Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 1987
U . F . Foul
Notes: The characters aren't mine (except Cassiopeia) and this utter nonsense is! It was inspired by the episode Clefairy Tales from Pokemon. The scene of April and Cassiopeia is based on a suggestion of Harry2's. This is part of my Exit the Fly verse. Baxter is human again and an ally of the Turtles. His brother Barney no longer works for Shredder.
It was a peaceful October day and the group had gathered at the mansion for a day of celebrating autumn. To everyone's relief, things had been calm since Barney's former patient had broken into the mansion and tried to sever Barney and Baxter's relationship. As October marched on, the group was able to prepare for Halloween without further calamity. They all needed the break.
"I'm surprised," Barney commented as he draped some fake web on the iron gate.
"About what, Buddy?" Vincent asked.
"That I'm actually finding this relaxing," Barney grunted. "That, and watching the Turtles taking care of the leaves." He looked to where they had raked several new piles.
"Bonsai!" Raphael called, and jumped off the wall into one.
The other Turtles followed suit into the rest of the piles. "Mondo awesome!" Michelangelo exclaimed as he rolled about and threw leaves in the air.
Barney leaned on the gate and shook his head. "They've been doing that for hours now and still show no signs of tiring."
Baxter chuckled. "Michelangelo wasn't exaggerating about how much they enjoy autumn leaves." He smiled. "It's fun just watching them."
"And Michelangelo has offered excellent tips on decorating too," Vincent said cheerfully.
"I have to admit, this looks good," Barney said, stepping back to inspect the web. "But we won't be adding a spider."
Baxter smiled a bit. "Oh, you don't have to omit that on my account. I imagine a huge spider would be exactly the kind of morbid humor you might get a kick out of."
"In the past, maybe," Barney conceded. "Not anymore."
Vincent smiled too.
Everyone started at the familiar voice. "Zach!" Leonardo climbed out of the leaf pile and brushed the leaves away as he walked over to the gate.
"What's up, Microdude?" Michelangelo chirped.
"Well . . ." Zach hesitated. "I'd like to tell the whole group, Master Splinter and Miss O'Neil too. Could we all meet for lunch tomorrow at the pizza parlor by Channel 6?"
His friends exchanged looks.
"That's fine with us," Leonardo said.
"We'll be there," Vincent promised.
"Great!" Zach surveyed the yard. "It looks like you're having a lot of fun today!"
"We all felt we could use a break," Barney said. "This is proving good for all of us."
"You could join us," Vincent suggested.
"That'd be great!" Zach exclaimed. "I have to be home for dinner soon, but I could stay a while." He hurried through when Barney swung the gate open and immediately jumped into a leaf pile.
"That's the spirit, Microdude!" Michelangelo chirped.
Baxter watched them with fondness. "It's so good to see everyone happy," he said.
"Including you, Pal," Vincent said. "We all needed today."
"Yes," Baxter mused. "We did. I needed a day to feel peaceful again. And I can see it's helping you, Barney."
"It's nice . . . actually being able to look forward to holidays," Barney said. "I've never enjoyed our birthday more than I did this year."
"The Turtles and Vincent really went all-out to make it happy for us," Baxter said. "And now Halloween is fun as well."
Barney had to smile in agreement. And, Baxter noted, it was overall a softer rather than a gruffer smile.
Zach was completely close-lipped about what it was he wanted to discuss, but he had a blast jumping in leaves, being chased by the Turtles as he scooped up leaves, and helping with the decorations. The others, while they were thoroughly enjoying themselves, were also puzzled as to what he wanted to discuss.
That mystery was not solved until the next day. But when they were all settled and eating lunch, they were even more surprised by what Zach had to say.
"Guys, the school is having a book fair this week and we were thinking how awesome it would be if all of you would drop by one evening while it's on," Zach blurted. "The kids would all love to see you and it would really make the book fair a hit!"
Everyone looked to each other.
"Do the teachers know you're asking, Zach?" Leonardo wondered.
Baxter nodded. "They might have other plans. We might cause the children to be more interested in us than in books."
"Well . . ." Zach shifted. "They hoped that if you guys came, you could encourage kids how awesome reading is."
"There's a problem getting them to read?" Barney blinked.
"Some of them are more interested in their phones and stuff. You know." Zach shrugged.
"Reading is a very valuable experience," Splinter said. "There is nothing else like it."
"It sounds totally gnarly to me," Michelangelo grinned.
"Volunteers can get credits to buy books too," Zach smiled.
"Do they have any comic books?" Michelangelo asked.
"There's probably some graphic novels, yeah," Zach said.
"I'm up for it," Vincent said.
"It might be fun," Leonardo said. "And we might do some good. What do you say, guys?"
Everyone finally chorused in the affirmative.
"I just need to boogie down to Wal-Mart and get a new pizza pan before we go on," Michelangelo said. "I can't find my old one anywhere!"
"That's weird," Zach frowned. "Mom's missing some silverware."
"And I've misplaced my spare glasses case," Baxter remarked.
