Friday, December 19, 2014

The Wabbit in the streets of Rome

The team hurtled into Rome with Panico crammed behind the cab of the truck. Lapinette drove fast because she felt that way it would look like a Christmas float - and she swerved into Via dei Corridori with tyres screeching. In order to reassure Panico, they had wedged him in with rough bits of wood they found on the beach. Panico was hardly impressed with this safety arrangement and en route from Fregene, he reminded them at every signpost he saw. "Beware blind junction!" he had yelled. "Dangerous curve ahead!" Lapinette wound up her window and turned on the radio but REM blasted the cab with "End of the world as we know it". Lapinette wound the window down. "I prefer Panico," she muttered. "Police, police! We'll be arrested," shouted Panico. Lapinette stuck her head out. "They're only having coffee, Panico!" "I think it's just the Finance Police," offered the Wabbit. There was a noisy fumbling from the back of the cab. "I didn't keep my receipts," yelled Panico. "I'll be al fresco for years." For a while calm prevailed and all that could be heard was the hissing of wheels on wet cobbled streets. "Are we going to the Department?" asked Fitzy. "That's what the Agents of Rabit want," said the Wabbit. "I choose to disappoint them with a distraction." The truck rattled through dim neighbourhoods. "Commander Wabbit?" asked Tipsy. The Wabbit nodded. "I noticed Panico holding something in his fist." "This," grinned the Wabbit, "gets better and better."
[al fresco: in Italy this means "in prison," The closest approximation might be "in the chiller".

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Wabbit and Panico's Challenge

The team drew Panico to a quiet spot where the Wabbit aimed to sooth him, but he quickly changed his plan. "This structure is unstable!" yelled Panico. "It will collapse and bury me in the sand!" At that moment a piece of wood fell from a post and smashed at Panico's feet. The Wabbit looked at Tipsy and shrugged. So Tipsy hopped forward with an enormous smile and looked up. "I really really like you, Panico," she whispered. "Do you want to take me out for dinner?" Panico lurched backwards. "Aaaagh!" he yelled. "What will happen? It will be an awful disaster!" "Why?" asked Tipsy softly. "Food poisoning!" shouted Panico. Tipsy sighed and searched in her frock. She drew out the automatic she'd found in the Wabbit's Secret Boutique, held it up and waved it. "Help me try my new gun." "No, that looks very dangerous," screamed Panico. The Wabbit winked at Tipsy but somehow held Panico's gaze. "I'm going to try it," said Tipsy and she suddenly fired in the air. The bullet ricocheted a zig-zag path along the fence, narrowly missing Panico and Rabbit Jenny who had just arrived. Then it buried itself quietly in the sand with an apologetic plop. The Wabbit grinned broadly. "You see, Panico, we're all still here." Panico's pupils dilated and his hand trembled violently. "We're lucky we weren't killed" he said. "Oh, that was only chance," said the Wabbit. "Luck is what we have left over ... "

Monday, December 15, 2014

The Wabbit and Unexpected Trouble

The Wabbit's radio crackled and he found a quiet spot. "Receiving you, Skratch," "Break break, Pan pan," said Skratch's voice. "Roger. Priority traffic." said the Wabbit. He changed to analog short wave and switched on a reverse speech encrypter.  The radio hissed back into life. "Bandits have we," said Skratch. "Rabit of Agents by over taken Rome DWA reports Dragon the Terni." The Wabbit's head span and he switched off the encrypter with a sigh. "What did Terni see?" "Hundreds of Agents surround Rome Department of Wabbit Affairs," said Skratch. "The place is locked down. No-one gets in or out." The Wabbit thought for quite a while. "Hello?" crackled Skratch. "Wait two," said the Wabbit. Two minutes elapsed, then Skratch heard the Wabbit's voice issuing a series of instructions. "Terni will continue surveillance. Wabsworth, bring the rest of our Turin crew here on the double. Skratch. take the coast team and approach covertly. Do not engage." "What if they see us?" asked Skratch. The Wabbit stopped and thought. "Who? The Department?" "No, the Agents," said Skratch. The Wabbit's voice was terse. "Rome Department doesn't know we're on its patch. I didn't clear it." Skratch allowed himself a laugh. "Wabbit, I don't think they'll care." "Well, keep out the way anyway," sighed the Wabbit, "change your T-shirt and wear your mask back to front." "What about your end?" asked Skratch. "Did you find the creature?" "He found us," said the Wabbit.
[Break break and/or Pan pan: clear airwaves, priority transmission]

