Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Wabbit and the Hallowe'en Wand

Lapinette and the Wabbit had been for a hop on the beach. They were idly chatting when Lapinette suddenly produced a magic wand from behind her back and waved it around. “Look what I found," she chanted. "It has a little button and when you press it, the wand makes a zingy note." The Wabbit look nonplussed. "Don’t press the button," he advised. "You always press buttons," said Lapinette. "I have a feeling in my fur," replied the Wabbit, "don’t you remember what day this is?" "It’s Hallowe’en," chortled Lapinette, "when all manner of strange creatures are abroad." "Apart from us?" quipped the Wabbit. But Lapinette waved the wand again and just as the Wabbit reached out to grab it, she pressed the button. "You see, nothing happens," said Lapinette. "Behind you," groaned the Wabbit. Lapinette grinned. "I'm not falling for that one, that’s the oldest trick in the book." "Humour me," said the Wabbit. "No, no, no!" cried Lapinette and she tapped the Wabbit on the head. Stars flew from the wand and it made a most lyrical sound. “Oooh," said Lapinette, "that sounded Egyptian." "I dare say," said the Wabbit and he stared at a point behind Lapinette’s head. "Waaabbit!" boomed a voice that echoed from the rocks. "You are invited to an audience with Unut, Rabbit Goddess!" "Cute trick Wabbit! said Lapinette, "you can throw your voice so well." "The Dark Basement of the Goddesses, tomorrow morning!" boomed the voice. "Oh, you’re always joking," said Lapinette. "My diary needs adjusting," sighed the Wabbit. 

Friday, October 26, 2012

The Wabbit and the Trope Trick

As the friends waited on drinks to arrive, Skratch stood up and patted the Wabbit. "May I say," he boomed, "what at an excellent adventure that was." "You may," said the Wabbit, winking at Lapinette, "but you also have to tell us what kind of adventure you think it was." Seeing his cue to make a speech, Skratch didn’t hesitate. "It was a noir of course!" The Wabbit cocked his ears and his eyes twinkled. "It started in the rain, then a spider woman appeared with a plan and there were shadows," said Skratch with enthusiasm. "Is that how you tell?" smiled the Wabbit, nudging Lapinette under the table. "Yes," said Skratch, "these are familiar tropes, exquisitely handled." "Oh Skratch, you silly sausage," said Lapinette. "What on earth is a trope?" The Wabbit leaned forward. "Skratch is referring to figures of speech expected by the audience, metaphors if you will." Now it was Lapinette’s turn to lean forward. "You mean the adventure all meant something else?" "Nearly," said Skratch. "Because of his desire for adventure, the Wabbit allowed himself to be drawn into something outside his control." The Wabbit nodded gravely as Skratch continued. "We know that Duetta’s shadows were reflections, denoting her possible duplicity." "Do go on," said Lapinette, and pretending to make notes, she kicked the Wabbit’s foot a little too hard. "Ouch" said the Wabbit. "There you are!" said Skratch, "that was a Wabbit trope."  The Wabbit slapped a paw to his head. "If I give him enough trope he’ll hang himself!" "That was a meme," said Lapinette.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Wabbit & the Prisoners' Protocol