"My charger disappeared too," Vincent said.
"I guess everybody needs to go to Wal-Mart," April commented. "That's really weird, though, that everybody's losing things at the same time."
"Maybe it's the ghost of missing items," Zach intoned, wiggling his fingers.
"There's no such thing," Raphael snorted.
"It's just a coincidence," Donatello agreed. "It's nothing to worry about."
"When should we come, Zach?" Leonardo asked, deciding it would be better to get back to the situation at hand.
"Well . . . tonight or tomorrow would be great," Zach said. "Tonight is usually the busiest."
"I think we're all free," Baxter said, looking to everyone else. They nodded in agreement.
"We'll totally be there, Microdude," Michelangelo promised.
"Awesome! Thanks, you guys!" Zach exclaimed.
The group sat and talked for a while after Zach had to leave.
"Who'd ever think that we'd get loved to the point that teachers would want us to come to a book fair and highlight the finer points of reading?" Raphael half-quipped.
"Well, I guess when we have a fan club at the school, it makes some kind of sense," Leonardo said. "I'm amazed that we have the fan club!"
"Like, I'm amazed that we have any of it," Michelangelo said. "Especially considering how we first started out."
"We've all come a long way," Baxter said softly.
Vincent smiled at him. "We have," he agreed.
"Of course, there's always going to be people who hate mutants no matter what," Donatello mused. "Caitlyn told me that there's a couple of teachers at their school who are protesting the fan club. But since it's not violating any school rules, there's nothing that can be done about it."
"Good," Raphael grunted. "I'm guessing their complaints are because of stupid things like mutants being unnatural or we're all dangerous creeps or something like that?"
"Caitlyn didn't specify," Donatello said, "but probably."
"Honestly, you'd think that after we've saved the world so many times, people would think more about that," Raphael said. "Instead, they're just so superficial."
"Some people," Leonardo emphasized.
"Well, yeah," Raphael conceded.
"I say just be grateful for what you have," Barney said. "It's so much better than before. You can usually walk down the street without disguises. You have a fan club. Now you're being asked to participate in a community event."
"And we are very grateful," Leonardo smiled.
"Yeah, but I wonder if it will ever get to the point where mutants can hold normal jobs and buy houses and stuff like that," Raphael remarked. "Cassiopeia's still hanging around and she was pretty annoyed about how mutants are usually seen as second-class citizens, if that."
"Well, maybe she'll actually be the one to be able to do something about it," April suggested.
"She's a party girl," Raphael said. "I'm sure she wouldn't want to get into politics."
"She did help defeat Shredder and Krang," Leonardo said. "There's probably more to her than meets the eye."
"Honestly, I figure there's not much point even bothering with mutant rights and all that kind of thing," Raphael said. "The people who are open-minded are already changing. The jerks probably never will."
"Sometimes that's sadly true," Baxter said. "But sometimes some of the seemingly more immovable people can change as well. It just takes more time."
"I guess. But I don't have the patience to bother waiting for it." Raphael stretched. "Anyway, I hope we won't run into the teachers who don't want us to have a fan club. I might not be able to keep myself from saying something that the rest of you might regret."
"Hopefully everyone will have the diplomacy not to do anything that might ruin the book fair," Leonardo said.
"Including Raphael as well as the teachers," Barney remarked. Leonardo was very diplomatic himself.
"Indeed," Splinter said with a quirked eyebrow.
"Okay, okay," Raphael scowled. "I'll try to hold my temper."
The book fair was an interesting sight. Metal cases that opened into shelves lined the walls, while round and square tables with other books were spread throughout the room. Two elongated tables held pencils, bookmarks, and other odds and ends.
"This looks like a kid's paradise," April said as they all walked in. "Especially if they don't get to go to bookstores very often!"
"Like, this is totally radical!" Michelangelo exclaimed. He made a beeline for the graphic novel table. "Plants vs. Zombies! Epic!"
"What versus what?" Raphael gave him a blank stare. "I know he likes weird things, but that takes the pizza pie!"
"Hey, don't knock it till you've tried it, Bud," Michelangelo countered with one closed eye.
"I must confess, I am at a loss to know what children are reading these days," Splinter said. "Besides comic books." He eyed Michelangelo.
"Well . . . these books are pretty cool." Zach pointed to a shelf with a series of books entitled I Survived and listing various historical events for the protagonists to have survived through.
"I see," Splinter mused. "An interesting way to help children learn of world history."
Baxter was looking at a different display, one for younger children. "What If You Had Animal Eyes?!" he read as he stared at a picture of a girl with three-dimensional chameleon eyes.
"Okay. Now that is demented," Raphael commented.
"It's showing the abilities of the different kinds of animal eyes," Caitlyn explained. She took a copy of the book down and flipped through it for them to look at, but froze when she came to a picture of a child with insect eyes. "Um . . . sorry. . . ."
Baxter shook his head and looked away. "It is an interesting premise when the purpose is learning about different kinds of creatures, but it hits a little too close to home for me," he said.
