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HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread 
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5.
Haichiko Mercy, Babylon Gardens

The worst thing of being a relative of a patient was letting your beloved one in the hand of perfect strangers, trusting his or her life to people who, no matter how prepared and trained, were subject to error. It wasn’t a fault per se, it was…normal.
And it was terrifying, especially when a whole staff had to take care of the needs of five critical patients at the same time…
Bill Lindberg was sitting in the waiting room, holding Bailey to himself, while Ryan, Jeff, and Bigglesworth’s Mom were doing the same with their pets. Fox was leaning against the glass wall as if wanting to tear it apart. The others had just left, knowing there wasn’t much they could do or say at this moment…
No one dared to speak, while the minutes passed…or, rather, slugged away.
Eventually, the door to ICU2 hissed open. Mordecai Stanwick walked out.
Everyone stood up.
“Are they fine now?” Sasha asked, showing a big smile. The veterinarian saw the pure trust in her eyes, that unswerving faith in humankind that only a dog was said to have. Her voice didn’t even tremble as she asked it.
Stanwick nodded. He smiled warmly. “The Amlodipine stabilized them. We are now giving them the cocktails to help their bodies recover from the effects of the hypotension and spare their organs from shock. It will be a few hours before we can see the results, but we can tell for sure they’re out of danger.”
Contrarily to what one could expect, there were no cheers or applauses. Sasha, Blanche, Bailey and Fox just took turns with their parents to hug the man. Inside the ICU room, the staff was leaving the five patients alone.
“You can stay with them again, now,” Stanwick encouraged the visitors.
Only Bill stood behind, while the others entered the room almost tiptoeing.
“Brain damage?” Bill asked, almost whispering, once the door had closed.
“May be there, but as far as the other organs go, there have been no problems. Which means that the chances for their brains to be damaged are significantly reduced. How is the investigation going?”
“Nothing new on that front, for what I am concerned: The moment you told Martin what had caused the poisoning, he took off and went to Terrace High to check on the party’s recordings.” Bill gritted his teeth. “I just want that man to give the vermin to me. Even half-dead will do.”
Stanwick chuckled. “Get in line.”
---
Security Center, Terrace High.

“On my watch under my nose…” A furious Doberman Minipinscher could make for a funny fight –imagine, the tiny toy doggie baring his teeth to the big world!
Tobee Gallant wasn’t being cute at all. His fur was bristling like a cat’s. his digits flew over the keyboard. “My watch my nose. I’m so gonna get you you…” he was repeating, while his eyes scanned for the mosaic of images coming from the most elaborate surveillance system money could buy and invent.
The ShoWall™ was like a Big Brother nightmare come true. Not only would each picture come from the cameras hidden everywhere, catering staff uniforms and trays included. Even the phones had been hacked!
Martin wasn’t surprised he had to sign a nondisclosure agreement. It was almost…embarrassing to listen to every bit of private conversation flowing, even if all spoken words ended up mixing in a cacophony. He just wished he couldn’t make out certain…observations regarding Fino… “I thought I was a control freak, Raimund. Did you hire the NSA to set that thing up?”
Martin, Keene, Gottschalk and Gabriella were examining that massive breach of privacy together with the heads of security from the Lucky Charm Grove, the Gardens, the FNERL and the High. At one word, a war could be raised.
“Actually,” Gottschalk said without a trace of humor in his voice, “I conceived and sold PRISM to the NSA. As a prototype of this network.” He turned to Gabriella, this time smiling drily. “A god has to be all-knowing, after all.”
“Just remind me never to cross you,” the woman said, sincerely admired and terrified at the same time.
“Oookay!” Tobee said at that moment. “The Facial Recognition System has sorted out our foes in the midst! There they are!”
The immense mosaic was reduced to a series of clips showing Calvin Sugary and his cat, Hobbes.
“They didn’t need to be in Babylon Gardens, after all,” Martin said, stating the obvious. “Very clever of them.” By now, there was no reason to doubt anymore: Calvin had made sure that the deadly pastries were to be delivered while he had the time to leave the community.
Of course, one had to prove that Calvin and/or Hobbes were involved in giving their victims the Prevex in the sodas they had drank, thus exposing themselves to the effect of the grapefruit in the pastries… That, or any half-witted lawyer could have him out with no bail in a minute.
Precious minutes passed as the images ran, and showed Calvin doing nothing but taking notes on a pad, barely exchanging a greeting to those who accidentally bumped him. He was practically drawing no attention to himself.
“How long before you’re supposed to announce your retirement?” Kevin Greyfield asked Gabriella.
She looked at her watch. “Two hours. Can we speed up the process? Perhaps they had a stock of cans poisoned—“
“No,” Keene interrupted her. “Perchance of committing a massacre was too high to keep this threat hidden. No, this was for you to get the message, madam. Anything bigger, news would already be everywhere.”
“Perhaps we could speed it up,” Light the wolf said. All eyes went on him. His were focused on the wall. “Let’s start from the end: The fact that King was there is revealing. If this message was supposed to be political, then the four brothers were the intended target from the beginning.”
“King was collateral damage. He was poisoned because he was with them, and thus a potential witness,” Gottschalk said, nodding. “And if he got the same dosage, it means they have drunk when they were together, at the same time. Mr. Gallant?”
“On it boss!” The small dog was already opening a new series of frames. A few minutes later, there they were!
Sharing soda cans at a bar lounge! The five dogs were acting cheerfully, a close-knit group of chums exchanging jokes and anedoctes…
But there was something strange in that image.
“Who is serving them?” Martin asked. “The angles come from other staff, but not from the one serving the—“ He understood even before finishing the sentence.
“Rewinding,” Tobee said. “Switching camera…there! Our first suspect!”
This time they all saw him: A cat was helping the barman to serve the four guests of honor.
A Turkish Angora cat. His fur was dyed brown with black stripes, but it was him, and the computer just confirmed it.
Hobbes!
“Wasn’t the catering staff supposed to wear uniforms?” Gabriella asked Gottschalk. “Did no one notice that discrepancy”?
“Not when the party is in full swing and they had to serve hundreds of attendees,” the tall man said. “Regretful, I’ll have to renounce their services, but that was an easy mistake to commit. As a psychologist, Calvin Sugary knew how to use this weak point. Admirable.”
“That remains to be seen,” Keene said, as he watched Hobbes giving five cans to the dogs.
“Enhancing” Tobee said. The cans grew on the screen to the point one could almost make out the specks making the cans’ brand pigmentation.
“There!” Keene said, pointing out.
A tiny hole on the cans’ top.
Needle hole.
Just as Stanwick had suspected: The preparation had come in micrograins, each covered with a gastro-resistant film.
“Scanning bar codes and comparing them with the items in stock for the party.”
A moment later, the result was given out with an electronic blurt and a red line
ITEMS: BOUGHT AT VENDING MACHINES S-413, S-378, S-256, S-402
“Cameras,” Tobee said. A moment later, the ‘customers’ were shown in the act of buying the goods.
“Gotcha,” Tobee said, grinning, at the sight of Calvin and Hobbes working each on a machine. They also took care of not speaking a word.
“Now go to the restrooms, please,” Martin whispered.
“Can we bring any of this to court?” Keene asked. “Even a couple of minutes would make a pretty solid proof.”
“Unfortunately,” Gottschalk said, “only the residents have signed a waiver that allows security minor privacy breaches, except for cases of terrorism of course. And this is not the case, despite the despicable course of action. But don’t worry.” His deep-blue, almost purple eyes, hardened. “I have trained my staff to…obtain information that can stand a trial.”
In the meantime, the evil duo reunited at the restrooms at floor 3. There, Calvin went to a stall, where he produced from his jacket a Diabetic Insulin DI Pocket Case. At that point, he quickly injected the Prevex into the cans, with quick and efficient gestures. Less than one minute to seal the fate of five innocents…
In another stall, Hobbes was dying himself with a can of fur spray paint. The stage was set.
Except for one thing… “I think I know who hired them. Well, sort of,” Keene said, his voice sounding as if he was paling.
“Come again?” Martin said. Of all the people in the world who could know such a thing..!
The ex-richest pet in the world kept looking at the frame showing Calvin injecting the Prevex. “That particular matter was discussed at a meeting with the heads of the pharmaceutical department. I was high on caffeine, to stay awake and pretend to be interested.
“They discussed of this new drug line, ‘Magic Dust’ or something like that. In short, when a soda drinker takes a medicine, he or she will minimize its effects, because even traditional gastro-resistant films will be corroded faster by the added acids and the carbonates in the soda. So the guys at med dept. told me they’d invest a five million bucks or six to give the world this stuff that would release the active principle gradually, even when one was too stupid to keep his vices down.” He didn’t go on. Didn’t need to. Instead, Keene chuckled bitterly “Funny, eh? I financed the idea on the clause that the first results would go to the animals.”
And, of course, who at Milton Industries had all the authorization to call that particular department and send for samples of an experimental drug that still wasn’t on the market?
Martin’s cold fury was being increasingly replaced by absolute anger as he just said, “The fault is mine, Keene, for not getting rid the world of those two idiots when I had the occasion. I won’t make the same mistake twice!”

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Last edited by valerio on Mon Jul 08, 2013 12:55 am, edited 2 times in total.



Fri Jul 05, 2013 5:22 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
I can't wait to see the look on Celia and Thomas's faces.
No seriously somebody draw a picture of that.
Doesn't stu normally do your images?

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Fri Jul 05, 2013 7:47 pm
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Poor Stu! Should I ask him that as well, right now, HE'd start running after me, swinging a hatchet! :lol:

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Sat Jul 06, 2013 12:16 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
They have defied the Gods for the last time. They shall pay in blood.

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Sat Jul 06, 2013 12:47 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Cerberusx wrote:
They have defied the Gods for the last time. They shall pay in blood.

A lot of gods oh me a favor. I'm thinking about calling in one.
Let's see, primus hates hurting anyone, unicrons on vacation, and arceus doesn't have hands.
I'm gonna need to dig deep in my phone book for this one.

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Sat Jul 06, 2013 8:28 am
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I changed this episode's title, since I just discovered that I could leave out the 'election day' theme and use it for next episode.
Thank you for your attention.

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Tue Jul 09, 2013 6:25 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
6.
Limbo

The beast – a thing walking on four legs, a muscled and gnarly body covered with ash-grey fur – raised one of her heads, the other growling and grinning maniacally.
In life, the Whiteman dogs had been the incarnation of a nightmare: Three monsters, the fruit of the final selection in the bloody business of Pet Fighting.
The jaws opened, deliberately slowly, showing the inner light of hellfire.
In life, three pups selected to be the ultimate canine killers had escaped and had grown up strong and vicious.
Flame started accumulating into the fiery maw, like water ready to break the dam.
In life, two males and a female had terrorized Babylon Gardens, killed innocents, but had eventually paid the ultimate price. One of them found peace.
The other head howled in obscene bloodlust, sizzling drool falling from its jaws.
The other two never did. Not even death could quench their thirst for vengeance, and now they had the final occasion to make everyone PAY!
And the flames flew! A gushing torrent that scorched the ground it ran over, a promise of searing death.
The first to react to that threat was Teoxihuitl. “Everyone behind me!” He roared. No one needed to be told twice, and while the group of five dogs and their celestial companions compacted behind the Aztec jaguar warrior, Teoxihuitl crouched and a large shield appeared against his arm…
The torrent of flames broke against the shield! From behind their barrier, it was like being a little too close to a volcanic pit for comfort.
“I don’t think we can stay here forever!” Fino shouted above the flames’ roar.
The shield started to show cracks.
Teoxihuitl nodded. “Do you have a plan?”
Fino did the same. “We must split.”
“Are you crazy?!” King shouted in turn. “I’d rather go for good ol’ ‘safety in number’!”
“No! She wants us. And she’s alone, while we are too many! Our allies must fight her without worrying to protect us at the same time!”

The gush of flames kept flowing. But now, the exterior surface of the shield was completely scorched.
The beast’s other head laughed. “You don’t have a chance, pathetic half-souls! Just give up already, and your demise will be—Uh?”
All of a sudden, her preys started running away, in small clusters…everyone in a different direction!
NO! You won’t escape me!” And this time the second head joined the first, though not spitting out fire, but acid!
The fire flow that was intended for Bino and Joey met the barrier erected by Mod, the mouse guardian angel. Joey stopped instinctively, covering his head with his arms. In a moment, Bino was over him to protect him.
“You better not stop, guys,” Mod said. “Don’t give her the chance to choose a target!”
“Easy for you to say!” Bino growled. “Shouldn’t you summon a holy firesword or something a bit more useful?!”
“Not my rank, sorry! Guardians are not proactive: Blame bureaucracy!”

