Thursday, December 31, 2015

8. The Wabbit and the Big Roll

Hotly pursued by Lapinette and the Wabbit, the canisters sped towards a deserted industrial zone. Blood Collectors gathered under a sinister moon and they were right in the way. "I can't stop the cans," cried Lapinette. The Wabbit would have shrugged but he was too busy keeping pace. "Let's give them some help," he yelled. Lapinette launched a powerful left foot at the nearest canister and struck it a mighty blow, The Wabbit knew the power of that foot. So he swung his paws three times and whacked the other canister dead centre. "Here's the blood we promised!" Lapinette put her paws to her lips and let out a blood curdling warble. A piercing whistle from the Wabbit split the air in two. As the canisters picked up extra speed, they bounced and slewed in an unpredictable fashion. Some Blood Collectors slithered to the side, But the cans crushed others like raspberry pies and left a trail of lumpy blood along the concrete. Lapinette wrinkled her nose. The stench was appalling and vapour spattered everywhere like bloody smog. The canisters crashed to a halt. Blood Collectors fell on them with abandon but the containers vibrated with staccato rattling and began to bulge. "They're gonna blow!" shouted the Wabbit. "I'm out of here!" yelled Lapinette. Now the noise was like two competing drum rolls and the canisters were twice their original size. As Lapinette and the Wabbit loped away they glanced up at a pale moon. "Can you see a face?" shouted Lapinette. The Wabbit's 28 teeth gleamed as two explosions lit the sickly night. "Everyone can!"

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

7. The Wabbit and the Runaway Barrel

Lightning lit a red sky and cracked buildings. But there was no thunder. All they could hear was rumbling and a strange sound from inside the cylinders. The Wabbit and Lapinette rolled the containers back to the team to tempt the Blood Collectors. But the sound from inside got louder and louder and the containers started to twitch,  "I can't hold it," yelled the Wabbit. "Neither can I," shouted Lapinette. The Wabbit's paws slithered on the metal surface and his feet left the ground. Lapinette was stuck to her container and span with it as it rolled.  In the distance he could hear Wabsworth and Skratch screaming, "Let go, let go!" But he couldn't. The cylinders rolled faster and the Wabbit and Lapinette rolled with them. Lapinette winced every time she scraped the metal floor of the bridge. The Wabbit screamed blue murder as if he was dying, "I'm losing all my fur," he yelled. Lapinette knew the Wabbit was inclined to exaggerate, but her frock was torn and would have to go to the cleaners. Just for a second the Wabbit's container veered to the side and slowed. The Wabbit sighed with relief, Then it shot forward with enormous speed and Lapinette's container followed suit. The containers were no longer spinning but gliding as if they knew where they were going. They both felt the grip loosen and made plans to jump. The Wabbit pulled his tummy in. "Just roll!" he shouted. Lapinette was already tumbling through the air so the Wabbit launched himself backwards. He hit the ground with his head and bent his ears to the side. But suddenly he was on his feet, running and bellowing, "Follow these cans!"

Sunday, December 27, 2015

6. The Wabbit & the Quantum Aurora

The lightning stopped and the sky changed. A solar wind sent Quantum the Time Travelling Train spiralling to a nearby railway bridge and the Blood Collectors turned tail and ran. Electron particles swept the red moon like a make up brush. Loops of cobalt and vermilion arched across the heavens. The Wabbit shook his head and laughed. "You don't see that every day." "Commander," shouted Jenny from the cab. "This was the only way we could land." The bridge shuddered in the gale. Mo and To, the Punk Snails, pushed blue canisters of snail blood towards them. "Our true blue blood," drawled Mo. "With sea salt and baking soda," yelled To. "A blood transfusion!" jeered Mo. "For confusion!" sneered To. The solar wind whistled across the bridge with fury and the canisters rocked as if they were alive. The Wabbit's fur prickled. Lapinette shivered. "Is there enough?" asked the Wabbit. "Oh, you don't need much," said Mo. The Wabbit didn't ask what it did. They heard Quantum's engines surge into life. "Can't stay long," shouted Jenny, "we used a lot of fuel to make this storm." Mo and To slithered back on board. A sudden flash lit the bridge and Quantum vanished into a turbulent sky. The wind dropped but the blue canisters shifted uneasily. Lapinette stared up. A blood red moon peered through the storm. "Better get moving," she murmured. "Let's rock and roll," shrugged the Wabbit.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

5. The Wabbit and the Bridge Too Far

The Wabbit knew they had to meet the creatures and he had a feeling it might be on the bridge. Quantum the Train was on the other side and could come no further. Anyway, a confrontation was inevitable. It was only a matter of where and when. Wabsworth blocked the bridge with the truck and and the team got out. Lapinette waved two automatics. "Who goes there?" she shouted. "State your business," yelled the Wabbit. "Speak or we fire!" shouted Wabsworth and he pointed his snazer. The creatures did not speak, but blood oozed along the asphalt and towards the team. The smell was overpowering and the sound was worse. It swirled and bubbled and made a slithering oily sound like molten molasses. The Wabbit was uncertain but he didn't show it. He raised his snazer gun and pointed at the leader. "Aim for their brains!" shouted Wabsworth. "Do they have brains?" sneered Lapinette. "Kill the brain and you kill the ghoul," hissed Skratch the Cat. The blood stopped dead and lapped backwards like a wave. The Wabbit hopped forward, put a foot in the blood and drew a crimson line along the bridge. "Talk," he said calmly "Talk or we'll finish you." An angry roar echoed from the iron struts. "Give us your blood!" The Wabbit turned his back on the creatures and winked at his team. "How much do we have in the truck?" "Litres and litres, Best royal blood from Kensington." smirked Lapinette. "Blue blood," laughed Skratch. A murmur of excitement came from the creatures. The Wabbit turned back and spoke sharply  "What do we get in return?" "You may pass freely," said the leader. "Then queue along the line," smiled the Wabbit, "and prepare for a treat ..."

Monday, December 21, 2015

4. The Wabbit and the Rain Truck

The Wabbit and Lapinette started to run, but the sky darkened. Lashing rain soaked their fur and it was hard to keep going. Every hop was an effort and the rain drove them back. It had little effect on the creatures. Whatever they were, they had speed and they were gaining. They squelched rapidly on a layer of blood that they laid down themselves and now the Wabbit could hear them. The sound was between a gurgling and a whistle. "Blood collectors," muttered the Wabbit. "What?" yelled Lapinette. "They're collectors!" shouted the Wabbit. "Debt collectors?" screamed Lapinette. The Wabbit shook his head but the rain was hard and it hurt his face. "Maybe!" he yelled. From the corner of her eye, Lapinette caught a reflection in the lake. It got bigger and she shielded her eyes with her paws. Looking up was a strain but she gradually turned. "Reinforcements!" she shouted. "Good idea," yelled the Wabbit. "Any ideas?" But now he too could see the reflection and it was something familiar. Beneath a giant parachute, Lapinette's truck swayed alarmingly in the gale. Two figures inside gripped what they could as the wind swept them close to the big shed. "Transport!" shouted Lapinette. She grabbed the Wabbit's paw and waded through shallow water in the direction of the shed. Hail the size of golf balls bounced from the Wabbit's head as he watched the truck hit the ground on its front wheels. With a shattering of glass, it bounced twice, spun three times and stopped. Skratch's paws pushed broken glass away from the shattered windscreen, "Inside!" The engine roared and they were gone ...

Saturday, December 19, 2015

3. The Wabbit and the Deserted City

The Wabbit and Lapinette picked their way through the ruins of a Deserted City. It looked familiar but wasn't quite right. Things were in the wrong place and a smell of decay was everywhere. Quantum the Train burst through the clouds. He hung but didn't land. The Wabbit nodded and watched Lapinette search. She pushed a red canister with her foot, then scowled as it spilled. Blood gushed and rapidly congealed on the dirty paving. The Wabbit's eyes drifted to movement on the far side of the square. "Lapinette?" he whispered. Lapinette studied the canister and murmured automatically. "Just a moment Wabbit." The Wabbit's voice was low and icy calm. "Come over here for a second and don't look round." Lapinette hopped to the Wabbit but her eyes swivelled slightly. On the edge of her vision she saw them. Her fur stood on end but she too was icy calm. She effected a nonchalant air of studied ignorance and hummed. "Tra la la, la lah." The Wabbit smiled inanely. "I'm going to hop backwards and pretend to take a photograph of you." "Oh yes let's!" said Lapinette with loud delight. "We'll share it with to all our friends." The movement at the far end of the square stopped. "I love being a tourist with no serious interest in anything much," boomed the Wabbit. Lapinette simpered breathlessly. "Did you bring a map? I've hardly the slightest clue where we are." The Wabbit pretended to look at a map but he saw a cloud of vapour hiss from Quantum's cab. It fell rapidly towards the beings at the end of the square. The Wabbit waved his map and turned. "If we don't make tracks, we might miss our train." "Run!" yelled Lapinette ...

