Posts Tagged ‘Fanfiction’

The Muppet Show Season 6 Pt. 6

June 14, 2021

Lily Tomlin

Who knows where Lily Tomlin was headed after attending a technical high school and then getting into Wayne State University in her hometown of Detroit. However, she auditioned for a play and that was it. She had been bitten by the showbiz bug and she changed majors. She graduated from college and started to do stand-up comedy, hanging around in Detroit before she headed to the New York City scene. She decided to continue to study acting at the HB Studio. She got onto the Merv Griffin Show and then the Garry Moore Show which primed her for the biggest upswing in her career. She landed a part in the cast of Martin and Rowan’s Laugh-in where she developed several memorable characters and honed her craft. Her success with Laugh-In also got her a hosting gig on Saturday Night Live. Meanwhile, her movie career also picked up as she was cast in Robert Altman’s Nashville which got her an Academy Award nomination. She was in tons of other hits like 9 to 5 and All of Me. Her career has continued to flourish and she is still a very big star.

One of the reasons that Tomlin would be perfect for The Muppet Show is that she already had experience with Sesame Street at the time. She sang and signed the famous song “Sing” on the show along with other appearances. At the time she was a renowned comedian who also had singing and acting chops which would serve her well on the show. She had worked on one of the most famous television variety shows in history which would be excellent preparation.

Cold Opening: Scooter comes in to give Lily her warning but apologizes when she’s on the phone (a little bit like Ernestine) but when he leaves she reveals the phone isn’t even plugged in.

Guest Arc: Sam the Eagle is on the warpath again, trying to make the show more classy. He has doubts about Tomlin but she promises to be on her best behavior and ends up mocking him.

Guest Acts:
“Dancing Queen” (Abba) with Miss Piggy and full-size Muppets who can dance
Lily has a scene with Sam the Eagle where she pretends to be as dour and serious as he is (a la The Consumer Advocate Lady)
“The Last Duet” (Manilow) Lily does sign language while singing and Animal struggles to keep up so Sweetums steps in.

Donald O’Connor

It is hard to pin down exactly where Donald was born since his parents were a vaudeville team and were always traveling. It is agreed that it was somewhere in Illinois and probably in Chicago. Apparently, his parents started his dancing career at 13 months by holding him by the back of the neck as he wiggled around to the music on stage. Unfortunately, a lot of his family died during his early childhood leaving him with only his mother and an older brother. The three formed a dancing act and Donald got to be really good at dancing without any formal training. In fact, he never did go to school at all. He made the jump from vaudeville to film when he was hired by Paramount mostly to play kid parts and, of course, to dance. He then moved to Universal where he was quickly paired with Peggy Ryan as their version of Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland. The Andrews Sisters were usually along for the ride as well. Not long after he came back from the War, he had a much-celebrated role in Singin’ In the Rain. He continued on Broadway, film, and television until his death in the late 90s.

Obviously, O’Connor would be great for the Muppet Show because of his experience as a performer and also his many skills. While he was not the dancer in the 1980s that he was in the 50s, he still knew how to dance and sing and he had great comic timing. On a side note, Singin’ In the Rain is one of my favorite musicals. O’Connor was a legendary performer in musicals on stage and screen and was great at adapting to the needs of their show.

Cold Open: Miss Piggy brushes past Scooter as he gives the warning and spills coffee on Donald.

Guest Arc: Miss Piggy is excited to sing with Donald but spills coffee on him and tries to make it up throughout the show but keeps accidentally injuring him. In the end, he promises that there is no problem between them.

Guest Acts:
“Make ‘Em Laugh” with Fozzy and Gonzo
“Merrily Song” with Kermit at Rowlf’s piano
“It’s Delovely” with Ms. Piggy

Jerry Orbach

Orbach’s dad was born in The Bronx and his father was a vaudeville entertainer. He never performed on stage with his father but he did eventually leave college at Northwestern University a year early to pursue acting. He studied at the legendary Actor’s Studio under Lee Strasberg. He made his way onto Off-Broadway and Broadway. He quickly made a name for himself in tons of shows and was in the original casts for The Fantasticks, Chicago, and 42nd Street among many other shows. He started work in television and film working as a regular on Murder She Wrote and Dirty Dancing. He had his last major singing role as Lumiere in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. After that, he was cast in the role he is now more known for as Detective Lennie Briscoe in Law and Order.

Orbach would work for the Muppet Show because he was a Broadway legend who was just starting to work more on film. He has a brilliant singing voice and a charm that served him very well in his career. Although he was starting to take on more serious roles, I think he would relish the chance to have some musical fun with the Muppets.

Cold Open: Jerry goofs around with Pops, putting on that charm

Guest Arc: The Muppets are excited when they hear that a Broadway scout will be at the show so they get Jerry to help them out. It turns out to be band info that Scooter heard.

