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So We'll Go No More A-Roving, for Fear of Furry Monsters

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by newsmanfan, Sep 12, 2011.

  1. Ruahnna

    Ruahnna Well-Known Member

    Yay! (waves arms wildly over head!) Thank goodness Deadly is going to get his furry blue butt in gear and do something besides talk the problem to death. Ah...it's the same with Shakespearean actors everywhere....

    I'm beginning to thaw a little towards Carl, but I'm not near enough defrosted to think about getting too close to him. Kudos to him for helping Snookie through a low moment--he might be redeemable, as long as he stays out of the kitchen.

    I really liked your interpretation of Kermit, here. You're really getting a handle on his I'm-their-leader-which-way-did-they-go persona backstage and I'm happy to see him juggling the show, Robin, Piggy, Scooter and a nice bowl of frosted flies at the same time. Who said the frog can't multitask! But shame on Scooter for not checking out the website--shame, shame.

    I can't wait to see what happens next! And I'm really ready for everybody to come home safe!

    (Except Van Neuter.)
  2. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    For the record, I thank you for the update. Didn't comment last night cause I got in late after returning from surveying the near-destruction of Gotham City.

    *Follows :news: down the hidden downwards staircase at the hotel.
    *Enters Van Neuter's lab.
    Okay, so what have we got?

    Demon kitten, aw, cute. <3
    :batty: Wouldn't it be a bakeneko?
    Technically, yes. Although bakenekos are adult monster cats, whether winged or not. And you should check its tail.
    :batty: Why's that?
    If it's one single tail, it's still a bakeneko. If it's split into two, then it's a nekomata.
    :batty: Check.
    Blue-skinned hamster? Possibly either a zombie hamster from that botched alphabet toy ouija summoning or one of Stitch's cousins.
    Feather boa constrictor, nice, nice Muppet Show reference.

    *Grim smile as raven-disguised reporter and skulking spectral serpent king are now teamed up in releasing the potential prisoners.

    Great job with the segment featuring Snookie and Carl and Constanza. At least there's someone looking out for the hazed host.

    *<3 Robin's adorableness at trick-or-treating. Are the others from Sesame still there, or did they go back to their respective homes?
    *Glad the Mutations got back from their cruise in the Spanish isles.
    Poor Beaker, he gets into trouble wherever he goes. *Remembers Frank Caliendo's bit from this morning. *Glares at the guys in the back who didn't laugh when he did his Bunsen voice.

    Er, more please? *Disappears.
  3. newsmanfan

    newsmanfan Well-Known Member

    Ah, but the Mutations weren't on a cruise -- didn't you catch them playing as the house band for "Break a Leg" and "Monsters Tonight"?

    Thanks to Ru for the "Frosted Flies" joke. Ah, bug-food humor!

    Glad you guys like so far...big finale still to come...soon! :news:
  4. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    Of corpse I caught the Mutations as the house band for every live MMN show. But the frog doesn't know that does he? Riiiight. It's all in how you play along with the show you're watching/fic you're reading. It's kind of like how when I'm watching Colbert, I get all indignant at what he condemns or react with a "Noooo!" when Jon ended up having an intervention last week with the actors from The Campaign.
    Heh, Colbert. That reminds me, he gets a :) for doing a People In Your Neighborhood joke.

    Muppet Domination peoples, is everywhere.
    Fragglemuppet likes this.
  5. Ruahnna

    Ruahnna Well-Known Member

    Piggy: Do we get to choose which muppet is going to dominate us?
    Ru: Piggy!
    Kermit: Piggy! Sheesh!
    Piggy: (airly) I do not see what all the fuss is about. Moi was only asking....
  6. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    Oh, more of your being tart huh?
    :shifty: There's tarts?
    Erm, go ask Grace, she was delivering them when she moved into HV on Monday.
  7. WebMistressGina

    WebMistressGina Well-Known Member

    I love how I get these alerts when I'm already on the page they alerting me to. Once again, I have blindly stumbled on to this chapter and was happy to see that Deadly was just chilling out in the glass case. I actually thought they had turned him into a monster monster.

    I like Carl; he's not completely bad or good really, but you have shown that he has some affection for the Snooker. I still like Rosie best though and maybe cause I knew a guy named Rosie once.

    I'm with Ru on this one - Scooter, your tech senses should have tingled at a domain like that. My God, man, you worked at Google for cripes sake! You should know better!

    Robin! Nearly forgot he was in here, so glad to see him back.

    And of course you know I always love seeing the Divine Miss P where ever she is. Though, something has been bothering me...so Camilla obviously knows that Gonzo is doing something stupid on some show; Rizzo and Pepe know. And maybe I've forgotten, but I'm under the belief that no one has bothered to, you know, tell the others like Kermit and Piggy and Fozzie and Scooter than Gonzo is doing something stupid on TV.

    My inner child detective is puzzled as to why these clues have not come together, however I can see that things are coming to ahead. Quickly Watson! To the sleuth mobile!
    The Count likes this.
  8. newsmanfan

    newsmanfan Well-Known Member

    Ah, the others are vaguely aware of it, as mentioned many many chapters back, but yes, I was planning another reference to all that soon. Patience, grasshoppa.

    Ed, was it obvious that the director Bob was supposed to be one of the long-limbed giant Muppet monsters? I noticed some of them don't seem to have working mouths, so I figured they have their own version of sign language. I think Carl views Snookums as his own personal Muppet torture-doll..."He's MINE, YOU can't do that, only I can!" ...but mayhap there's more to it after all. ;)

    I don't write the frognpig well; I leave that to more experienced ughgushers, e.g. Ru, although I like the interpretations I'm seeing from others around here such as WMG. But hey, they need to pop in from time to time...after all, I try to include everyone at least in cameo! Wouldn't be a proper Muppet story without them!