Thursday, December 17, 2015

2. The Wabbit and the Steady Drip

They travelled inland - but everything they found was either ruined or abandoned or both. The Wabbit looked through the shattered roof of a warehouse. "That moon changed." Lapinette stared long and hard. "It can't be the same moon, unless the one we're on is spinning fast." Something dropped close to the Wabbit's ear. It landed with a splat followed by another, then another. The Wabbit stretched out a paw. This time there was no splat - more of a squelch. It was merely an interruption in the steady drip from the girders. Lapinette held out a paw and heard another squelch. She looked closely as a crimson stain spread across her fur. "More blood," said the Wabbit. His 28 teeth flashed in whatever light there was. Beyond the girders was pitch black and the more they stared, the blacker it seemed. "I can't see where it's coming from," murmured the Wabbit. "Or what," added Lapinette. The Wabbit gulped. "It's like the building is bleeding." Lapinette smiled a wan smile. "Buildings don't generally bleed." The Wabbit's teeth flashed again. "This one does." The blood made pools on what was left of the concrete floor. Then it spread and thickened. The Wabbit sniffed it. "Same smell as the sea." "Shhh," hushed Lapinette, "I can hear something." They listened. "A craft is coming out of slipstream drive," grinned the Wabbit. Lapinette smiled and frowned at the same instant. "I don't think it's safe for Quantum to land. We don't know what we're up against." The Wabbit thought quickly. "Let's get into the open, where the team can see us." Lapinette wiped her fur clean and hopped forward. "Something's out for blood." The Wabbit did the same. "Let's make sure it's not ours."

Friday, December 11, 2015

1. The Wabbit on the Blood Moon

Quantum the Train found himself drawn to the surface of the blood moon and there was nothing else to do but land. Lapinette and the Wabbit hopped out to investigate. But they'd only set paws on the moon when Quantum shuddered into slipstream drive and took off. The Wabbit shrugged and sighed. "They'll have to cope on their own." Waves crashed lazily on the beach. "We're marooned Wabbit," said Lapinette. "We have each other," grinned the Wabbit as he waded in the shallows of the scarlet sea. It was even hotter on the moon's surface and Lapinette was irritable. "What about that moon? I didn't see that other moon." "Maybe it hid round the back," said the Wabbit. Lapinette stamped a foot and seaweed crackled and popped. "Round the back of what?" "Round the back of the moon we're on now," said the Wabbit. "Moons don't hide," said Lapinette. The Wabbit shrugged again and he put a paw into the sea and scooped some up. It was gloopy and sticky. He sniffed it. Lapinette watched closely. "That sea looks like blood." The Wabbit sniffed again then cleaned his paw on the sand. "Because it is blood." Lapinette sniffed too and made a face. It smelled like rusty iron - and another musty odour that reminded her of an old engine she could never get working. "There's a lot of it," grimaced Lapinette. "You can't make blood," said the Wabbit. "Something brought it here." Lapinette nodded gravely. "Something with blood on its paws ..."

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

The Wabbit at the Deep Space Caffè

Quantum the Train hung in the deepest corner of space he could find. It was the darkest, most desolate spot you could imagine. This part of the galaxy didn't get passing trade and the few travellers who had to go that way, hurried as fast as they could. The Wabbit stared at his reflection in the dining car table. Lapinette knew he was thinking and access was limited, maybe impossible. Wabsworth, his android double, tried hard to communicate - but the Wabbit's face was immobile. Wabsworth turned to Lapinette. "He might come up with something." Lapinette knew he would. They just had to wait - and they did. No-one noticed it at first. A blood moon slowly rose and sat in the darkness. There was no horizon, no planets and no asteroids. Just a red moon that had no right to be there. Suddenly the Wabbit spoke, startling both Wabsworth and Lapinette. "A blood moon comes with an eclipse." Wabsworth nodded and smiled. "Some say it's Armageddon." Lapinette had been thinking too. "What about Project A119?" Wabsworth searched his memory banks. "I have all the files." "But they were destroyed," said Lapinette. Wabsworth grinned. "That never really happens." The Wabbit waited patiently for Wabsworth to explain. "Three warheads were planted in moon craters, to be detonated to find water." "What then?" asked Lapinette." "They were detonated," said Wabsworth, "but instruments revealed nothing." "As if they were never there," breathed the Wabbit ...

Monday, December 07, 2015

9. The Wabbit and the Quantum Flyer

Quantum the Train met the team half way. "On the footplate. Now Commander!" bellowed Quantum. Quantum held some impossibly high rank at the Department - so the Wabbit and Wabsworth hopped quickly. Lapinette and Skratch herded blue snails on board. But Mo and To felt too punk to easily comply. To looked up and drawled. "I wanna be a choo choo driver!" "Choose that train!" yelled Mo. Now the heat was so intense that eggs could have fried on the station concourse. Lapinette's voice was urgent. "Shut the slither, snails! No time for jokes." "This train is bound for glory, this train," sang Mo and he shot forward. Soon they were all on board and Quantum's engines powered up with a menacing roar. "Quantum, what the binkie is happening?" asked the Wabbit, "It's the moon, maybe?" "Not exactly," said Quantum. Wabsworth pulled a lever and the engine shook into slipstream drive. The Wabbit heard what sounded like a Quantum chuckle. "Red moon hits your eye, like a big pizza pie." "That ain't amore," sang the snails who were berthed in the dining car. "The moon is being used in a ghastly experiment," said Quantum. "Agents of Rabit?" asked Wabsworth. "An acronymic organisation like LUNAR?" suggested the Wabbit. "No one knows," said Quantum. Suddenly Lapinette's light hearted voice crackled from Wabsworth's walkie talkie. "The Nocturnal High Garrison of  Tribulation. NiGHT." The Wabbit was about to smile but another voice cut into Lapinette's transmission. "This is the voice of NiGHT. We can hear you, earth rabbits ..."

Friday, December 04, 2015

8. The Wabbit and the Snail Crossing

The Wabbit was adamant that they had to move on, so with an army of blue snails the team shifted through the Turin night. But when they came to the big bridge, it was damaged. There was nothing else but to ford the river and it didn't look fordable. Mo and To grinned. Then To tried a sneer. "We don't care about a broken bridge, we don't care about no river." His tone was whiny. "It's just a heap of mouldy bricks. It ain't so bleedin' clever." A curious whirring dented the heavy air as shells started to vibrate. The moon pulsed red. Layers of prickly heat settled on the city as one by one, blue snails lifted and flew across the river. Some snails preferred water and like paddle boats they propelled themselves through choppy waves with flapping shells. Mo and Lapinette landed first and slithered to a stop. The Wabbit braced for impact but To swooped and settled on a concrete ramp. "Where now, Wabbit?" Lapinette's voice warbled in the heat. The Wabbit stared at the moon. His radio suddenly crackled. "Wabbit, do you copy?" The Wabbit smiled. "I copy." He was relieved to hear that pirate voice. "Can you get to Officina di Riparazione?" said Jenny, "you have a train to catch." "We like trains," said To. "Catch 'em, board 'em, ride 'em!" yelled Mo. The Wabbit looked at Skratch and nodded. Skratch lifted a single paw high. "Head up, move out!" shouted the Wabbit. The snails gathered into an invincible rout and slithered as one ...

Wednesday, December 02, 2015

7. The Wabbit and the Snail Gang

"Turn off the lights," said the Wabbit. The lightbar flickered and died. As far as the eye could see, there were blue snails and they all whirred gently in the light of a red moon. "Police! Let's split," shouted a snail. "No, we can take them," shouted another. Skratch watched all this with interest. "What's a group of snails called?" The Wabbit lifted a paw. "A rout. Wait." A series of instructions rang out and the snails whirred to a halt. Two larger snails emerged from the rout and slithered to the car. "Commander!" The Wabbit's 28 teeth grinned ear to ear. "Mo and To!" shouted Lapinette. "We are ..." said Mo. Their antennae wiggled alarmingly. "... the Snail Gang," said To. It had been more than a year since the Wabbit heard from the MoTo Snails. The MoTo snails were punk snails with attitude. Retrofitted and high speed, they were formidable foes. "What's with that old devil moon?" drawled Mo. To whined punkily. "Is that your razzle dazzle, Wabbit?" The Wabbit spread his paws and shook his head. "It's got everyone freaked," said Mo, "that and the hairy heat." "We don't like it hot," said To. "Except for the car. It looks like it might be hot." Skratch waved a paw. "We temporarily removed it from its parking space." "That's cool," breathed To. But the rout whirred uneasily, then girders glowed as the blood moon pulsed. The Wabbit looked up. "Let's find cover." He paused and thought. "What time is it?" But no-one knew.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

6. The Wabbit and Borrowed Wheels

Lapinette and the Wabbit were swept along in a cloud of blue light and burning rubber. Skratch hurtled down an alley way and he didn't intend to stop. "Wheels!" gasped the Wabbit. "Ferrari based engine, 600 HP," purred Skratch. "How?" asked Lapinette. "We borrowed it," shrugged Wabsworth. Tyres squealed as Skratch swerved into the street and headed across the city. "Go go go!" yelled Wabsworth. Skratch switched off the sirens but not the lightbar. Now the Wabbit could hear other sirens wail - but they were fading fast.  He quietly wondered how many lunches this would cost him. Lapinette dragged her legs through the window and sat up. "Take a left, then a right." Skratch had a choice of throttles. The Alfa stood on its rear wheels and pounced into the night. Signals meant nothing to Skratch and a variety of street furniture suffered. The Wabbit glanced out the rear window and watched trash cans dance across the street. Lapinette continued to give directions. The Wabbit had no clue where they were going but he said it anyway. "This is an unusual route." "No police," responded Lapinette. "Gangs" asked the Wabbit. "Tonight," said Lapinette, "the police is another gang." "Quite a big gang," hissed Wabsworth. His eyes were trained on a spot a long way off. "Is that the place?" Lapinette nodded. "Then we have more company," grimaced Wabsworth.

