Thursday, January 17, 2019

2. The Wabbit and the Inside Out

The Wabbit threw open the shutters and closed them behind him. An eerie light filtered through from the next street, painting the rubbish that littered the floor a fluorescent orange. At the far corner stood an old chair and a little further away, a coffee table with a reserved sign. The Wabbit pulled his automatic from his fur. "That looks like blood." His voice was the merest murmur, yet it echoed like a trumpet under a bridge. The Wabbit advanced with caution and touched the red stains. "Paint," he whispered. He thought for a moment. "Maybe someone painted themselves into a corner." He turned to the table and lifted the sign. "Reserved for whom?" He ticked it in his fur and sifted through the rubbish, but found little of interest except for a few receipts made out to 'A Customer' and listing various vague services. "This is a riddle," thought the Wabbit. It was then that he noticed the small pyramid on the chair. It looked like a Wablantis pyramid and he made to pick it up. But a little voice told him not to. He slid the automatic back in his fur and took out a camera. "I'll bring in the team and we'll scour this place with a fine tooth comb." His camera flashed. Then he tried to slide the shutter back up, but it was jammed. The voice he'd heard before spoke again. "They won't find anything. This place doesn't really exist." The shutters slammed open and a hidden force propelled the Wabbit outside. The shutters slammed shut. The Wabbit hopped back. His camera flashed again and he growled, "We'll see about that."

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

1. The Wabbit and the Back Street Market

The Wabbit was assured by a trusted source that the store would be open. So he was extremely annoyed. He'd made a special effort to haul himself out an early hour and here he was, looking at closed shutters. All the same, it was somewhere he'd never been before and so he glanced around. At first glance it looked seedy. A number of likely sorts idled around. The Wabbit thought of them as 'Herberts' and he frowned. Some greeted each other and shook hands. Others whistled aimlessly and followed others. He watched as they came and went. He detoured round the stalls in the main market, ignoring the cries of dusty dealers. Everyone was their friend apparently. Each passer-by was greeted in the same manner. "How are you? How are you?" The Wabbit hopped back to the shuttered store. "Are you a rabbit? Do you speak rabbit?" asked a trader." The Wabbit shook his head and moved on. It wasn't the kind of market the Wabbit was used to. He was fond of a search for an unobtainable jazz album, but everything he saw was boringly boring. He briefly took an interest in a stall selling football wear, but every single item sported the colours of a team he quite disliked. Then he heard a whisper. He looked around but there was no-one there. The voice whispered again. "Are you looking?" The Wabbit banged on the shutters and shouted. "I'm looking for an unobtainable item." "Maybe I can help you," said the voice ...

Friday, January 11, 2019

The Wabbit at his Adventure Caffè

Wabsworth tapped the Wabbit on the shoulder and said "Will you ask the question?" "All right," smiled the Wabbit, "What was that for a sort of adventure we just had?" Eataly was quiet and his voice rang out. "Drink!" yelled Tipsy. She scaled the giant wine bottle then tapped it - but it sounded hollow. "Political pastiche," murmured Skratch. “It took place in a socio-semiotic framework, yet it remained undelineated." Lapinette leaned back and nodded her head. "But in terms of intertextuality, it provided an oscillation of meanings accessible to pragmatic appropriation." "Drink!" shouted Tipsy. Lapinette twitched an ear. A waiter appeared, took an order and vanished. Skratch's eyes bulged and he spluttered, "In narratological stereotypes, autonomous constructs are usually foregrounded." Lapinette held up a paw. "Only for naive readers." It was Wabsworth's turn to speak. (Being an android, he had read everything there was to read.) "The adventure was political but utilised comical sharpening, which produced negative but likeable stereotypes." "The wine is coming," yelled Tipsy. "I rest my case," smiled Wabsworth. "Wabsy, I heard that," murmured Tipsy. "Skratch creased up with laughter. "Now you have to take Tipsy to the movies." Tipsy grinned. "I like political horror." Lapinette kept a straight face. "Like They live." Tipsy slid down the giant wine bottle. "They won't if they don't bring my drink."