    More soon as I can. I need to iron out details, though the general pattern is in my head for the big showdown(s) to come...appreciate all readers! :news:
  9. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    Actually, I don't recognize the nameless monsters unless there's a strong connection to their appearance in the fic. For example, the triple-header working the tally phones for Brake A Leg!? I knew it was Tom, Dick, and Harry when Gonzo launched into telling Rosie not to trust what he said, what she said, what it said? The only long-legged big Muppet monsters I know of are: The Danceros because of its four legs, the duo who sang Your Feet's Too Big, and I guess it was a Bossman? who appeared in The Boy From Ipanema with Petula Clark. Also, I was going to ask if the creature from the fat lagoon director of I Married A Monster! was related to Fern from the Hurting Something sketches from The Jim Henson Hour.

    At any rate, you're doing great when said silent characters recur to their form of sign language if they have no other means of communication available.
    Plus, you get points for the Pythonesque rant when Newsie got Uncle D to realize he could walk out of the glass cabinet and the reading the journalist's Gina did for the dragon.

    Thank you, look forward to whatever's next.
    *Goes to finetune Van Neuter's mom's costuming now that I have a clearer idea of her as Bloody Mary.
  10. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    *Goes 'Bump' in the night, because this deserves to be on Page 1.

    Wonders if because of the blackness of his fur, Burt would be a warg.
    :( What?
    No, not you... The wolf-thing from this fic.
    *Smiles evilly at having a female version of all three strike team members.
  11. newsmanfan

    newsmanfan Well-Known Member

    Ed? You have a female monster strike team? What, chained in your dungeon in front of a webcam? Yeek!

    More soon...busy week...two drawing commissions now and another story claiming my utmost attention, but I have ideas already brewing for the next installment! Patience, I ask of thee all...

  12. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    Not yet, only in the plotting stages.
    :grouchy: Now get yer filthy mind outta da gutter Mike Nelson! Whoever that guy is.
    *In Vincent Van Ghoul voice: Don't make me send my strike team after you. Post more story. Please?
  13. newsmanfan

    newsmanfan Well-Known Member

    Part Forty-Five

    The place they dumped her in was cramped and stank of unwashed fur and other things less appetizing. Rhonda crouched in a corner, shivering. When the chuckling monster left, she finally took a shuddering breath, then wrinkled her nose. “Aw, gawd...what is this, the back room at the Post?” Suddenly she realized she wasn’t alone; numerous pairs of eyes glowed all around her, reflected in the faint light from a bare bulb high overhead. “Oh no. Ah, listen, monstery guys, I’m with the Fourth Estate, ya know? Press? I can get ya into a show, if you...oh geez...” She pressed her back into the hard corner of the box, seeing the eyes closing in, creeping from the shadows...until they were close enough for the meager light to reveal their forms. Rhonda blew out a breath, relaxing. “Oh for crying out loud! You guys sure know how to give a warm welcome!”

    The multitude of rats blinked, sniffed, or regarded her with mild curiosity. “You have an estate? Cool,” one said.

    Another snorted. “Fat lotta good that does down here!”

    She stared at them; there must have been three or four dozen rats all packed into what, on closer inspection, seemed to be a storage freezer; at least it had no lid and wasn’t working, though the air down here was cold enough to make a chiller unnecessary. She peered up at the top of the oblong box: thin chickenwire had been loosely laid over the opening. “Are you telling me none of you have tried getting out of that flimsy thing yet?”

    A big, burly rat who looked vaguely familiar shrugged. “Dat’s ten-gage wire, sweetheart. Even if we chew t’roo it, it’s two feet up, two feet down on da udder side, an’ den nine feet to da door...”

    “Dat’s eleven feet,” another rat piped up.

    “Thirteen,” Rhonda muttered, disgusted.

    The big rat shrugged, and pulled a piece of dry wheat out of the rolled-up sleeve of his plain white t-shirt, gnawing on it vaguely. “Eh, anyways, dey got big bruisers right outside da door. An’ believe me, sweetie, ya don’t wanna know what dey considdah a light snack!”

    The rest of the rats shook their heads and chorused “un-uhs!” all around. Rhonda fumed, brushing back her mussed hair and beginning a thorough search of the box using the flashlight she’d brought from Newsie’s apartment. “There has to be a way outta here!” Struck by a thought, she whirled, eyes flicking from rat to rat. “Are any of you guys from the tunnels? Got dragged off the streets, stuff like that?”

    Several nodded. “Well, sure,” one said, with an indignant sniff. “Ya think we wanted ta get stuck in dis nasty ol’ fridge widdout even no food left in it?”

    “Then get your butts in gear and help me!” she snapped. She shone the light into one corner, where the hardware which used to hold a shelf remained, though rusted. “Use those ledges! Form a chain! Big guys on the bottom! You, Bubba, you be the anchor!” she ordered, remembering the burly rat’s name finally.

    He blinked at her dumbly. “Uh...lissen, no offense, sweetheart, but...”

    “I am nobody’s sweetheart,” she barked. “Do you want to just sit here until some giant furry moron comes for a snack? I have already lost a good man out there this morning, and there’s a lot of important work to do and the sooner the better!” She glared around at the sheepish-looking rodents; none of them except Bubba would even meet her eyes. “Does anyone have a cell phone? They took mine, the creeps...probably getting slime all over it as we speak, and I don’t even wanna know what they’ve done to my Ratbook page...”

    One of the smaller rats ventured shyly, “Uh...they started taking everyone’s stuff away after they caught Alec playing ‘Crumbs With Friends.’”

    “Great,” Rhonda muttered. She put her paws on her hips, jutting her dainty snout at Bubba. “Well? Are you gonna give a rat a hand up, or are you just a big wuss?” When he just stared at her, and several others gasped audibly, she glared at them all again. “Oh come on! We are rats, people! We have persevered through plagues, grain famines, involuntary sea voyages, and the whole ‘ratcessory’ thing after Britney adopted a Scotch Longfur! We can do this! We can take them! We are strong, we are invincible –“

    “We aaare roooooodents,” another female rat suddenly burst into song. She looked abashed when the others turned to stare at her.

