Thursday, July 28, 2022

2. The Wabbit and the Deserted Desert

The throb of a biplane's engines cut into the summer air and before long the Wabbit and Lapinette took off in Susan and flew north. Susan had brought Wabsworth along for his android knowledge - since he'd been forever complaining about not appearing in an adventure. But as they flew further things began to get drier. By the time they were over Piedmont, the landscape was unrecognisable. The air was like a thousand hairdryers. Susan skimmed the desert sand. Only a few scrubby plants remained in what had been lush fields and pasture. "Can your sensors detect any water, Susan?" asked the Wabbit. "Hardly any," said Susan. Lapinette had sharper eyes than most and she looked out. "Over there!" "Over where? asked the Wabbit. He was just being annoying. She pointed. "Blind as a bat," she muttered under her breath. The Wabbit grinned and twisted the joystick. Susan wheeled to port. "I saw a camel over there!" joked the Wabbit. "As it happens, I did see a camel over there," said Lapinette. Wabsworth chimed in "It's probably got the hump." "One hump or two?" said Susan. They laughed and laughed. But the landscape became progressively drier. "Where's that water?" asked the Wabbit. "Evaporating as we speak," said Lapinette. "No visual bearings now," said Susan, "just desert." The Wabbit gripped the joystick between his paws and flailed his paws. "I'd like a nice dessert." Wabsworth looked down. The arid air was bad for his fur. "My sense of humour sub routine has deserted me." Lapinette held her paw aloft. "I see a volume of ice and think I can see the Ice Mice." Wabsworth scowled. "I hate these pesky rodents."

[Background picture:  Art Tower ]

Wednesday, July 27, 2022

1. The Wabbit and the Free Water

The cleaning wagon made a whooshing noise and the Wabbit turned. There was a free water fountain where Rome provided pure water for citizens. It was near St Peter's rail station - and there the Wabbit often stood to watch the trains go by. He paused on the sidewalk with his bottle. It was seriously hot, and humidity soaked his coat. He could have switched on the air conditioning unit that he kept in his fur - but he wanted to feel the heat like everyone else. He watched the wagon go through its regular cleaning motions and he felt pleased that it was there. People were messy and the Wabbit greatly disapproved of litter. Travellers came and went, although there were fewer than there used to be. The Wabbit wondered where the line went. He'd investigated and it was rather easy to look up on a map. But every time he did, the line disappeared into tunnels and he would give up. The Wabbit thought he'd leave it to chance to find out. The question of water remained. It had been a long time since it rained, and the river looked very low. Back in Turin, the Po was as low as could be. Probably he could wade across. That was something that couldn't be left to chance. The Ice Mice crossed his mind. They were always messing with the weather and the Wabbit had been forced to deal with them on several occasions. He made a mental note. < Check out Ice Mice >. He forced himself to stop wondering about things. Lapinette often said it was bad for him and probably it was. It was then that he heard a shout and he swivelled his eyes ... 

Friday, July 22, 2022

The Wabbit at his Adventure Caffè

The team met at a Caffè they didn't know. Lapinette was in ebullient mood. She flew through the door and jumped in the air with delight. "What was that for a sort of Adventure?" she cried. The Wabbit looked bemused. Skratch answered immediately. "High tech narrative world making," he meaowed. "The references to Westworld were well placed to exploit the world-within-a-world approach." The Wabbit smiled. "You go too far Skratch. It was just a bit of fun." Wabsworth rapped on the table. "Let's have some order here. It was in fact a reflexive world embedded in worldly experience." Skratch let out a hiss that was close to a shriek. "It was a paradoxical transgression between the world of the telling and that of the told." Lapinette squealed. "Oooh! Gerard Genette and his extra diegetic narrator intruding into the diegetic universe!" The Wabbit nodded. "Metalepsis if you like." Lapinette clapped her paws together. "Oh, that's far too technical. I really enjoyed the story. It was great fun to be in." Wabsworth seemed pained. "It's been quite a while since I was in a story." Skratch nodded. "Me too." It was the Wabbit's turn to clap his paws - which he did twice, sharply. "I can guarantee you'll be in the next one." He paused. "Always supposing you buy me a drink." "What would you like, Wabbit?" said Skratch. "And you too, Lovely Lapinette? "I'd like something really cold," said the Wabbit. "So would I," said Lapinette. Skratch raised his paw. "Prosecco all round!" The robotic voice of the waiter sounded. "That-is-all-we-have."