Guest Acts:
“Lullaby of Broadway” with Rowlf, Kermit, Fozzie, and Piggy
“24 Hours from Tulsa” (Bacharach) with Lubbock Lou and his Jughuggers
“Razzle Dazzle” with the Electric Mayhem

Poor Unfortunate Souls: China Pt. 8

June 12, 2021

Aladdin and Anna signaled and Merrida brought the wagon around. After they loaded up, Merrida was perched on top of the wagon, staying low and almost looking like a pile of rags. The others huddled near the front with Anna driving. They tried to go as fast as they could but there was suddenly a shrieking cry from above. Four dark monsters with wings had spotted them and were wheeling around to come after them. They were the same as the creatures the three of them had seen before but none of them knew they could fly.

They dove as one and Merrida sprang to her feet and manage to fire three shots in rapid succession. She nailed two of the beasts but her third shot was deflected. The beasts landed hard on the wagon and Aladdin climbed onto the back, sword in hand, and sliced at one of them just in time to save Merrida from getting hit. Together, Merrida and Aladdin fought off the beasts. Aladdin skewered one on his sword and the other fell under the wagon’s wheel, bringing it dangerously close to breaking. Still, the wagon kept going and the witnesses were dead. Hopefully, they could get back without alerting any more of the army.

The rest of the ride was a lot more peaceful and they made it back to the compound quickly. Rapunzel was instantly there checking them for wounds, fussing over them while Mulan checked over the fireworks. Both the fireworks and the three heroes seemed to be alright. They had an impromptu meeting right there in the courtyard next to the wagon.

“Excellent!” Mulan said. “This is exactly what we need. With this, we’ll be able to distract the evil army and inflict damage on their defenses. If it creates an opening, we can slip through and see what we can find.” Her excitement was infectious and everybody’s spirits around her rose. For those who knew her, knew that she was the hero of China and had been honored twice by the Emperor. The outsiders saw that and got the message. Mulan was a big deal and her people believed in her.

“We need to move soon,” Anna said. “We encountered some of the creatures on the way back and they weren’t easy to kill.” She was still a little rattled by the experience but that only made her resolve to keep helping all the stronger.

“But they did go down,” Aladdin said. “I think this plan could work. They’re not unstoppable.” He was right, the monsters had not stood up very well to their weapons.

“The dragon is another thing entirely,” Mulan said. “but we will cross that river when we reach it.” This made them all picture a dragon which definitely brought up different pictures but none of those pictures were good.

“I once took on a giant snake,” Aladdin said, trying to be encouraging. “For a few seconds, at least.”

“I think we work well together,” Merrida said. “The fight on the wagon proved that. We’ll do alright.” She was proud and brave but her words seemed to be more than just empty bluster. It was more like hope.

“Then we’ll make our move after sunset,” Mulan said. “That will increase the effect of the fireworks and give us cover otherwise. Rest well and I will give the soldiers their orders in the plan.”

“Are you forgetting something?” Anna asked. “You’re needed here. They need a leader and if we fail, they’ll need somebody to come up with another plan. Not that I expect us to fail or anything. We’re going to do great.”

“I have to go,” Mulan said. “We have to put everything into this plan. I cannot stay behind just in case. The backup plan will just have to be thought of by somebody else.”

“Maybe I can do it,” Shang said, walking out of the infirmary. He was not quite standing upright but he was walking and he was conscious which was a great improvement.

Mulan rushed to hug and kiss her husband. “Shang!” she cried out. “You’re alright?”

Shang nodded. “I’m getting there,” he said. “I need you to finish this so I can get some more rest, though.” He looked tired but determined. This was the man that Mulan had fallen in love with and she was overjoyed to see him on his feet again.

“That’s the plan,” Mulan said. “I need to go with these outsiders to try and make that plan a reality.”

Shang smiled. “If anybody can pull off a crazy plan to save China, it’s my wife,” Shang said. “I believe in you.” The two of them kissed again.

“I’ll be back as soon as I can,” Mulan said. “I promise.”

Poor Unfortunate Souls: Hawaii Pt. 8

June 5, 2021

Adam hesitated when Maui asked him for his story point blank but part of changing for the better was confronting the past straight on. He took a deep breath.

“I was a wealthy prince in the countryside of France,” he said. “I was arrogant, I was pushy, and I was practically begging for karma. Finally, it showed up in the form of an enchantress. She appeared in the form of a beggar so I had my servants turn her away. She repaid me by cursing me to live forever in that beast form that you saw earlier. She also cursed all of my servants to become all of the furniture and objects in the castle. If I did not find true love, we would all remain in our cursed forms forever.”

“What happened?” Moana asked. “Obviously, you broke the curse. Well, sort of.”