    “That’s right, sister,” Rhonda nodded firmly. “We are rats! Now listen up! Those freaks are planning on taking over the whole city – our city! If they do that, no rodent will ever be allowed to run free in the Lower East Side, eating electrical insulation and the best Chinese food in the world, ever again!” Seeing some of them considering that unhappily, she pressed on. “No rat will ever be able to raid the Mayor’s larder, or...or infest an entire used-mattress store...or buy the newest cute little walking shorts the garment district has to offer ever again!”

    They were silent, whiskers twitching uncertainly. The rat who’d done such a perfect Helen Reddy spoke up, “Ummm...I think that last one may just be you and me, girl.”

    “Heathens,” Rhonda snorted. “But don’t you guys see? This isn’t just about what the monsters will do to the careless idiots walking around up there—this affects us directly! What city is this again?” she demanded suddenly, accosting a jaded-seeming rat in the front row.

    Startled, he stepped back, then glared at her. “New Yawk!”

    “And who was here before buildings even covered all of Manhattan?”

    Another rat moved forward, his voice raspy but firm. “We were!”

    “And who really runs this town, I ask ya?” Rhonda yelled.

    A chorus – small, tentative, but a chorus nonetheless – answered, “We do.”

    “What was that?”

    “We do!”

    “Who does?”

    “We do!” most of them roared. Excitement swept through the stale, dingy freezer. Rhonda looked at each of them, making sure to hold eye contact as her gaze traveled around.

    “That’s froggin’ right, it’s our town!” She lifted her flashlight, doing an unintentional impression of Lady Liberty. “For the rats of New York City!”

    A loud cheer reverberated off the plastic-coated walls. “Now let’s get up there and save our city!” Rhonda yelled. Rats scrambled and climbed, hoisting one another up the moldy walls. Rhonda noticed Bubba was still standing there, his big eyes narrowed at her. “Well?” she snapped.

    He gave her a slow nod. “Ya know, dat’s a shame,” he rumbled.

    “What is?”

    “Dat ya ain’t nobody’s sweetheart,” he said, giving her a very direct look. Rhonda felt her face reddening, and wished she hadn’t discarded her coat, conscious of her not-yet-grown-back fur. Her legs showed too much from under this dress. With a lopsided grin, Bubba ambled toward the corner of the freezer, and grabbed the feet of one rat struggling to reach the first ledge, hefting him into the air so fast the rat squeaked in startlement. “Awright, come on, get up dere, who’s next?”

    Rhonda smoothed down her bangs, feeling both complimented and annoyed. Mustering up her resolve once more, she strode over to the wriggling chain of rodents and held out a paw. “Okay, guys, once we get to the top –“

    “It’s two feet down, and eleven to da door,” one of the rats chimed in.

    “Nine,” someone else muttered.

    “So everybody look sharp, and scatter if the guards see ya! They can’t stop all of us! We will prevail through sheer numbers – like we always have!” she urged them. Caught up in the squirming, upward-climbing mass, she swallowed back a twinge of fear. No, they can’t stop us all...but the ones they DO catch won’t have it easy... Hoping desperately that she wouldn’t be one of the inevitable casualties in this war, she scrambled over the top and into no-rat’s-land.

    The Newsman peered uncertainly around the corner; two Frackles and some sort of giant glob with a multitude of tiny, useless arms quivering from its bulbous sides were engaged in a heated argument just down the next corridor. He was close enough to hear them clearly, though he didn’t comprehend a word of it:

    “The Millennium Falcon could so blow Serenity out of the sky! It has guns!”

    “So? Wash can outfly any pilot in the ‘verse!”

    “Dude, Wash is dead.”

    “Don’t remind me! Ugh! I hated that scene!”

    “How do we get past them?” Newsie muttered. His ghostly companion sighed, flourished his cloak ahead of him with one elegant arm, and simply strode around the corner; before Newsie could react, the dragon grabbed Newsie’s costumed wing-arm and dragged him after.

    “Good gloomy day to you, my fellow miscreants! Er...which way to the cells? I found this foolish bird wandering a little too close to the tunnel entry, heh heh heh...” Deadly beamed at them toothily; the monsters froze, wide googly eyes and dropped jaws turned their way.

    “Er...say...ain’t you s’posed to be locked up too?” a yellow Frackle with red wattles asked.

    “I? Shackled like a common ox? I should say not!” Deadly drew himself on tiptoe haughtily. “Your overlord and I came to an agreement: I bring in the spook vote, and he gives me the Museum.”

    “Oh,” the chickenlike Frackle pondered.

    The blue one nodded. “Uh, yeah, uh...don’t you mean da underlord?”

    “Yeahhh...” the blob mused, regarding the dragon suspiciously, but Deadly immediately lunged at them, releasing Newsie in order to rake both clawed hands in the air before the cringing trio’s snouts.

    “You dare blaspheme he-who-must-be-given-all-manner-of-slimy-snacks?” Deadly roared. “How dare you uncouth, uncultured, microcephalic heathens even speak his title as though you know him personally! I do,” he finished, his voice dropping from dramatic bombast to name-dropping chattiness. “Now, I will ask you a second time, and if there’s a third my good chum His Nastiness shall hear about it: where are the cells?”

    All three monsters dumbly pointed farther down the rocky hallway.

    “Thank you.” Deadly grabbed Newsie by the nape of the costume. “Come along now, we’ll find a lovely cage for you! Mwoooaaahh ha ha ha ha ha!”

    The monsters, silent, shuffled aside to let them pass. When they’d moved out of range of curious eyes and ears and who knows what other senses, Newsie pulled free of Deadly’s cold grip a little and muttered grudgingly, “Good laugh.”

    “Thank you. One must perfect such things, you know.”