Wednesday, July 20, 2022

9. The Wabbits come home to Rome

Pacchero scooped up the Wabbit and Lapinette and flew through time to deposit them back where they'd come from. When they lurched from Pacchero's capacious girth, they saw he'd landed beside a caricature of the Pope. The Wabbit smiled. he knew Pacchero was playing a final joke. "What's this? A refugee from that Banksy exhibition?" asked Lapinette. The Wabbit laughed and laughed and waved heartily. "It's St Peter the Roman who will preside over the last judgement." Lapinette waved too. "Rome under heavy manners?" she asked, "I didn't say it was that bad." Pacchero trembled slightly. "Your description of Rome sounded like the end of the line. So I brought you to this quiet spot to contemplate the future." Pacchero went on. "He will pasture his sheep in many tribulations and lay waste the seven hills of Rome." The Wabbit smiled and shook his head. "Much too apocalyptic for me." Lapinette was thoughtful and changed the subject. "What are you going to do now Pacchero? Pasta World doesn't seem to be working out for you." Pacchero laughed. "I'm thinking of a new venture. The great Pasta Trail. A Pasta path leads round the coast and takes you past all the great Italian seascapes." The Wabbit dissolved into laughter. "You'll start with Ponzi." Lapinette put her paws on her hips. "You mean Ponza with its wonderful history." The Wabbit doubled up. "No. I meant Ponzi, for money making fun." "Ponzi bought a macaroni factory you know," said Lapinette. Pacchero trembled. "What happened to it?" "His management pasta way," quipped the Wabbit.

Monday, July 18, 2022

8. The Wabbit in Old Rome World

No longer in Pasta World, they'd crossed into Roman World and taken the pasta with them. "What the binky is going on?" shouted the Wabbit. "You're not supposed to be here," yelled a Roman soldier. "This is Roman World. Get out and take that pasta with you. We haven't invented it yet." The farfalle swarmed all around the soldiers. Blood spurted right and left but it was fake. Radiatori crawled around the scene getting in the way. Lapinette grimaced and wiped the spatters from her frock. She examined them, then sniffed them. "This blood is pasta sauce." The Wabbit was furious. "This whole thing is bananas," he yelled. Lapinette was horrified. "Don't mention bananas, that's tempting fate." The Roman soldiers stood stiffly to attention. "We just don't appreciate this. Rectify it immediately and begone." The Wabbit grunted. "This is all Pacchero's fault." Lapinette dragged herself from under a mountain of pasta. "I lost track of him. Where is he?" Just then a voice boomed out. "Don't worry I've got everything under control. I'm bringing you back." The Wabbit's voice was icy. "Bringing us back where?" Pacchero's voice boomed again. "Where you first started." He paused. "Where did you start? Was it Calypso World?" The Wabbit lost his temper. "It was Via Giulia in Rome," he snapped. "Rome when?" asked Pacchero. "Rome now," shrugged the Wabbit. "Rome in the 21st Century," explained Lapinette. "You know. Buses, taxis, tourists, hustle, bustle, double parking." Pacchero considered. "And just remind me - where was that again?" 

Friday, July 15, 2022

7. The Wabbit and the Big Heat

They ran down the tracks of the Control Room until the tunnel exit became a spiral. The Farfalla wasn't going to give up and he charged at the Wabbit and Lapinette. They continued to retreat but the Wabbit grabbed a couple of fire hoses from the wall and tossed one at Lapinette. Then they hosed the farfalla for all they were worth. But the Wabbit had something else in mind. With an industrial heater he kept in his fur he began to heat the water until it reached boiling point. The farfalla was tough and resisted but couldn't do anything about the temperature. It began to get soft and as the boiling water poured over it, it emitted a terrible hissing. The Wabbit increased the temperature. The farfalla was in the middle of a hurricane of scalding water. They had the upper paw now and the Wabbit decreased the water flow. The farfalla was extremely limp and fell to the ground, flopping around like a jelly fish. "I think that takes care of that," he said. Lapinette nodded and put down her fire hose. "I can't help feeling sorry for it." But the floundering gave way to twitching. The twitching gave way to spasms. Suddenly the serrated edges of the farfalla sprouted like the teeth of the hydra. They waved menacingly and started towards the Wabbit. "Any ideas?" said Lapinette. Only one," replied the Wabbit. Together they turned tail and ran down into the spiral. But the spiral began to spin faster and faster to a blur. When it stopped, they found themselves in another phantasmagorical pasta world ..