Adam nodded. Here came the worst part. “I took a woman hostage and kept her in my castle. I’m not proud of it. It was a horrible thing to do and no explanation could excuse my behavior. I bullied her, I raged at her, and I treated her horribly while my servants were courteous and kind. Her kindness and compassion softened my heart especially since I did not deserve it. She broke the spell and freed me and I’ve been trying since to make it up to her and be a better person.”

“Except you can still turn into that beast,” Maui said. “What’s that about?” It was a good question. It definitely gave Adam pause. He spent a lot of time in his own head but he easily recognized that he was not very wise. He rarely had the answer. He paid people to have the answer.

“I don’t know,” Adam said with a sigh. “Magic never really made any sense to me. Maybe I still need the Beast for now. Maybe this time the Beast will get me back to Belle.”

“Maybe,” Moana said. “or maybe once we fix things, you’ll go back to normal. That happened on my adventure.” She thought of how a little bit of compassion

“Our adventure,” Maui said, feeling a compulsion to correct her.

“Yeah, I guess you did some things too,” Moana said, gently teasing the demigod. “and now we’re a trio. We’re going to solve this thing and get things back to normal. Well, as normal as they ever are.”

“All those people out there are cursed like I was,” Adam said. “Turned into animals. We need to reverse the curse and set them free. I know how they must feel.”

“Too bad they can’t just turn back like I can,” Maui said, raising his hook for a moment. Moana caught sight of the hook and her eyes widened with a sudden realization. That look made Maui as nervous as it did from the beginning. He had learned not to underestimate her.

“Maybe they can,” Moana said. “but you’re going to have to let Pleakley and Jumba study your hook.”

“My hook!?” Maui yelled. “You must be crazy.”

“She’s right,” Adam said. “If that thing lets you change into animals and back then maybe it can help all of those people.” He shrugged. It seemed as good an idea as any.

“This ‘thing’ is a gift from the Gods,” Maui said indignantly. “It’s not a toy. It’s mine. I went through a lot to get it back.” He looked at Moana and crossed his arms. “We went through a lot to get it back.” It meant a lot that Maui was sharing credit. It almost never happened.

“We’ll make sure they’re careful with it,” Moana said. “It won’t be damaged again.”

Maui sighed. “If it will help, they can study it,” he said. “But I will watch their every movie.”

“Deal,” Moana said with a little laugh. “Thank you.” That thank you was genuine and heartfelt. Maui was close to her heart even if he could be a total goof and a selfish pig sometimes.

“You’re welcome,” Maui said gruffly before rolling his eyes and smiling. “Maui to the rescue again.”

A Second Chance Pt. 3

May 22, 2021

Kane Thalek walked into the bar flanked by his friends Etiva Xankath and Calvin Bastian. The place was dimly lit and full of miners. The three cadets looked fairly out of place since their training had made them easy to pick out as military from their bearing. They were also the youngest in the place. On top of all of that Bastian and Xankath were the only non-Coridanites in the place and a human and a klingon definitely stood out. Kane took the lead because this was his homeworld. These were his people even though he had been guided away from the mines at a very young age by his father.

Kane headed over to the bartender and ordered shots of the local whiskey for him and his friends. He then looked around before he leaned in conspiratorily.

“Tell me, friend,” Kane said. “Where can a few young people get involved in the fight against the Dominion?” It was blunt but he figured why beat around the bush when he could just dive in and get to what they wanted.

“The Dominion?” the bartender asked. “Why would you go picking a fight with them?” The man behind the bar looked absolutely baffled. You would have thought that Kane had been talking backwards while tap dancing from his expression.

“The Dominion are coming here,” Etiva said in an almost hiss. “The people here should really be ready to fight.” There was urgency and anger in her voice. She always had a temper.

Calvin tried to cover for Etiva’s aggression. “We’re here to help with that,” he said. “Any way that we can.” Calvin had a cool head and a serious demeanor when it suited his purpose. He was often the voice of reason and logic between the three of them.

“I don’t know anything about that,” the bartender said gruffly. “I just serve drinks to these simple workers, men and women of the land.”

A hand clapped onto Kane’s shoulder from behind and a strong voice sounded. “No need to play dumb, Salta,” the voice said. “These aren’t real Starfleet, they’re just little puppies.”

Kane and his friends turned to see a tall Coridanite man flanked by tense-looking fiends of is own.

“We may not be full officers,” Kane said. “but I think we can do some good here.”

“Uh huh,” the man said. “They keep telling us that Starfleet is coming. Starfleet will protect us. Trust in Starfleet. I prefer to hedge our bets. Starfleet can’t do everything.”

“We’re not here as Starfleet,” Kane said. “We’re here as fighters. We want to help. If you can tell us how to do that, we’re yours.”

The man laughed and the sound was not kind. “I might be able to use a handful of Starfleet pups,” he said. “but you’re going to get your hands dirty. No stun setting, you understand?”

