Author's Note: Well, it's been quite some time since I wrote anything for Redwall. This is the fandom that started it all, so the inspiration for this story hit hard. I'm very excited to be back! Brownie points to Lady Storm and Dragonpearlninja for encouraging this insanity, haha. You opened a dangerous can of worms, my friends. "Redwall Falls" is loosely inspired by Gravity Falls and isn't meant to be taken very seriously. I hope you enjoy the adventures of paranormal investigators Brome and Rose!
"You're sending us away. For the entire summer?" Brome repeated. School had only been out for a few days and his parents were already ruining his life again. It wasn't fair.
"Seasons, Brome. You make it sound like it's the end of the world. It's just for a few months so your father can work on his re-election campaign without the two of you getting under foot. You'll be back in Noonvale before you know it. And besides," his mother stared pointedly at the controller he was clinging to like a lifeline, "you need to get out more. Who knows? You might even make a few friends."
Rose glanced up from her book and winced (probably because it was such a low blow). It wasn't that Brome hadn't tried to make friends in the past. Other beasts just… weren't interested in his hobbies. They usually found his obsession with the supernatural either perfect ammunition for relentless teasing or just plain kooky.
"I… I don't believe it." Brome muttered indignantly. He'd thought better of denying his lack of social life. It was a losing battle. Why were parents always like this?
"Your great aunt Polly has been asking if the two of you could come visit her for years. I wouldn't have agreed to it if I didn't think you could handle it." Aryah pointed out.
"She's not even really related to us. What if she makes us sleep outside? What if she has a secret evil twin no one knows about? Or worse. What if she doesn't have wifi?!" he protested, anything but convinced by his mother's attempts to reassure him. She raised an eyebrow, in an unspoken really?
"She's your father's godmother. I think we'd know by now if she had a twin. And she owns a tourist trap, so I'm sure wifi won't be an issue." she told him with as much patience as she could muster. Having given up on reasoning with his mother, Brome turned to Rose (who was taking this whole thing remarkably well) and asked, "You're really okay with this?"
"I don't know, it sounds kinda fun. And there are worse places to spend a summer." she replied with a shrug. Brome nodded sagely. She did pose a fair point. He could think of at least 10 places that would be worse than Gravity Falls, even if Great Aunt Polly turned out to have a double life.
"Dance camp?" Asked Brome knowingly.
"Dance camp." Rose confirmed with a shudder.
"Noted," he allowed, "but weren't you saying you wanted an epic summer romance this year? What about that?"
"Well I-yes, I did say that, but I don't see why that couldn't happen just as easily in Gravity Falls." she told him. Darn. Brome was rapidly running out of valid counter arguments.
"But what about…" he wracked his brains for something, anything, good enough to convince his family this was a bad idea. He couldn't.
"Please don't take this up with your father, Brome. You know how it'll end. Just… try not to ruin this for yourself by freaking out over it before you even get there, okay? I'm sure you'll have lots of fun." Aryah said eventually. Brome and Uran Voh were often at odds and their fights almost always turned into yelling matches. Combined with the young mouse's tendency to over analyze everything, she was probably justified in her concern.
"I'm not freaking out, mom. I just like being prepared for the worst." Brome replied honestly as he slipped off the couch. He switched off his video game and fled up the stairs to his bedroom. He flung the door shut and hid under his bed where no one would find him. Stupid parents, stupid Gravity Falls, stupid everything. This was going to be the worst summer ever.
The bus pulled to a stop. Rose put a bookmark in her copy of Love Amongst the Badgers and glanced over at Brome. He was still sound asleep, undisturbed by the screeching of the brakes.
"Brome." the mousemaid nudged her brother. He didn't wake up.
"Brome," she repeated, louder, "we're here."
Still nothing. She tried again, louder this time.
"If you don't wake up right now, I'll leave you on this bus for an ax murderer to find."
"You wouldn't!" Brome protested, finally reacting. Rose only smiled.
"I don't know… you have been pretty obnoxious lately…" she pointed out with a shrug.
"I-I'll be good! I promise!" the young mouse insisted, trying to look innocent. Rose pretended to consider this for a moment before replying.
