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The Insane Crossover Story Chapter Four


"Is it just me, or do these woods look terribly familiar?" Tabby asked Merry Treat off-handedly as the group tromped through a forest of tall, foreboding-looking trees.
"Yeah, I don't think we're on that Naboo planet any more..." Merry Treat trailed off, and suddenly halted.
"So interesting, how we can change planets without noticing anything different," Tabby pondered aimlessly.
"Do you suppose we're... lost?" Merry Treat gulped.
"What's that? Are evil movie kings attacking?" He-Man called out.
"Oh, no, we're not being attacked," Tabby assured the group cheerfully.
Tess looked relieved at that statement, but huddled closer to Tarquin nonetheless.
"...we're just lost," Tabby continued in an equally cheerful voice.
"Lost!" Whimzee gasped.
"Meesa no be likin' this..." Jar Jar said slowly.
"Just consult my map of the universe I gave you," Orko instructed Tarquin.
"I already did," Tarquin sighed. "It doesn't say anything about woods anywhere around Naboo. I don't know how we got here."
"Spear. Row," Spearow said nervously.
The whole group gathered around Tarquin's map, which he spread out on the ground. Tabby scanned it over impatiently. "Where's Naboo? I can't even see that."
"It's right up there." Tarquin pointed towards the top of the map.
"Where? I still can't see it, Tarkie. I hate maps. You can't ever make any sense out of them..."
"Unless..." Merry Treat murmured to herself.
"I just wish L.B. was here to cart me around," Tweeg mourned. "Oh, good L.B.!"
"I betcha we took a wrong turn and wound up in these creepy woods, which are probably haunted by some--" Ursa Minor was abruptly cut off in mid-sentence.
"Oh, my stars!" Whimzee suddenly shrieked out in alarm. She had been pushed to the edge of the group while they were consulting the map, and had brushed up right against some bushes. "What is that?!" Quivering, she jumped behind Jar Jar for protection, as he happened to be standing next to her.
"What's what?!" Merry Treat rushed to the aid of her startled friend.
"Th-th-that thing in the bushes!" Whimzee timidly peeked out from behind Jar Jar, who looked very confused.
"Yousa bein' very skittish, methinks," was all he said.
"If anything dares make a sinister move towards you, I'll slash them with my sword!" He-Man said solemnly, drawing his large sword from his back.
"Oh, brother! Not this again!" Tarquin groaned and rolled his eyes.
"Row," Spearow sighed along with his friend.
"What in the world are you guys muttering about?" Tabby pushed through the bodies until she was next to Whimzee and Merry Treat. "So, what is it?"
"It looked like a... like a... big, yellow worm," Whimzee said, trembling, "with a horn on its head. Oh, dear, and I'm sure it's still there!" She covered her eyes with her hands.
Merry Treat pushed aside the leaves where Whimzee had been standing. This reminded her of the time they had encountered Grubby the Octopede... she hoped the ending of this incident would turn out the same, as well. The pony gasped in surprise when she saw what was there. It was exactly what Whimzee had described... "It's a Weedle!" she exclaimed.
"Wassa Weedle?" Jar Jar asked suddenly in a curious tone.
"It's a kind of Pokèmon," Merry Treat explained, not moving from her position. "And I think Ursa Minor was right in her theory. If we are where I think we are now, we'll be seeing a lot of strange creatures, Whimzee."
"What do you mean?" Tabby threw Merry Treat a questioning look. "This can't be..."
"It must be the Dark Forest," Merry Treat said affirmatively.
"But the Dark Forest... that's right next to Dream Valley," Tess said, confused.
"This must be a trick of the evil King Movie," He-Man declared recklessly.
"No, it's not really a farfetched idea," Merry Treat murmured, walking back to the map. "Yes, we were looking at it all wrong. I assumed we were going west. But we weren't-- we were going east, and then kind of looped downward. And so--" Merry Treat pointed to the map. "--voila, there's the Dark Forest, and here we are in it."
" ‘Dream' Valley? And yet you've never had a good dream, Tabby?" Tweeg questioned.
