner, Seymour usually manages to get what he wants. So my best guess is—yes, he’ll find a way to get to her.”
    Jack sighed. “Well, maybe if he gets to see the show, he’ll give up and come home.”
    Frosty laughed and clapped him on the back. “Maybe,” he said. “But giving up isn’t his strong suit.”

    Scooter had to give it to him. The man was still plugging away, still trying to get to the point without inciting a riot in waiting companions and still manage not to end up on the blistering end of an angry amphibian client.
    “I think it’s best,” he said. He’d used that particular phrase several times, and Kermit was ready to blow up at him. Best? Best for whom?"
    “I’m not sure you—or your associates—are in any positions to know what’s best for the movie.”
    “Well, we’ve all decided—“
    “I don’t actually answer to you,” Kermit said mildly. Kermit was usually low-key, polite, urbane. Yes, he occasionally erupted into arm-waving hysteria backstage, but in the boardroom and the ballroom he was typically pleasant and collected, easy-going almost to a fault. The fact that the temperature of this room, the barometer of this meeting had suddenly shifted went unnoticed by no one. "That is, no one but Scooter."
    Scooter’s eyes grew wide behind his glasses and the collar of his polo felt tight and pinched. He opened his mouth to take in more air—to warn them or Kermit or…whoever. Did he need to warn Kermit of exploding into a diatribe that might bring the budget crashing to its knees, or should he be trying to warn the backers not to push a frog who was already pushed past the hurting point.
    “Well, no,” one of the men admitted, “but you do realize we have a vested interest—“
    “In the movie. Yes, I know that.”
    Scooter felt am unreasonable urge to fling himself down on the table, hurling his body between these two factions as though covering a grenade. He felt like hiding under the table and covering his ears, waiting to see what the fallout had been rather than suffering through it, but Scooter was an honorable man, and honorable men do what honor requires.
    “Gentlemen,” he said firmly, glad his voice didn’t quaver. “I think we all have a common goal here, but not all of our goals are the same.”
    The men frowned and looked at him, not sure whether to cede the floor or try to fight for it. They rustled, looking uncomfortable, then a new one opened his mouth—
    “Hey, look! A party!” said Marty, trundling in the door. “And you didn’t invite little ol’ me? Good thing I happened by—huh?”
    Scooter tried to look innocent, biting the inside of his lip to hide his grin. The cavalry had arrived.

    Dr. Teeth had a bit of a dilemma on his hands. He’d been offered two very gracious invitations, but he was one musician, and—magic fingers or no—he could not be in two places at one time. And the lovely ladies seemed inseparable. If he demurred to one, he would have to demur to the other. His afternoon schedule suddenly opened up.
    “I am afraid,” he said, letting regret cloud his words, “that I cannot accept an afternoon engagement. My schedule seems rather full.”
    Both of the women looked crestfallen, one pouting on each arm.
    “Oh, phooey,” said Harriet.
    “What a shame!” said Dorothy. She looked at her roommate and her pout became more pronounced. “And we were so hoping you’d take us up on our offer.”
    We? Our offer? He looked from one of them to the other.
    “Um…," he began. “Do you mean—?”
    They smiled at each other, and him. “We do,” they said, and giggled.
    “Well, ladies,” he said, grinning his Cheshire grin. “I seem to have an opening in my schedule after all….”

