02. Of Pegacorns and Fluffy-sama

Disclaimer: I don’t own The Lord of the Rings, nor do I own any mentions of Terry Pratchett, Inu-yasha, or mini-balrogs. Thank you. And neither does Kali own Sessho-maru, as much as she would like to convince you she does.

Today coming along with me is my good friend Kali, who for the sake of the story works mostly in the Inu-yasha department. You’ll see why she’s here after a bit. And this, scarily enough, is a fairly accurate portrayal of her. She’s sitting beside me—*gets whacked*

Fine, fine! It’s accurate enough, but she’s more intelligent, and schooled, and beautifu—stop dictating or I’ll never get to the story!

Kali: Fine!

Oh, yes. I don’t own Makes-Things. But I made him an assistant, Fix-It, and he is my character. Please don’t use him.

Based on “I Will Be Waiting For Your Return,” at fanfiction.net under “DeathCaller.” It made me twitch. Which is NOT a good thing.

Oh, yes. I heartily apologize for the mangled spelling of “Rurouni” in the last chapter. However, Taro’s old partner did lust after Zanza, rather than Sano—she wanted the fighter-for-hire, and thought that after Kenshin beat his pants off he was a bit of a pansy.

And another note before we go: The fic we’re PPCing has been taken down. Apparently, the author is rewriting it. So the part of it after the “Bursar” comment will be from memory, rather than story references—however, it was so…memorable…that unfortunately, I don’t really need them. Sigh.

Both Taro and Fireblade glared at the computer. As they attempted to fry the machines with their gazes, someone knocked.

“I’ll get it, you read,” said Fireblade as she stood, going to the door and opening it.

Her good friend Kali, from the Inu-yasha department, bounced in and said, “I get to go on a mii-ssion! I get to go on a mii-ssion!”

Fireblade sighed and closed the door. “Kali, you go on missions dail—erm…I don’t know how to tell time here…you go on missions regularly.”

“I’m on leave, provided I help you!” Kali said, opening the weapons-cupboard and rummaging through the shelves. “Oooh, Pixie Stix!”

“Lord-Sesshomaru-sama,” said Fireblade, sharply.

Kali fell to the ground and began to twitch as Fireblade closed the door and set Arngorn to guard her Pixie Stix. Taro looked up. “Very bad piece of crap,” he announced, “Who’s your friend?”

“Kali, meet Keitaro, originally from the Rurouni Kenshin department,” said Fireblade as Kali stood, “Taro, meet Kali, from the Inu-yasha department.”

“I think I saw you once,” said Kali, thoughtfully. “Wait—didn’t you work with my partner on that crossover that was just…scary?”

Taro frowned. “Come to think of it…”

Fireblade plopped down on a beanbag and scrolled through the story. After a few sentences, she fell off the beanbag—if such a thing was possible—and began to twitch.

Taro looked down at Fireblade sympathetically. “Greenleaf again?” he said, hauling his partner up by the arm and setting her back on the beanbag.

Fireblade went into cardiac arrest. Taro grimaced. “Sorry. The ‘G’ word, I meant.” Glancing to Kali, he added, “It’s like the ‘m’ word with the Librarian.”

“Aaaahhhhh,” said Kali, wisely, “Except she doesn’t start bouncing people’s heads on the pavement.”

Taro paused. “…there is a slight difference, yes. And why are you here?”

Before Kali could answer, Fireblade sat up and said, “Sesshomaru and Kagura.”

Kali fell backwards and began to twitch. Fireblade stood and brushed herself off, adding, “It’s a good thing we have all these beanbags, really. She’s on temporary leave until she gets her sanit—well, some of her sani—well, until she stops twitching when someone says the Special words.”

“…Rin, no, no, don’t do it,” whimpered Kali, grabbing her head in her hands. Fireblade sighed and said, “Fluffy-sama!”

Kali relaxed as Fireblade nudged Arngorn gently aside and took some Bleeprin from the cabinet. “Here,” she said, tossing it to Kali.

“SUGAR!” said Kali, ignoring the Bleeprin. Fireblade rolled her eyes. “So what do we have, Taro?”

Taro, who had been watching with some interest, started and said, “Eleven through fourteen, twenty-one, twenty-five, twenty-eight, twenty-nine, thirty-two, thirty-eight, forty, forty-two through forty-five. Apparently, she’s a ‘cross between a unicorn and a Pegasus’, and yet Legolas is in love with her.”