Monday, July 11, 2022

6. The Wabbit's Control Room Skirmish

Pacchero shot along the control room tracks and screeched to a halt. The place was deserted. There were pictures on the monitors but no one sat at any chairs. Lapinette and the Wabbit disembarked and looked around. Nothing. Nothing except the whirring of wings. Suddenly the farfalle were on them. They came at them in a lightning raid - rushing and swooping and pouncing then swooping again. The Wabbit and Lapinette had no hesitation in pulling out automatics and they fired burst after burst. The effort opened Lapinette's wound and she bled profusely over Pacchero - who shuddered and sat very still. If he'd had eyes he would have covered them. "Tell me when it's all over," he muttered. Lapinette managed to clip a farfalla but that didn't stop it. It merely wheeled about and nose-dived again. "What to do about them?" shouted Lapinette, "Can you get to the pasta control panels?" The Wabbit searched in his fur for a spare magazine. "I'm rather busy," he growled. But he moved backwards nonetheless. Lapinette laid down covering fire but more farfalle were coming. The Wabbit kept firing too but moving backward played havoc with his aim. He flailed with his paws and managed to hit one between the wings. It flew erratically into the tunnel and disappeared. "Gotcha," he yelled. He was nearly at the control desk and he looked at the picture of the pasta ocean. "I'll never eat fusilli again," he groaned. "You don't eat it anyway," shouted Lapinette." The Wabbit scowled and grunted. "I'll make an exception."

Saturday, July 09, 2022

5. The Wabbit & Lapinette in the Pasta Sea

Pacchero yawed and spilled Lapinette and the Wabbit into a strange pasta sea, composed of fusilli-infested reginette. It rose and fell rhythmically just like an ocean. The reginette was sharp and the fusilli snatched at their faces. The Wabbit struck out regardless but made little headway against the reginette which threatened to drown him. Lapinette clutched onto the Wabbit - still nursing an injured paw. Blood stained the waves pink. "Cling on," yelled the Wabbit. "I don't like the look of these creatures," shouted Lapinette. "Everything's gone rogue," exclaimed the Wabbit, "The whole place is a disaster." The breakers made a woozy sound as they crashed on the beach. Lapinette disappeared beneath them for an instant but the Wabbit hauled her up. She coughed and spluttered as pasta got up her nose. Pacchero tried to right himself and the Wabbit made for the safety of their craft, dragging Lapinette behind. "Pacchero is our only hope," shouted the Wabbit. Lapinette kicked her feet for extra propulsion. A fusillo was right behind her, attracted by the threshing. It was slow but deadly and its mouth chomped relentlessly. A kick landed on its teeth and Lapinette cried out in satisfaction. "Take that for your trouble, fusillo." Pacchero called out. "This way. Over here." He righted himself and bobbed up and down on the waves. The Wabbit's paw found a grip on the edge of Pacchero's pasta body. Then he and Lapinette hauled themselves on board. "I'm headed for the control room," yelled Pacchero. "What's there?" asked the Wabbit. Lapinette gritted her teeth. "Lasagne with lasers!" 