    By the time the bureaucrats had been ushered out the door, tails between their legs, the food was cold, and Kermit still hadn’t talked to Piggy yet today. Scooter made a fresh pot of joe while Marty rummaged around in the fridge for cream and sugar and they waved him off as he wandered out to make his call. He was still seething, but he determined to push all thoughts, all irritations aside and make this just what it was, a check-in call with his wonderful, beautiful wife where nothing more important than mush was discussed. He could do that. At least, he thought he could. He punched the button, held the phone to his aural organ.
    Piggy saw Kermit’s picture flash up on her phone and groaned. She couldn’t talk to Kermit now. She was too angry, and she might blurt out something about Fleet and their encounter on the street. She hadn’t told him about the pig-napping, her injuries, the phone and Fleet and—she couldn’t think of one safe topic. Not one. She couldn’t think of anything that wasn’t—
    “Hellooo, Mon Capitan,” Piggy said. “How is my wonderful, handsome frog today?”
    “He’s great,” said Kermit, then grinned. “He’s busy. And lonely. How are you holding up?”
    “Moi is busy. And lonely for a certain frog of the amphibious persuasion.” It was teasing though, not a complaint—well, not much of one.
    “Howard and Thoreau made it home. He called and said you looked radiant.” He smiled, his expression softening. “Everybody always says that—“
    “—so it must be so.” This was fine, Piggy thought. Small talk. Nothing to it.
    “So….”
    “So, um, well.”
    “Show go okay last night?”
    “Yes. Moi was wonderful. Everybody else was great.”
    “Good.”
    “How’s the editing going?”
    “Good, good. Scooter and I are working hard.”
    “Moi is glad.”
    “Yeah, me too.”
    I had a huge argument with Scribbler today. He tried to talk to me, even though I’m mad at him, even though I’m not supposed to be talking to him because…and, and some awful man tried to grab me, and I scraped my knees and that awful Kardashian woman was making moves on you and the reporters were all mean to me today and Marty says I’m starting a PR war and I ripped a pair of my brand-new hose!
    “The days are so boring without you. I miss you.”
    “My days aren’t boring, but my nights are long,” Kermit admitted. The financial backers are terrified by rumors that you’re divorcing me because you’ve got a hot new job and a hunky new co-star and you’re mad because I got photographed by about sixty-thousand people with my hand on some starlet’s backside and my presentation at the Academy Awards fell flat because you weren’t with me and my lunch is cold and I’m lonely and miserable without you. “Have you been shopping lately?” Piggy always loved to talk about shopping.
    “Moi went to a hosiery shop today,” Piggy said. That was all she thought she could manage. “Is everybody there okay?”
    “Well, Gonzo has some sort of rash.”
    “Of course he does.”
    “And—"
    “Oh!” She had some happy news, something she could share. “Kermie! You’ll never guess who I ran into yesterday!”
    A dozen hunky actor-types swam in front of his vision, making him see green. “I’ll bet I can’t,” he said, trying to sound enthusiastic.
    “I ran into Mr. Strathers,” she said. “Isn’t that funny? He’s here scouting talent for the casino.”
    Thank goodness—a neutral topic. Nothing bad about running into Mr. Strathers! “Wow, that’s great, Sweetheart. Is he going to come to the show?”
    “I don’t think so,” said Piggy. “The tickets are all sold out.”
    “Except for mine,” said Kermit. She could hear him smiling.
    “Yes. Vous will always have a seat when you come. When are you coming?” Oh! She had not meant to ask. She had tried so hard not to ask. She hoped she didn’t sound whiny, or demanding, or mad….
    Kermit closed his eyes, feeling like a heel. Here, he’d been worried she was angry with him for not being there, and she was being a total brick about it. She’d been sad the other day when everything was going wrong, but today she didn’t even sound like she missed him much. She’d certainly acclimated well.
    “Soon,” Kermit said. “Scooter’s looking for a ticket in the near future.”
    “Oh—I’m so glad!”
    “Well, it’s a shame Mr. Strathers can’t come to see you while he’s up there.”
    “Yes,” said Piggy, feeling suddenly uncomfortable. She covered it with chatter. “But maybe he will get a ticket. And I can tell him you said hello.”
    “That would be great. It sure was great working on the Christmas show, wasn’t it? Doing live theater again—oh, well, I guess it’s not that big a deal to you, now that you’re on Broadway.” There was an edge to his voice and he hated it, but it was a done deal, now. You can’t snatch words back.
    “Working with you is always a big deal,” said Piggy. “Especially working with your wardrobe budgets!” Oh! That had sounded catty. She put her hand over her lips.
    “You make everything look wonderful,” said Kermit, contrite.
    “You make everything wonderful,” said Piggy.
    They were subdued as they said their goodbyes.
    “Love you.”
    “Miss you.”
    “Talk to you soon.”
    Kermit walked back to the kitchen, cursing his lapse. Both men looked up quickly (and guiltily) when he walked in. They’d obviously been discussing him, or them, or both.
    “How’s our girl?” said Marty. “Everything okay?”
    “Oh, sure,” said Kermit, forcing a smile. “Everything’s just great.”
     
    miss kermie, lady piggy and The Count like this.
  11. lady piggy

    lady piggy Well-Known Member

    It's always a joy to read a new chapter from this epic story .aww poor Kermit and scooter , if only those people knew the truth instead of those lies in the news.I love the objects and mirrors expression , very refreshing .oh and when piggy said " if you told me the time of day ' I'd check my watch" , wow that's was just wow (^_^) . Hehe loved the scene where Piggy is picking out hosiery , lol " Nude" and " Almost Nude" , might as well get " kinda sorta Nude" . It's pretty much in between the two ;) .oh fleet , fleet fleet fleet fleet. Really ,what did you expect , in a way i feel bad for him.( not that much) and Piggy , i just want to hug her .( i always want to hug her ) And the Kermit and Piggy convo( want to hug them both )
    An extraordinary chapter Miss Ru -----`--(@
     
  12. Ruahnna

    Ruahnna Well-Known Member

    This is just to apologize for the sad, sorry state of my editing on that last post. Even for me, that was pretty atrocious. I had been working on that post for some time and was really anxious to get it out. Mea culpa, mea culpa.

    I have become quite spoiled by a couple of other sites where it is possible to edit your posts after the fact.
     
  13. Muppetfan44

    Muppetfan44 Well-Known Member

    Ooh what a frustrating chapter, full of romantic angst! Really hope that these two can be reunited soon and that they spill the beans to one another- I hate seeing them unhappy and far apart from each other ;(
     
  14. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    After re-reading...

