The Coolsville sun beamed down onto the town like a bright smile from an old friend- in the Meadowpark Lane neighborhood came the sound of Blink-182's First Date blaring from a radio on the porch of the five bedroom house nearby.
There in the driveway stood two teens and a Great Dane, washing up a multicolored van.
Fred chuckled at the joke Shaggy had just made his way- the boy wearing a blue tank top and a pair of white shorts whilst washing the Mystery Machine. A lot has happened in the past nine months since they'd solved the case of the Black Knight.
He and Daphne had finally stopped bickering and even went out into a date-leading to a strong relationship forming between the two. Fred grew out his hair, the blondes hair now reaching down to the back of his neck, instead of stopping at his ears. He'd had it parted and combed into both sides in the front (basically his Monsters Unleashed haircut).
Shaggy couldn't help but smile as he watched Scooby dancing around with the water hose while the music played. In the past nine months, things had only gotten better. With help from Mayor Jones, Mystery Inc. had gotten sponsored and had solved many cases as the town's best junior detective agency.
And he and Velma had sparked up something new- a relationship. Though they kept it a secret from the others in the group. Even Scooby-Doo, who had major suspicions whenever Velma joined them on movie nights.
Shaggy's hair too had grown longer, but still maintained that scruffy look that earned him his nickname. He wore a green short sleeve tee shirt and a pair of brown shorts currently- looking over to the radio as the radio announcer's voice ended the song.
"Alright Coolsville, we got a new one for ya, a tribute to our favorite junior detectives and of course- Scooby-Doo! Here's What's New Scooby-Doo by Simple Plan!"
As the song began, Shaggy dropped his sponge onto the ground, left in shock at the artist. Fred smiled wide and began to laugh "Dude are you serious!!?"
The two began to dance along to the song, soon catching onto the hook while Scooby ran past Shaggy.
"Like, man this is unbelievable!!" Shaggy exclaimed as Fred finished wiping down the hood.
"I know! Hey Scoob, how's it feel to have a song about you?" He asked, turning to face the Great Dane as he walked over to the two.
"Rood!!!" Scooby shouted, Shaggy and Fred smiling. Though Fred lifted an eyebrow at this. "Just good? Scoob you've got your own theme song now!"
The two teens looked on in confusion, until they felt something- as though someone were watching them. They turned around, their attention now panning towards the roof where a figure wearing a black hooded cloak stared down at them. The figure's face was gross and distorted- as though it had been burned and mangled beyond recognition, with warts littering his nose and mouth area.
"Oh...like, you meant hood." Shaggy said with a gulp.
Fred winced at the Gruesome appearance, while Shaggy and Scooby shook in fear. Despite their newfound mystery solving fame- the two still hadn't gotten over the fear they felt with each case.
Fred moved an arm over the two of them, acting as a form of human shield just in case, before shooting a look the figure's way.
"Can we help you?" He asked, the figure seemingly ignoring his words before letting out a wild cackle that turned Shaggy and Scooby-Doo's stomachs.
"Mystery Incorporated! I have a task for you. A mystery for you to solve."
Fred looked to the other two before looking back at the man. "What kind of mystery?"
The sounds of gravel crushing beneath the all terrain tires of the Mystery Machine filled the empty streets of the town they'd just driven into via a backroad.
"So we're here to investigate experimentation on animals here?" Daphne asked as she ran a comb through her auburn hair, before gently adjusting the hem of her lime green shirt, the purple button up jacket she wore over it fitting a bit snugly to her frame. She wore with that a pair of dark purple pants and a pair of light purple flats.
Velma nodded softly as she looked over the history of the town on her laptop, her glasses resting on the bridge of her nose before being pushed up further. She wore an orange jacket over a yellow Tee Shirt that read "MI" in brown lettering, along with brown shorts and orange converse shoes.
"Yup. This Mister E dude wants us to check it out for a payment." Fred confirms as he pulls to a stop in front of a factory. He now wore a blue letterman jacket with white sleeves, white buttons and the letters MI erected over the left breast in orange lettering. Along with that was a simple pair of faded jeans and blue converse, a white tee shirt beneath the jacket.