"It would," Vincent said.
Caitlyn put the book back. "You don't have to answer if it's too personal or something, Dr. Stockman, but I've kind of wondered. . . . Was it hard adjusting back to seeing like a human again?"
Baxter paused. "It was hard to comprehend that I actually could see like a human again," he said slowly. "I suppose sometimes it still amazes me. But I would never want to have any other kinds of eyes."
"Oh, totally, Dude," Michelangelo said. "I remember what it was like seeing things as a regular turtle, and seeing things as a mutant turtle-which is pretty much like a human sees-is so much better! I'd never wanna be a human again, but I am glad us mutant turtles see like humans and not like regular turtles."
Baxter smiled. "I'm glad you can experience that, my friend."
Barney was walking past a table of preschool-age books. ". . . Fly Guy?" he warily read.
Baxter stiffened. "What?"
"Oh, don't worry," Caitlyn said. "It's just a fly. It's not a guy who turned into a fly or anything like that."
"That's . . . good to know," Baxter said slowly. He looked embarrassed. "I'm sorry, I'm much too tense and sensitive about this."
"Hey, if anyone else spent two years being stuck like you were, I'm sure they'd be sensitive about it too," Caitlyn said.
Barney nodded. "There's no need to apologize, Baxter."
"Like, totally," Michelangelo agreed.
Baxter gave a weak smile. "Maybe someday I'll get over it."
"But it is perfectly understandable if you cannot," Splinter said.
Michelangelo idly picked up a Pokemon guidebook and browsed through it. "Huh. I wonder how they keep coming up with new designs for these guys," he mused. "There's over 800 now."
"I guess that makes sense, with 20 years of the anime," Barney grunted.
"I wonder how many of them really exist in real-life," Michelangelo said.
Zach looked over. "Huh?"
"Oh . . . it's a mondo long story, Microdude," Michelangelo said.
"And the kids are starting to come in now," Caitlyn said. "You need to get ready to greet them."
"Where should we line up?" Leonardo asked.
"Right here is fine," said a volunteer, gesturing in front of the odds and ends tables.
"That's funny," one of the other volunteers remarked. "The metal stand for the sign on the Entertainment table is missing. I was sure it was here right before we opened."
Everyone looked at each other. One item going missing wasn't so unusual, but they couldn't help remembering their own items that had been seemingly winking out of existence. All together, it was a rather odd rash of petty thefts.
"Okay, somebody is sure a joker around here," Raphael commented. "And I doubt if anyone's laughing."
"None of us would have taken those things, Raphael," Donatello objected.
"No, but they must be stalking us," Raphael said.
Michelangelo stiffened. "What if it's Monroe Q. Flem again?!"
"He's safely locked away, Michelangelo," Baxter soothed. "Anyway, stealing Zach's silverware would really be stretching the idea of Turtles memorabilia."
Michelangelo tried to relax. "Yeah, you're probably right, Dude. It's still mondo bizarro, though."
"No arguments there," Baxter said.
Everyone was relieved that the evening came off well. The antagonistic teachers stayed away and the children were delighted with the guests. Book sales barely slowed all evening and each member of the group found themselves helping a child find a book at some point or other. When they all separated to head for home, each felt satisfied with the night's turn-out.
Baxter, however, was quiet on the drive home.
"Are you okay, Pal?" Vincent asked, looking at him in concern. "I thought things went well."
"Oh. Yes," Baxter assured him. "They did. I was just thinking about how I acted tonight."
"There's no reason to feel embarrassed or shamed, as we told you," Barney said.
"Well, it's not just that," Baxter said. "Maybe it's more that I'm thinking about how I acted shortly after I was returned to being human. Barney, you always seemed to think of me as 'the sweet one,' but I've only really been fulfilling that role at certain points in the last year. I remember when I acted as cynical and skeptical as you usually act now."
Barney grunted. "You never acted that way with me. You always gave me hope."
"I'm glad," Baxter smiled. "I know I tried not to show my cynical side to you, when I was trying to convince you not to work for Shredder."
"It helped," Barney said.
"But it is rather eerie that you started acting so similar to how I did, even down to the exact dialogue patterns and such," Baxter said.
"You probably unconsciously copied your cynicism from me in the first place, years ago," Barney said. "Since I was always cynical as well as angry."
"That makes more sense," Baxter said.
"So the way you are now is more 'you,'" Barney continued, "since it's very similar to the pure personality you had all through the years. It's a less subdued version of it, at least. Meanwhile, when my anger and hatred faded, the cynicism and skepticism that had also long been part of my personality took over and became the dominant traits. I could never be as sweetly optimistic as you are, Brother. But you and Vincent have given me hope and I even have peace. I never used to have either."
"I'm glad you do now," Baxter said sincerely. "And I'm glad Vincent and I could help you find them."
"I'm glad too," Barney said.
Vincent smiled. "I wonder if these bizarre disappearances of items are going to continue," he mused. "Are you missing anything, Barney?"
