Episode 16: Take Me Up to the Ballgame
For the grand opening of FrancisWorld, a ballgame had been planned. King Plough and his grandson Eileve were practicing, though Plough didn’t feel very confident. Eileve told Plough that even if Plough’s abilities were lacking, his presence would inspire Eileve to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. Eileve demonstrated his speed by running around the castle and back before Plough noticed his absence. This gave Plough an idea.
At Linens Und Thïngs, Baron Üterrüs and Magic Jones discussed the sorry state of business, then turned their attention to the upcoming ballgame. Üterrüs’ strategy involved knocking the opponents’ heads off with their bats, but Jones suggested that they instead fill the bats with bird cork. (“It’s cheating, but not necessarily killing them.”) The Baron liked the idea of cheating, then suggested that they make the match more interesting by wagering their magic staffs against Plough’s enchanted sword.
JONES: “Very well, my staff against yours!”
ÜTERRÜS: “We’re on the same team! Haven’t you been paying any attention?”
Keblaar of the Riverdale elves was stringing the silveril cables across the mountain-sized Francis of the Rock People. They introduced themselves, and Keblaar explained that he’d been appointed the Royal Secretary. Francis listened politely, but explained that he couldn’t really take an interest because, as a mountain, mortal concerns were beneath him.
Tarquin the Gangly came to ask Chambliss what was going on with all the cables being strung across Mount Francis. She explained that she was planning on running cable cars up FrancisWorld (or, as she called it, “ChamblissTuckerLand”), and asked Tarquin to hollow out several trees to make the cable cars, making sure to carve grates in the floors as a drain for spilled beverages. Tarquin agreed to all her ideas.
King Plough and Baron Üterrüs were in the Slop Bucket, talking smack before the big game. Plough suggested that the Baron’s team should be called “The Pussies,” and Üterrüs agreed that his team was no match for Plough’s. Plough was disappointed, explaining that Üterrüs was taking all the fun out of smack-talk by not fighting back. Üterrüs proposed his wager to Plough, and the King accepted. The Baron asked Plough what his team’s name was, and Eileve dubbed them “The Ass-Kickers.”
Magic Jones and Eileve talked about the upcoming game. Eileve reassured the wizard that the game was all in friendly competition, and that he still looked up to Jones. As they conversed, Jones noticed that Eileve smelled really nice. Eileve explained that that was his own natural scent, resulting from his being part-cheetah. They discussed the idea of bottling Eileve’s scent and selling it at Linens Und Thïngs under the brand name “Brute.”
Tarquin and Keblaar had a conversation in Elvish (occasionally slipping back into English). During one of the English moments, Tarquin explained that he had designed the cable car’s grate so that not only would drinks fall through, but so would the human passengers.
Chambliss was putting the finishing touches in ChamblissTuckerLand, and Francis asked her why she had become so ruthless lately. She explained that she was modeling herself on her idol, Oprah Winfrey. Suddenly, Chambliss started thinking about Oprah and realized that she wasn’t such a great role model after all. Chambliss apologized and agreed to try being nicer. Now that she’d agreed to change her ways, Francis allowed Chambliss to climb him so she could see the elf army in the distance, carving trees into weapons (but planting new trees for every one they cut down).
Keblaar visited Linens Und Thïngs and found Baron Üterrüs practicing for the ballgame. The Baron complained that his latest shipment of elfin silks had not arrived, and that it was unlike the elves to be late. Keblaar explained that he had been busy with all his latest responsibilities: being Royal Secretary, helping prepare FrancisWorld, and preparing the elfin invasion. This last item piqued Üterrüs’ interest, and he offered his services to the elves.
Magic Jones was coaching King Plough for the ballgame; even though they were on different teams, Jones was still Plough’s advisor and companion. Plough started reminiscing about his Uncle Stu and his lifetime companion Bruce.
Tarquin attempted to string up the cable cars to ChamblissTuckerLand, but the car kept falling off the cable. Tarquin finally noticed that the mountain was his old friend Francis, and he reassured Francis that he hadn’t forgotten the revolution, and that the elf army was coming to help. Francis reminded Tarquin that the revolution wasn’t about killing everybody, but making life better. Francis was worried about the elf army, but Tarquin’s incompetence in building the cable car reassured him that the elves were no threat.
Chambliss visited the Slop Bucket and complained that her plans for ChamblissTuckerLand were not going as well as she’d hoped. Eileve noticed that she was carrying a giant rabbit-head mask, and suggested that she wear the mask to greet people. He assured her that she could get more customers by being a friendly cartoon rabbit than by demanding money from them.
Tarquin’s sabotaged cable-car having failed (big surprise there), everybody was gathered atop Mount Francis for the ballgame. It was the bottom of the somethingth inning, and the Asskickers were down 2 to 0. Plough instructed Eileve to use the secret strategy they had devised earlier. By running around the world at super-speed, Eileve turned back time to the start of the game. As the game started over, Baron Üterrüs suggested that they make it a one-pitch, all-or-nothing game. As Üterrüs prepared to throw his lardball, Plough stabbed Eileve in the side, just to make the game more dramatic. As the Baron hurled his pitch, the scene went into slow-motion. Eileve hit the ball and staggered around the bases, reaching home plate just as he was tagged. Francis, being the umpire (as well as the playing field), was asked to make the call. However, before he could rule, something unforeseen occurred. Eileve’s time-reversal had undone the enchantment that turned Francis into a mountain, and he shrank back to his original size with everybody still on top of him.
TO BE CONTINUED…