Old Stuff's Cool Too, Chapter 5; Parappa and the Stoned Sixties Sister!

You thought I was dead, but I'm back and I'm mad at myself that I didn't think of this sooner! What better way to describe the 60s tha- well, you'll see for yourself.

HI! I'm back! Did you miss me? Yes? No? I hope you did. Well anyway, me and the girls all got to Aretha's trailer park and we were all paranoid about goin' in there 'cause of what "Grizzly" Adams had told us. So, we just stood there for a really long time in front of her door, trying to find out who would knock...

***

"I'm not touching the thing," Parappa told Lammy, who had asked him to knock on the AirStream's door. "You knock."

"I don't know what's going on in there!" Lammy shouted. "Katy, you knock!"

Katy's fur ruffled at the mere thought of her hand making contact the trailer. "I'm not touching that thing!"

#Just knock, you bunch of babies!# Ma-san snarled.

"Okay, Ma-san, you do it!" Parappa said while pointing to her. Ma-san purred pensively.

#Uh... no thanks.#

Parappa snarled in anger, looking very dog-like at the moment; he showed his fangs while curling his upper lip and everything! Katy acted uncharacteristically scared and hid behind Lammy.

"This is stupid!" he roared. "How are we supposed to get home in time to explain what happened to my Dad if we can't even agree on who knocks on some stupid door?!"

No one got the chance to answer that question, because the door to the trailer opened and Aretha stumbled out, not moving past the first step. She looked at Parappa with unfocused eyes. "Wha...... do I know you?"

"Yeah, I'm here to sing my way out of this town and get back home before the sun rises!"

Aretha just stared at him and shook her head. "Woah, woah, man. Too many words. Too many words. Short sentences, man" (Parappa checked his ears to make sure his hearing wasn't giving out on him; nope, Aretha was just repeating herself.) "Short sentences."

Lammy and Katy giggled while Parappa spoke slowly. "You and me need to sing a song. If I sing better than you, you tell me where Gloria is. If you sing better, I stay here."

"Oh, yeah!" Aretha tried to snap her fingers, but nearly launched herself off her stoop, making all four of the kids laugh. "Oh, yeah! That's right! You're the... little dog boy that likes rap! Okay, okay, I got a song. Just come inside. Come inside."

Those were the words they did not want to hear; all the kids froze and began to back away. They all began to speak in unison.

"Um, no! No thank you, ma'am, uh, Aretha, um, miss, uh..."

"Uh, sorry, but, uh, we're not allowed in stranger's houses, and you're pretty strange..."

"NO no no no no no no! Not going in there, okay? NO thank you!"

Aretha shook her head to clear her thoughts and nearly flung herself off the stoop again. "Um... Okay... We can... um... do the thing outside, then..."

(The words "Aretha Franklin Beckett" appear at the bottom of the screen. Smoke pours out from the door, making a weird ethereal effect.)

"My music is not about melodies, talent, nothing' like that, man," she cooed. "My music is about heart, about making contact with aspects of the universe unimaginable, and showin' The Man what for, man- woah!" Aretha promptly fell off of her steps.

Parappa gulped and whispered behind his shoulder to his friends. "There is something Wrong with this woman..."

"Don't worry, we're behind you!" Katy Kat smiled. "You gotta believe!"

The puppy nervously twisted his lips into a smile. "Uh.... Okay."

*** (Parappa and Aretha are standing on a big blanket in the middle of the trailer park. A few animals come by to watch.)

(Lesson 1)

(Parappa immediately notices something wrong; Aretha can barely stand on her own two feet.)

Aretha: Picture yourself in a boat on a river

With tangerine trees and marmalade skies

Somebody calls you, you answer quite slowly

A girl with kaleidoscope eyes

Parappa: Cellophane flowers of yellow and green

Towering over your head

Aretha: Look for the girl with the sun in her eyes

And she's gone

(Aretha suddenly slumps towards Parappa; he looks obviously disgusted and shoves her away with gusto. She snaps back into reality.)

Aretha: Lucy in the sky with diamonds

Parappa: Lucy in the sky with diamonds

Aretha and Parappa: Lucy in the sky with diamonds

Aaaaaah

(Lesson 2)

Parappa: Follow her down to a bridge by a fountain

Aretha: Where rocking horse people eat marshmallow pies

(Parappa's rating goes up; Aretha's voice is faltering, making him sound better.)

Parappa: Everyone smiles as you drift past the flowers

Aretha: That groooow so increeeeedibly hiiiiiigh

(Parappa wrings his hands nervously and inches away from the sagging Aretha.)

Parappa: Newspaper taxis appear on the shore

Waiting to take you away

Aretha: Climb in the back with your head in the clouds

(Aretha's eyes suddenly begin to dilate.)

Aretha: And you're... gone...

***

Without warning, Aretha just passed out!

Amid the terrified screams of the kids and the scramble of trailer-park patrons, Aretha was picked up by a neighbor who drove off with her to the hospital. Parappa and company hurried to follow, running as fast as they could to keep up with the truck.

***

"Well, now what are we supposed to do?" Katy complained as she waited for Aretha's diagnosis.

"We need her to tell us where her sister is," Lammy explained, not knowing Katy wasn't being serious. "So, I guess we wait."

"But that'll take too long!" Parappa growled. "How're we supposed to find Ella now?"

A badger in a doctor's coat stepped into the room. "Aretha's fine. She'll be back on her feet in about a week."

"A WEEK!?"

"WE don't HAVE a WEEK!" Lammy shouted.

Parappa whined in agreement. "How are we supposed to get home now?"

The badger doctor startled. "Home? Wait, you've been pulled into the rap thing too?"

The four teens(?) each felt a drop of sweat rolling down their temples. "Too?"

"The Beckett sisters do this with every rapper they come across." The badger doctor adjusted his glasses. "Ella Beckett's house is right down the street from here. The brown house with the green door."

Parappa smiled. "Wow! Thanks!"

"Welcome!"

DONE 'cause I am sick of working on this chapter! Last chapters coming up soon!