"I did notice my eraser was missing," Barney said, "but it's probably in the classroom. I don't think it's anything to worry about. Although glasses cases and chargers could be reason for concern. Baxter, was that case empty?"
"Thankfully, yes," Baxter said.
"Then it must just be misplaced," Barney said. "No one would steal an empty glasses case."
"And no one could have gotten inside to steal it," Baxter said. "It's been in my room."
"Unless security still isn't up to par after Johnny broke through it," Barney grumbled. "But this train of thought is growing more and more ridiculous."
Baxter shook his head. "A thief breaking in to steal a glasses case, an eraser, and a laptop charger," he commented. "And a pizza pan."
"Now that must be misplaced," Barney said. "Accessing the Lair isn't easy. No one would do it for a pizza pan."
"I know it sounds ludicrous," Vincent said. "But then it's sheer coincidence that everyone is losing things at the same time?"
"It makes more sense than the alternative," Barney shrugged.
"I'll give you that," Baxter conceded.
"So would anyone else," Barney said.
"Well, on another subject, what did you think of helping out at the book fair?" Baxter wondered. "It seemed like we actually got at least a few children interested in reading."
"Then it was worth it," Barney said. "But if you're thinking of signing up for another shift like Zach asked, I don't know if I'll be available for another one. And another question is, what would we even do with the book credits? Most of what was there was children's books, and I wasn't particularly interested in the few books they had for adults."
"I was thinking we could use our credits for gifts," Baxter said. "We could get books for the children. Maybe for Michelangelo, if there's something he would like besides whatever he'll use his credits for."
Barney nodded. "That works, I suppose."
"I noticed Betty was interested in a book about gems," Baxter said. "I'm all for furthering the love of science."
"Naturally," Barney said with a smile. "Of course, so am I."
That was when a bizarre creature descended from the sky and plopped on the car's hood. "Clefairy!"
Barney threw on the brakes. "What the . . . ?!"
All three occupants of the car stared at the thing in front of them. It was pink and plump, yet apparently could fly, judging from the wings on its back. Its cheerful smiling expression didn't change as it looked in at the trio, but then it turned and grabbed for the car's antenna.
Barney leaped out. "What do you think you're doing?!"
"Clefairy!" it responded. It wrestled with the antenna, pulling it out of its socket. Then, triumphantly, it jumped to the ground and hopped up and down the street. "Clefairy, Clefairy!"
Barney ran back into the car and revved the engine. "It's stealing the antenna!" he cried indignantly. "I'm not letting it get away."
"But what on Earth is it?!" Baxter exclaimed. "I've never seen anything like it!"
Vincent was already looking it up. "I can't seem to find out much, but I'm afraid it's a Pokemon," he said sheepishly.
Barney growled and decided he didn't want to reply.
"It just leaped around that corner!" Baxter pointed.
Barney swerved to keep it in sight.
"Maybe I can call the Turtles," Baxter offered. "They might not be home yet and they should know about it too. Maybe it will run off with something of theirs!"
"Go ahead," Barney said.
Baxter pulled out his Turtle-Comm.
The Turtles were indeed not home yet, as they were just turning a corner and happening upon two Clefairy lifting a bus stop bench.
"Uh . . . what the heck are those?" Raphael frowned.
"Oh, seriously, Dude? They look way too cutesy to be thieves," Michelangelo groaned.
"Clefairy! Clefairy!" the thieves chorused. As they hopped off with the bench, a baseball bat suddenly swung past them.
"Stop, thieving scum!" Casey Jones snarled. "Put that back!"
"Okay, I don't know what's more disturbing," Raphael intoned. "That two pink powderpuffs are stealing a bench or that Casey Jones is going ballistic on them."
"We'd better find out what's going on," Leonardo declared.
"Yeah. We might need to rescue somebody," Donatello said.
Raphael snorted. "Those things are what will need protection," he said.
"Clefairy," one of them snapped at Casey as the baseball bat came at them again.
The second one began to sing a soft, soothing song.
Casey stumbled and fell back. "Suddenly I'm getting very sleepy. . . . Something in that song. . . ."
Donatello quickly pressed a button on the Van. "I'm activating the sound wave modifiers," he announced. "Otherwise, we might fall asleep too!"
Michelangelo let loose with a huge yawn. "Oh, mondo notion, Dude," he mumbled. "It's reminding me of that overly cutesy thing with an attitude in Pokemon that puts people to sleep singing."
It was then that the Turtle-Comm went off. He pulled it out while staring at Casey, who had moved to the sidewalk and had curled up to sleep. "Hey, Baxter," he greeted.
"What's going on, Michelangelo?" Baxter blinked. "You look distracted."
"Oh. Yeah, you could say that." Michelangelo kept staring. "These two pink animals ran off with a bench and Casey Jones tried to hunt them down, but one of them started singing and put him to sleep."
"What?!" Baxter exclaimed in disbelief. "We're chasing a little pink creature that stole Barney's car antenna!"
"Does anyone get the feeling these things may have been committing the weird thefts all over town?" Raphael remarked.
