BUBBLE GUM CARD Ep. 3.1415
A Nasty Rumor of the Knight Sabers
BUBBLE GUM CARD Ep. 3.1415
The Dark Chocolate Phoenix Saga With Sprinkles
The space station esploded into a brilliant fireball behind the KnightStar. The retreating Knight Sabre shuttlecraft attempted to drop beneath the explosion and debris on an emergency reentry vector, jinking slightly with the OMS thrusters to avoid larger chunks of debris.
Large bits of the former GENOM weapons platform still found the shuttle, however, and large chunks of the ship's upper radiation shielding and maneuvering systems were improbably knocked away, leaving the forward cockpit exposed to the radiation of the lower Van Allen belt just below while leaving the crew compartment behind completely safe.
"Well, there went the shielding," Priss said, not having read the previous paragraph. "What do we do now?"
"We go back in the crew compartment," Sylia said, having kept track in the script. "The shielding should be quite adequate there."
"Doesn't someone have to steer this thing?" Linna asked in order to advance the plot.
"Hm. Well, that's what Mackie's for," Sylia shrugged.
"What?!?" Mackie gasped. "You're just gonna let me fry out here?"
"Serves you right for peeping on your own sister," Sylia allowed herself a small grin. "Maybe dying a horrible painful death from radiation poisoning will teach you not to be a pervert."
"No," Nene said, "I'll do it."
"You'll do what?" Priss asked.
"I'll fly the ship down," she said. "My hard suit should protect me from the radiation."
"You've never flown so much as a kite in your life," Sylia gasped.
"Don't argue, don't argue!" Mackie said. "Here's the stick, those fire the rockets, been nice knowing you!" he gasped as he rushed into the crew compartment before anyone could voice another objection.
"Well," Linna said, "any other ideas?"
"None here," Priss shrugged. "Boss?"
"I admit I have no other alternatives." Leaning forward, she kissed Nene passionately, bringing the redhead sputtering and coughing to attention.
"What was that for?" she gasped.
"Well, it says here in the script that the leader kisses the Martyr Girl goodbye."
"Let me see that script!" Nene scanned through the script angrily, then flipped back to the cover. "What the hell? This is the script from the original X-Men story!" she grumbled. She withdrew a different script from her hardsuit, grumbling, "Here, use -this- one."
"Oh," Sylia blushed. "Well, sorry," she said. "Although I must confess it -was- rather pleasant..."
"HEY!" Priss shouted. "What about us?"
"Shh!" Sylia gasped. "That's only in Bubble Gum Pink, Sweetling!"
"NO!" Priss shouted. "I mean, shouldn't we be in the crew compartment by now?"
"Oh. Right." Sylia, Priss and Linna all scrambled into the compartment. "Bye, now," Sylia waved, and the doors slid shut.
"Cool," Nene said, sliding into the pilot's seat. "Now, how do you fly one of these things?"
The KnightStar waddled through the Van Allen belt, thoroughly frying the lone occupant of the control cabin. Nene had managed to steer around the decrepit Mir station, through the framework of Space Station Freedom, and once around the Moon just to prove how ludicrous the idea of her driving anything bigger than her motor scooter was.
Sweat dripped down her softsuit, as the cabin temperature rose higher and her radiation count went past the lethal level into the Jello Brand Instant Pudding range. Her eyes could no longer focus on the controls, and for some strange reason she wanted to go to a disco and dance to old Bee Gees songs.
It says something about Nene's piloting skill that the ship flew more smoothly with her hands trembling and useless than with her in control.
As her eyesight began to darken for the dramatically appropriate last time, a flash of light appeared beside her in the cabin. A little flaming parakeet waddled up onto the console and chirped, "Well, you sure are in a bad way, aren't you?"
"Who are you?" Nene asked.
"You haven't heard of me? I'm the Phoenix, embodiment of the second most powerful force in this universe, inferior only to Ken'ichi Sonoda himself!"
"No, I've heard of you," Nene shrugged. "It's just in the script."
"Oh." The parakeet-Phoenix paused to preen its beak before continuing, "Anyway, I'd say you need some help."
"Who asked you?" Nene asked.
"Don't interrupt," the Phoenix said. "Here's the deal. I seal you up in a magic pod which will heal your injuries without a trace of cancer or mutation or anything and dump you in Tokyo Bay. Then I take your form and memories and play at being you until I go horribly insane and destroy your pathetic little world. Deal?"
"Now wait a minute," Nene gasped.
"I knew you'd understand," the parakeet nodded, and suddenly a new Nene, in a brand-new Marvel-trademarked green hardsuit with a golden sash on it, appeared before her. "Now if you'll excuse me, hon, you're in the way."
"But-" Nene barely got the interjection begun before she was cut off by her abrupt disappearance, which of course will distract anyone from what they were saying before.
"Now then," Phoenix-Nene giggled, "how do you fly one of these things?"
