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Enter Katrina

by on May 6, 2012

Last time, in the Catrina Chronicles, Princess Ermingard had successfully defeated Emtala, and was off to the Queen’s Museum to retrieve the Golden Spleen. Little did she know that there was something very important she didn’t know…

Ermingard was, to use a common phrase, all keyed up, like a puppy who you’re taking care of and who jumps at you as soon as you get in the door because it’s so so so excited to see you because it thought you had gone away and would never ever ever come back ever! That was how excited she was. She had finally got attuned to the Sporky Force, which meant she could actually shoot her spork arrows at things and hit them, rather than missing wildly. She wasn’t quite aware, like Catrina, that she was a character in a story, but she had read enough stories that she recognized her situation. She was nearing the high point of her quest. The Queen’s Museum was probably guarded by a ferocious monster or an even more tyrannical force than Emtala, and she would have the fight of her life, but she would eventually win through and reach the Golden Spleen just in the nick of time. It was how the stories usually went.

She was therefore immensely disappointed when she arrived at the museum to find…nothing. Not a monster. Not a moat. Not even so much as a rabid alligator or fire-breathing lizard. The sum total of the museum’s security force consisted of one elderly constable in a faded uniform, and the most dangerous thing about him was that he had a predilection for telling the same (slightly exaggerated) story over and over again, even if the person he was telling it to had already heard it. Ermingard had planned to hide in the bushes and wait until nightfall, but now she wondered if there was even any point. The constable, sitting 0n a chair next to the main door of the museum, had apparently fallen asleep. She could probably walk right in and take the Golden Spleen without so much as disturbing him.

“Well,” she considered, a little hopefully, “maybe there’ll be a night watchman.” So Ermingard hid behind a tree, per her original plan, and waited. The anticlimactic nature of the situation only got worse, as the sun set and the moon rose, and to her amazement it turned out that the elderly constable was the night watchman. He shook himself awake, looked blearily about, and apparently decided that the museum wasn’t going to be attacked that night, whereupon he went right back to sleep again. Ermingard was beginning to get annoyed. “Darn it,” she resolved, “I’m going to have my dramatic moment!” So she climbed higher into the tree, tied a rope to one of her spork-arrows, and fired it towards a window. The spork stuck tight in the window sill, and Ermingard gripped the rope and made her way across. It was rather harder than it looked, and her fingers hurt terribly from holding so tight to the rope, but eventually she got to the museum. She then got fed up with stealth mode and kicked the window in, but the shattering glass didn’t even give the slumbering constable a start. Ermingard, with a bleak sigh of resignation to her lot, climbed inside. A nice curvy staircase led down to the main level of the museum, and then a series of brightly colored signs led her towards the chamber where the Golden Spleen was kept. It wasn’t even under glass. It sat there, glowing brilliantly in the soft moonlight from a nearby window, almost smug in its splenecity. Ermingard reached towards it….and then paused. Was that a hum? She had distinctly heard a low hum, almost like a vacuum climber being operated some floors away, which was an odd simile for her to use since vacuum cleaners hadn’t yet been invented in her time. She turned….and gasped. Finally, things were getting dramatic.

There before her on the wall hung two weapons, the like of which she had never seen before. Their hilts were made of black and silver metal, with a single red button on each. The hilts weren’t so remarkable; she’d seen metal sword-hilts before. The blades, now…the blades were something else altogether. They were pure plasma energy, bright and crackling, yet still holding in a shape she instantly recognized. They were sporks. Her breath quickened. She had to be looking at the Sporksaber, the one Burnside had told her about, the one destined to be wielded by Catrina! Ermingard hesitated. For one brief moment she considered claiming the weapon for herself. But then she recollected that interfering with destiny like that never worked out well in the books, and besides she had her own weapon now anyway, and she was rather beginning to like it, thank you.”So you can have your rotten old Sporksaber,” she said aloud, addressing Catrina.

The next question, of course, was which rotten old Sporksaber Catrina was supposed to have. Ermingard considered the matter carefully. They looked almost exactly alike, except for one rather obvious difference; the blade on the left one was red, the blade on the right was green. Ermingard smiled. Once again her knowledge of books came in handy. Red was always the color used by the villains. Therefore, she needed to choose green. So she reached out, pulled the green Sporksaber to the wall, deactivated it so she could stick it safely in her pocket, and then ran to the Golden Spleen. Hardly had she laid a hand on it when the room shifted and broke up around her, and the floor dissolved into nothingness under her feet. “Oh bother,” said Ermingard as she felt into a swirly sort of void, “perhaps I shouldn’t have touched the-”


Back in the 12th century, the black cube in Catrina’s home country suddenly shifted, gave a sort of twitch, and vanished entirely. Shmirmingard Castle stood proudly once more, its flags rippling resplendently in the breeze. Catrina stood on the walltop, striking a dramatic pose. “Ah, it’s good to be back in the storyline,” she said, smiling happily.

“Oh, I don’t know,” said Perry, standing next to her. “I thought we were having fun while we were away, what with the epilogue to Catrina in Space and all.”

Catrina smiled coyly. “You know, I figure this episode’s getting towards the end, and our author’s probably leading towards one of those discreet cutaway moments. We could probably sneak out of the storyline again, maybe write our own little subplot, if you know what I mean.”

“This isn’t one of those paranormal romance stories, is it?” Perry asked, though he didn’t exactly mind.

“Wanna see if it is?”

