The authoress sits in her chair, a 64oz coffee mug by her side. She's wearing a football helmet and is holding a large wooden bat by her side.
"Mallet me again now…baka muse."
She holds her sadistic little smile and waits, sucking away at the coffee as she scans the horizon, waiting for the attack to come.
Two 64oz of coffee later, the authoress suddenly realizes the flaw in her plan. She has to go and she means go… In fact, she doesn't stop to think too much about it before she jets to the nearest bathroom, leaving the wooden bat behind.
Ten minutes later she collapses in the chair and grabs her bat again, waiting for her muse to show up.
The grip on the bat tightens as she turns.
"You…" she starts. "You… eh? Who the hell are you?"
The short and stocky muse shrugs. "I'm from the temp agency." She clears her throat and produces a mallet. "Now, let's just get this…"
"WAIT A MINUTE!" Istoria says, flailing her arms. It doesn't matter. The temp muse can't really wield the mallet and the large object falls backwards taking her with it. Tiny little fairies appear around temp muse's head and her eyes go swirly.
Istoria looks over and arches an eyebrow. Then she slowly takes off running.
"Don't koshii me," Kaoru says turning on her heel. "I want my son back!"
"It's not my fault," Kenshin wails. "Sano was supposed to be watching them!!"
"It doesn't matter who was watching them," Kaoru retorts. "You should be out looking for him."
"But I have to film a scene later today!"
Kaoru puts her hands on her hips. "So does Saitou-san but do you think he complained when Tokio asked him to go search for their children?"
Kenshin considers the question and starts to snicker. The image of his greatest enemy whipped by a woman is enough to send him into laughter fits. Too bad Kaoru sees this.
"I KNOW what you're thinking!" she says, walking away towards her dressing room.
"Demo koshii… I'm sure he'll be just fine."
"And if he's not?" Kaoru demands. "Let me fill in the rest of the story for you. If something happens to Kenji then believe me when I say you'll never get the chance to make a replacement!"
The door slams shut in his face and Kenshin grimaces, understanding exactly what she said. He shuffles outside and is surprised to find Saitou waiting for him smoking a cigarette.
"No sex?" Saitou asks.
Kenshin nods. Saitou exhales a puff of smoke. He holds out the pack to Kenshin but the redhead shakes his head.
"I don't smoke," Kenshin states firmly.
"You're going to something to calm your nerves."
"I'll take a cold shower." Kenshin pauses. "A lot of cold showers."
Saitou snorts. "You won't last a day."
"Eh, really?" Kenshin says, glaring at the other man. "So you've found smoking works well."
Saitou looks at him reading the underlying meaning in that. He puts out his cigarette and grabs Kenshin by his shoulder, pulling him away from the set and towards the outdoors.
The director sits slumped in her chair with a sigh. She looks at her script and then at the set. She closes her eyes and mutters a quick prayer before turning to the cameras to tell them to prepare to film.
"All right… in this scene Moneypenny will present Bond with the secret file containing information pertinent to the case. Okay?" Kaoru and Sano nod. The director sits back in her chair before leaping up again.
"One more thing!" she cries. "Please, please, please do not break this set. Really… I'm serious. We can't afford to lose another MI6 set."
"No problem, director-sama," Kaoru smiles sweetly. "I only plan on breaking one thing."
"Eh?" Sano says, seeing the gleam her eye.
The director pauses, considers the possibilities and shrugs. With a quick movement of her hand, she starts the action.
"Here you are Mr. Bond," Kaoru says happily pointing out the folder on her desk.
Sano attempts to pick up the folder and promptly pulls away his hand. He looks at the folder and tries it again. Just as before he jumps back. This goes on for at least a minute before the director finally feels the little blood vessel in her forehead pop and she throws down her script.
"Wait a second, I think I can… OWW!" he says jumping back.
The director suddenly notices that his hair is sticking up completely straight in the air… err more then usual. He continues to this until the director walks up and waves him away. She touches the folder and gets a nasty shock.
She steps away and turns to Kaoru. "Did you do anything to the folder?"
Kaoru nods slowly as she watches Sano. "Yeah… but…" she frowns.