Thursday, July 07, 2022

4. The Wabbit and the Rabid Radiatori

Pacchero stopped over a lovely garden. The Wabbit and Lapinette looked over the edge. "This is Radiatori Land," said Pacchero. Lapinette pointed. "Oh look, there's pasta creatures moving round. They must be little radiators." She was delighted. "They look like slugs," muttered the Wabbit. "Don't be boring," snapped Lapinette. She leaned out further. Pacchero shuddered. He seemed to be having stability problems. "Just contacting computer control," he spluttered. "They'll have me sorted out in an instant." Lapinette and the Wabbit slid down further. Then with a yell Lapinette lost her grip and plunged towards the ground. The Wabbit seized her by the frock. But he was slipping too. A Radiatore jumped at Lapinette's paw and bit it. Blood spurted. "Yaagh that hurt!" shouted Lapinette. She yelled to the Wabbit. "Get me out of here!" The Wabbit still had her frock by the hem and he hung on and pulled it. Pacchero was aghast. "This never happens," he gasped, "We have too many failsafes! You can't get hurt in here." The Wabbit pulled himself back on board with Lapinette's dress bunched around his legs. "Your fails aren't safe enough," he growled. The Radiatore stuttered. "Boy boy boy have have we got got a v v v acation for you you you." The Wabbit groped for his automatic. But Pacchero was ready to take off. Lapinette clambered to her feet and spoke to the Radiatore. "You bit me." The Radiatore jumped up and just missed Lapinette. "I'll bit bit bit you again." "You talk too much," shouted Lapinette. "Make me shut up!" yelled the Radiatore. Pacchero started to spin - and they were gone.

Monday, July 04, 2022

3. The Wabbit at the Farfalle Corral

When Pacchero stopped, it was by a church and the sun was baking hot. Lapinette and the Wabbit hopped out on the steps, surrounded by a whizzing and a whirring of wings. "Welcome to Farfalle World!" said Pacchero. Lapinette expressed delight and jumped up and down with excitement. The Wabbit looked sceptical. "Are you sure this is safe?" Pacchero nodded. "Safe as a sardine," yelled Pacchero, "Everything in Pasta World is totally secure." He laughed and laughed. A farfalla brushed against the Wabbit's ears, then settled on his shoulders. The Wabbit whacked it off. "They're a bit big for my liking." Lapinette paid no attention. She jumped and stretched and tried to touch the farfalle. They whirled around her head and made small screechy sounds. Pacchero rocked back and forth. "Everything is computer controlled from our Pasta Centre, a state-of-the-art pasta installation on the outskirts of Rome." Lapinette frolicked around, delighted. The Wabbit skulked about in a bad mood. "You're not enjoying yourself," said Lapinette. "I have trust issues," replied the Wabbit. He pondered. "It's all too good to be true. I'm not putting any faith in someone's remote computer." "You mean that's not run by you," said Lapinette. "Yes," admitted the Wabbit. He nodded vigorously to himself but was interrupted. "All aboard for our next stop," shouted Pacchero. Lapinette bounced towards Pacchero followed by a grumbling Wabbit. "This new destination will amaze and astonish you," yelled Pacchero. "I'd rather have a tuna sandwich," sulked the Wabbit.

Saturday, July 02, 2022

2. The Wabbit and the way to Pasta World

It was certainly an amazing sight. The Wabbit had never seen a piece of pasta that big. He stepped inside and made his way from one end to the other. He looked all around. It was huge. The pasta shape began to shake and then it spoke. "Welcome to Pasta World. I promise you an experience you'll ever forget." The Wabbit thought he was hearing things. So he continued exploring. "Pasta stands above the rest," said the Pasta with pride. The Wabbit knew the pasta shape. It was called Pacchero and something else he couldn't quite recall. "The Gods made Pasta," said the Pasta. The Wabbit swore the pasta nodded. He fished in his fur for his radio and called Lapinette. "Come straight away!" said the Wabbit. "You won't want to miss this." The Pasta started again. "Mama Mia, that's a spicy pasta!" it gurgled. "I heard that," said Lapinette and I'm on my way." "Hurry, hurry, hurry," said the Pasta. "Pasta World awaits." The Wabbit started to laugh. "This is great. Do be quick." The walkie talkie crackled and faded. "Schiaffoni!" exclaimed the Wabbit. Pacchero meant a friendly slap on the back and schiaffoni meant the same - but harder. "Pasta World!" yelled the pasta, "Where pasta is a slap on the back!" The Pasta started to rock back and forward. The Wabbit saw Lapinette dart round a corner. "Jump on," shouted the Wabbit. "Jump on, we're off." It began to roll. "Live without limits!" yelled the Pasta. "Discover your Calling!" Lapinette dived on and they were off ...