#168 – Mr. T. Jangles

Tseng: “Okay, you shouldn’t have to think this long about which Care Bear is your favorite!”

Originally Published: 3/27/06 . 21 pages

Synopsis
When Rufus is away, Tseng and Rude decide to make a Mr. Jingles knockoff to earn some extra cash. But once he returns, can they keep him from finding out about it? Meanwhile at Dracula’s, Alcuard is having some bear issues of his own.

Ramble Milestones
Nothing this time.

This ramble, like many others, was not my idea. But I do own an actual Mr. Jingles that I created at the Build-a-Bear Workshop. (And I’m embarassed to admit he has quite a wardrobe) Anyway, my favorite part of this one is Tseng following Rufus around – money hungry Tseng is in full swing at this point, and he’s even willing to put on a bonnet and join a fake tea party for a couple of bucks.

(the turks are all sitting in tseng’s office, looking bored like usual. Suddenly rufus comes running in like a madman, holding mr. jingles in his arms)

Rufus: “Turks! Help! I need help! There’s an emergency!”

(all of the turks jump up, ready for action)

Tseng: “What’s the emergency?!”

Rufus: “I was lighting Mr. Jingles’ favorite honey scented candles and one of them fell on my desk! And it set my papers on fire! I was going to burn them anyway, but still! Fire!! Reno – Elena – go put it out!”

(elena and reno run out of the room. Rude and tseng frown)

Rufus: “Rude, Tseng, I have the most important job of all for you!”

Rude and Tseng: *brighten*

Rufus: “Watch Mr. Jingles!” *shoves him into rudes arms* “Guard him with your life!” *flees the room*

(and so rude and tseng look at mr. jingles with a frown. Sighing, tseng goes back to sit behind his desk. Rude stands there holding mr. jingles by one furry arm)

Tseng: “I didn’t really want to put out the fire, but it’s better than watching the bear.”

Rude: *staring at it* “Where did he get this thing anyway?”

Tseng: “I think he had it custom made.”

Rude: “It’s just a plain old brown bear. I don’t see what’s special about it.”

Tseng: “That’s a good thing, Rude. Because otherwise you’d be Rufus.”

Rude: *thoughtfully* “…Lots of kids like bears.”

Tseng: “Yeah.” *snort* “And so do eccentric millionaires apparently.”

Rude: *thoughtfully* “…I bet people would pay money for a bear like this you can dress up.”

(they both look at mr. jingles, who, if you’re wondering is dressed in black pants, a white shirt, a vest and a top hat.)

Tseng: *slowly* “Yeah… You may be on to something, Rude.”

Rude: “I need money.”

Tseng: “We could start a business and market a rip-off of Mr. Jingles! We just have to do it when Rufus isn’t around.”

Rude: *nods*

(speaking of rufus, he returns all smiles)

Rufus: “Crisis averted! Reno and Elena are buying me a new desk as we speak. Luckily the carpet was spared.” *pause* “What is with me and fire lately…” *brightens* “Anyway, it seems like you guys did an okay job of watching Mr. Jingles.” *takes him back* “I’m going on a business trip tomorrow for a week and Zell has been sent away on a mission for that stupid school he goes to. So I guess I can trust you two with watching him.”

Tseng and Rude: *grin* “Sure thing, boss.”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(the next day in the ramble room, rufus has gone away on his business trip and rude sits there drawing something. Tseng then enters with some papers in hand)

Tseng: “Well, I got the loan from the bank! And I found a factory that can produce the bears for us!”

Rude: “…When I went to apply for a loan they laughed in my face.”

Tseng: “Anyway, they said they just need some photos of the ‘prototype’.” *pats mr. jingles on the head*

Rude: “I also drew this picture with the measurements and everything.” *hands it to tseng*

Tseng: *looks at it* “Wow. This is really good.”

Rude: “What are those papers?”

