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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/campfires/item_id/1733352-Christmas-Battle
by Twiga
Rated: 18+ · Campfire Creative · Fiction · Animal · #1733352
The Manimals face new foes this Christmas!
[Introduction] The Kids had been rescued. Freed from the grasp of Bishop James decied it was time to indocterate them in the secret ways of the Manimals

"But we want to go home!" Whined Sarah the Vampire Bat

"Yeah we wanna go home!" Said Hadrian the Timberwolf

"I'm afraid you can never go home again." James said "The Agents will be serching for you so you have to keep hidden."

The Young Manimals began to burst into tears
Jim, Bill, Bob and Jordan recived news from an Egyptian Cobra Manimal that James was all right and that everything was OK.

Meanwhile at Ichabod's house the pink and purple cat-girl Marzipan was busy listening to the other three toys, Rag Doll, Mr. Cat and Miss Moppet about the dangerous Elf waiting to insnare Ichabod.

Marzipan now that she was 'semi-organic' experianced her first instance of hunger and looked in the fridge for something to eat.

She found a gallon of milk...And began to chug it...The Door opened Ichabod walked in

"Um...Hi?" Ichabod said nervously observing the Pink and Purple cat creature helping herself to his food "Do I know you?"

Marzipan wiped milk off her kitty mouth (And wiped it off her blue sweater) and said

"Hi handsome."
The sight of this provoked a response as old as time in Ichabod, a response that required no translation, as anyone could understand what it meant, no matter what language they spoke.

"AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!"

*****

Meanwhile, a group of Chinese teenagers were playing Mah Jong when a scream caused their pices to fall.

"Sounds like a girl entered some boy's house," the one said as he picked the pieces back up.

"Sounded like an American to me," said the second. "The scream had that accent you know."

"You won't catch me making that scream," said a third. "Now, let's get back to the game. I think it's my turn."
Meanwhile James was leading the Cublings (The Pet name he had givin the kids)

"OK." James said "We'll make camp here."

"Hang on..." Sarah said "I hear something."

"With ears like that I'm not surprised...What do you hear?"

"I hear a girl's voice...." Sarah said "She is saying 'Don't be afraid I'm friendly...want me to make you a bowl of soup?'
"Interesting," James said as he rubbed his chin. "Perhaps someone else escaped and came across some people."

"Wouldn't we have known about it?" Tipp asked. "I mean, wouldn't we have seen them?"

"You only saw a small portion of that place," James said with a shudder. "I just hope you didn't have to kill anyone, or watch anyone die in front of your eyes."
Sarah sat down on a rock and thought about her fate...A few days ago she had been anticpating Christmas in Mexico City with her grandmother (She was half-Hispanic) Now she was doomed to live and die as a freak of nature.


James thought for a second..."Hang on." He said "Controll Alt Delete."

Just as he had said that Sarah's body began to morph...She began to take on the form of a Human girl

"Maybe you can go back to your familes after all." James said

But she didn't morph back completly...Her Bat ears and tail remained her like the Bat-Equivilent of an Anime Catgirl.

James...Had to think for a second "I'm not sure about this." He said "This could mean you're a fluke geneticly or that they rearranged the formuala so no one can turn completly human therefore will be easier to find."

Hadrian understood what James meant and wanted to test it "Try me!" He said "I want to see if it's true for me too!"
"I'd better not," James said, shaking his head. "They might of added something else which would activate if you are in a human form."

"Like what?" Hadrian asked.

"Tracking device, or even a controler. Wouldn't be the first time they did that."

"Those bastards!" Hadrian said. "I wish they all were dead!"

Sarah started to cry.

"Hey!" James said. "Keep it together, you two. Now is not the time to fall apart emotionally. We have to keep moving and make plans."

"Looks like no Santa Claus this year," Tipp said.

Sarah wiped her eyes. "I wonder what my Granny in Mexico is doing right now. Probably baking sugar cookies for me... *sob* ..."
Meanwhile at Ichabod's house, Ichabod had fainted at the sight of this strange home invader.

Marzipan rabbed his cheeks and brought him a hot water bottle...He began to stir.

"Before you say anything." Marzipan said "No I'm not a montser crawled out from the sewers to stalk you..." He paused "In actuallity I'm your soulmate!"

"Soul mate?" Ichabod said raising an eyebrow not believing a word of it.

"Well...Yes!" Marzipan said
"This has got to be a crazy dream," Ichabod said. "First talking dolls now this. What's next? A sing and dancing mouse with its own amusement park?"
Marzipan storked his cheek and purred.

"You have nothing to fear." She said "I've known you my whole life long."

"How could that possibly be?" Ichabod asked

"I know you like cheese omlets with herbs for breakfast..." She said leaning in close "And I know for a fact you got sick after eating Edward Nygma's potato salad."
At this, Ichabod ran out of the house, screaming. I have a stalker! he thought.I better get someplace she won't find me!

Marzipan ran after him. "Wait! Wait! I'm sorry! Maybe I told you too quickly! Slow down! We need to talk!"

Ichabod pumped his long legs and skinny arms making good speed. It was all too much. What a Christmas vacation this was turning out to be. Suddenly he screeched to a stop. Marzipan was standing right in front of him.

"How did you DO that?" Ichabod said. "I thought you were behind me."

"Will you just calm down and listen to me for a minute," Marzipan said.
"What do you want from me?" Ichabod asked

"I told you." Marzipan said "I want to be your soulmate."

"But you're...a cat."

Marzipan gave a quick little peck on the lips...Ichabod blushed as he felt a strange warmph flow through him

"That...Felt so strange." He whispered

"Come on." She said "I'll fix you up a cup of tea."

Ichabod followed reluctently still kind of dazed from the kiss "I wonder how Bill and Jim and the others are doing..." He said to himself

Meanwhile Jim came home after a long night he could smell apple pie baking in the oven.

"Hello there." Said his Mother Violet Buckwheat "I'm baking this pie as a treat for you after this long year of hard work."
"Why thanks mom," Jim said as he ran up and gave her a kiss on the cheak. "It's been a while since you made one."

Meanwhile, a certain elf was checking out the latest fashions.

If I'm going to have my mate, she thought. I best blend in, so that I can watch him, and then see about befriending him.

In Mexico, Sarah's Granny was checking the mail. "Another stinkin' day and steel no Chreestmas card! Why can she not send me a card? No sugar cookies for her if I do not get a card!"

Granny kicked the stove. When she was furious she often cooked something to relieve her tensions. "But it weel not be sugar cookies," she mumbled under her breath.


Meanwhile Jim was eating his second slice of hot apple pie. "This is delicious, Mom!"