Friday, December 12, 2014

The Wabbit and Panico's Dread

Farther down the coast, the Wabbit, Lapinette and her special guard followed faint moaning sounds. "This could be him," said the Wabbit. He swung open the door of the truck and jumped out to peer into the distance. Lapinette's ears quivered. "He's coming this way." "I have visual," said Tipsy. The creature's moans whipped grains of sand into a storm. As his cries continued they grew louder and transformed into alarm then terror. The Wabbit and his team looked in amazement. "Storm coming," screamed the creature, "I'll be swept out to sea and drowned!" The Wabbit noticed lightning flashes as clouds scuttled crazily across the horizon and a strong wind ruffled his ears. The Wabbit had tuned in to the weather forecast, which clearly specified calm seas, clear skies and no precipitation. So he knew he'd found his target. He inclined slightly towards the creature and nodded as he drew closer. "You intend to eliminate me!" shouted the creature. The Wabbit shook his head but the creature's panic only grew. "Then we'll all be slaughtered." The Wabbit looked questioningly in what he felt was a reassuring manner, but the creature shrank back and his voice was ragged with fear. "They're out to get me!" "Who?" asked the Wabbit. "Now they'll come to get you too!" shrieked the creature. The Wabbit smiled. "After a while, you get used to it."

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The Wabbit's team at the Coast

Wabsworth, Skratch the Cat and Puma waited as instructed. "Why are we here?" growled Puma. He fretted impatiently and pawed sand. A flutter of wings announced the arrival of Terni the Food Dragon and they looked up as he wheeled watchfully over deserted beach huts. "The Wabbit said to wait and keep our eyes peeled!" hissed Skratch sharply. But his neck had cricked and he hunched awkwardly. Wabsworth found his automatic was getting heavy and scowled as he shoved it in his fur. "They're taking their time," he grumbled. "So what's in the beach hut?" chirped Puma. "Supplies?" shrugged Wabsworth. "Well I'm bored," purred Puma, "shall we have a look?" "Better not," said Skratch and he thought for a minute. "I know," he murmured. "We'll play a game. I spy with my little eye .." "Something beginning with B," suggested Wabsworth. "Beach hut!" roared Puma. They all became contemplative but Puma broke the silence. "Wabbit supplies in my mind's eye, so what's in the hut?" "Something beginning with A?" offered Wabsworth. "Astrolite G?" suggested Skratch, "the Wabbit did say something about it." "It's usually safe enough," said Puma. "Under what circumstances?" asked Skratch. "Correct storage," said Puma, "such as a beach hut," "Let's relax then," said Skratch with a miaow. "What sounds can you hear?" "I can hear the gentle waves," said Wabsworth. Skratch pricked up his ears. "I can hear a truck."

Monday, December 08, 2014

The Wabbit and the Secret Boutique

In the dead of night, the Wabbit, Lapinette and her personal guard slipped unseen into Rome. Following a robust breakfast, there was urgent shopping to do. Fitzy, Mitzy and Tipsy decided they wanted disguises - and after they appropriated overalls from a motor dealer in Via Gregorio VII they fashioned them most fashionably. But the Wabbit insisted they visit his Secret Boutique. This lay in the basement of a concrete canyon of a shopping centre and here, the Wabbit had an arrangement to store large quantities of useful equipment. This was completely unknown to the Department of Wabbit Affairs and quietly paid through his Dinosaur Fund. Tipsy had already discovered an automatic of unknown origin and much to the delight of the Wabbit, was trying it for size. "Whatever happens this year," said the Wabbit, "we won't go short on supplies." Lapinette looked shrewdly at the Wabbit. "Please tell me there's no Astrolite G stored here." The Wabbit shook his head. "I have some out on the coast. Do you want any?" Lapinette shook her head. "I'm not planning on leaving earth's orbit this week." Fitzy , Mitzy and Tipsy poked around in every corner. "Commander. Where is this jolly dangerous creature you spoke of?" asked Mitzy, "I'm ready for anything." "He's on the Eve of Destruction," giggled Tipsy. "That's why we're here," advised the Wabbit. "He always is."