Fireblade swallowed visibly. Kali piped up: “What do the numbers mean? Ooh, pretty colors!”

Taro and Blade stared bemusedly at Kali as she tried to snatch some of the flames from Arngorn’s back. “Female, stunningly beautiful, color-changing or unnatural eyes, makeup and clothes overdescribed, not human or Elf— “ they recited in unison—

“Yeah, yeah, yeah, let’s just go,” said Kali, spotting a coil of Mirkwood spider-silk on the wall. “What’s this?”

“Mirkwood spider-silk,” said Fireblade, taking it down and handing it to Taro, who put it on a hook far away from Kali.

“CAD?” he said, looking at Fireblade. Nod. “Portal thingy and double-deck of cards?” Another nod. “Spider-silk coil?” Yet another nod.

“Lessgo,” said Taro, turning to the disguise generator. “What to be?…”

“She says black dragons called ‘Crimps’ are invading her nonexistent homeland,” observed Fireblade.

“Let’s be Crimps!” said Kali, cheerfully. “We can fry her haaaaiiiir….her horizontally striped haaaiiiir…”

“If you really want to be a flapping hair curler— “ began Fireblade—

“Straightener! Straightener!” said Kali, hurriedly. “All those who work in the Sessho—I mean, Inu-yasha department know all about different types of hair styles and style-makers and stuff.”

“Fine,” said Fireblade, “If you really want to be a flying hair straightener, we won’t stop you.”

“Nah. I don’t wanna anymore,” said Kali. Fireblade rolled her eyes and looked at the computer. “Orcs?” she suggested.

“We could be memory-leafs and get eeeaaaten!” said Kali, who was duly ignored.

“Eh…” said Fireblade, “Something tells me canon is so stretched out of shape it won’t care what we are, in which case I don’t want to be an—“

“Let’s be Pegacorns!!!” said Kali again, somehow pronouncing several exclamation points. Taro and Fireblade exchanged looks, in which Fireblade nodded and Taro closed his eyes momentarily. The Pratchett was right about multiple punctuation marks…”We don’t know what kind of strange skills they have!” continued Kali, oblivious.

“Do you really want to learn?” pointed out Taro.

Kali thought for a moment. “Nah.”

“Elves, then,” said Fireblade, punching a few buttons on the disguise generator.

Kali barged through first, followed by Taro and Fireblade as they hopped through the portal.

And two Pegacorns looked at first each other, then at the Elf standing near them, with looks of utter horror on their faces.

“It wasn’t me! I swear!” squeaked Kali, very much aware that she was standing right near two very fast, flying things with spikes on their heads. She cowered.

Then she straightened and looked at the two with interest, forgetting her terror within the blink of an eye. “You have horizontally striped hair!” she said, staring at the two Lord of the Rings agents.

Taro examined Fireblade carefully, then turned to look at himself. The former Kenshin agent had red and green stripes. “I feel like a walking Christmas ornament,” he muttered under his breath. “And how the hell did I manage to turn out with two legs and two hands, if my parents were both four-legged?”

Fireblade waved aforesaid hand frantically and said, “Shh! Don’t let the universe catch on!”

She caught a look at her own image—specifically, some of her hair—and stopped dead in horror. The female agent had long, flowing hair and tail, horizontally striped turquoise and royal purple. These colors, harmless and actually pretty on their own, clashed miserably when put on a creature that never should have existed.

Taro looked up at the Words, frowning with his somehow human face. “She’s wearing denim…Gimli gives Legolas a rock as a parting gift…looks like she doesn’t know that they never actually parted…”

“That sounded wrong!” said Kali, the disguise-generated Elf, looking normal enough, clapping her hands to her ears. “And I wanted to be a Pegacorn!!!” she whined, after a moment.

Taro and Fireblade exchanged a look that said as clearly as words, Multiple exclamation marks again.

“Legolas loves her for her personality. Oh, how sweet,” said Fireblade, waspishly. “When should we get her?”

“As soon as possible,” said Fireblade, again waspishly. “I want to get out of this effing disguise.”

“I want the wings,” said Taro, “They’ll look nice mounted on our wall.”