"What?" the director asks as she follows Kaoru's gaze.
"Wait! I'll get it this time," Sano says, putting his toe up tries to kick it off the table. "OWWW!" he says stumbling a bit. He gets a determined look and decides to try it again.
"I really didn't think he would keep going at it," Kaoru says softly.
The director looks at her and then at Sano and finally back at her. "You're kidding right? I mean this is Sano."
"God damn it!!! Okay, start rolling film I'm getting it this time."
"Ah Sano," the director says, "I don't know if that's a good id…"
Sano grabs at the folder and clenches his teeth as he pulls it off the table. With a shaking arm, he holds it up to the camera. But it's not as if all the electricity just disappeared. It begins to travel upwards, jumping between the spikes of his hair until…
Sano sniffs in the air. "Is something burning?" he asks.
Kaoru and the director are starting back away. "EVACUATE!" the director cries, running as fast as she can.
Sano watches them. "Where's the fire?" he asks, half joking as they run away.
"IN YOUR HAIR!" Kaoru yells from a considerable distance away.
Now, we all know Sano isn't the sharpest knife in the drawer so it takes him a good five seconds before he realizes what's going on.
Then it's pure pandemonium. His arms are flailing as he runs about. He sees a full glass and dumps it on his head before realizing it was a martini. This creates more of fuss and Sano's getting desperate for any solution.
At this point, the cast and crew are safe. But before they can consider their next option, the entire MI6 set comes tumbling down.
The director throws down the script and starts ranting in several different languages. The crew backs away, fearfully for their lives and sanity is only restored when Kaoru points out the obvious.
"What happened to Sano?"
Kenshin and Saitou quietly stalk across the open lot of the studio, hands by their swords. They come to a stop by a corner and paused. Kenshin peeks around and turns to Saitou.
His fingers move quickly as he relays the next set of orders. Saitou looks at him and frowns. He puts one head on Kenshin's head and pushes it to the ground as he takes a look around the corner himself.
Kenshin's arms flail indignantly until Saitou lets him up. Saitou relays a new series of commands. Kenshin frowns and shakes his head, repeating the initial idea. Saitou looks at him like it's mad and repeats his own idea. Kenshin starts his own again and in a few moments, there's a lot of hand movement and clapping noises as they continue to collide with each other.
Saitou and Kenshin glare at the newcomer with venom in their eyes.
"What are you doing here?" Kenshin asks, eyes flashing between violet and amber.
Shishio shrugs his shoulder. "Maybe I'm here to help."
Crickets are heard.
"Maybe Yumi can't find Soujirou and figured that he was with the other kids."
"Soujirou's 18," Kenshin says.
Shishio shrugs. "You know how women are. He acts a bit dopey around her and she starts seeing him as a kid she should take care of."
Saitou raises an eyebrow. "Yumi… with maternal instincts?"
"That's a frightening thought," Kenshin says.
"Both of you shut up," Shishio states.
"But still," Kenshin continues, "you don't usually take orders from…oh."
"No sex," Kenshin and Saitou say together. Shishio nods grimly.
"Need a cigarette?" Saitou asks, pulling one out.
"Don't get that near him," Kenshin cries. "Don't you remember what happened last time Shishio came in contact with a cigarette?"
Saitou pauses, remember the Shishio-kabob and smirks. He hands Shishio a cigarette, or attempts to before Kenshin reaches forward and smacks his arm away.
"Cold showers," Kenshin says firmly.
Shishio looks at him as if he has said the dumbest thing in the world. "Do you think the water stays cold when it hits me? Like women, it instantly turns hot in my naked… HEY! Wait up!!" he says charging after the two of them.
Kenshin and Saitou pay him no mind and continue walking. It takes ten minutes before Kenshin's conscious kicks in and he stops for a moment to let Shishio catch up. But as he turns around, he realizes Shishio is no where in sight.
The director sits with her head in her hands. It's been a tough day. The MI6 set has already been destroyed. With her muse AWOL writing the next few scenes has been rough. Still, she finally has a good scene for her villains.
Only no one can find Hiko.
