So, here's my fourth fanfic. In my never-ending effort to never write a fanfic about Peanut and Grape, I kind of had a tough time picking protagonists for this one. I first thought about Pete, but Pete and King seem to be consistently written about, and I didn't want to beat a dead horse (nothing against the King and Pete fanfics, they're all really great. I just didn't want to write another one). But, I quickly came up with who to write about, and a premise. I'm really going to enjoy writing it, I hope you'll enjoy reading it. But, before I begin, I have some thank yous to throw out:
Thank you to Sinder, who indirectly got me writing at the consistency I do, as his first fanfic was what got me writing MY first fanfic, which, combined with being on my school paper, led to to my interest in writing.
Thank you to Two_Twig, who indirectly inspired me to draw a picture for this fanfic.
And, finally, thank you to 44R0N, for indirectly helping me come up with the idea for this fanfic.
(And a shout-out to Valerio in the title)
I'll update it once or twice every week, unless I update it more. We'll see. Anyways, here we go.
Fox stepped up onto the porch and put down his backpack carefully. He then reached up and pressed the doorbell firmly. A melodic tune came from the inside of the house, and after a short period of time, a black cat opened the door. He had a bite in his left ear, and a bell connected to a blue collar.
"Hey Max," Fox said, smiling.
Max grunted, looking like he had just woken up. However, he quickly gained his iconic smile, and winked at Fox.
"Ahoy, Fox. I'm guessing you want the neighborhood terror?"
"Nah, I don't need you; I'm actually looking for Bino."
Max rolled his eyes at the averted insult, and poked his head back inside. Fox was curious why Max hadn't left altogether, when suddenly-"HEY, BINO! YOU GOT A VISITOR!!!!!""ALRIGHT, YA DUMB TOM CAT, I'M COMING!!!!!"
Max peeked his head out and flashed another smile. "He'll be out shortly."
Fox blinked, and rubbed his ears to make sure they were still working. "Yeah, thanks." As Max left, Fox began to think about the odd relationship that the two pets had. They constantly bickered, but Fox had never heard Bino complain about Max. And since Bino complained about a lot, it was odd to Fox that Max had never been mentioned in a negative light.
Suddenly, the door opened wider, and Bino appeared. To say he smiled at that point would be giving Bino too much credit, but he looked happier than usual when he realized it was Fox who was at the door.
"Oh, hey, Fox. What's going on?"
Fox smiled. "Hey, today's the day we decided to go camping, remember? I've got everything I need packed in the backpack," he said, pointing at the large mass next to him on the porch. "Even the tent. You got everything you need packed?"
Bino gave Fox a blank stare for a second, then realized what he was talking about. "Ugh, really, is today that day?" he rubbed his head reluctantly. "How about this: I'll stay here, and you can take lots of pictures, and show me when you get back."
Fox gave Bino a look that was comparable to a mother whose son had just come in covered in mud. "Why did I not see that coming," he sighed. "Look, I'm going to hold you to this promise. You're coming along, and that's final."
Bino gained a pouty look, and retorted, "But that would involve leaving the comforts of modern civilization! And besides, if you've got all the stuff in the backpack, then you really don't need me."
Fox began to get frustrated, but didn't let his facial expression change. "Look, Bino, I want you to come along because I think we both need the time away from this place. So, we're going to go inside, find a backpack, and fill it with camping-oriented supplies, and then we're going to the woods behind the neighborhood, and we're going to have fun camping and relaxing."
"Ugh, fine, Mom
. I'll go get ready. I don't need you to tell me what to do."
Without warning, Fox slapped Bino across the face.
His facial expression had barely changed, but Bino went flying into the door frame. He stood back up and rubbed his cheek and forehead.
"OW! What was that for???????"
"For disrespecting your mother."
Several hours later, Fox found himself in the great outdoors. He climbed to the top of a large hill, and scanned the horizon. The neighborhood was just visible next to the expanse of forest that had been covered. He inhaled the clean air and sighed satisfactorily, holding the straps of his backpack tightly. "What a sight," he said quietly, enjoying everything around him.