"It sure looks possible," Donatello said. "But what would they want with all these random objects?"
"There's only one way to find out," Leonardo said. "We'll have to keep following them!"
"I hope the one you guys are chasing doesn't start singing, Bud," Michelangelo said to Baxter.
"Right now it just seems to want to hop along chirping 'Clefairy,'" Baxter said. "Vincent thinks it's a Pokemon."
Michelangelo winced. "Uh oh."
"Do you know what they're doing, Michelangelo?" Baxter asked, raising an eyebrow.
"I'm not sure," Michelangelo admitted. "But I have some memory of them stealing weird stuff for a weird reason."
"Don't you just love informative answers?" Raphael quipped.
"I believe the one we're chasing is heading for a construction site," Baxter said.
"No way! Ours are going to a construction site too!" Michelangelo said. "They're probably all going to the same place!"
"Then I suppose we'll see you there in a few minutes," Baxter said.
April sighed but smiled as she stood at her open closet and surveyed her wardrobe. "Really, Cassiopeia," she said to the mutant bat sitting in her window, "it's nice of you to show up wanting to give me some tips on clothes, but I'm honestly not looking to wear what will impress guys. I need to wear what will be practical on my job."
"At least vary the colors and designs," Cassiopeia retorted. "What, do you only have yellow jumpsuits in there?"
"I have some skirts and dresses for assorted outings," April said.
"You need to put some more imagination into what you're wearing!" Cassiopeia said. "It seems like everybody around here except the walking computer just has closets with multiple copies of the exact same things!"
April was amused. "I guess it can seem that way sometimes."
Cassiopeia wasn't paying attention now. "Hey! Didn't you have that weird turtle shell compact on your dresser before?"
April spun around. "My Turtle-Comm! It's gone!" Her hands flew to her head. "Someone must have taken it!"
"Peh. Who would steal that thing?" Cassiopeia snorted.
"Monroe Q. Flem would, but he's locked up," April frowned. "Maybe it's some other obsessed Turtles fan!" She ran for her phone. "I'd better call the Lair and let the guys know."
But it was Splinter who answered the telephone. "Greetings, April," he said. "The Turtles aren't home from the book fair yet. I took my leave of them to walk home. As a matter of fact, it's strange that I arrived before they did."
"Well, I got home a few minutes ago and now my Turtle-Comm's gone!" April moaned.
"How very odd," Splinter said. "Perhaps you should try phoning the Turtle Van and let the Turtles know."
"I'll do that, Splinter. Thanks." April hung up and dialed the phone in the Turtle Van.
Michelangelo soon answered. "Turtles Service," he said, half-jokingly.
"Michelangelo, someone stole my Turtle-Comm!" April exclaimed.
"Uh oh." Michelangelo sat up straight. "I've got a feeling it was a Clefairy."
"A what?!" April retorted. "Michelangelo, this isn't the time for jokes!"
"I'm not joking, Dudette," Michelangelo said. "We're chasing two of them who have a bus stop bench and Barney's after one that took his antenna. They're probably responsible for all the bizarro thefts!"
"Well, this is just great," April grumbled. "Where are you?"
"They're heading for a construction site," Michelangelo said. "Uh . . . I'm not sure which one. They're everywhere!"
"Isn't that the truth," April muttered. "Okay, let me know where you end up."
"Will do!" Michelangelo hung up.
Cassiopeia rocked back. "New York is weird."
"I've never agreed more," April sighed.
Barney pulled in at the construction site around the same time the Turtle Van did. As everyone exited their vehicles, the air was filled with trills of "Clefairy! Clefairy!"
"Guess they're nearby," Michelangelo said.
Baxter walked out ahead, adjusting his glasses. "Is that what it looks like?!" he said in disbelief.
"If you're thinking it looks like a spaceship, you're right," Raphael intoned.
Up ahead was a huge golden orb with a ring around the middle. The hatch was open and what seemed to be dozens of the odd little creatures were hopping towards it. Each was holding a different yet equally unusual object.
"There's my antenna!" Barney yelled. He ran forward and followed the Clefairy into the spaceship.
"Barney!" Baxter exclaimed in alarm. He chased after his brother.
"April's Turtle-Comm must be around here somewhere too!" Michelangelo said. "And maybe that thingamajig from the book fair!"
"And the other missing items are probably already onboard," Leonardo said.
"So we don't have any choice but to go there and try to find them." Donatello glanced to a marquee on a rocket attached to the spaceship. "But according to that, we only have five minutes before they blast off!"
"Oh great," Raphael snorted. "A one-way ticket into outer space!"
"If they can even get this thing beyond the atmosphere," Vincent frowned. "Honestly, I'll be surprised if they can launch it that high."
"We can't take the chance," Leonardo said. "We'll have to be out within five minutes!"
"Oh, I forgot to call and let April know where we are!" Michelangelo exclaimed in chagrin as they all ran up the ramp and ducked down to go through the hatch.