Tseng: “Oh.” *sits* “I had Reeve draw up a business plan for us.” *spreads it out on the table* “Didn’t he do a nice job…?”

Rude: *blink blink* “Why did he have to do it?”

Tseng: “Heh…I’m not smart enough to do something like this.”

Rude: “………”

Tseng: “Anyway, if we sell the bears for 20 dollars each, we’ll have a profit of ten dollars! And that’s after the labor and everything.”

Rude: “Wow. Money.”

Tseng: “The factory said they can start producing the bears tomorrow.”

Rude: “Wow.”

Tseng: “Reeve said we should think about advertising. And the bear still needs a name.”

Rude: “I’ve got that covered.”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(the next day lark, reno, irvine, elena-with lily-, shell, Ashley, seifer, sephiroth, vincent, auron, reeve, and zidane are gathered around the tv in the tv room. Rude and tseng stand up in front. Tseng has a videotape in hand)

Sephiroth: “What the hell is this all about? Did you finally make a porno, Tseng?”

Tseng: “Ha ha. Very funny. Rude and I have collaborated on a new business!”

Shell: “Rude? In business?”

Ashley: “You mean he’s going to make money?”

Zidane: “And like real money? Not the kind I keep printing off the computer?”

Rude: “Yup.”

Reno: “Wait. Hold on.” *he goes outside. Everyone waits looking confused until he returns a moment later* “…Nope. It’s not the apocalypse.”

Lark: “Well what kind of business is it?”

Tseng: “This commercial will explain everything.”

(he pops the tape in the machine and steps back to watch. A bored child appears on screen)

Voice: “Are you lonely?”

Child: *sigh*

Voice: “Do you wish you had a friend who you could always count on?”

Child: *nods* “Uh-huh.”

Voice: “Well then you need Mr. Jangles! The cuddly bear every child will love!”

(mr. jangles is shown. he looks exactly like mr. jingles and is dressed in a white shirt and blue jean overalls)

Voice: “Mr. Jangles is the cuddly companion you’ve been dreaming about! He can go everywhere you go! And with hundreds of outfits to choose from, he can even dress for the occasion!”

(mr. jangles is shown wearing a firefighter outfit, a waiter outfit, a business suit and soccer uniform)

Child: *hugging mr. jangles* “I love you, Mr. Jangles!”

Voice: “Mr. Jangles – available in stores now.”

(the commercial ends)

Everyone: “Mr. *JANGLES*?!”

Tseng: “Isn’t it great? It was Rude’s idea.”

Reno: “Dude, that is a total rip-off of Mr. Jingles. That’s genius!”

Shell: “I bet you’re really gonna rake in the money now, Rude!”

Rude: “I hope so, Shell.”

Shell: “There’s this mansion by the beach I’ve been eyeing…”

Rude: *sweat drops*

Ashley: “It’s cute! I’d buy one!”

Seifer: “The last thing we need is more stuffed animals cluttering up our room!”

Ashley: “…All the stuffed animals are *yours*.”

Seifer: *shifty eyes* “Shut up, Ashley!”

Auron: “It is an excellent idea. I wish your new business well.”

Vincent: “Indeed.”

Elena: “I hope you’ll get one for Lily, Tseng!”

Tseng: “Of course! Just as soon as the first shipment comes off the line!”

Reeve: “I’m impressed, Tseng. The ad looks great.”

Tseng: *beams* “Really, Reeve? Thanks!”

Irvine: “I’m guessin’ Rufus knows nothing about this.”

Tseng: “Of course not.”

Zidane: “And I won’t tell Algus about it because he’ll blab to Rufus first thing.”

Lark: “Yeah. And I don’t think Rufus will like this too much.”

Sephiroth: “Oh, he’s going to hate it. And not because you ripped off his bear – because he didn’t think of it first.”

Rude: “Well you can all have a free one when they come out.”

Tseng: *quietly* “Rude! That’s a lot of free product to be giving away!”