    Er, Gonzo... You're going to Bunsen for help in clearing up a rash? Didn't know Bunsen's degree extended to medicinal sciences as well. Then again, I'd be a bit wary of whatever cream he hands you, it did make Beaker half-vanish.

    "Scooter would follow Kermit into Hades if it came to it, but he hoped it wouldn't come to that."
    Love this line.

    Fleet keeps playing both angles of his previous and current love-hate hate-love journalist-boss relationship with Piggy. And it gives him added depth, even when we the readers want to hate him for what he's done as well at times.

    Both the dialogue between the other Palace owners and the frog and pig... *Notices dark clouds overhead. That folks, is what we call foreshadowing.

    Dr. Teeth, you dog. *Can't help thinking of that old gum ad, "Double your pleasure, double your fun."

    Ergh Kermit! You just fell victim to the age-old Chinese proverb, "open mouth, insert flipper". Now how are you going to get yourself out of this fine pot of gumbo?
    :) Never say that, I had a bad enough time dealing with Doc Hopper, chasing me for my legs.
    :mad: People chase me for my legs all the time.
    *:cluck: agrees with the sentiment, then giggles knowingly.
    :) Sheesh.

    Thank you for posting, I've been missing your fic for the longest time.
     
    Ruahnna likes this.
  15. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    Bumping this back up to the top because it's just too wonderful a fic to be buried on Page 2 of the Fanfic & Fanart section under a ton of multiple-posted and deleted garbage.

    BTW: Check ABC Family's schedule, they were airing Grease 2 earlier this morning, maybe it'll get repeated throughout the month before starting their annual Countdown to Christmas on the 20th.
     
  16. WebMistressGina

    WebMistressGina Well-Known Member

    So I finally got around to reading this and O. M. G. Stuff is hitting the fan on a constant basis now, ain't it??

    The movie is in serious trouble I think, both internally and externally and whoa nelly, if the back and forth isn't gonna catch up!

    Awesome possums, as always!

    *pokes Ed* Don't think I didn't see what you said. :mad: Okay, I didn't until today, but I saw it. *poke*
     
  17. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    What... What did I say? *Sighs, needs someone to help with numbering problem.
     
  18. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    *Hopes to have a good chunk of chaptered fic to tide us over past Thanksgiving. :hungry:
     
  19. Ruahnna

    Ruahnna Well-Known Member

    Hi folks! Your wish, Countie, is my command, but a couple of things first.

    My laptop is dead, and SOME of my future-written story is in limbo, but I'm pretty sure it's a temporary problem. We'll see--and I have copies of my posted KG files and MOST of my future-written bits. No sense wailing and pitching a fit.

    I haven't forgotten you guys or this story--I appreciate you reminding me you are here and still reading. Hugs all around.

    And now....

    Chapter 153: Banking the Home Fires

    Clifford slid down on the couch and rested his head against the back. He pulled a pillow into his lap and closed his eyes. Mabel was in the kitchen, rattling pots and pans, and he heard the hiss and whir of the coffee pot. Iced coffee with a little something-something sounded pretty darn good about now. He wasn't used to this heat, and it seemed he'd been on an adrenaline rush since he arrived. Or maybe that was just a hormone rush, he thought with a grin.
    A few minutes later, Mabel came over with a plate of fresh kiwi, strawberries and apples slices, but one look at Clifford's closed eyes and she started to edge backwards, quiet as, well, a mole.
    “I'm not asleep,” he said. “I'm just studying the inside of my eyelids.”
    Mabel smiled and put the plate down on the coffee table. “Sounds like a good pasttime. Why don't you stretch out and take a nap? I brought you a snack. Supper's not coming any time soon.”
    “I'm not really hungry,”Clifford mumbled, but he opened his eyes and looked at the fruit. It looked delicious. “Well,” he mumbled. “Maybe just a bite.”
    Mabel laughed and sat down beside him on the couch, patting his knee with her little hand. She watched him pick up a handful of fruit with his long fingers and eat it with obvious relish.
    “You know,” he said. “At home, nobody slices apples and kiwis for me.”
    “I'll bet nobody even peels you a grape,” Mabel said, laying on the sympathy.
    “You got that right,” he said. “Are you sure you want to be this nice to me?”
    Mabel laughed. “Eh, helps me keep in practice for the really important people,” she teased. She was quiet a moment. “I'm glad you came to see me, Honey,” she said.
    Clifford was quiet for a moment. “It was really nice of you to…you know…pester me about coming. I—that was kind of new.” He opened one eye and looked at her. “I liked it.”
    Mabel didn't make light of it. She heard what he was saying, and didn't try to brush it off as nothing. It wasn't nothing, and she knew that.
    “You guys welcomed me in just like I was family,” said Mabel. “That meant a lot to me. Some folks—they just see us as people whose job it is to feed them and wait on them and take care of them, never thinking twice about what we want or need or think. It was real different working for Kermit and the Missus and you all.”
    “It's different, all right,” said Clifford dryly, but he put his big hand over hers on top his leg and twined his fingers with hers. “Not everybody finds us as lovable as you.”
    Mabel made a chuckle that was half a sigh. “Yeah. Things have been kind of tough on Kermit and the company, lately,” she admitted. “I'm glad they sent the squirt home for a bit.”
    “Yeah. That's probably for the best. Kerm's had a lot on his plate lately.”
    “Reckon the Missus is holding up okay after…?” She trailed off, not wanting to refer to it directly.
    “Miss Piggy?” Clifford snorted. “She's as tough as they come,” he said. “Plus, she's surrounded by tons of admirers 24/7.”
    “That's not as easy as it looks,” Mabel said mildly.
    “No,” admitted Clifford, and Mabel heard the worry beneath his blithe reassurances. “And when Piggy's upset--”
    “Kermit's upset,” finished Mabel. She was silent, playing with the edge of her apron. “You reckon she was furious with him over that picture? I hate to think what she might have said to him.”
    But Clifford laughed. “Are you kidding? Way I hear it, she gave him about 30 seconds of the business and then loved him up one side and then the other. Made him feel better.”
    Mabel said nothing, and Clifford opened his eyes and looked at her stunned expression.
    “Surprised, are you?” he asked. “She can turn on a dime—even in those heels.”
    But Mabel was smiling. “So she didn't believe any of that nonsense?” She shook her head. “What am I saying—of course she didn't.”
    “Yep. Now, if she was here, and this happened, she might have hi-yahed him into next week before they got it all sorted out, but when they're apart, she's team Kermit all the way.”
    “I didn't know that,” said Mabel. “I'm glad.”
    “Yeah. And Kermit might give her a hard time over—well, everything—when she's on the set or something, but when she's traveling, he's a big cream puff.”
    “Most folks don't figure that out,” said Mabel, her voice quiet. Clifford opened his eyes again and smiled.
    “Good thing they're not most folks,” he said. He looked at her carefully. “Good thing I'm not most folks,” he said. She turned and looked at him, obviously wanting to say more, but something in Clifford's expression stopped her. She studied his face, squinting at him myopically, then smiled.
    “It's not going to be easy,” she said, and that was all.
    “Nothing worth having is easy,” said Clifford. “That doesn't scare me.”
    “Good to know,” said Mabel.
    The door opened and shut, and Tricia came into the living room and looked at them. "Hey peeps," she said. "I'm home!"