“Oooh, ooh, ooh! Can I have the horn? Please please please?” said Kali, bouncing up and down—an incongruous gesture for an Elf. “I’ll wear it around my neck and use it to disembowel Sues!” She paused for a split second and began bouncing again. “Wow! This journey is really making me feel better!”

Fireblade grumbled, “Speak for yourself.”

Taro, seeing that he was going to have to deal with Grumpy!Fireblade™ for the rest of the mission, wisely said nothing.

“There’s a mini in the end of the story,” said Fireblade, looking farther down the Words, “A few chapters ahead. Name of Saron. We’ll need to portal him home.”

“All right,” said Taro, “Let’s get going.”

The Elf and two assassins began walking through the woods—well, the partners were walking. Kali was bouncing along, humming happily as she realized this canon was so out of whack she could actually do the moves from Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.

The flying ones, in particular. Defying gravity, Kali happily bounced along in the air, pausing occasionally to chop an air-enemy. Fireblade at last had to resort to invoking the name of Ëarendil, reminding canon that only a very few Elves could defy gravity, and that Kali wasn’t one of them. There was a confused rumble, and Kali suddenly fell out of the air onto the ground.

“Ow!” she said, rubbing her shoulder where it had impacted first, “What’d you do that for?”

Fireblade minced along daintily—er, as much as anything with hooves can mince—and said, “Because you were throwing canon even more out of whack, and it is my responsibility as a senior agent to correct you.”

“Feh,” said Kali, grumbling under her breath. After a moment, though, she was bounding along again, happily using the Elven ability to jump to greatest advantage. Fireblade sighed again.

“Want to tie her to a tree?” muttered Taro under his breath. “We’ve got the silk…”

“Bind and gag me to a tree,” said Kali, eavesdropping shamelessly, “And do your ‘work!’”

The implication in her voice was impossible to miss. Taro and Fireblade exchanged a horrified look. “Me?” squeaked Fireblade at last. “With him?”

“Or better, bind and gag each other!” continued Kali, and this time the implication was practically screaming from the sentence.

“Since you both have hooves and all—“ she began, but both Pegacorns lashed out a hoof and hit her in the stomach. Kali flew backwards and slammed into a tree. If this had been an anime fandom, both assassins would have sweatdropped and gone slit-eyed in shock, but as it wasn’t…

They continued walking, reading the Words as they looked for the Sue, “Honesah,” a Pegacorn with “horizontally striped blue and gold hair,” “a gold neckless,” and denim pants.

“There isn’t denim in Middle-earth,” muttered Taro, “There just isn’t.”

“I can’t wait to see the ‘neckless,’” said Fireblade, slowly, “I wonder what gold necklessness looks like?”

Kali came running up behind them again, breathing heavily, and said, “What happened? I feel like I was kicked by a horse!”

Fireblade and Taro exchanged looks and raised eyebrows. “Brain like a sieve,” said Fireblade, at last.

Meanwhile, Kali was chasing a butterfly at the side of the path.

After a long time of walking, the agents came to where the Sue was. It was well into the first chapter, and the Sue had just eaten a “memory leaf,” which she had thought was a “banana leaf that tasted like a banana” and lost her memory.

“The heck?” said Kali, looking at the Words for once. “Banana leaves don’t taste like banana. They taste like old lady’s perfume!”

“I don’t even want to know how you know that,” said both the other agents on cue.

Legolas came strolling up to her out of the blue—since Honesah and the space around her had just performed a stomach-twisting jump to the Mirkwood, leaving the agents staggering—and said, “You have broken your ribs?”

The agents stared at each other, then at Legolas, then at each other again. Two [FOOM!]s from each of their packs indicated that their Character Analysis Devices had spontaneously combusted. Both winced and took off their packs, carefully removing the mangled remains and placing them in the indestructible sample bags Makes-Thing’s new assistant, Fix-It, made.

“Great,” muttered Taro, “Well, that goes on the charge list…on the other hand, I’m not sure if Fix-It will replace these.”

“I have one,” said Kali, taking a CAD out of her pocket, “But…I don’t know if it’ll work here. It’s set for Inu-yasha.”

“Gimme,” said Fireblade, darting forward, knocking Kali over with her horn and grabbing the Device. She waved it at Legolas.