Tuesday, January 08, 2019

19. The Wabbit and the 5 Star Judgement

There were only five stars left but they were brought to justice anyway. "Have you anything to say in your defence?" asked the Wabbit. They mumbled incoherently. "Let's just boom them," said StrangeGlove, He waved his automatic. "Due process must be procedurised," shrugged the Wabbit.  "You start," said StrangeGlove. The Wabbit addressed the stars. "What is your occupation or business?" Silence fell. Outside, traffic shuffled down Via Nizza. "I'll mark down "layabouts", mein Fuhrer," said Strangeglove. "From whence do you come?" snapped the Wabbit. An incoherent mumble hung in the air. "I am writing down a no fixed abode kind of place," sighed StrangeGlove. The Wabbit groaned and  continued. "What language do you speak?" The stars revolved in a circle and made a chattering sound. "Gibberish?" enquired Strangeglove. The circle of stars revolved the other way then bounced into one another. What voices they had were shrill and angry. "You can't argue in here," said Strangeglove, "This is a court of law!" The Wabbit and Doctor StrangeGlove drew back and spoke to each other. "What do you suggest?" asked the Wabbit. "Microwave until they boom," said StrangeGlove. The Wabbit shook his head. "Explosive liquidisation?" suggested StrangeGlove. The Wabbit wasn't happy. StrangeGlove thought for a while. "I suggest ... gainful employment." His eyes glistened. The Wabbit smiled in agreement. "What about traffic lights?" StrangeGlove laughed and nodded. "Then they'll have to change."

Saturday, January 05, 2019

18. Puma, Terni and the Stars

Puma was waiting as only a puma could wait. Then with a mighty roar he leaped on the stars. His claws slashed, his jaws snapped and his teeth tore at the creatures. They didn't taste of much - a mite salty maybe. They were a certainly a long way short of meat. He landed on the sand, then clawed his way up a pole and leaped again. He beat them up, batted them down and ground them to dust. But there were many and they kept coming. The more he demolished the more there seemed to be - like a swarm of annoying insects. "I could use a helping paw," he screeched. That's when he heard the frantic flapping of cabbage wings. Terni the Food Dragon came swooping down from two o'clock high, toasting the creatures with a peppery dragon breath and swallowing them in giant batches. "Gnammy, yummedy gnam!" he roared. The starry warm tried to evade him by flocking up and down and circling in a sine wave formation. But they were a poor match for a food dragon with attitude. Puma picked up a fluttering star in his teeth, shook it around then let it go. He pounced again and ripped it to shreds. "Speak you little daemons," he roared, "Speak or we'll render you endangered." The remaining stars started to whine like dynamos. Puma swept them into a hole in the sand, sat on them and snarled, "You'll answer to the Wabbit!" Terni landed and tore a massive groove along the sand. His fiery breath ignited every piece of flotsam on the beach. "I can hardly wait."

Thursday, January 03, 2019

17. The Wabbit and the Stars of Doom

It was a bolt from the blue. The Wabbit watched the hatch swung open. Doctor StrangeGlove rapped on the hull and yelled, "Is there anyone hiding there in the dark?" Out lurched three stupefied Agents of Rabit, tiny stars revolving round their heads. One stumbled off in the sand and fell on his face. The others reeled around in a drunken fashion. "Incompetent fools," shouted StrangeGlove, "I will explode you like a boom." The Wabbit laughed grimly. "We'll keep the boom for later. Watch out for these stars." The stars whirled and merged then took off across the sand, like roosting starlings.
StrangeGlove and the Wabbit followed their path and watched them land along every structure on the beach. The noise was deafening. Then all became still. The Agents blinked. "Where are we?" "On the beach," said the Wabbit. The Agents looked unsteady, "I can't remember a thing," said one. They conferred for some time. "We are taking the vessel," interrupted StrangeGlove. "But how will we get home?" whimpered an Agent. The Wabbit waved his automatic. "Get the bus." The Agents hung their heads and headed to the road. "Augenblick, meine kleinen Freunde!" growled StrangeGlove. The Agents turned back. "What are these kleinen stars?" "They came out a packet of cornflakes," shrugged an Agent. "I was collecting them," said the second. "I have two yellows but I'm short of a red one," said the third. The Wabbit looked at StrangeGlove. "Do you like the stars?" StrangeGlove snapped a finger. "I prefer the dark."
["Augenblick, meine kleinen Freunde!":  Wait, my little friends!"  "Is there anyone hiding there in the dark?" : Return of the Pink Panther]