Rude: “…They’re our *friends*, Tseng.”

Tseng: *pause* “Yeah. I guess you’re right.” *to everyone* “Anyway, in case it isn’t already obvious, it would be best if everyone kept this from Rufus when he gets back from his trip.”

Rude: “…And Zell.”

Sephiroth: “No one likes either of them anyway, so it shouldn’t be a problem.”

Lark: “Sephiroth! That’s not true!”

Sephiroth: “It is from my point of view.”

Lark: “What are you, Obi-wan Kenobi?”

Shell: “Don’t worry, Rude! Everybody will keep it from them. They know you need the money!”

Rude: “I know, Shell.”

Shell: “…You know I mean you need the money to buy me gifts, right, Rude?”

Rude: “…Yes, Shell.”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(several days later…tseng is in the ramble room looking through some papers with a big smile on his face when rude comes in, and he’s dressed very nicely! Mr. jingles is sitting on the table)

Rude: “Tseng…”

Tseng: “Yeah?” *looks at him* “Wow, Rude! You look great!”

Rude: “…Yeah. I bought some new clothes with some of the money we made.”

Tseng: “Well you look great! And look at those shoes!”

Rude: *looks at his shoes* “Yeah. They’re much nicer than the ones I made from pieces of Rufus’ old shoe scraps.”

Tseng: “I would say so.” *gets up and goes over to him* “And look at these latest figures! Business is booming!”

Rude: “I know. And that’s why I came to warn you – Rufus came back from his trip today.”

Tseng: *frowns* “Oh.”

Rude: “Yeah. We can’t let him see any of the commercials.”

Tseng: “Right. They’re not running on channels that he usually watches, but we’ll have to be careful if he’s in the TV room and someone else is watching.”

Rude: “Right.”

(speak of the devil, rufus enters with a big smile)

Rufus: “I’m back! Where’s my favorite cuddle buddy?” *goes to mr. jingles and hugs him* “I missed you!” *looks him over* “You look unharmed.” *to rude and tseng* “I guess you did a good job. If you’re lucky maybe I’ll let you watch him again!” *looks confused* “Uh…Rude… Where did you get those clothes? Did you steal them from my closet?!”

Rude: “No. And your clothes don’t even fit me.”

Rufus: *suspiciously* “Did you pay for them with my money?”

Rude: “No.”

Rufus: “Then where did you get such nice clothes?!”

Rude: “…Gift.”

Tseng: “I bought them for him, Rufus.”

Rufus: *still looks suspicious* “Oh really. Well isn’t that generous of you, Tseng.” *pause* “Did you buy an outfit for Mr. Jingles too?”

Tseng: “…No.”

Rufus: “No?!” *annoyed sigh* “Great. Now he’s probably jealous and *I’ll* have to buy him a new outfit.” *sigh* “Well he’s going to have to wait. I’m going to relax and watch some TV.”

(he leaves the room. Tseng and rude give one another panicked looks and quickly follow him to the tv room. There zell and laguna are watching cartoons. Tseng and rude exchange more panicked looks because these are the kind of stations the ads will be on. Rufus goes and takes a seat between zell and laguna)

Rufus: “Zell! You’re back! Great.” *dumps mr. jingles on zell* “He needs a walk.”

Zell: “No problem, Rufus. I’ll do it right after this show!”

Rufus: “What kind of show is this?”

Laguna: “It’s the Super Hyper Heroes Club! It’s about a group of super heroes that go around saving people! There’s Thunderella, Mr. Ace, Fluffy Hoolinger–“

Rufus: “Okay, I’ve heard enough.”

(the commercials come on and tseng and rude recognize the first ad right away. It’s the mr. jangles ad.)

Voice: “Are you lo–“

(but tseng grabs the remote and turns the tv off before the ad can continue.)

Laguna and Zell: “Oh…”

Tseng: “Uh oh. Cable’s out.”

Laguna: “Bummer!”