[Sessho-maru. Canon male. 99.99999999999999999999999% OOC CHARACTER RUPTURE!], read the Device. The agents gathered and stared at it, causing a moment of amusing confusion when Taro and Fireblade knocked their horns against each other and fell backwards. After getting themselves standing again—which took some doing, since both of them had horse hind legs, which weren’t really designed to be balanced on—they stared at it again.

“The heck?” said Kali again, looking at her device. “If Legolas is Sessho-maru, then logically, Legolas is acting 259.475% out of character.”

Taro and Fireblade blinked at Kali. She looked confused. “Wow, I said something intelligent,” she said, looking down at the Device, “Sues must be getting to me again.”

That said, she went into convulsions similar to when Fireblade had said, “Lord-Sessho-maru-sama.”

“Ooookaaaay,” said Taro, after a moment, and turned back to the characters.

“You are Honesah Hoononee Keemo,” said Legolas, a dazed look on his face. Taro blinked. “Sounds like a Hawaiian sneeze.”

“Keemo!” shouted Kali, managing to make it come out like a sneeze on-cue.

Fireblade and Taro exchanged raised eyebrows again and looked back at the scene, but not for long—

“I am Legolas Greenleaf—“ continued Legolas—

Fireblade fell backwards with a screech. Honesah whipped her head around, being the only one who could hear them, but quickly looked back at Legolas, simpering at him. Taro, meanwhile, stuffed a Mirkwood Spider-Silk gag into Fireblade’s mouth to keep her quiet and shook his partner, trying to snap her out of it.

Fireblade kept twitching, with no signs of stopping.

“Uh-uh-uh-“ stammered Kali, “Say something about Lord of the Rings canon!”

She turned to her friend. “Uh—uh—Gimli likes Galadriel!” she blurted.

No response from Fireblade, who had mostly stilled, but her eyes were rolled into the back of her head as she continued to twitch. Kali looked desperately up at Taro. “Uh—uh—do you know the Lay of Lúthien?” she said, desperately. “She loves that story!”

Taro closed his eyes for a moment, lips moving, then said, “I do. When she comes out of it, though…slap me.”

Kali paused. “Lust-object?” she said, looking at Taro interestedly. Taro nodded.

Kali nodded. “Right. Now….go!”

Taro began. “The leaves were long, the grass was green, the hemlock-umbels tall and fair—and in the glade a light was seen of stars in shadow shimmering. Tinùviel was dancing there to music of a pipe unseen, and light of stars was in her hair and in her raiment glimmering…”

Taro’s anxiety faded, and a rather dreamy look took over his face. Getting into his stride, he continued to recite. Slowly, Fireblade’s twitches stilled.

On cue, Kali leaned over and said, “Thranduil.”

The invocation of Fireblade’s lust-object combined with the pure Canon strains of the Lay of Lúthien snapped her out of it. Fireblade sat up, inadvertently concussing Kali with her horn, and slapped Taro dreamily. “Where?” she said, eagerly, looking around.

Kali was rubbing her head. “Ow.

The story hadn’t progressed very far. Now Honesah was “growling as if she was a full grown Crocodile.” The agents stared as she grew a long, reptilian snout and sharp teeth.

“Crocodiles don’t growl,” said Fireblade, finally.

“By crikey,” muttered Taro, “She looks really strange.”

“Breathe…don’t think about Sues…breathe, don’t think about Sues…AAAH! THE SUES ARE COMING!” shouted Kali, and ran into a tree. The agents stared at her for a moment, and turned back to the Sue and the dazed-looking Legolas.

After some more bad grammar, the Sue and Legolas started running. Fireblade and Taro kept up easily, but Kali was wandering along behind them without a care in the world. At last, Fireblade dodged back, forcefully picked her up, and carried her. Being at least half horse—unicorn—er, equine had its advantages.

“No,” said Kali, for no reason in particular. “That’s just wrong.”

Taro and Fireblade exchanged looks again. “Bursar?” mouthed Taro at Fireblade, who nodded vehemently and accidentally speared a passing butterfly on her horn.

They watched as Honesah handed Legolas a “cut of her hair,” whatever that was supposed to be, and portaled themselves to Chapter Two.

