Run For Your Life
By Lucky_Ladybug

"Mister McDuck! Look out!"

Scrooge McDuck's accountant, Fenton Crackshell, suddenly came barreling out of nowhere and tackled Scrooge, bringing them both to the ground, just as a car rumbled by, rolling over the curb where Scrooge had been standing.

"Fenton!" Scrooge said, jumping up, annoyed, oblivious to the danger he'd just been in. "What's gotten into you?"

Fenton shrugged. "Saving your life, for one thing! That car nearly ran you down!"

Scrooge looked around and saw the tire marks up on the curb. "Burst me bagpipes!" he exclaimed. "I owe you an apology, Fenton. Thank you!"

"Oh, it was nothing, Mister McDuck," Fenton replied modestly. He abruptly changed the subject. "Mister McDuck, I think someone's after you!"

"After me?" Scrooge repeated. "Now why would someone be after me?"

"That's what we've got to figure out," Fenton said.

Scrooge waved a hand dismissively. "Oh, Fenton, I'm sure it was an accident, a car out of control."

"But this is the second time in two days that you've nearly been killed!" Fenton protested. "Remember the incident yesterday with the falling scaffold?"

Scrooge paused, considering. Finally he said, "The ropes were probably just wearing thin, and yesterday they happened to snap just as I walked by."

"But then there's the incident with the car just now!" Fenton added. "Don't you think it's just a little bit odd, Mister McDuck?"
Scrooge shrugged. "Even if it was true, why would someone be after me, Fenton? It doesn't add up!"

"What about that new security guard you hired?" Fenton suggested. "He could be after your money!"

"Quacker McFink?" Scrooge pointed his cane at Fenton. "Now, look here—I never would've hired him if he hadn't come highly recommended! He used to work at Fort Knox!"

Fenton sighed. "Whatever you say, Mister McDuck. But I sure hope everything really is just coincidence!"

As they walked on, Scrooge said, in a voice so low only he could hear, "Me too, Fenton. Me too."
Back at McDuck Manor, Huey, Dewey, and Louie were discussing the dangerous "accidents" of the past couple of days.

"Doesn't it seem strange to you that something awful would almost happen to Unca Scrooge two days in a row?" Dewey said.

"It does," Huey agreed.

"But Unca Scrooge doesn't think anything's amiss," Louie broke in. "He thinks they were just accidents, and he happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time."

"But I don't think we do," Dewey replied. "Fenton suggested maybe Unca Scrooge's new security guard is behind all this. I think we should keep an eye on him!"

"Good idea, Dewey!" Huey said.

"Why did Unca Scrooge hire that guy, anyway, when he already had Gizmoduck?" Louie wondered.

"I think he's supposed to be the night watchman, when Gizmoduck generally isn't around," Huey replied. "I heard Unca Scrooge say that he hoped this new guy would actually be able to stay awake at night. That's why he fired the last night watchman, for sleeping on the job."
The nephews looked at each other. "I guess that means we'll have to be up a little late tonight," Dewey announced.
Late that night, the boys' alarm clock started to ring. Immediately Huey reached out and switched it off, hopefully before it could wake anyone else.

Louie was already at the window, wearing a black shirt and a mask. "Let's go, guys!" he said, letting a coil of rope out the window.

Huey and Dewey also donned black shirts and masks and then they all descended out the window.

When they landed at the bottom, Dewey led the way through the bushes, then suddenly stopped. "Wait a minute, how are we gonna get to Unca Scrooge's money bin?"

Huey grinned. "Oh, I've got that all figured out!" He reached into the bushes and pulled out their skateboard. "Okay, everyone, climb on!" he directed.
"Well, this has been a fascinating night," Louie said sarcastically three hours later. They had been watching Quacker McFink for ages, and he hadn't done or said anything suspicious.

Huey sighed. "Just because he doesn't seem to be up to something doesn't mean he isn't."

"You're right, Huey," Dewey said.

Louie yawned. "Why don't we go home for now? I'm sure he wouldn't try anything this late."

Dewey caught the yawn, then Huey, then Louie again. They agreed to leave, and took off on their skateboard.
The next day at breakfast, Scrooge noticed that his nephews seemed a little tired. "What's up with you boys?" he asked. "Been staying up late again?"