As the last of the surviving wasps were loaded into Quantum the Time Travelling Train, the Wabbit returned his badge of alliance to Duetta Spyder. "Marshall Spyder, since the battle is over and done, our alliance is now terminated," he stated tersely. "You are transporting them to the Sombrero Galaxy?" said Duetta. The Wabbit nodded. Duetta looked at the creatures. "I was rather hoping for a tasty wasp meal," she said, making gnashing noises with her teeth. The Wabbit grimaced. "We may one day be judged on the way we treat our prisoners," he said.  "But exile," said Duetta "is something of a waste." "It’s in the interest of biodiversity," quipped the Wabbit. "Not mine," said Duetta, rattling her legs. "Look, eating prisoners is just not the way we do things round here," snapped the Wabbit. Duetta looked at the Wabbit and softened and her voice became smooth and alluringly feminine. "All the same, I think I owe you something of a favour," she whispered in the silkiest of tones. The Wabbit did not respond because he felt an icy chill crawl across his fur. But as Duetta turned to go, he raised a paw in formal salute. "Goodbye, Marshall Spyder."  Swiftly, Duetta wheeled back and transfixed the Wabbit with eyes of steel. "Permission to speak frankly, Commander?" she asked. The Wabbit spread his paws wide. "Always," he said, automatically. "The trouble with you, Commander Wabbit - is that you think you’re God." The Wabbit shrugged and smiled the broadest of smiles. "I always aim for the best," said the Wabbit.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

The Wabbit and the Battle for the Sky

The squadrons of wasps were upon them in an instant and the sound was deafening. Then, from what seemed like nowhere, another balloon rose from the ground and connected with the fractal webs. The Wabbit gaped and shook his head, because hanging from the basket was none other than Skratch the Cat. Grabbing two web pieces, Skratch held them together to better trap the legions of insects and as the wasps smashed into the web, they became hopelessly entangled. But there were more and more and more. They kept coming in enormous numbers and in the mêlée, some found their way around the mesh. The Wabbit pulled an automatic from his fur and started to fire. Lapinette produced another and released a rapid volley of shots that saw several creatures plunge to their doom on the rooftops below. "Where on earth did you hide that gun?" growled the Wabbit as he sent one more wasp spiralling to the ground. "In my garments," she said and whacked a wasp that came too close. "How many are there?" yelled the Wabbit. "It has to be finite," said Lapinette and she calmly shot two wasps with just one round. "How do you do that?" asked the Wabbit. "Oh, stop asking questions and keep shooting," shouted Lapinette. "When this is finished, I'll buy the aperitivi," said the Wabbit. "Yes you will, because this alliance was your idea," replied Lapinette. She picked up a weight and leaning over the side, casually dropped it on the last trio of wasps. "I'll bet that gave them a buzz," said the Wabbit.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

The Wabbit over Turin

"Are you sure this thing's safe?" yelled the Wabbit and his 28 teeth chattered in the wind. "I was assured it was," shouted Lapinette. "By who?" screamed the Wabbit. "Skratch!" shouted Lapinette. The Wabbit flicked his eyes upwards to the hot air balloon and then out over the rooftops. "Oooh." he said as a geometric black shape appeared and hairy tendrils snaked out to connect with the balloon and several points on the city. "The last of the Red Spiders!" roared Lapinette and she gazed entranced as Duetta span a series of fractal webs across the skyline. It wasn't a moment too soon. The Wabbit pointed to a swarm of ferocious wasp-like insects flying rapidly in from behind the Turin Hills. Even from far away he could see their vicious stinging tails and he gave an involuntary shudder. The formation dived sharply but just as they seemed to be upon the allies, Duetta tightened her ties. The web changed shape and somehow became a living thing with a mind. It reached out to trap the wasps and the insects threshed as they became hopelessly enmeshed. They tried to struggle of course, but it was all for nothing. Gradually their threshing died away and they lay inert in the sinewy tendrils of the fractal web. "That was quick," said the Wabbit, "we can go down now." Lapinette shook her head and pointed. "Look over there!" she cried and the Wabbit looked to the right. There, flying over the Alps were three large formations of wasps, all of them much larger than the ones they had trapped so easily. "We need reinforcements," muttered the Wabbit.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Wabbit and the great Leap