A heavy flap of wings above them caused the Turtle to pause and look up. Cassiopeia and April were descending near the ramp.
"I asked Cassiopeia to help me locate you guys," April smiled. "I figured it had to be a construction site that wasn't being worked on right now, and that narrowed the list down considerably."
"Well, that's mondo awesome and all, but we've got less than five minutes to find our stuff and get off of this thing!" Michelangelo yelped.
April was barely listening. "Is this . . . a spaceship?!" She reached into her bag and pulled out her mini-cam.
Cassiopeia didn't look that impressed. "It looks like they built it by looking at a model kit."
"It's still a spaceship!" April squealed. "This is going to be the top story on tonight's news!"
"Yeah, if us taking off in it isn't!" Michelangelo gulped. He hurried through the hatch, the girls following him.
"Okay, the first person who says 'It's bigger on the inside' is going to regret it," Raphael remarked.
"But you just said it, Dude," Michelangelo smirked.
Baxter had to admit he was fascinated by the creative way the Clefairy had crafted their ship and made use of the odd objects. But when he spotted his glasses case being used to store spare nuts and bolts, he quickly grabbed it and shook the metal items out onto the console. "Barney, where are you?" he called.
In a moment the answer was obvious.
"Give me back my antenna!" Barney shrieked from down the hall. "That car is a classic. I won't have you ruining it by taking part of it up into space!"
"Clefairy!" a Clefairy shrieked in turn.
Everyone ran down the corridor and soon stopped short. Barney was engaged in a tug-of-war with the Clefairy who had stolen his antenna. And the Clefairy seemed just as determined to keep it as Barney was to get it back.
Baxter slipped his glasses case into his pocket before the Clefairy could see it. "Really, that does belong to him," he said to it. "If you want an antenna, why not try a car junkyard? No one would care if you abscond with one from there."
"Clefairy," the Clefairy growled.
"Hey, there's my pizza pan!" Michelangelo exclaimed. He grabbed for it from where it had been set up as a plate on what looked like a mantle. "Gnarly decor, but I need this to cook with!"
"Clefairy!" the Clefairy snapped.
"That pink powderpuff is getting mad," Raphael gulped.
"I'm not feeling so great myself!" Barney retorted. "It stole right in front of me and has no shame!"
"Clefairy!" said the Clefairy.
The spaceship rocked, tipping everyone to the side. "What's happening?!" April cried.
"I think our five minutes are up," Vincent warned.
Barney finally wrenched the antenna away from the Clefairy and turned to run. "Fine! Then let's go!"
"You are awfully touchy about that car, Buddy," Vincent remarked as they fled down the hall while the Clefairy gave chase.
"It's probably the material possession I love most," Barney said. "Aside from my science books and equipment."
"Hey, here's that stand from the book fair!" Raphael announced. He wrenched it off a strange box. "Why do I have the feeling they were trying to use this as a TV antenna?!"
"Then what did they want the real antenna for?!" Barney said in disbelief.
"I guess we'll never know," Raphael said lightly.
They rounded the corner.
"Here's my Turtle-Comm!" April burst out. She grabbed it off the console.
"And my charger!" Vincent stuffed it in his pocket. "And your eraser, Buddy?" He held up a standard board eraser for Barney's inspection.
". . . It looks like it," Barney admitted.
"Here's some silverware," Michelangelo noted. "Do you think it belongs to Zach's mom?"
"Take it and we'll find out," Raphael shrugged.
Michelangelo quickly collected it onto his pizza pan. "So how about we boogie on out of here?"
"There's a small problem with that," Barney said.
"The hatch is already closed!" Leonardo elaborated in alarm.
The group ran over, pressing themselves against it in desperation. Instead they all tumbled backwards as the ship shifted and rocked.
"Oh . . . I'm glad we didn't have dinner before we left," Michelangelo groaned.
"I'm glad I've never had that organic problem of motion sickness," Vincent said.
"We're blasting off!" Raphael shrieked.
Indeed, the ship was leaving the ground. The Clefairy hovered over to them, snipped "Clefairy!" and seemed to feel rather smug about the whole situation.
"That thing is really starting to get on my nerves," Barney muttered.
"I don't think anyone would blame you for stepping on it," Raphael said. "Or kicking it across the room."
"Really, Raphael, there's no need to be cruel," Baxter retorted. "It's an animal that probably doesn't understand what it was doing is wrong."
"But a very intelligent animal, to have helped create all this," Donatello said.
"Well, reasoning with it gets us nowhere!" Raphael shot back. "And anyway, speaking of cruel, they're the ones ripping us off! And now shanghai-ing us into space!"
"I'm sure we'll stay on Earth," Vincent said calmly. "They don't have the right technology for leaving the atmosphere."
"Oh, I hope you're right!" April moaned.
"Not so excited about your big story now, are you?" Cassiopeia grunted.
"I didn't want to be the big story!" April whimpered.
"That's the risk you take," Raphael said.
At last the group managed to untangle themselves from each other. As they stood, Barney had calmed down and now seemed chagrined.