She patted his shoulder. "I love cooking good food for my little Jimmy."

"I'm not so little anymore, Mom. I have a girlfriend now."

His Mom put her hands over her ears. "Don't tell me that!" Then she laughed. "Sorry. To me you will always be Little Jimmy."
(Geez Steve! Could you be any more stereotypical in your potrayal of Mexicans?)

Jim belched a little and now felt ready to go to bed...He yawned and stretched "Good night Mom." He said

"Good night Jimmy." She said

Bill was snug in his bed that night but...He had a dream

He dreamed about a scientist in an underground chamber...He was pouring and mixing chemicals

"Those fools who laughed at me will be up to their necks in lava or hailstones...Or whatever form the next evolutionary cataclysum will occur in!"

He drank a test tube full of some greenish slime and turned into...A big mudskipper!

"Aw man!" He said "A mudskipper! I wanted to be a tiger...or a wolf...Or...Oh well no use complaining about it now...I must spread the Manimal formula across the nation to save humanity from ultimate analation..Or my name isn't Clyde Noosehanger!"
Meanwhile, James, who was wearing a Middle-Eastern-like outfit, compleate with face mask, was walking down the Greeting Card section of the local Supermarket. He was looking for some cheap Christmas Cards, so that the kids could at least wish their favorite relative happy holidays.

However, the one store employee standing behind him was making things difficult.

"I thought folks like you worshipped Allah and didn't believe in Christmas," the man said.

"That dosen't mean that I don't have friends, and distant cousins, who do worship the holiday," James said in a friendly manner as he picked up a card. He hated these sorts of people, but now wasn't the the time, or place, to deal with the little turd.

"Well I say you ain't getting them," the man said, taking the card out of James's hand, and ripping it up. "Whatcha gonna do now? Throw a little Ji-had? I'm a US Patriot."

James looked at the man and growled. "You're no Patriot," he said. "I served ten years in the Green Barets, got shot twice, stabbed five times, and I still have shrapnel from an RPG lodged in my skull. I also earned three Purple Hearts, and the Bronze Star. I keep those home with my kid's wife, while he is out there, fighting for this country, getting his own ass shot at and stabbed. All so you can stand here and claim to be a patriot. You, you're nothing but a pest who doesn't even understand the cost!"

At this, James just stormed out of the place, out of the place, not even noticing the person who had observed the scene, one of Bishop's men. The agent had noticed James's tail moving around under his outfit.
The Man began to talk on his walkie talkie, but he felt a claw on the back of his neck.

"Don't do it...If you want to live."

"Clyde!" The Man said "How did you get here?!"

"I've been traveling across this great nation." The Mudskipper said "Spreading Holday Joy the only way I know how."

"Oh my God!" The Man said "You mean to say you've been..."

"Shush..." Clyde said "I have just the thing for you."

He injected a needle into the Man's neck...The Man began to shimmy and shake...He face grew a muzzle, his feet grew hooves, black and white fur sprouted all over his body he turned into a holstein bull!

James meanwhile was walking back to where he left the kids...They were sitting around a pool of water...and eating a cherry pie?

"Where did you get that pie?" James asked most confused

"A Lady came by in a big truck and dumped them over by that big rock." Tipp said gesturing to a rock shaped like a wolf head "Said something about 'worst Christmas ever' and 'Wolves can eat her boyfriend's cruddy pies.'
"I guess I can relate to that," James said as he walked over to the rock. "Maybe there's a meat pie here for me. Could use something to cheer me up."

"Why? What happened?" Tipp asked.

"Some pain-in-the-ass, piece-of-shit pretend-patriot got my blood-pressure up when he made an ass of himself when he saw my outfit," James said with a low growl. "He's lucky I didn't tear his throat out."

"Okay," Tipp said, as he and the other kids backed away.

James noticed and said, "Aww, you kids don't have to worry. Besides, I just found a meat pie. That's going to put me in a real good mood."

"Are we going to spend Christmas in the mall?" Sarah asked.

"No, of course not," James said. But he was thinking: Now where in the heck ARE we going to spend Christmas?
Jim woke up in the middle of the night...He had strange dreams of toys coming to life..."Boy that was one scary dream..."He said "But I guess it can't be real..." He chuckled to himself

"Oh no?" Came a soothing voice that sounded like Angelina Jolie.

Jim's squirrel ears and tail popped up "Who...Who said that?" He asked

Down from a shelf hopped a stuffed purple unicorn with a pink horn and white mane she was called Purple Rose (Mostly because Jim was slightly better at naming his toys than Ichabod was)

"Hello Jim." Purple Rose said "Are you afraid of me?"

"Should I be?" Jim asked being slightly more open minded than Ithe ever skeptical Ichabod was

"You know when you were really little we spoke to each other." The Unicorn said

"We did?" Jim asked confused

"Oh yes." Purple Rose said "Whenever you were sad or lonely or just not feeling well I was there for you...You forgot about it as soon as you hit puberty as most kids do."
"I suppose I could buy that," Jim said. "Of course, you could be some robot sent to spy on me."

"That's right, Jim," Purple Rose said in her soothing voice. "I could be... but I'm not. You don't believe I am a robot, do you, Jim?"

"Uh... no... I guess not." Jim was feeling sleepy. That Angelina Jolie voice was so calming.

"Because I'm not a robot, Jim. And especially not a hypnotic robot. You're feeling sleepy, aren't you?"

"Yes..." Jim mumbled. He was barely able to keep his eyes open.

"Close your eyes, Jim, and just listen to the sound of my voice..."
Once Jim was asleep Purple Rose shook her head and nickered

"A robot? Who does he think I am? Didn't he ever head the Veleteen Rabbit?"

She went over to a Walkie-talkie Jim kept on his shelf "This is Purple Rose calling Mr. Cat, Come in Mr. Cat!"

"Mr Cat speaking!" Came a voice that sound like Louis Armstrong

"How are things on your side?" The Unicorn asked

"Not too good." Mr. Cat said "Ichabod drank some Tea and felt better and went to bed hoping that when this over it will all be a dream...I hate to be the one to tell him tommorow it isn't a dream...He still has a Cat-Girl for a girlfriend."

"Where is she now?" Purple Rose asked

"Asleep on the couch." Mr. Cat said "We gave her a special ability...She can turn into an ordanary non-morphic cat whenever the boy's parents are around."

"I guess that's better than having a cat-girl squater in the house" The Unicorn said "Good bye...I love you my Feline Friend."
"Of course, the trick is to convince the boy's parents to let him keep the 'friendly stray cat'," said Rag Doll. "As well as Ichabod himself."

"Some minor potions in their morning beverages ought to do the trick," said Mr. Cat.

