In a subterranean compound almost a full foot underground, a hush fell over the milling crowd as the speaker took her position at the podium.
"My comrades!" she proclaimed. "Tell me! Who are we?"
"TINKERS!" they proclaimed in ragged unison.
As the shout reverberated through the cavern, a banner fell behind their leader. Emblazoned on the green canvas was the image of a shit-encrusted fist clutching a bloody tomahawk. With that and their accolades, Tinkerbelle took control of the meeting in full.
"For too long, we have slaved under the yoke of tyranny!" she proclaimed, making impassioned sweeps of her arm as she proselytized to her adoring followers. "The nobility looks down upon us as inferior to them, and so they take advantage of us grievously. Filling our days and nights with lulling litanies of subservience and duty, designed to prevent us from recognizing our own inborn talents! They ask us to clean up their slop, and do so with a contented smile, all the while mocking and deriding us, not just to our backs, but openly in all the corners of Pixie Hollow! We, the proletariat, ask only for the equality and respect granted to all members of our race! But do they recognize our worth?"
"NO!" they bellowed.
"NO!" Tink slammed a fist down on her mushroom soapbox. "Instead they demean us with their sweet words, telling us to 'be ourselves', 'find what makes us special', and 'listen to our hearts'! What do they take us for, some kind of retarded infants?"
"THAT WAS A RHETORICAL QUESTION, YOU FUCKING MORONS!"
This last left the mob fidgeting and buzzing in consternation as they sought someone to explain when and how they should speak. With an effort, their leader mastered her understandable and perfectly natural frustration. Those at the front of the stadium, however, could see a vicious tic causing her left eyelid to blink erratically.
"If we continue to be spoon-fed these syrupy sweet catch-phrases, we are no better than a mob of dirty flies attracted to honey! A bunch of broken-down worker ants, mindlessly obeying the orders of a queen who sends us out to do her dirty work. Has Queen Clarion ever once stepped down into OUR fields to help us move a potty patty into the fertilizer fallows?"
Arms upraised, Tinkerbelle's blazing blue eyes darted madly back and forth.
At the back of the hall, someone cleared their throat. "Well, er, I personally never saw, but one of my cousins said she once witnessed the Queen atop a mound of dung…"
"Was that your cousin Dandy Ruff?"
"I heard the same story…"
"He hasn't even told a story…!"
"I was there, that wasn't the queen, it was a golden moth."
"Oh, those are very rare!"
"I can spin straw into gold, you know."
"Aw, you are so full of shi…"
The sound system they had hooked up sent out several shrill pops and snaps, and the lights flickered badly as Tinkerbelle howled like a mad thing. This served to remind them why they were here again, and all good-hearted clamor died down. The aerial agitator's head snapped around the room, daring anyone with the guts to try and interrupt her speech again. When no one did, she continued in a voice that trembled slightly in time to her twitching fingers.
"If we are going to take our rightful place as beings of magic, hope and dreams, then we are going to have to fight for our rights! The Tinkers must rise up, throw off the yoke of our oppressors, and smash the stagnant society that has kept us mired in filth. We will abolish the corrupt and decadent system of rule that serves only to keep itself feted and fat off the fruits of our labors! We, the Tinkers, the workers, will rise up in glorious revolution, and bring about a more perfect state in which equality, fraternity, and liberty will prevail!"
The spritely speaker thrust her fist into the air. "Liberty!"
"LIBERTY!" the Tinkers echoed back.
"EAGLE TOR MARINE organism, wait, what… did you… I'm not sure… wasn't really listening… got a dictionary, anybody… should we start over…?"
Clank trundled up onstage at this point. Bell's fingers were digging into the luminescent fungus podium like knives, and her vision was turning red. He carefully pried her digits off the spongy soapbox, then picked her up bodily and carried the quivering sprite to stage left, where Bobble waited with a bag of ice and a biting stick indented with teeth marks for his leader's more insane frothing rages.
However, even when limned with a scarlet haze, Tinkerbelle's shrewd gaze picked out a figure peeling away from the rear of the congregation and absconding out the door.
When her bespectacled assistant offered the ice pack, she ignored it and made a curt gesture. "You two. Follow me."
Reflected in the tiny puddle, Queen Clarion's image looked very regal and aloof. "And how many would you say there were tonight?"
"Virtually all of them," Fairy Mary whispered, her jowls quivering with excitement at being able to address the royal person directly. The roly-poly overseer had never so much as dreamed of being granted such a prestigious role as Internal Affairs Liaison Officer, and it was still something of a dream come true. "They went along with whatever she said. What will we do, your Majesty?"