    It might have been Marty, and it might have been their complete inability to bully an icon such as Kermit the Frog, but whatever the reason, the financial backers scuttled back into the dark recesses they had emerged from. Still, in his quieter moments, Kermit could swear he felt their beady little eyes on him and tried not to think what the long-term consequences would be for shining on the people who held the purse strings.
    Piggy behaved herself—more or less—and the tabloids quieted down, at least a little. There had been a few relatively peaceful days, with nothing more than drudgery to sweeten the pot, but it had been rather nice to have no fires to put out, no disaster to have to explain or deal with. Although they didn't say it to each other, both Kermit and Scooter hoped this was not the calm before a perfect storm.
    They'd gotten a good three-fifths of the movie—if you counted individual scenes—edited into submission, and the deadlines no longer loomed over their shoulders like an avalanche, waiting for a loud noise or a tremor to dislodge destruction and mayhem. Syncing the movie to the Mayhem's tracks had started, and there was considerably more nodding and smiling going on all around the studio. Even Gonzo's rash had cleared up, which Dr. Honeydew had taken full credit for. Apparently, Rizzo and Gonzo had rounded up their public relations crew and had been doing all sorts of damage control online. The fan sites were all abuzz with happy news, and open speculation about the new movie and what kind of box office it would get. There was even more open speculation about the by-now infamous dance scene. Descriptions of the costumes ranged from the ridiculous to the sublime to the non-existent, but Kermit was so happy they were concentrating on other costuming to not complain. Scooter had told Sara that he'd been approached by everything from Ladies Home Journal to Cosmo asking about the possibility of having the three “Angels” dish a little (or a lot) before the movie premiered. He consorted with Marty, comparing schedules, and they mapped in some big pieces.
    “Any word on that white space?” Marty had asked just yesterday, and Scooter had at least had to hesitate before saying, “Not yet--let me call you by the weekend.”
    Grease! was packing them in, and the crowds outside afterward had reached epic proportions. Thoreau's new line was being hailed in every fashion mag worth its reputation or angling for one, and Rowlf had phoned in just that morning to say he was playing the Dixieland Delight (“Sounds like a dessert,” Kermit had said, and Rowlf had agreed with him) and would be home--at least for a visit--by St. Patty's Day.
    Hollywood had thawed a little toward Kermit, although some counted him lucky he was still breathing. Others counted him lucky to be still married. Still others wondered if it was all some elaborate ruse, and openly speculated that the frog and the pig were headed for divorce at something approaching the speed of gossip. They bore up under it as best they could—each trying to bolster the other—but in truth, nothing that was said or done or thought or written hurt them as much as simply being apart. For that, there was no ready cure.