Sunday, December 30, 2018

16. Skratch and the Tearaway Weapon.

Skratch wasn't surprised by the pod. He watched it roll to the beach hut and settle and he smiled. All was going according to plan. He meowed in feline satisfaction and brushed his paw along his fur. That was when he heard the sound of engines. It started like a chatter but grew into a whine. He felt a push of air, but all he could see was a blur. The object churned a path through the sand, flinging anything its path to the side. Flotsam and jetsam crashed along the beach. An old tyre pirouetted in the air. Skratch flinched as stones flew by his head. "Good grief," he muttered as he dodged out the way. The football was as big as he was. His nostrils filled with the acrid smell of burning oil and something else he couldn't identify. He watched the ball go. It bounced towards the pod and stopped. For a minute nothing happened. Then it started to sing. Skratch listened carefully. It was some kind of football song, full of offensive yet flouncy threats. He shrugged and made his way towards the pod. The big football broadcast a repetitive message that cast scorn on the place the pod's occupants came from. Skratch heard it continue with a variety of comments on the dubious parentage of the occupants. The messages then went on to forecast the likely appearance of any of the occupants' offspring, a diatribe so contemptuous that Skratch covered his ears and meowed to himself, "Sometimes the Wabbit goes too far." The pod's hatch opened ...

Thursday, December 27, 2018

15. Wabsworth and Susan's Beach Party

Events were as unexpected as they were sudden. Susan the Biplane swooped and hooked the pod. The Lepus steamed in with klaxons shrieking. Panico's eyes bulged in delight. Tipsy cheered and threw her paws in the air. Shrieky voices issued from inside the pod as it shuttled dripping along the beach. "Failsafe, Failsafe!" Something shimmered from a hatch, but quickly vanished. "Gotcha!" yelled Wabsworth. "Where to?" asked Susan. The pod bumped along the beach and left a jagged groove in the sand. The occupants howled. Wabsworth scanned the horizon. "Dump it along by the beach huts, we'll wait for the team to tease out the occupants." Tipsy and Panico were already running. "Holy Cannelloni!" shouted Tipsy. "Peskiest peril," yelled Panico. Wabsworth saw landing crafts leaving the Lepus and spoke into the blower. "Head for the beach hut!" Jenny's voice crackled. "Aye aye Commander. We'll crack that ball like a joke." Wabsworth touched the joystick and spoke to Susan. "Ever played curling?" Susan waggled her wings. Wabsworth released the hook and chain and the pod slid along the beach until it gently nudged a hut. It rocked slightly, rolled then rocked back. Inside the pod, something retched. "Yuk," said a voice. "Clear that up," said another. Tipsy stood with her paws on her hips and started to laugh. "They got a pizza tango!" Panico swayed and snickered behind his fist. Diesel engines chuntered in the distance so Tipsy sat down. She plucked a hip flask from her frock, swigged the entire contents down and sang, "What a swell party this is!"

Monday, December 24, 2018

14. The Wabbit and the Doomsday Ball

In a long forgotten electric plant, somewhere on the Tiber, the Wabbit demonstrated his counter-doomsday weapon. Doctor StrangeGlove fondled his borrowed automatic and grinned a sinister grin. "Does it work?" The Wabbit tucked his own automatic in his fur. "Try it." StrangeGlove fired at the football. The football swerved to dodge the bullet - then ate it. StrangeGlove tried again. The bullet stopped dead, hung in the air and shot straight back. StrangeGlove caught the bullet in his teeth. "How menshee shav we got?" he mumbled. "We're in production now," replied the Wabbit. The ball  bounced up and down, making hard taps on the concrete floor. "That's annoying," said StrangeGlove. He spat the bullet at the ball. The ball revolved, hovered, and then sprayed a series of bullets that left a message on the floor. StrangeGlove squinted down, read it and turned to the Wabbit. "Mine Führer. Our domination is certain." "If we have the balls," grinned the Wabbit. StrangeGlove twirled the automatic. "Where is the Doomsday Pod now?" "In the water," said the Wabbit. "Deep?" asked StrangeGlove. "It just squirted out," shrugged the Wabbit. "Did they start the countdown?" asked StrangeGlove. "It appears they bent the key," said the Wabbit. StrangeGlove spat and fired at the ceiling. "Incompetent swines!" The Wabbit grinned. "Maybe they used the wrong keyhole..!"