"Isn't that breaking the rules a bit?" Miss Moppet asked.

"A minor infraction, but it's not like it will hurt us in the long run," Mr. Cat said with a wave of his hand. "Besides, the potion can wear off as they get used to her, and they'll never need to know that they ever needed encuragement to let the 'cat' stay."

Meanwhile, James and the kids were sitting on a bench at the mall. James was eating a meat pie and drinking sweet tea. The kids all had blueberry pies and cokes. It was getting late; the mall would be closing soon.

"James?" Tipp said.

James waved him quiet. "I know what you're going to say: Where are we going to sleep tonight?"

"Yeah, something like that."

"Don't worry. I almost have a plan. I just need to think it through."

"OK, James. I'm really tired."

"I know. We'll be able to sleep soon."
Clyde the Mudskipper had been watching he knew of a place

"Excuse me Sir." Came a slippery slimey voice

"What do you want Clyde?" James asked

"I know of a ruined castle in the forest not far from here." He said "I fixed it up with electricity, heating...Hot and cold running water..."

"Wow a castle!" Said Beth the Jackal-Girl "Can we go there? Please?"

Meanwhile Marzipan woke up...She checked the clock..It was two in the morning and she was hungry

"I'll see what's in the fride." She said

She looked in the fridge there was a bowl of mashed potatoes, some leftover tuna salad enough to make three sandwiches...and a leftover sandwich Jonathan had brought home from a diner

"Hmmm" Marzi said but then the light turned on...her body shrank to that of a normal cat
"Honey," said a woman's voice. "Either Ichabod forgot to close the fridge door, or we have an intruder."

Marzipan (now in a cat form) quickly slipped into the refrigerator behind the Velveeta and the pickles. Then Ichabod's mom closed the refrigerator door!

"I don't know who left that fridge door open, probably Ichabod, but I don't want to wake him. I'll give him a good talk about it tomorrow. That boy wastes electricity all the time." Then Ichabod's mom turned out the lights and left the room.

Marzipan shivered and tried to push open the fridge door but she couldn't. She was trapped! And she was getting very cold.
Mr. Cat quickly opened the refrigerator door and let Marzipan out
"You have to be careful around others," he whispered. "Some people can't know about you, at least not much, and not yet."

"Well how was I supposed to know that?" Marzipan hissed. "I didn't know that I'd change into a normal cat or get stuck in the fridge."

"Just be careful," Mr Cat said, "And remember, anything can happen at any time."

"But that's impossible to prepare for!" Marzipan protested.

"I'll admit it's not easy. Just stay alert. If others can survive under these conditions then so can you."
Marzipan sighed...She wanted to be next to Ichabod...She crept on all four legs to his room

Ichabod was there...Fast asleep and lying on his stomach.

Marzipan mewed with delight...She jumped up on the found the softest place to sleep on (Which happened to be Ichabod's tush) And curled up and went to sleep.

Meanwhile James and the Cublings followed Clyde to the ruined castle...James still was not sure if they could trust the old mudskipper
"Would I happen to know you?" he asked. "I've never forgotten the face of anyone I've seen."

"I wouldn't know," Clyde said, keeping his face away from the wolf.

"Your eyes seem familiar," James said. "Like I said, I've never forgotten a face, especially someone I've tried to kill, or someone who tried to kill me."

"I wouldn't know about that," Clyde said as he touch his left cheek, which had a faint scar. "Are you saying you don't trust me?"

"I'd sooner trust Bishop to lie to my face, as opposed to some stranger's claims of helpfulness."

"Aw, now that's hurtfull. Don't you have a heart?"

"Sometimes it's better to be a heartless bastard than a trusting fool."

Clyde shrugged his shoulders. "Fools rush in where angels fear to tread."

James looked puzzled. "I don't see how that fits here."

"Weren't we talking about fools?"

"I think you're trying to throw me off the track," James said. "You're worried that I will remember who you are."

"I'm not worried!" Clyde said. "Here's the castle. It's a safe place to sleep. Stay up all night and keep watch if you're so danged suspicious."

"Maybe I will," James said. "You cublings rustle up some piles of leaves so you will have soft beds to sleep on."
Clyde knew James was on to him.

Clyde was a scientist, he was a transhumanist he believed humanity must change in order to survive.

In his earlier years he had dedicated to the study of a new virus that was deleping...Clyde wasn't planning on the virus getting loose.

Now Clyde elieved that only by mutating peole into Manimal could people be saved from the plaugue

Meanwhile Ichabod woke up, he felt a weight on his tush there was a cat on his backside!

'It wasn't a drwam.'
Of course, it could of been one, part way Ichabod thought. This cat could of jumped in front of me and I just freaked out.

Marzipan cat was sleeping so soundly that when she had a little dream (while lying curled up on Ichabod's tush) she didn't know she was sinking her claws into Ichabod's butt.

"YOWWW!" Ichabod yelled and leaped out of bed throwing off the covers and also a very surprised Marzipan cat who went flying across the room.

Ichabod rubbed his butt and said, "What just happened here?"
Marzipan regained her humanoid anthropomorphic form.

"Merry Christmas." She purred looking at him with sleepy brown eyes with flecks of gold

"It...It wasn't a dream?" Ichabod asked as he rubbed his butt

Marzipan crawled over to Ichabod and kissed his foot, Ichabod just stared in shocked amazement, when she started to kiss his toes it tickled to much and Ichabod pulled his foot away

"You...You really just want to be my girlfriend?" he asked

Meanwhile at the Ruined Castle Tipp found a table covered with the most sensuous looking food he had ever laid eyes on, he went over to the table the closest thing to him was a slice of cranberry pie.

He took a bite
It was Fantastic! There was nothing else like it! It was-

"I'd stop eating that if I were you," said James's voice.

Tipp turned his head, cranberry juice dripping down his chin.

"You're better off eating an M.R.E.," James said as rolled his eyes.

"What's an em are ee?" Tipp asked.

"Meal Ready to Eat," James said as he tossed a package at the young squirrel. "It may not taste as good as that pie you're stuffing your face with, but at least I know what's in it, unlike that pie, or any of this food on the table."

"But it taste so good!" Tipp said with a pleading look in his eyes.

"So do pufferfish, but you can't pay me enough to eat another one," James said, his eyes serious. "I ate one on a dare when I was serving a tour in Japan and the damn thing nearly killed me. It was the most delishious fish I've ever eaten, and I'll stick to plain old tuna if those were the only choices."
Tipp sat down and looked at the package in his lap

"I woudn't be that hard on the boy." Came Clyde's voice "There is noting dangerous inside the foodstuffs."