His enjoyment was quickly interrupted, however, by the sound of heavy panting. He turned around to see Bino slowly climbing the hill. Fox couldn't help but chuckle, as Bino was struggling to hike the same distance he had with a backpack not half the size of his own. As Bino reached the top, he collapsed, throwing his backpack down and grabbing his water bottle. He took a large swig, and laid down in the tall grass.
"UUUUUUUUGH! Was it really necessary to go this far??????? We could have just set up the tent in my backyard!"
Fox chuckled again. "What are you, a pup? This is where the camping is real! Besides, we haven't gone more than two miles."
Bino's eyes doubled in size. "TWO MILES??????? Are you TRYING to kill me??????"
Fox looked back at the view and gave a hushed "Maybe". Fox knew that Bino hated any real exertion, which was partly why he kept Rex around, so Fox had planned to go a far distance, to get Bino some exercise.
Fox took out the map he had bought for the occasion, and looked for the camp sight. ".....Alright, we're not far from the site. We've only got about 100 feet to go."
Bino groaned, but he stood up again, and put on his backpack. Fox smiled, and began to walk back down. As he passed Bino, he patted Bino on the head, and said, "Good boy." Bino snorted at him, but followed. They eventually resubmerged into the tree line, and continued to walk. After about ten minutes, they came to a small clearing. Fox looked at the map, and looked up, smiling.
"Here we are."
Bino looked around, and began twirling his ear in his fingers. "Hm, I gotta admit, not a bad spot."
Fox smiled at the compliment, and set down his backpack, beginning to unpack it. He first pulled out a large tote bag, and set it next to the tent. After pulling out some other items, he unzipped the tote bag, and pulled out what looked to be a multicolored tarp.
Bino hesitantly looked at Fox. "Er...what, what is that?"
Fox grinned evilly at Bino. "......Our tent
Bino's face went from concern to horror. "You.....you don't mean......"
"Oh, I do
mean." Fox shook the tent slightly like matador. "We've got to set it up by ourselves.
Fox looked at the completed tent, smiling. He was panting, and his fur was covered with grass and leaves, but he had accomplished his task. He then looked over at the brown mass slumped on the ground that had previously been Bino. "Oh, come on!" he jokingly called. "All we did was set up a tent!"
Bino sat up and turned around. The large red gash on his forehead was too bright to miss. "Says the dog who didn't have a tent pole pop out and smack him in the face.
" Bino rubbed his forehead, and laid back down. "Besides, I think I've exercised more today than I've ever exercised before."
Fox raised an eyebrow. "Oh really? What about the Easter Egg hunts the club has every year?"
"Doesn't count. Everyone knows all the exercise you get is cancelled out by all the chocolate you eat." Bino closed his eyes, and a peaceful look overcame him. Fox shrugged, and picked up the two canteens he had brought. "Well, I guess now would be a good time to get water. There's a nearby river where we can get it."
Bino didn't move. "Good luck with that, I'll be here when you need me."
Fox snorted, and threw a canteen at Bino, hitting him square in the stomach. The exhale of breath was drowned out by Fox's reply: "Don't even think about it; you're coming, too."
Yet again, Bino went bug-eyed at Fox, who had turned to pick up the map. "WHAAAAAAAAAAAT????? Are you KIDDING me??????? We just walked good half of the forest, and set up a tent that tried to kill me
, and NOW you want me to go get WATER?????????"
Fox turned back around, looked Bino square in the eye, and stated, "Yep, that about sums it up."
Bino leaned forward, hitting his head against the ground. "I knew it, you are trying to kill me." He continued to softly beat his head against the smooth grass. "You probably want my position as head of the club. You figure that everyone would assume that I would give my spot to you, if I should become incapacitated, and that if I died, you would automatically be elected the new leader by the club. You're trying to do me in for the sake of power."
Fox crossed his paws, waiting for the coming monologue. Bino continued, "However, you didn't count on Fido. Fido wouldn't give up power on a whim, which is why you decided to become good friends with him. As soon as he came back from Police School, you worked to befriend him so that he would trust you when your plan came to fruition. However, you were always thrown off by his mysterious disappearances, which you hadn't expected. So, you decided to lay a trap at his house that would destroy him! Yes, right now, I bet he's dangling from a cage, about to be lowered into a tank of alligators! Oh, the horror! And, of course, Rex has your trust, but just to make sure, you've slipped a mind control potion into his lunch, to control him during the election to vote for you! You fiend! It's as if you've planned out every point in this, like some kind of messed up roulette! And now, you're dealing the final blow with my death! You're a genius! An evil, twisted genius!"