    “Okay,” Scooter admitted as Sara adjusted his tie. “He's kind of pathetic at the end of the day when I'm getting ready to come home to you, but he's hanging in.”
    Sara looked distressed, but Scooter just smiled and kissed her.
    “I used to look waaay more pathetic when he was going home to Miss Piggy every night and I was going home to an empty apartment.”
    “I know,” said Sara. “That's why I took pity on you and finally let you--”
    Her lips were too busy to finish the sentence, but they had both lost the train of thought anyway.
    “Anyway, as I was saying…,” Scooter began.
    “What were you saying, anyway?” Sara murmured, teasing him.
    “I was saying that I think I'm going to make him go the middle of next week. We're not exactly ahead, but we're very solid, and nothing we're working on now needs to be prescreened. We've already done the preliminary editing, and we know we have all the shots we have to have. It's just a matter of cabling it all fluidly enough to make sure the plot hangs together.”
    “As long as you don't hang separately,” Sara intoned, and laughed at Scooter's eye roll.
    “Speaking of hanging, Kermit's got a party this Friday, and he'd rather be strung up than go, especially after what happened last time he was in a Hollywood crowd.” Scooter had a frown on his face that made Sara's own face frown in sympathy.
    “Are there any Kardashians on the guest list?”
    “I don't think so,” said Scooter. “But you never can tell. Strange bedfellows and all that.”
    Speaking of--” Sara began, loving the way Scooter blushed to the tips of his adorable ears. “I am going to be out late that night helping put the magazine to bed. Why don't you go with Kermit?”
    “To keep him out of trouble, you mean? I'm pretty sure he's not going to be wearing those cufflinks again any time soon.” He considered it. “I could,” he said thoughtfully. “He's certainly not going to need his plus-1.”
    “Then you should go. Besides, you've got your tux all snazzied up and ready to go—you should go and hang out with the beautiful people.”
    “I'd rather hang out here with the beautiful people--” Scooter began.
    “Cute,” Sara interjected, but kissed him chastely on the lips and turned him toward the door.
    “I have to work. Tell him you'll go to the party with him.”
    “And throw myself between him and any femme fatales who try to cozy up to him? I could do that….”
    “I'm sure you could,” Sara said dryly. “Just remember who you're coming home to cozy up to after.”
    “Yes ma'am,” said Scooter. He wasn't about to forget that.