Friday, December 05, 2014

The Wabbit and Fitzy, Mitzy and Tipsy

The Wabbit had to meet Lapinette's personal guard and he was a little nervous. Although he had chosen them for the job, Fitzy, Mitzy and Tipsy were loyal to Lapinette - so in terms of rank, things were fuzzy. He approached with caution and waved a paw in greeting. "Oh it's you," said Mitzy, "I suppose you're in charge." The Wabbit grinned. "I suppose I am." Fitzy waved. "I hope you've got something interesting for us!" "Interesting and risky," replied the Wabbit. "Commander Sschr," said Tipsy and she fired a single round from an automatic. The bullet ricocheted twice, darted between the Wabbit's ears and ended its journey by breaking a window. "Tipsy!" said the Wabbit. "You haven't changed a bit." Fitzy was impatient. "What about your Museum of Enemies?" The Wabbit nodded. "It successfully flushed out our arch enemies, the Agents of Rabit." "Golly Gosh," said Fitzy. "Now we'll make them hand in their lunch vouchers." "Ground them for good," said Mitzy. "Ushe 'em as target practice," said Tipsy. Both Fitzy and Mitzy hopped forward to forcibly prevent Tipsy from taking pot shots at anything interesting. "We're going to Rome," said the Wabbit. "Because a creature is causing trouble." "What kind of trouble?" snarled Fitzy. The Wabbit's mouth tightened. "It attracts destruction." Tipsy's laugh echoed round the building. "And now it attracted us."

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

The Wabbit and the Safe House

Lapinette felt the touch of the Wabbit's paw and suddenly the Dumpsters and the street were gone. "Where are we?" she breathed. "A Safe House," said the Wabbit. Lapinette looked round. She could hear vague kitchen noises and smelled food. "Was that all a dream?" The Wabbit shook his head. "Not at all. The whole thing is very real." "All these enemies?" asked Lapinette. "It was hard to arrange," said the Wabbit." "But hardly impossible it seems," smiled Lapinette. She curled a paw round the Wabbit's because she knew he was mid-project she and wanted to be supportive. "Can you level with me now?" The Wabbit nodded in a serious manner. "I needed the Agents of Rabit in the open and their attention where I wanted it." Lapinette's eyes narrowed and the Wabbit continued. "The Agents are planning something extremely big." "So the Museum of Enemies was a distraction?" asked Lapinette. Kitchen sounds became louder and they both felt very hungry. "The Museum will open in the New Year as planned," smiled the Wabbit gently. "In the interim, I'm moving the team out." Lapinette felt a sense of excitement. "What do we need?" The Wabbit squeezed Lapinette's paw. "Is your special guard available?" Now Lapinette's smile broke into a broad grin. "Fitzy and Mitzy are, but I don't know about Tipsy." The Wabbit felt things were proceeding well. "Tell them to take the truck." Lapinette asked the question but she already knew the answer. "Take it where?" "Rome," said the Wabbit.

Monday, December 01, 2014

The Wabbit and Dublin Dumpsters

The Wabbit instructed his enemy allies to fall back and then they waited. It wasn't long before they felt turbulence from above. With banshee wails, airborne dumpsters fell like rain and set about the Roman Dumpsters with vigour. Lapinette couldn't resist a wave and she turned to the Wabbit. "Why are there two colours?" The Wabbit grinned. "The Dublin Dumpsters have two units. One will take care of unruly elements and the other will clean up all this trash afterwards." Wabsworth nodded agreeably. "Most effective. But what about them?" The Wabbit glanced up to the rooftops. Agents quickly ducked out of sight and the Wabbit scowled. "They're too early. They'll have to wait their turn." The team watched as one by one the Agents of Rabit left the rooftops. "Do you think they're going home?" asked Lapinette. The Wabbit nodded his head. "Maybe." "Perhaps they came to be in your Museum of Enemies," said Wabsworth. "I doubt that," said the Wabbit. "They'd like to put us in their Museum." Lapinette shuddered to think how that might be and her nose wrinkled. "Agents are most annoyingly persistent enemies." The Wabbit's smile was lopsided. "This whole affair is confusing them." Wabsworth was worrying about something. "What are we going to do with them?" "Nothing," said the Wabbit. "We won't disturb them if they're going home." "And if they stay?" asked Lapinette. The Wabbit's teeth sparkled. "Offer them interesting bait."