Before Perry could answer that very interesting question, he was quite unexpectedly blasted into the air. He hurtled end over end down from the walltop, landed smack on a broad banner that read Welcome Back, Catrina, crumpled to the ground, and didn’t move. Catrina, horror-stricken, dashed to the edge of the walltop and looked down to where the blast had come. A tall metal figure stood glaring up at her. She didn’t recognize the Char-Bot, but then, she didn’t need to. With a swiftness born of fury she whipped out her towel, looped it around a nearby gargoyle, and swung down, her boot smacking into the Char-Bot’s metallic chestplate and giving it a very sizable dent. She pulled the towel in and aimed it straight at his head. “Right,” she demanded, her voice taut with wrath, “where’s Susan? I know she’s behind this! She always is!”

Susan was hiding nearby. Unlike most villains would, she didn’t pop out and deliver a monologue about how she was far above a worthless dull creature like Catrina, and how she wouldn’t be bullied any longer. Instead she did something much more sensible. She pulled out a small remote control from her pocket, and pressed its one lone button. The Char-Bot exploded in a massive fireball, taking Catrina with it before she had time to realize that she had just got killed again, for what was either the fourth or fifth time, depending on how one counted. Susan turned her back on the blaze, partly because she knew it looked really cool, the fire silhouetting her and all that just like in the movies, and partly because she was expecting someone. There; emerging from the wreck of the welcome banner came Perry, clearly badly hurt, a look of alarm on his face. Susan sneaked a look round; there, too, came Movie Catrina, having returned to consciousness some minutes before, and intrigued by the sound of the explosion. Susan had picked up a few other things too in 2016 besides the movie adaptation of Catrina. Like, for example, a 9-millimeter handgun, with which she promptly shot Perry in the head.

Movie Catrina let out a wail of despair, which actually sounded pretty close to genuine. “My love interest!” she screamed. “You killed him!”

“Yeah, duh, I’m the villain, I do that,” Susan said. “So, now you’re supposed to turn to evil so you can get revenge on me, and then you’ll be my apprentice. That’s how this works. Just like Anakin, or Harvey Dent. It’s the part you’re destined to play.”

“Oh?” Movie Catrina said. “They like totally changed the script on me, didn’t they? Um, okay, yeah, I’ll be evil, but, see, here’s the thing, I’m not really sure how. I haven’t exactly played that role before.”

Susan sighed, reached into the backpack she happened to be carrying with her and which had only just magically appeared, and produced a notebook. “Here. It’s the Evil Overlord List. It’s big on the Internet. Just follow that, and you’ll do fine.”

“Okay. Like, one more question. if I’m trying to get revenge on you, why would I-”

At that moment Ermingard popped in, Golden Spleen in one hand and green Sporksaber in the other. She rapidly took stock of the situation, sort of, and noticed that Catrina was up and moving about, so she probably didn’t need the Golden Spleen after all. Then Ermingard saw Susan, and realized what was really going on. Almost. Unfortunately, it was right then that she made a really serious error. “Here!” she yelled towards Movie Catrina. “Catch!” and she flung the green Sporksaber towards her.

Movie Catrina’s hand closed around the hilt. Her eyes blazed with green fire, and the black in her hair disappeared, replaced by blazing blonde. One flash of the Sporksaber, one flare of green plasma, and Susan’s gun tumbled away in pieces. “Hey, now,” Susan said, feeling suddenly that she had lost control of the situation, “this isn’t what you’re supposed to-” Another flash. Susan tumbled away in pieces. Movie Catrina spoke, her voice a good octave lower. “As I was saying, if I’m supposed to take revenge on you, why would I ever agree to be your apprentice? I’d much rather be the master. Way more fun.”

Ermingard backpedaled swiftly out of sight, still clutching the Spleen. This wasn’t right at all. That couldn’t be the real Catrina. But then, who was she? And what in heaven’s name was Ermingard herself supposed to do now?

Meanwhile, Movie Catrina, still experiencing the emotional high of her new turn towards evil, stalked towards the fallen banner. The name “Catrina” stared up at her, in bright red letters that now seemed cruelly ironic. “You know,” Movie Catrina exposited to no one in particular, “I don’t think the name Catrina suits me anymore. I think I need a new name.” She thought briefly, and the dark side of the Sporky Force whispered an answer to her. She raised the Sporksaber high, and brought it down with a quick slash, right across the C. Only now it wasn’t a C anymore. Now…it was a K.  “And so, from this day forward, I shall no longer be Catrina,” she said, as dramatic minor-key music swelled behind her, “No, I shall be called….Katrina!”

She whirled the Dark Sporksaber around her head, as lightning crashed in the sky, and the fire blazed anew behind her. She was about to indulge in a burst of maniacal laughter, when she checked Rule 20 of the Evil Overlord List, which specifically advised not to do that sort of thing. So she contented herself with a small, but still very sociopathic, giggle.

to be continued….


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  1. Great work, buddy!

  2. …and the two Storylines became One, and of the One there came yet Another, with a “K”


    • Yes. Begun, the Catrina Wars have. 😛
      *da-da da da, dum da da, dum da da…..*

  3. I’m wondering… Are we gonna end up with Caitrina or something? hehehe

    Another great installment!

    • Oooh….now wouldn’t THAT be interesting. The pre-retcon Caitlin meeting the post-retcon Catrina. STORY IDEA. 😛

  4. I fully expect to see it referenced sometime soon 😉

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