“We understand,” Kane said. “No mercy for anybody who would attack Coridan.”

“No mercy,” the man said with a nod of agreement. He looked at Etiva and Calvin who also nodded their agreement. “And you’ll be alright dealing with, shall we say, less than savory citizens? Some of the people I work with have had a few run-ins with Starfleet and the local laws.”

“A fighter can’t exactly be picky in a war,” Kane said. “The Dominion are doing far worse than a few criminals in the ranks of freedom fighters. We’re not interested in what your people have done in the past. We’re interested in fighting for Coridan’s future.”

“Fair enough,” the man said. “Welcome to the Red Pickaxe, we’ll get you situated and armed and in with a squad.”

“What’s your name?” Calvin asked, Kane shooting him a look.

“That’s not important right now.” the man said. “Maybe you’ll learn it when I trust you more. For now, you can call me The General.”

The Muppet Show Season 6 Pt. 4

May 17, 2021

S06E10 Tito Puente and his band

Tito relied on the GI Bill to pay to study at the Julliard School of Music. He was classically trained in conducting, orchestration, and music theory. He drew on his heritage growing up in Spanish Harlem to bring Afrolatino to the people. He was an expert in playing a lot of styles initially popularized in Hispanic countries like Boogaloo, Salsa, Latin Jazz, and more. He asserted during his lifetime that Latin Jazz was African in origin. He was inspired by Cuban and Puerto Rican sounds in his neighborhood and the Big Band sounds on the radio. While he was a bandleader, he played the timbales and the vibraphone which helped to keep the band’s rhythm. His first album was released in 1951 and he kept going from there and ended up making or appearing on what looks like nearly a hundred albums. He was a prolific musician, composer, and conductor and gained a lot of fame in the music world. He even guested on The Simpsons not long before his death. He was known as the “King of Latin Music”.

Puente would be perfect for The Muppet Show because he seemed to have boundless energy. His music was suffused with passion. His most famous song was “Oye Como Va” which was later further popularized by Carlos Santana. The Muppet Show definitely had a go-to style but they also tried to celebrate other cultures and I bet they would have loved to incorporate Puente’s unique sound and style.

Cold Open: As Tito approaches Pops to check in, Floyd and Dr. Teeth protest him trying to replace them.

Guest Arc: Tito and Kermit try to broker peace between the bands since Tito is a big fan of the Electric Mayhem. In the end, they form a supergroup for one night. Tito also enlists Miss Piggy to illustrate that the emotion in music extends beyond whatever language the song is in.

Guest Acts:
“Oye Como Va” (Tito Puente) with mambo dancers
“Guantanamera” (Traditional) with Miss Piggy
“Ran Kan Kan” (Tito Puente) with the Electric Mayhem

S06E11 Billie Hayes

Billie Hayes was born to be an entertainer. She started performing professionally at the age of nine. She took up tap dancing and apparently never stopped feeling the rush of performance. She was from Illinois so her options for growth were not so many but she started touring with Vince Genovese’s orchestra and then struck out on her own tour. She could sing, dance, and act which made her one of those sought-after ‘triple threats’. She got a big break in Lil’ Abner on Broadway and did several national tours of various Broadway shows. It was no small wonder that Sid and Marty Kroft picked her to be one of the main players on their television show HR Pufnstuff. It was here that she would play her most memorable role of Witchypoo, the main villain of the series and a role she would reprise on Lidsville and the Banana Splits Adventure Hour. She also played a similar witch character as a guest spot on Bewitched. She also played the heroic but pathetic Weenie the Genie on Lidsville. She went on to have a great career in voice acting for various very popular cartoon series.

She would be a superb guest for the Muppet Show for many obvious reasons. First, she is a triple threat and just about able to do anything required of a guest on the show. Second, she obviously did not take herself too seriously and was able to do comedy. Third, she could portray a larger-than-life character that still lives in the minds of those who grew up watching her. Fourth, and probably most important, she worked with puppets and people in suits already so she would be suited to the rigors and particular challenges of working with Henson’s crew.

Cold Open: Kermit complains to Scooter and Fozzy that they have no special guest when there is a familiar cackle and a witch buzzes them on her broom.

Guest Arc: There is no guest star but when the Muppets try to continue on with the show anyway, they are terrorized by a witch who succeeds in taking over the show. At the end, Billie reveals herself as the witch and thanks Fozzy for booking her which Fozzy forgot about.