The acid-spitting head wasn’t having a better time. She was trying to get either Fino or Fido, but those two dogs kept changing position, making it impossible to pick a target. “Will you just stop, you blasted mortals?!”
The other head, the male Whiteman Dog's, decided to join the fight. “Bah! You can’t do anything without my help!” He opened his maw, ready to fire—
Someone slammed into the creature! And did so with such force as to make it roll a couple of times, yelping, before it stopped and regained its posture, shaking its heads. “Who dared?!”
“Try and pick on someone your size, hellbully!” Rook said, grinning, posing as if ready for another attack.
“You’re strong,” both monstrous heads said. “We like it. Your essence will be so much tasteful to devour. And the anguish of your parents for losing you so soon will be sooo sweeter.” She stepped forward, already opening her maws—
*CHOMP!*
It was difficult to imagine a funny expression on such a dreadful creature. And yet, that was exactly what it showed…before roaring with pain, spitting drops of fire and acid! With a horrible growl, both heads then turned toward its back legs.
Both still being held in the jaws of two female corgis.
“You hurt me! You puny, little—“ she stuttered.
“As unborn,” Mod said, floating toward the beast, “they are the quintessence of innocence. You should know that, metaphysically speaking, it’s like holy water splashed against you who are turning more and more toward a demonic state.”
Lira and Mackenzie didn’t let go of their ‘prey’, in fact doing their best to sink more their teeth into her flesh…until they saw their enemies’ jaws readying to spit out. They whimpered.
“You are too talkative, angel! Watch them di—*GWARGHR!*” The beast’s body was hit by a long spear and impaled against the rocky ground!
The group gathered behind her, so to avoid any trick from her heads. “It also serves to distract, don’t you find?” the winged mouse said, while Teoxihuitl kept the thrashing monster in that helpless position.
King ran to his litter-to-be, hugging them. “What did you think you were doing, you stupid little whelps?!” he said between tears of relief. “Don’t you dare to put your lives in danger for me! That’s what the parents are supposed to do!”
“Sorry, papa,” the females said together.
Rook grinned, instead. “Well, it’s nothing you or mama wouldn’t have done, right?” And then licked the tears away.
King giggled. “Especially Bailey, I must admit it—“ he was interrupted by the monster’s roar.
“Coward! Let go of me!” But no matter how strong its efforts, it just couldn’t break free.
“How can it still be alive?” Bino asked, scratching his head. Not an unreasonable question, considering that the jaguar’s weapon was well lodged into the beast’s thorax… Then Bino facepawlmed. “Oh. Yes. Spirit. Dead already.”
“Can’t you exorcise her or something, then?” Joey asked. To Mod, he added, “You’re an angel! You should be able to do it, right?”
The mouse shook his head. “I’m sorry but not. Spirits like her can be banished from your native plane whenever they try to interfere improperly with mortals’ lives. But here…here, only finding peace could send her to Heaven. Or to Hell, should she embrace completely her inner darkness.”
It was King who regarded the tiny ghost with the most sarcastic expression. “You are pulling our leashes now, right? I mean,” he pointed at the thrashing figure. “You would call that a fine specimen of happiness?!”
And at those words…the infernal dog stopped moving. Panting, the female head lifted, staring directly at the Corgi. “Heh. Just like you, should’ve known it.”
The group frowned at her. King was puzzled. “What do you mean?”
Her chuckle sounded much like the sound she had let out during her attack at the Sandwich family. “Oh, so typical of you to stop at appearances, and run from your responsibilities, turn your back on the pain of the innocents! Do you think we chose our existence? Do you think we were happy to grow up without parents, and then mistrusted, feared, hunted by your kind?! We are the victims!
“Hunted by our..?” Fido walked near that head, with Morrigan right at his side. He crouched near the beast. “What do you mean?”
As Fido asked that question, Bino gave a look at King. The Corgi’s eyes had noticeably shrunk. In fact, he looked positively terrified as his still unborn litter held him closer to them.
“What is taking them to rescue us? Flower Power?” King was mouthing, starting to sweat through his tongue.
The beast growled. “Not yours, dog! I mean—“ Poisonous drool sizzled against the rock as she leered. “Ahh, so it looks like your supernatural allies had kept that from you.” The other head looked at King. “Yes, I can see you for what you really are, even though it’s just a pale memory of your former self. Wonder how it happened...that a mighty human could be turned into such a puny dog! Perhaps you could tell them, Joel.”
Except for Morrigan, Mod and Teoxihuitl, who didn’t dare to look, and in fact looked even sorry themselves, the others were looking at King as if he had suddenly sprouted demonic horns and wings…and, even worse, Rook, Lira and Mackenzie, too, looked as if they had just discovered the thing they believed to be their daddy had indeed come from an alien pea pod.
King felt…what? Panic, fear, to a level he couldn’t have imagined, so strong that he was happy he didn’t have a physical body, because he was sure he’d have a heart stroke there and now.
But he also felt, in a weird blend that he could almost actually taste, relief and resignation.
His eyes were glued to the ground, his mind lost in thoughts. It was over. At last, it was out. He shouldn’t have to worry about Bino discovering it, Fido discovering it…heck, everyone discovering it. When they’d be back, who among the pets of Babylon Gardens would care for these stupid elections? Oh, no, not when you had the demon in your midst revealed, right?
Bailey… Bailey would just…heh, Sorry, luv, but I don’t do humans.
Guv’nor? Oh, hey, yes. Joel Z. Robinson here. Listen, Sir, about that death sentence… Yes, I have the firing squad here and, frankly, shall we save some taxpayers’ money and get this over with? Thank you, sorry that I can’t vote you again.
King couldn’t even bring himself to cry. A hysterical laugh wanted to burst the dam, but it remained stuck in his throat.
He could only come up with a question. “What you said before… What did you mean?”
Again that odious leer. “Oh-ho, so you also locked up that precious memory in the secret trunk of your traumas, eh, little Joel? Heh, please, let us help. So that the friends you deceived all along can see why you still deserve Hell’s deepest region, the Ice Like of Lord Belial himself. The punishment for traitors.”

“Is there any chance she’s lying?” Fido asked to Morrigan. The poisoning, the coma, this…this place…and yet, Fido couldn’t imagine something worse than this new revelation.
Because Fox, his best friend, had helped out a monster who was almost responsible for Fox’s death!
Because Bailey was…having pups with…
Fido felt sick.
“Lying and deceit belong to demons, here,” Morrigan said, shaking her head, the saddest expression on her face. “Half-souls like them,” she looked at the two-headed beast, “are defined by the truth they obsessively cling to… Or, at least, what they believe with all their might it’s the truth.”
“They can’t lie,” Fido said, more to himself.
And it was then that something happened.
The first drops started to fall.
Fido raised his head.
There were clouds in the sky.
It was raining.
And when he brought his eyes back to the—
--Street?
Fido looked around. “Ah, guys? Guys?
No one but him, the rain and a street barely illuminated by dim lampposts.
A familiar street. His mind working faster, in that analytical way that, in many one cases, had earned him praises from his superiors. Fido recognized the shops from the archive photos. He remembered verbatim the shop owners’ reports. One of the dog cops had been quite…careful in redacting them almost as if it were a novel.
The horror tale of the pet murders at Rushey Green Street! Fido knew the name of the street even before lifting the gaze to the street sign.
He had studied it at the Academy: A feral attack at the expenses of two pets, two…escaped dogs…
Something passed by him, almost pushing him over! Fido startled. “Hey!”
But of course they weren’t listening.
Fido turned.
He recognized those dogs. Two greyhounds, one of them with a chestnut fur. And there was a white-furred female cat with them.
And among them, a boy. Fido felt his heart sink further. Why didn’t I make the connection, back then?! Back when Joey had told him his pets had kidnapped him—
“Because I was never reported as ‘kidnapped’,” said someone behind him. Fido turned again.
King. The thick rain was mixing with his tears, adding to his defeated expression. His eyes looked almost…glazed, empty. “My father had told the police I had run away and took my pets with me. Just like my brother had run away first. You couldn’t know. No one knew. And I had only wanted to forget…”
“Will you just shut up, you little twerp?!” The female cat said. “We’re so tired of your constant whining! You want to go home? You are home, so get used to it!” Her claws sunk deeper in the dirty fabric of the boy’s shirt.
“You just won’t get it, eh, Helias?” The brown-furred greyhound said, grinning in a most unpleasant way. Like the others, he kept his senses keen, scanning for the minimum sign of danger. “He thinks he’s too good to be our friend like he said. He needs to be taught another lesson!”
“There will be time for that, Honcho,” said the silver-furred canine. “Right now we got to find a decent corner to sleep. It’s been raining for hours.” He turned to the boy. “So, ‘master’? Where did you lead us? You seemed so sure this was the place an hour ago!”
Joel was breathing in labored gasps. He had been trying to hide the coughs since the day before. He was terrified of sounding weak and useless…

“I was afraid to be eaten by my best friends,” King said. Bino was with him now. And, like the others, Bino was alone with the Corgi, as if every soul was meant to be a solitary witness to this drama. “I had taken the keys. Dad would never let them go, he didn’t want anyone to run away. We were always…locked up. He was really drunk on the night we had escaped. He had beaten Helias even harder than usual. I decided right there and then that I couldn’t let it happen again. So I stole the keys. I thought they would thank me…”

Joel looked at the cat. He nodded frantically.
The right side of his face was swollen and purple.

Joey felt his knees wobbling. He started crying as well.
King looked at the dark asphalt. “They only wanted to vent their hatred on me.”
“But…why? You helped them.”

“No one comes here at night,” Joel said, trying his hardest to keep his voice in check, least it irritated them further. “It’s safe. Humans-I mean, a-adults! They are scared of this place at night. No one will get you. I swear, believe me, please!”
For sure, pedestrians had disappeared. Cars were a rare occurrence. The windows were closed, as if the house-dwellers were too afraid to look out… And, best of all, no scents of packs or prides, not even a whiff.
Ringo grinned. “Heh, all the better. Must be something with the local crime rate. Human things.”
Honcho nodded to the other dog. “Let some of these junkies come: We’ll make some easy money. Good job, pup,” he said to Joel. “You earned some leftovers, like the ones ‘Dad’ would throw in our faces. When he felt good.”
Joel just nodded, just happy that he wouldn’t have to sleep with an open eye. Again.
Helias pointed at a dark alley. “Let’s try there.” She pulled Joel with her.
The alley was narrow and roofed. Perhaps, it was part of another structure, decades ago. Right now, it looked like a homeless’ paradise,…with a back exit on a garden/junkyard behind a metallic, rusty gate. “Perfect. In case of emergency, it will be easy to climb our way out.” She looked at Joel. “And if you can’t make it, too bad. But hey, you may make it home, hm?”
Honcho huffed. “Tss. We could better leave him here anyway. It’s been a week, and no cop came after us. Let’s face it, guys: The pup’s no longer useless now that we have a place to stay. And his daddy is not going to ransom him if we asked.”
Helias’ paw relaxed. Immediately, Joel slipped from her grasp. He sat down, feeling tired as if he had walked for ages, too tired to escape. He massaged his aching wrist, ignoring the pangs from his stomach. Right now, even the idea of trash sounded tasty. He was thirsty. Why couldn’t this be just a bad dream?
But he was quite awake…and even more so as Ringo grabbed him by the shirt’s collar and lifted him up.
The dog’s right paw flexed in a fist…it opened…flexed again… “You know, pup: It would be ill-mannered to leave you without a last memento. Just like ‘Dad’ loved to send us to sleep in his own special way. And you, ‘dear friend’ would just stay in a corner, watching at a distance like the coward you were!” He raised his fist.

King was sitting down now. He was rocking at the feet of Fino, his eyes glued to the dark surface. “I was a kid,” he said in a strangled voice. Then it turned into a twisted hypnotic chant. “I was a little kid. Martin had ran away, abandoned me. I needed him and he had left me. Daddy would beat and kick Honcho, and Ringo, and Helias…and they had fangs and claws and they didn’t even couldn’t defend themselves. They couldn’t defend me. What could I do? What could I do? What could I do…”

*fup!* A sound, like…something had landed behind them. A cat?
And then came two things.
The growl was the first. A low, rumbling sound like nothing the three former pets had ever heard. Something that made them immediately forget about the little human in favor of primal fear.
And before they turned the wind brought the smell.
Predators!
In the dark, their shapes were indistinguishable, shadows moving in shadows… But when a lightning struck in the distance, the three pets and the human desired to have stayed in the dark.
A second lightning confirmed it wasn’t an hallucination: The three things were enormous, hulking masses of muscles and sinews, walking on all fours like ancestral ferals. Two ash-coated rottweiler mixes, a male and a female, and a second male of the same breed, but large as death and black like the cosmic void itself. The lightning made their eyes shine like fiery stones.
“Well, well, well,” said the female.
“Hello, food,” said her striped brother.
“Welcome to our hunting grounds,” said the big male.

“I remember now,” King said, his eyes blinking. “I was thinking…’Funny, bears who walk softly as cats’.”
Fido was mesmerized. He knew what was coming, it was in the report.
But no cold words could convey…the fear, the horror, the…ancestral terror coursing through one’s veins, igniting them like fire, to make one run away, and at the same time freezing your muscles like liquid ice.
He could only think, Why hadn’t they found the cat?

Joel was all but forgotten. Priorities had drastically changed. Honcho, Ringo and Helias were just stepping back, calculating how could they make it out alive. If they could make it out alive: They were hungry, had eaten poorly in the latest days, they were tired.
These…monster dogs looked fit like a diabolical cross-species between dogs and bears. They were strong and fit. They moved like expert killers. They smelled confident in their success.
And on top of that, escape without knowing where to go would just mean ending up into the hands of the humans…perhaps back to Joel’s place, if not into a gas chamber.
Ok, which didn’t look so bad a perspective, given the present situation.
Helias was just ready to bolt…when she felt a weight pressing against her legs.
Joel. The kid was hugging her, literally clinging to her, his face pressing against her flank.

“I…I guess I can understand now what Sasha would feel in regard to her Dad,” King said. “I felt the same, at that moment. They were my friends, they would protect me. I loved them, despite it all. They weren’t bad, it was dad’s fault for…making them bad.”
And then he felt the arms of his litter hugging him, protectively.

Helias hugged Joel, as if wanting to protect him. “When I tell you, run away. Don’t…” she shook her head. “Don’t look back. Promise me.”
The kid shook his head no.
“Joel…”
Honcho and Ringo exchanged a look. They wanted to scream at her to run away…but they couldn’t leave her behind, abandon her. They couldn’t, not after suffering all of this and coming out of it alive. No.
The black male licked his lips. “Don’t you worry about him, kitty: You tasty morsels will be our pick, not him.”
“Humans don’t care about a bunch of dead strays,” the female at his left said.
“But they care for their peers. Too much trouble going after them,” the male at the right said.
“You may stay or run, whelp,” the male said. “Doesn’t matter…”
It was then that everything went dark. Pitch black.
King was again in the company of the other dogs. He kept rocking, all huddled against himself. “I still can’t remember it. I only know that when I woke up, I was at the hospital. I was in shock, I wouldn’t speak to anyone. I had no IDs on me. And only as of recently I discovered that dad, to save money, had me visited by non-certified physicians. There were no traceable dental records, X-rays, nothing. I was already out of the system. And I was terrified to get back in there…”
The darkness dissipated. King stood there. There was no longer trace of emotions in his voice, a robot might have well replaced him. “I brought them to their death. I killed them. That’s why I wanted to forget. I killed them. Traitor. I’m sorry. I’m sorry for everything. I’m sorry for existing. Bad human. Bad. Bad. Bad…” he stood up, wobbling, looking completely drained of all forces.
“Papa..?” Rook said, starting to reach out for him.
King collapsed! Like a marionette whose strings had been suddenly cut out, he went down.
“DADDY!” His daughters bent over him, as their father’s still figure…just as it started to slowly fade away.
Everyone rushed to the scene. The litter was trying to hold to him, but already the corgi’s figure had grown unsubstantial as well. Rook and his sisters were whimpering pitifully. “You’re not bad, you’re not bad. You’re our daddy, please. What will we do without you?”
Bino growled to Mod. “Bring him back, dang it! I don’t care what he is, do your miracle thing or else—“
Mod shook his head. “He surrendered. By his own free will, he let go of his existence. Not even the highest powers could do anything for him, once he’s gone.”
The beast laughed. “NGAHAHAHA! What? A moment ago you looked ready to put him in my jaws yourselves!” Its body twisted again…and it did twist. Under the others’ eyes, at the point where the spear was impaling it, the flesh started…to split.
Teoxihuitl knew what was going to happen, and lifted his weapon. He went and stood, crouched for fight, between the canine family and the monster who was now standing up. “Everyone get ready. Defend King at any cost, do you hear me?!”
Everyone did as instructed. “Defend what?” Joey asked frantically. “He’s almost a goner and we are a total target for…them?”
“Trust the humans!” Was the jaguar warrior’s cryptic answer.
Now, instead of one two-headed beast, there were two assassin monsters, one drooling fire, the other acid.
And this time, they wasted no time in words as their targets were all in one place and vulnerable
They spewed gushes of destruction!