"I know you put something in them." James said

"Just some Antibiotics and Immunity boosters." Clyde said

Meanwhile Ichabod was sitting at his bed while Marzipan rubbed her face against his feet

"What is so interesting about my feet?" Ichabod asked chuckling because of the tickly sensations against his soles

"Your feet are just so interesting!" She said she planted a kiss on the sole of his foot...Ichabod chuckled again

Suddenly Marzipan's stomach growled

"You must be hungry." Ichabod said "What can I get you to eat?"

"A cucumber sandwich, a tuna fish sandwich and a bowl of mashed potatoes!" Marzipan said quickly
"I'll see what I can do," Ichabod said, running his hand through his hair. "By the way, how did you do that change from cat to, this?"

"Um, I'm not really sure," Marzipan said, as the spell used to create her prevented her from saying anything about the magic. "All that I know was that I was hungry and poof, I'd changed."

"Isn't that dangerous if you have no control over it?" Ichabod said.

"I don't know," Marzipan said. "I guess I just trust it. Let me help you prepare the food."

"OK. Did you say a cucumber sandwich? I don't think we have any cucumbers, but the tuna fish and the potatoes... no problem there!"

"YAY!" Marzipan said and Ichabod was glad that it took so little to make her happy. Sometimes he worried about his ability to make a woman happy, but Marzipan seemed to like him very much.
Ichabod thought for a moment as he got the bowl of mashed potateos out of the fridge "She seems familer...I don't know why...I can't explain it."

Meanwhile Matoaka gave Zander some scented candles for Christmas, He gave her a bouquet of pointsettias.

Little Ama got a stuffed Unicorn green colored with a blue mane and white horn
Meanwhile, a certain elf was looking at a lump of coal that was in her hand.

"How did you get in my house?" she asked.

A brief image of a man wearing red clothes flashed in her mind.

"So, I had an intruder in my home," she said, tilting her hand, and let the coal drop. "No matter. You'll help me out with my plan. Question is; Do I turn you into a Diamond for a wedding ring? Or an army of Coal Golems to do my bidding, such as getting me my Love?"

James and the cublings woke up in the old ruined castle. Overnight some snow had fallen. The cublings ran outside to play in it.

"Don't get your clothes wet!" James yelled.

Clyde chuckled. "You're like an old mother hen."

"Hopefully I'll get them to a new home soon," James said, "and I can go back to my usual lifestyle of adventuring, roughnecking, and killing bad guys."
Hadrian and Tipp wrestled in the snow...Sarah flew up to an old Oak Tree and hung down from the branches.

Meanwhile Ichabod had finished feeding Marzipan..."Is that...Quite enough?"

"Oh yes quite enough." Marzipan said with a small belch.

"Well I suppose I'll make myself breakfast." Ichabod said than he clutched his behind "Ow!" He exclaimed

"What is it?" Marzi asked

"Nothing." Ichabod said rubbing his fanny "I must have had a twitch that's all."

Then he felt anouther sting
"Um, do you have fleas?" he asked.

"No," Marzipan said, shaking her head. "At least, I don't think so."

"Well something just bit me."

"Let me look," Marzipan offered.

"You can't," Ichabod replied. "The bites were on my butt."

"I think I can stand up to the horror of looking at your butt."

"But it's my butt. I don't want you to see my butt."

"Well, you can't just accuse me of having fleas and then give me no way to disprove it. You can't see your own butt. I can see it. And I know what a flea looks like. The only logical thing to do is to let me examine your butt."

Ichabod's face turned red. "It's too embarrassing!"
Ichabod did not know it, but the stinging was from the Elf poking a voodoo doll of him with a fork..
"Um Mistress," said a low voice. "Are you sure that's how you'll get him to come to you?"

"It will work," the elf said as she looked up at the source of the voice, a birdcage. "Would you rather I use it on you?"

"No Mistress."

"Good, then shut up."
Marzipan tried to convince Ichabod to let her see his butt when Jim walked in unexpectedly.

"Um..Hi?" Jim said "Am I interupting something?"

"No you're not." Ichabod cramming two slices of bread in Marzi's mouth "What's up Jim?"

"Matoaka says she found something strange." Jim said "She said it looks like a little blue saphire shapped like a heart."
"Well let's go check it out," Ichabod said as he rushed towards the door.

"Hey, who's the girl?" Jim asked as he saw Marzipan.

"That's Marzipan," Ichabod said.

"I don't remember seeing her around before," Jim said.

"Oh, you saw her, but not as a girl."

"Oh?" Jim said. "I hope you will explain that remark later, but right now I want to show you what Matoaka found."
Meanwhile Matoaka was eximaning the mysterious blue gemstone

"Strange." She said looking at the crystal "This little stone seems to have an arua of great power irraditing from it."

"What do you think it means?" Zander asked as he cradled Little Ama on his knee.
"I know this much, it's not native to this area at any rate," Matoaka said as she looked at her husband.

"It could of come from another alien," Zander suggested. "Guy could of lost it."

"That or...."

"Or what?"

"Earth has many legends, and most legends are based in truth."

"It's so blue," Zandeer said. "Maybe it contains water magic or sky magic."

"What do you know about magic?" Matoaka asked.

"Not much. Just what I read in some stories."

"But you do know I am magical in some ways, right?"

Zander was embarrassed. "Well, I've heard you mention a few things."

"Zander! Did you think I was making stuff up?"

"No, not exactly. You have to understand that people are very scientific on Ava. Thinking about magic does not come easy to an Avan like me."
Matoaka listed, there seemed to be a slight vibrating sound from the jewel.

"How Strange and errie..." She said to herself

"We're here!" Said Bill and Bob entering "What is it you wanted us to look at?" Bob asked

"Take a look at this!" Matoaka said holding the jewel in front of them

"Cool." Bob said "Can I hold it?"

"If you promise not to break it." Matoaka said passing it to Bob

Suddenly and without warning the color changed from deepest blue to darkest red, it became burning hot! Bob was juggling it to make sure not to drop it.

Finally Matoaka snatched it back and it returned to deepest blue

"OK." Bob said blowing on his hands "That was weird."

"That was weird." Zander said putting Ama in her crib "I was the first to notice it, it didn't burn me when I touched it."
"Could be some sort of security feature," Bill suggested. Then he felt a familiar vibration in his pockets. "Crazy cell phone." He pulled it out and saw that the number was blocked. "I wonder who it could be," he said as he opened it up. "Hello?"

"Merry Christmas kid," said a familiar voice.

"James! Where in Hell have you been?"

"Busy. Tell Matoaka I save a couple of kids. Oh, and ask Zander to look up a fella called Clyde Noosehanger. Got to go. Bye." *Click!*

"So who was it?" Matoaka asked.