Guest Acts:
“I Put a Spell On You” (Jay Hawkins) as the cast runs in terror
“I’m So Bad” (Oingo Boingo) with hypnotized followers
“Season of the Witch” (Donovan) with the Electric Mayhem

S06E12 Weird Al Yankovic

Alfred Yankovic took his father’s advice to heart when he told him that the key to being a success is to do what makes you happy for a living. He started playing accordion at age 7, at first having the instrument pushed on him by his parents. There was already a famous accordion player named Frankie Yankovic (no relation) and his parents felt another accordion-playing Yankovic made sense. Al was often stuck inside because his mother was overprotective and did not want him playing outside. This gave him plenty of time to practice his instrument. It also allowed him to listen to a lot of comedy and rock and roll albums and set out to figure out how to combine the two on the accordion. It was at this point that his love for comedy and the fringes of pop culture lead him to the Dr. Demento Show, an absolutely insane comedy radio show who agreed to play Al’s music on air. He went on to have a particularly unique music career that had a foundation built from parody songs. However, he does write his own songs (often pastiches of another band’s style). He even got to write and star in his own movie, UHF.

Weird Al would have been great for the Muppet Show because his sense of humor is just as strange as the Muppets. His enthusiasm for entertaining is contagious and it is hard not to laugh along with him. Unlike many parody artists, his work (and the work of his band) was high quality and his musical skill was (and is clear to see. At this point, his career was really just taking off since in 1983 he would have been only four years into his career as a recording artist. His movie UHF proves that he was willing to roll with just about any idea as long as it makes somebody smile.

Cold Open: Scooter gives Weird Al his warning but he is being petitioned by various foods to write songs about them.

Guest Arc: Weird Al makes it his mission to make Waldorf and Stadtler enjoy the show and goes all out with the help of the Muppets. In the end, Waldorf and Stadtler challenge him to sing something original but they don’t like that either.

Guest Acts:
“Another One Boards the Bus” (Yankovic) with the Electric Mayhem
“My Balogna” (Yankovic) with his accordion
“School Cafeteria” (Yankovic) with the food

Summers in Neptune Pt. 2

May 1, 2021

When Buffy and Veronica pushed open the doors to the Library, they immediately spotted the two Queens of the Library. Willow Rosenberg sat on the floor with a circle of old books around her. Occasionally, the books would float into the air and travel to the shelves only to be replaced by another floating book. It was trippy. Cindy “Mac” Mackenzie was similarly surrounded by computer monitors although none of them ever floated. The two of them had immediately gotten along and worked together pretty much seamlessly. They had a fairly similar energy even if they came from different backgrounds.

“Hey Willow, hey Mac,” Buffy said. “How’s it going?” Even though she was literally battle-hardened, Buffy ended up being a bit sunnier than Veronica. Veronica found that a bit more amusing than Buffy did. Maybe it was sad.

“Any information to report?” Veronica asked. “It’s still pretty nasty out there and that needs to stop so we can go back to shoveling 09ers shit.”

Mac turned from her screens. “Language, Veronica,” but she said it smirking. “When will you put your claws away?”

“We have friends where claws are literally a thing,” Willow said. “It’s a lot to adjust to.”

“I can only imagine,” Mac said with a shudder.

“I don’t think we’ll have to with this Hellmouth,” Veronica said. “Sooner or later we’ll meet every monster that ever was. We need to solve this thing.”

“It’s not quite like one of your detective cases,” Buffy said. “We can’t just tie it in a neat bow right away.”

“I know,” Veronica said. “but for the record, my longest case took years to solve. Any problem can be solved.”

“Let’s not rehash the painful past,” Mac said and it was beyond true. “We should confront the painful present. Let’s move on.”

“I’ll go first,” Willow said, standing up. “I’ve been studying this new Hellmouth with my research assistants. Dawn and Wallace have been working so hard that I gave them the afternoon off. They’re getting ice cream.”

“What have you found out?” Veronica asked. Straight to the point, that was Veronica Mars. When she had a problem to solve, she was like a dog with a bone.

“Well,” Willow said, shrugging a little bit. “I’ve read a lot of the local lore, I’ve monitored the ley lines, and I’ve consulted the local fey folk.”

“Neptune has fey folk?” Veronica asked, interrupting but the phrase had been to ridiculous to let pass. She had grown up with Midsummer Night’s Dream and Tinkerbell. It had been a long time since she had clapped.

“Plenty,” Willow said. “I’ll tell them you said ‘hi’. Actually, I won’t. They’re really dangerous to get to know and the less exposure you have, the better. Anyway, I have a few leads. More like linchpins. Demons and other nasties that, if we take them out, the Hellmouth could asplode.”

“Asplode, huh?” Buffy asked. “Sounds good to me and yes I heard the word ‘could’. Come find us when you have some specific targets to stake.”

“We’ll rustle up Logan. Kennedy, and Xander and get out there and take care of business for you,” Veronica said.

“Sounds good,” Willow said. “I’ll even join you if only to protect my lovely wife.”

“Well, that makes sense to me,” Veronica said. “I’ve got to protect my boyfriend.”

“I guess I’ll protect Xander,” Buffy said. “Hmm. Any word from Angel and Spike’s crew?”