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Tue Jul 09, 2013 10:19 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
NO KING DONT!!!!!!!!!!
YOU HAVE SO MUCH TO LIVE FOR!!!!!!!!!!!!
BAILEY, YOUR PUPS, FOX.
NOT TO MENTION THAT IF YOU DIE BINO WON'T EXPERIENCE THE TORTURE THAT COMES FROM KNOWING HIS WORST ENEMY'S ULTIMATE SECRET BUT NOT BEING ABLE TO TELL ANYONE!!!!!!!!
THINK ABOUT BINOS TORTURE!!!!!!!!!!

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Tue Jul 09, 2013 11:13 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
That REALLY is going to change a lot of things concerning Joel/King. Fino probably won't interfere because being a marty stu would ruin the drama.

Even as strays, I never thought the same Whiteman Killer Dogs lived long enough to seek revenge from Joel's childhood to the renovation of the Haunted Mansion.

Is there any reason the one who attacked Antares was changed from male to female? :?

This also changed the mood concerning Argos's attempt to protect King from the Robinson pets during the Prideland arc. :cry:

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
kavviyenta wrote:
That REALLY is going to change a lot of things concerning Joel/King. Fino probably won't interfere because being a marty stu would ruin the drama.

Even as strays, I never thought the same Whiteman Killer Dogs lived long enough to seek revenge from Joel's childhood to the renovation of the Haunted Mansion.

Is there any reason the one who attacked Antares was changed from male to female? :?

This also changed the mood concerning Argos's attempt to protect King from the Robinson pets during the Prideland arc. :cry:

In RENMANTS OF THE AMERICAN NOMADS, Sabrina stated that the average lifespan of a feral cat/dog goes up to 15 years, and that would make a point for you... But let's just say that in our case we got three out-of-average dogs. And though I have not explicitly stated it, they were in their prime when their first meeting with Joel occurred.

HECK! Just great, in my hurry I had forgotten that it was a boy! Now I must correct.
Thanks for noticing, your memory is definitely better than mine :oops: :oops: :oops:
EDIT - Corrected with proper genders. Thanks, Kavy!

Oh, and get ready for another surprise about THAT one last observation. ;)

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
7.
Haichiko Mercy, Babylon Gardens

“He looks so…peaceful,” Peanut said, looking through the ICU room window at the inert figure of Bino. One paw was leaning against the thick glass, the other unconsciously fidgeting with his harness. The Canadian Pointer mix chuckled. “Heh, this is the fourth time I've ever seen him that way.”
Standing next to him, her arm embracing his flank, Grape nodded. “I count two, myself. The second lasted five minutes before he went back to his old ranting self.
“Five minutes?” Peanut looked surprised. “Wow, that’s a lot! What was he doing?”
“Believe me, you don’t want to know.” The lavender cat sighed. “Funny, he’s been here so many times, but this is the first in that…room. By now, one would think he’s indestructible.”
Peanut drew Grape to him. “Would you rather go home? I know that this could be more…disturbing to you than to others.”
She shook her head. Yes, she could still see Peanut laying in one of those five beds, with her never leaving him, staying there by his side, day by day, night after night, deciding that she just couldn’t go on if he—
Grape let go in short gasps the breath she had been unconsciously holding. “No. Everyone had come see you during your coma. I won’t let myself be scared into a corner like a wee kitty. Not to mention that…that His Majesty there,” she looked back at Bino “would never pass the occasion of demean all catkind on that account.”
“Hey,” Peanut said, nuzzling her. “You’re still my kitten, jellybelly. Always will be.”
She tenderly nuzzled his spouse back. “Hmm, naked neck. With that, you’ll always be right,” she said. Small talk, anything to keep herself distracted from the rage that was burning inside of her.
Hurting innocents to prove a political point… Grape used to think that her former owners were bad humans, but this..!
Did you want to scare us? Bend us? Her left fist contracted, her claws pricking her palm. Close, but no cigar: If you feel so scared by your cute slaves earning their due rights, then we’ll make sure you’re RIGHT—
“Ah, guys?”
“GAH!” Grape jumped. Only the fact that this wasn’t the place or the time to snap kept her from making a meal out of the Bigglesworth holding a tablet –and it didn’t matter that by now their names were known, it was still impossible to tell them. “What’s the matter..?”
“Butch. There’s the human Lundberg on TV, in case you wanted to know her decision…about…” the Siamese cat looked at the glass. “Poor Blanche, only dog lover among us.” He handed her the tablet.
Grape raised the volume. And there it was, the woman giving an interview to Alistair Katt, the feline reporter from KPET news and known activist for civil rights.
“…And I can assure you, Mr. Katt, and whomever is listening, that I will not retire from the run to Mayor of River Ridge. I called this interview because today there have been rumors of a murder attempt at the expense of five dogs from Babylon Gardens.” The woman slowly shook her head. “Such is not the case: Doctors confirmed it was a case of food poisoning, a most unfortunate accident.”
Alistar didn’t sound convinced, though. “An accident, which brought you and the GMF Unlimited founding partners to gather at the Haichiko Mercy, where they are hospitalized.”
Gabriella nodded. “Mr. Foster has a personal interest in those dogs, Mr. Katt. He knows them, and just yesterday they performed a concert in favor of my campaign. So, yes, I too am interested in their welfare, and so is Mr. Milton, and of course Mr. Gottschalk, who is investing a lot in this campaign as it is well known. But, I must be honest on that, police have not ruled out the possibility of criminal attempt. They are investigating.”
Alistar frowned in puzzlement. “But didn’t you just say..?” He left the phrase open.
“I’m sorry, I should have been more clear: The dogs’ owners pressed formal charges against anonymous. Police are investigating as part of protocol, but I really don’t think something will come out of this. Because…” and here she looked at the camera, in that way that seemed to drill into the spectator’s mind. “Because it would mean that there are people out there, people who wouldn’t hesitate to harm our best friends, our most loyal companions, just for a political point. The kind of people I live to fight, so don’t think that I would desist in front of your cowardice!”
Alistair seemed impressed. If she was lying – like almost all politicians did – then she was good. Plus, she had neatly covered herself by both sides, either this ‘attempt’ thing was true or not.
The cat patted his thigh. “Speaking of Mr. Keene Milton, what’s his position in this political game, now that he’s no longer the richest pet in the world—“
“I am sorry for interrupting you, but he isn’t quite out of the game yet, as he and his siblings got still enough personal funds to play an important part in the Gottschalk-Milton-Foster Unlimited.”
“Oh. And how much of those funds, if I may be indiscreet?”
“You may: The legitimate share Henry Milton left to his ferrets amounts to 10 million dollars. For each of his pet ferrets at the moment of his demise. They invested the largest share (no pun intended) of that money into the GMF. I am confident they will recoup in short time with due net gains.”
---
Milton Wolves house

“Why those faces?” Rock asked to the wolves.
The pack looked frozen in place as if TV had turned into Medusa.
Pit scoffed. “Yeah, we’re left with some spare change, considering that we have given almost everything to this partnership.”
“Buh…” Miles said.
---
Milton Manor

“How unfortunate,” Calvin Sugary said.
“Those…things…” Celia was mouthing like a fish out of air. “They own sixty million dollars?! Why, that filthy, backstabber, old—“ she forced herself to stay calm. A vein was visibly pulsing on her brow. “I’ll bet it that it’s ‘unfortunate’! They just landed on their feet with enough to plan a takeover of our firm!” But she had to admit it, a part of her admired Uncle Henry for foreseeing this. Crazy animal lover as he was, he knew how to plan ahead. Curse him.
“I wasn’t talking about that,” Calvin said. “Her words mean that either she is a more determined politician than you had suspected, or that my…strategy has been discovered.”
Thomas started to break in a cold sweat. “But she just said that—“
Calvin stood up. “One reason I am still in the business, Mr. Milton, is that I always plan for the worst scenario. And this could be the case. So, since this mission is aborted anyway for what its purposes were concerned, I will be needing to leave these premises. But don’t you worry, I made sure you and your…allies are not involved. Even if they had neutralized the Prevex in the soda, they cannot have collected enough proof to—“
At that moment, there came the doorbell’s ring.
Celia looked at her brother. “Thomas…Didn’t we have a front gate?”
He nodded.
“And wasn’t it always closed?”
He nodded again.
The doorbell rang again. They had secured the whole premises in record time, turning it into a security fortress. Any unauthorized access would’ve activated the alarms—
Celia mouthed a terrifying curse, followed by the name of the only one who could’ve overridden the protocols from the house. “Volant!”
Celia ran to the video entryphone. When she activated it, she saw the nightmare come true.
River Ridge’s DA, Alex Konstantin, was at the door, in the company of Babylon Garden’s Chief of Police Horace Norton, and the K-9 Unit in full number! And every single one of them looked ready to draw blood!
“They can’t know you’re here!” Thomas said. “Can they?”
Calvin nodded. “I made absolutely sure—“
“Yeah, like you were sure they couldn’t find a cure!” Celia interrupted him. “And they have their accursed dogs with them, we can’t even tell them you were never here! And why are you smiling? There’s nothing funny about this!”
Calvin was indeed smiling, as if the stress that was consuming their guests was a refreshing show.
They rang again. Thomas kept looking at the window, as if wanted to try and jump through it.
Calvin sighed. He took his phone. His voice was still perfectly smooth and controlled. “Listen, please go and open the door before they break it down. I’ll deal with them. I told you: You will not be involved, trust me.”
Celia left the room, in time to throw him a last glance and see him talking with a ‘Mr. Nelson’…

Alex rang one last time. He waited, then motioned to a policeman holding a battering ram. “We gave them a fair warning. Guys, don’t be gentle.”
The policeman nodded. He lifted the ram, pulled it back…And the door opened, revealing Celia. Before she could even speak, the DA thrust a folded paper in her hands. “Celia Thomas, this is a search warrant for your property. We have reason to believe you and Thomas Milton were instrumental in the attempted pet murder of King Lindberg, Fino Sparks, Fido Byron, Bino Costner and Joey Parker.”
Celia read the paper –or, rather, started to read it before she was rudely pushed away by Sturm. The big black dog sniffed carefully at the air. “Their scents are here, Sir!” he growled.
“Get her!” Norton growled like a dog, himself. In a moment, the woman was handcuffed. She didn’t even dare to protest. This stupid plan had backfired like a 4th of July firework show. She couldn’t justify it in the least—
“Gentlemen, I think you are making a mistake,” a calm voice said, drawing everybody’s attention.
Calvin and his cat, Hobbes, were there, on the salon’s threshold. The man dressed impeccably, with a jacket hanging from his arm. Even Hobbes looked all fluffed up neat and nice-smelling. “Please, let’s keep this on a civil level. My clients weren’t aware of my…private activities.”
To her honor, Celia hadn’t made it so far in life without a touch of improvisation. She was fast to catch the ball. She even gave the DA a resentful look as she said, “So, you were looking for our pet therapist? Yes, we called him to help our poor Volant. Just recently, we called Animal Control because he made us think that he had slaughtered his friend. We couldn’t just let that go! And what’s with these absurd charges?! Norton, you and your mutts are so going to pay--”
“Please, ma’m, no further words shall be necessary. I am sorry for causing any undue distress to you.” Calvin walked to the police forces waiting for him, as if they were old pals.
A moment before someone could put their hands or paws on him, he handed out a smartphone to Konstantin. “Sir, my lawyer would like a word with you.”
---
Haichiko Mercy

“What are your plans for when they wake up?” Peanut asked Fox.
Both dogs were standing in the restroom, both splashing their faces with water.
Fox rubbed his face dry and turned to his friend. “Heh, whatever my plans could be, I guess they’ll come after the girls let go of their mates. But, you know, I would just like a private thing. And you don’t need to follow me around, Peanut. I appreciate that you want to help, but…I can make it. I won’t give in to despair, King would hate me for that. And Bailey doesn’t need other worries right now. Hm?” He gave the dog a tired smile. Dog, it felt as if this thing were going for days and not a few hours. Humans were optimist…or was it just a pretense? Something to say to anguished friends and relatives—
Alarms! A beeping sound that grated on Fox’s already stressed nerves. He knew it even before he heard the PA saying it. For a horrible moment, the Husky thought he had just called it.
“…Blue! Code Blue at ICU 2! Doctor Stanwick at ICU 2…”

Peanut and Fox were out of the restroom the moment the staff was running into the ICU room with the crash cart. Bailey and Bill were standing near the entrance, the man holding her tight.
Fox’s heart sunk. This couldn’t be true, this couldn’t be happening! He barely paid attention to the fact that now Peanut was holding him. He didn’t notice he was baying desperately King’s name…
Grape could understand every single, neverending second of that torment, as her eyes were morbidly glued to the monitor’s flatlines.
Stanwick’s voice sounded as if muffled, echoing, as he said, just like another doctor had said while trying to save Peanut, “…Set to 200…Clear!”
King’s body arched…

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Fri Jul 12, 2013 11:30 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
ZOE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
WE NEED THAT DIMENSIONAL PORTAL FIXED YESTERDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'M ON IT [name withheld]!!!!!!!!
YOU JUST KEEP PRAYING TOO THE STATUS QUO GOD!!!!!!!!!!

CAN DO!!!!!
*gets on knees*
OH DEAR GOD OF STATUS QUO!!!!!!!
PLEASE LET KING LIVE!!!!!!!!
GRANT HIM SAFE PASSAGE BACK TO THE MORTAL RELEM!!!!!!
PLEASE BE REAL SO I'M NOT PRAYING FOR NOTHING!!!!!!

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Val would never let King die. The fans would make him suffer the same fate.

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Sat Jul 13, 2013 3:21 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
RandomGeekNamedBrent wrote:
Val would never let King die. The fans would make him suffer the same fate.

ouch... :shock:

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
8.
Limbo

What was one, now were two.
A male and a female Rottweiler mixes, with striped, ash-grey coats. Muscled monsters standing on all fours, whose unstopping hatred had kept them suspended between the celestial and the nether realms.
Hatred they were going to vent at the expenses of anyone coming from Babylon Gardens, that same place where in life they had suffered since puppyhood. Born to be killers, died to be such forever!
Now their mouths spewed fire and acid. Their targets were in front of them. They couldn’t miss, they weren’t going to concede any pity!

In the moment the monsters opened their jaws, the three dogs who were going to be King’s future were crouching protectively around their father, although there seemed to be left little to protect as King looked more and more like a shade about to fade away forever.
But it didn’t matter. Fino, Fido, Bino and Joey stood around King’s litter, ready in turn to protect him to the end. They only exchanged a glance. If one went, all of them would go. United to the end!
The first line of defenders – Teoxihuitl the jaguar warrior, Mod the guardian angel and Morrigan the ghost cat – were ready and in position to take the worst of the attack.
‘Trust the humans!’ the jaguar had said. Bino would have trusted even Peanut, right now!