    Being on your own has its advantages. You don't have to share a television (not that there's much on worth watching). You don't have to argue about whose turn it is to do the dishes or put the toilet paper on the roll. You don't have to wait for the shower, and you rest assured that what you put in the fridge or the pantry is going to be there when you go back for it. Still, there isn't that much on television, and dishes are quick work, and if you don't want to wait on the shower, well, you can share it. All things being all things, the merger was going pretty well.
    Howard was not a closet hog. As a matter-of-fact, his side of the closet (well, corner really) was fairly spartan. A couple of nice suits, his tux in its hanging bag and less than a dozen starched shirts.
    “I really prefer a drawer for my pants,” he'd confided. “I iron everything, anyway, so it doesn't matter.”
    A roommate who irons is even better than a roommate who cooks, and Howard did both.
    Not everything went smoothly. There are always adjustments. Transportation and scheduling conflicts with dinner and a few genuine tussles over things like what hour work was expected to be put away and whether or not breakfast should be a sit-down meal or ignored altogether surfaced without warning. On the whole, however, it had been roundly approved with a sufficient majority to carry the house.
    This particular morning, Howard put Thoreau into a taxi with a cup of strong Romanian chai, blew him a kiss and started for the bus stop. He might be successful but he was no snob about public transportation. When he'd been younger, scrambling after auditions, he'd been more than grateful for buses that would take you where you needed to go. Besides, he was only going to run a half-dozen errands before stopping by the studio, and it would be nice to sit and collect his thoughts between.
    If New Yorkers are impersonal, the citizens of LA are sometimes overly interested in your business or overly interested in telling you (or showing you) their business. Wanting privacy, Howard had his phone out before he sat, answering a few messages and checking his twitter feed. He was pleased to note that Piggy seemed to be getting the upper hand in the publicity war, with most folks finding her comments less inflammatory than the other diva's actions. While her comments had been pointed, it was roundly acknowledge that they could have been worse. Also, it hadn't hurt that she had kept a pretty low profile after the widely reported comments at the airport. While he had been sorry to abandon Piggy to her fate, Fate had been awfully accommodating. Still….
    He sent her a quick text, just to remind her how wonderful she was.
    “Broadway will never be the same after you,” he texted. “You've shown them what a real star is like. Snout in the air, dearest. Hugs from both of us.”
    Piggy heard her phone buzz and hauled it out. She pulled it out and saw the message, then smiled and sent one back. Rory leaned over her shoulder, being purposefully nosy. “More mush from the frog?” he asked. Piggy poked him with her elbow and gave him a look.
    “I wish,” she said. “Mush from Howard and Thoreau.”
    “How are they doing?” Rory asked. “Chad's still on cloud nine about being asked to do some of the print ads.”
    “Domestic bliss,” Piggy said, then frowned. There was a time when she would have described her own home life as such, rocky though it sometimes was.
    “What? Something's going on in your beautiful gray matter,” he demanded. “I know that look.”
    Piggy shot him an annoyed look. “You do not,” she said. “Moi was merely looking thoughtful.”
    Moi was looking unhappy,” Rory countered. “It's been pretty quiet on the western front. Everything okay?”
    “Everything is peachy,” Piggy snapped. “Why wouldn't it be?”
    “Um, the entire continental United States is between you and the frog you love—ring any bells?”
    “Speaking of--”
    Rory moved wisely out of range. “I'm just checking.”
    “You're just poking,” said Piggy. “Stop it.”
    Rory changed tactics. “When's your creepy boss coming to see you?”
    Piggy knew he was trying to change topics, but she let him. Truth be told, she had moved past patient, and understanding and was well on her way to annoyed. The movie could go hang itself, for all she cared right now. She wanted her frog! She wanted him here and now and in her arms! And if he didn't put enough of their stupid movie to bed to come up here and see her, she was going to explode. Or cry. Well, cry some more. The nights had been sort of awful.
    “Mr. Strathers is coming to see me Thursday night,” she said primly. “He was able to buy a ticket from someone who couldn't come.”
    Rory looked at her, frowning. “Sure he didn't pry it from the cold, dead fingers of another ardent fan?”
    “I don't know what you are insinuating,” Piggy said, but she fought the urge to shiver. Seymour was a little creepy, poor thing. He would never have made it at all if it hadn't been for his father and his father's connections. Still, he had been very lovely to have asked them all to do Christmas together at the Palace, and one must pay one's debts in this business. “Mr. Strathers is coming to see me—that is, to see the show on Thursday. Moi is supposed to have dinner with him afterward.”
    “As long as you're going somewhere public,” Rory said. Despite her assertions to the contrary, he had heard from Kristen that Piggy's former boss was a tad odd, and had a bit of a fanboy crush on Piggy. That, and Piggy's obvious discomfort discussing him told Rory that this was a social obligation more than a social call. She had practically admitted it just now.
    “We were just going to go to The Grill,” Piggy said. Seymour had argued for Four Seasons, but Piggy had put him off. “I was just there,” she had argued. “If Moi goes again so soon, I'll spoil them.”
    “Then let me pick a place,” Seymour had oozed on the phone. “I'd love to take you someplace worthy of showing you off.”
    “Vous are very kind,” said Piggy, “but I would prefer to go to The Grill. Besides, you already know the food there is good. That's where I saw you for the first time.” Piggy had stopped, thinking about running into him there, and then again at the sundries shop. How long had he been in town now?
    Seymour's voice was full of disappointment—or maybe disapproval—but he managed to be gracious. “All right,” he'd said. “I'll humor you this time.” Piggy had been glad when she'd hung up. Later, however, telling Kermit about it, she had sounded much happier. And Kermit, for his part, had shown more enthusiasm than usual.
    “That's great, Honey,” he'd said. “You'll have a nice time seeing Mr. Strathers. Tell him I said hello, okay?”
    “Moi will tell him,” she had said. Anything to make Kermit happy. To Rory she said, “There is nothing creepy about having dinner with a former boss in a nice restaurant.” She was no longer glaring at him, but was looking down and plucking at the hem of the pink sweater she was wearing over her black leotard.
    Rory noticed this strategic change from offense to defense and pounced on it, but gently. It was still like an elephant landing on your welcome mat, but he at least tried for subtlety. “If you're worried about going out, or about the publicity, or--”
    Not helping,” Piggy muttered, and Rory tried to find better footing.
    “Look, I'm trying to be helpful,” he said, but it sounded more whiny than resentful, and Piggy forgave him immediately.
    “I know,” Piggy said quickly, still worrying the hem of her sweater.
    Rory moved her down the hallway toward the empty stage. They were going to work on the fight scene between Sandy and Rizzo. Kristen and Harrison were probably already waiting for them onstage. “As long as you feel comfortable with it. Kristen said he was, you know, sort of drooling over you at the restaurant. If you think he might make a move on you or something….” It had not quite been phrased as a question, but Piggy answered him anyway with a laugh.
    “Mr. Strathers? Don't be ridiculous. He's harmless.”
    “Well, yes, I suppose, but what if…if the, um, other person shows up. Will this Strather's character be able to come to your defense if someone makes a move on you again?”
    “Since when has Moi needed help dealing with lowlifes?” Piggy demanded, hands on her curvaceous hips.
    But Rory wasn't having any of it. “Since Scribbler had to save your bacon a few--”
    “Don't you dare say his name to me!” Piggy hissed, looking around as though afraid someone had overheard them. “That…that miserable excuse for a--”
    “Who saved you—that guy,” Rory said bluntly, and Piggy squirmed.
    “Well, yes,” Piggy admitted, “but he was so…and he…he had no right to post that picture!”
    “That is certainly true,” Rory said, “but I was making a point--”
    Piggy threw her hands up in the air, huffing out a breath. “Okay, when I'm out with him, I'll have a side order of smack-down at the ready—now will you lay off? Get out here and help me with this scene, because the way Moi is feeling now I'm liable to rip Kristen's head off.”
    “Good,” Rory murmured. “Hold on to that.” He didn't want Piggy's old boss to be so besotted by her charms that he wasn't vigilant. It was easy to be distracted by the perfection that was Piggy herself and lose sight of what was going on around you.
    They went out onto the stage and Harrison bounded up to her, unaware of the danger. “Ready for a heaping helping of kick-butt?” he asked.
    “Starting with you?” Piggy snapped, and Harrison took an involuntary step back. He looked at Rory over her head.
    “When's the frog coming?” he demanded. “If he doesn't get up here soon, she's gonna hurt somebody.”

