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Toot-toot, Peanut Butter

by on August 18, 2012

Last time, in the Catrina Chronicles, Ermingard and Katrina had set off on the good ship Discourteous Shark, in search of a way to steal a time-traveling device from ninjas in order to get back to the 12th century. Meanwhile, in Edison City…

Light flared in a vacant lot near the Eyre Memorial Bridge, and Catrina shimmered into existence. She checked herself quickly, making sure that she had all her parts, that she hadn’t been turned violet or magenta or some other unusual color, and that she was in fact alive. Catrina had learned through experience to be certain about these things. Today, however, everything seemed to be in order. She patted the silver handle of her Sporksaber, then briefly addressed the readers. “Hi there. Just so you know, I was supposed to be in a dashing Santa spy novel with Atlantean mermaids, but I’ve gone on strike. My author kept killing me off. So I decided to come back here.”  Catrina scanned the area. “I don’t suppose anyone could tell me what Katrina and Ermingard have been up to in my absence?”

At that exact moment, the Discourteous Shark skimmed by, the blades of its Spongebob Squarepants limited-edition handheld fan valiantly chopping the water, relentlessly propelling the hundred Winnie the Pooh floaties that made up the boat forward. Katrina stood jauntily on the prow, bellowing out a hearty sea shanty. Catrina didn’t quite catch the words, but it had something to do with a bottle of rum and an intoxicated dolphin. At the back of the boat, somewhat less jaunty than her companion, Ermingard was busy throwing up her breakfast.

Catrina, open-mouthed, watched them sail by until they turned a bend in the river and were lost to her view. She briefly considered following them to see just what was around the riverbend, beyond the shore, where the gulls fly free. After all, she certainly had never heard the wolf cry to the blue corn moon, or asked the grinning bobcat why he grins, and she most definitely hadn’t learned to sing with all the voices of the mountain or paint with all the colors of the- Catrina stopped herself. Why would anyone want to converse with an undomesticated bobcat anyway? They’d probably scratch your eyes out or give you rabies. And with her luck, if she tried listening to any sort of wolf, it would end up being a werewolf that would want to devour her spleen. Catrina had already lost her spleen once; she didn’t much care to lose it again. So, instead of going just around the riverbend, she did the safe, practical thing: she turned around and resolutely made her way into the city. She had no idea where she was going, exactly, but she figured she would find a nice quiet bookshop or cafe somewhere, at which she could sit and wile away the afternoon.

After about an hour or so of meandering about, she abruptly came upon a railroad track. On one of the rails lay a tiny golden peanut. “Hm,” Catrina said. “A peanut. What an unusual thing to find upon a railroad track.” She wondered about the likely odds of a train coming along and reducing the peanut to peanut butter; it would make for an interesting, if somewhat messy, lunch. But, alas, she lacked both jelly and bread to make a proper PBJ, so she bid farewell to the peanut and started to walk away. Then she heard a scream.

Catrina whirled, drawing her Sporksaber in a single fluid motion. To her amazement, she saw that a young women had been tied tightly to the railroad tracks, and just beyond her stood…Susan?  “Yes,” said Susan, “It is I! I didn’t go back to the 12th century after all, no, Doctor What’s handling that little operation. I decided to stay here because I knew you’d turn up sooner or later! And so you did!”

“So I did,” said Catrina. “But what on earth are you doing to this poor-I’m sorry, what’s your name?”

“Jennifer,” said the girl. “And, um, I don’t mean to be a bother, but would you mind untying me, please?”

But Susan cut in before Catrina could move. “What does it look like I’m dying? Railroad track, girl tied to it, train’ll be along any minute…it’s a classic!”

“Yes, but since when are you a classic villain?” Catrina retorted. “You’re the ex-mistress of Character Hell, for Pete’s sake. You should know better. Shouldn’t you have just shot Jennifer through the head or something and walked away?”

“What?” Jennifer exclaimed, suddenly alarmed.

“So maybe I wanted to try classic villainy this time,” Susan defended herself. “Why should Katrina have all the fun? Besides, I can’t just shoot her, my laser rifle ran out of power during the last battle we had.”

“Oh,” Catrina said. “Well, I think I saw a Radio Shack about two blocks from here; they could probably replace that for you. Maybe throw in an extra, just in case.”

“Indeed?” Susan said. “How helpful! I’ll go by there right now. Be back in five minutes.”

Catrina waved as she departed. “We’ll be here!”

“I’d really rather not be here,” Jennifer ventured.

“Oh, shush,” Catrina said. “You’ll be fine. She’ll come back and try to shoot you, but I’ll deflect the laser bolt and knock her unconscious. Just like old times. After all, it’s not like an actual train’s going to-”

Toooooot. Toooooot.

“EEEK! IT’S A TRAIN!” shrieked Jennifer unnecessarily.

“So it is. Well. No problem. I’ll just-hm. Oh dear. It seems she’s tied you down with trans-dimensional cortosian electro-ropes. Probably got them from some weird alien planet. My Sporksaber doesn’t seem to be cutting through them so easily. This…” Catrina said as crimson Spork-energy flared about her face, “this could be a problem.”

Will they ever survive? Or will Catrina find herself getting killed off yet AGAIN? To find out, tune in next week for the exciting conclusion. Meanwhile, for previous episodes in the Catrina Chronicles, go here. To check out the novel that Catrina didn’t go on strike for and thus actually finished, go here. Thanks for reading!

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6 Comments
  1. I had to chuckle at the Sponge Bob fan. I’m glad to see they license more than on cartoon franchise (Winnie the Pooh floaties.)

    You certainly left it on a cliffhanger. I want to know if she’s got another trick up her sleeve or if it’s curtains for her.

    You probably explained this in an earlier episode, but I can’t even remember what I did yesterday…I’m confused by Catrina/Katrina- who is who?

    • To quote the Princess Bride, I will explain. No, there is too much; let me sum up. 😛

      Basically, Catrina’s my primary heroine for the Catrina Chronicles. She’s got black hair, green eyes, and a birthmark shaped like Newfoundland on the back of her neck. She’s generally good, although she’s a bit hasty sometimes. Also she wields a red Sporksaber. She’s originally from the 12th century.
      Katrina started out in 2016 as an inaccurately-portrayed movie version of Catrina. Due to time travel and a few other mishaps, she turned evil. She is blond, and has a birthmark shaped like North Korea. She also has a green Sporksaber. So, Katrina is sort of Catrina’s clone, except slightly more psychotic. I hope that clarifies things; the Catrina Chronicles bounce around so, it’s hard to sum up coherently. 😛

      • Ah, that actually makes sense. I suspected they must be tied in some way. (In my defense, I’m not a sci fi/fantasy reader…except for occasional blog stories here and there.) Thanks for taking time to spell it out for me!

  2. ConCLUUUUUUsion? can i really be this close to being all caught up?! You’re gonna have to write me some more stories to read 😀 But at least this way I can say I achieved another of my goals…even if I will have more to read immediately after achieving it. woo!

    • I’m planning to write more as soon as possible; I’ve got two whole story arcs set up, what with the pirates and ninjas and the Shovel of Thor, and a new character I’m planning to add. 😛

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