" ‘Tis the sad truth," Tabby nodded. "Names can be deceiving, you know."
"I knew my map wouldn't fail us!" Orko said jubilantly.
"Anyway!" Tarquin positioned himself at a good spot to view the whole expanse of the map. "We're pretty much positive we're in the Dark Forest-- and there's this path we've been following-- and if it's the path that's shown on the map, it should lead us straight into Tea Bunny Land if we keep following it," he declared, rolling the paper back up.
"Oh, that sounds like a delightful place!" Whimzee said, cheering up a bit. "I would think Tea Bunnies would be hospitable. It doesn't seem like a place that would be in the Dark Forest, though."
"We've met up with the Tea Bunnies before!" Tabby exclaimed. "They are nice little bunnies-- and as long as they serve any drinks besides tea, we should have a nice stop there."
"Yipee!" Ursa Minor cried out cheerfully. "Let's get going! I gotta see these Tea Bunnies! Is tea all they eat?"
"They have delightfully wonderful donuts and cakes and such, too," Tabby said, glancing cautiously at the baby bear.
"That's good, ‘cause I'm starving for something good to eat!" Ursa Minor shot down the path, leaving the others far behind.
"Sheesa is goin' to get into trouble if weesa don't catch up to her," Jar Jar predicted.
"You're right," Whimzee sighed. "Come on, gang. To Tea Bunny Land we go!"
* * *
Sooner than they expected, the group arrived in Tea Bunny Land. They marveled at all the quaint teacup-shaped shops, beautiful flower gardens, and the all-over pastel brilliance of the village.
"Told ya it was a nice place," Tabby bragged.
"Where do we go for food? Where do we go for food?" Ursa Minor began whining.
"Well... I've never actually been to Tea Bunny Land before," Tabby confessed. "I only met two of the bunnies. But somebody in one of these places will know where to go."
"I could go for a nice, big slice of chocolate cake myself right now!" He-Man added.
Tabby trotted up to the nearest house-- a pretty pink place that appeared to be a hat shop, according to the sign hung above the door. She knocked on the door, and it was quickly opened to reveal a pastel pink bunny who blended in nicely with her shop. There were bight pink roses on the tips of her ears, and she wore a dainty white dress patterned with pink flowers and an ornate, creamy straw hat.
"We would like to be directed to the nearest bakery in town!" He-Man boomed from behind Tabby.
The petite bunny surveyed all the creatures on her doorstep, and looked slightly surprised. "Ah... yes... the bakery. You're new to these parts?"
"Yes, we're traveling, to seek revenge on somebody," Tabby confirmed. "We're just stopping here to freshen up."
"Wonderful!" The bunny smiled. "We do love entertaining visitors so. You must be from Dream Valley, of course. Where do the rest of you hail from?"
"Oh, all sorts of places," Merry Treat said quickly. "But first, who are you?"
"I am Rose Bonnet," the bunny introduced herself. "I own and run the Just Ears Hat Shop here. However, the bakery is--"
"They don't make gold there, do they?" Tweeg asked cautiously (he didn't want anyone else to discover the ancient recipe of making gold from buttermilk).
"Oh, no!" Rose Bonnet giggled. "The bakery is just two shops down the street from here. And if you'd like to spend a night or so, there's the hotel over--"
Rose Bonnet was suddenly interrupted by a commotion outside. "My! What is that noise?" she asked in fright.
Tabby and the rest of the gang whirled around. There, just parked in the middle of the street of Tea Bunny Land, was a rather noisy and battered Desoto car with a black-and-white paint job. Several other Tea Bunnies were peering out of their shops, wondering what was going on. Everyone held their breath to see who would emerge from this unsightly vehicle.
First to leap out of the car was a brown, humanoid dog clad in a worn, gray suit complete with a spiffy hat and a not-so-spiffy tie. Next to jump out was a furry white bunny (wearing no clothes), walking upright, and with large teeth. They both struck a pose before the confused crowd.
"Well, here we are in Tea Bunny Land," the dog commented.