    The cells quickly came into view...and Newsie felt cold and more than a little ill. In tiny, barren cage after cage of the prison level, he saw bedraggled humans, dogs, cats, squirrels, a shorn sheep and what looked like a walrus with a fez. The corridor ended at a t-intersection; looking left and right, Newsie could barely make out more cells. They seemed endless. “Holy frog, how big is this place?” he wondered, desperate to find Gina; his heart went out to all the sad souls he passed as Deadly led him imperiously on, but what on earth could he do for them? All the barred doors appeared locked. Did one of those monsters back there have the keys? Was there a master control switch somewhere he could throw to open all the cells?

    “A sad sight, is it not?” Deadly murmured to him, choosing the right-hand turn and walking slowly along it, his gaze drifting over the listless prisoners. Nobody even looked up at them as they passed. “It reminds me of a production I once starred in of ‘Don Juan,’ in particular the Doge’s dungeon scene...no, of course you wouldn’t have seen it, you’re too young...well, let me tell you, it was a marvelous set! They’d built me the dingiest-looking cell – fake chains, of course, although I did ask for real ones, liked to do all my own stunts, you see; this was before your modern ‘action heroes’ but right in line with Buster Keaton and Harold Lloyd and—“

    “We can’t just let all these people waste away down here!” Newsie hissed, trying once again to grab Deadly’s sleeve, irritated that the ghost could touch him, yet his hand went right through the spectral arm. “The monsters undoubtedly have something awful in store for every one of them!”

    Deadly turned to glare directly at him; he couldn’t keep back a shiver at that chilling green gaze, glowing eyes more like chemical sparks than windows to a soul. “And just what do you propose we do, exactly, foolish Muppet? Are you gifted with the strength to bend the bars?”

    “No,” Newsie snapped. “But –“

    “Then we continue on until we find your dark and temper-prone lady, and determine some way to free her. Perhaps I could convince them you should be put in her cell, and when they open the door...” Deadly mused.

    “Yes, good,” Newsie agreed at once. “But what about the rest of these poor people? And...and...things,” he continued awkwardly, seeing what looked like a whitish glob in a tiny glass box in one of the cells; it was feebly trying to separate and clone more of itself, but seemed too weak to manage more than a few puffs of spores. “We...we can’t just leave them!”

    “I shall have to have a very stern chat with this underlord fellow,” Deadly growled. He strode on, not noticing the Newsman hanging back a moment in utter disbelief.

    “You – a stern chat? How is that going to help? These weirdos are clearly unwilling to listen to compassion, or reason at all for that matter!”

    “The megalomaniac is breaking every rule of monsterdom! He must be brought to account!”

    “Right,” Newsie said, catching up, continuing to scan left and right for any sign of Gina. “I’m sure he’ll listen to you.”

    “I am utterly charming, and an expert dancer,” Deadly sniffed. “Of course he will. I just have to get past all this techno-scary nonsense first and speak directly to him...peer behind the curtain, so to speak.”

    “You’re not making any sense,” Newsie muttered.

    “Trust me, fussy reporter, it will all come out in the wash. Have I led you wrong so far?” Deadly demanded. A pink raggy thing and a blue raggy thing suddenly dropped on him from above. “Aaaagh!”

    Newsie staggered back a step, startled, and his jaw dropped when the two freakish things that had menaced his aunt flung their tentacles around the dragon’s head, their bobbing antennae jutted down and they delivered a bright charge of static that made even the ghost jitter and flop in place. “Bad! Bad cow!” the blue one groaned, shaken up and down in the same shock.

    “Bad bad bad! Yiiiiip yip yip yip yip!” the pink one chimed in.

    “Arrrgh! Let go of me, you twisted little mop-brains! Get – off!” Deadly managed to get his claws on one of them, flinging it into the retaining wall between two cells; the other had its tentacles wrapped around his face, blinding him temporarily. It rubbed its deely-bobbers together rapidly again and gave him another shock. “Aaagh! All right that is quite enough of that!” he roared, and with a violent shake of his head loosened it enough to grab it and hurl it away. Deadly snarled, raising both hands, about to deliver some turnabout-is-fair-play on the little creatures, when the pink one yanked its jaw over its entire head, or body (hard to tell with them), and the blue one shouted something that made him pause:

    “You hurt News! Aaaww! Bad! Bad cow! Yip yip yip bad!”

    “I hurt what?” Deadly glared from one of the things to the other; they scrambled and flopped together in the center of the corridor, then wobbled and wavered and levitated up to stare at him eye-to-eye. “What the bloody James Earl Jones are you talking about? I only play a villain! And quite well, admittedly, but really now...”

    Pink glanced at Blue. “Awww. Not bad cow? Not...hurt News?”

    “Bad cow hurt Eth-el,” Blue reminded him.

    Pink shook his head. “Uh-uh-uh-uh. This not cow. Chick-en,” he said, indicating Deadly with a couple of tentacles.

    Affronted, Deadly gave that one a poke with a claw. “I am not a chicken! I am the revered master thespian and part-time Phantom, Uncle Deadly! Now just what are you two playing at, attacking a spook on a mission?” They looked abashed, raising their jaws up to their eyeballs, antennae drooping. Satisfied that he’d made them stop and think, at least, Deadly continued his berating in full Olivier mode. “Why, I’ll have you little cleaning supplies know, I am even now engaged in stopping the unholy tyranny which has pervaded the whole undercity for nigh-on a month at least, with the help of my trusty-if-a-little-dimwitted-comic-sidekick, that Newsmuppet...” He turned to include Newsie in a grand gesture, but the raven-costumed reporter was nowhere to be seen. “Er...Newsboy?” He peered into the nearest cells; the raggy creatures looked high and low as well. “How very odd, he was just here...”

    “Mn. News...run,” observed Pink.

    “Eh-eh eh-eh,” objected Blue. “Not News.”


    “Chick-en,” Blue said firmly, and refused to hear another word about cows.

    Rosie McGurk approached the noisy cell tentatively; he ducked when a squishy rubber eyeball on a keychain sailed into the corridor through the bars, bouncing twice on the floor. “Uhhh...wabba do, Gazza?” Various garden tools, torn sequined shorts, and an “I 8 NY” snowglobe with a monster attacking the city inside it flew threw the air to land haphazardly everywhere.