The monster dogs spewed her acid and his fire! Destruction assured!

“Love you bros,” Bino said.
“Love you papa,” Rook, Lira and Mackenzie said to King as the horizon was filled with fire and poison…
And just then, a voice like thunder, filling every corner of the Limbo’s grey realm, said, “Charge to 200…CLEAR!”
It wasn’t a barrier that broke the monster dogs’ attack, this time: It was two pillars of pure lightning, twin charges raining from the grey sky! Lightning that dug a deep trench as they exploded between attackers and defenders. Lightning that propelled the Whiteman dogs several feet away, the creatures yelping with pain.
Fido rubbed his eyes, his mind still divided between awe, gratitude or what else… “What was that?”
“Papa!” Rook yapped happily. All four brothers turned to see…King, sitting up, looking back in good shape –for the soul of a comatose body, that is. He too looked surprised, as he flexed his paws to make sure they were there. “Wow…”
“Sinus rhythm. We got him.” And with those new words, a bed appeared out of nowhere. A hospital bed, surrounded by humans wearing scrubs and white coats, all of them busy over the Corgi dog laying over, unconscious.
“Ok, we’re bringin’ him back,” Doctor Stanwick was saying, then he started giving out orders.
And everyone knew what was going to happen now. King hugged his litter one last time. “It’s going to be alright now, guys. The humans did it. Thank you for helping your grumpy daddy. I—Aw, shoot!” he barked as tendrils of light grabbed him and, as if in a version of the ‘warpspeed effect’ he was brought back into his body.
“So long for the ‘long farewell’ cliché,” Fino said, shaking his head.
---
Haichiko Mercy

King opened his eyes, his senses assaulted by the hospital smells and sounds, whereas a moment before his body had been into Bino’s house. He looked with gratitude at the medical staff, glad that in this world there was a species capable of doing these little great miracles. “H’lo, Doc,” he groaned. “’Sup?”
“KINGY!” in a moment, he found a sweet, heavy weight all over his body! His mouth was filled with the deepest kiss he had ever experienced from his mate.
Fox was there a second later, taking care of kissing his face as thoroughly as possible, both huskies' tails wagging like crazy.
---
Limbo

“Nngg…” The killer dogs stood up with trembling legs. “What…was..?” the male asked.
“That was his fate,” said yet a new voice, the voice of someone standing in front of them.
Both monstrous ferals looked at the newcomer. “Who are you?”
A coyote. A coyote bearing a tribal attire and body paintings. “I am Firebrand Deathwalker, of the Chemuza pack. I am here because this charade must end, restless spirits.”
The dogs grinned. “You are kidding, right?” the female asked. “We have just started.”
“Good!” the voice of Dr. Rozen came from the world of the living. “Now we can try it on the others as well! Inject 50cc, Ted.”
Now the other four beds appeared, one by one, as the humans started treating the dogs for the last time. At the same moment, shiny needle marks appeared on the arms of the soul. The first tendrils of light started emerging from the beds, toward their rightful souls…
The roar from the beasts seemed to shake the whole Limbo. “NOOOO!!! I WON’T LET YOU! YOU ARE OURS!!” They spewed destruction…but this time, the jets of fire and acid broke against a luminescent shield the coyote had casted without so much of a sweat.
“I said, enough!” Firebrand said in the most solemn tone. “Rules allowed you to fight against them as long as their souls were disembodied and lost in this realm. Now that their fate is in the hands of the humans, your rights over them are forfeit. You are only ghosts trying to harm the living.”
“And we can do that just as well!” The female said... Then her attention turned to the four canine souls as they were ‘warped’ back into their bodies. The window between the worlds was gone a moment later.
And yet, this didn’t seem to really upset the Whiteman dogs. “This is only a minor setback,” the male growled. “We will never stop, we will never rest. Argos may have found peace, not us!”
The female chuckled. “We will be at ‘peace’ only when we’ve made sure every guilty soul in Babylon Gardens is eradicated from their world! Soo, what are you going to do shaman? Exorcise us?”
In answer, Firebrand produced something from the medicine bag he was carrying at his waist. He showed it to the monster dogs.
A pawful of…ash. “Áńt’į,” Firebrand said.
The dogs started backing down, their hackles raised, their bodies speaking fear.

“What’s that?” Morrigan asked to Teoxihuitl.
The jaguar frowned. “The Corpse Poison: Ancient, powerful Navajo witchcraft that only a Deathwalker can perform in all its aspects. It requires the ashes of the deceased to work at its peak. But I don’t understand: it’s supposed to inflict a curse…”

“This is your last chance,” Firebrand said, advancing of a step for each backward step from the dogs. “At this stage you can still choose between peace and damnation. But I will not offer you another occasion to wander in the in-between realm to haunt the innocents.”
“Then do your worst, shaman,” the female growled. “We gave our lives to exact our vengeance on Babylon Gardens. Do you think your magic will really stop us?”
Firebrand looked sad as he brought his paw at the height of his mouth. “So be it: I curse you.” And then, he blew –a delicate current that made the ashes whirl and trace elegant patterns as they deposited themselves on the bodies of the Whiteman dogs.
The creatures howled, roared, their bodies twisted as they merged back into a single, fiery black mass. And they kept whining and growling, while their new body kept growing in size…
…sprouted appendages from its back, appendages which grew into wings…
…sprouted a tail covered with thorns…
…sprouted claws that easily racked into the rocky ground…
…and all the while two snouts elongated, and their fangs with them, snapping and producing sparks and flames with every snap…
…and finally, bull-like horns came to complete that new, demonic portrait! The beast roared its triumph!

“I don’t think it looks good. Pun intended,” Mod said from behind Morrigan’s neck, who in turn was ‘eep’ing from behind the jaguar.

The thing breathed with the sound of a furnace. A thing that had nothing to do with what once was two mortal dogs. “Thank you for being a fool!” both heads said with the voice of a roaring blaze. “I never felt so powerful and alive. I will thank you by taking your life first, so that you won’t see your precious ‘friends’ suffering!”
“You will not do so. Not here,” said someone behind it. A voice as cold as the Ice Lake itself, the voice that could shatter a soul.
Difficult that a demon could actually look funny in its surprise…but that was exactly the case with the beast, as it turned. “My Lord Belial! Please, it will be only a question of—“
Belial. Lord of the Netherworld. His red cape wrapped his body down to his toes, his paw holding a golden trident, a pentagram medallion hanging from his neck. “Rules cannot be broken. I granted you access to Limbo so that you could succeed in accordance to those rules... But now, failure or success are no longer important. You have chosen to be a demon, you belong to my realm now.” The slate-colored snout curved in a smile. “Worry not, though. I have a position for you already. Your strength and hatred will make for a good General…Barghest.”
“NO! It’s unfair! Those-those mortals had a Guardian Angel fighting at their side. We should be allowed to--“
"A Guardian Angel is strictly bonded with one’s fate, just as a demon can be assigned to torment a mortal’s existence if a curse is enforced… But, in your case, Barghest, there are no curses binding you to these mortals’ fates."
“Then curse them, do something—“
Belial’s eyes flashed. “Are you telling me how to do my job?”
Both heads whimpered and lowered. “No, Lord Belial.”
“Good. Because your failure upset me enough as it is already.” He gestured with his trident…and the abyss opened under the new demon’s feet! “Enjoy your punishment.”
Dozens of clawed hands and paws grabbed Barghest and pulled it down. The creature had just the time to throw a last murderous expression at its enemies while its body had almost disappeared into the rocky ground. “This is far from being over! You will suffer, that much I promi*” And then, Barghest disappeared completely. The ground rumbled shut.
Belial offered a bow to Firebrand. “Thank you for your offering, Deathwalker. You earned a favor.” Another gesture, and a portal of fire appeared behind him. He started walking into it. And just before he disappeared into it, he threw a glance…
---
D'Angelo House

…Toward Sabrina! The black cat shivered as if her soul itself had been touched by the fiery coldness.
“But your allies’ constant meddling with the mortals’ lives has disturbed the balance. So watch your back carefully: We shall meet again.” And he disappeared in a last roar of flames.
A moment later, Firebrand and the three spiritual entities emerged from the silver circle she had traced on the floor.
“Thank you so much for your help,” Tarot said. “I hope you don’t mind Morrigan bringing you back where you belong, rather than Fido.”
Teoxihuitl just smiled and nodded, before disappearing into the golden needle. The Pomeranian bent down and put it back into its box, then handed it to the ghost.
Morrigan took it. She looked puzzled. "But...what's with this 'offering' thing?"
Sabrina started blowing off the candles at the vertexes of the pentagram. "It was the only way to make sure even the netherworld would offer us something in return for giving them a soul. Although one should be careful to collect certain favors from certain entities."
Much as Morrigan wanted to ask, she knew it wouldn't be appropriate, now. She'd ask Chocolate. "Okay, see you guys." And flew through the roof…but so didn’t the box, which fell back onto Tarot’s head. The ghost cat’s emerged from the roof, showing an apologetic grin.
Tarot pointed at the open door.
Once Morrigan had left through the correct exit, Mod sighed. “Well, this is my clue to go back to my protégée. I fear that I will have to apply for overtime from now on."
“You may come with me,” Sabrina offered. “I haven’t visited Fido yet.” The way she spoke, it sounded as if she was going to take a burden rather than celebrating…

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Last edited by valerio on Mon Sep 23, 2013 12:37 am, edited 2 times in total.



Mon Jul 15, 2013 8:49 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Hmmmmmm............
Zoe isn't going to like that the 3 days she went without sleep to get that portal fixed were for nothing.
And with how upset she got when taco night got canceled. :?
Well, wish me luck.
Also if I die, valerio gets my journal of fanfic ideas.
*walks off*
i really need to get around to actually using some of those.

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Mon Jul 15, 2013 9:54 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
If said ideas are HP related, I promise I'll make good use of them.

Oh, and just to be safe on legalese side: BELIAL (c) STU

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
*runs in room, quickly ducks to avoid thrown toaster, and slams door shut*
where did she even get the toaster anyways?
*sees post and brushes dust of clothes*
Well about a quarter of them are HP related and half of those are crossovers, sooooooooo........... Yea.
*peeks out door, ducks to avoid tranquilizer dart, then picks up dart and verifies it*
and where'd she get this brand?

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Wow I've missed so much! I just played a quick game of catch up and now there's way too much to talk about. :lol:

I'll just say this whole limbo arch has been interesting. Nice to know we didn't have to wait a whole season to meet King's pups. I just wonder if they will remember it on the side of the living. And a call back to some old villains, how fun. Just now they have hell powers. :twisted:

Keep up the good work! Good to see someone is still keeping up with their own set schedule around here.

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Tue Jul 16, 2013 3:56 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
9.
Haichiko Mercy

Outside the hospital, a crowd of pets cheered like no tomorrow at the news that the five patients had awakened and were going to be alright.
It was a sight to be seen, at least for a certain albino rat.
“You look surprised,” said the squirrel standing beside the rat on the common observation point of a tree in the parking lot.
Abner Gottschalk nodded at William, Terrace High’s mascot. “I…I had never imagined those…” he was about to say ‘animals’, but after all what was he? Stupid transformation thing!
“Big noses?” William suggested.
The rat nodded. “Them. Well, I’m surprised about this sense of…community.”
William chuckled. “I understand you, mister. Honest.”
Abner nodded. “Really?!” Was it possible that even William used to be a human? It seemed to be a trendy in this place…
“Of course! When you’re a prey species, you don’t waste time on philosophy: The big guys are just claw and teeth eager to meet your flesh.”
Abner groaned. “Guess you’re right about that.” He went back to his crowd-watching: No doubt about it, those creatures were hugging, hi-fiving, crying. All in honor of…other pets. So human.
They weren’t just mimicking their masters.
They were people, with their rights to be free in the human-based society, not animals to be ‘returned’ to the wilderness.
And, best of all, by acquiring new rights in the human-based society, in the long run they could end up turning it upside down from the inside.
Why hadn’t he thought of that before?!
“And why are you crying, now? Fino fan, too?” William asked.
Abner didn’t wipe the tears, not caring if they were of shame for what he had done in the name of his twisted self-righteousness, or tears of joy for this epiphany.
---
In a funny coincidence, inside ICU 2, a certain corgi was divided between joy and shame. He couldn’t help his pouring eyes while he hesitated to decide which emotion was predominant.
“Aw, what’s the matter, Kingy?” Bailey asked him, petting his cheek. She nuzzled against his neck. “Your eyes are so sad.”
They are because I almost let myself die because of old, terrible memories. Because I let my fears about us prevail… But then his eyes went to the belly of the Siberian/Alaskan Husky sitting beside him.
Yes, King had fears to sell in the lot, but he had also more, much more reasons to carry on. His paw went to Bailey’s tummy and his stubby fingers brushed the thick fur as if afraid to break the skin. Even if he knew she was pregnant before she told him, just hearing her saying it, her face so…luminous, filled with the most primal joy was all worth coming back to her.
And I was about to abandon her in the name of my fears. Just like Martin had done with me… Heh, must be a family thing.
“I’m sure there will be more than one,” Bailey said. “You’ll end up too busy to put yourself in troubles.” She kissed his snout.
King wished he was a cat just to purr out loud. “I can’t wait to take the job. You’ll have to wrestle me for their attention.” Limbo adventure or not, he knew he’d never spend a minute away from his pups…
“You are going to be the best daddy ever,” Fox said, distracting him from any residual bad thought. “I’m so proud of you, buddy. Just don’t give us such a scare anymore, deal?”
King nodded. “I expect you to come and kick me back awake, in case. Humans take it too slow.” He let himself be hugged by his wife and his best friend.
“Is there room for me, too?” Bill said from the threshold.
A new wave of excitement coming from the other four dog patients filled the room. King had many reason to find it weird to call his owner ‘Daddy’, but he gave Bill a honest-to-dog big smile anyway as he extended his short arms in an inviting gesture.
Despite it all, after all, he had missed a human dad. He had missed feeling part of a family, being loved without reservations…
And when he found himself at the center of that group hug he couldn’t help but sobbing openly as a little kid joined him in that precious moment. Family…

Last time Bino had seen Dad smiling like that, hugging him as if wanting to squeeze the dear life out of him, it had been many years ago. Christmas, that was when. Five years ago. A tree branch had collapsed into the garage roof. Jeff had no money to spend on repairs and his already sour humor had noticeably dropped.
Bino had just been elected President of the Good Ol’ Dogs Club. His first act under that title had been gathering his peers, the hardware, and work on the repair while Dad was off to work. When Jeff was back, he had been welcomed by the sight of a crud wood patchwork covering the hole, the nails half the way in and all bent, each panel placed like a piece of a crazy jigsaw puzzle –and yet, it had served its purpose, and the branch had even been cut into pieces for the fireplace. The young dogs who had worked hard were found in the garage, their tools still in their small paws.
When Bino had awakened, he had deserved the best attentions and treats he could ask for.
Today, it was just like then. Jeff looked so happy that he was almost shining of his own light. “Welcome back, son. And…” he gulped down tears. “Ah, I…I knew you were too stubborn just to let go your old man, eh?”
Bino put up a mock snotty expression. “I just knew this place couldn’t go on without me. Not to mention that I wouldn’t let Max get all the treats…” He looked around. “But where is he?” He frowned. “So typical of him to stay at home while I am hereEEEEEEE—“ His voice turned into a terrified squeal as a thing suddenly emerged from under the sheets, like a monstrous Jack-in-the-box! Bino hugged Jeff tight. “Daddy help me please!” he whined like a puppy… Then he saw the thing pulling off his Halloween mask, his black-furred body bent in two with laugh.
“Maxwell, that wasn’t fun!” Jeff scolded the cat. Little Bosco, too, was laughing and holding his tummy. Sasha held a discreet giggle in place.
Bino was sure he was going to fall into a coma again. “Wait until I get you—you—Ack!” And then he found himself held into his housemate’s hug.
“I was going crazy already, stupid mutt.” His voice was actually trembling, something Bino had never heard from that feline braggart. Not even when he had let go of Grape in favor of Peanut.
The dog clumsily returned the hug. “So, nothing new there eh?”
Max was…purring? There went another novelty. “Watch it, remember that I can break into your room…” He then stopped speaking.
But Bino’s attention, by then, was already diverted by the sight of the Lindberg family. Whatever was passing through his mind, he kept to himself, for now –and also because the general moment of tenderness was broken by the sudden scream coming from Joey’s bed.
Although it hadn’t been him to scream. “And it took you a near-death experience to take a decision?!” Then came the unmistakable sound of a slap.