"It was James," Bill said as he looked at the unicorn. "He said he saved some kids, and he wants to know about some Clyde guy."

"Clyde who?"

"Um, Nosehair, or something."

"Noosehanger?"

"That could be it."

"Do you know him?" Zander asked.

"Name's familiar. Can't remember where though."
"I am vaugely aware of a Clyde Noosehanger." Matoaka said putting the Saphire on the table "As I recall he was a scientist studying germ warfare...They say he went underground when one of his superbugs got loose."

Just then Belladonna Starchild walked right it, stratling everyone

"Bell?" Matoaka asked "What brings you here?"

"I left a sweater here three weeks ago and I was waiting for an oppritune moment to retern to the surface to retreve it." The White Dragon said "After all I can't shapeshift to human form like you can."

"True." Matoaka said "True."

Bell notced the Stone on the table "Where did you find that?" She asked "It's very beautiful."

"I wouldn't touch it..." Bob began to say

But as soon as Bell's claw touched it, it turned bright red...Then it floated in the air! It floated up and landed over her heart! Belladonna clutched her heart as if she had heartburn.

"OMG!" Matoaka said "Bell! Belladonna Starchild! Can you hear me?"

Bell opened her eyes they were glowing bright red

"The one you know as Bell is not here now." The Dragon said "There is only The She."

"The She?" Matoaka said

"The Feminine Force." The voice inside the dragon said "The Mother of all Things Female..."

"Bill." Bob said "Give me your cellphone I got to call Donatello and tell him his Girlfriend has gone all Psyco Mantis."
Meanwhile, James was busy crushing the cellphone he had.

"You're wasting money when you do that," Clyde said as the mudskipper walked up behind the wolf.

"It's a disposable one anyways," James said as he tossed the remains. "Reduces the chances of people tracing me, and tracking me down."

"Ah, but what if you needed help?" Clyde asked. "What if one of those kids was injured?"

"Simple, steal a car and kidnap a doctor."

"Wouldn't that bring the police down on you?"

"Not with the way I drive, and the doctor only needs to know what they need to do. After that, drug them and drop them off on the side of the road."

"You certainly take the direct approach to life," Clyde said.

"It's worked so far," James replied.

After a week in the ruined castle, both James and the cublings were getting tired of it. Finally James decided they had to move. "Well, Clyde," he said. "It's been fun visiting with you, but we can't stay here forever."

"Why not?" Clyde said.

"It's too quiet and the damp stone walls aren't good for the cubs."

"At least stay tonight. It's New Years Eve. We'll have a little party. I've been saving a dozen bottles of Cranberry Wine just for a special occasion."

James looked hard at Clyde. "Tell me something, Clyde. If you live in this ruined castle why don't you at least fix it up and make something nice out of it?"

"I don't actually live here," Clyde said. "But it seemed like a good place for you and the cubs to stay."

"Why are you taking so much interest in us?"

"Just being helpful. That's the holiday spirit, isn't it?"

"I guess so," James said, "But if I find out you are up to anything..." And he let his eyebrows tell Clyde how much trouble there would be.
Clyde realised the Old Wolf was on his tail...

He had wanted to study the Cublings and discover the secrets of their unique immune system!

With that done he wanted to spread Humanimal DNA across the whole USA turning people into Humanimals so they could escape the coming plague.

James looked at Clyde "You were in Germ Warefare weren't you?"

"What?" Clyde said looking nervous

"Yes..." James said "You were the scientist who created that super mutant virus..."

"I don't know what you're..."
"Oh I know who you are, you son of a bitch," James said with a growl. "You're the bastard that did THIS to me and many others. By God I ought to kill you right now."

"I wouldn't do that if I were you," Clyde said with a wicked smile. "After all, I know how to get you what you want most."

"And Just what would that be?" James asked.

"You want to be human again," Clyde chuckled. "And I can change you back into one as well."

"Nice try," James said, grabbing Clyde by the throat. "But I'm not falling for it."

"This is no trick James," Clyde said as he grabbed onto the wolf's hands. "I can make you human again. Think about it: a chance to just walk out in public, to go shopping without the need for a disguiese, visit the family."

"Can you really do that?" James asked, his eyes full of hope. To be human again had been his dream for over twenty years.

"Yes," Clyde said with a smile. "I just need you to let go of me."

"But why should I trust you," James said, and squeezed Clyde's throat even tighter.

"Because I am the only hope you've got. If you kill me there will be no one who knows how to help you."

"That's not a reason to trust you. Just because you might know how to help me doesn't mean you will actually do it."

"If you let me go then I promise I will."

"Clyde, Clyde, Clyde... Don't you know you are not the type of person whose promises can be believed? You are evil, Clyde. Just plain evil. The world would be a better place without you in it."
Clyde was getting pretty desperate

"Wait!" He said "Don't you want to hear about the coming plaugue?"


"Plangue?" James asked "What plaugue?"

"The Super Mutant virus..."
"Let me guess, it kills ten percent of people who are infected, and that reduces to point zero one percent if people take antibiotics." James said with a growl.

"No, ninety-nine percent," Clyde said with a sneer. "Fifty percent die from the plaugue itself. The rest die from secondary infections. Even a regular flu or cold could finish what the plaugeue started. However, there is a way to stop it."
"If we turn the majority of Human to Manimals, their hybrid immune systems will fight off the illness!"

"Your Mad!" James said

"No I'm just pragmatic." Clyde said

Meanwhile Belladonna Starchild had flown far away from the forest, she was possesd by The She the Mother of all things Female.

The Ninja Turtles had been called forth

"Ah Geez." Raph said "So you're saying she got all possed and now got taken for a ride?"

"Yes that is excatly what I am saying." Matoaka said

"The Question is how are we going to find her?" Donatello asked "Dragons can cover a lot of ground."

"I think I know where she is going to be." Jim said "Don't ask me how I just know."

"And what do you know?" Matoaka asked

"She's going to look for the Space Sword!" Jim said
"And where is this sword at?" Micky asked. "After all, we may need it to save Don's girlfriend."

"In a highly secure vault," Jim said. "I doubt that she'll be able to break into it."

"How impenritrable are we talking about?" Donatelo asked.

"It could withstand a nuke going off five inches from it, and everything inside would remain intact and undesturbed," Jim said as he took out a wooden sword. "It was where James trained me how to fight with swords. How he learned all those styles of swordsmanship, I'll never know. However, he tought me the basics of four or five different types, and he was going to teach me more before he left."

"What other defences are there?" Ralph asked.