Friday, November 28, 2014

The Wabbit and the Deadly Deadlock

The pursuit took the Wabbit's team of enemy allies through the city - but without warning there was deadlock as they came face to face with a phalanx of Dumpsters. A mountain of trash blocked any manoeuvre and the Wabbit scowled and stamped his foot. "I should have expected the unexpected," he muttered. He watched his allies menacing the Dumpsters and it looked like stalemate. "When in doubt, call a pow-wow," suggested Lapinette. So he called a pow-wow to order. "Do you wish to approve the minutes of the last pow-wow?" asked Wabsworth. "Move next business," sighed the Wabbit. Lapinette was staring at reflections in Wabsworth glasses. "I'd like to start with Any Other Business." The Wabbit also squinted in Wabsworth's glasses. He could see shapes way up on the rooftops and he knew what they were. All of his 28 teeth flashed grimly and his voice was steel. "The business of uninvited guests?" He fished in his fur for his walkie talkie and did something he didn't want to do. Talk to the Department. He spoke rapidly, issuing instructions. "Now patch me through!" he snapped. The pause was interminable. Finally a distant voice crackled back and the Wabbit spoke. "I'm calling in a favour." Lapinette and Wabsworth leaned close. "Never a bother," said the voice, "that's grand." The Wabbit shut off the radio, looked round at his allies and waved for them to continue. Lapinette's smile was a question. "Dublin?"

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The Wabbit's March of the Enemies

The Wabbit and his enemy allies marched through the outskirts of Turin. Lapinette and Wabsworth looked right and left, while MacDrabs pried in every corner. Beady-eyed Euls were everywhere, looking in places no-one had ever considered. The Ice Mice appointed themselves guards and took up the flanks. But Gnamskulls held centre stage - ready to pounce into any Dumpster they found. "Come on!" shouted the Wabbit and he waved a paw forward. But he muttered softly to Lapinette. "I don't see any Roman Dumpsters now." Lapinette merely blinked. "Perhaps they know we're coming." The Wabbit thought for a moment. "They're tough but they're not swift." "Then how did they get here at all?" asked Wabsworth. It was Lapinette's turn to think. "Wabbit. Did you make any environmental arrangements for your Museum of Enemies?" "Of course," said the Wabbit. "I got a very reasonable company indeed." "Located where?" asked Lapinette. "Em, Rome," confessed the Wabbit. Lapinette raised an eye. "The Cerotto Recycling Company in Malagrotta," sighed the Wabbit. Wabsworth shook his head sadly. "The Malagrotta operation was reconfigured last year." Lapinette scowled. "Wabbit, it was in Il Sole 24 ore!" The Wabbit cringed - but a sudden cry from an Ice Mouse scout let him off the hook. "Dumpsters located near Corso Svizzera." "That's close enough," said the Wabbit, clenching a paw. "Move out!"
[cerotto. Italian: band-aid, sticking plaster]

Monday, November 24, 2014

The Wabbit at the Edge of Town

It was an isolated spot and a light breeze ruffled the Wabbit's fur. "I brought them," said Marshall Duetta Spyder, "just as you requested." The Wabbit looked critically at the assembled enemies. "Why did you come here?" he yelled. "To be in your museum," said a Yellow Gnamskull. The Wabbit smiled secretly to himself and glanced back at Duetta. "What is the agreed union per diem for enemy appearances?" "€125.50 plus duly authenticated expenses," answered Duetta. "Let's round that up," said the Wabbit. "€126." The Wabbit's enemies hadn't expected to be paid so they all stared at Wabsworth until he made an official note. Two MacDrabs were so delighted they ran to each other and hugged and danced. "Attention please!" called the Wabbit. "Unofficial enemies are threatening our mutual hostility." "Get them!" shouted some enemies at the back. "What are their names?" shouted another. "They're called Dumpsters," said the Wabbit. "They are both formidable and messy." "What is their weak point?" buzzed the Wasps. "Indiscriminate appetite," replied Lapinette. The Wasps snickered. Then they pushed their heads together in a planning buzz and sang. "We're gonna chase these crazy Dumpsters out of town." "Gnamskulls," called the Wabbit. "You are in the best position to raid the Dumpsters." The Gnamskulls preeened. "So you're going Dumpster Diving," shouted the Wabbit. "Accursed be their lids," yelled the Gnamskulls. "You're on bonus," said Wabsworth.