A giant flaming bird screeched across the skies of Mega-Tokyo, at the center of which rode the scarred, charred, and highly value-depreciated KnightStar. With a scream of apparent pain, it descended into the heart of the Canyons, finally crashing to earth in the absolute worst part of town.
The flaming bird shook its head, looked around it in apparent disgust, and flapped its crimson wings, lifting the shuttle in its claws and carrying it over to a higher-rent district, finally dumping the shuttle in front of a Baskin-Robbins. Nodding with satisfaction, the bird vanished, and with an anticlimactic thunk the hull of the shuttle collapsed, revealing the Knight Sabers strapped into their seats, heads bowed in fervent prayer.
Priss paused from her prayer, which sounded like "(lordifyougetme outtathisoneIpromiseIwon'tusebadlanguageandI'llchangemysingingcostumeandI won'tmakefunofNenenomatterwhatandI'llneverspeedagainaslongasIliveohlord pleasegetmeouttahere)" and looked around. "Um, people?" she muttered to nobody in particular.
"Not now," Linna gasped, "I'm trying to make peace with my ancestors."
"We're down," Priss said.
"Are we?" Sylia opened her own eyes and looked around. "Oh... so we are," she said. "Oh good."
Mackie said to nobody in particular, "Um, Lord, if you could see fit to give me just a -little- leeway, I mean is one nudie magazine a month too much to ask..."
"We're down, pervert," Priss barked, unbuckling her seatbelt. "You can quit making deals with the Almighty now."
"I hope Nene's okay," Linna said.
"So do I, but I am not exactly confident," Sylia said. "After all, hard radiation can't have been good for the girl."
"ACTUALLY," a loud and overly perky voice shouted, "I FEEL GREAT!"
The remaining bulkhead ripped down the middle, admitting a helmetless Nene in brand-new armor. "Wow, Nene," Priss gasped, "what heppened to you?"
"WELL," Nene shouted, "I WAS ABOUT TO KEEL OVER AND DIE WHEN THIS THING CALLED THE PHOENIX MERGED WITH ME AND NOW I'M ALL-POWERFUL AND COSMIC AND STUFF! ISN'T IT SO COOL?"
"Ah.... yeah," Priss shrugged.
"I would certainly like to examine you as soon as possible," Sylia said thoughtfully. "You seem to have changed radically."
"NAH, I'M STILL THE SAME NICE TOTALLY SANE AND NOT MEGALOMANIACAL AND CUTE CUTE CUTE NENE!" Nene-Phoenix smiled. "SO, WHO WANTS ICE CREAM?"
"(Yeah, -I'm- reassurred,)" Priss whispered.
Suddenly, Priss flew up from her feet and slammed into the bulkhead behind her. "ARE YOU CALLING ME CRAZY?" Nene-Phoenix growled.
"Who? You? Crazy? Hahahaha!" Priss grinned, trying to ignore the invisible grip pinning her to the wall. "That's silly! You're the sanest person I know!"
"GOOD," Nene-Phoenix grinned, "NOW, LET'S GO EAT ICE CREAM!"
"YUM!" Nene smiled, paying no attention to the open stares of the other Knight Sabres, or the stares of other patrons staring at the Knight Sabres. "I WANT MORE!" she shouted, pounding the table and rattling the dozens of bulk ice cream cartons piled around their table.
"I'm sorry, ma'am," the manager of the Baskin-Robbins gasped, "but we're all out. You've eaten everything we have."
"I WON'T STAND FOR THIS!" Nene-Phoenix growled. Flames licked up around her, resembling an irate parakeet for a moment before expanding into a more graceful phoenix shape.
"Now, Nene," Sylia said quietly, "don't you think it would be a good idea to calm down and go get some rest?"
"FOOL! I NO LONGER REQUIRE SLEEP!" Nene floated above the floor, spreading her arms and flexing them. "I AM THE ALL-POWERFUL DARK NENE! MY WILL IS LAW! ALL THOSE WHO OPPOSE MY ALMIGHTY CUTENESS SHALL BE DESTROYED! AND *I* *WANT* *MORE* ***ICE CREAM!!!!!***" With this shout, she raised an arm and blew out the window of the ice cream shop, slowly floating out into the street.
The Knight Sabers leaped out after her. "We have to stop her!" Linna gasped.
"It's too late! She's lost control!" Priss shrugged, shivering with distaste at the blatantly bad Marvel dialogue.
Sylia ran after the slow-moving Phoenix, shouting, "Nene! Please, stop it! Stop it now!"
The all-powerful creature paid her no attention. Instead, she reached out and grabbed a bystander in her flaming claw and shouted, "ICE CREAM! BRING ME ICE CREAM!!"
The bystander, not having been paid to speak in this spamfic, promptly fainted.
"USELESS," Nene-Phoenix mumbled, discarding the limp body. She glanced around, looking for alternative sources of sweets- and her eyes found the towering hulk that was the GENOM Tower.
"YES!!" Nene-Phoenix shouted. "THEY WILL HAVE ICE CREAM!" With a loud cry, the Phoenix spread its wings and streaked away towards the immense monolith. The other Knight Sabres ran after her, but stopped when it became apparent how quickly the firebird was moving.