Huey, Dewey, and Louie exchanged a look, then turned back to face their uncle. "No, Unca Scrooge," Huey lied.

"No, Unca Scrooge," Dewey and Louie echoed.

Scrooge looked at them suspiciously but said nothing.
Later that morning, Duckworth drove Scrooge over to the money bin. As Duckworth opened the door for Scrooge, Fenton arrived.

"Hello, Mister McDuck!" he chirped.

Before Scrooge could reply, a loud gunshot rang out.

"Good heavens!" Duckworth exclaimed.

Quickly Fenton tackled Scrooge and they both dove for cover inside the car, along with Duckworth. One bullet narrowly missed Scrooge and plowed into one of the tires. Another buried itself in the windshield.

Finally it stopped and all was silent. Scrooge, Fenton, and Duckworth furtively looked around.

"Wh-what do you think now, Mister McDuck?" Fenton asked shakily. "Do you still believe someone's not after you?"

Scrooge gulped. "It's getting harder to," he replied.
Scrooge paced the floor in his office. "Why would someone be after me?" he said for the hundredth time.

"Maybe you witnessed a crime," Fenton suggested.

"No," Scrooge said slowly. "I'm certain I didn't! I haven't seen anything out of the ordinary . . . except for the attempts on my life!"

Fenton came around and sat on the edge of his desk. "Well, the only other thing I can figure out is that someone's trying to get your money."

"This is terrible!" Scrooge moaned. "What am I going to do?"

"Well," Fenton suggested, "you could hire a bodyguard . . ."
Scrooge turned to face his accountant. "Do you know how expensive bodyguards are?"

Fenton paused, thinking. At last he said, "I could be your bodyguard, Mister McDuck."

Scrooge considered that for all of two seconds. "Done!" he said. "You're hired!"
Scrooge's day finally came to an end after several more near-disasters, including falling ladders and runaway pianos.

"Ah, it's good to be home," he said when he came in the door of McDuck Manor.

"Hi, Unca Scrooge!" the nephews chirped.

"Hello, boys," Scrooge replied, hanging his hat wearily on the rack.

"How was your day?" Huey asked.

"Oh . . . fine, fine," Scrooge said after some thought, not wanting to worry his nephews. He plopped down on the couch and looked at the TV, which was on.

"Hello, this is Webra Walters," the news anchor said. She looked down at her notes, then back at the camera. "This just in: billionaire Flintheart Glomgold is dead. Local police found his car incinerated at the bottom of a cliff. The remains of the car were too charred to tell if anyone was inside at the time. However, according to Mr. Glomgold's maid, Mr. Glomgold was on his way to the airport to close a business deal."

Scrooge and his nephews just stared at the screen, shocked. Finally Scrooge shook his head and said, "Poor Glomgold! We were arch-rivals, but I would never have wanted something like that to happen to him!"

The nephews looked at each other, then back at Scrooge. "Unca Scrooge," Huey began, "do you think maybe the same person who's after you was also after Mr. Glomgold?"

Scrooge gave them a hard look. "Boys, what makes you think someone's after me?"

They shrugged. "Uhh, well, we overheard you and Fenton talking about it," Dewey said.

Scrooge sighed as he considered their question.

"Unca Scrooge, we're really worried about you," Louie piped up. "What if what happened to Mr. Glomgold wasn't an accident and whoever's responsible will try the same thing with you?"

Scrooge's face softened as his nephews expressed their concern. "Don't worry, boys," he tried to reassure them, "nothing will happen to your old Uncle Scrooge!" He prayed that he spoke the truth.
The figure crept through the night, keeping in the shadows. He mustn't be seen—not by anyone!

He approached the house with caution. Good—no guard dogs on duty! He didn't want Antony and Nero to see him and start barking up a storm. That would wake the whole neighborhood and disrupt his whole plan!