Friday, November 21, 2014

The Wabbit and the Tricky Snack

The Wabbit shouted "Run!" so they ran as fast they could with an angry Dumpster at their tails. The Wabbit dodged through courtyards and back streets and Lapinette and Wabsworth followed him without question. But the Dumpster stuck to them like melted toffee. "Where are you going?" yelled Lapinette. The Wabbit panted a few times. "Somewhere it won't follow." Wabsworth was slightly quicker than everyone else and he had time to glance around. "There's a tram stop round the corner." "What route?" asked the Wabbit. "Number 3," shouted Wabsworth. But the Wabbit was headed somewhere specific and he made a sign to Wabsworth. Up ahead they could see an abandoned burned-out truck and the Wabbit was making directly for it. The Dumpster was so enraged he could only make ghastly gulping noises. But his teeth snapped close to the Wabbit's fur. This annoyed the Wabbit and he shouted. "You're nothing but a superannuated sausage!" The Dumpster slowed and the Wabbit turned. "What do you think of my truck?" Now the Dumpster stopped dead and gazed at the wreck. "This?" he sneered. "I'm fond of my Bonnie," said the Wabbit. "I'm having her fixed up." The Dumpster leaned over and ate some fused electrics. "Not any more," he said. "Kiss goodbye to your vehicle." As the Dumpster snacked, the team crept away. Soon a tram was carrying them to the very edge of the city ...

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The Wabbit and the Reverse Recyclers

Having evaded the Roman Dumpsters, the team made their way to a caffè. But there were more Dumpsters - they seemed to be on every corner. "Any ideas, Wabsworth?" asked the Wabbit. Wabsworth scowled. "They don't seem very interested in us. They just dump trash." The Wabbit glanced around and studied them. "They're full of unsorted garbage." Lapinette thought long and hard and her eyes looked puzzled. The Wabbit squinted and Lapinette sighed. "Rome is strict about recycling. You can get a fine." "A fine for not recycling?" asked the Wabbit. Lapinette shook her head. "For putting the wrong trash in the wrong bin." "Then let's hop on over and fine the Dumpsters," laughed the Wabbit. Wabsworth looked offended by the whole thing. "I think €100 is an appropriate sum for each item." For a moment the Wabbit saw his Museum of Enemies budget take a boost. "Two hundred is better." As the Wabbit scrutinised the Dumpsters, one of them appeared to look over so he chanced calling out. "Fined a total of €800!" Suddenly there was ghastly noise, a deafening combination of grinding and chattering. Small chunks of garbage flew around and landed on the sidewalk. "Who are you?" cried the largest Dumpster. "I'm the Wabbit," said the Wabbit. The Dumpster sneered. "Give us your rubbish!" "I haven't got any," shrugged the Wabbit. A howl of delight rose from the Dumpsters. "Then we'll take you instead ..."

Monday, November 17, 2014

The Wabbit and the Dumpster Drama

The Wabbit and Lapinette headed away from the rail yard, but there on the crossing was Wabsworth. He looked somewhat sombre so the Wabbit hailed him cheerily. "Hello Wabsworth, did you spot any Dumpster Devils with teeth?" Wabsworth stared unflinchingly at the Wabbit and nowhere else. "Yes," he said. The Wabbit waited. One of Wabsworth eyes moved imperceptibly - somewhere between a blink and a wink. "Please do exactly as I say, Commander." "Is this a game, Wabsworth?" said the Wabbit. Wabsworth nodded slightly. "I am going to hop back to the sidewalk. Follow me in a nonchalant fashion." The Wabbit looked confused. "Then what?" "We will hop round the corner at reasonable speed." "What speed exactly?" said the Wabbit. Wabsworth's eyes flickered towards Lapinette. "As if we all have somewhere definite to go." "Like as if we were going for aperitivi?" suggested Lapinette. "Exactly," murmured Wabsworth. Lapinette stood gently on one of the Wabbit's feet but the Wabbit still looked confused. "So are we going for aperitivi or not?" he smiled. "Just round the corner," smiled Wabsworth urgently, "But we must make haste." "Is the caffè going to close?" asked the Wabbit. Lapinette gazed into Wabsworth's glasses and suddenly saw a reflection of the scene behind her. She dug the Wabbit in the ribs and dragged him forcibly and under protest by the fur. "Aperitivi this minute, that's an order!"