The three raced across the city at high speed, the Wabbit and Lapinette loping quickly to keep up with the rapid scuttle of Duetta - who made straight for the highest place in the city, the Mole Antonelliana. The Wabbit looked on as Duetta positioned herself on the side of a nearby building and then made the most surprising leap the Wabbit had ever seen. "Good grief!" said the Wabbit. It had been some time since the Wabbit had made his own surprising leap, which was from the the tip of this very building and it was out rather than up. "No helichopper required this time," muttered the Wabbit, "just look at her go." "Come on Wabbit, we need to fulfil our part of the mission," said Lapinette. "Where did you find our transport?" asked the Wabbit. "I pulled in some favours," said Lapinette. The Wabbit smiled because he was usually the one to acquire things in an unorthodox fashion. "How many lunches?" queried the Wabbit. "I don't know what you mean!" replied Lapinette. "How many did it cost you?" repeated the Wabbit. They both paused to watch Duetta land on the top of the spire. "A Gala Dinner," said Lapinette finally. The Wabbit suppressed a snort. "Am I invited?" he asked. Lapinette thought for a while. "As long as you don't make bad jokes at the wrong time," she said. "I seldom joke at a Gala Dinner," stated the Wabbit. Lapinette narrowed her eyes in disbelief. "How so?" she asked. "Too busy eating," smiled the Wabbit.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

The Wabbit and the Blue Vial

Lapinette, the Wabbit and Duetta the Red Spider met in a hidden corner in a Palace in the centre of town. Looking over his shoulder, the Wabbit handed Duetta a small vial of blue liquid in a manner that can only be described as shifty." Duetta pounced on the vial immediately. "Did you mix it to my exact specifications, Commander?" she asked imperiously. The Wabbit nodded and then looked around cautiously. Lapinette scowled. "Did you wear gloves as I suggested?" she said. The Wabbit stared at Lapinette and his eyes narrowed, then suddenly flashed enormously wide. "I am the Rabbit God!" he cried. Duetta rattled her legs but Lapinette stamped a foot and shook a paw at the rabbit. "Of course," grinned the Wabbit, "I always keep keep sterile gloves in my fur."  Lapinette placed her paws on her hips and looked seriously at the Wabbit. "In case of forensic emergencies," he explained. Duetta ignored this badinage and grasping the vial, drank the contents in a single gulp. The Wabbit and Lapinette turned to watch Duetta, expecting something major to happen, but Duetta merely smiled. “Now we must hasten to a high place and prepare,"  she stated. But while Duetta sounded normal, her eyes started to revolve. And although they were whirling in spirals they easily captured Lapinette’s gaze. Lapinette looked into the spirals and couldn't take her eyes away. Her head begin to swim and she felt slightly dizzy. "What can you see?" she asked in a quivering tone. "Perfection," said Duetta.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Wabbit looks for the right Stuff

The Wabbit quietly approached Skratch to obtain the dietary supplement that Duetta the spider required for her task. "Pssst," said the Wabbit. Skratch looked amused and placed a paw on the Wabbit’s head. "What can I get you, Wabbit?" he asked, ruffling the Wabbit between the ears. "I need some stuff!" hissed the Wabbit. "What kind of stuff?" whispered Skratch. "A special kind of stuff," said the Wabbit and he leaned in to Skratch’s fur and explained the Spider's plan. "Oh dear," said Skratch. "You can’t get that stuff." "What!" shouted the Wabbit in exasperation. "Shhhh!" said Skratch. "I meant it can’t be obtained legally." "Grrr," said the Wabbit. "But I can steal it," said Skratch cheerfully. "You definitely can’t buy it?" breathed the Wabbit.  "Unfortunately it’s on a list," murmured Skratch and he hummed a Tampa Red blues song. "And no matter how you try, you can't buy, you can't get that stuff no more." "Could you steal it and leave some money?" suggested the Wabbit, "If you insist!" said Skratch. "How much do you need anyway?" "Not much apparently," said the Wabbit, "will it take long?" The Wabbit drummed a paw on the floor impatiently and made a grinding sound with his teeth. "Chill out Wabbit, it’ll be with you in no time." The Wabbit growled and rummaged in his fur for cash. "And this spider woman, she’s really going to eat that stuff?" mused Skratch. "Yes, and then she'll spin awe-inspiring, WASP-defying designs," said the Wabbit in an enchanted voice. "Wow!" said Skratch. "If she takes the stuff, that lady's going to be spun!"