He went up to the window and looked in. Ah, perfect! His quarry was standing in the middle of the room, laughing hysterically. As he turned to look at the window, the figure ducked down. Then the man in the room started talking to himself . . . or was he talking to someone else in the room? As he talked, the figure under the window got madder and madder. He had been right! "The thief!" he whispered to himself. He waited until the man had left the room, apparently finished with the conversation, and then left himself. As he crept off the property and disappeared into the shadows, he muttered, "You won't get away with this! I'll see that you won't!"
That night, Huey, Dewey, and Louie once again got up around midnight to go spy on Quacker McFink.

"Let's bring along a tape recorder this time," Dewey suggested. "Then if he says something important, we'll have the proof!"

"Good idea," Louie said.

This time as the three boys arrived at the money bin, Quacker McFink was talking on his cell phone to someone.

"Okay, Dewey, start the recorder," Huey directed.

"What? . . . He is? You're kidding! . . . Hmm, well . . . That certainly was convenient! . . . What? . . . No, I haven't . . . Not yet . . . He keeps escaping my traps! . . . Tomorrow I will . . . He will not escape me again! . . . Yes . . . Yes . . . Tomorrow!" McFink clicked the "Off" button on his phone.

The nephews turned to look at each other. "That sounded suspicious, don't you think?" Louie said.

"Yeah," Huey agreed. "Very!"

"Come on!" Dewey turned to go. "We need to show this to Unca Scrooge!"

The nephews took off on their skateboard.

They took a shortcut through the woods nearby.

"Hey, was that someone looking in the window of that shack?" Louie said suddenly, pointing.

Huey and Dewey turned to look. "I don't see anyone," Huey said.

"Well . . . they disappeared into the shadows now," Louie sighed. "But they were there."

The nephews shrugged, then continued on their way.
The mysterious figure had followed his quarry to the old shack in the woods that usually belonged to the Beagle Boys. Since they were all in jail, this character had taken it over, it appeared.

The man went up to the door and nearly broke it down. Then he pulled out his cell phone and called someone. The figure crept up to the window and listened in.

"Have you got rid of him yet? . . . What?? . . . Look, we've gotta get out of here and hit another town . . . maybe St. Canard . . . It'd better be tomorrow! Meet me here after your shift and we'll plan it!" The man turned off his cell phone and plopping into a chair, greedily looked over some records.

The figure under the window was enraged. The criminal! Who was his partner in crime, and who were they after now? He vowed to find out, and then stop their devious plans before they could do any more harm.

Suddenly he had the feeling that he was being watched. He turned to look, and saw three little ducks wearing masks. One of them was staring at him. Luckily, he was in the shadows, so the little duck couldn't get a good look at him. He dove deeper into the shadows and watched the ducks ride off on their skateboard. Hmm . . . something about them seemed familiar . . . Oh well. He checked his watch and waited for the partner in crime to show up.
When Huey, Dewey, and Louie got home, they found Scrooge was at his desk, looking over some records.

"Should we tell him now, or wait till morning?" Dewey asked.

"This tape could be very important," Huey replied. "I don't think it should wait."

"Okay," Dewey and Louie agreed.

The nephews came down the stairs. "Unca Scrooge . . ." Huey began.

Scrooge looked up abruptly. "Boys!" he exclaimed. "What are you doing up at this time? It's nigh unto two o'clock!"

"Well, ummm, actually, Unca Scrooge . . ." The nephews looked at each other, then back at Scrooge. "We have something here that might be important." Dewey held out the tape recorder.

"What's this?" Scrooge asked suspiciously, taking it.

Dewey pressed the Play button. Quacker McFink's voice filled the room.

"What? . . . He is? You're kidding! . . . Hmm, well . . . That certainly was convenient! . . . What? . . . No, I haven't . . . Not yet . . . He keeps escaping my traps! . . . Tomorrow I will . . . He will not escape me again! . . . Yes . . . Yes . . . Tomorrow!"

Scrooge just stared at the tape recorder, then up at his nephews. "Where did you boys get this?" he demanded.

"Um, well . . ." Huey started.

"Actually, we . . ." Dewey looked a little sheepish.

"Were spying on your night watchman," Louie finished.

"You were what?" Scrooge exclaimed.

"He was talking on his cell phone to someone," Huey added.

Dewey put his hands in his pockets. "We thought it might be important, so . . ."