    The curly-nosed daredevil poked his head through the bars. “Oh! Hey! Rosie! Great, you’re just in time!” He squeezed easily between the iron bars, but found his suitcase wouldn’t fit. He yanked on the handle a couple of times, grunting, then paused, wiping his feathery brow. “Uh, little help?”

    Rosie blinked all three eyes at him. “Wabba do?”

    Gonzo gestured at the two large steamer trunks and rolling suitcase. “Almost time to go! I figured it made sense to go ahead and get packed, y’know, so I won’t be running around later like a chick...er...like someone who doesn’t plan ahead.” He beamed at his monstrous assistant. “Boy, last night was amazing, wasn’t it?”

    “Yagga,” Rosie agreed; he stood there while Gonzo popped back into his cell and flung one of the trunks open, then began stuffing oil-coated hoops, sparklers, and various other flammable implements into it. “Uh...saygga ta pag en alla togebba?”

    “Well, sheesh! You want me to pack fireworks and class-A explosives in with my clothes? Do I look crazy?” Gonzo stared at Rosie; Rosie stared back. Today the Whatever had his green leotard on under a pair of orange plaid slacks; an official ‘Break a Leg’ ballcap covered his head.

    “Uhhhh...” Rosie mumbled.

    “Boy, one more gig tonight to claim my prize, and then it’s off to claim my feathery little minx once and for all, Rosie!” Excited, Gonzo bustled around the tiny cell, continuing to pack more belongings than Rosie recalled him arriving with.

    “Ahh, Gazza...neeba stay tamarrah,” Rosie reminded him timidly.

    “Tomorrow? Why, what’s – oh yeah. That big opening-the-door-to-heck ceremony, right.”

    “Ack!” Rosie put a startled pink paw to his wide toothy mouth. Where the hey had Gonzo heard about that? “Uh...wagga heggate shamony?”

    Back into the corridor in a flash, Gonzo grinned, knocking his friend’s shoulder gently with a fist. “Aw, come on, Rosie! I’ve heard some of the guys talking about it! I know you guys were trying to keep it a surprise for me, so I won’t let on like I know, okay? I promise, when the head of the network opens a portal to a screaming dimension of ultimate horror, I’ll look as shocked as anyone else!” Rosie stared slack-jawed at him. Gonzo looked at his trunks. “Hmm. D’ya think maybe we could borrow one of those cannon trundles? Oh, hey, that reminds me! Pew said I could have one of those cannons that got wrecked in our act; I’m pretty sure I can fix it up, but I’ll need help dragging it up all those stairs...think you could...” He turned to see the expression of shock on Rosie’s homely face, and grimaced. “Yeah, you’re right. A little too much, huh? Okay...what if we asked one of your really big friends to help? I think I saw one of those giant centipedes in my cheering section last night – maybe he’d help us out if I gave him my personal autograph?”

    “Erg,” Rosie choked. Gonzo had already shimmied back through the bars and was jumping up and down on the trunk full of items the post office would never accept, trying to cram it all inside. Rosie wrung his furry hands. If only he could get Gonzo out of here! He knew all too well that tonight’s wrap-up and awards episode of ‘Break a Leg’ would be Gonzo’s last hurrah...and last chance to be on a stage, anywhere, before the Grand Ascension tomorrow night, which the boss had specifically ordered the daredevil be present for... Swallowing down a flight of butterflies in his stomach (they never would stay put unless he remembered to wash them down with ginger ale, which he hadn’t), Rosie glanced up and down the cell block. No other monsters were in earshot. What if...what if he could persuade Gonzo to leave right now? No one would be expecting that! Everyone knew the final show was tonight, and of course Gonzo would be taking first place!

    Steeling himself for the risk, Rosie stopped Gonzo on his next trip through the cell bars. “Gazza...uhhh...tagga minnin?”

    “Uh, sure, Rosie, but you mind if I talk and pack? Got a lot to sort through here...hmm...hey, would you have any use for this pair of cod-liver-oil coated Speedos? I thought they were really cool, but they’re a little big...might fit you, though...” Gonzo looked up with a smile, then saw the trembling lip and wide eyes of his hideously-featured friend. Chagrined, he stopped, and put a hand on McGurk’s shoulder. “Oh...aw, Rosie, I’m so sorry! What an idiot I am sometimes!” He shook his head. “Wow, talk about Mr Insensitive...look...you know what? Why don’t you just come with me?”

    “Cabba wig?”

    “Well, let’s face it, there really won’t be much talent around here for you to fixate on once I’m gone,” Gonzo said, lowering his voice. “I mean, c’mon, what’re you gonna do, become a coffee gofer for Pew? Beneath your talents! I could use an experienced assistant! I’m sure Kermit won’t mind one more hideously deformed mouth to feed. You could sleep on the flyrail – though I’d have to ask you to give me and my chickie some space, if you get my drift,” he continued, grinning and winking. “So, whaddaya say? Want to continue a career in show biz with a real artiste?”

    Rosie gaped at him, poleaxed, unable to reply. Concerned, Gonzo said, “Well, gee, um...I didn’t realize you were so attached to things down here! I mean I’d love to have you along, especially if Camilla okays that tour of the corn belt I’ve always wanted to do, you know, take a little culture to the yokels, but if you’re not up to it –“

    Rosie was on the verge of regaining speech, of blurting out a warning or a thank-you or breaking down and bawling or perhaps all three at once, when a raspy voice broke in: “Hey!” Rosie nearly jumped out of his fake fur. “The scow’s leavin’! Are you guys comin’ or what?”

    Gonzo blinked at an unusual sight: two Grouches lugging tagged suitcases bulging with dirty underwear, rotten banana peels, and spoiled suntan lotion came grumbling along the corridor. At the far end, in the garbage can for this cell block, a green-furred Grouch waited impatiently. “Come on, come on, I ain’t got all day!” he growled at the two laggards. All three of them appeared vaguely familiar to Gonzo.