Zell: “Totally! Now we won’t know if the Super Hyper Heroes Club defeated Dr. Jerky!”

Laguna: “Or if they got to the Kaboola crystal in time!”

Zell: *sigh* “Oh well. Guess I’ll take Mr. Jingles for that walk now.”

Laguna: “I promised my son I’d toss a ball around with him!”

(zell and laguna leave. Rufus gets up and stretches.)

Rufus: “Well, I had a long trip. Think I’ll take a nap.”

(he leaves. Rude and tseng look at each other)

Rude: “That was close.”

Tseng: “Tell me about it.”

Rude: “…Maybe this wasn’t such a good idea.”

Tseng: “Don’t be stupid! You have brand new shoes on, don’t you? This is a great idea! We just need to be careful!”

Rude: “We can’t follow him around every minute.”

Tseng: *holding up the papers* “For this kind of money, watch me.”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(the next morning rufus emerges from his room with a happy yawn. As soon he turns to head down the hall he almost bumps right into tseng)

Rufus: “Ack!”

Tseng: “Sorry. Didn’t mean to scare you.”

Rufus: *blink blink* “What are you doing here?”

Tseng: “What do you mean?”

Rufus: “What are you doing waiting outside my room?”

Tseng: “I was just protecting you!”

Rufus: “…Protecting me…?”

Tseng: “Uh, yeah. I am your *bodyguard*, aren’t I?”

Rufus: “I thought you hated it when I referred to you as that.”

Tseng: “No.”

Rufus: “Yes you do. And you’re always trying to get out of it.”

Tseng: “No I don’t.”

Rufus: “Yes you do.”

Tseng: “You must have me confused with Reno.”

Rufus: *thoughtfully* “Yeah, he is pretty untrustworthy…”

Tseng: “So where are you headed this morning?”

Rufus: *blink blink* “You’re going to follow me around?”

Tseng: “Of course! That’s what a bodyguard does!”

Rufus: *suspiciously* “Did you fall on your head?”

Tseng: “I just want to earn my paycheck! Is that so hard to understand?”

Rufus: “No. You should work hard to earn your paycheck! I pay you bums a lot! Now let’s go!”

(he struts down the hallway and tseng quickly follows behind with a grin)

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(meanwhile, next door at draculas…)

Alucard: “Dad–” *eyes go wide and stops dead*

(you may be wondering why alucard would have a reaction like that. Well, it is because he has walked into the living room at his house and there are mr. jangles bears *everywhere*. And I mean everywhere. There must be 500 bears in the room. They’re even hanging off the chandelier. Alucard just continues to stand there in total shock. Dracula stands in the midst of it all)

Dracula: “There you are, Alucard! Do you like my bear army? I’m training them to steal pickles! Soon I will have all the pickles in the world!” *laughs*

Alucard: “Dad! Where the hell did you get all of these?”

Dracula: “They had to all go through a very through screening process! I had to check for fuzzies and big lumps! Plus they all had to fill out the application!” *hands alucard a receipt*

Alucard: *looks at it* “You spent ten thousand dollars on these *bears*?!”

Dracula: “Army, Alucard! On my army! At attention, now! Don’t embarrass me in front of my son!”

Alucard: “You embarrass yourself enough, dad. You don’t need any help.”

(then death enters)

Death: “My lord…” *sees all the bears* “Um… What is this?”

Alucard: “Apparently dad is constructing a bear army out of stuffed animals and whatever brain cells are left alive in his head.”

Dracula: “I think we should have party for the new recruits, Alucard!”

Alucard: “No, dad.”

Dracula: “Death – get my festive sombrero!”

Death: “My lord, I do not have time for such games…”

Dracula: “Games!? This is serious business! There are pickles I need to be eating right now!”

Alucard: “You don’t even like pickles.”

Dracula: “And you don’t like chipmunks, Alucard!”

Alucard: “Dad–“

Dracula: *thinks* “And you don’t like…light bulbs.”