Willow fought not to smirk and almost managed it. “We’ve tried every method I know of between technology and magic and there’s nothing,” she said. “They are not on this plane of existence.”

“What does that mean?” Buffy asked, clearly worried.

“It means that we’ll have to wait for them to explain it when they get back,” Willow said. “I’m sure it will be an amazing story.”

“You’re sure they’ll come back?” Buffy asked.

“Angel and Spike have both returned from death several times,” Willow said. “I don’t think I can ever count them out again. Not for sure.”

“True,” Buffy said. “I guess we should move on with the briefing.”

Zeus’ Other Daughter – A Percy Jackson Story

April 30, 2021

Corinna sat down by herself at a table in the mess hall after a full day of training. Nobody dared to approach her and anybody who looked at her, tried to look away quickly. She was by far the most powerful fighter at Camp Prometheus. She was a daughter of Zeus and it showed in her bearing and on the field of training. She also seemed to hunger more and thirst more than anybody else at the camp. She was a legend and she had not even reached the age of 18 yet. People tended to steer clear of her because of how fierce she could be and she preferred being alone anyway. So it was a surprise to everyone, including Corinna, when Freddy set his food down on the table and sat on the bench opposite her. The room tensed and held their breath together.

Corinna narrowed her eyes. “Are you new?” she asked in a gruff voice. “Nobody sits there.”

Freddy just smiled brightly. “I am new. Thanks for noticing,” he said. Then he slid a foot to his right. “Is this better? Can I sit here?”

Lightning actually sparked in Corinna’s eyes. “Don’t mock me,” she said. “People who mock me end up getting turned into a smear on the ground.”

Freddy shrugged. “I’m not mocking you,” he said. “I saw an open seat and I took it. It’s not all about you.”

Corinna just grumbled and looked back at her food. She was too hungry to teach this newbie a lesson. Maybe later.

“My name is Freddy,” he said with that same smile. “Son of Eos. That is how people introduce themselves around here, right?” Like Camp Half-Blood and Camp Jupiter, Camp Prometheus was a place for demigods to train and grow in safety. The only difference is that it was mostly made up of the children of Titans and those who might not fit in at the other camps. Of course, that meant that a lot of people there had a parent who was currently imprisoned in Tartarus. It made for a pretty strong bond.

“Eos, huh?” Corinna said without looking up. “I guess that explains why you’re so sunny.”

“That’s hilarious,” Freddy said with a deadpan expression. “I’ve never heard that before. I’m guessing Kronos is your daddy from the way everybody around here thinks your hot shit.”

Corinna looked up at that and started at Freddy for a beat before looking back at her food. “Zeus, actually.” She mumbled.

Freddy whistled in surprise. “The Thunder from Olympus, huh?” he asked. “Shouldn’t you be at Camp Half-Blood?”

Corinna sat her fork down deliberately and looked at Freddy again. “My mother and I disagreed with how those Gods carry themselves,” she said. “I had a friend who came here because they wouldn’t let her come to Camp Half-Blood with me. This is the only place that would take me after everything went down.”

“Zeus and his group are pretty unfair,” Freddy said. “Like our camp namesake got a pretty bum rap. He deserved better.”

“Probably,” Corinna said. “He’s kind of an ass, though.”

“You met him?” Freddy asked with surprise.

“He came around,” Corinna said. “Before the last Titanomachy.”

“The war with the Gods?” Freddy asked. “Wish I had been here.”

“No you don’t,” Corinna said. “It sucked. It was tense and nobody was happy.”

“Are you ever happy?” Freddy asked, half-serious and half-teasing.

Corinna sighed. “I would have been happy if they let me fight,” she said. “They grounded me and everybody else here.”

“You would fight your cousins and your dad?” Freddy asked. “That’s pretty heavy.”

“He never gave me anything but grief,” Corinna said. “and I just want to fight.”

“Why?” Freddy asked, watching Corinna’s face.

Corinna shrugged but inside she was thinking ‘because it’s the only thing I’m good at’.

The Yeti Adventure – A Disney S.E.A. Story

April 29, 2021

Danny Reed had a twinge of regret as he watched the plane fly away but any thoughts in his head were blown away by the cold wind that kicked up. He looked around and hurried to catch up with Mariah Mystic. She looked over her shoulder and gave him a mocking smile.

“Keep up, Reed!” She yelled over the roaring wind. “Keep up or you’re out!”

Danny grunted and kept moving in her wake as they walked away from the landing strip and toward a small cabin. They had taken several planes and ended up near a mountain range in Nepal. It was absolutely frigid and Danny felt like he had not been adequately prepared for that. The plane was too small to fully gear up so they had to get inside quickly. The cabin was not very warm but at least there was no wind. Mariah pointed at the fireplace and Danny grumbled and got to work starting a fire. Thankfully there was dry wood. After a while, the place started to warm up and Mariah and Danny took off their jackets. They sat down.