"Okay. Works for me! Now hurry up and grab your stuff so we can go find out if Great Aunt Polly really is a were-mole – secret agent – alien with a dark secret." she said, shouldering her backpack and pulling her suitcase out from under her seat. Brome rolled his eyes.
"I never said… you know what? I will do that. But not because I want to see if she's got a third eye, or anything like that." he stubbornly relented. He followed her example and gathered his belongings (and a few candy wrappers).
"Of course not," Rose agreed as she surveyed their seats to make sure nothing got left behind. When she was satisfied, she made for the bus's exit, Brome in tow.
It took exactly five seconds to locate their great aunt. Dressed in a brightly colored sundress and fez, she would have been hard to miss. Even her cane, which appeared to have a magic 8 ball attached to it, was anything but subtle.
"Who still wears fezzes these days?" Brome asked under his breath. Clearly he didn't appreciate the elderly mole's sense of fashion.
"Brome!" Rose hissed, not wanting to make a bad first impression on their host for the summer. Great Aunt Polly grinned and waved them over, oblivious to the siblings' conversation.
"Hiya, kids! Welcome to Gravity Falls. A completely normal town, where nothing out of the ordinary happens. Ever. Nice to meetcha!" she greeted, shaking their paws enthusiastically. Rose was caught a little off guard by this description of Gravity Falls, but she tried to ignore it.
"It's nice to meet you, too, Great Aunt Polly. Right, Brome?" she said brightly, elbowing her brother in the ribs.
"Uh, yeah. I, um… like your cane?" Brome jumped in, forcing himself to stop staring at her bizarre ensemble.
"Thanks, kid! All a part of Madam Mystery's charm!" Polly told him with a wink. Rose raised an eyebrow.
"My stage name over at the Shack," the mole explained, "Your father did tell you about the Mystery Shack… right?"
"Not… not really…" Brome began.
"We know he used to spend every summer here and that it's a pretty major tourist trap, but he's usual too busy with his duties as town mayor to tell us much else about his childhood." Rose finished for him. Her heart sank a little as she watched Great Aunt Polly's face fall at this news. She hadn't meant to upset her. But if she'd let Brome continue, the truth would have come out far more harshly.
"Oh. That boy… I guess you'll just have to see for yourselves. Come on, you two, might as well get going." Polly told them after a moment.
"Sure. Which way to your car?" asked Rose, trying to distract the mole from her obvious disappointment. She was curious to see where they would be staying, anyway. Polly nodded towards a rather beat up looking station wagon parked haphazardly between a pair of minivans.
"Right over there."
The two siblings glanced at each other with mirrored looks of horror at the sight of the vehicle. It had quite a few dents in it along with a cracked window. And… was that a bullet hole? For a split second, Rose considered asking the bus driver if he would drive them to the Mystery Shack. Or maybe even all the way back to Noonvale. However, she was pretty sure he'd refuse, and if Great Aunt Polly had managed to make it all the way to the bus stop without dying, then they could probably survive the ride back. Hopefully.
"Are you sure this thing is safe, Great Aunt Polly?" Brome demanded, giving the station wagon a suspicious glare. He'd never been one for risk taking unless it was to spite their father.
"Course it is! Haven't gotten pulled over by the cops in weeks." Polly informed him. She popped open the trunk so they could load their things into it. Brome stared at her with the are you kidding me? look Rose knew all too well. It was the same look he gave their father whenever they argued.
"You mean you've actually been pulled over?" he wanted to know before getting in. Polly shrugged.
"Well… maybe once or twice." she admitted conspiratorially. The young mouse stared at her in awe.
"Woah! I can't believe dad is letting us anywhere near you." Brome said with a grin. It appeared the eccentric mole had finally won her brother over. Shaking off the last of her reluctance, Rose climbed into the station wagon and sat next to him. It was going to be an interesting ride.
"First thing's first," Polly declared as she pulled out of her parking spot, narrowly missing a group of squirrels who were out for their afternoon jog, "we gotta come up with something less formal sounding than Great Aunt Polly. I'm gettin tired of it already."
To everyone who read this, thank you! I have no idea what the update schedule will look like because I am a being of pure chaos, but I fully intend to continue the adventures of the Voh siblings and their Graunt Polly. Feel free to tell me what you think!
-Gwen (formerly known as Summerviolet)