Moon Folly

Disclaimer: All Harry Potter names, characters and locations belong to J.K. Rowling. All Animal Crossing names, characters and locations belong to Nintendo. I own nothing that you recognize.

Written for The Great 2021 Prompt Compendium
Prompt 31: write about an adventure.

A/N: Thanks again to Panoots, whose video and commentary inspired this story. Thanks to SuperMega as well. This is basically Putt-Putt Goes To The Moon mixed with Animal Crossing and Harry Potter. Because there was a bull on the moon in that game, so why not? He had to come from somewhere.

Our story begins on the sandy beaches of Saltwater Shore, the scent of jasmine and honeysuckle perfuming the evening air. Here we see Rodeo the bull, who is busy setting up his telescope for a night of stargazing. However, he appears to be having some trouble, thanks to the overabundance of flowers lining the grassy areas of beach.

The flowers were making him sniffle and sneeze, forcing him to stop and blow his nose on a soggy handkerchief. It was bad enough when the local flora consisted of tulips, carnations and roses, but the human who lived on the island had recently planted an overabundance of blue and purple hydrangeas. This made Rodeo's eyes water until they were sore and irritated, giving them a distinct scarlet hue.

But despite all of his sneezing, itching and excessive amounts of phlegm, the bull still managed to go about his business as usual, catching some fish and suspending them over a crackling campfire. And now, with a belly full of roasted salmon and his telescope pointing towards the skies, he could finally settle in and see what the heavens had to offer. Or so he thought.

He figured he would have an excellent view of the night sky once he managed to escape the city lights. But his eyes were watering so much he could hardly see a thing.

The tremendous bull sighed, wiping his streaming eyes and squinting through the telescope lens. His eyes were running so much it looked like he was crying. And when Cherry passed by on her way to the beach, she took one look at his red, watery eyes and assumed that he had in fact been crying.

"No, I'm fine," Rodeo snorted, his voice sounding oddly muffled. He motioned towards his drippy schnoz. "Allergies."

"Ah, I see," said Cherry, nodding and shouldering her fishing rod. "Sucks to be you, pal. I actually love the flowers that bloom around here, though I know you wouldn't think that just from looking at me." She chuckled, giving Rodeo a sly grin. "Sometimes I like to collect them, picking great big bunches of dasies whenever I come across them on my way out for some fishing."

"What for?" Rodeo asked, still sniffling and wiping his eyes.

"For drying and pressing, of course!" Cherry replied, as though it were the most obvious thing in the world. "Muffy and I like to press flowers as part of our spring vacation activities. They make beautiful bookmarks, and sometimes the human will give us extra flowers for pressing."

"That's nice," the bull snuffled, sounding rather uninterested in this floral hobby. He then blew his nose and plastered the palm trees with mucus.

After sneezing his brains out for a good five minutes, he decided that he'd had enough of this vacation. He was tired of sneezing and being miserable, he was tired of the earth and all the trees and flowers that were giving him a headache. That was when he remembered his dream of becoming an astronaut, and a smile slowly spread across his face.

That was the solution to his problem. All he had to do was build a space ship and leave the Earth behind, because there were no plants and allergins in space.

Rodeo packed up his telescope and hauled it back into his tent. When morning came, he asked the human if they had some extra crafting materials. Specifically metal. Lots and lots of metal, so he could start building a space ship.

He gathered supplies from the other villagers, building and crafting until the sun began to set. It was difficult work, taking up most of his free time and depleting his stash of coffee. But he kept on working and guzzling coffee, until finally he fell asleep long after midnight had passed, his furry form slumped over the heap of metal he was shaping into a space ship.

That was how Cherry found him, his cheek pressed against the cold steel, slumbering peacefully while drooling down the side of his metal space craft. She just shook her head and sighed, leaving behind a plate of snacks on the workbench beside his crafting materials.

It took several weeks before the miniature space ship was finally complete. By then the delicate springtime blossoms were fading from the trees, and C.J. was running around the different islands, announcing that he was going to hold a summer fishing tournament.

With some help from his friends, Rodeo hauled the space ship outside. Cherry stood off to the side, staring at its grand design in awe. Freya was all excited, saying that she wanted to go for a ride in his space ship, and Muffy just gothed out as usual, appearing less enthusiastic than the others.

"Why did you build this contraption?" she asked, twirling a tuft of inky black wool around her hoof.

"Because I need a break from the allergies," Rodeo said, his eyes still bloodshot and sore. He sniffled and blew his nose, then tucked the faded handkerchief into his pocket.

"Can I go with you?" Freya asked, her tail wagging excitedly.

"I want to go too," Goldie said. "Space exploration sounds like so much fun."

"It does sound interesting," said Apollo, thoughtfully rubbing his hooked beak. "A moon mission wouldn't be out of the question, seeing as how it's the closest celestial body orbiting our planet."

Muffy snorted. "You're old enough to remember the first lunar landing," she told him. "You can just stay here. You've probably been to the moon anyway and planted a flag up there."

Now this was going to be a problem. There were so many villagers who wanted a ride in his space ship, but Rodeo hadn't thought about taking anyone with him on his journey to the moon. The ship he'd built was only big enough for himself and some supplies. So there wasn't enough room for all of his friends.

He was pondering this dilemma when two humans magically appeared on Saltwater Shores. The first was a young woman with pale blue hair. The other was an older man who smelled strongly of eucalyptus and death.