"Man this place puts the run in rundown." Shaggy comments from the backseat as he finishes off a cheeseburger. He wore a long sleeved pine green shirt, khaki cargo shorts and black shoes.
"Reah, rundown." Scooby says as he chuckles to himself while sipping from Shaggy's milkshake, unbeknownst to the teen. The group made their way towards the entrance , finding the doors to be locked up by chains around the handles.
"Welp, we tried. Better luck next time." Shaggy said as he began to walk away, finding himself being dragged back by the neck of his shirt with Daphne's hand attached to it.
"Oh no ya don't you big chicken." She comments as Shaggy is drug along with the rest of the gang, the shaggy haired teen giving a sigh of annoyance as Scooby began to follow.
The town was dead, and the moonlight didn't help to put the two chickens of Mystery Inc. at ease in the slightest. Fred took the lead with a blue flashlight ready in hand as he picked the lock to the gate. The gate slid open slowly then, and the old wooden sign that "welcomed" the town's visitors was now clear as day on the side of the road.
"Welcome to Gatorsburg…" Daphne said as she read over the decrepit sign, a soft chill going down her spine as the teens trudged along. The subtle breeze that accompanied the air was a bit off considering the time of year. It was only the beginning of summer, but even still the cool breezes would've ceased by now.
Fred took the lead , as usual on their mysteries, and found himself shining his flashlight ahead of everyone, given the majority of the street lights were off. "This whole town looks abandoned. Why would there be a mystery here?" Shaggy wondered aloud.
"Abandoned town means no one to snoop around in illegal business." Velma explained, Fred giving a subtle scoff.
"Cept us." Was the blonde's response to her. He suddenly came to a stop, everyone following suit as his light panned down to the ground in front of them, Fred reached down to pick something up, and arose with what appeared to be a piece of green leather in between his index finger and thumb.
"Looks like gator skin." He said, Daphne leaning over his shoulder with a slight grimace.
"Ugh, gross. And incredibly out of fashion." She said, causing all eyes to turn to her for a moment. "What? It's true."
Fred gave a subtle eye roll as he turned towards Velma. "Care to do the honors?" He asked her, watching as she reached into her satchel and pulled out her microscope and a blank slide.
"Huh. Apart from the leather itself there's a few small hair particles in here- and Fred's fingerprints." She said, shooting a glance to the blonde as he chuckled sheepishly. "We need latex gloves for stuff like this. Can't find too much more besides the hair an- jinkies." She said, instantly causing everyone to look closer.
"There's a strange strand of some type of compound on here. Blue in color." She said.
"Huh, well that's a start." Daphne said as she looked back down the Main Street, her eyes panning over each shop that stood in their wake. It was a chilling sight, the ghost of a town. But it was their job to search it and bring who or whatever was causing trouble to justice. A detective's job after all. Out of the corner of her eye, she could just vaguely see something rush from the side of one store to the side door of another.
"Jeepers!" She called, alerting everyone present to turn towards her.
"What's wrong Daph?" Fred asked, moving to her side and staring off where she'd been looking.
"I saw something go into that store over there." She pointed straight ahead.
"Well let's check it out." Fred said then, ignoring the gulp that Shaggy and Scooby gave out as the words escaped his lips.
The group made their way over to the building, stopping to stare up at the sign plastered above the door. "Gil's Fish and Bait shop." Fred read aloud, turning to Velma who'd already taken her laptop out.
"Ran by Gil And Shiane Filmore. It was Gatorsburg's prime bait and tackle shop for thirty five years, but when the town shut down it did too." She said.
"Why did the town shut down?" Fred asked as he looked back to the store.
"Searching...got it. Gatorsburg was shut down in 1995 after a major gas leak rendered the area toxic. It was declared clean eventually but former residents were too hesitant to move back in."
"So this place was abandoned over such a thing? Jeez." Shaggy said as he looked into the window of the shop, watching as a shelf rattled slightly. He jumped away from the window and found himself tripping over the curb. He would've fallen into the street had it not been for an outstretched hand from Velma.
He looked to her with a smile as she pulled him back to his feet. "Like, thanks." He said, watching as a subtle blush came to her cheek. She sent a friendly punch into his shoulder.
"I can't have you getting hurt on us. Would depreciate the value of the team." She said. The two stayed in each other's eyes for a moment but soon broke apart as Fred and Daphne looked over in questioning.