    Kermit had seen the number flash up when he'd been on the phone, and had almost dropped it in his coffee in his haste to answer it.
    “Mom?” he said into the phone. “Mom—is that--?”
    “It's me and your Mom,” said James The Frog, and Kermit felt his eyes widen in surprise. Mom was usually more of the phone caller/letter writer.
    “Um, hi Dad—is everything okay?” Phone calls were infrequent enough to be worrisome unless you knew why.
    “We're all fine here,” said James serenely. “How are you doing, Son?”
    “Oh, um, fine,” Kermit lied. “It's just, um….”
    “Son.” James's voice was quiet, but compelling, and Kermit sighed with relief and gratefulness. He did not have to pretend to be Superamphibian in front of his Dad. “Bozos giving you a hard time, are they?”
    “Yeah. Little bit,” Kermit said ruefully, and grinned in spite of himself. Just saying it out loud, admitting it to someone else, was a profound relief.
    “Well, people are mostly good,” said James. “You know that.”
    “I do know that,” Kermit said quietly.
    “But sometimes they are mean-spirited and bothersome.”
    “Yeah.”
    “But it gets better. I promise.”
    Kermit was quiet for a moment, waiting to see if his father would say more. “Thanks, Dad,” he said quietly. “I'm hanging in.”
    “I know you are, Son,” James said, and the certainty in his voice was like a tonic to his battered soul. Kermit made a small sound of acquiescence, then fell silent. They stood there for another 15 seconds, just feeling connected to each other. “Here's your Mother,” James said quietly, and Kermit heard him say, “Jane?”
    “Hi Honey,” Jane The Frog said. “How are you, Sweetie? Are you eating right? Is Piggy really doing okay in New York?”
    “I'm—I'm fine, Mom. It's, you know, annoying at times, but everything's good, everything's fine. I'm eating right—mostly. And Piggy seems to be fine. Really. She's doing just swell on Broadway.”
    “I'm sorry things are bumpy now,” said Jane. “We love you a lot. There's someone here who would like to talk to you.”
    “Hello?”
    “Hi Robin!” Kermit cried. The sound of Robin, so close to his heart but many, many miles away was painful and comforting at the same time. “How's it going in the Swamp? Are you keeping up with school?”
    “School's okay,” said Robin. “When am I coming back to stay with you?”
    Kermit heard his Mother shush Robin gently. “Kermit is very busy,” he heard her say. “You mustn't pester him until he's ready for you to come again.”
    “Um, I'm doing…I'm having fun here with Grandma and Grandpa,” Robin said. “Dad and I have been practicing our dives.”
    “You'll be showing me up in no time,” Kermit said. He tried to remember the last time he'd taken a comforting swim in the backyard pool.
    “Naw—you'll always be a good diver,” said Robin. “Aunt Maggie says so.”
    “Then it must be so,” Kermit said dryly. “What else does Aunt Maggie say?”
    “She said those reporters better stop writing those nasty stories about you and Aunt Piggy or--”
    “Kermit?” His mother was on the phone again, and Kermit fought back a smile. He supposed Robin had been shushed before he could repeat what Maggie might have said, but it cheered him nonetheless to think that his articulate, fool-intolerant sister was indignant on his behalf.
    “Hi Mom.”
    “Robin was just--”
    “It's fine, Mom. I know.” He was grinning, and maybe because she could hear him grinning, she became less determinedly cheery.
    “Maggie just gets, you know, angry about all the mean publicity.”
    “I'm not wild about it myself,” said Kermit, “but it's okay here. Really. I'm doing fine, the movie's fine.”
    “How's our girl?” Jane The Frog asked, a little catch in her voice. She loved her rather unusual daughter-in-law with a fierceness that always touched Kermit.
    “She's amazing,” Kermit said, his voice warming. “She's doing just great.”
    “Really?” said Jane. “I know she's probably missing you like gangbusters.”
    “Yeah,” said Kermit. “It's one of her most endearing qualities.”
    Jane laughed, the sound warm and comforting. “I can understand why you think so,” she said. She hesitated, and Kermit felt his own breath hitch. She was leading up to something, was not sure how he was going to react. Fear gripped his heart for an instant, and he wondered worriedly if--
    “Do you want us to come and see you?” she asked.
    Surprise made him silent. They were worried about him. They thought he might need them, or want them.
    The silence stretched while he tried to think what to say, but nothing came out, and his Mother's voice surged into the silence between them.
    “Sweetie—do you want me to come and see you?” she asked. “I could come and cook for you and keep you company while…well, while you're working on the film.”
    Kermit's voice was very gentle. “Mom, I always love to have you visit me. But I'm fine. I promise I am. I'm working a lot, but it's paying off. And as soon as I can, I'm going to go see Piggy.”
    “Oh, good,” said Jane. “She must be lonely.”
    Kermit started to tell her Piggy had friends up there, that she was doing just fine without him, but something kept him from saying the words. “Yeah,” he said quietly. “But she's a brick. And she's doing fantastic in the show. Sold out and everything.”
    “I know,” said Jane. “We read it in the local paper.”
    Surprise would have made Kermit's eyebrows rise—if he'd had any.
    “But you're…you're okay?”
    “Mom—I'm good.”
    “Jane, Honey, the boy is fine. He's a grown frog now—he's been taking on the world for a long time by himself,” Kermit heard his Father mutter, and he smiled, more content than he had been in days.
    “Look—give my love to everybody, okay? Tell them I appreciate them. All right?”
    “Of course,” said Jane. Her voice sounded just a little wet, and Kermit closed his eyes, holding the phone against his aural organ carefully and drinking in the sound of her, of home.
    “And when this is all over—the movie, Broadway—we'll come home and spend a few days with you guys.”
    “That would be just lovely,” said Jane, sounding more like her usual brisk self. “Look, your Father is giving me the evil eye. Time for us to go. We love you, Kermit—dress warm, okay?”
    “Mom—it's 74 degrees here,” Kermit said, but he was smiling. “Love you. Bye.”
    Scooter moved behind him, standing awkwardly in the doorway. “Everything okay at home?” Scooter asked. Kermit smiled and nodded, centered and grounded again.
    “Oh yeah,” said Kermit. “Everything at home is fine.”
     