Despite the burning sensation, Joey was gesturing his wife to lower her voice. “Blanchie my dear sugar cube, there’s no need to get upset. I knew you wanted a litter—“
The Bigglesworth cat was steaming, her arms crossed at her chest. “Oh, yes? What gave you the idea? The posters I hung up in our room? The kitten photos I slipped under your pillow? The calendar I marked with Day-Glo?!”
Joey was now blushing horribly. “B-but, coffe bean, I—“
“Say it again!” came the peremptory command. “And make sure the others hear it! Now!”
Joey cleared his throat. He couldn’t imagine a thing that could calm his beating heart. But he also felt the greatest wave of joy as he repeated what he had just said in the spur of the moment. He reached out to take Blanche’s paw in his and said, “Blanche Bigglesworth, will you have a litter that we can raise together?”
The change of humor was immediate like a speedlight dawn. The Siamese cat hugged the dog and almost put him on his feet. “YES!” she caterwauled, making ears and glasses tremble. Then she dropped her husband and turned. “And while we’re at it and before you change your mind…” She walked to Max and grabbed him by his collar.
The poor cat knew already what was in store for him, so when he heard her saying, “Maxwell Costner, I want your kittens! Any other answer than ‘yes’ shall be met by an angry Bigglesworth clan. Questions?”, he knew he hadn’t any. In fact, the idea of becoming father, when everyone he knew was experiencing that joy… The idea of gifting the world with his descendants, much to Bino’s discomfort as well… And be part of the big family…
Not to mention that he was still looking out for a girl...
Max flashed his best conquistador grin. “Well, who am I to say no to such a beauty?”

Joey facepawlmed. “I guess I should’ve asked when we were home. Ugh.” The idea of such a gene pool was already giving him a headache.
“Are you regretting your decision already?” asked a voice behind him.
The young dog shook his head. He was smiling. “Nah. I had planned to bring her to the shelter, like Sabrina and Fido did, but…but I want them to be ours as much as possible. Like Mizar and Alcor, like Peanut and Grape—“ Then he realized that the voice was coming from his shoulder! His brain connected with the scent signals at last! His heart burst with renewed joy. “Squeak!”
His former mouse girlfriend was there, just like in the old times! It was a moment to grab her and squeeze her against his chest. “Missed you, gal!”
“Same here, big pup. Still didn’t meet someone with paws like yours.”

A similar scene was taking place between Fido and his old, tiny pal. “How did you know what happened?” The police dog asked the mouse.
“Are you kiddin’?” Spo said from the canine paws, his face showing that familiar scowl. “No, I mean it you big nose! Are you insulting me?! Just because I ain’t no brainwashed pet, should I be kept out of the loop?!”
Fido rolled his eyes –yep, good old Spo through and through. “That’s not what I meant—“
“Well,” the mouse was going on, “for your information, we still are the best when it comes to information, the Internet can blow my tail! And the only reason my beautiful mate and I didn’t show up before was that we weren’t eager to spend the time avoiding the local extermination team while waiting for you to wake up!”
“I’m happy to see you too.” Fido put Spo onto his head fur. “My, did you gain weight?”
“I got me some muscle. Must admit it, the life of the feral has its advantages. You were turning me fat.”
Fido chuckled. “Well, then why won’t you and Squeak be our guests for a while? I’m sure you’d like to be a little fat again, hm?”
Spo’s next words surprised him. “Well, to be hones we had come to see you for another reason.”
Fido frowned. “And what would that be?”
“You know, about this rumors regarding enhanced animal rights and all…” Spo sighed. “Well, would you guys at the police mind your own underground, registered secret service?”
Fido blinked, not sure he had heard it right. “Come again?”
“I’m saying that, in case this Ms. Lundberg wins, us mice of Babylon Gardens would like to join your big nose security, even become pets. And before you say no, remember that I had to work my tail off in diplomacy!”
“W-wow…” the dog didn’t know what to say.
“Too sudden, eh?”
Fido nodded slowly. “I-We are honored, Spo, but this really doesn’t depend on me. I mean, yes! I will surely vouch for you guys, but it’s Chief Norton who must take the decision, and then the Board…” Finally the stupor gave room to a smile. “But yes, thank you! I’m sure it’s a great idea! We never forgot how you found out that explosive Coppers had left.” And he thought that even the crisis at the LCG could’ve been averted, had the mice been available as guards for the conduits…
Not to mention the small maintenance jobs…and many other thing an army of small, dedicated creatures could do…
But there was something else he had to take care of, first. That nagging, constant train of thoughts that couldn’t be denied…
Fido motioned to Ryan, then took Spo and handed him out to the man. “Take care of him, please. I need to talk to the guys. And to Fox. We need to,” he added, his eyes going to the other patients.
King knew this moment was bound to happen. He gave one last peck to Bailey. “We will take a minute, okay? Don’t get stressed, we got enough emotions for one day.”
His wife nodded. Every visitor but Fox left quietly, Squeak sitting on Blanche’s shoulder.
When the door closed, Fido drew in a breath. He looked ad King with a hard stare, then at Fox.
The Husky returned the stare. “I’ll save you the questions: I knew, I’ve known since the night of the accident at Martin’s house. And yes, I have forgiven him. And no, I don’t regret it.”
Fido lowered his eyes for a moment. “And why keep it from us. From me? That he is…” he looked at the Corgi as if he was in the presence of some alien spawn.
Fox’s eyes narrowed, his tone coming dangerously close to a growl. “Exactly for that: Your reaction. I knew you would react just like your brother. And you better listen me well on this: King is a dog, and a good one at that. Whatever he was or did, he had his second chance and made the best of it. If you don’t like—“
“You can bet it I don’t like it! Dog, that…guy dognapped you and his accomplice almost killed you!”
“It’s in the past! Will you give it a break? I’m sick of you guys telling me how should I feel!”
“Oh, really?! Forgive me for being your friend and worrying for—“
“GUYS!” Bino barked, drawing their attention.
The hound was panting. “Give a moment, I still feel weak like a pup here. And both of you, stop it already, will you?” he gave a stern look to Fido. “Ok, so I am…appalled as well, to say the least, but you know what? Who the heck cares?!”
It was hard at this point to decide who was more surprised between everyone else. “Bino…” Fido started to say.
“You heard me. What are we supposed to do? Tell the whole world? Start a blog? Sell him to a TV freak show?”
“Hey!” King protested.
“Fox is right. King is…a dog. Weird as he may be, stupid as he may be, but he’s a dog. He’s got a wife, and a litter from her. And if Fox forgave him, it’s not in our right to destroy a family only because we’re rightfully scandalized.”
“I don’t think you’re really trying to help here…” King muttered.
Bino ignored him again. He looked at his brothers in the eyes, one by one. “This is not the ground for further discussion. This shall be our little secret as well. Questions?” He put in that single word all the authority he had developed in those years.
They nodded. “A bit rough at the edges,” Fino said, “But well-spoken, pup.”
Bino laid against the pillows. He looked content. “What can I say? Someone’s got to use some good sense, here.” Then he winked at Fido. “But you’re welcome to help me with a decent prank at the expenses of our weirdo, hm?”
Fido didn’t answer that. Instead, he looked at Fox. “Why didn’t you tell me? Did you really think that I would betray your trust?”
Fox lowered his ears in shame as he walked toward Fido’s bed. Then he bent over and hugged him. “Forgive me for that snap. I-I am quite protective of him, and it hurt to see that expression…” He sighed. “Well, not that I felt much different when Sabrina told me—“
Only the mention of that name renewed Fido’s scowl. “Should’ve known, of course…” And, as if those words had been a cue, the door opened, and the black cat walked into the room
A room where, all of a sudden, there were only the two of them.
“We need to talk,” Sabrina said.
Fido nodded, his mind obsessed by one thought only.
Do I really know this cat?
Do I really want to marry her?

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Last edited by valerio on Fri Jul 19, 2013 1:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Wed Jul 17, 2013 3:56 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
:shock: B-B-BINO DEFENDED K-KING!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!
:shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock:
I need a nap. *faints*

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Wed Jul 17, 2013 5:12 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Well, I've seen better lines of defense there... :lol:
But rest assured, that's a truce, not peace accomplished ;)

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Post Re: Valerio's translated fanfics
valerio wrote:
then we'll go on, don't worry. :mrgreen:


Can't wait to see what happens next. also can't believe that Peanut and Grape really have that kind of that relationship.well....i do but I didn't know that it was that deep

valerio wrote:
chapters 1 and 2 have been completed by courtesy of lightwolf. Enjoy!


hrm....i can't find much, if not no errors but, in English, it could be written a little better


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Tue Jul 23, 2013 1:43 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
You're going to see it getting worse, then, as I start writing it myself directly into Itanglish :lol: :lol: :lol:
And thank Sinder and Two Twig for putting up the basis for this wonderful relationship! :D :D :D

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
10.
The other plane (yeah, yeah, I flunked at Mystical Cartography 101, so sue me!)