"Well, what now?" Priss said, disgusted.
Sylia stepped out to the curb and shouted, "TAXI!"
"CHAIRMAN QUINCY!" Dark Nene shouted, floating in on her infernal wings to the executive office of the GENOM lord. "I DEMAND YOUR ICE CREAM NOW!"
Quincy, who had been in mid-plot with his executive hatchet woman Madigan, paused and turned to the flaming hardsuited redhead and said, "Ah. You make the second god to grace this office so far. I am honored."
"REALLY?" Dark Nene grinned.
"Really," Quincy smiled. "You know, someone with your power, your skill, your unremitting cuteness, you could do very well for yourself in GENOM..."
"Mr. Chairman, sir," Madigan warned, "I think she's already been turned to the Dark Side..."
"ONLY IF IT'S A CHOCOLATE SUNDAE. WITH LOTS OF SPRINKLES!" Dark Nene smiled, licking her lips. "NOW, GIMME ICE CREAM!"
"Certainly," Quincy smiled. "Would you like anything else?"
"ANYTHING ELSE?" Dark Nene thought for a moment, smiling. "WHY, THAT'S RIGHT! I CAN HAVE CAKE, AND CANDY, AND COKES AND MARSHMALLOW KRISPY TREATS AND ALL SORTS OF SWEET GOODIES! GIVE THEM TO ME!"
"KNIGHT SABRES- SANJO!" Sylia's voice cut through the tension like something really sharp cutting something really easy to cut.
"If we're speaking English, why are you giving us orders in Japanese?" Priss asked.
"Never mind!" Sylia shouted. "Nene- you have to fight it! Don't let the Phoenix devour you. And other Marvel phrases!"
"TOO LATE!" Dark Nene smiled. "I AM DARK NENE THE ALL-POWERFUL... WAIT, I DID THIS SPEECH ALREADY. ANYWAY, ALL THE SWEETS IN MEGA-TOKYO ARE MINE- EVEN THE MILKY WAY BARS THE CHAIRMAN HAS IN HIS DESK!"
"uh-oh," Quincy murmured, sensing his negotiating position take a sudden downward turn.
"Um, Sylia," Linna asked, "how are we supposed to fight her?"
"I have no idea," Sylia shrugged. "Maybe a miracle will happen."
Suddenly, a young woman in what appeared to be a fancy white lab coat ran in carrying a long mallet. The black hair jumbled messily around her face framed a set of blue tatoos whose description is so detailed and irritating that it'll be easier for me to just say that it's Skuld, and that she swung her mallet Bjarrnil on high and hit Dark Nene square atop the head.
Dark Nene collapsed to the ground and promptly turned into a Bug, who was squashed a moment later by the Goddess. "There," she said, "that takes care of her." She checked a small note pad and muttered, "One deus ex machina plot resolution, delivered on schedule. There!" Smiling and waving at the Knight Sabres, she grinned, "Sorry for the trouble! Bye-bye!" and ran back out of the office.
The Knight Sabres gaped at the spot where Dark Nene had been a moment before, looked at each other, looked at a shell-shocked Quincy and Madigan. FInally, Sylia muttered, "Ah, pardon us," and the Knight Sabres returned from whence they came, wherever that was.
Quincy just stared in shock out the broken windows, and in the silence Madigan asked:
"So, sir... may I have one of those candy bars?"
"Nene's dead," Priss sighed, stripping off her hardsuit listlessly.
"Yes," Sylia nodded, "I suppose she must be."
"I'm not dead," Nene said.
"I'll miss her," Linna said. "She was so perky and cheerful..."
"I said, I'm not dead. I'm really feeling much better," Nene said.
"She was really something else," Priss agreed. "Won't be the same without her."
"I said, I'M NOT DEAD!!"
The Knight Sabers and Mackie all turned to see Nene, in the ruins of her old hardsuit and with a bad sunburn, standing in the doorway. "Nene!" Sylia gasped. "What happened?"
"Well, this weirdo parakeet calling itself a phoenix locked me in a pod and dropped me in the bay. I waited for a bit while it got rid of all the radiation poisoning and then I broke out and swam to shore and here I am."
"Oh, good!" Priss smiled. "Now we can have the scheduled ironic happy ending!"
"Do we have to?" Mackie grumbled.
"Yes, we do," Sylia nodded, "it's expected of wacky spamfics like this."
"Oh, all right," Mackie sulked. "Say the line, Nene."
"Okay," Nene smiled innocently and chirped, "So, can we go get some ice cream?"
On cue and in perfect choreography, all the others fainted.
* * * * *
With absolutely NO respect to Chris Claremont
Kris Overstreet, April 1997
Kris Overstreet, will write for food...
"The universe is already mad. Everything else is redundant."
Webmaster for Antarctic Press http://www.antarctic-press.com/
--- Londo Mollari, BABYLON 5
(Any opinions expressed in this post are not those of Antarctic Press.)