Fox smiled. "Alright, then, let's get going."
Bino sighed, picked up his canteen, and begrudgingly began following Fox to the river.
As they headed through the forest, Fox began to smile. He was thoroughly satisfied with the nature of the area, and just the thought of being able to experience it up close was invigorating. He saw a couple of squirrels chasing after each other, and chuckled as the second squirrel called the first a fat head. He looked back to make sure Bino was still following, and was slightly taken off guard. Bino was looking up at the trees with a look of awe on his face. Fox looked up, and saw the light sparkling through the green foliage, creating a stain glass window effect. Fox's smile grew, and he turned back around, inwardly ecstatic that Bino had begun to enjoy himself.
Quickly, they reached the river, and Fox dipped his paw in. He brought some traces of water up, and tasted them. "...Seems to be fine." He then dipped his canteen in, and filled it halfway with water. He held it up to the light to check it's transparency. The bright sunlight shown through the bottle and the water, giving the water a light tinge of green. "This river is actually cleaner than most," Fox concluded. "While I wouldn't make a habit of drinking this stuff, it should be good for the night."
Bino, who had sat down by a tree, stood up slowly, and walked over. "Alright, so does that mean we can fill our canteens?"
"Yep," Fox replied. "I'd peg it as safe for drinking. Fill 'er up."
Bino slowly put the canteen in the river, flinching at the cold sensation that spiked his nerves upon contact with the river. However, he continued, and quickly filled up the clear bottle to the brim. Fox did the same, and stood up. "Alright, let's get back. Let's see.....where did the map go?"
He looked around, not finding the map anywhere. "Sheesh, why'd I have to misplace it. Hey, Bino, you know where the ma-"
Fox stopped, as he noticed Bino, pointing at the river with a petrified look on his face. About fifty feet down the river, the map was floating, quickly being pulled by the river's current downstream.
Fox blinked, the situation not registering with him at first. Then, he gave a cry of fright, and took off after the map. "BINO! We have to get that map!" he cried back at Bino, trying to get him to help. Bino responded with an urgency that could only be described as spastic, and shot forward after Fox. The two dogs half-ran half-splashed down the river, trying to catch up to the map. Rocks, branches, and the continual change in depth made it difficult. Still, slowly but surely, they gained on the map. However, as they got closer, the distance between them decreased. Eventually, they were shoulder to shoulder, both trying to grab the map from a wet oblivion.
Fox suddenly found a stable foothold from a rock below the surface. Grunting, he used it to make a jump towards the map. As he flew through the air, he straightened his body out with his hands in front of him. As soon as he felt the map in his hands, he went to his knees, smoothly landing on a shallow sandbar in the river. He picked it up, smiling triumphantly. While wet, it hadn't ripped anywhere, and was still in good shape. He stayed on his knees and stared at it, amazed that nothing had happened to it.
His accomplishment, was interrupted, however, by a call.
Fox turned turned to see Bino flying through the air from the same rock that he had jumped from not thirty seconds ago. However, Bino's flight was much less controlled, almost like he has slipped while jumping. Fox groaned, and closed his eyes in preparation for the impending impact.
Bino slammed headfirst into Fox, knocking both of them into the water. Fox hit his head on a rock, and blacked out for a second. Bino went rolling, and found himself on the shore. Once he stopped, he sat up and groaned, rubbing his head with his right paw. Suddenly, he realized that something was in his left paw. Looking down, Bino eyes widened as he realized that his paw was wrapped around a piece of the map, and a large piece at that. He stood up quickly, and looked back at Fox, who had woken up and was getting out of the river. Fox rubbed his head as well, and looked down at the map. His facial expression went from pain to anguish as he saw what happened to the map: it had been ripped into uneven thirds, two of which were in Fox's paws, the third in Bino's paw. The look of anguish was followed by an angry cry that came from Fox. He clenched the two pieces in his paws, and threw them down into the river, letting them flow off. He then sat down in the river, putting his paws on his head. Bino walked up, still holding the last third.
"Fox? It was just a map; it's not that bad."