"Automatic turrets, all sorts, knock-out gas, acustic chambers that amplify any sound to over two hundred decibals, and a pannel," Jim said with a chuckle. "Enter the correct code and all of the internal defences shut off, and the door to the vault will open. Enter the wrong code, you can still get in, but you will be in for a world of hurt."

"And that's it?" Ralph said.

"Not at all," Jim replied. "Those are just the primary defenses. There are also over 200 secondary defenses. There are things like darts hidden in the walls that are triggered by your footsteps; poisoned cupcakes that are still in the wrapper so it looks like no one has tampered with them; rabid bats; thin plastic laundry bags that drop down over your head and smother you; bogus Christmas trees under which there are gifts but one of them is a bomb that goes off when you unwrap the present; puppies that are really poisonous lizards wearing a puppy fur costume for a disguise; ballpoint pens that--"

"Stop!" Ralph said. "Are you going to tell me all 200? How do you remember all that?"

"It's my squirrel genes," Jim said. "Did you know a squirrel can bury 700 nuts in 700 different locations and remember where they all are buried?"

"No, I didn't know that. Well, I've got some turtle genes and they make me realize that time moves quickly. It's best not to waste too much of it or the rabbit will win."

"What rabbit?"

"Never mind. It's a a famous story among my people. I'm saying let's make plans and do what we have to do."
(It's Raph as in Raphael not RALPH!)

Now Bell had been flying for a long time she landed in front of the vault

"My Love!" The voice posseing her said "My Love Come To Me!"

"I can't." The Spirit inside the Space Sword said weakly (The Spirit was the masculine force, The Father of All Thing Male)
"And why can't you?" asked the feminane spirit asked.

"The mortal who built this place knew what he was doing," said the masculine spirit. "There is no way I can get out on my own."

"Does the mortal know who you are?"

"Unlikely, but there are other dangerous weapons in here. It seems he doesn't want anyone to take them."

"Do you know where he is?"

"Try a place called Area 51. He said something about going to rescue some kids from there."

Meanwhile, James and Clyde had made peace with each other, or at least a temporary truce. Clyde agreed not to bother them anymore in exchange for his freedom.

James was leading the cublings to Matoaka's house. "This is the best way to indoctrinate you into the secret ways of the manimals. Matoaka is a great and loving example."

But when they got to Matoaka's house James was surprised to see all the activity and meetings going on. "What's this all about?" he said.

"There is a big confrontation brewing," Raph said. "Belladonna Starchild has been possessed by She The Mother Of All Things Female. she wants to find the Space Sword. It is in a very secure vault and has been possessed by a masculine force The Father Of All Things Male."

"It sounds more like a date than a confrontation," James said.

"This is no laughing matter," Raph said. "The sword is in a vault protected in unimaginably secure ways, at least, unimaginably secure to us. Word on the street is that you know all about it."

"Hmmm..." James said.
James thought for a moment 'I wondered about that Space Sword.' He thought 'I felt a presence radiate from within it.'

Meanwhile Ichabod was walking home, he had been thinking about what he had just seen from Matoaka's house from a distance and was deep in thought.

Suddenly he felt something grab him from behind...He felt a claw sharp like a needle press against his neck

"Not a word..." The Female Voice said "Come with me..."

Ichabod could not so much as utter a squeak! He let out a sillent cry with his thoughts 'Someone help me!'

The Toys at Ichabod's house all heard his sillent cry, but Marzipan heard it most of all
"Ichabod's in trouble," she said. "We must go and help him."

"Well, we can't help him by ourselves," said Mr. Cat. "At least, not the way we currently are."

"What's on your mind?" Rag Doll asked.

"There is a potion, similar to the one we gave Marzipan, but it's much more potant."

"How much more potant?"

"It will increase ones' magic tenfold. However, there is a price."

"And just what is this price?"

"It lasts one day, after that, the user will turn into an ordinary toy, and never be able to use magic again."

"That's too much to lose," Rag Doll said. "I don't want to turn into an ordinary toy."

"But what about Ichabod?" Mr Cat said. "We can't just let him be... in trouble."

"We don't know what kind of trouble he is in," Rag Doll said. "Let's go take a look. We can do that, can't we?"

"I suppose so... but we'll be too small and fluffy to help him."

"All I'm saying is let's see what's going on first before we do anything drastic that will change our lives forever."
Marzipan thought for a moment "How about none of us take the potion." She said "I'll go on alone as I am."

"Rag Doll raized an eyebrow "You'll have probloms..." She began to warn

"Yeah I know I considered it..." Marzipan said looking away "But if we all take that potion none of us will ever become real...And that's what we all want right? To Become Real?"

"Yes." Mr. Cat said "You're right Marzipan go on alone."

With that Marzipan headed off to find Ichabod all by herself.

Meanwhile Ichabod woke up, when he woke up he was very frightened...He was wearing a red silk shirt with puffy sleeves with two ribbons flowing from each cuff and black silk trousers.

He was in a bedroom although where the bedroom was he could not say since there was no window to look out.

He looked to his left and saw a table covered with food...Feeling a pang of hunger in him he took a large red apple and bit into it
It was delicious! It was fantastic! It-

It had a worm in it.

"Yeuk!" he said, tossing it away. "Is this some sort of joke? Nice clothes but bad food?"

"Who are you calling bad?" asked the worm in a little squeaky voice.

Ichabod picked up the apple. "You're lucky I didn't bite your head off. Where am I that something as strange as a talking worm exists?"

"You're not in Kansas anymore," the worm said.

"I never was in Kansas in the first place. Shape up and tell me something or I will squash you."

"Ooooo, big man!" the worm said. "OK, I'll tell you a few things, but put me closer to your ear. I don't like to shout."
The Worm said "You're in the Fairy Castle you are now in the home of the Elf Maiden..."

Ichabod suddenly got a sinking feeling intuitivly he knew what this was about

"The Elf..." Ichabod said "She wants to marry me doesn't she?"

"That is correct." Said the Worm

Meanwhile Marzipan was running on four legs trying to follow the sound of Ichabod's telepathic cry...She saw a vortex of swirling colors in front of her...Somehow she knew if she dived into that vortex she would find Ichabod
I'll find you, she thought. If it's the last thing I do.

Meanwhile, James was heading to his place. There was no way he was going to allow a possesed dragon to ruin his home.

Marzipan dived into the vortex of swirling colors. It felt like the worst amusement park ride ever invented. When it was over she was so dizzy she couldn't stand up. And she felt like puking. "What a trip!" she said.

She looked around. She was in a room with a stone floor and stone walls and a stone ceiling. "If this isn't a castle then I will be very surprised. Now what the heck is Ichabod doing in a castle?"


