Finicky, Fun-seeking Feline: Piddles

"So what do you think Grunty is up to with all this crazy stuff?" Kazooie asked, poking Mumbo with her wing. He spun his wand through his fingers absentmindedly as he thought.

"Hard to tell. Witch not very bright sometimes, could be anything."

Kazooie put a wing to her chin and thought. Everything that Gruntilda had been doing and had set up seemed fairly harmless, as it was technically being kept within the confines of her lair. She had made no indication of doing any harm to Spiral Mountain or the inhabitants of the Isle 'O Hags. In fact, there was no indication of any wrongdoing outside of the current area.

Banjo came meandering back through the wall looking a bit worn out.

"What happened to you?" Kazooie asked, looking him over. "You look like Grunty sat on you or something." Banjo shook his head, dismissing the question without answering.

"Here, I found this. Maybe we can use it for something," Banjo said as he removed the Jiggy from his backpack. Kazooie took its place and snatched it back up.

"Where are we supposed to go now? This place is huge, and it all looks relatively the same," Banjo asked, shielding his eyes as he looked to the sky. "When we came in, there was a door with a Jiggy shaped keyhole. Should we be looking for something similar around here?"

"Grunty is consistent at least, so it's possible. I mean, look at her track record; once she lost, she kept at it every time!" Kazooie laughed. Mumbo was keeping quiet, staring down at the ground with a look of concentration on his face. "Hey, bonehead, what's with the staring contest with the floor?" Ignoring the comment, Mumbo spoke.

"Mumbo have idea, but may or may not work. Will need Jiggy and some space." Banjo and Kazooie looked confused.

"What do you need the Jiggy for?"

"Set Jiggy on ground and step back. Mumbo will show you. If it works, new spell we have for use."

Banjo shrugged and removed the Jiggy from his pack before placing it down on the ground. He stepped out of the way, curious what the shaman was up to.

As Mumbo began his chant and dance, an array of multicolored sparkles began to envelope the Jiggy. It rose into the air, spinning ever so slowly. Once it reached a high enough point, it began to glow. Overhead, off in the distance, a few balls of light began to form as if revealing the location of something. Before anyone could comment, a nearby speaker screeched for a moment before a voice took over.

"Hey there you, that's almost cheating! Stop at once or face a beating!"

Mumbo's spell began to falter, and the puzzle piece above started to spin around faster. Mumbo's bag containing the Glowbo let off a large puff of pink smoke, knocking the shaman backwards. At this, the Jiggy was sent flying in a random direction.

"That's what you get for trying shortcuts, do that again and I'll whup your butts!"

Kazooie smacked her head with her wing in disapproval.

"Great, now we don't have the Jiggy and we're lost. Nice going, skull boy." Mumbo got up and dusted himself off, an embarrassed look on his face. Banjo just shook his head.

"It's not his fault, Kazooie. Besides, I think I saw it go in that general direction…" he said as he pointed down what appeared to be another alleyway.

"Well, what are we waiting for? Let's get going before Mumbo loses his staff too," Kazooie remarked, mildly annoyed. Mumbo sighed and lowered his head a bit.

Shaking her head in annoyance, Gruntilda turned a few knobs on her monitor display and the image of Banjo and friends cut out to a blank screen.

"Antics from those stupid fools, they have no respect for rules! Trying to take the easy way out, I'll put them in their place, no doubt!" As Gruntilda ranted on, Piddle stretched out on a nearby metal crate, half listening.

"Purr…You talk a big talk, witch. What are you going to do to carry out your threats? Do you even have a goal in mind?" the purple cat questioned, a bored expression on her face. Turning to look at her partner, Gruntilda opened her mouth to say something. After a few moments, she glanced around as if thinking of a response. Finding nothing to answer with, she simply grunted and folded her arms together.

"Of course I have a plan, furball. When it's time, I'll show them all! Spiral Mountain is all well and good, eventually it will be mine like it should. My old lair is still in repair, with renovations for that bird and bear." Gruntilda walked over to an opening that acted as a glassless window and looked out from her current location. Stationed high up inside a tall skyscraper, a vast expanse of the empty buildings below could be seen. All around, her mindless Gruntbots roamed the streets, occasionally running into each other.

"I have my reasons and my methods, in the end I'll have their heads!" she proclaimed, slamming her boney fist on the window ledge. Piddles hopped up next to her, sharing the view. A few moments of silence followed before Piddles let out a sigh.

"I feel restless. I think I'm going to go have a bit of fun," she said slyly. At this, she leaped off onto the floor and scurried away. Gruntilda watched her leave and yelled after her.

"Have your laughs, but return when you're done, I'm not letting you have all the fun!"

As they were walking, the buildings around the trio seemed to almost be closing in on them. None of them spoke, and there was a silence that seemed almost inappropriate to break. The path they were on seemed to be turning into a long alleyway with the walls getting narrower.

Upon reaching the end of the pathway, there was nothing but a tall wall with a small hole in the bottom. Banjo was the first to break the silence.

"Well now, what do you make of this?" Kazooie stared down at the hole and frowned.

"That's just great, we hit a dead end. What are we supposed to do here?" Mumbo wandered over and poked his staff through the hole.

"Small passage, but not dead end. Hole leads to other side of wall."

"None of us are going to fit through there, Mumbo," Banjo said, tilting his head a little. "Unless…"

"Unless what?" Kazooie asked. Banjo was about to respond when a screen on the side of one of the walls suddenly beeped and turned into static, causing everyone to jump in surprise. A familiar voice came from the screen.