"We recorded the conversation." Louie indicated the tape recorder.

"Don't you think it sounds a little strange, Unca Scrooge?" Dewey asked.

Scrooge rewound the tape and played it again. He looked thoughtful. Then he nodded slowly. "Yes. Yes, boys, I do!"
After the boys were asleep again, Scrooge stayed up, thinking about the tape. He didn't think the police would do anything, since the boys had gotten the recording through, shall we say, "not quite legal" means, and also, since Quacker hadn't actually mentioned anything about Scrooge or permanently getting rid of him.

"That Quacker McFink is someone to be reckoned with," Scrooge muttered to himself, quietly going out the front door. "I'm not afraid of him! I'll deal with him myself!"

Scrooge opened the door of the Rolls-Royce and climbed inside. As he drove off, the nephews, who weren't really asleep, watched from their window.

"Look! Unca Scrooge is taking the car!" Huey exclaimed.

"He must be going off to see about Quacker McFink!" Dewey gasped.

"Come on! Let's go!" Louie said, rushing to the door.
Scrooge called Fenton on the car phone.

"Hello, Crackshell residence," Fenton said, half-asleep, after the sixth ring.
"Fenton! I think I've figured it out!" Scrooge announced.


"Quacker McFink is responsible for the 'accidents'!" Scrooge went on.

Fenton snapped awake. "He is? Don't worry, Mister McDuck! We'll get him!"

"Fenton, I'm going to follow him when he leaves the money bin," Scrooge said. "His shift ends in about ten minutes."

"Okay, Mister Mc . . . You're going to what?" Fenton was horrified. "Do you know how dangerous that could be? You'd better wait for me! I can pack up my Gizmoduck costume and be at the money bin in five minutes!"

Scrooge, meanwhile, had arrived at the money bin, where McFink was just preparing to leave. "No time, Fenton! He's leaving right now. I'll be fine! I'll keep you posted!" Before Fenton could say any more, Scrooge had hung up.
Scrooge followed McFink down a country road and into the woods behind Duckburg. After what seemed like ages, McFink stopped in front of a shack and got out. Scrooge hid the Rolls-Royce behind some brush. Amazingly, McFink hadn't seemed to notice that he was being followed. McFink went up to the shack and knocked three times. Apparently, that was a signal of some sort, and the door opened. Someone pulled him inside.

As the door shut, Scrooge took a good look at the shack. "Wait a minute! Isn't this where the Beagle Boys live when they're not in jail?" He slowly crept up to the building, making sure to keep hidden in the brush. "It is!" Scrooge said to himself, looking through the window and seeing the infamous portrait of the Beagle family on the wall.

One of the men in the room suddenly came over near the window, and Scrooge backed up into the brush. It was just starting to get light outside, and he couldn't risk having them see him!

Suddenly something hard hit Scrooge on his head, and everything went black.
Quacker McFink laughed maniacally as Scrooge fell backwards into his arms.
The other man came out of the shack, looking annoyed. "Why didn't you just do away with him right then and there?"

Quacker looked around furtively, then shrugged. "I dunno, Bruno," he said finally. "I just have this feeling that we're not alone."

"You're darned right about that," the mysterious figure said to himself from deep in the brush, still shocked at seeing Scrooge McDuck there. So he was the other one they were after!

Bruno glared at Quacker, then sighed. "Well, alright, then. We'll go to our other hideout to finish the job, but only because I know you'll never be at ease here if you're convinced someone's watching our every move." He headed over to his car. Quacker followed, dragging Scrooge. "But," Bruno said, whirling back around, "I know we're alone. There wouldn't be anyone around here."

Quacker dumped Scrooge in the back seat, then climbed in the front with Bruno, and they drove off.

The mysterious figure emerged from the brush and stared after them. "You won't get away with this," he declared.

He went over to Quacker McFink's car and opened the door. "Hmm, not very bright, is he?" he commented, noticing the keys in the ignition. He chuckled, revving up the engine. "But very lucky for me!" He took off down the road, following the tire tracks.