"The over-abundance of flowers here is shocking," the bunny agreed.
"That's because these are a simple people who have not yet realized the wonders of modern civilization-- such as free market economy, senseless violence, and corn dogs," the bunny's companion replied.
"Not to mention pollution and toxic waste," the bunny agreed. "Sam, tell me again why we're here?"
"How soon you forget, little buddy. The inhabitants of this quaint little village are-- by some strange twist of fate-- your relatives, and we're here for a visit," said the dog.
"Oh, yeah, I do keep forgetting," the bunny commented.
While the two newcomers had been conversing, the Tea Bunnies and adventurers had watched, their eyes opened wide, without saying a word. Tabby was the first to break the silence. "Who in the world are you, and what in the world are you doing here?" she demanded.
"We're Sam and Max, freelance police," the dog clarified.
Before anyone could comment on that, a lavender Tea Bunny with purple-and-white striped petunias on her ears rushed through the crowd and engulfed the bunny (now known as Max) in a warm hug. "Why, it's little Max!" she exclaimed.
Max squirmed away from the purple bunny in distaste. "And just who would you be?"
"Your mother's second cousin on your father's side fifth roommate was my niece's hair stylist!" The bunny paused, smiling broadly. "But you can call me Aunt Petunia Petal."
Sam turned to his pal. "I always knew your Uncle Fred would do this to you, Max," he commented.
"The plot thickens," Max said with relish.
"You must tell me all about what you're doing now, little Max," Petunia Petal continued on. "You've grown so much! And who's this... dog that's with you?"
Tabby and Merry Treat were beginning to feel a bit awkward. "Eh, is this a bad time to be stopping in Tea Bunny Land?" Tabby queried.
"If this is a family reunion, maybe we'd better be on our way," Merry Treat agreed.
"Oh, no, don't go on Max's behalf!" Rose Bonnet piped-up quickly. "We never refuse hospitality to visitors."
"Plus, with no one around to view our mindless antics, they become that much more pointless," Max agreed.
All of a sudden-- as if Sam and Max's arrival hadn't been sudden enough-- a pastel blue Tea Bunny came running up, looking rather hysterical. "AHHHH!!!" she screamed, but stopped when she noticed the presence of the Desoto car. "Oh, is this that Max you mentioned, Petunia Petal?" she questioned. "Now, what was that I had to say? Oh, yes." The bunny continued on. "Somebody is robbing the bank!!!!!"
"Is life always this exciting in Tea Bunny Land, or is it just because we're here?" Tarquin pondered aloud.
"What perfect timing!" Sam said. "We're here no more than five minutes, and already a situation arises which is so perfectly suited to our unique aptitudes."
"Ooh! Oh! And I thought this trip was gonna be boring!" Max exclaimed gleefully. "Sam, is ‘aptitudes' a real word?"
"Iris, Iris, calm down," Rose Bonnet was consoling the blue bunny. "You said the bank was being robbed, did you?"
"Yes, it is!" Iris Bouquet shrieked. "I was working behind the counter-- like I always am at this time of day-- and the most awful creature came in, and--" With that, the bunny staggered forward a step, and promptly fainted.
"Oh, dear," Rose Bonnet lamented, holding the limp body of Iris Bouquet up. "Petunia, get somebody to do something about the robbery. I shall attend to Iris." Rose Bonnet swiftly pulled her friend into the shop to revive her.
"Sam and Max, you have to help us," Petunia Petal pleaded.
Sam-- who, along with Max, had been watching the scene before them with interest-- pulled out a gun. "As duly designated freelance police of whichever town it is we come from, it's our duty to bust criminals and cause as much property damage as possible, all in the name of the law!" he said forcefully.
"Yeah, just tell us where this bank is!" Max added.
"Oh, it's right around the corner, here," Petunia Petal said, thoroughly flustered. She took off running, and Sam and Max followed. All members of the remaining group looked at each other.
"It must be an evil snake reviewer!" He-Man declared.
"Let's not jump to conclusions," Tarquin cautioned.