Somehow, the story had screwed up canon so badly, they ended up in Chapter Three. Both agents stumbled, Fireblade nearly falling over, when—

“Where in Arda are we?” cried Taro in despair. “I thought we were in Mirkwood—or maybe—“

“I think we’re in Lothlorien now,” said Fireblade, squinting and trying to read the Words, eyes watering. “Wait—what the—she just got pregnant for no reason, and—“

“Look!” said Kali, from her vantage under Fireblade’s arm, “There’s a thing!

As Legolas stared out of the window in despair as Honesah flew away, Taro, Fireblade, and Kali stared at the small creature in the crib.

The aforesaid creature was what the Words referred to as a “Colty,” whatever that was supposed to be—and apparently Honesah had just given birth to it. Her. The newborn Pegacorn slept in its crib, and—

“It’s actually…kind of cute,” said Fireblade, distractedly, “I mean, it looks like what I’d expect a cross between a winged horse and a unicorn to look.”

Indeed, the sleeping “Colty” was definitely equine, with a small, stubby horn and downy wings. As of the moment, it was an unspecified color, so it was overall a rather odd shade of grayish-brownish-nothingness.

And indeed, it was cute. Taro sighed internally at his partner’s maternal instincts, and resignedly picked up the Colty. “Fireblade, is there any type of creature smaller than you are that you don’t go completely ga-ga over?”

“Nope! She even babies spiders!” said Kali, instantly, as Fireblade went gooey-eyed at her partner holding the newborn, “And that said, can we kick some Sue ass now? Because I want to get her before she turns into a cat!”

”WHAT?” came the outraged cry of Fireblade. She stared up at the Words.

…and indeed, later in the story, Honesah would walk into a cloud of poison and walk out looking strangely like a cat-anthro, for no apparent reason. Fireblade groaned. “To hell with charges, if I stay in this form any longer, I’m going to have a permanent aversion to turquoise and royal purple.”

“Fair enough,” said Taro, agreeably, knowing this might be the only way to distract his partner from the Colty—

And Legolas turned around. Normally, he wouldn’t be able to see the agents, but since he was so out of character, he stared blankly at them. “Who are you?” he said, eyes flickering over the Colty, “And what are you doing with my beloved’s child?”

Luckily, with the Sue at a distance, the Elf seemed more dazed than anything else. Taro and Fireblade exchanged glances. “We’re—uh, envoys,” said Fireblade, “I—uh, that is, he’s supposed to watch her child while she…fights Crimps?”

“Come on,” muttered Kali, for once displaying some presence of mind and grabbing the other two agents. “Get out before he figures—“

“Too late!” said Fireblade, as Legolas’s eyes narrowed. “I don’t believe you. Guards!”

“I’ll get him!” said Kali, bouncing up and down, cracking her knuckles—but Fireblade grabbed her. “He’s canon,” she hissed, “Upstairs would come down on us like a ton of—“

She paused to consider the various nouns that could possibly fill in for a bunch of flora, and at last filled in with, “Compost. And compost is smelly. So let’s go.”

“Where?” said Taro, looking from his armful of Colty to Kali to his partner. Fireblade stared at him for a moment, heard the pounding of feet on the stairs, grabbed Kali, and leapt from the window.

Fireblade!” shrieked Taro, his voice hitting the upper registers in his agitation at a: his apparently suicidal partner, b: his Christmas coloring, c: the still-slumbering Colty in his arms, and d, or perhaps e-z for both its slight pun factor and highest priority, the murderous canon character advancing on him.

Then he saw his partner beating large wings frantically, and realized that he was, after all, part flying horse.

Gritting his teeth, Taro followed his partner out the window.

Several minutes later, thanks to a strange and unfortunate plothole in the sky, they landed in chapter four by a random lake. Taro’s hair and half his feathers were on end or facing the wrong way, because they had just run into the tail-end of a legion of black dragons that seemingly couldn’t decide whether to be hair straighteners with wings or nondescript black dragons as they tumbled through the air. “Right,” said Fireblade, who somehow looked as immaculate as a turquoise and royal purple creature could, “You portal away the mini, I’ll watch Kali and get the Sue.” She cracked her knuckles.

Taro, seeing the look in Fireblade’s eye, turned promptly around and headed for “Saron.”