“You’re not doing that bad a job, Reed,” Mariah said. She had hung a kettle over the fire and they were waiting for it boil. There were rations stocked in the cabin but no actual food. “You still with me?”

Danny fought not to sigh. “I’m still with you,” he said. “I’m not as used to cold weather as you are, apparently.”

“Better get used to it, Reed,” Mariah said. “The Society of Explorers and Adventurers are expected to go anywhere on Earth at the drop of a hat. You never know where knowledge might be hiding.”

“I don’t think it’s knowledge that is hiding here in Nepal, huh?” Danny asked. “We’re here on a specific mission.” He started to unwrap and dig into his rations.

“Why don’t you recite our mission, Reed,” Mariah said with a smirk. “In full.”

“Come on,” Danny said with a groan. “Is this a test?”

“It’s only a test if you’re about to fail it,” Mariah said. “I only do this kind of thing to prepare you for life in the S. E. A.. Reed. I grew up in this life. My family goes back generations in the Society so I was raised with all of this. You’re new. I want to make sure that you get caught up with the rest of us. It’s not personal.”

“It feels a little personal,” Danny said. “I mean, I can’t really blame you if your perception of my family is colored by your grandfather.”

Mariah took a deep breath. “The fact that my grandfather expelled your grandfather from the Society does not color my opinion of you,” she said. “It was a shameful chapter in the Society’s history and it was unfortunate that Garrett Reed earned his expulsion.”

“What did he do to get tossed?” Danny asked. “I never really asked and gramps got really distant after it all went down. I never saw him again, really. Not until the funeral.”

“My condolences on that last part,” Mariah said with all sincerity. “Nobody in the Society wished for Garrett Reed to die. My grandfather caught him acting inappropriately in regards to some mystical items in a dig in Egypt. After his expulsion, he clashed with Doctor Indiana Jones on several occasions.”

“Well, that tracks with why he was found strangled by vines,” Danny said. “Magic had to have been involved. At some point, I’d love further details, though. That wasn’t really a full explanation.”

“I can loan you my grandfather’s journals if you like and the official Society record,” Mariah said. “Your grandfather was not the only one expelled from the Society. We take our duties seriously and the supernatural can corrupt people quickly.”

“I’ll keep that in mind,” Danny said.

“Now recite our mission,” Mariah said with a wicked grin. “You may have thought I forgot about that but I never forget.”

“I’ll keep that in mind too,” Danny said, rolling his eyes. “We’re here in Nepal to look for a missing Yeti. It used to be observed and ‘managed’ by the S. E. A. near Everest but the Yeti was attacked. A Joe Rohde attacked the creature with a series of flashbangs which frightened it away from its lair. Madame Zarkov was able to locate the Yeti here further along the Himalayas and we are here to aid the Yeti in getting back to the Forbidden Mountain.”

“Nice summary,” Mariah said. “We will sleep here tonight. Arnold Lindsey will arrive tomorrow morning with the rest of our gear and a guide. Rest well, Reed. Tomorrow will be another long day.”

“You can call me Danny,” he said.

Mariah took a deep breath. “Danny then,” she said. “That doesn’t mean you can call me Mariah yet. You have to earn it.”

X-Cell – An X-Men What If Story

April 28, 2021

(This is a companion piece to my Avengers story two weeks ago. It can be found here. TL;DR this world is in a bad way.)

“So where we at, mon freres,” Gambit said, leaning against a wall. “Things are looking pretty grim, non?” They were taking refuge in an estate in the country north of New York City. Westchester County was just far enough out of the way to dodge the heavier patrols in the city but close enough that they could still take action if they needed to. Besides, the place belonged to a man a few of them had met once. Charles Xavier, a mutant just like them who had brought them together for a purpose. To counter the threat of Magneto and the US Government.

“You ain’t lyin’,” Rogue said. “We’re in a fine mess.”

“Agreed,” Colossus said. “The government’s forces are closing in. They keep capturing our people and brainwashing them against us. Magneto, Logan, my sister, and so many more. And now they have started to kill us.”

“Sam,” Rogue said, her voice wavering a bit. “I can’t believe he’s dead. He was the best of us.”

“At least you took his power before he went, chere,” Gambit said. “I know it’s not a lot of comfort.”

“I shouldn’t have done it,” Rogue said. “They weren’t mine to take.” Magneto had somehow hurled a piece of rebar right through Sam Guthrie. He was bleeding out when he called out for help, barely conscious. Rogue had been the first one to get to him and the last one to see him alive.

“I disagree,” Colossus said. “It was smart thinking. Sam would have wanted his powers to continue to be used for justice. The legacy of Cannonball lives on through you.” Sam had been young and experienced but his power level was huge.