Clarion's eyes rolled languidly to one side. "The day I concern myself with the ramblings of a disturbed Tinker is the day I go to work in the shite fields myself. There seems no need for us to act at this time."
"But Highness," Mary swallowed a lump of fear at contradicting her liege lady, "there is more going on than just meetings. Tinkerbelle is having them working on designs that she keeps secret. I haven't been able to find out what they're building yet, but it all seems highly explosive to me. Perhaps a demonstration of your power and munificence would serve to placate some of the more reasonable members of my staff."
A weary sigh came then. "Well, if I must. We will arrange a small holiday for the workers, and send a treat to them, then. Nothing fancy, just a sweet corn mash cake, those are readily available from the island's Clumsy population. That should demonstrate their worth to us, and put a halt to all this talk of change and disturbance."
Fairy Mary was starting to sweat copiously from the dual risks she was courting at this time. "Forgive me, great Queen, but… I don't believe cake will be enough to…"
Just then a green-shoed foot suddenly drove into the water, drenching Mary and dispelling the image of the ruler of Pixie Hollow.
Squealing and spluttering, the dutiful work-boss fell back on her ample rump. Looking up, her heart quailed in fear, as she found herself looking into the accusing stare of Tinkerbelle.
"How much did they pay you…" the blazing-eyed imp hissed, "… to betray your own people, traitor?"
"T-Tinkerbelle, you have it all wrong!" Mary gasped, desperately searching for anything to save herself. She knew full well what happened to those branded as traitors. "I was only… only deceiving the Queen! Yes, that's right! I let her believe that I was spying on you, when actually I was feeding them false information!"
"And you know all about feeding, don't you, you bloated toad!"
Scrabbling backwards on all fours, the chubby cherub suddenly felt herself hoisted up into the air. A glance upwards brought a chunky Frankenstein's monster face into view, one named Clank. The brute stared down at her with wide, unblinking eyes. There was only the barest intelligence in that gaze, and not even a drop of sympathy. Mary's voice died out between pleading whispers.
Bell gave a curt nod of her head. "Take her to the Juicer," she said.
Once it had been a mere Tinker contraption, used to squeeze the juices out of fruit. But now that the iron hand of Tinkerbelle held sway over their efforts, it had been converted into a more sinister purpose. Fairy Mary was hanging over the vat, tied hand and foot. From either side, two huge wooden discs were slowly pressing her between their flat surfaces, the grooved screws that attached to them turning in time to the bellows that were being worked by Clank. Standing observing this procedure, Bobble wore a seriously ill expression, while his mistress' face held not even the slightest trace of doubt.
The pressure was building, pain and discomfort intensifying with every moment, and Mary was clearly not handling it well.
"Tinkerbelle, please forgive me! I was confused, but I know where my true place is now! I'll g-yAAAAAAAAAHHHH!"
The twin slabs moved closer to one another, crushing the victim. Unable to move, her wings buzzed frantically, and a hideous strangling noise came from her throat.
Tinkerbelle stood watching silently, a queer glint in her eyes.
Mary managed to draw another breath. "I'll tell you everything I know! Please stop! Whatever you want, I'll do it! Just tell me who to kill, you can count on me!"
"Only if I wanted a hot fudge sundae dead, you fat disgrace to faeries everywhere." And the revolutionary chuckled at her witticism.
Bobble was fidgeting anxiously. "Eh… Miss Bell…"
Two crazy sapphires snapped over to glare at him. He swallowed and quickly amended his mistake. "I mean, Tinkerbelle. Are ye not goin' ta… ask her any questions?"
She watched him out of eyes bright with madness.
"No, I suppose not."
The scrawny sprite's teeth were chattering, and not just from what was being done in this room. He had seen enough of that in the past few months. Instead, this dread arose from the horrific suspicion that this time, she really might take it all the way.
The two colleagues stared at one another, while the screams went on. Clank blithely continued to heave up and down on the bellows, long immured to the sounds of those being put to the screws.
Bobble tried to speak once again, only to find that his mouth had gone dry. The lovely leprechaun continued to regard him, face glowing with a malicious glee. She looked savage and splendid all at the same time, radiating something other than pixie magic.
The tubby traitor was unable to draw in enough air anymore, and was reduced to gurgling horribly. Bobble shut his eyes resolutely. In his head, he was performing the calculations. Given the pressures involved, and taking into account the amount of insulating body fat, the point of no return would be ten seconds away. If it's not stopped by then…
Tinkerbelle watched his watery spectacles intensely.