    “Hey, aren’t you guys the ones who vetted the acts for my show?” he asked the two Grouches as they passed.

    “Grrrrr!” snarled a grayish, elder Grouch with white hair sticking out from the sides of his head and a moldy tie. Rosie scrunched back against the wall to let the mean-looking creatures by; both of them glared at him anyway.

    “What’s it to you, turkeybeak?” the other passing Grouch snapped at Gonzo.

    “Aren’t you going to see the finale tonight?” Gonzo asked.

    “I’d rather not! Heh heh heh!”

    “And I’d rather you two stopped chatting with the local color and got a move on!” the green Grouch yelled from the end of the hall. “We gotta amscray if we wanna catch the last barge out! C’mon!”

    “Grrrrr!” the gray Grouch replied, giving his broken-wheeled suitcase a vicious tug. It burst open, spilling coffee grounds, rotten lettuce, and black, cankerous popcorn kernels all over the corridor floor.

    “Oh fer cryin’ out loud, Cranky...didn’t I tell you they’ll have snacks on the boat? Leave ‘em...they look better there anyway! Heh heh heh...”

    Gonzo, curious, trotted ahead of the traveling Grouches to the one in the trash can. “Are you three really leaving the city? But you’ll miss the big party tomorrow! There’s gonna be a doorway to heck opened and they’ll have cake and ice cream and everything!”

    The green Grouch eyed him morosely. “Tell me about it! Why d’ya think we’re headin’ outta town, short, blue and weird-looking? No Grouch wants to be here when that jazz goes down! Hopefully...” He appeared uneasy. “Ahh, it can’t possibly last too much longer! Whoever heard of monsters all cooperatin’ – outside of my neighborhood, anyways! This’ll blow over, and when it all falls apart, we’ll be back to pick up the pieces...and arrange them artfully into the biggest trash crisis this city’s ever seen! Heh, heh, right, Dan?”

    “I’d rather not!” grumped the dirty-tan-furred Grouch as he threw his suitcase down the trash can, forcing the green Grouch to duck.

    “Hey, watch where you’re tossin’ things! You coulda hit my stash of rotten eggs!” The green Grouch smiled smugly as he shifted over to allow the tan one who seemed only to want to be contrary to climb in and vanish. “Eh, can’t blame him for being all excited! After all, they say Rio is lovely this time a’year!”

    “How are you getting all the way to Rio?” Gonzo wondered. “Is it true there are wormholes in Grouchland?”

    “I’ll say!”

    “Grrrrr!” agreed the gray Grouch, clambering in over the green one; much shoving and arguing ensued before the gray one vanished down the hole. Picking up the topic again, the green one assured Gonzo, “Heck, we got roach-holes and vermin-holes too, not just worms – although the worms make the cutest ones, ‘least I think so...nah, we’re taking a chartered garbage scow down. Did you know Brazil has more trash per capita than most of the rest of the world combined? Heaven!” He shook his head, a dreamy smile on his grungy face. Brightening, he looked at Gonzo and Rosie again. “Sayyy...you guys wanna come with? We could, ah, sell ya a broken sink or a used toilet to bunk in on the trip down – only twenty bucks! Each!”

    “Mebba...errr...” Rosie began, seriously considering the offer. Everyone knew you had to have a Grouch guide to navigate the tunnels through trash to Grouchland, and these might be the last Grouches remaining in the city at this point...and, well, Rio couldn’t be too bad...he might have to shave his fur again, he’d never been comfortable with the heat –

    Gonzo ruined any such feeble musing with a firm shake of his head. “No way José! I have a trophy to claim tonight, and a chicken waiting for me at home after that! Oh, well, and there’s this party thing tomorrow, but frankly it sounds kinda formal...I’m only going if Camilla can get my tux pressed in time...”

    “Suit yourself! So long, suckers! Heh heh heh! Yeah, yeah, stop complainin’, you guys, I already blackmailed that Cooper kid inta coverin’ for you while we’re gone...hey, wait up!” Yelling down the hole, the green Grouch slammed the trashcan lid; it echoed through the corridors. Panicking, Rosie leaped forward and yanked open the lid; the refuse from last night’s studio bash spilled out. He pulled forth empty bottles and tattered streamers and somebody’s undershirt, but there seemed no evidence a tunnel had ever been there. He stared at the aluminum container in despair.

    Gonzo patted him on the back. “Uh...hey, Rosie, honestly...if it’s moldy popcorn you want, I’m pretty sure I saw some back at your cafeteria! Why don’t we go see if they have any?” His eyes became misty. “Geez. I’m really gonna miss you, buddy! Sure you won’t reconsider about coming back to the theatre with me?”

    Rosie opened his mouth, determined to say once and for all everything he’d been forced to keep secret, everything he wanted to warn the clueless Whatever about, and – Eustace swung around the corner. “Eep,” Rosie gulped.

    “What issss all thisss messss?” the doglizard demanded.

    “Oh...uh, there were these two Grouches walking past the bars, and they were going to Rio, and –“ Gonzo began, gesturing at the trash scattered along the floor.

    Eustace growled. “I have no time for ssstupid jokessss! Why are you packing? Do you not wisssh to disssplay your propsss one lassst time on the air?”

    Gonzo shrugged. Rosie did his best to be invisible, standing just behind Gonzo, although he was taller by an eyeball. “Actually, I thought I’d just do a song and dance tonight, if that’s okay. I’m kinda bushed. Hey, where do you guys keep the pay phone around here? I’d really, really like to call my girlfriend!” When Eustace only glared at him, grinding his teeth, Gonzo amended, “Uh...you know...if your boss wants me at his grand descent thing tomorrow, won’t I need her to bring my tux? The only one I have with me is the rainbow-spangled one, and I kinda had the impression you guys were going for more of a Halloween theme...I do have a neon orange cummerbund and tie I can wear...”