Friday, December 21, 2018

13. Panico and the Unexpected Arrival

Panico looked at the pod and bit his fist. His first instinct was to scream in fright but he decided to yell instead. "Get off my beach you monster." The pod merely bobbed up and down in the water. He nudged it. It rolled. He thought he heard something move inside, so he moved back ... and bumped into Tipsy. Tipsy thrust a crackling radio under his fist. "Message for you from the Commander!" The walkie talkie beeped then whined with a distorted version of the Wabbit's voice. "Panico. Look out for the Doomsday Pod. It looks like a ..." The message terminated with a squeak. "Like a football," said Panico. He circled round Tipsy, then ran back and kicked the pod. The radio whined again. "Don't kick it," crackled the Wabbit. Tipsy sighed and crouched on the beach with her paws over her head. Two hatches slid open. The sound of angry voices drifted from the pod and bounced across the waves. "Where's your key?" said a voice. "It fell into the water," said another. "Go and get it," said the first voice. "There's scary monsters," said the second. The voices yelled together. "We're doomed!" Another angry voice boomed out "It is we who do the dooming round here!" Panico leaned close to a hatch and listened to a frantic scrabbling. Finally there was another voice. "I found it." Panico heard a metallic scraping. "It's bent," moaned the voice. There was a loud slap and a cry of pain. Panico leaned close to a hatch. "Need a hand?"

Monday, December 10, 2018

The Three Muses at the Superga Array

The Three Muses materialised on the hillside and began to sing. "We are the three!" shouted Tipsy. Fitzy and Mitzy swayed together and their arms chugged like steam driven pistons. "How may they tell us apart?" sang Tipsy. "They may not," yelled Tipsy. "Because we dress the same," said Fitzy. "Because we talk the same," said Mitzy. "Because we are the same," said Tipsy. "Always," shouted Fitzy. "Usually," shouted Mitzy. "Invariably," drawled Tipsy. They stopped and changed positions. "Whither goes the story?" asked Tipsy. "Whether goes the plot?" yelled Fitzy. "The Wabbit chases phantoms," grinned Mitzy. "The Wabbit's in a knot," sang Tipsy. The entity whistled in the wind and the Three Muses swayed to the tune. "The Wabbit's pursuit is hard to bear," said Mitzy, "but he likes to cling to the edge of air." "He cannot hop aside," nodded Fitzy gravely. "And neither can we." answered Tipsy. Fitzy gazed up. The shimmering sky was a blue silk purse and it looked about to speak. "So let's not annoy the deities," she warned." We might disrupt their gaiety." They hopped in synchrony to the right then the left - and then to the right again. Trapped stars shimmered on the masts. Trees moved uneasily. Branches crackled. Twigs snapped. "If we won't tell them," breathed Tipsy, "they won't know." Tipsy smiled, lifted a paw and snapped. A breeze sprang up that tore at their dresses and their ears. Then all at once they disappeared.

Friday, December 07, 2018

12. Wabsworth, Terni and The Flickering

Wabsworth scouted the city with Susan the Biplane. The strange luminescence was quite horrid and even though he was an android, it hurt his eyes. They searched the city in parallel sweeps. "What exactly are we looking for," asked Susan. "Anything odd," responded Wabsworth. His ears picked up the flapping of cabbage wings. "Does Terni the Dragon count as odd?" asked Susan. "Not on this occasion," smiled Wabsworth. He watched Terni threshing and swooping. Circuits whirred as he registered suspicious flickers of light. "Susan, Terni has company. Identify them." Susan shielded Terni. "My instruments read a single entity." Lights whirled around Terni's head, then Susan's propeller - flashing like pinball bumpers. "I can't shake it off," shouted Terni. Wabsworth jolted as a light touched his paw. Susan juddered as another stuck to her fuselage. "Yow. Get off!" Terni and Susan clung close and picked up speed. The lights followed. Susan spun and dipped. Terni matched her movements. They looped the loop and plunged and soared - but the lights were still there. Wabsworth grabbed the joystick. "Drunken Rabbit Manoeuvre, Susan." Susan's engine moaned as she dropped like a stone. Then she lurched across the rooftops and blitzed straight at the TV transmitter array at Superga Hill. "Close as you can go, Susan." With angled wings, Susan and Terni tore along the hillside. One by one the lights peeled away and stuck like flies to pylons and satellite dishes. "That'll teach it!" roared Terni.