Friday, November 27, 2015

5. The Wabbit's Close Encounter

Lapinette raced frantically out the exit and into the waiting paws of the Wabbit. "You're early," panted Lapinette. "You're late," said the Wabbit. Lapinette shook her head and finally laughed. "How did you get here?" "I surfed the spit," said the Wabbit. "Fast was fine. I took off on a wave and popped out the other end." "Spit," whistled Lapinette. "I guess it was all in one bit!" She relaxed and glanced about. "Where are the others?" "Looking for wheels," said the Wabbit. The air was hot again and it wrapped round them like a prickly woolen blanket. Sirens wailed in the near distance. "I don't think we're popularity plus," sighed the Wabbit. "We got the blame for everything and anything." There's never a shortage of blame," giggled Lapinette. The Wabbit's paws felt capable and she snuggled a bit. "We have a way to go yet," said the Wabbit and he held her close. Sirens shrieked. "They're heading this way," muttered the Wabbit. "We'd better hide," smirked Lapinette. The Wabbit picked Lapinette up and hopped to a courtyard. Lapinette's ears twitched. "Which police is it?" The Wabbit was thinking the same thing - but then he made out a second siren. "We need to get ready to jump." "I'm not sure we have the time," smiled Lapinette. The Wabbit felt Lapinette's lips draw close. But a sudden screeching rent the night. Glass shattered somewhere. "Ready or not," grinned the Wabbit ...

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

4. The Wabbit and the Trail of Spits

Lapinette thought they'd got off light. The station looked deserted and they headed for the exit. But from the corner of her eye, Lapinette saw another gang. "Oh no, the Spits!" she thought. "I heard they were were all inside." They'd managed to corner the Wabbit and stood over him flapping their tongues and scoffing. "Rabbits. Ha Ha Ha," said one. The other spat a trail of ghastly gob and snorted heavily. Then he spat again. Lapinette kept running but she could hear the Wabbit talking and hoped no spit landed on the Wabbit's fur. His fur was real enough but it was interwoven with anti-matter and chemically volatile. She knew what might happen and ran faster. But her sharp ears heard the Wabbit winding them up and she knew the Spits were getting furious. With an enormous burst, one of them launched a long trail of phlegm that coiled through the air and landed splat on the Wabbit's fur. Lapinette ran even harder but she risked another glance back. One of her favourite games was Candy Crash and that was exactly what it looked like. The Wabbit's fur glowed red and there seemed to be more than one Wabbit. Then the Wabbit's fur threw modified spit to all corners - and everywhere it landed it exploded threefold. Lapinette was nearly at the top of the escalator. It occurred to her that the exit looked within spitting distance and she firmly pushed that thought away. She narrowly avoided exploding fountains of spit and dived through the exit. "Whatever's next on the street," she sighed, "it can't be as awful as this ..."

Monday, November 23, 2015

3. The Wabbit and the Three Fugues

They made good headway but the Fugues beat them to it. The Fugues were no pushover. Despite poor memories, Johnny, Wolfie and Luddy were as case hardened as they come. Wabsworth was the designated stooge and he hopped foppishly towards them. For their own part, the Wabbit and Lapinette were annoyingly distracting. The Fugues swung their thuggish weapons in various directions. "Our Turf!" they yelled. Wabsworth smiled sweetly. "We're The Wabbiors. We're passing peacefully through your turf. What's it called?" Johnny looked at writing on his cuff. "This is FugueVille. You're dead rabbits hopping." "We're not all rabbits," said Wasbworth cheerfully. Three metallic clicks echoed along the platform and back. "Snick. Snack. Snoo," meowed a feline voice. Johnny and Luddy stepped back. But not Wolfie, who brandished a hammer. "You caused the storm!" The Wabbit poked Luddy's cudgel in an investigative manner. "Nope," he murmured convincingly. "That was the Superga Hillbillies." Luddy checked his cuff and looked up and screamed. "I hate Hillbillies!" "So do we," smiled Lapinette. She patted Wolfie's hand and detached his hammer. "Just trying to get back to our turf," said Wabsworth, darting for the train. In the momentary confusion, Skratch the Cat took advantage and leaped out. Slashing claws carved the sign of a "W" in the stale subway air. "That's my train," he hissed. Then he jumped. The doors hissed shut and they were gone. The Fugues looked at each other blankly. "Something happened?" said Wolfie.

Friday, November 20, 2015

2. The Wabbit on the Tough Turf

"There ain't no-one on this street," muttered Skratch. The lightning had stopped and the hot storm with it. And now it was calm. Ice calm. Buildings looked like they came out of the chiller and the streets were deserted. But that didn't mean there was no-one. The road vanished to nowhere and from nowhere came a sound like a call. It was a haunting call that froze the blood and suddenly there were as many calls as cobbles on the road. Lapinette hopped forward. "This isn't our turf. We need to cross it." From her frock she drew an edged weapon that glinted in whatever light there was. "It's not a normal night and these aren't normal streets." The Wabbit and Wabsworth searched their fur. Finally they drew the only blades they had. "A multi purpose kit is better than nothing," muttered the Wabbit. Skratch the Cat didn't look in his fur. A powerful snick stabbed the night and razor-sharp claws shot from his paw. "Who's making the rumpus?" Lapinette stared hard into the distance. "The Fugues. Small time. Normally our paths wouldn't cross." "Maybe the Metro's running," suggested the Wabbit. "They're between us and the Metro," said Lapinette. Her eyes smiled for an instant. "Fugues can't remember much." "So maybe they'll forget themselves," quipped Wabsworth. The Wabbit grinned a sceptical grin. "So are ya ready to rumble?" "I'm a cat," said Skratch. "We always are."
[Lightroom credit:  Mick Warne]

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

1. The Wabbit on Scorched Turf

Hot coals hurtled past the Wabbit's head. "I draw the line at flying combustion," grimaced the Wabbit and he pulled his radio from his fur. The air was electric and their ears rippled and jumped. Wabsworth checked around with a meter but results came up zero. The walkie-talkie was silent so the Wabbit struck it sharply with a paw. Nothing. The Wabbit switched to short wave. Now he could hear a faint voice. "This is the Department of Wabbit Affairs." There was a chime and a crackle. Then the voice spoke again. "This is the Department of Wabbit Affairs." "This," said Lapinette, "is getting on my nerves." "This," said the Wabbit, "sounds like an automatic transponder." Skratch swiped at burning embers and hissed. "This sounds like an emergency." Wabsworth was an android and he searched though data modules. The Wabbit looked at him. "Anything?" Wabsworth shrugged. "Nothing and a half." "It's nothing on earth then," said Lapinette, "this comes from off-planet." "A third force?" suggested the Wabbit. "Oh I lost count," sighed Skratch. Lightning flashed but the storm was silent, just waves of heat. "We need shelter and a thinking space," said the Wabbit. "I know where," said Lapinette. The Wabbit nodded then looked at the city. "No weapons. We don't know what we'll hop into." "We've got blue glasses and attitude," said Wabsworth.