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Wabbit and the Spider's Plan

"Marchesa Lapinette of the Department?" said the spider, "Marshall Duetta Spyder at your service!" "The Red Spiders seek an alliance against the WASP," explained the Wabbit. "The Red Spiders," said Lapinette gently, "didn’t you disband? " "We fight on," said Duetta, making a complicated wavy sign with a front leg. Lapinette nodded and brought consideration to the matter in paw. "What of the Glistening Web Tendency?" she said gravely. "Captured," said Duetta. "The Fund Raiser faction?" queried the Wabbit. "Its members decided to be bank robbers," said Duetta. "Eternal Combat?" suggested Lapinette. "Sold out to the enemy for a pittance," replied Duetta. "Never-ending Web?" asked the Wabbit. "Wiped out by a chewing gum disaster in 1987," said Duetta. "So how many of you remain?" said the Wabbit in a matter of fact voice. "A few," murmured Duetta. Now Lapinette spoke sharply. "How many?" Duetta lifted her head proudly. "Just me! But I can replicate rather quickly." "The WASP are many," stated Lapinette. "And tenacious," said the Wabbit. "I have a plan," said Duetta. "Do tell," said the Wabbit, quivering with excitement. "It involves spinning fractal webs," she said. The Wabbit’s eyes glistened with delight but Lapinette eyes narrowed. "Webs aren’t fractals," she said categorically. "Mine are," said Duetta, "depending on my diet." She passed a badge to Lapinette and rattled her legs as Lapinette pinned it to her fur. "Now what shall we call our alliance?" "The Spin Hopsters," smiled the Wabbit. 

Monday, October 08, 2012

The Wabbit and the Red Spiders

The Wabbit hopped inside an entrance to get out of the rain and ran straight into an enormous web.  And the more the Wabbit struggled the more trapped he became. He reached into his fur for a multi-purpose tool that he bought in a market (and never used) when a shadow passed. The Wabbit found himself looking at a giant spider and the spider was staring back at him. Then both shrank away in surprise. The spider was first to recover. "Name, rank and number," she commanded. "Wabbit, Commander, 007/392," said the Wabbit. "Of the 400 Rabbits?" asked the spider. She stiffened to attention and gave a wavy salute with one of her eight legs. "I’m afraid you have the advantage of me," said the Wabbit, who had found the tool he wanted and was now cutting his way free. "I am Marshall Duetta Spyder of the Ragni Rossi" said the spider, "what on earth are you doing in my web?" "Ragni Rossi ...," murmured the Wabbit, considering his mental catalogue of irregular forces. "That's the Red Spiders. Didn’t you disband?" "Certainly not," continued the spider. "We continue underground and in the very interstices of the city." "Against the forces of WASP?" remembered the Wabbit. "They remain the menace they always were," said Duetta, "and my web was meant for them, not a rabbit." "That’s Wabbit - with a W," said the Wabbit. "And I am Spyder with a Y," said Duetta and then she paused and thought.  "Perhaps we should consider an alliance?" "Alliances come and go," shrugged the Wabbit. "But we should seize the time," stressed Duetta. "Well, while we’re seizing it, could you help me down?" said the Wabbit. 