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

11. Jenny and the Moonlit Landing

The landing was sudden, had anyone been looking. The Lepus plunged down onto a moonlit coast with hardly a ripple and she shimmered brightly like a flag in the wind. She was en route from the Sombrero Galaxy with a cargo of confiscated contraband of huge strategic value - to be delivered to the Wabbit. "Personally in person," the Wabbit had instructed. Jenny strode the bridge. "Steady as she goes," she  murmured. Her binoculars swept the horizon. "OK. Now test the Stealthicator." The Lepus vanished momentarily, reappeared and vanished again. Jenny swayed on her pirate boots and laughed. "Aha. We be here and not here." Jenny spun the wheel and the Lepus hugged the coast. The ship was invisible due to a chameleon technology that painted an object's background onto its front. So no-one on the coast ever saw the Lepus. They could only hear the ghostly thrum of diesel engines and the phantom threshing of water. Occasionally a pirate order would ring out and float across the calm sea. Now and then a bell chimed. Jenny sounded the foghorn from time to time - long menacing moans that curled round and round. On the beach, a pack of wild dogs howled and barked out to sea. Jenny smiled, consulted her chronometer and spoke into the telegraph. "Half ahead, Chief." The Lepus leaped forward but a wind sprang up and battered the coast. Vessels broke their moorings. The Lepus rolled, pitched and yawed. ""Full ahead," shrugged Jenny. "She'll no take it, Captain," groaned Chief. "Full," said Jenny, "I'll be late for the Wabbit."

Monday, December 03, 2018

10. The Wabbit and the Doomsday News

The Wabbit and Lapinette tore across the city with Doctor StrangeGlove enjoying the ride. "Shall I take a salute?" he asked. His fingers twitched and he tried to stand up, but Lapinette pulled him back. "Looks like it's Christmas," said the Wabbit. He crashed through several gears at once and narrowly avoided a tram. "Something always comes up at Christmas," said Lapinette. She held on tight as the Wabbit mounted the sidewalk, then careered down the wrong side of the road. "It's a short cut," murmured the Wabbit. Then he braked. "Right on time." Lapinette pointed. It's Parakalo!" The Wabbit pulled to a halt as a white dove swooped down and settled on the hood of the jeep. "I bring news," cooed Parakalo, "A strange being is roving across the land." "Where does it do its roving, Parakalo?" asked Lapinette. Parakalo cooed long and loud. "It travels by night and it's hard to spot - but wherever it goes, there's cosmic turbulence." The Wabbit was well aware of Terni the Dragon's fondness for surfing space - and he sighed, "We must have picked up a visitor." StrangeGlove's fingers snapped into the air. "It comes from the outer eddies, ja?" The Wabbit nodded. "It has potential," said StrangeGlove, "so we will harness its precious capacity." Lapinette knew what was coming but asked anyway. "What potential?" "Doomsday potential!" shouted StrangeGlove.

Saturday, December 01, 2018

9. Tipsy and the Art of the Header

The Wabbit prised Doctor StrangeGlove from his bunker and, in empty facility near Lingotto, he set Tipsy to work. Tipsy dribbled the football the length of the building and back. She passed it to StrangeGlove but he still had no idea of what to do. Tipsy's only option was attack, so she fired the ball straight at him. StrangeGlove fell over but somehow the ball hit his head and stuck there for a while. He balanced it on the tip of his nose, then headed it back to Tipsy. "Attaboy Glovesy!" yelled Tipsy. She wheeled around and shouted to the Wabbit. "That counts as points for the Glove." The Wabbit held up a paw from the sidelines and shouted, "Play on! It's a game of two halves!" Tipsy juggled the ball on a foot, flipped it up and headed it to StrangeGlove - who copied her. Tipsy stole the ball and ran off with it. StrangeGlove followed her and stole it back, laughing until all his fingers stood in the air. They battled all day until the Wabbit held up a red card. "What did we do wrong?" asked Tipsy. "Nothing," answered the Wabbit, "I'm tired. We need refreshments." "What about an ickle alcohol rub?" laughed Tipsy. "What about a large one?" said the Wabbit.