Monday, November 16, 2015

The Wabbit's Blues Adventure Caffè

It wasn't as if they could just leave. The beeps didn't work like that. Everyone had to perform and so the Wabbit shrugged and took the stage. "One Two Three Four!" yelled Wabsworth who had mysteriously appeared with Skratch the Cat in tow. "Every-body! Every-body!" sang Skratch, "Every-body. Beeps some-body." The beeps swirled and circled and beeped wildly. "Glad so many of you could beep here tonight to alert us," shouted the Wabbit. "We all need a warning and someone to be warned by our side." A cacaphony of delighted beeps bounced from the walls. Lapinette grabbed the Wabbit's paw. "Let's go. Let's get out while the getting is good." Wabsworth clapped his paws. Skratch set up a devastating riff. The atmosphere was electric. If beeps had feet they would have stomped - but they kept time to Wabsworth's clapping. Repetitive solid beeps shook the building while Skratch's paws picked and slid notes between them. Now, Lapinette and the Wabbit were nearly out the door and none of the beeps had noticed. But outside didn't look promising. Anything but. They waited in the corridor until Skratch and Wabsworth finished. "Looked like you needed some notes," panted Skratch. The Wabbit had been rather impressed. "How many paws have you got?" "One less than I need," smiled Skratch. The Wabbit pushed the exit bar but a fierce wind slammed the door back with a terrible crash. "We need all the paws we can get!" said Lapinette ...

Friday, November 13, 2015

6. The Wabbit and the Beepnik

"Looks like the scene is set to hop," said Lapinette. "Maxo," said the Wabbit in an attempt to sound cool. He poked cables around and made random connections. A deafening whine assaulted their ears. "Woopso," muttered the Wabbit and he made a few changes. "Beep, you dig the beep, Daddy-O!"  The Beep was agile for its shape and it advanced on Lapinette. "I'm hip to the Beep," said Lapinette and she stuck out a paw at an awkward angle. The Beep transmitted a rapid series of beeps and asked, "You the chirp?" Lapinette postured and threw shapes. "Get your glasses on!" Beeps streamed so fast they shrilled like a locomotive. The Beep turned to the Wabbit. "Message for you Pops." Up to this point, the Wabbit felt left out. His nose twitched imperceptibly. His ears wiggled. Then he shrugged dramatically. The beeps became musical and played a short tune. "I'm a beepin' out danger," beeped the Beep. "I'm a beepin' out warnin'." The Wabbit waited some time and the beeps became rhythmic. The Wabbit's question arrived like a hammer. "Why?" "It's my job," replied the Beep. "I'm an alert." "What's the warning for?" said Lapinette. The beeps became slow. "I don't know. You are now alerted. Enjoy the gig." Now they could hardly hear the beeps. The Wabbit made a few adjustments with some success and the beeps strengthened. Then the Wabbit had an idea. "Are you a small. medium or major alert?" The Beep beeped loudly. "Imminent threat ..."
[Chirp: female singer (slang)]

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

5. The Wabbit and the Blues Beepers

They chased the beeps through puddles but when the street dried they lost them. "What the..?" said the Wabbit. It was then they heard it. Floating through the air. These were softer beeps with more beeps to the bar. "Beep beep beep. Beep beep beep beep." A tall figure leaned forward, one of two characters on the corner. "Just musicians ma'am. No cause for alarm." They rubbed their eyes in amazement but the two singers were still there. Now it was a driving beep. The Wabbit's head started to nod and his feet began to tap. Lapinette found herself swaying and she just couldn't stop. The Wabbit rummaged and pulled a blues harmonica from his fur. Lapinette found an old microphone in her frock. "That beep beep beep," sang the Wabbit. "Knocks us off our feet," sang Lapinette. "We really had to leap," sang the Wabbit. "But we didn't dig the beep," warbled Lapinette. The Wabbit's harmonica wailed louder, then beeped and mysteriously stopped. "You got trouble?" asked the tall singer. The Wabbit nodded his head. "The beeps want something. We're chasin' the beeps." The singers chuckled and looked at each other. "Don't that beep all!" The Wabbit's grin was lopsided and the tall one took pity. "They're here, round the back," "It's the scene for beepniks," said the other. The Wabbit and Lapinette raced round the corner and out of sight. The musicians stared after them. "Was that the Blues Bunnies?"

Monday, November 09, 2015

4. The Wabbit and the Rainy Leap

The Wabbit had to take a decision and he thought it better be fast. He grabbed Lapinette by the fur and pushed her over the bridge. "Leap!" he yelled and then he leaped too. It was a long way but the sound of lashing rain covered the beeping and for a moment things seemed calm. Lapinette looked down. She picked a clear spot, adjusted her ears and spread out. The Wabbit squinted at the ground, scrunched his shoulders and started to roll in a ball. Their plummet seemed to take a while so the Wabbit thought about the beep and tried to figure what it wanted. Lapinette also tried to figure what the beep wanted. Then she mentally cancelled three appointments, replacing them with one at the furdressers. The ground approached.  Lapinette could hear it coming because every drop of rain that fell made a squelchy beep. The Wabbit hit the ground with a thud and rolled across the puddles. Lapinette threw her legs forward, her arms back and landed as gracefully as any seabird. The wind dropped but the clouds continued to throw rain. Liquid beeps filled the air and the old abandoned shopping centre echoed them. It was a raindrenched symphony that alerted the Wabbit to something and he tried to grasp its meaning. Suddenly the rain stopped and with it, the beeping. Lapinette saw the Wabbit's face. "Did you get it?" The Wabbit shook his head. The beeping started again. "The beep goes on," sighed the Wabbit.

Friday, November 06, 2015

3. The Wabbit's Beep on the Bridge

High on the bridge it was windy but it was the quickest way. Lapinette grabbed her ears with one paw and held down her frock with the other. The Passerella Olimpica wasn't usually that bad but the wind carried a deafening beep that made them nervous. The Wabbit steadied Lapinette as gusts blew her right and left. "This isn't wind," yelled the Wabbit, "this is sound." The bridge swayed like a drunken pianist. Gale force beeps tore at their fur. The Wabbit shrugged as best he could, gritted his 28 teeth and ploughed on. "It's talking to us," he shouted. Lapinette managed a smile. "Have you been at the cooking whisky again?" The Wabbit thought briefly and decided it was a good idea. "Did you see the shapes?" "I saw some stuff," yelled Lapinette, "and that square nearly hit me in the eye." The Wabbit's ears looped back and flattened. "OK, there's your square, a saw, a sine, and ...." The Wabbit ducked as a triangle whirled past his head. Lapinette was sceptical. "You always have all the angles, Wabbit." The Wabbit agreed, but avoided saying so. "These beeps are nothing but trouble," he grumbled. Lapinette grabbed his fur. "I'll be glad to get off this thing!" The Wabbit looked into the distance and studied the end of the bridge. It looked perfectly calm and he frowned. "I think we're stuck." "Lapinette frowned too. "On this beeping bridge?" The Wabbit groaned and mimed a radio. "Beep us down, Scotty."

Wednesday, November 04, 2015

2. The Wabbit and the Beeping Exhibit

The beep came from the Art Gallery. It was well locked but that didn't seem to worry the Wabbit, who did something with a credit card and a nail file. Locks snapped open with three short beeps and lights flooded the hall. "Can you stop this infernal beeping?" said an Exhibit. The Wabbit hopped up to examine the upper structure, while Lapinette knelt to listen to a very small figure. But she couldn't hear him for beeps because her paws were beeping loudly. The Wabbit asked a question. "What about the audible alert?" Two eyes flared. "It came this way and beeped at us and now we're beeping too." "What was it like?" asked the Wabbit. The Exhibit gave a snort. "It's a beeping sound, it goes beep. Anyway, what's your name?" "I'm the Wabbit and this is Lapinette," replied the Wabbit. The Exhibit's eyes flickered. "Where are your tickets?" "We broke in," shrugged the Wabbit. "Excellent," said the Exhibit, "it's good someone came." The Wabbit's ears pricked up at at the sound of another alert. "Piezo-ceramic transducer," said Lapinette. "He's not our main beep." "We're knee deep in beeps," said the Wabbit. "Where can they all be going?" Suddenly Lapinette bent close to the small creature and listened. "I got a lead. A place where beeps hang out."

Monday, November 02, 2015

1. The Wabbit and the Unwanted Alert

The Wabbit couldn't sleep. An audible alert kept sounding and he couldn't find it anywhere. He searched his wardrobe to track down all radio devices and found some he couldn't remember he had. But the annoying alert kept going. He examined clocks, computers, cooking appliances and cameras and they all started to beep too. The microwave, food mixer, toaster and kettle joined in. But they weren't exactly the same beep and the source of the original alert remained elusive. "Where the Binky is it?" muttered the Wabbit. He put his coat on, lifted two radios that he judged had the most authentic beep - and made his way to the street. By this time he was bad-tempered and he barely heard Lapinette scampering up with a beeping radio. "Wabbit, what's this alert? Even my fur drier is beeping." The Wabbit moved his head away from the radios. "They're not really beeps. They're analog. They're a recording of beeps." Lapinette was irritable. "Why? My automatic is beeping. My make up case is beeping. Everything is beeping." "It's a warning, copying itself to all your devices," said the Wabbit. "I know it's a warning!" yelled Lapinette, "but I want to be de-beeped!" "Maybe if we find out what the alert is for," murmured the Wabbit, "we can disable it." Lapinette's ears swivelled and focussed. "I can hear it now. And it seems to be moving." "Let's follow it, " said the Wabbit, "or we'll never get a wink of bleep."