"This is all my fault because I got so angry about my antenna," he said in disgust.
"We all wanted our things back," Leonardo said. "This isn't your fault, Barney."
"Of course it isn't," Baxter agreed.
Barney sighed. "Even so, what do we do now?"
Vincent braced himself against the wall. "I'm trying to hack into their computer system right now. It looks like we're heading out of the city and in the general direction of High Falls."
Raphael snorted. "Oh great! If we crashland there, everyone's going to think we're aliens again!"
"Let's find the bridge," Donatello said. "I might be able to bring us down before we get that far."
"You'll probably have to fight with one or more of these things," Raphael warned, indicating the Clefairy as it bounded off down the hall.
"How hard can it be?" Donatello retorted. "If it doesn't sing, that is."
"It's probably got other attacks that are just as bad, Dude," Michelangelo said.
"You're the one who watched that show!" Raphael exclaimed. "Don't you remember anything more about them?!"
"They didn't appear that much," Michelangelo said. "I think I missed their big episodes."
"Oh, well, that's just great!" Raphael scowled. "The one time I'd like some info on Pokemon and you don't have any!"
"Let's follow that Clefairy," Baxter interrupted, a slight edge to his voice. That was exactly the sort of comment that would have been completely off limits around Michelangelo not that long ago. Baxter didn't like the thought of Raphael trying it out now.
Everyone agreed to Baxter's idea and hurried after him when he chased the Clefairy. Michelangelo, Baxter was happy to note, seemed alright in spite of Raphael's comment.
"This place really is big," Leonardo said. "You wouldn't think such little creatures would have made it so much bigger than they are."
"Well, I'm sure they didn't do it because they were expecting company," Raphael snorted.
The Clefairy bounced into what seemed to be the bridge. Another Clefairy worked a console and studied what looked like a viewscreen in front of it.
Donatello hurried over. "Excuse me," he greeted. "We ended up on your voyage by accident. Is there any chance you could let us off?"
The Clefairy captain looked over at him. "Clefairy," it said in a friendly yet matter-of-fact tone.
"Why do I get the feeling it's saying we're stuck here?" Raphael said as he rolled his eyes Heavenward.
Donatello slammed his hand on the console. "Look, we can't be taken into outer space!" he cried.
The Clefairy captain shrugged. "Clefairy, Clefairy."
"I bet it's saying 'Tough break; it's your fault you're here,'" Michelangelo sighed.
"Which is true, actually," Cassiopeia said.
Without warning the ship careened to the side. Everyone tipped, including the two Clefairy. Then just as suddenly, it tipped to the other side.
"Clefairy!" the creatures yelped. They were baffled.
Vincent smiled a nice, self-satisfied smile. "I've taken control of your ship," he said. "You can either agree to set us down willingly or I can now do it for you."
"Clefairy!" the first Clefairy cried in indignation.
The second Clefairy started to open its mouth.
"It's going to sing!" Raphael screeched.
That was more than enough to convince Vincent to act fast. He wanted to believe he would be immune to the Pokemon's sleep-inducing song, but just in case, he had to make sure the ship landed and that it landed now.
"Hang on," he warned. "This might be a bumpy landing."
Everyone grabbed on to either the console or Vincent. Even as the Clefairy began to sing, Vincent furiously brought the ship down. It rolled back and forth, then tipped backwards and was still.
Slowly Raphael relaxed. "Well, that wasn't so bad. Good work, Vince."
"Yes," Baxter agreed in relief. "Let's all get out and see where we are."
They soon made their way back down the hall and to the hatch. When Vincent opened it and extended the ramp, they all climbed down to the ground.
"It's just an open field," Donatello said in surprise.
"Not just any open field," Leonardo replied. "There's a module hole! We must be near the Technodrome!"
"Clefairy! Clefairy!" The dozens of Clefairy crewmembers were hopping out of the ship, not seeming bothered anymore by the stop. Instead, they all started to jump down the hole while everyone else gawked.
"Oh boy," Raphael grinned. "How about that? It looks like Shred-Head and Krang are going to have some company."
Baxter had to laugh. "I almost wish we could see their expressions."
In a moment, the ground fairly shook as a scream echoed from underground. "SHREDDER!"
Everyone doubled over laughing.
"I guess hearing Krang's reaction to three dozen pink powderpuffs will have to be good enough," Leonardo choked out.
"And what do you want to bet that they're removing all sorts of odds and ends from the Technodrome?" Raphael smirked.
"I've got a better question," Cassiopeia spoke up. "How do you plan on getting home from here?"
Everyone looked at each other.
"Let's go warm up Krang's portal," Raphael said.
"He'll be too busy fighting off Clefairy to worry about us," Leonardo chuckled.
Barney wasn't as sure, but he had to admit the creatures were very distracting. "Alright," he said. "Let's try it."
The Clefairy were indeed distracting everyone. The entire group managed to slip inside and creep past Shredder, Krang, and the mutants while the Clefairy hopped around removing levers, dials, crates, and even an oil can.
