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The Adventures of Joe: Space Ranger Action Hero 2.5

Mono Tony looked around in sudden amazement, “What was that?”

“What was what?” Joe asked.

“That ‘Dun! DUN!! DUN!!!‘ noise!”

“Oh, that. That’s just a cheap plot device. It means that we’re approaching a climax or something.”

“Plot?” the monster said in surprise, “There’s not supposed to be any plot! I ate it all!”

“Apparently, you missed some.”

“And how was I supposed to know that I needed to eat the dun’s too? It’s unconventional!”

“I’m sorry.”

Mono Tony started scratching himself nervously. “And just what other unconventional storytelling means do you employ?” he asked.

Joe started scratching his head. “You know, I honestly couldn’t tell you.”

Dun!

DUN!!

DUN!!!

“There it went again! Why is this happening? I can’t be stuck in plot I just ate, it gives me gas!”

“Well then, I suggest that you stop doing things that make the story so interesting.”

Then somehow, a curious look appeared on Mono Tony’s face. “Like what?”

“For starters, you can’t go around eating my sidekicks. It really raises the tension.”

“Oh!” said the beast, “That’s easily undone. He didn’t have any substance to him anyhow.”

Then Mono Tony sucked in a huge amount of air and reared back his head.

BELCH!!

With a loud burp and a toxic odor that immediately settled everywhere in the cavern, Steve came flying out of Mono Tony’s mouth and landed in a mucus-covered lump next to Joe.

“Oww,” Steve whimpered from under a thick veil of smelly green ooze.

Mono Tony sat there for a moment rubbing his tummy, trying to figure out if he felt better or not. “No, no. This won’t do,” the monster complained, “My gas is still rising. Think of something else, quick!”

Joe sighed and shook his head, “Of course you’re not feeling better! How is this story supposed to get uninteresting with you looking like you do? You’re much too big and scary! So long as the narrator keeps describing you as a big, horrible monster, you’ll never feel any better!”

The ugly, oversized beast sat there and pondered Joe’s wisdom for a moment. His massively gargantuan tail twitched nervously back and forth like a whale beached on the sand. His immense and grotesque claws rubbed back and forth over his large and bloated stomach as if they were a herd of elephants trampling through the jungle. The terrifying beast’s massive stomach suddenly lurched like an earthquake and rumbled like a thunderstorm in the distance. A mighty blood-curdling cry of pain escaped from the monsters cavernous and razor toothed mouth.

“Alright! Alright! I get your point!” Mono Tony pleaded, “I’ll see what I can do!”

Then the beast slowly started to shrink. Joe kept a trained eye on him as the monster’s gargantuan head slowly shrank away from the ceiling. Mono Tony stopped when he was about half as large as he was before.

“There, how’s that?”

Joe stared at him a moment, and then shook his head. “I don’t know. You still seem pretty scary to me. How about you Steve? Is he scary to you?”

A barely audible whimper escaped from the pile of phlegm.

“Yeah, Steve agrees with me. You might want to take it a bit further.”

“Oh, okay,” the monster groaned, and then he started shrinking again. This time, he stopped when he was about the same size as the NBNLFM.

“Now?” Mono Tony asked.

“Mmmm, I don’t know. I’m thinking smaller still.”

“Dave agrees” appeared on the partly chewed screen above the NBNLFM.

Mono Tony grumbled, but began shrinking again. This time, he stopped when he was about the same size as Joe.

“Okay, this has got to be good enough.”

“Well,” said Joe, “Do you feel better?”

“Yeah, a little bit.”

“But not completely better?”

“No but,” Mono Tony complained, “I can’t get much smaller!”

“Perhaps,” Joe suggested, “furrier or cuter?”

“Oh, come on!” Mono Tony begged.

“You’ll feel better! Trust me!”

The much smaller and less intimidating beast gave Joe an evil look, and then began transforming. He looked the same, but furrier, with big long eyelashes.

“And now?” the beast asked, fluttering his eyelashes.

Joe had to try hard not to laugh. “It’s possible that you could still be intimidating.”

Then he transformed into a tiger.

“Oh come on! The stuff of nightmares!”

Then he transformed into a wolf.

“Respectable but still scary.”

Then he transformed into a badger.

“Badgers! We don’t need no stinking badgers!”

Then he transformed into a squirrel.

“Perfect!”

“You really think so?” Mono Tony squeaked.

“Don’t you feel much better?”

“Actually I do! Thanks!”

“No problem,” Joe said nonchalantly. Then he whipped out his laser gun and blasted Mono Tony before he could say or do anything else. Once the beast was nothing more than a pile of smoldering fur, Joe held up his gun and blew on the tip of the barrel (even though there wasn’t any smoke) and then he spoke a quirky one-liner:

“I know a few Amazons who would kill to have you for an outfit.”

Once Joe was done feeling satisfied with himself he turned and started digging Steve out of the pile of spit. “Steve are you okay?”

“I’m never okay,” Steve replied meekly, “but I’m alive.”

“Well, I guess that’ll have to do.” Then Joe started wiping slime off of Steve. “So, I suppose that we had an adventure after all.”

“If that’s what you want to call it,” Steve muttered.

“We traveled to a strange and mysterious place and then faced a mighty and terrible foe, but still managed to come out on top. That is adventure!”

“But is it over?”

“Yes!”

“Good then, can we go home now?”

“Sure!” Joe paused. “After I have another meaningless argument with the narrator!”

“Oh, great,” said Steve shaking his head. “I think I’d rather go sit in the NBNLFM and watch Dave have a conversation with himself.”

“Suit yourself,” said Joe as he watched Steve stumble towards the plot device. Then he turned his head up towards the ceiling and started talking. “Well, I thought you said this was going to be an art piece. What happened?”

Would you believe me if I told you that an adventure like this was planned from the start?

“No.”

How about this? The ending was created in a vain attempt to shift the blame for this fiasco of a story away from me.

“Much better.”

Well, did you learn anything?

“No, but I had one of my strongest beliefs confirmed.”

Oh, and what was that?

“Be who you are.”

That’s it?

“Yup.”

Wow.

“So, are we done now?”

Yes.

The End

“Did you think that was a good ending, or did it just fall flat?”

I don’t know, but when it’s over, it’s over. You’re not supposed to say anything after “The End.”

“Oh, sorry.”

The End

“I’ll try harder next time.”

I said!

THE END

“Oh.”

Never mind.


*The creators and publicists of this story would like to apologize to any of the readers who may have felt misled by some of the content in the preview. It has been brought to our attention that the mood suggested in said preview does not exactly fit the mood expressed in the story itself. While we are not legally obligated to take responsibility for this error or any action to correct it, we do feel comfortable with the idea of slapping an informal apology on the end.

Furthermore, some of you may have noticed that some of the material presented in the preview for the story did not actually appear in the story itself. If you did notice the lapse mentioned above, we applaud your attention to detail, but we also jeer your lack of having something better to do. Our explanation for the said mistake is as follows. The preview was completed and released before the final cut of the story was actually made. It was determined that one of the scenes which appeared in the preview, while meritable and humorous in the preview itself, was not quite what the creators of the story were hoping for in the final cut. In essence, it was funny by itself, but just plain sucked in context. So, to sum everything up, we’re sorry. There, we said it.

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