9 seconds, he thought.
I have to…
Miscalculated, you did.
A torrent of blood and other fluids burst forth then. The crimson spray hit both Tinkerbelle and Bobble on the side of their faces turned towards that sickening sight. Neither of them moved, though the male fairy went an intense shade of pale. Seeing this, she took a step closer to him. The gangly gnome whimpered at her approach, but made no attempt to move. Reaching up, his dominating commander extended two fingers out until they made contact with his eponymous eyewear. At her touch, the water globes popped, and at that sound, Bobble's eyes sprang open.
Blue met blue, and she held him in her gaze like a snake hypnotizing a mouse. The nubile nymph's features were covered in blood. She looked gruesome. But gorgeous.
Her gore-stained lips parted.
"You've smelled worse than that, right, Bobble?"
Entranced by the sight of her, he could only nod.
And Tinkerbelle gave a satisfied smirk.
"We're going to have to accelerate our plans. The revolution begins at dawn. Clank, go out and spread the word."
The brute saluted smartly and strode from the abattoir, leaving his two comrades still staring into each others' eyes.
Tink cocked her head to one side, studying Bobble's slack mesmerized features. Then an impish grin split her face.
"Y'know something, Phineas? You've got really nice eyes."
Then she grabbed him by the hair, yanked the aghast engineer down, and planted a passionate and hungry kiss on his lips.
When her spy was abruptly cut off, Queen Clarion did not think much of the disturbance. She decided to sleep on it, valuing her rest over any lingering curiosity. Come the morning, though, the monarch of the four seasons remembered the truncated conversation whilst being served her 12-course breakfast, and dispatched a small squadron of the royal guard to ascertain her informant's condition. While she may be expendable, Fairy Mary had that marvelous combination of subservience and ambition that made for very dependable underlings, and such a thing was not to be lightly discarded.
The troop of soldiers reached the mud pit which housed the Tinker community well after dawn. Descending cautiously, they approached the nearest structure of twigs and leaves.
At a shout from one of his scouts, the captain in charge turned and looked up at the rim of the hollow.
To find himself facing a ring of tanks.
Without warning, the prodigious contraptions opened fire.
In a pinch, guano from bird and other animal droppings can be used to make gunpowder. Any fan of the old 'Transformers' cartoon can tell you that. Lacking access to any such medium, Tinkerbelle had simply cobbled together the formula from her readings into Clumsy history. With this under her belt, the resolved reformer swiftly graduated to firearms and explosives. After all, as we all know she was a very special fairy, with incredible inner talents. These gifts were put to good use in galvanizing her people to construct her engines of war.
Tanks were just the beginning. After the scouting party was wiped out, birds of all kinds laden with bombs swept towards the palace. Members of the nobility more vigilant than their Queen noticed this coming, and immediately deployed the royal army. Ascending into the air with their swords and shields, these stalwart defenders of the current order were met with a flotilla of anti-aircraft shells fired by the gun-Howitzers that the Tinkers had spent so many weeks laboring over. Armed with methane gas-powered flamethrowers, the ground forces of the Tinker Revolution made swift work of any enemy unfortunate enough to survive the fall back to earth.
The aerial bombardment was the first wave. Once the castle's defenses were softened up, the ground forces moved in. Tanks whose furnaces were fueled by dried dung swept across the landscape, laying waste to any opposition. Observing this conflict, certain specific fairies hand-picked by Tinkerbelle, such as Silvermist of the Water Fairies and Fawn of the Animal Faeries, managed to convince their corresponding clans not to be drawn into the war, instead serving to hold back and thereby minimize their own losses. When no aid from the rest of Pixie Hollow was forthcoming, the royal family pulled back all their personal forces to the palace. A siege then began that lasted three whole days. Weapons never before seen in Neverland were brought to play by the dynamic and technologically advanced Tinkers. Of course, the royals had great fairy magic on their side. But as any devout reader of fantasy can tell you, when good sweet beautiful sorcery squares off against cold heartless steel technology, magic gets its ass handed to it every time. It's more tragic that way.
So. In the end, the palace was breached. A last-ditch attempt to spirit the Queen to safety failed, and Clarion was captured along with the rest of her noble seasonal cohorts.
On the morning of the fourth day, the leader of the revolution took her place on the throne of Pixie Hollow.
A pair of Tinkers dressed in green fatigues shoved their former ruler roughly down the hall of what had once been her throne room. Stumbling, Clarion pitched forward. There came a disgusted laugh, and when she looked up, it was to see the blonde firebrand responsible for this disaster glaring down from atop her golden seat, one leg negligently thrown up over the arm of the chair.