Fireblade and Kali headed in the opposite direction, right towards where Honesah was preparing for her big battle with the chief Crimp. Crouching behind a Crimp stuck full of arrows, Fireblade peered over it, pondering how to reach the Sue—

Then flung Kali at her.

Honesah soon found herself pinned beneath a shocked and yelling PPC agent, currently yelling something in Japanese to the effect of, “Bakayarou! Fireblade no bakaga!

Fireblade followed the path of Kali’s flight and folded her own wings, landing rather adeptly for a half-humanoid, half equine creature with horse legs, a tail, and a large horn on her head. Honesah’s eyes flared with defiance. “Who are you?” she demanded, “I am your Princess—“

“And I couldn’t care less,” drawled Fireblade, taking Honesah by the collar in a surprisingly proficient stranglehold. Watching Arngorn kicking students around at OFUM had paid off very well. Honesah choked as Fireblade took her behind the carcass of the Crimp. “You’ve racked up an amazingly long list of charges,” continued Fireblade, “But I think it can be cut in the circumstances.”

“I have to save my people!” bleated Honesah, “And my love will surely save me!”

Fireblade snorted rudely. “Kali, you’ve had to neuralize Lord Fluffy many a time, I’m sure. Go take care of our dear Elf.”

“Can’t be harder than a demon hostile to humans!” chirped Kali, and happily bounded away. “As for you,” said Fireblade, twisting the stranglehold, “I’ll need to devise a strange and painful death for you.”

“Charges,” said Taro, reminding her as he returned from portalling the mini-balrog back to OFUM. Fireblade rolled her eyes.

“Do I haaaave to?” she whined. Taro glared.

“Fine. Honesah Hoonoonee Kemo, or whatever your name is, you are charged with being a Tenth Walker for no reason, being a horse that looks like a human, creating a species that doesn’t exist in Middle-earth, calling Legolas Greenleaf, having horizontally striped hair that makes my eyes hurt, wearing denim in Middle-earth, misspelling things right and left, creating a species of uncanonical dragons, having a child for no apparent reason, being entirely too angsty when I’ve had enough, bringing Mirkwood and Lothlorien within a few miles of each other, making banana leaves taste like banana, making bananas exist in Middle-earth, creating “memory leaves” which also do not exist in Middle-earth, being a Sue, causing Gimli to ditch Legolas and give him a rotten parting gift, mangling canon, and walking into a poison cloud, surviving, and returning looking like a cat when you shouldn’t even look human.”

“Now that was a run-on sentence,” remarked Kali, returning and pocketing her neuralizer—strangely, she seemed rather saner than usual. “Any last words, Hawaiian-sneeze girl?”

All right, maybe not sane, then.

“You have no—“ began Honesah, but just then, Fireblade clapped a hand painfully over her mouth.

“What should we do with her?” she said to the other two agents.

Kali shrugged, and Taro looked thoughtful.

…well, as thoughtful as a humanoid with horizontally striped red and green hair, tail, and wings, not to mention a horse’s hind legs, holding a baby winged unicorn can look.

“I think…” he said, after a moment, “We should introduce her to real dragons.”

Fireblade’s face broke into a smile. “Excellent!” she chirped, and both Kali and Taro took a step backwards. When Fireblade chirped, especially with that smile on her face—surrounded by turquoise and royal purple hair as it was—something bad was about to happen.

“Portal thingy, please,” said Fireblade, shoving Honesah down and delivering a strike to her forehead with a hoof. Being half-horse did occasionally come in useful, especially when it came to kicking.

Taro opened the portal, and Fireblade took Honesah through. Kali and Taro did not pass through themselves, but both cautiously pressed their ears to the barrier, listening—

“Snacktime, Smaug!” came a cheerful chirp from across the barrier, “This girl thinks you dragons are called ‘Crimps.’ Also, you should cook her well before you eat—who knows what she may be carrying?”

There was a pause, a scream—presumably from Honesah—a roar, and a chomp.

Fireblade flew through the portal again, slightly singed around her feathers and tail, but smiling evilly. “Apparently Smaug has objections to being called a hair curler,” she said, with immense satisfaction, “Let’s go home.”

Fireblade: And there is the end of chapter two! I hope you enjoyed this, and the fanfic really was terrible. I hated it. And I am not exaggerating in the least about any of the details.

And I do go all maternal over baby spiders, before you ask. See you next time!