"What made you jump like that Shag?" Daphne asked as she too turned towards the window.
"Like I saw something in there man. I don't know what it was but it was freaky." He explained, his voice a bit shaky.
The others pondered the thought for a moment, with Fred moving towards the door first.
"And of course we go in." Shaggy said with a sigh as Scooby placed a paw onto his shoulder. He'd thought it was a gesture to keep him calm, but soon realized it was just the dog moving to hide behind him.
"It's locked." Fred said as he moved to one knee. Daphne smirked and moved beside him.
"Allow me." She said as she reached into a pocket and pulled out two bobby pins. She pushed one into the keyhole and began to carefully maneuver it around the shape. After a moment, they heard the subtle click on the lock and were able to open it with ease.
"Nice." Fred said as Daphne pushed the pins back into her pocket. "Where'd you learn to do that?" He asked, Daphne giving a shrug.
"My dad taught me when I was little." Was her nonchalant response as she walked into the shop, leaving everyone with concerned looks behind.
Fred and Velma shrugged it off and moved in while Shaggy and Scooby walked slowly.
"Man this place is dark." Shaggy said as Fred turned on his flashlight. It didn't give off much illumination, definitely not able to light the whole room. But it did shine a perfect view on things that were in its path.
He moved it over each and every shelf, the gang maintaining their formation behind him. The light moved over several shelves- fishing line and hooks. Bait and tackle boxes, nets. But nothing out of the ordinary yet.
"Nothing yet." He said, his head suddenly whipping around as one of the shelves tumbled slightly. The light hit that shelf and a box of fishing hooks fell to the floor with a soft clatter.
"Alright...maybe there's something here." He said with his eyes a bit wide. He began to move towards the shelf and kneeled down to look at the box of hooks. He reached out to pick it up, but was stopped by the sound of sirens wailing in the distance.
"Is that the cops?" Daphne asked as Fred looked out the window. The flashing of blue and red lights confirmed it for them, and they began to make their way out into the street.
The car pulled to a stop right on the curb, each teen watching in confusion as Sheriff Bronson got out and locked his eyes onto them. "Ugh, Mystery Inc again?" He asked as he brought a palm to his face. "Why can't it ever be something simple, like an actual break in?! Not a group of teen sleuths snooping around?!" He asked, looking to the sky.
"Uh, Sheriff?" Fred called, snapping the man out of his moment. "What are you doing here?"
"I'm here because I got a report of a van making its way over to an abandoned town. Figured I'd investigate...would be you guys." He said the last part with a sigh as he leaned against the door of his squad car.
The gang was at a standstill there, not knowing what to say. Fred spoke up finally. "Uh, we're just here on an investigation." He told the Sheriff, who gave another sigh and stood up straight
"Yeah, yeah, but you're not supposed to be here." He said as he drew a palm to his face. "Look, just get outta here before I have to arrest you- and Lord knows I don't need all that paperwork."
The gang moved away from the store then, each looking back at the sheriff as they trudged back down the street. Even as they reached the Mystery Machine, the man stood tall with his arms crossed and a stern face.
Finally, the van pulled away from Gatorsburg and headed back towards Coolsville.
The teens stormed into the house in a ranting mode, Scooby staying back to close the door before rushing up the stairs behind them.
"I can't believe the sheriff just pulled that! And who would've called him? There was no one else in that town!" Fred complained as he sat down in the chair beside Shaggy's messily arranged desk, flicking on the lamp a moment later.
"I just don't get it, why is this such a big deal anyways? Not like we were going to steal anything. I mean, the sheriff knows what we're about." Daphne complained as she sat promptly on Fred's lap, watching as Shaggy and Velma seated themselves on the bed and Scooby sat on the floor beside them.
Shaggy, ever the optimist, tried to calm them down. "Like maybe it's for the best guys. I mean, who needs a paycheck from some creepy guy in a hood right?" He asked, watching as everyone present, save for Scooby, glared at him.
"We can't live off of our parents forever, Shag." Fred said. He looked to Shaggy with a frown.
Daphne chimed in. "And we can't get real jobs, we wouldn't have time for any mystery solving then."