Fox looked up at Bino with a look of defeat. "No, Bino, it is that bad. Without that map....I don't know how to get out of this forest." He looked back down, and shut his eyes tightly. "I......I don't even know how to get back to the campsite without the map."
Bino looked around, feeling worried about the situation. Quickly, though, he had an idea, and his worry turned to proactive frustration. He began to walk back upstream, grabbing Fox by the bandana as he walked by. Fox was taken off guard by this action, and sputtered for air.
"Gagh, hey, let go!"
He ripped out of Bino's grip, and stood up. "What was that for??"
Bino turned back in response, and replied, "You're an idiot."
Fox was once again taken-off guard by the comment. "What on Earth? Are you trying to make me mad?"
"If it gets you motivated, then yes." Bino crossed his arms, a fire in his eyes. "You dragged me out here, against my will, and made me do all sorts of heinous things, under the idea of 'bonding'. You haven't let up on me all day, no matter what happened to me, but suddenly, you're giving up after one bad thing happens to you. And I say that makes you an idiot. We aren't even that far from Babylon Gardens. So, we'll follow the river back up to where our canteens are, and go from there. Or, I'll go, and you can lay here like a baby and give up."
Bino then began walking off, back up the river. Fox just stared, processing the scolding he had just gotten. Then, he realized what Bino had said, and took off after him.Bino's right; I can't give up. We'll make it out of this forest, but only if we keep trying.
Fox caught up to Bino, and smiled, saying, "Alright, let's find those water bottles."
Bino snorted, and kept striding forward.
Quickly, the two found their water bottles, and began to head back in the direction of their camp. Fox felt much more comfortable than he had in the river, and his confidence had risen as well. He knew the chances of survival, while already high as is, were better when he kept a level head. That, and he did have a sort of responsibility for Bino, since he had dragged Bino out into the forest. He walked with a strong stride, and promised to himself, I won't let my fears get the best of me again.
That would prove to be easier said than done, however, as the two dogs found their campsite. Fox stepped into the clearing, and stopped, taken off guard. He couldn't help but stand there, wide-eyed.
Bino came up behind him, taking a big swig out his water bottle. He finished, and gave a satisfied sigh. Then, after putting the lid on the bottle, he noticed Fox. "Uh, what's wrong?" he asked. Fox didn't reply, so Bino looked over to where Fox was looking. What he saw made him go pale.
Hunched over the cooler, swallowing the food inside, was a large brown bear. He looked full grown, and had massive claws that had a lethal gleam to them. Fox and Bino couldn't help but look on in awe, and in fear.
As if sensing that fear, the bear suddenly turned around, and spotted the two dogs. A nasty smile spread across his face, and he walked up to them, picking beef jerky out of is teeth.
"Heheheh, well well well, I seem to have found the generous contributors of my lunch."
It was a rather cheesy line, but Fox was too busy focusing on the massive size of the bear to notice. "U-um, right; you just ate all of our food."
The bear laughed. "Generous AND smart! We've got the whole package here." The bear pulled a final sliver of jerky out of his teeth, and flicked it at the two. "You 'domestic' types might not know the rules around here, so let me spell it out for ya: whoever gets the food first, eats it. You left your food out, so I ate it. Simple as that."
Bino felt a wave of bravery come over him, and retorted, "Alright, then, you ate all of our food. You have no reason to be here anymore; so you can just head off."
The bear laughed again. "Actually, my friend, I do
have a reason to be here. Now that you've returned, you're in close proximity to my cave, which means you're trespassing. Now, I hate to seem like a 'feral', but I can't have myself be threatened by outsiders," he said, standing up to his full height. "I'll just have to defend myself, so that I don't lose my home."
Fox blanched at the bear's warning, when he suddenly felt a nudge. He looked over at Bino, who was giving him a look that screamed the desire to run for it. Fox weighed the option in his head, when something popped into his head.I won't let my fears get the best of me again.
He had said that not two minutes earlier, and already that was slipping. He felt a wave of bravery come over him, and returned a solid look of "no" back to Bino. Then, he turned to the bear, and did the riskiest thing possible.
"Go ahead and try it."
The bear paused, taken off guard by Fox's comment. "What was that?"