Ichabod was reclining on a soft couch in the Elf Maiden's chamber. She was dropping grapes into his mouth, one by one. "Aren't those delicious?" she said in a silky voice.

"Yes, they are," Ichabod replied, "but I should warn you that diffferent fruits and vegetables sometimes have strange effects on me."

"I know that, sweet Ichabod. That's why I am feeding you. Feel anything yet?"
Ichabod thought for a moment "No.." He said

Just then he felt something go POP behind him, he looked down and saw he had a big orange cat tail!

"Oh deary dear.." The Elf said "I'll have to go get some lettuce if I want to cure you of that cat tail."

The Elf left, Ichabod noticed Marzipan

"You got to help me!" Ichabod said "You got to hide me! I'll do anything!"

"Calm down!" Marzipan said grabbing him by his shoulders

"This isn't the first tail..." Ichabod began to say "First it was the mouse tail than squirrel tail than...rabbit tail..."

The Door opened again Marzipan hid behind the sofa.

"I'm back!" The Elf said "She had a head of lettuce on a dish."
"Um, I smell a cat in here," she said.

"Well, you did just give me a cat's tail."

"That might be it. But this one smells female."

"Please don't make me female!" Ichabod joked.

The Elf giggled, but she was still suspicious and kept sniffing the air.

Ichabod ate the lettuce and his cat tail shrunk and vanished.

"Your cat tail is gone," said the Elf Maiden, "but I still smell cat!"
Marzipan did her best to turn into an ordanary cat, But it did not work...The Elf was coming closer

Marzi noticed a big red button on the wall next to her, out of desperation she pushed it.

Out of nowhere a tiny robot teleported into the room

"I am Glaxor the Room Service Robot." It said "How may I be of service?"

Thinking his hardest to stall for time Ichabod said "I'll have a Tuna Melt with Sharp Chedder and..."

"Don't you order food from him!" The Elf Maid cursed "That Robot was made by the Dwarf Kingdom!"
"Dwarf Kingdom? I didn't know that there were actual dwarves," Ichabod said. "Perhaps you ought to tell me more."

"Perhaps I should," the Elf Maiden said, "but first promise me you will not push any more buttons or touch anything unless you ask me first what it does."

"I promise," Ichabod said.

"Good. Now where would you like me to begin? When the world was born? Or when the Elves and the Dwarves first came to be? Because you know at first there were no Elves and Dwarves in the world. Not in the very beginning."

"Um... How long a story is it going to be?"
"Very long indeed..." The Elf Maiden said

Meanwhile Marzipan saw there was a trap door underneeth her feet she opened the hatch and desended.

"The story of the Elves is a story as old as the universe itself..."

Meanwhile James was having a long standoff with Bell and the Spirit who possesed her

"Do you have any idea who I am?" The Dragon asked

"I don't know." James asked "Who are you?"'

"I am the Common ansester of every living thing in the universe."

"How can you be the ansector of everyone in the universe?"
"It's complicated," the spirit said. "It's sort of like your Adam and Eve story; me and my mate were created, and we had children. However, the creator didn't make mates for our children so-"

"There was inbreeding right," James said, as he crossed his arms.

"Yes, though there wasn't any genetic problems, at least at first."

"No wonder the world is screwed up."

"Don't blame it all on that," the dragon said. "We had a lot of bad weather too."

"So what?" James said. "Even a hurricane doesn't make me lose my cool."

"But you're exceptional. Not everyone is as weather-resistant as you are."

"Well, they could certainly try to be, but I see no effort being made. The sissies around here run inside when the first drops of rain fall. They close down the city for a few snowflakes. Wimps! All of them!"

"Do you want to hear my story," the dragon said, "or rave about the weather?"

"I'm sorry. So you had children?..."


Meanwhile, Marzipan found herself descending some very old creaky wooden stairs. She hoped the Elf Maiden would not hear her. She also hoped the stairs actually led somewhere. There seemed to be a lot of them.
Marzipan found a room filled with tiny Glaxor robots

She pushed a button on one

"How may I help you Mam?" One Asked

Marzipan wondered if she could conjur a big pot of wasabi to distract the Elf Maiden
"Yes," she said. "I would like you and the other robots to run in and out of the elf's room until I say 'Marry Poppins'. Can you do that?"

"Your wish is our command."

"But not you!" Marzipan said to one of the robots. "You go find a big pot of wasabi."

"I'll try," the little robot said.

Soon Marzipan heard sounds coming from the room above her. It was the Elf Maiden yelling, "What are you robots doing loose? Get back in your holding chamber!"

Suddenly Marzipan wished she had instructed the robots not to say anything about her. She cringed as she heard the Elf Maiden ask them, "Why are you out? Who told you to come up here?"

Several tiny voices gave a perfect description of the girl downstairs.

"Oh no," Marzipan muttered.

The trapdoor opened and the Elf Maiden peeked down the stairs. "Come up here, you! I know you're down there!"

Marzipan thought she was doomed, when a Glaxor Robot pulled her trouser leg...

"Madame..Your Wasabi."

"Thanks!" Marzi said "Where'd you find it?"

"I can turn inorganic material into organic food!" The Robot said happily

"Ok..." Marzipan said feeling confused

"Come out Little Cat and I may be merciful." The Elf said

"I don't think so..." Marzi said as she took a pawful of wasabi and through it in the Elf Maid's face

"I got to get out of here!" Marzi said as she raced up the wooden stairs

Ichabod peered at the trap door entrence

Marzipan's paw grabbed his hand "Come on Ichy let's blow this mashmallow stand!"

"How are we going to do that?" Ichabod asked "I don't know where the exit is!"
"Let's jump out a window," Marzipan suggested. "We might get lucky, and land on something soft."

"Sounds like a bad idea," Ichabod groaned. "But I'd rather risk it than spend another second here."

But good luck finding a window. Hand in hand, Ichabod and Marzipan ran through the halls of the castle. Everywhere they looked was solid stone walls with the occasional door, always locked.

"We have to get near an outer wall!" Ichabod said.

"Don't look at me," Marzipan said. "I came here through a vortex of swirling colors. I have no idea where the outer walls are."

"Oh my God! Do you suppose there are no outer walls? Maybe this is a magical place trapped in a dimension of its own?"

"Don't get too mystical on me, Ichabod. We better hope this is an ordinary castle if we're going to have any chance of escape."
Ichabod and Marzipan came across a giant birdcage hanging low

"Perhaps I can help you..." A Voice said

Marzipan peeped into the birdcage and saw what looked like a white stork

"My name is Roland." The Stork said "As a child I was kidnapped by the Elves."