Alucard: “Dad, this isn’t a game.”

Death: “I can’t handle this.” *leaves*

Alucard: “You see what you did, dad?! You drove Death away!”

Dracula: “I drive lots of people away, Alucard!”

Alucard: “Now clean this up! I don’t want hundreds of bears all over the living room!”

(he stomps out. Dracula looks around at the bears)

Dracula: “…Alucard? Everybody’s staring at me…” *whispers* “I think they want honey…”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(and so back at the ramble room, tseng follows rufus into the tv room where zell is watching more cartoons again with mr. jingles)

Zell: “Hey, Rufus! We’re watching Mr. Jingles’ favorite show!”

Zell and Rufus: “Care Bears!”

(rufus hurries over and sits next to zell on the couch)

Tseng: *to himself* “…That was a scary moment.”

Zell and Rufus: “Care Bear countdown! 5-4-3-2-1!!”

Tseng: *to himself* “…Never mind. I think that just beat it.”

(tseng goes over to the table next to the couch where the remote is. The commercials come on but the first commercial is not mr. jangles related)

Zell: “Which Care Bear is your favorite, Rufus?”

Rufus: *thinks*

Zell: “………”

Tseng: “…………”

Rufus: *still thinking*

Tseng: “Okay, you shouldn’t have to think this long about which Care Bear is your favorite!”

Rufus: “Shut up, Tseng!”

(the the mr. jangles commercial comes on. Tseng panics and quickly turns the tv off.)

Rufus and Zell: “Not again!”

Tseng: “Oops. Cable’s out again.”

Rufus: “Dammit! You know I ought to call up that cable company and give them a piece of my mind! I pay enough for their service!”

Tseng: “Uh…you could do that, or you could go outside and sit on the porch swing! It’s such a nice day out!”

Rufus: “Yeah! The porch swing! Mr. Jingles can change into his porch swing outfit!”

Tseng: “…He has a porch *swing* outfit?”

Rufus: “Of course! He has an outfit for every occasion!”

(he and zell leave the room with mr. jingles. Tseng sighs)

Tseng: “…Think of the money… Think of the money…”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(much later that day, it’s now nighttime. tseng comes into the ramble room and collapses on the couch. rude sits at the table going through some papers)

Rude: “…Haven’t seen you all day.”

Tseng: “That’s because I was following Rufus around all day.”

Rude: “Yikes.”

Tseng: “Yeah. It was an…experience.”

Rude: “What did he make you do?”

Tseng: “Well, it didn’t start out too bad. He had breakfast with Algus and they talked about business stuff. Then he went to some business meetings. …That’s when things took a down turn. Then we had to take Mr. Jingles shopping. That took up a good four hours.”

Rude: “Four hours??”

Tseng: “…Yeah. *Four* hours. Because Mr. Jingles has to try everything on before he buys it, and he’s very picky about what he likes. And he likes to try on the same thing in multiple colors.”

Rude: “Ouch.”

Tseng: “And then Rufus took me to the gym. He didn’t work out at all. All he did was walk around pretending like he was working out. And then he went and sat in the sauna with a bunch of naked guys.”

Rude: “And you went in there too?”

Tseng: “Well…that was one of the better parts of the day.”

Rude: “Hm.”

Tseng: “Finally we went shopping *again* but this time Rufus was looking for a golden tablecloth.”

Rude: *blink blink* “A *golden* tablecloth?”

Tseng: “Yeah.”

Rude: “Made of gold.”

Tseng: “Yeah.”

Rude: “…And tablecloth.”

Tseng: “Yeah.”

Rude: “………Tell me he didn’t find one.”

Tseng: “Oh, he did.”

Rude: “…What kind of mall was this?”

Tseng: “I’m not really sure, but you needed a special pass to get in.”

Rude: *shakes head*

Tseng: “At least he bought me a frozen yogurt.”