Rodeo held his nose when he caught a whiff of the silvery haired gentleman. "Oh, hello," he said, trying his best to sound polite. He greeted them with a smile, even though his eyes were watering from the stench. "My name is Rodeo, and it's a pleasure to meet you, chaps!"

The lady with the pale blue hair stared at the friendly bull, as though she were thoroughly perplexed by the sight of this talking creature. "Dude, I didn't know this world had like, talking animals and stuff," she said, looking over at her companion.

The man with the silvery hair rolled his mismatched eyes. "You'll have to excuse my associate. She's been partaking of the herbs, if you will. My name is Gellert Grindelwald," he said, extending his hand to the sentient creature. "A pleasure to meet you, my fine lad."

Rodeo was a little confused, but he smiled anyway and shook his hand.

"Ooh, is that catnip I smell?" Raymond asked, taking a step closer and inhaling deeply.

He approached Grindelwald, the ruffles on his dress fluttering gracefully in the wind. The two cat men blinked and stared at each other. Raymond's mouth opened slightly, one paw held in front of his lips, and Grindelwald smiled.

"You are gorgeous," said Grindelwald, scratching the cat behind his ears. "And you have excellent taste in clothing, my fine feline friend."

Raymond batted his eyelashes and purred, thoroughly enjoying the attention he was getting.

Muffy whispered something about Raymond finding his "hooman counterpart". Apollo shrugged, saying that was probably a good thing. Delphini, meanwhile, had begun to explore the inside of the space ship. She had crawled inside on her hands and knees and was examining the interior, along with all the buttons, dials and knobs while complaining about how small it was.

Rodeo almost had a heart attack when he looked over and saw Delphini wedged in the doorway of his space ship. The entire scene looked like Winnie the Pooh had gotten stuck in the honey tree, with only Delphini's backside visible in the doorway.

The witch grunted and swore profusely, her palm pressed against the cold steel walls. "I can't move in here!" she complained. "Dude, I think I'm like, stuck or something."

"Stuck?" Rodeo gasped, perspiration dripping down his cheek. "Oh dear."

Raymond took one look at her fanny and held up a paw. "I ain't touching that thing, sister!"

She continued to squirm and curse inside her steel prison, until finally she reached into her pocket and pulled out her wand. There was a brief flash followed by a muttered incantation, and the inside of the space ship started to expand.

Curious as to what had taken place, Rodeo, Raymond and Grindelwald entered the space ship. The bull made it five steps before stopping and staring at the ceiling, which had risen a good ten feet since Delphini cast her spell.

His crimson eyes went wide. "What did you do to this place?" Rodeo asked, unable to comprehend what he was seeing.

Delphini snorted. "Dude, you're like, a talking animal. And you've never heard of witchcraft before?"

She crossed her arms over her chest, leaning with her back against the control panel. There was a soft click as one of the many levers slid into place, initiating the control sequence that turned on Rodeo's space ship.

A multitude of colorful lights started flickering on the dashboard, the engines coming to life with a tremendous roar, causing the ground to quake beneath their feet. Rodeo could only try his best to hold on for dear life, clinging to the pilot's chair while desperately trying to reach the system override controls.

Raymond's fur stood on end, giving him the appearance of an overinflated pygmy puff. "We're taking off!" he shouted, panic rising in his chest.

But despite Rodeo's best efforts to prevent the ship from launching into space, he couldn't even get near the controls. This was because Delphini had started laughing and yanked him out of his chair, her raucous laughter mingling with the sound of Raymond's terrified screams.

"Hang on to your wigs and keys, star child," Delphini called out, the roar of the engine rattling the windows. "We're gonna get crescent fresh for reals now!"

Rodeo struggled to free himself, his arms pinned to his sides by the strength of Delphini's bear hug. He was nearly bent over double when she climbed onto his back, gripping the collar of his shirt as she attempted to ride him around the room.

The ship continued its voyage above the earth, the lakes, rivers and treetops vanishing from sight. They had just passed an orbiting satellite when Raymond let out an earsplitting screech, leaping upwards and sinking his claws into Grindelwald's back.

"Enough already!" the dark wizard exclaimed, straining to reach the frightened feline dangling from his back.

With Raymond still mewling in terror, Grindelwald seized the cat by the scruff of the neck. There was a faint ripping sound as his claws were torn from the fabric of Grindelwald's coat, his paws flailing while his fur puffed up like a marshmallow.

"Calm yourself," Grindelwald ordered, his fellow feline shaking from head to toe. "I do not foresee this ending in calamity. No, quite the opposite."

"How can you say that?" Rodeo questioned. He glanced out the window on his right before managing to crawl out from underneath the blue haired witch.

By the time he made it over to the window, the Earth had become no more than bluish-green sphere in the vast expanse of space. With every minute that passed, they were getting farther and farther away from home, and Rodeo wasn't even sure if they could make it back.

"Oh wow," Delphini said, standing beside him and staring out the window. "I can see my house from here."

"What?" Rodeo couldn't believe any of this.

"Yeah, man. It's like, way over there on the left for sure."

The bull sighed, slumping against the wall then sliding down onto the floor. All he wanted was a little peace and quiet on the moon, away from all the allergies that irritated his eyes and nose. And while they were in fact headed for the moon, Rodeo didn't pack enough supplies to last them very long. Even worse, he only had enough rocket fuel to reach their destination. And yet Grindelwald didn't seem worried about their current situation.