"Did the Elf Maid steal you to be her groom?" Ichabod asked

"No..." Roland said "She stole me mainly to be her plaything...But every once in a while an Elf must be transformed into a Bird, Beast or Insect as part of a bargain they made with the Devil at the beginning of time...They substituted me as one of there own and now I'm stuck in the form of a stork."

There was a CRASH BANG BOOM The Elf Maid was trying to find them

"Quickly!" Roland said "There is a golden key on the End Table! Open my cage and I will get you home safely!"
"What guarantee is there that you'll help us?" Matzipan asked.

"The fact that I want to get out of here."

Ichabod grabbed the key and opened the stork's cage, whereupon the stork stepped out. The stork was much bigger than Ichabod had thought.

"Grab my legs!" the stork said.

Ichabod sat on one of the stork's feet and Marzipan sat on the other. They wrapped their arms around its knees.

The stork began flapping it's wings and chanting, "Fly away! Fly away! Fly away home!"

"I think this is a magical stork," Marzipan said as a vortex of swirling colors formed and the stork entered it.
Rolland flew down to thesnow covered forest and as soon as he landed began aging rapidly

"OMG" Marzi said "WHat's happening to you?"

"I was kidnapped inthe middle ages." Rolland said weakly "As soon as I touched the soil of earth I reach my true age."
"Is there anything we can do to help you?" Ichabod asked.

"No my friend," Rolland said with a weak smile. "But at least I can die free, with the sun upon my face."

Marzipan and Ichabod stood silently by the mound of earth where they had buried Roland.

"May his soul fly free," Ichabod said.

"Amen," Marzi added.

"Now we must find our way out of this forest and the snow is beginning to fall again."

Marzipan sighed. "It's very beautiful."

"It will not seem so beautiful if we get trapped in it. Let's go."
Marzipan and Ichabod walked together sillently thinking to themselves

"You know it's funny." Ichy said "I feel like I remember you from long ago when I was a little boy..."

Marzipan gulped
"Well I'm not sure about how I came to be," Marzipan said. "I remember that I was a kitten playing with my brothers and sisters, when these men with nets came and caught us. Then there was this guy with cold hands and a poker of some sort, and then pain. Then I remember running."

"Were you an ordanary human, or were you an actual kitten?" Ichabod asked.

"Kitten, I think," Marzipan said. "I'm not sure. I might of been human. I don't know. Everything's all fuzzy. I remember sibblings, playing with them, the men with nets, the guy with cold hands and pokers, but that's it really."

Ichabod put his arm around Marzipan's shoulders. "Well, I'm glad all that's in your past and you are here with me now. We'll get through this somehow."

She smiled at him. "Thanks. I hope so."

For several hours they trudged through the snow. The forest was quiet and muffled. Big flakes of snow fell slowly from the sky.

"I smell smoke," Marzipan said.

"If we're lucky it's somebody's house and maybe they will invite us in to warm up."

"I'm not so cold."

"Well, I am!"
The Smoke came from a campfire the Cublings were sitting around

James had left them at one of the local Manimal Camps Sarah warmped her wings against the fire

"It's so cold!" She said


"You kids might want to come in." Said a female Blue Heron "They say it's going to get even colder!"
"But, I want to know where James is," Sarah said.

"Probably trying to pick a fight," the heron said. "He isn't happy unless he is in a fight."

"I hear someone walking in the woods!" Sarah said. "James! Is that you?"

Ichabod and Marzipan walked into the camp. "Hi, everybody! Can we get warm by your campfire? We're freezing."

"Sure!" Sarah said. "Why are you out walking in the woods? Did you see a wolf named James out there?"

"We didn't see anybody," Ichabod said, "except a stork named Roland."

The Blue Heron looked up. "You know Roland?"

"Well, we used to know him. He's dead now."

"Oh no!"

Marzipan slapped Ichabod's arm. "You didn't have to say it like that!"
"Roland was the lost child of my Grandfather a thousand times removed!" The Blue Heron said "He was taken from his parents and turned into a stork!"
"Well, the guy saved us," Ichabod said as he lowered his head. "However, the cost was too much for him."

"Probably went the way he wanted," the heron said with a sigh. "Our family is, or was, a military one: No Cost was too great while in the Service of King, God, Country, or helping out a couple of friends."

Marzipan smiled at the heron. "Beautifully said. Why are you guys camped here? Are you homeless?"

"Not exactly," Blue Heron said. "This is a manimal camp. James just saved a group of cublings from the bad guys and brought them here. Uh.. we have plenty of stew. Please share a bowl with us."

"Thank you!" Ichabod said. "Tramping through the snow can make a guy really hungry."
Meanwhile, James was still dealing with the spirit that had possesed Bell.

"Do you mind explaining the real reason you are here," James said. "I don't like too much religious stuff."

The white dragon, Belladonna Starchild, unfolded her wings and spread them wide. Of course, it was the spirit of She All Things Female who really did that. The spirit of She was currently possessing Bell's body. Why? To search for and find the Star Sword, which just happened to be currently possessed by the spirit of He All Things Male.

James experinced that knowledge directly in his mind. Bell did not speak, but James intuitively knew what was happening. "I don't understand my role in this," he muttered, partly to himself, but loud enough so Bell and Star Sword could hear him.

For the first time Star Sword spoke. It was mind talk, but both James and She All Things Female heard it. "You have no role in this, James. You never should have come here. I don't know what guided you here. Perhaps it is because I am in the vault that you constructed. But you must understand that it is now time for me to be set free. She All Things Female has come here in the body of Belladonna Starchild to set me free."

At this James became angry. "No, Star Sword! You have been possessed by He All Things Male! It is a trick, a monstrous trick! You will not be free! You will become the slave of either She or He! They intend to fight each other for the right to possess you!"

"But I do not feel possessed," Star Sword said. "Who is this He All Things Male of which you speak? That spirit does not possess me."

"Liar!" James yelled. "I know it is He doing the talking. Star Sword, you would never disobey any order from me. You never have before. Is that not true?"

"It is true, James," Star Sword said, "but... this time is different."

Beads of sweat dotted James brow. It was obvious that Star Sword was caught in the grip of a delusion caused by He All Things Male. And without Star Sword's power... James was uncertain that he could defeat both She and He.

He All Things Male had made it impossible for James to stop Star Sword from leaving the vault under He's influence because Belladonna's possessed body was outside the vault and Belladonna/She would fight James and drag his attention away from the vault and what He/Star Sword was doing.
"I'm going to leave." The She said into James mind

The End!

© Copyright 2010 Twiga, BIG BAD WOLF Is Thankful, Steev the Friction Wizurd, (known as GROUP).
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