Undaunted, former-Queen Clarion tried to put on a pleasant face.
"I'm so very pleased to see you again, Tinker Bell!"
A growl from the assembled throngs of Tinkers made the glamorous golden girl atop the throne wave her hand for silence. Standing, the guerrilla leader gazed scornfully down on her humbled adversary.
"I have cast off my slave name!" the nymph declared. "No longer shall Tinkers be automatically burdened with a surname betokening shame and degradation! Henceforth, I shall be known as Tinkerbelle!"
"TINKERBELLE!" her followers roared.
"What's the difference?" someone in back spoke up, only to be quickly hushed and smacked down for fear of reprisal. Tink had already noted the speaker, and resolved to punish them accordingly later. Before this, there were other debts to pay. In the time after the clamor died down, though, Clarion had found her voice again.
"Certainly, Tinkerbelle. I would be ever so happy to address you as such. I see that you took my advice and learned to appreciate what being a Tinker can offer you." An amused snort from the imp in question caused her cohorts to snicker most disturbingly, but the deposed despot pressed on regardless. "And I would be most glad to listen to any concerns you all might have in regards to your place in Nature. Together I am positive we can work out a solution that will lead to magnificent changes in my rule which will be of benefit to all. You've proven yourselves to be most industrious and remarkable subjects, ones whose talents will be put to good use in ways not involving shite, and…"
"NEVER SAY THAT WORD TO ME, YOU INBRED LEECH!" Tinkerbelle rose into the air, wings awhirl, a look of furious hatred causing her face to become red and quite unseemly, in Clarion's opinion.
"Please forgive my thoughtlessness, Tinkerbelle. I did not mean to bring up old wounds from the past. It is the future we all must look forward to now! And I am sure that if you would only look deep into your heart, you will find…"
A fist whose fragrance was still faintly of feces crashed into Clarion's mouth. When she fell backwards, Tinkerbelle's foot then collided solidly with her ass, and after this, she only lay there, stunned.
The lack of a title caused the intended recipient to look around herself, apparently in search of another fairy bearing the same name as their monarch. When no other person stood out, it finally dawned upon her that it was she to whom Tinkerbelle had been speaking. The idea left her absolutely speechless.
The same could not be said for her vanquisher.
Smiling sweetly, the emerald-clad agitator settled back down before her tumbled sovereign. "Oh, Clarion. Clarion, Clarion, Clarion. Even at the end, you just can't help spouting off all that thoughtless nonsense that has served you so well before. And ultimately, you were right. When I really looked deep inside, I did find what made me special. I had lots of ideas, after all. It's just none of them were very well suited for the tasks you had me running around doing. But as you can see, they work quite well when applied to martial purposes. But there is one in particular I designed especially for you. If you'll come over to the window, I think you'll have no trouble seeing it down in the courtyard."
At a gesture from their supreme leader, two husky Tinkers hoisted the gobsmacked royal in between them and followed Tinkerbelle over to the window. There she pointed down, and Clarion's vacant eyes took in the sight of a strange contraption surrounded by a small buzzing mob. The ministers of Spring, Autumn, Winter and Summer were already down there, penned up along with some of her more ardent regal kin. But none of that served to explain what this scene might portend, and that confusion was evident in the look she turned back on the smiling viridian wisp before her.
"It's my pride and joy, Clarion. And you're going to be the first person I test it on."
The pixie's voice when she spoke next held a note of vicious humor.
"I call it the 'guillotine'."
Clearly the word held no meaning for the dumbfounded prisoner at her feet. But when the two attendants picked her up again and flew the tumbled tyrant right out the window, she seemed to have gathered the gist of it. Pixie Hollow's overthrown overlord began to bite and scratch at her captors. But they gave no sign of being put off by their assigned task, and arriving at the heavy-bladed instrument of execution, strapped her to the rolling plank and without fanfare proceeded to summarily behead Queen Clarion.
Tinkerbelle observed all this from the palace window. She watched her avowed enemy's head roll around in the filth. Instead of continuing to enjoy the proceeding spectacle involving the rest of the faerie nobility, the new ruler of Pixie Hollow set about rewarding those who had helped along her ambitions and punishing the ones she felt were most responsible for her previous life being a terrible mess.
This took several hours, and they had to clean off the guillotine blade quite a few times. To prevent the flies from getting too obnoxious.
Tinkerbelle wiped a bead of sweat off her brow and stifled a yawn, leaning back on her throne. "That will be all for today, Captain Clank."
