Stuff That Happened to Thing #5
Part 9: Albatross the One's Tangy Pasta Strudel

Last time, whole bunches of pointless characters showed up, prompting Thing #5, Hwango the Indistinct, and Albatross the One to discuss the future of the movie adaptation of the story. Albat apparently knew of something else he thought the characters needed to do, (possibly dealing with figs) but seemed to have forgotten what it was.

"I still can't remember what I was going to suggest we do." Albat said, taking his cue from the narrator.

"I'll destroy you all!" Maelefico the Sane shrieked, jumping up and down and waving his arms.

"You mentioned figs, though." Thing said.

"I'll kill everything on this planet!" Maelefico screamed, his voice beginning to crack. Sweat streamed down his forehead from the strain of shouting and flailing about.

"Yes. Perhaps it did have something to do with figs." Albat said.

"Maybe we were going to make dinner. I haven't had anything to eat since those pancakes we had for breakfast." Hwango said.

"Why aren't you paying attention to me!" Maelefico shouted hoarsely as his face began to turn red.

"Hrm. That's not a bad idea even if it wasn't what I was thinking." Albat said, looking somewhat disturbed as he considered how troubling it was that Hwango may have come up with a good idea.

"Aaaargh!" Maelefico screamed, and began spraying the area with a machine gun.

"He has his moments." Thing said reassuringly. "Why, just last year he realized that he could greatly improve his manual dexterity if he stopped smashing his hand with a hammer each morning."

"Die Die Die!" Maelefico howled in fury, his eyes bulging and his machine gun smoldering a bit from continuous firing.

"All right then, let's have some dinner." Albat said. Hwango nodded in agreement and Thing performed a brief piece of interpretive dance.

"Why won't you - gack! glah, hack...gaaaah!" Maelefico stopped in mid scream and clutched at his chest. Dropping the machine gun, he keeled over into the dirt and twitched spastically, choking and gasping for air. Eventually some lava from the nearby volcano flowed over him. Thing peered around Albat at the spot Maelefico had last occupied.

"About time." he said. Hwango looked at his wrist where someone else might have worn a watch.

"No kidding. He was starting to be a little distracting." he said. Albat and Thing nodded agreement. "Was that the evil wizard we were worrying about back in episode 7?" he asked. Albat shrugged.

"Who cares?" he said.

"Good point." Thing commented.

"True." Hwango agreed.

The all nodded agreement and went into Thing's house, which suddenly happened to be conveniently nearby again.

(At this point, time elapses during a short intermission - Go get some popcorn)

"I want a number in my name." Hwango said suddenly. "You guys both get numbers. I feel left out." Thing #5 paused in the process of de-boning another fig.

"What kind of nonsense is this?" he said.

"Directed Nonsense, with a mildly relevant angle." Albat said, putting another fig into the meat grinder.

"Ah. I suppose we haven't explored that route much." Thing said, somewhat reluctantly. "All right Hwango, what number do you want?"

"Um." Hwango said, then thought a moment. "I don't know." Hwango was somewhat caught off guard by Thing's quick concession. He'd expected to have to fight more for this. He'd even prepared for the occasion by casually picking up one of the medieval battle axes lying on the kitchen counter. "How about Hwango the Indistinct IV?"

"No." Thing said. Hwango looked disappointed. Apparently this would be difficult after all. He hefted the ax.

"Why not?" he asked, nonchalantly twisting to one side to wind up a swing with his weapon.

"I hate Roman Numerals, you're not the fourth in a family of Indistincts, and people might mistake you for an intravenous drip, instead of the ordinary drip that you are." Thing listed off, not even looking up from putting some figs in the toaster.

"Oh." Hwango said. He had to admit, those were good reasons. He lowered the ax somewhat.

"What about Hwango the 23 Indistinct?" he suggested. Thing thought about it a moment.

"It sounds pretty stupid. It suits you." he said. Albat grunted agreement, too busy poisoning one of the figs to pay much attention to the proceedings.

"Keen." Hwango said. Then he seemed to realize something, and picked up one of the roast figs from a nearby pan. "Hey, remember back in episode 4 when you said this story was utterly fruitless?" Hwango said, grinning. Thing #5 looked up at him darkly.

"You're living in the past again, Hwango. This is the present. At least, for now it is." he said.

Hwango decided not to force the issue. He might hurt his shoulder in the process, and it wasn't really worth it.

"The figs are done." Albat said. Thing #5 raised an eyebrow at him. "Oh, sorry - the broiled figs are done. The baked, boiled, spindled, mashed, and drawn and quartered figs are" Albat said, hesitating at the end as he tried to determine how to collectively refer to what was happening to the figs.

"That's an awful lot of ways to prepare figs." Hwango said, who'd been ignoring much of the food preparation process.

"No, no - that's all been done to the same batch of figs." Albat explained, pointing to the pathetic blobs of charred goo smoldering on top of the stove. "Although we do have a number of different dishes prepared." he said, gesturing to the bowls, racks, plates, and cages on the counter.

"Ah." Hwango said. He'd worried that cooking seemed like an terribly constructive and ordered thing to be doing in a story based on mindless violence and insanity. After seeing the condition of what had once, theoretically, been figs, he knew better.

"Let's get started eating the rest of the figs while those finish. We don't want the rest to get cold, melt, burn all the way, collapse, fly off, or revolt - depending how they were prepared." Thing suggested.

They moved out to the dining room to begin eating. The food is scary enough...I really don't want to talk about the meal. Suffice to say that there were some scrapes, bruises, a twisted ankle, and a mashed thumb - and Thing, Hwango, and Albat suffered some injuries too. We'll pick up next time after the meal, when the carnage has pretty much ended...well, the meal related carnage anyway.

Don't miss the next episode, in which the characters return to say and do things! Words! Dialog! Actions! I'd say more, but I've given away too much already!

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Feel free to send me questions, comments, and fig recipes.

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