    Slowly, the doglizard smiled. “Your...girlfriend. Isss sssshe not...Camilla the sssshicken?”

    “Well, yeah!” Gonzo’s eyes lit up. “Hey, you’ve heard of her?” Excitedly he nudged Rosie, who sucked in a startled yelp. “I told you she was the most famous waterskiing fowl ever! Hah!”

    “Sssshe isss on our...guessst lissst already,” Eustace hissed, toothy lips curling up in a mean smile. “Sssshe hasss ssssigned up to walk the charity haunted housssse event where our underlor—er, our network head isss holding hisss...party.”

    “Oh, fantastic!” Gonzo cried. “Wow, this is so perfect! It’s kismet! Perfect serendipity! Hey, uh, so...” He took the surprised doglizard by the shoulder, and muttered in some embarrassment, “I’ve actually never been to one of these things before...what is the dress code for opening a doorway to a dimension of hellacious monster bugs?”

    Rosie made a strangled sound, but Gonzo didn’t hear, and Eustace happily ignored.

    Gina blinked groggily; no sooner did awareness seep back in but she realized, Those little creeps drugged me. I’m going to kill them all. She was given a further shock when she managed to rub her vision clear, and saw the outfit she was now wearing. “What the—“ A slew of choicely flung profanity still couldn’t adequately express her feelings upon seeing the frilly pink babydoll dress, the white tights and maryjane shoes, and the bejeweled barrettes in her hair. The image the mirror on one wall of this closet-sized space conveyed was herself dollied up like something out of a Shirley Temple film. Furious, Gina stood up from the padded floor and began examining the walls. A chain clinked; looking down, she nearly lost all composure completely. They drugged me, they took OFF my clothes and put me in this disgusting outfit, and they CHAINED MY FEET? She stood a moment, trying to calm her heart, starting to hyperventilate. No! Oh no no no no no no...

    Suddenly a slimy sort of voice sounded overhead; looking up, she could see only a ganglion of wires and hoses. “Toonaaaht, our swinging, swaying bashelorr weel have to choose again, between zee bad and ze uglai, and who knows whezair eezair uf zem are good! Coming raaht up, on ‘I Married a Monstair!’”

    What the @$@%? Gina thought, desperately tugging at the manacles on both her ankles; they seemed heavy, rusty, and possibly unable to even be unlocked again. She pulled hard, hurting her feet, not caring, beginning to panic, but she couldn’t squeeze free of the chains. She turned from one tall wall to the next, frantically seeking escape; suddenly one wall shot upward, hoisted into the high ceiling, revealing bright lights trained on her. She flung her hands over her face, holding in a cry of fear. Oh god what the **** are they doing, what are they doing to me, oh my god Newsie, Newsie where are you –

    “That’s raaht, mah fellow drooling monstairs, you see before you ze epitome of deeesgusting feminine frilliness – but at least it is still feminine, which is all zat counts, non?” A chortle followed this pronouncement. Squinting, desperate to figure out what the situation was and how she might get out of it, Gina finally discerned the figure of some sort of shambling creature in a shabby pirate’s hat parading up and down a few feet in front of the weird little open closet.

    “Hey! Beaky pruneface! Unlock me right the **** now or I will stuff that stupid hat right up your fat nostril!” she yelled, but far from being intimidated, the pirate creature sauntered closer and gave her a lecherous look.

    “Why hellooo mah pet! Do you like your frilly little dress, ma petite chou?”

    “No I do not!” Gina snarled, ripping the barrettes from her hair and flinging them at the creature’s face; they bounced off a pair of Ray-Bans, and the thing chortled again.

    “Wha-ha-hah! A feisty one, no? But what do you sink, Gustar?”

    Gina clapped a hand over her mouth to keep from screaming. The undulating blob which hove into view was like a ‘50s horror flick met Jabba the Hut and had offspring...which were then devoured by this thing. It peered at her with a multitude of watery eyes, in particular staring at her legs. She tried to pull the skimpy frills down farther, but this outfit really hid nothing. “Huuh...well...she’s kind of...plain, Pew...” the blob muttered out of the side of its mouths.

    “Ah know, mon ami, but not to fret! Because once again, we have a special visit froooom...ze Doctair Monstrufyer!”

    Applause greeted this statement. Gina backed against the mirrored wall, but suddenly all the walls around her fell away, simple flats, and more lights came up...and she clearly saw the lush, designer-decor bachelor pad set, the beaming skinny Muppet in a lab coat with a big felt heart pinned to one lapel, and the apparatus of syringes and hoses slowly lowering over her. “Oh god no,” she whispered, but there was no way to run, no way to kick, and though she ducked and tried to dodge the needles swooping down at her, they kept coming.

    “Just simmer down, you poor ugly thing,” the lab-coated Muppet crooned, to the laughter of the audience. “Good ol’ Doc Van Neuter is going to make everything allll better...or should I say, Doctor Feelbad?”

    He giggled. Gina lunged to one side and the other, but felt a jab in her left arm. Crying out, she instinctively slapped at it, but then another sharp poke hit her upper right thigh. As she sank to the floor, crying, she felt something even worse: a rippling feeling all over her skin.

    “Can you do purple this time?” the blob was asking. “But...I kinda like the red fur...it’s exotic, ya know?”

    Van Neuter grinned. “Sure, babyjelly! I can do anything you want!”

    That horrible smile was the last thing she saw before losing consciousness again.
    Ruahnna likes this.
  14. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    You evil evil wonderful writer.

    Things I liked...
    Rhonda in the rat cage/cooler.
    The whole bit where another female rat did her Helen Ready impersonation.
    Rhonda as the Statue of Liberty, unintentionally.
    Her blushing at Bubba's comments.
    The whole speech about who was here at New York first.
    :sing: Old New York.
    Was once New Amsterdam.
    Why'd they change it, I can't say...
    Anyhew, very American Tale-ish to have the rats take center stage.