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  20. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    Thoughts...

    1 Iced coffee with a little something something... Heh, that sounds like the tequila-flavored coffee Mom tried to get our guests to partake of last night at fter the meal was finished.
    2 Rully liked the conversation between Clifford and Mabel, it reminds me of the sentiment my dad would evoke, which I would like to think I try to emulate but know full well I don't always come across like that. And that doesn't necessarily make me a bad person, but it does make me at least realize it and attempt to be better. But then that connects with the thoughts voiced by James later in the chapter.
    3 "She can turn on a dime—even in those heels."
    Lovely phrase.
    4 Looking forward to the next bit with Cliff and Trish.
    5 "Kermit could swear he felt their beady little eyes on him and tried not to think what the long-term consequences would be for shining on the people who held the purse strings."
    Not exactly sure what you mean by "shining on".
    6 The entire segment with Scooter and Sara... Oh, that's just tres fantastique. Sheek, freak, er sorry, still got the music from last night's special in the back of my head while listening to MCR's Muppet Christmas merry-thon.
    7 "When he'd been younger, scrambling after auditions, he'd been more than grateful for buses that would take you where you needed to go."
    What about buses that don't take where you need to go as efficiently as they should? *Casts a knowing look at Slackbot's tales of MARTA in Atlanta.
    8 Heh, good jab at Seymour what with Rory's implications.
    *Hears Charleston Heston's voice saying "You'll have to pry this ticket to see Miss Piggy in Grease! from my cold dead hands, you d* dirty apes!"
    9 The fact Seymour accepted Piggy's wish to go eat at the Grill with disapproval... Yeah, cause that means another run with that infuriating waiter Alexi huh?
    10 Seymour keeps saying things that would sound normal, but just make your inner creep alert go off. Yeesh, it's good that Piggy's castmates picked up on this and are on guard.
    11 "Mr. Strathers? Don't be ridiculous. He's harmless."
    Famous last words. *Uncle D plays a dramatic sting from the off-screen organ.
    12 Hee, Superamphibian.
    13 "Well, people are mostly good," said James. "You know that." "I do know that," Kermit said quietly. "But sometimes they are mean-spirited and bothersome." "Yeah." "But it gets better. I promise."
    This is probably the most powerful part of the chapter... And it's so well-said and has such a ring of truth to it.
    14 *Laughs at the wonderful childness of Robin asking when he can come back to stay with his uncle.
    15 *Not hard to imagine an articulate full-intolerant sister indignant on Kermit's behalf. Or indingnant "with" his behalf.
    Also, I find the fact that Jane loves Piggy with a fierceness all her own endearing.
    16 Congratulations Aunt Ru. What with the part where Jane expresses the nature of why she called Kermit, you managed to do the one thing others like Lisa warn their readers about, to have a box of tissues ready. For that you deserve truest thanks.


    There are a couple of other things I'll probably send you in a PM later, appreciate the fact this novel's still going strong and hope you have a vonderful holiday weekend. :jim:
     
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