"I heard he was going on the biggest bender ever."
The director cringes at the thought. "Well that's just great. What the hell am I supposed to do now?"
"We have a replacement!" Yumi says as she walks in pushing a look alike for Hiko who looks a bit confused.
"Yes, director-sama?" she sings.
"That's… um… wait I know his name. He was in that part of the series that most people never see."
The man stares at her. "Amakusa Shougo."
"So?" Yumi asks. "Watch, I take his head band off him and he looks just like Hiko."
"And if we just dress him up a bit, he'll look even more like him."
"And he knows Hiten Mitsurugi Ryu so it'll be…"
"What?" Yumi says looking over at the director.
The director motions her over. "That's Amakusa Shogo." Yumi looks at her strangely. "He's from the 'Christian Arc'."
"I really don't see what the big problems."
The director closes her eyes. "Yumi… do you know anything about Christianity?"
"Ah… a bit…"
"Okay… let me explain it the terms of Hiko. Think about Hiko."
"Think about what Hiko does."
Yumi pauses and shrugs.
"Everything he does."
Yumi nods a bit more slowly, with a noticeable blush.
"Now think of the opposite and you've got a good idea of what Christianity dictates is necessary to be a good person."
"Excuse me, director-sama," Amakusa says walking over. "I fail to see the problem. This young woman informed me I would be playing the part of Hiko today. A few sword fights will not go against my beliefs."
The director looks up at him. "You do know what part Hiko was playing, right?"
"Hiko is a swordsman"
"That's what he is. But he's playing a Columbian drug lord." Amakusa cringes. "Who sells the drugs to children." Amakusa darkens. "And works with the Neo-Nazi's."
Amakusa clasps his hands together. "I understand. I will eliminate the man known as Hiko."
"No wait, Amakusa," the director calls out. "That's not Hiko it's just his… character…"
But Amakusa has disappeared.
"Not really bright is he?" Yumi says.
The director sighs. "I think he just jumped to a really bad conclusion."
"So he goes and takes on Hiko? Who cares? It's not like Hiko can lose to him and what's one bit character anyway?"
"You feel no remorse for sending a man to his death, do you?" the director asked.
Yumi looks at her. "Meh," she says with a shrug.
Kenshin and Saitou are seated over a map, pondering their next location. So far, several of the studios have been crossed off the map after being thoroughly searched.
"Did it just get colder here?" Kenshin says looking up at Saitou. Saitou motions behind him and Kenshin turns around to see Aoshi standing right behind him.
"Geez," Kenshin says, trying shake off the chill.
"What happened, Shinomori," Saitou snickers. "Misao go and join the rest of the children."
Kenshin jumps up, rubbing his arms. "Ah! Stop with the cold stares! This is worse then when Shishio burned me."
"I would have though him biting you was the worse, Battousai," Saitou smirks. "But I guess you enjoyed that."
Kenshin stands up. "I'm not the one with a little boy running behind me calling me Saitou-sama," Kenshin says, indicating Okita.
"No, just a tall dumb rooster head," Saitou smiles.
Aoshi puts his hand on both their shoulders and pushes them back into their seats and points at the map.
"What the hell is wrong with you?" Saitou demands. "I know you don't talk a lot but even for you this is quiet."
Aoshi says nothing but just sits down very slowly and stares at the map.
"I know!" Kenshin says happily. "Kaoru must have talked to Misao about the children!"
"Yeah right," Saitou says. "This is weasel girl we're talking about. She can't spend more then five minutes away from him. You really think that she would…"
They both pause and look at Aoshi. Slowly they edge away from their seats and stand up. They both look down at Aoshi.
"I think he's frozen," Kenshin says softly.
Saitou reaches forward and pushes him. Aoshi tips over and clatters to the ground. "Huh," Saitou says pensively. "He finally froze solid."
"Get him and Shishio together…" Kenshin begins.
"It's been done," Saitou shrugs.
Kenshin pauses, considers the possibility and pales a bit. Suddenly they both fall silent.
In the distance, a series of drums beating incessantly suddenly begins. The two men look at each other and take off to explore.