Rude: “Really?”

Tseng: “Yeah. …Although it was only a small and he wouldn’t pay the extra ten cents for a topping.”

Rude: “That sounds more like Rufus.”

Tseng: “I know.” *sigh* “So please tell me it was worth it.”

Rude: *nods* “Take a look.”

(he hands tseng some papers. tseng looks them over, a smile slowly growing on his face.)

Tseng: “Looks like I’ll be following Rufus around tomorrow too.” *grins*

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(meanwhile, over at dracula’s house, alucard is looking quite drained when he walks into the living room to find all the mr. jangles bears are still there. and they’re *moving*. dracula is in the midst of it all once again, dancing around in the middle of the room with a baton.)

Alucard: *eyes wide* “What the…dad!”

Dracula: “It’s a symphony, Alucard!”

Alucard: “Dad, why are the bears *moving*?”

Dracula: “Well they have to move to get the pickles, Alucard!”

Alucard: “Dad, whose souls are in these bears?”

Dracula: *looking up at the ceiling* “There are chickens on the ceiling, Alucard!”

Alucard: “No there isn’t. Dad, listen to me—“

Dracula: “I wonder if they go well with stuffing…”

Alucard: “Dad, you have to get rid of these bears!”

Dracula: “Nonsense, Alucard! We need pickles to go with the chicken!”

Alucard: *hand to his head* “I don’t know what else to do…”

Dracula: “Move faster, my minions! Soon I’ll have mountains of pickles to roll in! And everything will smell of vinegar!”

Alucard: “I’m leaving now.”

Dracula: “Can you take some of these bears with you?” *whispers loudly* “I think some of them are a little slow.”

Alucard: “The only one who’s a little slow is you.”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(the next day in the ramble room, shell walks in to find rude going over more paperwork)

Shell: “There you are, Rude! How’s the business coming? Enough for my castle in the Scottish highlands yet?”

Rude: “It’s good, Shell.” *pause* “We actually had someone offer to buy it.”

Shell: “Someone wants to buy it? Well what kind of offer was it? Enormous castle in a foreign country money?”

Rude: *shrugs* “I guess so. But I can’t do anything without talking to Tseng first.”

Shell: “Why? Aren’t you a man, Rude?”

Rude: “…Yes, Shell.”

Shell: “And can’t a man make his own decisions, Rude?”

Rude: “Yes, Shell.”

Shell: “And didn’t *you* come up with the idea, Rude?”

Rude: “Yes, Shell.”

Shell: “And won’t a castle in the Scottish highlands make my life complete?”

Rude: “…I don’t think I wanna answer that one.”

Shell: “You better think about this one, Rude. And you better think about it hard.”

Rude: *thoughtfully* “Hmm…”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(speaking of tseng, there he is following rufus around again. it seems rufus has already had his breakfast and morning business meetings. they’re headed back to rufus’ room now)

Rufus: “Now that that’s all over with, it’s time for a weekly tradition.”

(they go into his room. there mr. jingles sits a little table like a child might have. he’s dressed in a frilly outfit, complete with a bonnet. there’s tea set for 3 on the table. and it’s not an adult tea set, it’s a tea set clearly meant for a child. rufus goes over and puts a derby hat on before sitting at the table with mr. jingles. tseng remains in the doorway, staring in horror)

Rufus: “It’s time for tea with Mr. Jingles! We love having tea together, but it’ll be even more fun to have someone join us! The only rule is you have to wear a hat! Isn’t that a fun rule? Mr. Jingles made it up. Anyway, I didn’t know if you had a hat, so I picked one out for you!” *points to the bed*

(tseng looks to where rufus is pointing. there is a frilly bonnet lying there. his expression turns to even further disgust.)

Tseng: “…………No.”

Rufus: *frowns* “Tseng…sit.”

Tseng: “I am *not* wearing that hat.”

Rufus: “You’re gay!”

Tseng: “So what?”