"Logically, getting paid for solving mysteries is our best bet." Velma said, much to Shaggy's chagrin. He enjoyed solving mysteries as much as the next guy, but he would openly admit that they scared the life out of him.
Fred looked at them then. "And besides...he offered 20,000."
The collective gasp that filled the room was soon followed by a brief silence. "20,000?!?" Daphne had shouted as she turned to Velma.
"That's 4,000 for each of us if divided up properly- with not imminent taxing of course." She explained was Fred nodded and looked to Shaggy.
"Think it's worth it?" He asked, watching as his childhood friend shook his head.
"Like dude, you know I'm not big on material things...but if it'll make you guys happy…" he said, getting a smile in response.
"Awesome! We'll figure something out tomorrow, but we can't just give up on this mystery. This is a really good chance to make a legitimate check!" Fred said, everyone looking to him with a smile, even Shaggy. The shaggy haired teen laid back on his bed.
"Like, alright. But uh, next time let's go when it's not dark out."
This got a laugh out of everyone in the room, that laughter carrying outside the Rogers' household.
Into the night, that same hooded figure watched from across the way, his eyes glowing a vibrant golden tone in the Coolsville night. He gave a soft growl as he turned and carried on his way.
Coolsville High- The Next Day
The Mystery Machine pulled up into the school parking lot at a slower pace, the back bumper dragging along the lot as it trudged along. Fred gave out a sigh of frustration as he parked the van and got out, gently shutting the door behind him then adjusting his white tee shirt in the mirror.
"Okay...no big deal. Just a faulty bumper." He said as he looked at the purple bumper that was almost completely on the ground now. "And...and a shorty transmission."
It was sad but true, the Mystery Machine was once again becoming frustrating to keep up. His parents had stopped funding his mystery solving ventures after he told them of his need for independence- Perhaps he spoke too soon?
As he slung his bag over his shoulder and walked towards the school, he tried to focus more on the upcoming lessons for the day. All of those thoughts were halted when someone purposely bumped into him, causing him to lose his train of thought.
He looked at the offender and only felt a swell of disgust at who it was. Shaggy's ex-girlfriend, Rachel.
"Sorry Freddie. I like, didn't see ya there." She said, much to his disbelief.
"Obviously." Fred responded before moving to walk away, only to be stopped by Rachel stepping into his pathway.
"Anywho, now that I've got ya here. Are you doing anything Friday night?" She asked, watching as he looked at her in annoyance.
"Yeah, going to the movies with; Velma , my brainy friend who's like a sister to me, Shaggy, my best friend you broke up with and Daphne- my girlfriend. And of course, Scooby-Doo, the best dog in the world." He said with a fake smile plastered on his face. He moved past her and kept walking then, leaving the girl behind.
As he walked along, he was soon met with the oak green long sleeved Shaggy at his locker, looking over with a look of confusion. "Like , what was that all about?" He asked. It occurred to Fred that he'd seen the whole altercation between him and Rachel.
"Rachel wanting me to date her again. I'm getting real tired of it man. I don't see how you dealt with her for two years." Fred said as he popped open his locker and began to empty out his bag.
Shaggy chuckled at this and bit into a granola bar. "Like it's better you than me man." He said, getting a playful glare from Fred in response. The blonde returned his attention to the locker, but then asked with a sly smile.
"So how are you and Velma?"
Shaggy choked on the granola bar and looked at him in fear. "W-what?"
"Shag, I'm a detective. We all are. It didn't take Scoob, Daph and me very long to figure out what was going on….we support it." He said with a smile as he shut the door, watching as Shaggy let out a breath of relief.
"It's been going on for about five months now...our relationship I mean." He said sheepishly, Fred throwing a large arm around his neck.
"That's awesome! Now we can go on a double date..well with a fifth wheel."
Shaggy chuckled as the two began to walk down the hall. "Sounds awesome."
Alright so, after much time running over stuff in my head, I finally found my faceclaims for Mystery Inc.
So, without further ado- here we go
Fred Jones - Dacre Montgomery
Daphne Blake- Kate Macnamara
Velma Dinkley- Madysin Shipman
Shaggy Rogers- Charlie Drummer
Scooby-Doo- Snoop Dogg….lmfao jk, Frank Welker.