It wasn't long afterwards that Fenton appeared, suitcase with the Gizmoduck outfit in tow. "Here's Mister McDuck's car," he observed. "And this is the Beagle Boys' shack!" he exclaimed in astonishment. He ran up and looked in the window. "Anybody home?" he called. Not getting a response, he turned away from the window, looking worried. "Where could he be?" A horrible thought struck him. "Oh no! What if I'm too late, and . . . and . . ." He couldn't finish the sentence. A determined look came over his face. "No, I can't think that! I've gotta believe that Mister McDuck is alright!" He looked down at the tire tracks in the dirt. "Whoever's in that vehicle must have him! I've gotta find him—fast!" For Fenton knew that even if Scrooge was still alright, he probably wouldn't be for long . . . especially if it was Quacker McFink who had taken him.
Quacker McFink's car came to a stop out near the dock area, by a broken-down warehouse. The mysterious figure climbed out and hid behind a crate, looking around. Ah! There was Bruno's car. They were definitely here.

Hiding behind crates, the figure made his way over to a broken window in the warehouse and looked in. There was Quacker, looking over Scrooge, tied up on the floor and apparently still unconscious. Quacker was muttering to himself.

"I don't know why we can't just use the gun on him or something. Instead we have to go through the extra trouble of making it look like an accident!" Quacker went to grab Scrooge. "I'll just put him in the car and then send the car into the water."

The figure at the window knew he had to do something. Abruptly, he knocked over half a dozen crates stacked up.

Quacker whirled around. "Bruno, was that you?" he said, coming toward the door.

As he stepped into the doorway, the figure at the window pushed a crate over on his head. Quacker crumpled to the ground. The figure grabbed him and pulled him over behind some more crates. Hopefully, the mysterious one thought, he won't wake up before we can get out of here!

Cautiously he crept into the warehouse and over to Scrooge. Using a pocket knife, he cut through the ropes that were holding Scrooge captive. As he was cutting through the last one, Scrooge suddenly woke up.

"Ohhhh . . ." he moaned. He looked around. "What's happening? Am I still alive?" His gaze fell upon his mysterious benefactor and he sprang up in astonishment. "Burst me bagpipes!" he gasped. "You?? But it can't be!" He rubbed his eyes. "I must be hallucinating!"

"I'm no figment of your imagination, McDuck," the other replied.

"But . . . but . . . you're dead!" Scrooge exclaimed.

Flintheart Glomgold started to laugh. "Actually, McDuck, I'm not, but there's no time for explanations!"

Just then Fenton appeared in the doorway. "Mister McDuck!" he said in relief, coming in. "You're alright!"
Suddenly he leaped up into Scrooge's arms. "YIKES!" he yelped.

"Fenton! What is the matter with you?" Scrooge demanded.

"Mr. Glomgold . . . isn't he dead?" Fenton whispered.

"I don't quite understand how or why, but apparently, he's not," Scrooge replied, dropping Fenton unceremoniously on the floor.

Just then footsteps were heard in the other room. Scrooge grabbed the others and they ran behind some crates. "Quick! Someone's coming!"

Bruno came out into the main room. "Quacker! What's up with you?" He looked around. "Oh great. Now where's he gone?" He started to walk over near the crates.

Scrooge threw the nearest one down at him, conking him on the head and sending him sprawling on the floor.

"Bullseye!" Fenton exclaimed. "Good shot, Mister McDuck!"

Glomgold headed toward the door. "Well, come now! We'd best go call the police!"

As the others followed him, Fenton asked nervously, "Uh, are you sure you're . . . uh . . . not . . . a ghost?"

Glomgold rolled his eyes at Scrooge's accountant. "Look here—I wasn't even in that car!" He glanced over at Bruno. "He was my accountant. About a month ago, strange things started happening to me—someone shot at me and cars nearly ran me down—and I suspected him. Then a few days ago, I discovered a bomb in my car and I knew this was getting serious. That's when I decided to fake my death. I set the car to drive over a cliff, and the bomb went off when it reached the bottom. Then I came back to Duckburg to spy on my accountant."

Scrooge looked at his rival in surprise. "Clever plan," he remarked.

Suddenly a voice was heard outside. "Bruno!" it wailed.

"Quacker McFink!" Scrooge gasped.