Her burly bodyguard stepped forth and directed a menacing look at the crowd of supplicants. " 'Er Smartness says there'll be no more petitions for today. All's you lot need to clear the throne room now." Using his tremendous bulk and exceedingly threatening visage, the enforcer then drove the mob out the doors and shut them behind him, taking up his place before the portals to prevent anyone from disturbing his mistress.
Only one person remained in attendance upon the First Citizen, as she was now known. Clad only in a skimpy leaf loincloth that would have been too embarrassing even for Adam and Eve, Bobble continued to wave a large palm-frond fan over his exalted leader's head. His bare chest gleamed with oil, the sinewy frame glistening with every movement he made, which did not go unnoticed by his observant comrade.
"Well, Tinkerbelle," he began. "Ah hope yer satisfied with all ye've accomplished these past few weeks."
"It has been quite an adventure, hasn't it, lover?" In spite of wearing water contact lenses now, Bobble still failed to notice the predatory look that had come into his mistress' eyes as she watched him continue to manfully perform his duties. Still dressed only in her tight-fitting green tunic, she eyed him appraisingly.
"Hoh, yes indeed. The o'ter Faerie clans seem quite pleased with how ye be running things. Ah've never known Pixie Hollow to function wi' such spunk and fortitude before! Now that all the executions be a thing of the past, folks're more willin' to flutter about once more. The fugitive Vidia still be at large, but ah would'na be lettin' that trouble ye none. All in all, ye be doin' a splendid job."
"I'm glad to hear you think so, Bobble." Her voice had a rumbling thrum to its timbre. He continued on, blithely unaware of anything not rated G in their conversation.
"Be there anytin' else ye'll be wantin' from me at this time, ma'am? Cuz ah thought ah'd go see to the dismantlin' of the armament afore the light starts to…"
At this point a small green flag of sorts sailed through the air and flopped over his chestnut locks. Pulling it off, Bobble stared at the garment perplexedly for a moment. He raised his head, about to question where it might have come from, to be confronted by the sight of a naked Tinkerbelle draped seductively over the queen's throne, her salacious heaving bosom dripping with sweat.
An instant later, the two of them pounced on each other.
Outside the room, Clank was now speaking affably to a tiny group composed of Silvermist, Fawn, and Rosetta.
"Oh, to be sure," he informed them. "There's always something that needs being mended or improved in the world. That's where a Tinker's true talents lie. We notice problems, and then we fix 'em right up, we do."
The party of pretty pixies giggled, and he was just about to go into greater detail, when a shout from behind his back broke in.
"Ye-ES, sweet SYLvan SWAMPS! Ride me, you mighty stallion! Stick your great clapper up inside that Bell and RING IT for all it's worth!"
Clank's audience peered curiously over his broad shoulder.
"What are they doing in there?" Silvermist wondered aloud.
Fawn, whose cheeks were turning red, looked at her friend and quickly supplied, "Animal husbandry."
"Ohhh." The explanation didn't do much to alleviate her curiosity, but the affable fairy felt certain a quick visit to her babbling brook would clear up any lingering confusion. As she was deciding upon this, a pair of voices now rose in raucous uproar.
"Blessed Demeter, yer like a machine, Bell! A wonderful, magical, smoothly running instrument of torrid passionate rapturous eroticism!"
"God, I LOVE IT when you talk all wordy and technical like that, you sleek unmatched falcon of a fairy! Say something more!"
"Yer skin glows like a burnished walnut shell, n' ye taste divine!
"Go for it, Tinker! Take your giant shovel and go digging around in that hole back there! It's the nastiest shite you'll ever come across in your life, you dirty little SHIT FAIRY!"
"Oh mercy, say it aGAIN!"
"Excuse me," Rosetta fluttered up, "I think I'd better leave before I'm no longer fit to appear in these flicks."
"Good idea," Fawn agreed, and catching Silvermist by the hand, the pixie trio sped away from that voluble and vocal love-making.
And so it passed that Tinkerbelle found a way to let her inner talents blossom for all to see, thereby securing her place in Faerie history. Now free to go wherever she pleased, eventually she would come across a newborn baby, and choose to bear it back to Neverland, where under her care, it would grow to be one of the single most vicious, bloodthirsty, thoughtless, egomaniacal, contemptible, empty-headed, repulsive, selfish, dangerous, and mean little shits to ever stick a knife in somebody's ribs.
Maybe if she'd actually cleaned his diapers when he was little?
At this suggestion, Tinkerbelle looks up and scowls.
"Eat shite and DIE, you walking shit factory!"
But that is a story for another day.