The scene is out of Lord of the Flies. The five children are seated around a fire in various states of disarray. They're roasting marshmallows and laughing quite happily amongst themselves.
Kenshin and Saitou walk into the scene and balk. The kids turn to them with feral grins. The men's eyes open up wide. Not at the children but at the entire male cast hanging from the trees.
"What the…" Kenshin starts.
Saitou looks for a moment and nods. "They got them all."
"This is your fault!" Kenshin says suddenly.
"My fault?" Saitou asks.
"Your little terrorists convinced the three sweetest children on the planet to tie up…"
Saitou looks over at him. "Three sweetest children? You aren't counting your hellspawn in that trio are you?"
"Kenji is not a hell spawn!" Kenshin cries. "Kenji, stop pulling that rope around my legs. It's your little triplets of doom that are the root of all the problems."
"They weren't even in the series," Saitou counters. "You three, go sit down now."
"Of course not. If they were, Tokyo wouldn't have survived!"
The fight goes on for several minutes with the four young boys tying up the remaining two men while the Ayame and Suzume make orders from the side.
Too late, Kenshin and Saitou realize their mistake. And by then they're hanging upside from a tree branch.
Saitou looks over at him with a smirk. "You realize that this is all your kid's fault."
Kenshin looks over at him with a frown. "I hate you," he says.
Meanwhile on the set, the women have all arranged themselves around a table. Tea is being served but everyone's nerves are still on edge.
"Well I haven't seen them for hours now," Kaoru says.
"Who?" Megumi asks, joining the group.
"Our husbands," Tokio says.
"In fact, all the men are missing," Kaoru says. "Except Dr. Gensai."
"Well that is strange," Megumi adds.
Wailing is heard and the trio turns to see Misao wailing on the ground about his missing Aoshi-sama.
"Told you she wouldn't last five minutes," Tokio says.
Suddenly, the door is thrown open and the five children run in. Their mothers (and Gensai-sensei) quickly run up and collect them. After several minutes of coddling, Kaoru finally sits Kenji on her lap and tries to get the story out of him.
"It was their idea!" Kenji says, pointing to Ayame and Suzume.
Everyone stares at the little girls in surprise.
Ayame smiles proudly. "We heard about Mother's day and wanted to give all our mom's and aunties a present!"
"No lousy men," Suzume recites, as if she has heard it countless times before.
The women all face fault. "But," Megumi says looking at them, "whatever gave you the idea that we wouldn't want the men around."
"Because Meg-neesan and Kao-neesan and…" Suzume starts.
"Because you all complain about them," Ayame butts in.
The women all look around guiltily.
"But it's not even mother's day!" Misao starts. "That was last month! If anything, it's closer to fath…"
Kaoru and Megumi leap forward and clamp her mouth shut. "What Auntie Misao is saying is thank you very much."
The children all smile. "Now, what should we do to thank our little angels?" Tokio says with a smile.
"I have Kenshin's money pouch."
"I have Hajime's wallet."
"I have Sano's…" Megumi pauses. "Who am I kidding? Like Sano has anything of value."
The women laugh and bundle up the children for a shopping trip to end all shopping trips. The director watches them leave with surprise. Suddenly the air shimmers and her muse reappears, sporting a tan and some floral prints.
"HELLO!" she cries happily. "I'm back from my vacation!" She looks around frantically. "Eh? Where's the temp?" she asks.
The director looks up at her. "Please don't go on vacation anymore," she says.
The muse breaks up a huge smile. "Did you miss me that much?"
"No," the director says. "But I'd prefer to be malleted into unconsciousness before having to write a chapter like that again."
"I don't think it was that bad."
"You weren't here."
The muse shrugs. "Well, it's done with. Do you have plans for the next chapter?"
"Eh, a few but nothing really… WAIT!! Put down that MALLET!!!! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHH!!!"
Twelve hours later…
"You do think they're coming, right?" Sano says, his hair still smoking. "They'll realize we're all missing and come and get us."
"I don't know," Saitou smirks. "Why not ask your master over there, dog-boy?"
Kenshin swings around to face Saitou. "I take it back. I really hate you."