Friday, October 30, 2015

The Wabbit's Hallowe'en Surprise

It was Hallowe'en and the moon stared relentlessly down on the old abandoned power station, where they'd arranged to meet at midnight for a Hallowe'en party. The Wabbit thought it seemed more desolate than usual and he gingerly took a step down the iron staircase. "Hello?" he shouted. It wasn't much of a shout, more of a loud whisper that crept along the railings and vanished. It was then that he made out the shape. It looked like a large rabbit with an axe and the Wabbit's heart lurched. "The Bunnyman!" He stepped back up the staircase. The Bunnyman's claws rasped along the axe shaft until they made a metal chink at the top. The Wabbit shuddered. "Monsters are real," he muttered and felt in his fur for a weapon. All could find was a dangly skeleton from the supermarket and a bit of black bun that had seen better days. The Wabbit kept calm. "He doesn't come until midnight. Only then can he dismember us all." From some distance away he heard faint church bells and he counted them. It was midnight. But the Wabbit heard something else too. It was just a movement but curiosity proved too much. He hopped down the steps. Eyes looked at him from everywhere and a deep voice spoke. "Push the Bunnyman, push him now!" "I'll get him!" yelled the Wabbit and he took a running jump and kicked him. With a crump and a clatter the figure fell over and the Wabbit blinked. It was a life size cardboard cut-out of himself. "That'll teach him!" yelled the Wabbit.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The Wabbit at the Adventure Caffè

Conversation flew at the Adventure Caffè and by the time Skratch the Cat arrived, things were heated. "Question!" demanded Lapinette. She raised a paw like she'd seen in music promos. "How could Moloch be a small creature? He was never on Quantum's shuttle flights." Skratch waited silently but he knew no-one was going to ask him the question - so he answered it himself. "It was narrative non-linearity!" No one heard him so he raised his voice. "The adventure challenges the format of our stories and invites a different point of view!" Everyone looked round. "Oh hello Skratch," said the Wabbit, "I ordered you an aperitivo." Skratch looked fixedly at Moloch. "Moloch, how do you fit in to that seat?" Moloch's tummy swelled enormously. Then he laughed fit to burst and nearly did. "I discovered I could change sizes to fit into stories." His tummy rumbled and swelled again. The Wabbit waved for food and asked his own question. "How is everyone feeling after we merged?" "I don't feel different at all. Is there any beer?" said Lapinette. The Wabbit looked with horror because he knew Lapinette hated beer. "You need reprogramming," he sighed. "How does that work?" asked Lapinette. The Wabbit adopted a serious expression. "Every time you ask for beer, I give you prosecco." "Oh the pain," smiled Lapinette.

Monday, October 26, 2015

6. The Wabbit's Creature Like Him

The Wabbit's nose was blocked again and he wheezed a bit. A movement disturbed him and he plucked a small creature from his fur. The creature looked just like him. It was shouting but its voice was so faint, he could barely hear it. He choked back a sniffle and bent forward. Now he could hear the odd word. "Danger, warning!" cried the creature. "Doom, annihilation." "What kind of danger?" murmured the Wabbit softly. To the creature this sounded like thunder, but he persisted in talking. The Wabbit tried very hard to hear as the creature that looked like him launched into a long explanation. He spoke urgently of antimatter and various kinds of particles of which the Wabbit had no knowledge whatsoever.  But the creature that looked like him was convincingly convincing and the Wabbit's fur stood on end. The substance of his story was an unfortunate saga of shuttle mishaps that had left particles of the Wabbit's fur all along the dust trail of the mighty Sombrero Galaxy. The Wabbit's fur was a cunning interweaving of real fur and antimatter, which allowed him to carry an extraordinary amount of kit entirely weightlessly. So this was unfortunate indeed. The Wabbit tried to speak quietly and his voice was more of a snuffle than a sniffle. "Whatsh the sholution?" "We all have to merge," said the creature. Now the Wabbit felt upset. He was beginning to like the creature that looked like him. "Will we be different?" "Better," said the creature. The Wabbit immediately turned and shouted. "Embrace the creatures!" But it was already happening ...

Friday, October 23, 2015

5. The Wabbit & the Believable Dome

The dome looked good and the Wabbit hoped it worked as well as it looked. All around him, miniature versions of himself and his team steadily advanced, making no noise whatsoever, not even tiny scuttling. The silence was overwhelming. The Wabbit dived after Lapinette and shouted. "What do we do inside?" Lapinette loped to the shelter. "Breathing space." "What the binky are these things up to?" asked the Wabbit. Lapinette was nearly at the dome. "Each time they copy us, they use a bit of our DNA," she panted. ""Eventually there will be thousands of them - and nothing left of us." "Mother of Mercy!" screamed Moloch. "Is this the end of Moloch?" The Wabbit flicked one away but it made four copies of his paw and they all waved. "They're tap dancing on my nerves," shouted the Wabbit, "where's the door?" "It doesn't have a door," shouted Lapinette. "You have to believe you can go through it." With that she vanished and reappeared inside. Moloch beat his chest. "I am the Great Moloch!" He folded his arms and in an instant he was peering out from the safety of the dome. But the Wabbit shook his head. In these circumstances he only knew one effective way to get in. He took a long run and with a yell of "Open says me!" he viciously kicked the sphere. Inside, he picked himself up and limped across to look at his reflection. "That never fails," he nodded.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

4. The Wabbit and the Stairway Copy

"Quickly," shouted Lapinette.  "They're coming." When they'd got the message, the Wabbit and Moloch had rushed to the Old Tower. As they panted up the steps they felt their heads clear. But although the Wabbit could scamper up anything, he hated steep. "What's going down?" he barked. "Wabbit," said Lapinette curtly. "Did you leave a model helichopper in Quantum's cab?" "On a shelf," sighed the Wabbit. "Near the filters?" asked Lapinette. The Wabbit didn't have to nod. Lapinette urged them up the stairs. "These creatures are shape shifters, they copy what they fancy." "Well I hope they don't fancy Moloch," laughed the Wabbit. Moloch's wings spread in the narrow stairway. "I am one of a kind," said Moloch, "No-one would dare." The Wabbit caught something in the corner of an eye and growled. "They can really copy living things?" Lapinette became exacerbated. "We don't know. Get a move on. I want to get this door shut." "They do stay small, don't they?" asked the Wabbit and he edged up the wall. "No-one knows," hissed Lapinette. "Hurry up!" The Wabbit glanced back, narrowed his eyes and thought that it might be too late. But it was the only idea he had. "Moloch can you make a bit of breeze with your wings?" "Direction?" smiled Moloch. "Four o'clock low," murmured the Wabbit. Moloch's wings swivelled with precision and a hurricane blasted the stairway. "Go, go, go ...!" yelled Lapinette.

Monday, October 19, 2015

3. The Wabbit and Stardust Souvenirs

Even though he was groggy, the Wabbit met Quantum's shuttle from the Sombrero Galaxy as arranged. Quantum swam into view around about one o'clock and dropped into Pluto Park. Even though he was a famous monster, Moloch was astonished. "How much transhport have you got, Wabbit?" he snivelled.  The Wabbit did his best to grin. His fur was damp and his nose was red and his head felt like a balloon. Skratch called down from the cab. "Is here OK, Commander?" The Wabbit noticed movement and he scanned Quantum from tip to tail. The entities were small but brightly coloured and one came close to Moloch's face. "Achsplash groo," sneezed Moloch. The ground shook. "Hey Shkratch," yelled the Wabbit, "you brought pashengers." Skratch looked up and down. "I don't see anything!" At that moment an entity landed on his head, right between his ears. Skratch started to itch and his eyes watered like fountains. "Did you schtop anywhere unushual, Shkratch?" shouted the Wabbit through his nose. "We followed the dusht lane," sniffled Skratch. "and we only shtopped to clean our filters." The Wabbit shrugged wearily. "Shomething happened." Skratch thought for a second. "We saw a pair of shumthings wink near the black hole." "A wink?" questioned Moloch sagely and he paused to swipe an entity that got in hs eye. "That's allmoasht ash good as a nod."