"I said, go ahead and try it. But your odds aren't too good," Fox replied. He glanced at Bino, who's current color made him look tanned before. He then turned back to the bear, and continued.
"I mean, first of all, it is
two to one. And, even though you're bigger than us, you aren't so big that our size won't cause trouble. And, while your claws and teeth are obviously sharp, we've got more ammo than you in that department."
The bear began to look slightly worried, but held his ground. "Oh yeah?"
"Yep. But that's not even the best part! We dogs, we like to hang out in packs. So, for all you know, there are more of us. Maybe one more, maybe twenty more. We might be domesticated, but that hasn't changed, much; you know that. So, if you start attacking us, we can just give a howl, and any more in our group will just come running."
It was the biggest bluff Fox had ever given in his life; he wasn't even sure if he could howl. However, he knew that this was the only real chance they had to get out of the situation.
The bear waited, weighing the options. He then growled, and took a step forward. "I'll risk it."
As the bear raised a paw to strike, Fox stood, waiting for the pain to come. The paw began to swing forward, and picked up speed. Closer and closer it came, nearing his face. Fox closed his eyes, preparing for the white-hot pain that was about to cross his left cheek.
It never came. What actually came next, which took Fox by surprise, was a howl. Fox opened his eyes, and looked over at Bino. His mouth were in an "o" shape, and a howling sound was coming out of his mouth.
"There," he said, smirking as he finished. "Now the rest of us are on their way."
The bear snarled at this. "You're still bluffing. And even if you aren't, they can't possibly get here on time."
Before the bear finished talking, the bushes at the south side of the camp began to rustle. All three animals jumped at the sound; the bear out of fear from approaching dogs, and Fox and Bino just from not expecting it. "Crud!" the bear cried. "I'm not taking on a pack of dogs! I'm out of here!" With that, he took off running on all fours, as fast as possible.
Bino and Fox waited for the bear to run off, and then gave each other a high-five. Then, they turned to the bush, preparing for whatever was about to jump out.
The bush continued to rustle, when suddenly, a pair of pinkish gray ears popped out, followed by a matching head.
Fox and Bino cried out in unison out of surprise. ".....ZACH???????"
The bunny climbed out of the bush, brushing off leaves and looking furious. "Those IDIOTS!!!!! This is the third time they've done this!
Fox ran up to Zach, and began to help him take leaves off, while saying, "Zach! What on Earth are you doing out here???? We're pretty far away from Babylon Gardens!"
Zach gave Fox a look that would melt the flesh off of a smaller animal, and explained, "These rotten forest dwellers keep sneaking into my house, and try to bring me here so that I can "continue my reign as the opener of ways"! They're obsessed!!!!"
Fox winced at the thought of having a cult following. "I can see the frustration. But what's with "the opener of ways" bit?"
Before Zach could answer, Bino gave a cry and ran over with a look of urgency. "Zach! You said this is your third time to be kidnapped?????"
Bino gained a huge smile completely uncharacteristic of him. "Then, that would mean you know how to get out of this forest, right??????"
"Um, yeah, I know how to get out. You guys lost or something?"
Bino's smile only grew at that. He grabbed Fox by the shoulders, and shook him violently, while singing, "WE'RE GETTING OUT OF THIS RETCHED PLACE!!!!!! HALLELUJAH!!!!!!" He then dropped Fox, and began to pack. Fox hit the ground, and was about to cry out to stop Bino, but changed his mind. Eh, he's had enough for one day.
Fox then stood up, and joined Bino.
"Come on, Bino, let me at least pack something!"
"Not if you're gonna slow us down, Fox!"
A few minutes later, Bino and Fox were following Zach through the forest, everything on their backs. Zach began to walk up a hill, which looked oddly familiar. Once they got to the top, Fox realized that it was the hill they had climbed up earlier that day. As they stood there, the three watched the sun set, taking it in. Even Bino was enjoying it.
Zach began to head down without a word. Fox paused, not wanting to ruin the moment. He looked over, and realized that Bino hadn't moved, either. Smiling, he extended his paw towards Bino. Bino glanced over, noticed the paw, and looked up at Fox. Then, he grabbed Fox's paw, smiling. The two nodded, and they headed down the hill to catch up with Zach.
************************THANKS FOR READING!