"Further explanations will have to wait," Glomgold said. He and Fenton disappeared behind some crates, ready to tackle McFink.

Quacker entered the warehouse and stopped short upon seeing Scrooge standing in the doorway. "McDuck!" he exclaimed. "How did you get loose?"

"McFink, I have just one thing to say to you!" Scrooge replied angrily. "You're fired!"

"And you're a dead duck!" Quacker hissed, whipping out a pistol.

Suddenly Fenton, hiding behind the crates, got an uncontrollable urge to sneeze.

"Don't do it!" Glomgold warned, clamping Fenton's beak shut.

Fenton's expression relaxed and Glomgold slowly took his hand away. Then, without warning, Fenton let loose with a monster sneeze that rocked the crates dangerously back and forth.

Quacker whirled around. "What was that?"

Scrooge knocked the gun out of Quacker's hand with his hand. As McFink turned back to glare at Scrooge, Glomgold hit him on the head with his cane and the bad duck collapsed on the floor.

"Sorry about the sneeze, Mr. Glomgold," Fenton said sheepishly.

"Oh, never mind," Glomgold replied. "It enabled us to get the drop on him."

The trio raced out of the warehouse and hid around the corner. Inside, they could hear Bruno waking up, muttering to himself, and then yelling at Quacker, "Come on! Get up! He couldn't have gone far!" He fired a gunshot into the ceiling. "No use hiding, McDuck!" he screamed. "We'll find you!"

"What's the plan now?" Fenton asked, shaking a little.

Before anyone could reply, a police car drove up. Two officers and Huey, Dewey, and Louie jumped out. As the cops went into the warehouse, yelling for Bruno and Quacker to freeze and put their hands in the air, the nephews ran over to Scrooge, who came out from behind the warehouse to meet them.
"Unca Scrooge!" the nephews called. "You're alright!"

"Boys!" Scrooge exclaimed, hugging them. "You can't imagine how happy I am to see you! But, what in the world are you doing here?"

"We saw you leaving the house and figured you were going out to get Quacker McFink," Huey replied.

"So we tried to follow you," Dewey continued.

"We found the car at the Beagle Boys' shack and decided we'd better get the police," Louie finished.

Scrooge smiled warmly. "Thank you, boys. I don't know what we would've done if you hadn't come with the police just now!"

"We?" the nephews repeated. They caught sight of the others.

"Fenton!" Dewey declared.

"And . . . Mr. Glomgold???!" the nephews exclaimed in unison.

The police were leading Bruno and Quacker out of the warehouse in handcuffs. As they passed by the ducks, Bruno saw Glomgold and turned pale.

"Oh no! As if it wasn't bad enough getting our plans foiled and being arrested, now I'm going to be haunted by the ghost of my boss!" he moaned.

"I think we both are," Quacker gulped. "I see him, too!"

Glomgold came up to them, a triumphant gleam in his eyes. "I'll be seeing you boys in court," he said as the police loaded them into the back of the car. He turned away, then turned back, saying mischievously, "I'll be sure to tell them all about the way you tried to kill me in that explosion, Bruno!"

As the car drove off, Bruno and Quacker stared at each other, confused. "'Tried to kill him'?" Quacker repeated. "I thought you said he was dead!!"

"He was!" Bruno shot back. "At least . . . that's what the reporter said. . . ."
As the ducks watched the criminals being carted off, Glomgold turned to Scrooge and remarked wryly, "Well, McDuck, I'd better go call my chauffeur. I'm going to have a lot of explaining to do back in Duckburg about my 'return from the dead.'" He laughed.

"Aye, I imagine you will," Scrooge replied.

As Glomgold started off, Scrooge hesitated, then called, "Glomgold?" His rival turned back. "Thanks."

Glomgold acknowledged Scrooge with a nod, then continued on his way.

Scrooge turned back to his nephews and Fenton. "Come on, boys," he said. "Let's go home!"

"What are you going to do about a new security guard, Mister McDuck?" Fenton asked.

Scrooge sighed. "I don't think I'll be hiring another one for a while." He smiled. "For now, I'm sticking with Gizmoduck, a security guard I know I can trust!"