Friday, October 05, 2012

The Wabbit and the Upset Rain

The Wabbit hopped down the Via Paolo Sacchi with his paws deep in his fur and as he hopped he complained. "I hop a tiresome hop," he muttered and he attempted to hop a pattern across the Escher-like frames on the sidewalk under the porticos. The Wabbit hated the rain. It was no secret that when the rain started, the Wabbit would bolt for cover and it was the fundamental reason he liked the porticos. When the weather was wet and inhospitable, he could hop for as many as 18 kilometres without sullying his fur. In this way he could hop in a complete circle across the city without as much as a single wet hair. But this wasn’t one of these days. Every evening for what seemed like months, the rain had hurtled down like bullets and that evening it bounced horizontally from the road, ricocheted into the porticos and straight onto the Wabbit’s coat. "Grr," said the Wabbit and he tried to smooth his fur down. But that just made things worse and he felt damp and miserable. "Oh why can’t the Department send me on a new mission?" he muttered to himself.  "I’m bored and I’m wet and I’m in a bad mood.," He stopped for a moment and listened to the deluge smash on the road outside. He could hear something else. Something besides rain. It was faint, but his ears were keen and they swivelled around like antennae. It was a hollow sound, somewhere between a rattle and a tick. "Even the rain sounds annoyed," grumbled the Wabbit.

Thursday, October 04, 2012

Skratch, Ghost Bunny and the Cinema

Skratch the Cat Burglar headied to the cinema to watch a film called Bringing up Baby, not out of interest in leopards, but because he was writing a learned paper on director, Howard Hawks. It was due the next day and lateness made Skratch nervous.“Hello Skratch.” Skratch looked up to see Ghost Bunny emerge from a previous performance. She was the last being he wanted to meet, because Skratch never admitted to anyone, far less himself, that he was completely terrified of Ghost Bunny. He tried to hide this with a bonhomie that did little to convince Ghost Bunny - and in order to counter it, she also hailed Skratch like a long lost brother. “How’s the Wabbit?”  she cried with gusto. “Oh why do we always talk about the Wabbit?” asked Skratch. “He’s a wonderful role model,” said Ghost Bunny. “He’s a self-appointed hero and conceited too,” said Skratch. “What about you?” said Ghost Bunny, smiling to herself. “What’s that obscure film book you’re trying to hide?” “I’m not hiding it,” said Skratch, pushing it into his fur. “Leave it be", said Ghost Bunny, “you must foreground the signifier.” “You know about film?” gasped Skratch.”  I’m a Ghost of Pluto, First Class. I’ve seen all the films in this galaxy and beyond.” “Oooh!” said Skratch, “then you must have a favourite.” “I’m a scientific ghost and strictly neutral,” said Ghost Bunny. “Oh, go on, go on, go on,” said Skratch with enthusiasm and he danced from paw to paw. Ghost Bunny didn’t hesitate. “ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” she nodded.

Monday, October 01, 2012

The Wabbit and the Big Hit

The Wabbit and Lapinette hopped along the Corso Vinzaglio, deep in thought. “Well you’re very popular,” said Lapinette suddenly. The Wabbit cast a sidelong glance. “With the bomb in the market place, I mean,” added Lapinette. ” Sure,” said the Wabbit. “It had your name on it,” grimaced Lapinette. “I’m a smash hit!” replied the Wabbit. “Ah yes, of course,” said Lapinette. “Your enemies hit on you!” The Wabbit smiled. “Not quite,” he murmured. “That would imply an abrupt and disrespectful social manoeuvre.” “ Give me an example,” said Lapinette. “He hit on me for some cash,” scowled the Wabbit. Lapinette made enormous eyes and the Wabbit wasn’t sure if she was trying to pull his leg. He carried on regardless. “My enemies took out a hit on me,” said the Wabbit. “But they didn’t actually hit you,” smiled Lapinette.  “Fortunately not,” said the Wabbit. “If they’d hit me, they would have considered they had hit the nail on the head.” “But instead you hit the ground running,” suggested Lapinette. “More or less," grinned the Wabbit, ”I think you have the hang of it.” Lapinette thought and thought and then she found what she was looking for. “It’s just like that film with Sydney Poitier in it,” she said innocently. “Blackboard Jungle?” asked the Wabbit. “No,” smiled Lapinette. Without warning she dug him hard in the ribs and then in a low tone, whispered,  ”In the hit of the night!”