"Is this thing functioning? Hello? Testing… One, two…"

"Mr. Gadget?" Banjo asked, poking the screen a bit. "Is that you?" The static remained, and the voice became slightly distorted.

"Ah, Banjo! So it is working after all. I was worried this wouldn't reach you. You look like you're in a bind there. Use these, they might come in handy for your situation." When he had finished speaking, a panel opened up in the ground and was raised to the surface, revealing another pair of Split Up pads.

Once this had been done, the signal seemed to be cut off completely, as the screen faded out to nothingness just as quickly as it had come on. Banjo smiled as he looked at the new pads before them.

"That sure was convenient. This is that 'unless' I was going to say, Kazooie. I have an idea." He stood on the pad with his face on it and Kazooie hopped out, taking her place on hers. Banjo wandered over to the hole and used pulled his now empty backpack over his head, compressing his size just enough to be able to squeeze through the opening. It was a tight fit, but after much wiggling and twisting, he popped out the other side.

Removing his backpack and placing it back where it belonged, Banjo took a look around. The new area appeared to be surrounded by a circular wall covered by a dome shaped glass ceiling. An open door was stationed at the other side, inviting him to venture further.

The room was decent sized, so Banjo ran across to the door. His footsteps clunked along the metal tiles as he ran. Just as he was about to pass through the door, another voice came from behind him.

"Ah ah ah… Not so fast, bear." A wall of red, pulsating energy appeared in front of the door, blocking his access. Sliding to a stop, he turned around to face whoever had spoken.

Sitting in front of the opening where he had just come from, Piddles eyeballed him carefully. Her tail swished ever so slightly now and then, a playful grin plastered on her face.

"Piddles? What are you doing here?" Banjo asked with a confused look. She stretched and stood on all fours, purring audibly.

"Mreow… I'm just here to have a little fun, bear boy. It's tiresome simply waiting and watching. Come now, humor me. If you don't, I'll just have to play with you like a toy until you break…"

Piddles ran over near Banjo and reared back, the fur down her spine standing on end. She lunged forward with a bite, causing Banjo to leap out of the way. Another bite followed in quick succession, and as Banjo dodged again a third one was on the way. Being unable to move in time, the last bite connected and Banjo yelped.

Trying to retaliate, he swung his pack around, but Piddles backflipped out of the way and ran off. Shaking off the bite, Banjo watched her carefully. Her movements were seemingly random, but fairly slow. He ran over and attempted to attack with his backpack once more, but she pulled a repeat move and backflipped out of harm's way before scurrying off again.

Banjo stood still and waited. If he could get her to come to him, he might have a chance. Piddles charged and again reared back, preparing to strike. Before she could, however, Banjo finally connected a hit and whacked her away with his backpack. Screeching, she rolled away and quickly got up on her feet.

"Hisssss… Didn't hurt." She shook herself off and moved around in a zigzag pattern, making Banjo have trouble keeping up with her movements. She wound up behind him and swiped her claws at his back, causing him to stumble forward. The deed being done, she flipped away and went back to her normal, slower movements. Banjo shook his head and regained his composure.

He took a chance and ran for her, but didn't take a swing. Sure enough, when he got to a certain distance, Piddles defensively flipped away. Chasing after her quickly, he made his move and knocked her out of the air and into the wall. She screeched again and slid to the floor, but quickly jumped up.

'Hisssss… You're ruining my fun." She began to run around the edge of the room, slowly at first, but picked up speed after a few moments. After picking up enough speed, Piddles began to slowly move onto and up the wall, running along it as easily as she would the floor. Banjo tried to keep an eye on her, but having her circle around him was making him dizzy.

Taking advantage of this, Piddles leaped off the wall at a great speed and swiped at Banjo before bouncing back onto the wall and continuing her run. Banjo was knocked onto the ground by the impact, and struggled to get to his feet. Piddles was unrelenting, however, and jumped after him once more. He rolled out of the way and she landed on the ground, sliding into the wall on the other side.

As she collided with it, she was momentarily stunned. Noticing this, Banjo quickly made his way over and smacked her good, right into the wall at close range. Screeching again, Piddles rolled to the center of the room and struggled to her feet.

"Hisssss… Toys aren't supposed to fight back. You don't know how to play." She ruffled her fur up and made a huff noise. "I'll be back for you later. I'll have my play time again, bear boy." Piddles ran towards the door as the wall of energy faded away. Behind Banjo, the wall that he had entered from crumbled and busted apart, making another doorway.

Breathing a deep sigh, he made his way back to the entrance. He may have been a bit banged up, but at least now they had a way to venture forward.

Crawling back into the tower lair, Piddles laid on the floor with a sigh.

"What's wrong cat, you look beaten, did you get floored by that furry cretin?"

"Oh, shut up you hag," Piddles groaned.

"That's what you get for being in a hurry, next time think before you scurry!"

A/N: Yeah, I know this one took a while to put up. Life got to me and my writer's block wouldn't go away. I apologize to the few, if any, viewers I had and/or still have. To compensate for waiting time, I tried to make this chapter longer. I can't guarantee I'll be able to keep going with this story, my writer's block has been very aggressive lately... Also I wrote this while I was tired, so pardon if there are any mistakes.

Either way, I hope this one is good enough.