Rufus: “So…you should be used to wearing hats like this all the time!”

Tseng: *blink blink* “…What do you think gay people *do*, Rufus?”

Rufus: *shrugs* “I don’t know…wear frilly hats and dance around singing show tunes?”

Tseng: *takes a deep breath and mumbles* “Think of the money… Think of the money…” *normally* “No, Rufus. I can assure you you’re way off base. Having said that, I guess I’ll join your tea party.”

(he unhappily puts the hat on his head and sits down at the table. rufus smiles and picks up the tea pot and ‘pours’ some in his cup and mr. jingle’s cup. nothing comes out)

Tseng: “…There’s no *tea*?”

Rufus: “No. Mr. Jingles finds it too hot. But he does enjoy the tea party experience!”

Tseng: *hits himself in the head*

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(a short time later, the tea party is over. Rufus is pushing mr. jingles in his stroller as he and tseng start to head outside.)

Rufus: “And now it’s time for a stroll in the park.”

Tseng: “Does anyone ever look at you weird for pushing your bear in a stroller?”

Rufus: “No! Why would they?”

Tseng: “………”

(then elena comes along down the hallway, pushing lily in her stroller)

Elena: “Tseng! There you are! I’ve been looking everywhere for you!”

Tseng: “I’m sorry, Elena – is something wrong?”

Elena: “Oh, no. I was just wondering if you could take Lily for a bit while I run some errands?”

Tseng: “Oh. Yeah, that’s no problem. Do you mind, Rufus?”

Rufus: *smiling at elena* “Of course not!”

Elena: *blushes* “Thanks, Pres…er…Rufus.” *tseng takes the stroller* “You know where everything is, Tseng. I’ll see you later.”

(with one more smile at rufus, she walks away. Rufus stares at her, still grinning as she leaves. Tseng notices this exchange and frowns)

Rufus: “All right! Off to the park! And I have to push Mr. Jingles in a swing or he’ll get upset.”

Tseng: “…Does anyone give you weird looks for doing that?”

Rufus: “No! And why would they?”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(meanwhile, over at dracula’s, it seems alucard has gathered some friends to take on the army. He has dante, sephiroth, lloyd and zidane in the kitchen. Nobody looks very happy)

Alucard: “First of all, thanks for coming.”

Sephiroth: “I guess I can see why the skanky slutbag is here–“

Dante: “Oh, was that a shot at me? Lame.”

Sephiroth: *glares at dante but continues* “–But why is *Lloyd* here?”

Lloyd: “My name is Vergil, you dumbass!”

Dante: “Because he follows me around. He wants to be cool.”

Lloyd: “More like *you* want to be cool, Dante!”

Sephiroth: “And what the hell are you doing here, Zidane?”

Zidane: *sighs and points to lloyd* “I went over to his place looking for some action. …This wasn’t what I had in mind.”

Alucard: “Anyway, my problem is that dad has been obsessed with these toy bears. He has them all over the house and he’s used wayward souls to possess most of them, so they’re moving.”

Sephiroth: “…Okay, this is more than I signed up for.”

Dante: “Yeah, I would leave if I were you. It would be embarrassing to get your ass kicked by a teddy bear.”

Sephiroth *whips out masamune* “How about I whip *your* ass?!”

Dante: *takes out sword* “Bring it!”

Alucard: “Both of you stop! Now we have to get rid of these bears!”

Zidane: “How are we gonna get rid of them if they’re *moving*?”

Alucard: “Leave that to me. Just grab the bears, put them in these sacks, and I’ll dispose of them later.”

(he hands out some burlap sacks. He then leads the group into the living room which is still full of bears. Almost all the bears are doing some kind of task. Except for alucard everyone in the doorway looks shocked.)

Sephiroth: “Every time I think your dad can’t get any weirder…”

Lloyd: “This is out of one of my nightmares!”

Dante: “That doesn’t surprise me, Lloyd.”