Friday, October 16, 2015

2. The Wabbit & the Sneeze on Wheels

Things went from bad to worse. The Wabbit could feel every sinus channel known to rabbits. Moloch had a monster sinus and he was stuffed. "Thish is terrible," said the Wabbit. "Monstroush," snivelled Moloch. It was at this juncture they both heard the noise. "Jid you hear an Ah?" asked Moloch. "It shertainly ish an Aaaah," agreed the Wabbit. Buildings shook and tortured metal shrieked. "I didn't like the shound of dat," said Moloch and half turned. It came without warning like a thief in the night. "Itch not going to shtop," yelled the Wabbit and he jumped out the way. "I gave thish short of thing up," shouted Moloch and he followed the Wabbit. It was a tram all right but entirely composed of a cloudy scalding vapour that cleaned the street as it went. "Aaaaaahhh!" it wailed. "Aaaaaaah!" The Wabbit knew there was more to come and he said it under his breath. "Choo?" The tram flashed past and they felt its fiery breath. "Aaaaaaaah Chooooooo!" Traffic lights shattered. Shop windows blew out and scattered goods far and wide. Moloch had closed his eyes. "Ish it gone yet?" The Wabbit was somewhat muffled. "For ush ..  yesh," Moloch strained to hear because his ears had clogged up. Moloch looked as woebegone as the Wabbit felt in his fur. "Would you like a pashtille?" Moloch croaked, "I like shinnamon loshenges."

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

1. The Wabbit and the Big Sneeze

The Wabbit was at a loose end and when he was at a loose end he loped around the city fretting. But he took an alleyway off Via Garibaldi and found himself in a square. There were lot of squares in Turin, but this one had vague advertising signs. And although the Wabbit looked at them for some time, he couldn't figure out what they were for. "Hello Wabbit!" said a voice. "Moloch!" smiled the Wabbit. The Wabbit was secretly pleased because he felt he could use some company. "What's this for?" He indicated the sign with Moloch's picture and asked, "Are you having a monster promotion?" Moloch shook his considerable head. "Nothing to do with me, I have my hands full." They both pondered but were suddenly interrupted. "Achoo!" "Bless you," said the Wabbit." "It wasn't me," said Moloch, "I thought it was you, Wabbit." "Achoo!" The Wabbit looked around. "There it is again," Then he felt his nose tickle. "Achoooo," blasted the Wabbit. Small pieces of paper skittered along the paving, driven by the force. Moloch put his massive hand over his massive mouth. "Yaaaagh chook" he yelled. They both turned and looked at the sign. "Yak choo choo!" The sign rocked from side to side and spoke. "I can't help it. There's something in the air." The Wabbit sniffed. His nose began to tickle and the back of his throat felt dry. "I don't like the feel of this," he coughed. "Let's investigate," said Moloch, who's eyes were beginning to stream. " Before someone catches something," spluttered the Wabbit ...

Monday, October 12, 2015

The Wabbit's Adventure Caffè

Skratch was late but everyone waited for him. "Skratch! At last," said the Wabbit. "We couldn't possibly start without you." Skratch waved a paw and laughed. "You're expecting me to ask the question!" Lapinette and Red Rabbit smirked at each other but the Wabbit kept a straight face. "The question is this. What kind of adventure were we in?" "Well, if we don't ask the question, we'll never know," said Skratch. "I know," said Red Rabbit. "It was a thriller and it was predicated upon questions of captivity and escape." "Ah," said Skratch, "the audience hoped things would be OK and feared it woudn't." "Ahem," said Lapinette, who was trying to intervene without success. "The background of paranoia places the adventure in the noir category with a clear reference to Orson Welles." The Wabbit tapped the table. "In this, symbolism was critical. The Paws of Darkness connoted an underground force with inescapable values. No one can break free." "We broke free," said Red Rabbit. There was silence for a minute. The Wabbit nodded. "But we had a moral code of mythic proportions." "And the Three Fates to help us," said Skratch, "but ... " "But what?" asked the Wabbit. Skratch sighed. "But we meet our destiny on the path we take to escape it." Lapinette thought for quite a while. "So what is our destiny?" It was the Wabbit's turn to think and then he smiled. "To keep having adventures of course!"

Friday, October 09, 2015

9. The Wabbit and the Far off Temple

They all blinked in the fierce sun. And it was hot. Very very hot. The air smelled of drying rabbit fur, which was tangy to say the least. The thousand red rabbits hopped around ancient Greek temples and searched for grapes and figs. "We have the gift of Aphrodite," said Magic Red Rabbit. "Oh really," said the Wabbit observing steam rising from his fur. "Fertility," said Lapinette. "Was that what the Paws of Darkness wanted?" This was speculation rather than a question. "Well, it wasn't sweet, sweet loving," quipped the Wabbit. "Are they completely destroyed?" asked Skratch the Cat. "Their kind never are," said Jenny sadly and she tilted her hat in the glare of the sun. "What's that smell?" sniffed Skratch. "Just a passing wind," said the Wabbit, pointing a paw to the horizon. There wasn't a breath of wind and they gasped in the heat. "Shall we hang around here and bake?" said Lapinette. "Or shall we get a drink?" The Wabbit turned to Magic Red Rabbit. "You're supposed to be magic." "It's a courtesy title," said Red Rabbit, "but I can do tricks." Such as?" smiled the Wabbit. "I can take things out of hats," said Red Rabbit. The Wabbit looked round at Jenny who shook her head vigorously. "I never take my hat off!" she exclaimed. It was at that moment that Tipsy called from the roof of the temple. "I can see a bar!" "Is the bar far?" asked the Wabbit. "Not as far as I can see," shouted Tipsy. "So far so good," said the Wabbit. And they all laughed and laughed and laughed.

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

8. The Wabbit and the Depth Charges

The sounds were like hisses. The kind a soda bottle makes when the cap comes off fast. The Wabbit knew the sounds and he felt his paws sting. "What the Wopsie ..?" said Magic Red Rabbit. Lapinette thought Red Rabbit had been with them too long. "Get ready," she said. "If they can come down, then we can go up." Magic Red Rabbit stared at Fitzy, Mitzy and Tipsy. "What are these things they're carrying?" "SubRocks," said the Wabbit. "If these go down, then we'll all go up fast!" Fitzy, Mitzy and Tipsy dropped from the ropes and pointed at everyone. "All. Up!" shouted Tipsy. "Go doodly go!" shouted Mitzy. Fitzy placed the depth charges in the water, turned dials and yelled. "Boom Boxes Away!" The wakes the charges left looked like shark fins as they sped up the cavern. "Good grief," muttered the Wabbit in horror and they all hopped for the ropes. A thousand red rabbits sped after them and they could certainly climb. Fitzy, Mitzy and Tipsy grabbed the ropes and shimmied roofwards like ferrets up a drainpipe. They were all near the top when they heard a low rumbling. Then water convulsed as three explosions turned the underground lake into a liquid fireball. In the distance they heard some kind of awful shrieking and momentarily covered their ears with whatever paws were available. "Fuzzywig!" said the Magic Red Rabbit.

Monday, October 05, 2015

7. The Wabbit Under Ground

"If there's a way in," said the Wabbit, "there's a way out." It was a Stygian space and the Wabbit half expected a ferryman. So he rummaged in his fur for his emergency coin and splashed through the waters in search of an exit sign. Of the three, it was Magic Red Rabbit that looked determined. With a thousand red rabbits following, he felt responsible and refused to be scared. But Lapinette scowled. "What about Plan B?" She was damp and cold and had no fur drier to paw. The Wabbit smiled with fake cheer. "The team has our coordinates." "Can they track under ground?" asked Lapinette. The Wabbit wasn't certain but didn't say. Water ran down the pillars. It wasn't a torrent but its level in the cavern was getting deeper. "Humidity sullies my fur," muttered the Wabbit. Lapinette said nothing but she knew her fur would shortly look like dreadlocks. Then Magic Red Rabbit's ears did something strange. "I can hear something." "Stop!" said the Wabbit. Behind him, four thousand paws came to a sudden standstill. Lapinette listened but could only hear the steady drip of dank water. Red Rabbit looked from left to right and straight up. "I heard someone swear." The Wabbit couldn't hear a thing and he shook his head. "What kind of swearing?" "Polite swearing," said Red Rabbit. "Like 'shoot the fruit'?" offered Lapinette. Red Rabbit nodded. "They're here!" whispered the Wabbit. He was about to shout when Lapinette put a paw to her lips for silence. Nodding, he pulled a small bottle of prosecco from his fur, opened it and sprinkled it around. "Emergency Beacon," he whispered.

Friday, October 02, 2015

6. Skratch, Jenny and Wabbit Plan B

It had been a quiet night in the little town. But a radio crackled and that was all it took. A squadron of the Wabbit's private guard poured from the sky casting shadows that looked like giant locusts. Lapinette's personal guards - Fitzy, Mitzy and Tipsy - checked weapons and looked around in a hostile fashion. "Gosh," said Mitzy. "Fiddlesticks," said Fitzy. Tipsy said something unmentionable and swayed alarmingly. "I have a lock on their coordinates," said Skratch the Cat. "Distance?" asked Jenny. "Ten klicks," said Skratch, "but the facility is below ground." "Sheeps' shibblets, we need ropes," said Mitzy and she tore several rectangular strips from her frock. "The squadron has ropes," smiled Jenny. Skratch growled. "A coded message from the Wabbit said there were more than a thousand red rabbits kidnapped and held in a dark place." Jenny looked sceptical but Skratch nodded. "It was written on the back of a betting slip, crumpled and thrown on the sidewalk." Jenny waved her hook and sighed. "Did this message say who did the dirty deed?" "Something about the Paws of Darkness," said Skratch. "Ah!" said Jenny. "What kind of Ah?" answered Skratch. "It's an organisation," said Jenny. Skratch looked puzzled "Not real paws then?" "They're real enough." said Jenny. "Those whom the Paws touch are forever in bondage." "Son of a Sausage!" gasped Fitzy. "Double deep fry them for their trouble," snapped Mitzy. Tipsy spat out a series of expletives that made Jenny's fur stand on end.  Skratch looked first at Mitzy, then Fitzy, Finally his eyes lingered on Tipsy and he purred. "You three are going in first."