For some reason, the first thing that came to Fido’s mind was that he was sorry: Sorry that this was happening in the fraction of a second, if compared to Earth’s space and time’s continuum. Sorry that what was going to be said would remain confined here.
Because Fido was angry. Angry enough to drag the black cat standing in front of him to the nearest roof and start arguing with a nice BOSE audio amplifiers set so that everyone would hear.
“Fido…” Sabrina started to say, only to be cut short by his snarl.
“You knew.” His eyes were accusing, his voice was almost trembling with fury. He was far from the portrait of the generous, sometimes stern but honest dog everyone knew. “You knew everything about King, and yet you kept it from me.”
The cat didn’t flinch, didn’t look upset, or sad…in fact, Sabrina looked perfectly in control. And it only irritated Fido the more. “That wasn’t your concern, Fido.”
The dog clenched his paw in a fist. “You are kidding, are you? Fox is my dearest friend! When Joel and Coppers dognapped him, I would’ve done everything to get to him, and…yes, even rip the guts off those…” he gulped a bitter glob of bile back into his stomach. He was panting slightly, as if the fury was causing him physical distress. “You had no right of allowing that…that…”
“King is a dog.” Again that almost unnatural detachment. She was acting as if he was only a pup barking for a stolen ball. “Pete transformed Joel to teach him a lesson, to make him see the errors of his ways. Eventually, Joel learnt that lesson. He rebuilt his life. He embraced it. And Fox was the instrument that made it possible. Their friendship is something unique and true, even deeper than you think.”
Fido thought about that –and yes, he couldn’t deny it. If someone could even help a rotten human heart to heal to such a point, that was Fox…
Not to mention what he had just seen at the hospital with his own eyes: Fox wasn't the least dubious about his feelings, he was happy as he had found a lost brother. And then there was Bailey. Weird as it was, they were expecting puppies, and Fido had seen them, seen the promise of a future.
On that account, Sabrina was right.
But even knowing it didn’t do much to quench the bitterness wrapping Fido’s soul. “You didn’t trust me, Sabrina. Just as you didn’t trust me to…prevent what had just happened.” He didn’t need to add more to that: Only a fool could think it was a case that every single piece of that tragedy, including the intervention of that coyote shaman, was the result of sheer chance. “Why did you let it happen? Do you realize how much our friends, our humans…suffered?” The first tears of frustration started to cumulate under his eyes. He wiped them with a rapid swipe of his arm. “Can you do something without causing havoc in our lives?! When…when you revealed our relationship to everyone, out of the blue, it almost caused me to be kicked out of the Force!” It was a weird feeling. He was hating himself for every spoken word, but it was as if a dam had broken: It was all coming out and it was intoxicating. “I love you, I am trying to cope with your necessities, I accept that you are…different. But I can’t see my family nearly dead when you could’ve done something!” He fell on his knees, though not really hitting anything. Tears came again, and he didn’t stop them. “Why did you let it happen?”
Sabrina crouched in front of him, her paw resting on his shoulder. This time she was smiling in a comforting way. “Because it was supposed to happen, my love. I could only…set things up so that you and the others would be rescued, but I wasn’t allowed to do more.”
Fido sniffled. He felt like a puppy as well –stupid emotional whirlwind! He felt lost, lost while walking on the game board of life. Why couldn’t he just have a normal relationship, even a strange one like Peanut’s, but where the pieces fell into their places? A relationship where your cat mate would share it all with you? How could this one be a relationship when it made him feel so lonely? “Why?” Fido kept repeating.
Sabrina lifted his chin delicately. “Because it is. Fido…” This time, something in her cool shell was creaking. “Things happen. It’s part of life, in good and bad. Yes, I could have warned you, told you everything…And after that, what?”
Fido blinked. “What do you mean?”
Sabrina sighed. “Fido, your job is dangerous. Bino’s job is dangerous. Fino will end up in trouble due to his adventurous lifestyle. Joey is mate to a Bigglesworth. And even Peanut, the sweetest of the dogs, the most peaceful of us all, almost died once and again risked his life more than once… Please,” her expression softened just like her voice. “Please, look at me and tell me you expect me and Tarot to watch over each one of you and interfere with your lives so that nothing bad ever, ever happens. Is that what you want from me?”
Was she being just condescending, or was she being serious? But in his current state, Fido just didn’t want to focus. He found himself nodding. “I don’t want anyone to be hurt.”
Her eyes told him that wasn’t the answer she was expecting. “Fido, there was a time when the Powers-to-be acted like that, and it was a time of chaos. Pacts were made, and they always ended up bad.” She hugged him, and this time he felt her trembling. He wanted so much to run a comforting paw trough her back fur, but…
I don’t love her! It came like the painful touch of a bullwhip made of ice. Had he really thought that?!
Sabrina kept talking, and her voice was a crescendo of frustration. “I could prevent you from being hurt, but then your life would lose all meaning, because I should write your life for you. You couldn’t take any decision, because you couldn’t know where they lead. Even the act of eating could constitute a danger. I—I can’t shelter you from the whole existence! And the worst thing is, you will grow old, you will die. It always ends up with death and suffering, no matter how hard you try! And those who tried to avoid death turned into something…awful!” She broke the hug and grabbed him by his cheeks, so hard that it almost hurt. “Do you think that I or Tarot enjoy our role?! That we are just playing with your lives?!”
He was realizing what she was saying. For the first time, Fido was seeing his beloved cat for who she was.
And it scared him.
She was worlds out of his league. Literally.
Sabrina let go of his face, lowered her head. “I love you more than my life, and for this love I-I tilted ancient balances. I saved you, your family and King…But other things will happen in return. That’s the way it works, when the supernatural is involved. That’s why in the ancient times the Powers-to-be of both factions decreed that Fate should be left untouched. That’s why your free will must remain such.”
Fido felt his heart stopping, for a moment. Did she actually mean—
“You were supposed to die, today. I sent Karishad to recover your fates because he is a chaotic, neutral element, so I hoped I could bend the rules in your favor without actually breaking them. It was a mistake, and there will be a price to pay…So yes, Fido: I did something. And I will do that again, for you. Because sometime I wish I could sacrifice the world to keep you safe.” After a last caress, back was the inscrutable mask. “But don’t ask me to prevent your future from happening. I couldn’t do you greater injustice. I…Can I ask you a favor?”
Fido nodded.
“Will you please stay with me? I can’t ask you to forgot everything and act as if I was…just another cat—”
Fido shook his head. “You were never just another cat! I…” he sighed, admitting the shame together with the defeat. “I need to think, I need time.” And although he didn’t see her flinch, at least he knew her well enough to know she was hurting. But he owed her that, to be honest. Marry her over a lie would hurt both of them, eventually. “You are a wonderful creature, and we owe you our lives.”
“But you don’t love me anymore.” No anger, no sadness. Just a plain statement of the facts.
“I do love you. But I am scared of you, of what your…role implies. I am afraid that one day you’ll have to…let things happen to their consequences. And I can’t just accept this ‘fate’ thing. Not now that I know.”
Her paws grabbed his. “But you knew already about me and Tarot. What changed your mind?”
This time, a cold shadow darkened his eyes. “I almost died. Fido, Fino, Joey, even King. We were there. I was there. Your plan could’ve failed and those…things…”
“Fido—“
He just exploded! Everything he had tried to keep bottled exploded as he grabbed her arms, his claws almost drawing blood. His voice became something between the growl of a wolf and a bear. “THAT WAS HELL, SABRINA! I DEVOTED MY LIFE HELPING OTHER PEOPLE AND PETS, I TRIED TO AMEND THOSE MISTAKES I DID AS A PUPPY, I BELIEVED THAT MY NATURE WAS BEING A GOOD DOG, AND THE DEMONS WERE OUT TO TAKE MY SOUL ANYWAY! TO TAKE MY BROTHERS! I SAW THEM, SABRINA! I CAN ACCEPT TO FALL ON THE LINE OF DUTY, IT’S MY JOB, BUT I DON’T WANT TO GO THERE! The hound let her go to grab his chest; his heart was beating so painfully! His other paw went to his mouth. He wouldn’t throw up in front of her as well!
“Then let me be with you!” Sabrina hugged him, despite his attempts to push her away. She was openly crying now too. “No mor—No one should see what you saw, no one can face certain things and stay unscathed! Fido, please, now more than ever you need me, just like I need you! You can’t fight this horror alone, or it will turn you into…oh…”
“What?” He was barely aware of her paw running through his head, then his muzzle. “What is it?”
“Your fur.” She delicately plucked a hair from his head tuft, handed it out to him.
It was white.
Fido looked at his paws, as if fearing his whole body had turned the same color. “Great. Now I must look like my grandpa. He was a hunting dog, and he was so happy to work with his Dad, that is, until he discovered he was a poacher and so he taught his litter to respect the laws…” he started chuckling insanely. Yeah, a hysterical was just what he needed now…
“Want me to slap you?” Sabrina asked.
The chuckle turned into a roar of a laugh. Fido’s body started shaking, tears ran copious. But when the laugh became a long wail of sorrow, he let himself into the arms of his precious cat, hugging to her as if she was the only shelter against all evil –which, in a way, she was. “Please,” he said with an exhausted voice. “I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I’m sorry for those horrible things I said and thought! I love you so much! Please, tell me I will not go there. Make it so. Help me. Please…” He felt each stroke of her paw against his neck like refreshing water.
“The Powers are very lenient with our kind, my love,” Sabrina said. “You are not a bad dog, there are no dogs worth such punishment.”
“B-But…Barghest…” Funny, he had never known the name of those killer dogs. He felt sorry for that, too.
“They made a choice. They preferred their vengeance over their own souls.” She nuzzled him, purring. “You are worth your place up there, believe me. Hell’s management had only tried to apply some obsolete morality clauses, but I promise you, you will make a great guardian angel.”
Fido showed a timid smile. “Really?”
Sabrina nodded. “I know you, silly dog: You won’t stop watching over everyone, it’s not in your nature. Pixel will appreciate that.”
At the mention of that name, he felt his guts twist. He had been so lost in his self-pity, he had forgotten about the kitten—*pinch* “Ow!” he said, when he felt his snout sting. “Why?!”
“Because you’re not a self-centered, stupid mutt.”
Fido blushed. “Did you read my mind?”
“Yes, and I will do so again if it serves to calm you down, Fido Byron. Do you love me?”
“Yes.” It came naturally. As if everything that had just happened didn’t really matter.
And that was the truth, as he looked into her golden eyes, finding again that impish mirth he so loved in her. The storm had come and passed, the sorrow was there, but also the awareness that he was not alone.
I really love this cat.
I really want to marry her.

“I need you now more than ever,” he said, as if standing in front of the priest, in front of the whole world. “I need you because you give a sense to my life. I need you not because you know things, but because I’d be so lost without you. Only you can steer me into the right direction, and I wish I could offer you so much more than all of me. I just hope…I will be enough for you, no matter what.”
Sabrina nodded, her eyes glistening. “My beloved, my soul. If these be our vows, then let me express mine so that our bond be consecrated in front of the ethereal realms. For you are the only reason I carry on, the reason I believe in our future.” She guided his paws to her collar, and then kissed him, soon returned.
And this time, Fido was all too happy about that time thing…
---
Babylon Gardens Police Station

“I beg your pardon?” Horace Norton looked almost comical, just like his counterparts, Sergeant Ralph and his brother Sergeant Canon.
DA Konstantin handed the man the paper that had just crushed any hope to put their hands on the currently most infamous man present in Babylon Gardens.
A man everybody involved in the case of the attempted murder of five dogs knew guilty like Judas.
A man no one could touch.
Ralph and Canon looked at the paper their superior passed. Canon removed his eye patch, revealing the milky orb behind as if it could read something the printed lines hadn’t revealed.
Alas, there was no mistake.
“Our friend, Calvin Sugary, and his pet Hobbes, are North Korean citizens. Specifically, they work for the Embassy, for the top brasses in the staff. So, unless our Government is interested in a diplomatic crisis with a rogue, possibly nuclear nation over five pets who, by now, have recovered, we can’t even ask those guys what time is it.”
Canon just crumpled up the paper and stuffed it into his mouth, chewed it and then spit out printed confetti.
One confetti landed over Kostya’s nose. The man removed it and looked at it as if wanting to burn it with his eyes. “Our hands and paws are tied, my friends. The evidence we have collected is, just like Gottschalk said, a blatant violation of privacy, and thus useless. Not to mention that a trial would uncover certain things that could stain his reputation and ours, for going along with the accusations.” Like a surveillance system that not even the NSA had. The media would be screaming BIG BROTHER until next millennium, and the echo would shatter all hopes of Gabriella Lundberg to be elected as mayor.
Stupid politics!
“Do we have anything we can use?” Norton asked. He had volunteered for Babylon Gardens because this was supposed to be a tranquil place. An international affair was way out of his league!
Kostya shook his head. “You tell me. As of now, I don’t have the slightest connection between Sugary and the Miltons. For all we know, in fact, as their lawyers said, other firms could be doing research on that microsphere drug. I was hoping I could have a nice chat with that gentleman, but again he’s untouchable.” He sighed. “If at least we could understand how did the Miltons got to him. I mean, there are no hitmen yellow pages on the market.”
“Perhaps that was a favor,” Keene said, from the door of the Chief’s office. The ferret motioned to his lawyer. “Mr. London, will you?”
The man opened his briefcase with a very professional motion and aplomb…and its contents were scattered across the floor.
“I will learn how to do this right, one day,” London muttered while bending down to pick up a USB key. He passed it to Kostya.
The DA looked at the thing with puzzlement. “And this is..?”
“Data transmitted to me by some of the firm’s employees who are still loyal to Dad,” Keen answered. “To cut it short, tomorrow it will be announced at Wall Street that the Milton Industries & Estate will be sold to the North Koreans.”
“The (censored) did actually do it?!” Kostya said, paling. Everyone who knew the fame of Thomas and Celia Milton also knew they were capable of any iniquity to make money, including running one of the most infamous ‘shelters’ ever built. But to dispose of the whole inheritance of Henry Milton, destroy the dream of the man who had worked all his life to the benefit of the animals…
In that moment, Keene Milton looked like a furry, smaller version of Martin Foster during a ‘cold fury’ moment. “They knew they couldn't run this business for long, not with Gottschalk threatening to swallow them for change. So they decided to get rid of it with a minority participation, make a ton of money and throw everything into the hands of an American enemy, just for scorn. Even if we linked Thomas and Celia to the attempted murder, we’d face another kind of adversary entirely, eventually.”
“So…they just get away with it?” Norton asked. Never had he felt so ready to rip the grades off his uniform and go punch those two into kingdom come.
Keene answered with a ferocious grin. “Nah. Things just started to get fun.”

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Last edited by valerio on Fri Jul 26, 2013 12:55 am, edited 1 time in total.



Wed Jul 24, 2013 10:04 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Giving up the company to North Korea, huh Celia?
*chuckels*
ZOE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I NEED THE ZORDS UP AND RUNNIN NOW!!!!!!!!!!

ISNT THAT OVERKILL?
THERE IS NO KILL LIKE OVERKILL ZOE!!!!!!!!!!
ALRIGHT, ALRIGHT!!!!!!!!
ACTIVATE ZORD LAUNCH SEQUENCE!!!!!

Atta girl.
I just hope the cores don't over..
*lights turn off, then emergency power activates*
Load.
Crap.

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Wed Jul 24, 2013 2:38 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
This is such a long chapter or section whatever they are called. But I am enjoying it very much :mrgreen: When Sabrina and Fido were having their conversation, did all of that just happen in a few short seconds? Or over a period of time where Fido just sat in the hospital room?

I am very much enjoying all this recent action mixed with mega drama. I really wanna see why keene smiles at the end and says that this is where the fun begins. ;)
Keep up the amazing work Val! I know that a lot of readers will be waiting anxiously for the next update but take your time and write it out very well.

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Thu Jul 25, 2013 2:43 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
musclecar326 wrote:
This is such a long chapter or section whatever they are called. But I am enjoying it very much :mrgreen: When Sabrina and Fido were having their conversation, did all of that just happen in a few short seconds? Or over a period of time where Fido just sat in the hospital room?

I am very much enjoying all this recent action mixed with mega drama. I really wanna see why keene smiles at the end and says that this is where the fun begins. ;)
Keep up the amazing work Val! I know that a lot of readers will be waiting anxiously for the next update but take your time and write it out very well.

It's happening in the space of a thought in our world. Everyone seeing Fido at the moment would see him as if he was distracted for a moment.
Oh, I hope to meet your expectation for the next update, the conclusion to this episode!

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Thu Jul 25, 2013 2:48 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
that Fibrina scene had me worried for a minute there
also, **** diplomatic immunity.

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Thu Jul 25, 2013 2:56 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
11.
Milton Manor, Babylon Gardens

“I am impressed,” Raimund Gottschalk said. “I didn’t think you capable of giving away your main source of income. To a rogue nation, no less.”
The scene was pretty much similar to the last meeting between the tycoon and the new owners of the Milton Industries & Estate. The difference being that this time Thomas and Celia Milton were grinning with triumph.
“Truth be told,” Celia said, “you just made it easy for us. The Board of Directors had planned to sell everything for a long time, and it had taken a long time to arrange everything so that they could make the most of it in one huge sellout rather than break up the MIE in small fractions at a lower price.”
“Not to mention,” Thomas intervened, “that they needed the final approval from the ferrets, since they had the last word on everything concerning the assets, Steward or not Steward.”
“So you got rid of them in the first place,” Gottschalk said. “I see, smart move.”
“A necessary one,” Celia said. “We were never meant to be the owners, that much the board made clear when they asked us to support their plans to legally claim the firm. We’d get a lot of money, but our managerial position would be purely representative to the PR benefit.”
Gottschalk sipped from a glass of water. “So my first impression about you was wrong. Well, the world makes sense again now.” He enjoyed his hosts’ baleful stares, before going on. “I thought that Henry Milton had been more careful in choosing his collaborators.”
Thomas scoffed. “That old creep suffered from a bad case of naivety! Do you remember how his dear ‘friends’, the Whiteman, had set up a pet fight club right under his nose? He believed in the goodwill of people, when it came to animal welfare. He actually thought that joining ‘the cause’ would bring out the best in a man! Pathetic!”
Celia smiled at her guest. “We learnt to rethink when we met ‘Uncle’ Martin. Now, that was one guy who’d combine control and dedication. And you...Well, you are right: We were not happy to give away the firm, but you convinced us that it was better to make the best of it now rather than wait to be swallowed up. At the price of a sandwich, you said, right? Not to mention your political plans: Better sell now before Milton Industries became associated forever with this animal rights thing, thus giving the weasels grounds for a potential new legal battle over ownership.”
Gottschalk smiled that death-cold smile. “Touché. Again, I must concede that I had underestimated the Board’s determination against Milton’s principles.”
“They were loyal to his money: And they never took it well that a bunch of weasels, who were proving themselves smarter than expected, could hold the MIE in their paws. Henry’s move to give them ownership had tilted the undecided in the majority’s favor. End of the story.”
The tall man nodded. “So, why North Korea? I thought China or the Arab Emirates would make better buyers for the block. My firm could’ve bought it, a merging would have kept everything here.”
Thomas shook his head. “The Koreans had already tried to buy the MIE since Henry’s death. The other competitors offered to buy only part of the holding, the Board wanted to give it all. And we’d never sign the deal in favor of yet another animal lover. Do the math.”
“I did. And I must thank you for your decision.”
Both siblings blinked. “Why?” Celia asked.
Gottschalk stood up, with the fluid motion of a ghost. Not even his clothing did a rustle. Thomas *eep*ed.
The tycoon put his top hat over his head and took his cane. “Because now you are only two rich fools without political protection. And I will take my time in devising the best way to make you suffer for your pathetic murder plans.” Spoken as if announcing the plans for breakfast. Gottschalk started walking toward the door. “Provided, of course, that Mr. Foster won’t get to you first. And he has more dogs than me. Best of luck, gentlemen: You’ll be needing it.”
When the sound of the main entrance door closing echoed through the room, Thomas gulped. “Still up for that trip?”
“I’ll buy the tickets. How does Seoul sounds?”
“Better than here.”
“Aren’t you forgetting something?” said a voice…behind them.
The voice of a dog.
Volant!
“We still have to talk about…your attitude. Dad,” the Rhodesian Ridgeback said. Then his voice became a growl, louder…louder… “I owe you so much for who I am today.” His paw went and uncovered the angry red eye he usually kept hidden under the tuft. “Allow me to thank you properly.”