"It's unfortunate that there aren't any banks in Grundo to rob," Tweeg said thoughtfully.
"Wassa bank?" Jar Jar questioned.
"Whatever's going on, I say we follow ‘em," Tabby commanded. And so, the adventurers continued onwards around the corner, on which sat the Tea Bunny Land National Bank.
Just as Tabby and Merry Treat skidded to a halt on the sidewalk, they saw a figure coming out the front door of the bank, carrying several large money bags. It was a humanoid figure-- but with green skin and long nose and fingers. She wore her gray hair in a bun atop her head, and was dressed in a purple robe covered with a yellow shawl.
Sam and Max were just encountering the robber as well. "Drop the dough, or we'll be forced to use lethal force," Sam called to the villain.
"Please don't drop it," Max added.
"She looks vaguely familiar," Tabby murmured softly as she watched the slim figure stop and glare at the freelance police.
"No one will use lethal force on Eleanore Tweeg and get away with it," she declared in a loud, clear voice.
"It's Mommy!" Tweeg cried out, pushing his way to the head of the group. "Mommy, what are you doing here?"
The bank robber-- who had identified herself as Eleanore Tweeg-- turned around. "Tweegie, my boy!" she said. "I was wondering when I'd run into you."
"Evil reviewer king!" He-Man exclaimed, drawing his sword and running towards Eleanore.
"Stop it! Stop it!" Tabby cried, leaping out in front of He-Man (again). "Sam and Max, you too!" She sensed a kinship between Tweeg and this Eleanore, and no relation of Tweeg could be all bad.
Eleanore critically eyed this pink unicorn. "I can see this friend of yours can identify a good villain when she sees one," she commented to Tweeg. "I wonder how you got to hanging around with her."
"But Mommy, I'm-- I'm--" Tweeg paused. "--I'm going to seek revenge on somebody! Isn't that a worthy crime?"
"So that's what you're doing," Eleanore sniffed. " ‘Going to seek revenge'. I stopped by the tower and L.B. told me you'd run off with some pastel-colored ponies and an assorted bunch of strange creatures. I was following you to see what you were up to this time."
"But-- aren't your proud of me?" Tweeg pleaded with his mother.
"We'll see what comes of this revenge business," Eleanore rebuffed him. "I saw this wonderful bank here just waiting to be robbed, and couldn't resist. Now, any proper villain would have thought of that the minute they got into town." She glanced sharply at her son.
"Looks like we have another family reunion on our hands," Sam said, sticking his gun away. "Ain't it beautiful?" He wiped a sentimental tear from the corner of his eye.
"Yeah, I think I'm gonna throw-up," Max said in repulsion.
Everyone stared around at everyone else for several moments in silence. No one really knew what was going on anymore.
"Tweeg, is your mother a villain?" Merry Treat finally spoke-up timidly.
"Not only a villain, but a member of M.A.V.O. as well," Eleanore clarified proudly. "Well, I'd better be going now. Tweeg, I hope you've done some nasty deeds by the next time I see you." She turned to walk away... still holding the stolen money.
"Stop, you evil villain!" He-Man cried out, grabbing onto Eleanore to restrain her. "I believe you haven't returned that money yet."
"Get your hands off me, you-- you--" Eleanore spluttered.
"I believe he falls into the species australopithecus afarensis," Sam said knowingly.
"Well, you did steal it," Tess said, ignoring Sam's remark.
"And nobody should ever take something from anyone else," Ursa Minor said promptly.
Tabby shot a poisonous glance towards the baby bear. "She's probably taken more than one thing in her life and gotten away with it," she muttered.
"What do I do with her?" He-Man questioned.
Petunia Petal had been fretting ever since she'd led Sam and Max to the scene of the crime. "As long as you return the money, we won't press charges," she told Eleanore politely.
"Ooh! Ooh!" Tabby squealed. "Eleanore, if you give it back, then you can come along with us!" She'd taken an instant liking to Tweeg's mother.
"And then you can see how evil I really am," Tweeg added.