Lloyd: “It’s VERGIL! And you shut your @#$%^&* mouth, Dante!”

Alucard: “All right.” *deep breath* “Let’s get to work.”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(later, tseng returns to the ramble room looking tired and still pushing lily in her stroller. She’s asleep. Rude is standing there alone.)

Rude: “You okay?”

Tseng: “Yeah. I’m just tired.”

Rude: “Lily being a handful?”

Tseng: “No! Rufus was! We dragged Mr. Jingles all over the park! First he had to go on the swings, then the slide, then the sea-saw! Can you imagine how stupid a grown man looks trying to sea-saw with a stuffed bear?”

(before rude can reply, sunshine enters all smiles)

Sunshine: “Well, it’s done! Your business is sold and the money is in the account!”

Tseng: *jaw drops* “What?!”

Rude: “Uh…”

Tseng: “Rude! You sold our business?! How could you do this?! And without even asking me first?!”

Rude: “Well…it was a great offer. And I didn’t want the buyer to back out because we took too long to decide.”

Tseng: “But we were making so much money! How much did you sell it for?”

(rude hesitates a moment, but then he goes over and whispers something in tseng’s ear. Tseng’s eyes get wide)

Tseng: “Wow. Really?”

Rude: *nods*

Tseng: “Well you should be set for life now! We both will!”

Rude: “…You would think so…”

Tseng: “Uh-oh.”

Rude: “Well, after paying for Shell’s castle in the Scottish highlands and paying off my outstanding credit card debt, I pretty much broke even.”

Tseng: “Oh.”

Rude: “And that doesn’t count the money I still owe Rufus.”

Tseng: “Oh.”

Rude: “And I’m sure I’ll be right back in debt soon.”

Tseng: “I see…”

Rude: *smiles* “But this is still the best thing that’s even happened to me!”

Tseng: “And I have more than enough money to send Lily to any college she wants! And for like twenty years at that!” *pause* “Who bought it anyway?”

Rude: *shrugs*

Sunshine: “Even I’m not sure. The buyer was very secretive.” *shrugs* “I guess it was some kind of big toy manufacturer or something.”

Zell’s voice: *from outside* “Hey, Rufus! You won’t believe this weird commercial I just saw! There’s this bear someone’s selling that looks exactly like Mr. Jingles!”

Rufus’ voice: “WHAT?!”

Rude and Tseng: *look at each other* “He never has to know.”

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

(meanwhile, back next door at dracula’s, all the bears have been collected in the sacks, which show signs of the bears moving inside of them. Sephiroth looks bored, dante is grinning as usual, zidane looks even more bored than sephiroth and lloyd is fearfully watching the moving bags)

Alucard: “Thanks for your help. This’ll teach dad to fill the house with his latest obsession.”

Sephiroth: *checking watch* “Sure it will. Can I go now?”

Lloyd: *scared* “Yeah! Those things are gonna break out and attack me!”

Zidane: “Oh knock it off! They’re stuffed animals!”

Dante: “We’ll let you take care of this. I’ll catch you later.” *winks*

(so dante, lloyd, sephiroth, and zidane leave. Alucard grabs one of the bags of bears and is about to leave the room when dracula enters, whistling happily)

Dracula: “Guess what, Alucard!”

Alucard: *freezes* “I’m bracing myself, dad.”

Dracula: “I just bought the factory that makes my bear army! Soon I’ll have a bear continent! I have workers making bears round the clock!”

Alucard: “…No. No you don’t.”

Dracula: “I sure do! Those pickles better watch out! Because Dracula and his bear army are on their tail! I’m having a truck deliver the first shipment in an hour! We’re having a party! Where’s my festive sombrero? I bet Death borrowed it again. He thinks he’s Mexican. Death???”

(he wanders out while alucard stands there, his chin quivering and still holding the bag of struggling bears.)

THE END

Advertisements
This entry was posted in The Final Stretch and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s