Thomas and Celia’s screams lasted for a long time…
---
Babylon Garden Police Precinct

When the original owners of Grape and Lucky had come to claim them back, the pet population had shown a remarkable esprit de corps, making it clear to the Richmond husband and wife that pain would be generously administered in case the humans had tried to go all the way and take them away.
Just the suspect that this was the human responsible for the near death of Fino, Fido, Bino, Joey and King had worked like a call to arms for both pets and humans. Only the fact that said dogs were still recovering at the Haichiko Mercy had prevented a larger crowd to assemble here.
What was here, though, was enough to give anyone serious doubts about one’s chance for survival, if the crowd’s expressions told enough.
Calvin and Hobbes Sugary weren’t ‘anyone’. They passed among two lines of hostile humans and pets waiting only for a word, a sneer, anything to lay their hands and claws over them.
The former pet psychiatrist and his Turkish angora cat proceeded toward the limousine waiting by the road, the engine running and the American driver looking nervous.
Calvin and Hobbes entered the car. The man just tapped delicately the driver’s seat.

The crowd looked at the car leaving the area, everyone forced to accept defeat by some stupid international and legal protocol.
Only one of them was smiling.
Keene, from the police building’s waiting room. He clicked a button on his collar. “Shark One to pack: The tunas have left the pond. Have fun, and remember: No prisoners.” On that last phrase, his expression became a grim one that would’ve scared a wolf.
---
The car had just left Babylon Gardens, when Hobbes said, “Well, that was fun. Too bad we flunked.”
Calvin nodded. “Yes, I have underestimated their veterinarians’ competence. But it doesn’t matter, my friend.” He reached out and scratched behind the cat’s ears. Hobbes purred slightly, as Calvin was the only living being who could do that and keep his hand whole. “But we’ll have our occasion for a second round: Once our employers own the former Milton business and properties revolving around the Gardens, we will move to buy the Lucky Charm Grove.”
The cat grinned maniacally. “And turn that place into our playground.”
The man sighed, relaxing against the seat. “Hmm, it will be good to be back in business, my friend.”
“It’s good to hear that,” said a voice…A voice apparently coming out of nowhere, right behind him! A soft, purring feline voice. “It will make this easier.”
Hobbes’ hackles rose, his claws unsheathing. Calvin looked back…but there was no one there.

At the same time, the limo driver looked into the rearview mirror, wondering who had spoken—
And he saw a flash of green cat eyes in the glass! “Oh *&%£$!” His reaction was as instinctual as fast: He floored the brake!

Calvin lurched forward, his head still turned backward, and got a sever whiplash. Hobbes was pushed like a projectile against the driver’s seat!
“The (censored) was that for, you dolt?!” the cat swore, rubbing his head.
“Hobbes, are you alright?” A sincerely worried Calvin asked. It was almost strange to imagine that man capable of worrying over anyone, but he helped his cat with sincere affection.
“Yeah, yeah, I am. But what was the idea, you stupid ape?!” he growled at the driver.
The man was trying to turn back on the stalled engine. “I-I’m sorry, Sir! I thought I s-saw…” He cussed again when he failed again. He sighed. “I’m sorry, Sir, I must check the engine. Will you please wait inside?”
Hobbes started to say what he could do with that piece of advice, when his human said, “Yes, perhaps it’s for the best. We will help ourselves to the fridge.”
After the driver had left the car, the cat said. “Is that a good idea? Did you hear that, too?”
Calvin nodded. “Yes, I did. I wonder what our adversaries may have in mind. They do know better than risking an international crisis by attacking us.”
Outside, the engine’s hood opened.

The driver started checking for damage, but at a first analysis he found none. The oil was still there, the cables were all attached, water was okay—“What’s that?”
A string. He hadn’t noticed it because it was so thin. A merry red string sticking from the hot radiator. The driver was puzzled: At that temperature, an aluminum string would’ve melted, and this strange thing looked like common cotton…
Carefully, the man grabbed the string, pulled it out…and kept pulling…pulling again… “What the heck..?” Apparently, absurdly, out of any logic, the engine ducts were clogged with yarn?!
As the man kept pulling the strange stuff out of his engine, he didn’t notice something rubbing against his legs…until that ‘something’ pulled him down! He fell unceremoniously on his back, wondering who was playing that prank on him…when he heard the voice right beside his ear.
“Look at your demise, human.” A cold, hissing voice that made his skin crawl. The driver almost hadn’t the guts to obey, but he did turn his head.
And saw the boa constrictor opening his maws, just before lunging at his face!

“What the--?” The usually composed Calvin said, as the driver disappeared from the view.
“Apparently,” Hobbes said, looking through his window, “Either these guys have guts, or they’re angrier than we presumed.”
“I’d assume the second,” the man said, his hand going to the holster inside his jacket –he hated guns, they were so primitive! But his superiors, through his lawyer, had insisted he carried one, just for safety. Luckily, he had trained and armed Hobbes. Their assailants would soon discover the error—
A shadow filled the window by the cat’s side.
Calvin had just the time to turn, realizing that Hobbes was on the line of fire, and, even worse, that shooting from inside the car was useless since the glasses and doors were bulletproof…
Then the glass shattered as if in an explosion. Obeying his reflexes, human and cat shielded their eyes, just as a monstrous brown-furred paw reached in and grabbed the cat, who caterwauled in fright before being pulled out!
“Hobbes!” There was one thing, one only thing that could shatter the man’s demeanor to the point of sending him into a panic rage, and that was seeing his beloved cat in danger or worse! He didn’t even think, he just opened the door, ready to kill the responsible of that outrage with his own bare hands—“*whoof!*” That came when a brown-furred fist connected with his plexus.
Calvin Sugary bent in two and rolled down, losing the grip on his gun. He forced himself to stay conscious, while his eyes went to the furred animal legs…of a German Shepherd dog. A mature specimen, Calvin’s analytical mind said, built like a log, all muscles perfectly tuned on a body ridden by scars, and grey eyes that held no pity in them.
Pet Fighter. He had assisted many of them, back when he was a pet psychiatrist. Calvin knew that a wrong move or word would send him into a painful death.
The man’s analytical mind, though, couldn’t make sense of the…parrot perching on the dog’ shoulder. Military Macaw. Green fluffy feathers with a touch of blue at the wings and red on his brow.
Buenos dias, stranger,” the parrot said. Where the dog’s eyes and face were cold with fury ready to explode, the bird looked…happy, although in a sinister way. “My name is Piper, although you can call me General. My canine friend is Champ, a King of Champions in case you didn’t know…”
Calvin gulped. King of Champions, the very elite of the Pet Fighters, dogs who had lost everything that could connect them to the humans’ world. Feral wolves kept at bay from them!
“And this big son of momma bear all ready to snap your precious friend’s neck is Boris.” The ground seemed to shake as the grizzly came into sight and eclipsed the sun. Hobbes was hanging limp, unconscious, from the bear’s paw.
“You are making a mistake, a big one,” Calvin said, trying to stand up…only to be pushed down against the asphalt by Champ’s leg. As if the dog was crushing a bug.
“My friends imagined you would say that,” Piper said. “In fact, I got a message from them.” Then his voice changed to Martin Foster’s, just as if the man himself was talking. “Piper, Macajuel and Champ are Mexican citizens, and they have their own connections to make sure your friends will stay away from them. As for Boris, he’s a feral without citizenship, so he’s outside all jurisdiction. And we don’t think North Korea will start WWIII just to avenge your loss. You are disposable, Mr. Sugary, and we are going to make sure you will never be recycled.” Piper grinned, as he leaned forward. “Karma sucks, does it? Never try to outsmart me. Farewell, Mr. Sugary.”
Calvin paled, but then…he smiled. “Well played, Mr. Foster. I concede to that… May ask you a favor, gentlemen?”
Piper shrugged. “Listening won’t kill me.”
The man nodded. “Please spare the driver, he is innocent.”
“Done already. He’ll wake up with some broken ribs and unable to utter a word. You don’t want me to go into details, hm? Any other final wish?”
“You are not going to spare Hobbes, are you?”
Piper nodded. “He will not suffer. Unlike you.”
Calvin smiled one last time. “Thank you.”
Champ fiddled with his collar and produced a syringe. Then he bent over the man…
---
Somewhere outside Babylon Gardens

“Please! Please stop it! You can’t do this!”
*tink* *tink* *tink* went the hammer as it hit the big nail into the tree’s bark.
The chains jingled while Celia and Thomas tried to set themselves free. But pulling at the chains was as much useless as pulling at their thick leather collars. Especially considering they were also covered with bruises and cuts, their clothing tattered to the point of leaving little to the imagination.
“Volant, please!” Thomas tried again. “We signed all the documents, both paper and electronics. The manor belongs to you now, it’s all yours! We gave you our belongings, you are rich! We will leave and never return to this damned place again, and you know it! Why are you doing this?!
One last blow, and the nail with the ring was firmly stuck into the wood.
Volant turned and his blue eye seemed to sparkle with its own light. “You adopted me to use me and become rich. You would’ve disposed of me either you succeeded or failed. I am returning the favor. Do you remember this place?” His arm encompassed the forest all around.
Celia looked around. Both siblings shook their heads.
Volant chuckled bitterly. “Figures. This is where you abandoned me as a puppy, bound with a collar and chain. This is where I was supposed to die, alone, by hunger and thirst, or worse. This is where you killed my innocence and taught me what your species is capable of…” His teeth flashed in a cruel grin. “Well, it is time I shared such experience. Despite your attempts, I survived because friends helped me. Let’s see who will help you.” He turned and started walking away. They didn’t see him smile. “And you are right: In case you survived, you better not show yourselves around again. You will not be so lucky.”
He enjoyed hearing their pleas, and then their curses, until they confounded themselves with the rustles of the leaves…
---
Gottschalk House, Apt. 500, floor 50. Terrace High

Raimund Gottschalk closed the sat phone. “It is done.”
Martin nodded. He smiled bitterly. “Poor Kostya, he’s not going to be a happy man.”
“Doesn’t concern him,” Keene said, pouring himself a lemon soda. “Other departments will take care of the case and get a headache trying to figure how to persecute a bunch of animals or even trying to link them to us.”
Martin shook his head. “As long as they’re unable to report anything, I’m good.”
Gottschalk’s lips stirred a fraction. The glucocorticoids drugs he had obtained by now had destroyed both Calvin and Hobbes’ higher brain functions. There was no antidote, no surgery for that. Just the rest of their lives spent as breathing vegetables, at the expenses of their employers. It would be someone else’s decision to pull the plug or not. Far as they were concerned, vengeance had been exacted without loss of life but with the worst possible punishment. “Highly karmic, Mr. Foster, that you chose a solution mirroring the possible damage our furry friends could have suffered in this crisis.”
Martin toasted. “What can I say? Sometimes I scare myself. Now, here’s to our friends’ health and long life, and to Gabriella’s victory. That will be the day!”
After they had cheered and drunk, Martin asked Keene. “What about your future? Going back to the manor?”
The ferret shook his head. “Nah. Much as we love that place, it’s right that Volant enjoys it. The poor lad suffered enough in his life, it’s time he deserved a classy doghouse. We will build a new manor for us and set there the offices for the new Milton Industries…or whatever our marketing office will call them.”
Martin raised his glass again. “Kudos! So you’re back in business?”
“Heh, once the sellout will be official, every employee and manager faithful to Dad’s dream will quit and join the new management. Thank you and Herr Gottschalk for coughing up some dough for the operation.”
“Our pleasure, partner,” the tall man said, raising his glass in turn. “Too bad we couldn’t spoil the plan to our friends, but I admit it makes the result even more pleasant.”
“Spoken like a true shark!” They toasted again.
---
Lundberg House, River Ridge

"Are you sure there will be no traces left?" the mayor candidate asked the female grey cat as she served her a glass of sparkling water with ice and a slice of lemon.
The cat nodded. "Shadows would be easier to find out, ma'm." She sipped a drink. "I like your style: already disposing of your enemies before sitting in the office."
Gabriella filled a glass for herself. "They threatened me. They threatened innocent lives. Even if the records will not report my name, I felt my duty to make it clear that no one can bully me." She toasted with Garr's companion. "I knew I had made a good deal when I adopted you guys."
---
Milton Manor

Volant looked at the cordless phone in his paw with a great sadness in his eyes.
Since coming back to this house, only one thought had obsessed him: And he knew that he wouldn’t let it go, now.
Because, at last, his old ghosts had been settled, just the way he had wanted it. He had dreamt of this revenge, and it still tasted sweet in his mouth and mind. He had a safe place, his place, not something he had to depend on others to keep. He had a new life ahead of him, a life he could control at last. No one would keep this house and this life from him, his Master would make sure of that.
He was safe.
And yet, something inside him couldn’t just be content with the safety of solitude. After all, despite it all, if he was still alive to enjoy this moment, he owed it to someone.
The phone beckoned to him.
Volant started punching in the number. He brought the phone to his ear, waited until a man’s voice answered, “Male speaking. Who is that?”
“Dad…” Volant said with a trembling voice.

HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES
Season IV
Episode 10
FIN

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Last edited by valerio on Fri Jul 26, 2013 1:12 am, edited 1 time in total.