"Hmm, that's an interesting proposition," Eleanore considered. "What is it exactly that you're doing?"
"I think we're seeking revenge on some snake-thing," Whimzee explained, "from what I've heard."
"No, it's some movie reviewer-guy," Merry Treat corrected.
"All right," Eleanore finally consented. "Here, take the money back." She handed the bags over to Sam (but not before secretly hiding some of the money bills under her cloak). "And get this brute to unhand me!"
Sam handed the bags over to Max. "Hang onto this, little buddy; I already have more money than we'll ever need."
"What, pray tell, am I supposed to do with this?" Max questioned.
"Oh, just put it wherever you put everything else you have," Sam replied.
"There, you are free," He-Man said gallantly, releasing his hold of Eleanore's shoulders.
Eleanore brushed her cloak off. "There now. That's better," she said, satisfied, and turned towards Tabby. "I think you have the true makings of a villain in you, whoever-you-are, even if you are disgustingly-pastel colored."
"You really think so?" Tabby gasped, clutching her front hooves together dramatically. "Oh, Eleanore, that's the best praise I've received all day!"
"I've given up hope on making anything out of my son here," Eleanore continued, "but with a bit of training, you might be M.A.V.O material."
"Cool!" Tabby beamed. "The name's Tabby, by the way."
Tarquin rolled his eyes. "Just what she needs," he whispered to Tess, "this Eleanore training her to be a villain!"
"Tex had better watch out when we get back home," Tess giggled.
"Sheesa looks kinda evil, methinks," Jar Jar said to himself.
"Uhh... welcome to the team, Eleanore," Merry Treat said tentatively. "Don't forget about the rules, Tabby."
"Ah, yes," Tabby nodded in remembrance. "Just sign this quick," she directed, thrusting a paper and pen at Eleanore.
Eleanore scanned over the paper and scrawled down her name. Merry Treat wasn't sure the villain was going to hold up her end of the bargain, but hopefully Tabby knew what she was doing.
Right before Tabby was going to stick the paper back in Tarquin's backpack, Sam spoke up. "Well, I guess we have no choice but to sign up with your demented band as well."
"And why do you say that?" Max asked.
"That's quite simple," Sam explained. "Since our show got canceled, the critics obviously didn't like it much. So I think it only makes sense that we accompany these persons on their quest for revenge."
"As always, your logic is as faulty as a Godzilla movie, but since we have nothing else to do, why not?" Max agreed.
"You crack me up, little buddy," Sam commented.
Merry Treat smiled at the two, grabbing the paper back from Tabby. "Here it is," she said cheerfully. "At least we'll have some police with us now," she added as a side-note to Tarquin.
"Something tells me these aren't your ordinary police," Tarquin predicted.
Petunia Petal stepped up and cleared her throat. "I think I'd better go along as well if you're going, Max."
"Why?" Max questioned cautiously.
"You need someone to watch over you," Petunia Petal said promptly. "We'll make a proper Tea Bunny out of you yet, Max."
"I'm scared, Sam!" Max cried out in terror.
"Buck-up, Sam-- I mean, Max," Sam reassured him. "It can't be any worse than that time you got disintegrated on the moon by giant cockroaches."
"I was just managing to forget about that," Max complained with a smile.
Anyway, with four more on the team (even if some of them still held reservations towards Eleanore Tweeg), they all walked along merrily towards the bakery Rose Bonnet directed them to in order to get their long-awaited treats. Rose Bonnet and Iris Bouquet (who was feeling herself again after the scare of the robbery) waved as their friend, Petunia Petal, and the rest of the group disappeared down the street.
After Sweet Azalea's bakery had nearly been emptied of all her cakes, cookies, and other fancy confections, everyone finally had their fill. Tabby was impatient to move on, as always. "Let's get going," she urged.
"Thanks for putting up with us, all of you Tea Bunnies," Whimzee said, not forgetting her manners.
"All in a day's work," Sweet Azalea laughed.
And, as all chapters in this story end, the group once again set off.

To be continued...


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