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

5. The Wabbit in the Lair of the Paws

"Whoah!" yelled the Wabbit as he grabbed what he could. "Yikes!" shouted Lapinette. Lapinette had trained at the Marinsky Ballet and had no trouble with a foothold. But she'd also seen the dank shape of evil paws and didn't like the cut of their jib one bit.  Magic Red Rabbit balanced precariously on a strut and peered down.  A row of eyes peered back. "There they are," he cried. "There are all the red rabbits." The hall of struts darkened and a voice boomed out. "Now you're trapped with the rest. You'll be here until the end of time." The Wabbit shook his head and looked up. "This isn't Amtrak! Get us off the rails and release our friends." Suddenly the framework sagged and the Wabbit looked down. A pit of spikes pointed back so he held on tight. Lapinette whispered. "Do you have a plan?" "I have a Plan B," said the Wabbit, "so what time is it?" The voice boomed from the heights of the framework. "It's later than you think, rancid rabbits."  "That's good," whispered the Wabbit to Lapinette, "help is already on its way." "What shall we do in the meantime?" asked Lapinette. "Insult them back," suggested the Wabbit. Lapinette thought for a moment then glanced up. "Your paws need pruning." Magic red rabbit joined in the fray. "Sore hocks, sore hocks!" "You've all got the monkey pox," yelled the Wabbit. It was as if an earthquake struck. The building shook and the framework with it. "We'll make you wish you'd never been born!" boomed the voice. "That's nothing new," yelled the Wabbit. And he checked the time ...
[sore hocks: ulcerative pododermatitis is a condition in rabbits usually affecting feet.]

Monday, September 28, 2015

4. The Wabbit in the Hall of Darkness

In the blast wave that came with the howl, the Wabbit did something special. He murmured something no-one could hear and his blue glasses lit with an incandescent glow. A scene emerged that was far different from the space they'd occupied. "The Hall of Darkness!" gasped the red rabbit. "I couldn't be bothered to knock," shrugged the Wabbit. The magic red rabbit stared at the door at the end of the Hall and gasped. "This is the stuff of fable." Lapinette smiled. "The Wabbit's fable manners are far from perfect." Together they hopped forward but the closer they got, the louder the howling became. It was a combination of malice and menace that chilled the air to ice. "Air conditioning?" quipped the Wabbit. A voice boomed through the pillars. "We can smell you, rabbits. Come no further." The Wabbit's glasses glowed intensely and warmed the chill. "Release the red rabbits and their songs," he yelled. Stone and plaster fell from the roof and crashed to the floor. "Puny creatures," boomed the voice. "Give us the red rabbit and we'll let you go." The Wabbit's 28 teeth gleamed like swords. "Open the door or we'll open it ourselves." "How will you do that?" sneered the voice. The Wabbit delved into his fur, grasped an object and shouted with all his might. "This will take the door from it's hinges and you with it." In the silence that followed, a series of clicks sounded like thunder. The door swung open. "Explosives?" asked Lapinette. "Swiss army knife," said the Wabbit.

Friday, September 25, 2015

3. The Wabbit in the Paws of Darkness.

With the Magic Red Rabbit in tow, they set out in pursuit of the Paws of Darkness. Shadows loomed from everywhere but the Wabbit stared remorselessly forward as they hopped. "They appear without warning like footpads in the night," said the red rabbit. "When they strike, there is no more light." "We'll see them first," growled the Wabbit. "No-one ever has," sighed the red rabbit. "I know how," said the Wabbit. The red rabbit glanced at Lapinette and she spoke in a reassuring voice. "You need to trust the Wabbit." The red rabbit glanced back to the Wabbit and the Wabbit spoke cheerfully. "We need to sing." Lapinette nodded. "Do you know any songs?" The red rabbit shook his head. "The Paws of Darkness took all our songs and hid them in a cave." "We'll make one up," said the Wabbit. "I'll start." The Wabbit began to sing in a sonorous tone that bounced from the alley walls. "Wha' saw the Paws of Darkness? Wha' saw them run away?"  Lapinette joined in. "Wha' saw the Paws of Darkness? Hunt them down and make 'em pay!" "I like that," said the Magic Red Rabbit. "Your turn," said the Wabbit. The red rabbit sang in a squeaky voice. "We'll pursue the Paws of Darkness, pursue them 'til their tired and grey. We will smite the Paws of Darkness. We'll defeat them come what may." "That's the spirit," said the Wabbit. But it was then that they heard it. A banshee howl that came from nowhere and split the night in two. "Good grief!" muttered the Wabbit.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

2. The Wabbit - Source of the Squeak

The squeak was hard to follow but gradually the darkness of the outskirts gave way to a plaza. Yet as light unfolded so did the deafening sound of splashing water. "It’s only a stone fish," said Lapinette. The fountain was extremely loud. “A bone dish,” muttered the Wabbit, “no problem then.” He hopped closer to the gaping mouth of the big fish and noticed the rider seemed to have a pistol. Then he hopped closer because he'd caught a flash of a fishy tongue. "A fish has no tongue," said Lapinette. "This one has," replied the Wabbit. Lapinette sighed. "Try talking to it." "OK," shrugged the Wabbit and he called into the fish mouth. "I'm just a tourist." He saw a flash of red so he added an explanation. "Just passing through your little town!" The Wabbit waited for a small red creature to emerge and after a while it spoke. "Show me your paws." The Wabbit held up both paws. "Brown paws are good," said the small red rabbit, "black paws are bad." The Wabbit thought if he waited, he might get an explanation. "The Paws of Darkness destroyed us all," said the rabbit. "I am the last of the Magic Red Rabbits - and forever doomed to be pursued." Lapinette turned. "Maybe you could you could use a helping paw?" The Magic Red Rabbit squeaked softly. "How can you possibly help me?" The Wabbit's ears quivered in such a manner that light gusts scattered water to and fro. Lapinette knew he was annoyed so she was unsurprised when the Wabbit's 28 teeth flashed like neon. "We will pursue your pursuer." The Magic Rabbit shivered and squeaked. "Abandon hope ..."

Monday, September 21, 2015

1.The Wabbit and the Moonlit Landing

With all the stealth that its diesel engine could muster, the Lepus crept in to a small bay near Marina di Modica and lay still. A casual moon beamed quietly on two figures as they waded ashore. The Wabbit cursed silently as a chunk of driftwood bit a paw and Lapinette cast an eye along the beach. "Not much here." The Wabbit widened his view but only saw provisional shapes. "They don't advertise." The thrum from the Lepus died. "Jenny's finished with engines," murmured Lapinette. "Eight bells and all's well," said the Wabbit. Lapinette's Snazer whined like a hundred mosquitoes. The Wabbit's Snazer had three main settings - confound, astonish and blow away - but Lapinette had developed another. He recognised the overwhelm setting and nodded. "I'm uncertain what the Paws of Darkness look like." "Gloomy?" suggested Lapinette. The Wabbit pricked up his ears and listened. "I can hear them." Lapinette knew better than to question the Wabbit's logic. She hopped out of the water and her ears swung right then left. "I can hear something else." The Wabbit waited while Lapinette made a judgement. "Something squeaky that way ran." "Did it have a colour? asked the Wabbit. "I couldn't hear its colour," answered Lapinette. High on the mast, the skull and crossbones snapped and crackled in the windless air. A hot chill rippled through the Wabbit's fur and he shouldered his Snazer. "Let's hop to the grid coordinates." Behind, the moon and the Lepus shimmered and disappeared as the night swallowed them both.