Thu Jul 25, 2013 12:49 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Quite the way of taking them out Keene.
Of corse a would have given you some tracker jackers but you managed to make it amusing without them.
Good job.

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
I was a bit confused. who all was involved in taking out Calving and Hobbes?
I know Piper, Mac, and champ

but the yarn magic belonged to socks. was she there as well? or did someone else have that?

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Thu Jul 25, 2013 11:56 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
RandomGeekNamedBrent wrote:
I was a bit confused. who all was involved in taking out Calving and Hobbes?
I know Piper, Mac, and champ

but the yarn magic belonged to socks. was she there as well? or did someone else have that?

it was Socks. While Bruja did the eyes trick

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
yeah, I kinda figured Bruja was the one doing the eyes. I did make that her defining characteristic, after all

my confusion came from the fact that Socks wasn't one of the ones still in Mexico, she was here in America with Garr. does that not matter, as long as the attack can't be traced back to anyone?

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
RandomGeekNamedBrent wrote:
yeah, I kinda figured Bruja was the one doing the eyes. I did make that her defining characteristic, after all

my confusion came from the fact that Socks wasn't one of the ones still in Mexico, she was here in America with Garr. does that not matter, as long as the attack can't be traced back to anyone?

You're right. I'll clarify that part. Added paragraph near the end of the chapter. Thank you.

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES
Season IV
Episode 11 - Pet Pop
By VALERIO


1.
Lindberg House, Babylon Gardens. 6am

“Good morning.” The words came through sleep’s blurring filter, and Bill was sorely tempted to dismiss them.
His nose didn’t dismiss at all the delicious wafts of pancakes, syrup, eggs, butter, orange juice.
His stomach decided to snooze sleep.
The man rubbed his eyes groggily. His eyes instinctively went…to an empty spot in front of him.
“Down here,” said the same voice. Bill’s eyes lowered and found the filled tray. And the Welsh Corgi holding it. “Will you just take it? This stuff’s heavy.”
Bill sat up, chuckled as he reached out to take it. “Thought you were stronger than this, King.”
The dog massaged his back. “Let’s just say I was…busy, yesterday night.” He blushed as he said that.
Bill ate a forkful of scrambled eggs. “Hm-m. Bailey was happy to have you back home.”
“Da-ad…”
The man shrugged. “What? You two are so made for each other. I find you guys even cuter than a cat and dog couple. I know you’ll keep her happy boy. And I’ll say it as I’d say it to a human, FYI.”
By then, King wanted to hide himself under the bed until sunset. “Thanks.”
Bill cut a pancake in two and enjoyed it like a true delicacy. “I know Fox can’t cook like this. You or Bailey? Or both?”
“Me. The others…assisted me.”
Bill put down the fork, then took a sip from the juice. “You did this for me?” That was a first. Though he had acted politely and disciplined since being adopted, King had always maintained that…gruff streak Fox had warned his Dad about. That little guy had seemed incapable of trusting anyone else but his best buddy and of course Bailey.
King nodded at the man’s question. He shuffled his feet, looking down, his ears lowered. “I…I know I wasn’t the best pup to have around, and…” he shrugged, bit his lower lip as if fearing to speak the wrong words. Then he sighed. “Ah, when you looked at me, at the hospital, you…you were so happy, relieved…”
Bill nodded. “I was. And before you say it, it wasn’t because I had feared how Fox or Bailey would suffer without you.”
King nodded, his eyes glistening. “Uh, can I…climb up?”
In answer, Bill patted the bed at his right side. “Come up, champ. About time you asked.”
The corgi hopped and, after a couple of clumsy attempts, he managed to stand on the bed. Then he crawled until he was laying down near his Dad.
“Daddy…” He just laid there and curled against the human. When was the last time he had allowed himself to let go? To just trust his heart instead of fearing it?
Fearing the hurt. His affection had gone to his older brother, to his pets, because just the idea of having his old man in the same room with him was scary. “Daddy…” Dog, he had needed a moment like this: A moment of pure intimacy, where he could feel totally vulnerable, knowing he had someone to rely on no matter what.
And screw if this was his dog or human side talking. King knew this was himself needing his family, his Daddy, and nothing else mattered!
He felt himself falling asleep in the arm of Bill…then was brusquely brought to full awareness by the military trumpet…coming from the alarm clock! “I think my ear is bleeding.”
Bill finished eating, this time in a hurry. “Sorry, son, but the timetable at the shelter is stricter than my old job’s. I swear that Martin would rather have me sleep there as well.” He gulped down the rest of the juice to finish, then cleaned his mouth. He kissed King between his hears. “I love you, King. And I promise I’ll always do my best for you and for the others.”
King nodded, wishing he had a longer tail to thump against the bed in agreement. “I know. Will you be late tonight? I would like to play…a board game,” he added almost hesitantly, that dark part of his past still waiting for an upset look, a slurred flow of insults…
“Well, if no emergency occur…Will Monopoly do?”
Relief washed over the corgi. “Would be just great.”
Bill left the bed. “In this case, you better have a lucky strike with the dice, pup: I shall show no mercy. Now go and enjoy your day, before your wife gets jealous.” He made it in time out the bedroom before a pillow hit the door.

King looked at the closed door with a content smile. Yup, he could say it: It was a Wonderful Dog’s Life.
His eyes and nose fell on the tray. On the empty plates.
On the remains.
Looking around like a wolf on the prowl, King crawled to the tray and grabbed the eggs plate. He sniffed it and then started licking it clean—
They knocked at the bedroom’s door. “Well, I guess he liked your surprise,” Fox said, leaning in.
“ACK!” King quickly tossed the plate through the open window. A moment later, came the cry of a Bigglesworth. “PULL!” followed by a shot and the sound of the plate shattering.
King chuckled nervously. “Yup. Guess you were right after all about the breakfast thing.”
Fox gave him the thumb up, then he and Bailey stepped in. The two huskies hopped on the bed, then each sat at a side of the corgi and hugged him. King moaned. “You know, I could never get used to this…” then his paw ran delicately along Bailey’s belly. “And you better gotta love this too, guys, cause there’s a lot coming from here.” He kissed his wife’s tummy.
“Still sure it will be more than one?” Bailey asked.
“Of course.” His paw ran behind her back and showed Fox three waggling fingers. Both dogs grinned like mad foxes.
Bailey threw a suspicious look at her husband. “Do you know something I should know, perhaps?”
King feigned his best innocent look. One could almost see the halo blinking over his head. “Moi? Mais non, ma délicieuse boulette.”
The female blinked. “Wut?”
King made the most solemn face. “Dear, iif I'm going to bring you to Canada to do some real sledding, you better know some language.”
Blink again. “Are we going to Canada?”
“I’ll call a favor to Uncle Martin, I’m sure he’ll get us a first class ticket.”
“And why should he?”
King facepawlmed mentally –sometimes he forgot this was no Sasha. “Err…you see…” and before he started scrambling, the doorbell rang. “I’ll get it,” both he and Fox said. “After you lovebirds are finished, make the bed.” This time, he made it in time before two pillows hit the door.

“Coming,” Fox said. He opened the door. “Oh! Hey, Allegra.”
The blue tabby’s tail swished. She was holding a couple of tickets against her chest. “Hi! Guess what?” And she definitely looked excited.
Fox tried to look at the tickets, but she made a show of hiding what was written on them. “Ah-ah, you must guess!”
The husky wagged. “Hmm…knowing you, it must be some good cultural event, am I right?”
Allegra feigned indignation. “Know me, Sir? A dog like you, consorting with cats to the point of knowing them? Shame on you, Sir!”
He flashed her a grin, a rare expression to be seen. “You don’t know it, my fair Lady, but challenging the rules, flirting with danger, is my secret to get to a lady’s heart.”
Allegra seemed to think about it. “Hmm…in this case I think you earned the right to look.” She handed him the tickets.
Fox read them. “A reading soirée at Foster Manor?”
She was nodding eagerly. “I volunteered us to do a duet over a book of our choice! Do you like it?”
He scratched his head. “Wow! I mean, I never made a performance of my reading…” He wagged his tail again, a little harder this time. “But I guess it won’t hurt to try, if it’s for charity as it reads here. Heh, I’m sure Peanut will be there with Dayshaun. His kid surely took…” he thought about what he had just said.
Allegra took the tickets. “I know. Weird, but you must admit it’s hard not to see that kitten as his kid. Looks aside, I mean.”
“Yeah.” But of course, having a former human as bestest friend in the world couldn’t be considered weirder than…
Fox shook his head. Nah, that was way too weird! “Thank you for inviting me. But you must have paid a fortune.”
Allegra smiled and cocked her head sideways. “Nah! I made good tips at Heathcliff’s. And not only in trash, I mean.”
“I can imagine that. So…up for an ice cream? I still must have breakfast. I smell like breakfast and it’s driving me mad.”
Allegra chuckled, covering her mouth. “Ohh, even the more audacious, kind Sir. Are you sure you can stay in your Club after this display of bravery? After all, we should be seeing only for work matters.”
Fox closed the door –King and Bailey could surely do without him for this morning. “Nah, those rules count against bringing a cat into our territory. Bino has decided to let us choose our friends, at last.”
Allegra pouted. “Aw, no fun then.”
Fox shivered. “Believe me, we’ve had enough share of strong emotions for one decade.”
Allegra nodded. “Yes, I know. Sorry, didn’t mean to upset you. Are you alright now?”
“Ah, you don’t have to be sorry. And yes, I’m good. The last days made me realize just how much I need King in my life, and now I really need to vent some stress so...could I come to your place to check your book collection?”
Allegra laughed. “Scandalous, kind Sir. Scandalous.
Fox blushed heavily. “I meant, to choose the books for tonight—“ He was interrupted by a pat on his arm.
“Kidding you.”

King looked at the two walk away, exchanging words like two old friends.
“You look happy,” Bailey said, leaning next to him at the window.
“Because I am. It’s good that he found some friends outside Bino’s entourage.”
“Even if it’s a cat?” She frowned with puzzlement.
“That adds to cuteness. And cats are cool, babe.”
She shrugged. “If you say so. Shall you come to the farm? I got some chores scheduled.”
King made a face. “Any chance I could persuade you to do something less tiring?”
“But it would be boring. And I must stay in good health for the pups. And you…” she prodded at his tummy with a finger. “You don’t want to look like some floppy, lazy dog. You must set an example to the pups.”
King groaned and laid his chin against the edge of the window. “I knew there was one downside to this ‘papa’ thing.”
---
Bigglesworth house

“PULL!” the Siamese cat said, before raising his shotgun and hitting a perfect score.
“Nice shot, Sir,” said another, quite identical to the shooter, except for the fedora and a carton ‘press’ tag on his hat. He was scribbling on a pad, his tongue sticking out. “Any declaration for the posterity?”
Benito – at least, so the tag hanging from his neck would read – posed in a heroic fashion. “Yes, of course! I am going to rid the world of the unbearable task of doing the dishes! Today, a plate, tomorrow the Chinas!”
“Bravo!” Bene!” “Bis! Bis!” the audience applauded from the opposite side of the room. The whole B-clan looked like a parade of Turn-of-the-Century fashion statement.
Maxwell was definitely impressed. “I should hang out here more often, guys. I love your style!”
Benito put the shotgun against the wall. “Thanks, chum.” Then he removed his tags and tossed them to Butch, who took them, exchanged them and tossed his to ‘Benito’.
Max blinked. “Err...aren’t you..?”
“Of course not! I am Butch because I can shoot, isn’t that obvious?”
Max looked at the female sitting near to him. “You are Blanche, right?”
The cat looked at her tags with a quizzical face, then to another female she said, “Hey, Berenice! I am Blanche, right?”
“Depends. Do you like dogs, right?”
“Yes.”
“Good. Right you are.”
Max turned to Joey sitting next to his other side. “Are you sure you don’t want to adopt?”
Joey wagged his tail happily. “Oh, you get used to that, after you sniffed their butts a couple of times. And I get never bored!”
Max made a face. “I believe it. And I think I’ll pass, thank you.”
“And yes, I want you two to give me a nice litter. And numerous. At least five. The others volunteered to help us raise them, so no problem on that side. And even their Mom is OK with it.”
“Not to mention that Grape can’t be the only one to have a smashing litter at her first birthing!” said a male with the most enormous, showy hat even a woman at Ascot would’ve envied. The hat displayed a chicken resting in a thick straw nest surrounded by purple flowers. There were actual bees busy around the flowers. “The honor of the Clan is at stake!”
The chicken cluck-clucked and laid an egg! The egg rolled down the hat and from there into the paw of a B male dressed like a perfect gentleman…and who was waiting with a straw in the other paw. The cat pricked the egg open with a claw and started eating it with the straw.
“Soo…” Max said to Blanche. He puffed up his chest and flashed his trademark grin. “Romantic dinner? I know a place on the hill where you can see the whole Gardens. I’ll fill the picnic basket, you pick the tablecloth and the dishes. Is that a deal…What are they doing?” he asked, as soon as he noticed five interesting banana playing 1-2-3 Shoot.
“Oh, don’t worry: They are gambling on the right to chaperon us,” Blanche answered.
Max already didn’t like that word, ‘chaperon’. “Aaand they’re playing that game because..?”
She waved her paw in dismissal. “Oh, last time they fought a samurai battle. Bob lost and in his honor they hanged the swords at the wall.”
Max followed her finger pointing and screamed horribly…at the sight of Bob’s head mounted like a trophy, the mouth open in a silent scream, just right above two crossed katana!
Max fainted.
“Hey guys,” Bob said to his siblings. “If he gets sterile with fright, this was your idea.”
“Not it!” all of the other cats answered.

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Last edited by valerio on Thu Aug 01, 2013 12:33 am, edited 2 times in total.



Tue Jul 30, 2013 10:21 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
Aaahh the bigglesworths.
Such a good source of comedy.
The only way they could be better is if they turned into dancing tubas.






Make that happen, valerio.

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Tue Jul 30, 2013 2:27 pm
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
I found 2 minor mistakes:
Quote:
He kissed King between his hears.
Should be "ears" instead.

Quote:
the doorbell rang. “I’ll get it,” both and Fox said.
Should be "both he and fox"

Also 2 things. Did the plate King threw get shot by the biggles? If so why is that clan right outside of their house or how did they shoot it?

Great start to a new chapter anyways, i like the shift or follow-up where it will deal with stuff happening to the dogs that were involved with the terrorist plot.

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Wed Jul 31, 2013 1:58 am
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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
corrected typos, thank you for pointing out.
And yes, since it was never said where the Bigglesworth live, I decided they're in the range of a shotgun...from their home. :lol:

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Post Re: HOUSEPETS! THE SERIES Official Thread
I heard from someone that Fino actually made it into this FanFic! Is that true!? :D I still have to go back and read through it, but if that is so, then kudos to you Valero for being awesome!!! XD This just made my day, and I'm now going to have to start reading this story XP

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