    Uncle D leading Newsie past the trembling minions, through the cells, with the spectral dragon's grandstanding in movie monster form.

    *Waves hi to the Martians, laughing at their confusion over cows and chickens. All they're missing is a devil.
    Sorry, that's a reference to one of Cartoon Network's earliest shows.

    If I didn't know better, I'd think Newsie was portraying a wereraven.
    UD: Wereraven?
    :batty: Dunno, you saw him last.
    *Comes back in with popcorn.

    For some reason I think Newsie might pop up to the rescue, but that's another segment of this loaded chapter.

    Poor Rosie, unable to say anything when he wants to say so much.

    *Cheers at the cameo by :grouchy: leading the other grouches to the trashcan portal.
    :batty: Rio? That's the site of the next summer games.
    UD: And it was an okay animated movie, at least we beat it's signature song for an Oscar earlier this year.

    *Laughs at the snack spillage.

    Why is Guster still competing for new ladies on I Married a Monster!? Didn't he end with the lovely Susan, the one with the venom fangs and gorgonean hair seen in his first appearance? And Gina's going under the knife/needle so to spook. Reminds me of when Lydia was to receive a full-bodied monster makeover to the cameras of the operating theater in the Neitherworld's hospital.

    Thank you for updating as usual, it never fails to put a smile on our faces. :scary:
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  15. newsmanfan

    newsmanfan Well-Known Member

    Well, the gag on "I Married a Monster!" is like "Let's Make a Deal": Does the blob want Susan #23, or what the Doc's going to do to this latest victi--contestant? I meant contestant...

    What? No comment on "two feet to the floor, etc"? That bit always cracks me up, no matter what anyone says about MFS!

    Wereraven? Why are you talking like that?
    Dunno..I thought YOU wanted to.
    Ruahnna likes this.
  16. Ruahnna

    Ruahnna Well-Known Member

    I am desperately looking for the "Easy" button that will make all of this GO AWAY! Are you sure nothing awful is going to happen to Van Neuter? Look again, won't you? I'm positive he's in for some serious bad karma....

    Good grief, but Deadly's adorable. I'm pretty sure I dated him back in college, and his jokes weren't any younger then. It seems like there are enough of our guys below to actually be worth something when it all goes down (or up, as the case may be) so I'm not giving up hope. I'm also hoping that they were stupid enough to take off Gina's necklace, so that a little cosmic chaos can fall once Newsie catches up to her...if he ever stops running...

    Rhonda officially needs to go out with Bubba. Brawn and bombshell make a good combo--maybe they could double date with Harve and Gladys? That would make an interesting foursome for bridge, at any rate.

    And Gonzo needs to wake up and smell his future being eaten away by something horrible. I know that his imperviousness to danger is what allows him to perform such death-defying stunts, but I need him to notice what's going on around him now that the show is over! And take Rosie WITH you! He could fit right in that empty spot in the arches.

    You are drawing all the threads tighter on your grand tapestry! I can't wait to see the finished product!

    P.S. Um, just don't get anything sticky or slimy on Piggy, okay? We both know that won't end well....
    The Count likes this.
  17. newsmanfan

    newsmanfan Well-Known Member

    Hey -- this is HORROR. It's not supposed to be pretty. Or easy. But it IS also Muppets, so there will be happy endings...for MOST of the characters...

    I figure the monsters caught up in the Big Uggy's grand scheme are rather like the everyday Germans. When things are scary all around, it may feel easier to go along with it than to speak up...especially when you never see the speaker-uppers again. Many of those folks weren't bad, just weak...

    Heh heh heh. Uh oh. Ru caught a plot point I tried to sneak by. I'll have to be sneakier...

    Hmm. Bubba over Chaz, huh? I'll consider it. Bubba would certainly be more forthright about his opinions, and is less full of ravado (that's self-pushiness for rats). If you can demonstrate that bridge game to me, you're on!

    Gonzo's not dumb...just...coming at the world, and especially scary things, from a completely different perspective. Cake and ice cream! C'mon, it'll be fun! Even if he does have to wear a tux. :concern:

    Thanks for the patience, guys! I'm still having to drag myself back to this, away from a more insistent character right now. Appreciate everyone sticking with it!
    Ruahnna likes this.
  18. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    So this means you win the bet between you and Ru as who posted a new chapter first.
    What'dya win?

    Bubba and Rhonda, yes, that ship I support.
    Them and Harve and Gladys for bridge... Sure, they could borrow Gina's deck.
    Only now have I come to realize that the deck me and my paternal grandma used for bridge was an almost complete minor arcana, the 10's were missing, along with the Queens. The Pages were 10, Knights 11, and Kings 12.
    Then again, I wonder if they'd play mah-jang instead, *shrugs.

    The entire segment of MFS where Rizzo's acclamating himself to labrat life is funny. That's probably why he got all the stuff from that scene as accessories packed with his action figure, the table, cheese, drink, plates marked Cheese and Poison, and boxing glove arm.

    Okay, let's move it fright along, we've got people to spook and Muppets to plunge into all kinds of heck.
    *Readies wand and megaton explosive for ascention night, if it works the same way that last ascention we witnessed did.
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  19. Ruahnna

    Ruahnna Well-Known Member

    Oopsie! (And yes, I was thinking about the way Uncle Deadly said it....)
    newsmanfan likes this.
  20. WebMistressGina

    WebMistressGina Well-Known Member

    I'm like five reviews behind here!

    I most definitely love the fact that Gonzo, of all people, is hip to what's going on and is completely chill about it! I got to his first sentence and immediately sat back in my chair, laughed, and said, "OMG Gonzo!"

    Oh Rosie! Why didn't you spill your guts when you had the chance!? I so see the big guy saving our blue weirdo at the end or hoping that Gonzo realize, "hey wait a minute! I'm the sacrifice! Cool! Wait...no. Not cool!"

    Eagerly awaiting the final stroke of midnight!!
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