Friday, September 11, 2015

The Wabbit at the Adventure Caffè

They met at the Safe Adventure Caffè and despite the fuzzy warmth of the dining room, their mood was sombre. Skratch the Cat knew he was expected to ask the question so he did. "What was that for an epic adventure?" "Dangerous and uncertain," frowned Lapinette. "Like life," observed Wabsworth. The Wabbit had been waiting. "I simply cannot instruct you to be on this next mission. I need volunteers." "I think there's a queue," said Skratch. The Wabbit managed a half smile while Lapinette spoke softly. "Where love is concerned, it's not a matter of volunteering." They listened to plates and cutlery rattling in the kitchens and the Wabbit sniffed. But food aromas failed to mask the scent of menace. "So who's on board this mystery train?" Wabsworth took a list from his fur. "Everyone we have." "I told you so," said Skratch. The Wabbit nodded but it was a question. "Intel?" "Slight," said Wabsworth. "Cloaking technology?" asked the Wabbit. "Purely optical, but in place," replied Wabsworth. "Location?" asked the Wabbit. "Hypothetical," said Wabsworth. The Wabbit sighed. "It'll have to do."  Wabsworth grinned. "We have isotope signatures from the Murmurants." The Wabbit thought long and hard. "We will appear as tourists." Wabsworth searched for a camera. Skratch guffawed and looked aimlessly around. Lapinette fidgeted for a map and drawled, "Kin you point me to the centre of town?"

Wednesday, September 09, 2015

15. The Wabbit : Reflectance of Light

If the Wabbit knew one thing, he knew about light. And intelligence suggested the Murmurants were crazy about pyramid tea bags. So he glided into the interrogation corridor on invisible leaves. The Murmurants tried to take up his colour but the light was average and they felt extreme discomfort. The Wabbit's eyes flashed with sudden brightness. "I don't care about you. Tell me of your technology." Murmurants writhed in the average light. "We can't!" The Wabbit's eyes flashed again and his ears swayed. "Can't or won't?" Grey tone drained from a Murmurant. "It's called furtive fur." Light from the Wabbit fell with an average edge. "How?" he snapped.  A Murmurant sagged. "With a quantum honeycomb lattice." The Wabbit's eyes grew grey until they almost vanished. "Aaagh," cried a Murmurant. "His light has no direction. I can't get a fix." "Details now!" snapped the Wabbit. "The light bends towards us, then we reflect it back," gasped a Murmurant. "Our fur is made of quantum dots. Where the light goes, we go." The Wabbit smiled. "OK.  Now you're free to go." "Go where?" trembled a Murmurant. "The Canteen," shrugged the Wabbit, "for light refreshments." As they turned to go, the Wabbit yelled. "One more thing!" They shivered in the grip of the Wabbit's stare. "Who do you work for?" The Murmurants shuddered. "They call them The Paws of Darkness ..."

Monday, September 07, 2015

14. The Wabbit's Lucky Fireteam

"I need to capture some Murmurants," said the Wabbit. Wabsworth's eyes scoured the rooftops and he waited. "I need them in reasonably good shape," added the Wabbit. Wabsworth was the Wabbit's android double, but much had passed under the bridge since he was made. So his question was more of a statement. "You want their technology?" "Can you tweak it?" asked the Wabbit. Wabsworth pointed his snazer gun at a window. "I can. But I could use some time and luck." Khargoosh took in his half reflection in a the caffè glass. "You can't escape luck," he muttered in Arabic. The Wabbit laughed. "Then time is our only problem." Lapinette stared into the distance. The city was quietly waiting with not a soul around to keep it company. No trams, no buses, no smell of coffee. Lapinette's snazer suddenly whined as it charged. "I saw movement." Khargoosh screwed up his eyes and peered past Lapinette. "I can see shapes. They're moving like they're injured." The whine from Wabsworth's snazer pierced the summer air and he turned. "Perhaps someone gave them a kicking." The Wabbit kept his eyes forward and powered his snazer to maximum. "Then surely ... they require assistance." Lapinette slipped her edged weapon from a back pocket. "Let's take them to a place of safety and look after them." "Lucky rabbits," said Khargoosh.

Friday, September 04, 2015

13. The Wabbit marshals the Troops

The Wabbit knew that Wabbit Con was out of control. Certainly the team could hear sporadic small arms fire in the distance as rival factions warred. "It's time," said the Wabbit, "to put a stop to this." With breathtaking speed, four hundred rabbits loped through the streets. At 150 hops per minute, the sound of the Wabbit's elite guard was deafening. Specialist units broke away and fire teams poured through side streets in pursuit of trouble. "I need intel," said Lapinette. The Wabbit had to shout. The Murmurants are sponsored by rabbit pure-breed supremacists called BLU." "Never heard of them," shouted Lapinette. The Wabbit shook his head. "Suddenly they had resources. They came looking for us." Wabsworth yelled across. "BLU is using the Murmurants to discredit us. It calls us the Jambalaya." The Wabbit scowled. He slid a magazine into his automatic and yelled. "We need to take them in." Lapinette placed a paw on her favourite edged weapon. "Any ideas?" "Our agent, Major Spitlove, found their weakness," said the Wabbit. "They'll do anything for teabags," "Pyramid teabags," shouted Wabsworth. "They say they're the purest." The Wabbit checked his bandolier. "That's how they set the Comic Con bomb. They used a vast array of LED tea lights." Being a rabbit, Lapinette was unable to spit. But she made a valiant attempt and grimaced. "Ruffians!"

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

12. Tipsy and the Zui Quan Approach

Round the corner, Tipsy was waiting. When her radio made the faintest crackle, she took a sip from her glass and lurched. "Hello boys." She staggered to the right, then the left, then stood where she'd been before. Her eyes swirled as she swayed and for a moment she seemed to trip and fall - but she was still on her feet. Her paw clutched her glass tightly and she held it up. "There's a lovely little caffè across the street," she murmured. "Won't someone buy me an ickle dwink?" The Murmurants shifted uneasily. "Go round her," said one. Another tried to move past but she staggered in his path. Every time they made a move, Tipsy was there. A chorus of annoyance echoed round the concourse as the Murmurants shared a secret signal and started to draw on the colours and shapes of the scene. Yet the more they tried to alter themselves, the more Tipsy staggered. No matter what they did, they just couldn't get a fix on the drunken rabbit and the strain was showing. So they gathered together for strength and tried harder. It all happened as they were mid way into a solid transition. Tipsy's jump was sudden. A giant foot slammed forward and a neck cracked like rotten wood. Her leg swept round in a ragged arc. Heads bounced along the concourse and rolled to a stop. It was over so quickly that Tipsy shrugged and hopped forward across the street. "I'll buy my own drink," she grunted.
[Zui quan (Chinese: 醉拳) is Drunken Kung Fu. It's the general name for all styles of Chinese martial arts that imitate a drunkard.]

Monday, August 31, 2015

11. The Wabbit and the Special Ticket

The Wabbit had information from somewhere, so the team followed him to a small arena. It was full of what looked like Murmurants - although it was hard to be certain. They seemed to glimmer in the light and change costumes - then disappear and reappear. But they had a voice. "Impostors!" shouted the crowd. "And you're not the real Wabbit. Your ears aren't right." The Wabbit hopped forward. "I might be an impostor," he yelled. "But you might just be unlucky and I'm the real deal." The crowd murmured threateningly as the Wabbit held up a card. "This is printed with explosive ink and it could blow us all to Kingdom Come." A Murmurant dressed as Lapinette nudged another. "That's got to be him, so let's get out!" A trickle of Murmurants quietly left, followed by others. "So if you're feeling lucky," continued the Wabbit, "you could hang around and see what transpires." More Murmurants left. "On the other paw," continued the Wabbit, "this could be an ordinary ticket that admits the bearer to all exhibits, functions and hospitality." The Wabbit's bared his teeth. "... in which case I'm going to raffle it. Who'll be the first to test the ticket?" More Murmurants made their way to the exits until only one figure remained. "Perhaps you, Major Spitlove?" grinned the Wabbit. The Wabbit's double agent grinned back. "Was that a trick, Commander?" The Wabbit flicked a nail lightly across the card and dropped it. As it fell, it began to glow and they all started to run.

Friday, August 28, 2015

10. The Wabbit and the Worthless Idol

The team made its way out of the Giant Wabbit. But at every corner the Wabbit tucked something into niches, crevices, fissures and crannies. Wabsworth nudged Skratch the Cat. "When we hit the street, get ready to run!" "Run!" yelled the Wabbit. Wabsworth's foot ached due to his recently installed pain subroutine - but he scampered across the concourse with everyone else. Lapinette heard the tiniest of cracks. There was another crack. And another. Then very slowly from the bottom upwards, the Giant Wabbit disintegrated and gently collapsed into a pile of fragments. A mushroom cloud of fine dust cloaked the Giant Wabbit's ears. "Detestable, worthless idol," muttered the Wabbit. Lapinette was the first to stop and she slowly turned to gaze. "How did you do that?" The Wabbit was pleased Lapinette hadn't turned into a pillar of salt. "With Cracksmellite," he said, "totally safe for restrictive demolition." "Where did you find it?" asked Wabsworth. "Bengaluru," shrugged the Wabbit, "by mail." Wabsworth sighed. "Wabbit, is there anything you can't get?" Skratch looked at the heap of fragments and smiled for a long time. "What the Wabbit can't get, I will." The Wabbit's 28 teeth suddenly flashed. "So get me a packet of cinnamon Tic Tacs."