"What are you waiting for?!" Shredder roared, shaking his fists to the ceiling. "Blast them to smithereens!"
"They keep jumpin' away when we try to hit them!" Rocksteady complained.
"I don't think there's anything we can do to stop them," Bebop said. A Clefairy bounced off his head.
"Shredder, this is a nightmare!" Krang wailed. "Make it stop!"
"Me?! How are we supposed to fight these things?!" Shredder cried. "Our blasters aren't working against them!"
One Clefairy decided to solve the problem in its favorite way. It opened its mouth.
"Run for the portal!" Baxter said in horror.
Barney, Vincent, and Donatello had just activated it. Everyone jumped through, making it out to their vehicles just as the first hints of sleepiness started to overtake them. Now away from the Clefairy, they were able to shake off the effects.
"Okay. That was weird," Raphael proclaimed.
"That was more than weird," Barney sighed. He was clutching his antenna in one hand. "Did everyone get back what they were missing?"
"I think so," Leonardo said. "Unless Baxter didn't find his glasses case?"
"I did," Baxter said.
"You don't think the Clefairy will come back to get our stuff again, do you?" Michelangelo suddenly worried.
"I don't think so, Michelangelo," Baxter soothed. "I think they'll find everything they want on the Technodrome."
"Much to Krang and Shredder's horror," Barney smirked a bit.
"Well . . ." Raphael stretched. "Michelangelo made a great point about none of us having dinner yet. How about we fix that?"
"Mondo notion!" Michelangelo grinned. "Let's all pig out at Vinnie's!"
Baxter chuckled, but was glad to see Michelangelo was his usual cheery self. "Let's," he agreed.
Leonardo paused. "You know, I wonder where those Clefairy are going to end up when they take off again."
"Wherever it is, it had better not be Manhattan again," Raphael snorted.
"Should we really have left them roaming all around?" Leonardo worried. "They'll probably keep doing this again and again."
"How could we have stopped them?" Raphael shot back. "We don't even know everything they can do! Anyway, sometimes we send things back to Shred-Head and Krang to deal with."
"Yeah, but only if they've sent them to us in the first place," Leonardo said. "I don't think they had anything to do with these creatures."
"Maybe if we hear something about them again, we should investigate," Donatello said. "Otherwise, I really don't know what we can even do, Leonardo."
"I guess you're right," Leonardo sighed.
"And like, I think now maybe I did see part of an episode where something like this happened," Michelangelo said. "The good guys had to just leave them to their own devices because they couldn't stop them."
"How encouraging," Barney grunted.
"They were fascinating," Baxter mused. "I would have liked to have studied them."
"So you want to see them again?" Barney frowned.
"Not necessarily," Baxter said. "They were troublesome. But still fascinating."
Vincent smiled. "Well, maybe someday we'll have a chance to see them when they're not causing trouble and you can study them then, Pal."
"Maybe," Baxter said. "Of course, right now I'm just relieved that we don't have to deal with them anymore."
"I wonder who will," Raphael said.
It was some hours later when a golden sphere flew over a rural town and crashed in a field.
"Well, boy howdy! It's really aliens this time!" Billy Jim Bob exclaimed. "Everybody, come and see! Now we've got our own spacemen for sure!"
The hatch opened and dozens of pink creatures hopped out. "Clefairy! Clefairy!"
"What language are they speaking?!" Scoop Oliver, the town's newspaperman, exclaimed.
"They really are aliens!" Billy Jim Bob cried. "That's no Earth language!"
Soon, other cries rang through the town.
"My pitchfork is missing!"
"Someone stole my crowbar!"
"What happened to my pie pan?!"
Billy Jim Bob stood and scratched his head as Clefairy bounced around him in all directions. "I've gotta say, these are the dangest strange spacemen I've ever seen."
"Who cares?!" Scoop Oliver retorted. "At least I've finally got a story worthy of national recognition! Now where's my camera?!"
"One of those little spacemen took it!" Billy Jim Bob informed him.
"What?!" Scoop Oliver stared in horror. "Come back!" He ran after the nearest Clefairy.
"Dangest strange thing I ever did see," Billy Jim Bob said, shaking his head.
"Clefairy!" A Clefairy jumped behind the wheel of his truck and turned the ignition key.
Billy Jim Bob immediately snapped to. "Come back, little pink spaceman!" he yelped. "You don't have a license!"
"Clefairy, Clefairy," was the almost dreamy reply.
"I wonder what the Ninja Turtles would think about all this," Billy Jim Bob said to himself as he ran. "Maybe I'd better go home and call them."
The Clefairy drove over a hill, heading back to the spaceship.
"On the other hand," Billy Jim Bob mused, "how many times in my life am I gonna get to ride in a real, live spaceship? Maybe I'll just handle this myself." He smiled. "Yeah, that's what I'm gonna do."
The Clefairy stopped the truck and jumped out, bounding back into the spaceship.
With his plans now firmly fixed in his mind, Billy Jim Bob followed.