“I’m so tired of carrying these legacies,” Rogue said. “I already had M’s and Banshee’s powers.” She could see their faces still when she closed her eyes. She had traces of their memories and knew their pain. It was a lot.

“Are you having difficulty holding in that much power?” Colossus asked as gently as he could. He cared for his teammates and wanted the best for them. He had never asked to be their leader but their options were fewer and fewer. Charles was in a mysterious coma in the basement after a confrontation with Magneto’s forces. Many of their former friends were imprisoned or brainwashed. He badly wanted to hand over the position of team leader to anybody who would take it.

“I’m having difficulty holding the grief in,” Rogue said. Gambit reached out for her but she waved him off. There was time enough for comfort later. “I’ll be fine, though. We have to be fine, don’t we?”

“We must,” Colossus said, nodding with a grim look on his face. “For now there is the three of us and Pyro. Madrox, Kurt, and Raven are still on their mission. I can only hope that Morph is still undercover somewhere but out of touch. Betsy and Jean are spending all of their energy shielding us from the government. The Avengers are missing.”

“They have to still be out there somewhere,” Rogue said. “Otherwise, they would have been plastered all over the news. They would be crowing about it.”

“Chere’s got a point,” Gambit said. “They are probably hiding just like we are. Except we can’t stay hidden forever.” They were all getting restless and hope was dwindling. Remy kept joking and flirting to keep the dread away but it only did so much.

“Agreed,” Colossus said. “We have to make a move and soon.”

“I’m ready for it,” Rogue said, her eyes suddenly fierce. “I’ve got all this power and I’m ready to rain down hell on them. You have to turn me loose.”

“Soon enough, Anna Marie,” Colossus said. “The first opening we get, we strike. We will win our friends and loved ones back to our side.”

Wilde and Hopps Detective Agency – A Zootopia Story

April 27, 2021

Nick followed Judy into the dusty old office. The building was on a little side street off of Savanna Central. It would have been a prime location if the building had not been so neglected. It must have been missed by the new Mayor’s beautification programs. Nick had made a face when he saw the building but Judy had not seemed to notice it. Nick had lived in and been to plenty of sketchy places but he thought that part of his life was over. And yet, here he was following Judy Hopps into another situation.

“Explain what this place is again?” Nick asked, gesturing around them. He ran a single furry finger along a desk and came away with a thick bit of dust. He wiped it off on his pants.

“This is my new office,” Judy said. “Our new office if you still want to join me.” She seemed to be in exceptionally high spirits but Judy Hopps was almost always vibrating with energy. At least, that’s how Nick had always known her. It was part of what had convinced him to go straight.

“I still can’t believe that you quit the police force,” Nick said. “Wasn’t that your dream from when you were a little kid?”

“It was my dream,” Judy said with a smile. “but things change. When I had that dream, I didn’t really know what it would mean for it to come true. Mayor Lionheart and then Mayor Bellwether proved that the system is broken and it can’t be fixed from the inside. I don’t regret working hard for that dream because it gave me the skills for my new dream. I want to really help people.”

“So that’s why we’re here?” Nick asked. “That’s why you need an office?”

“Yeah,” Judy said. “I want to be a private investigator. No case too big or small. I want to help people. That was my real dream.”

Nick laughed and shrugged. “I kind of wish you had this epiphany a lot earlier,” he said. “You know, before I went through the Academy too.”

“It wasn’t a mistake for me to join the Academy and the force,” Judy said. “but it was a mistake not to really talk to you before you did the same. I’m sorry.”

“Hey, it’s not that huge a deal,” Nick said. “It’s just really weird for us to be reversed from when we met. Me the police officer, you the civilian.”

“Yeah,” Judy said with a laugh. “It is a bit weird. At least I haven’t devolved into a life of crime.”

“Yeah yeah,” Nick said. “I guess I sort of deserve that. I’ve gone straight but don’t think for a minute that I haven’t lost my cred on the street.”

“Heaven forbid,” Judy said in mock indignation. “I would never suggest such a thing. Your street cred is what made you so effective on our first case together.”

“Our first and only case,” Nick said. “unless I quit the force, of course. That’s a big ask, Judy.” He leveled his gaze at her and watched her tense up and look embarassed.

“Right,” Judy said softly. “It is a big ask and it was wrong of me to pressure you. Besides, I can always use a man on the inside.”

“I’m just kidding, Judy,” Nick said with a laugh. “I’d quit in a heartbeat for you. I proved that I belonged. We both did. You proved that a bunny could do it and I proved that a fox could do it. I have nothing left to prove. Besides, what you have in mind sounds more fun.”

“I’m so glad you said that,” Judy said. “because we have to clean this place up.”

“Suddenly, this sounds like not as much fun,” Nick said, his shoulders slumping.

“A little hard work isn’t going to kill you, Nick,” Judy said.

“We’ll see,” Nick said.


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