XENA’S STORY PART ONE: XENA DECIDES TO BE AN AUTHOR
Lucy: Hi Xena. Whatcha doing? You look like you’re up to something.
Xena: I’m thinking. It’s Dr. Seuss Day. He wrote fun stories and poems. You know Angel Lexi was an author, too. She wrote a whole book about her life and adventures. I’m thinking maybe I could write a little story.
Lucy: You’ll never know unless you try. Like Dr. Seuss said, “Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try!” So, how are you going to do it?
Xena: I’m thinking maybe I’ll dogtate it into one of those dogtation machines. Then, if there’s a mistake, I can blame the machine.
Lucy: Sounds like a plan. Have you come up with a story?
Xena: Yep. Here goes: My name is Xena Schnauzer Warrior Princess. Xena for short. Xe for shorter. I have two Siamese cat friends. Their names are Shoko and Tyebe. They live in a different country named Canada. Shoko is smart, and Tyebe is fun. They have their own blog. The end.
Lucy: Your dogtator seems to be working just fine. But there’s a couple of little things maybe that need changed.
Xena: Are you saying you don’t like my story, that my story stinks? Or don’t you like the Canadian cats?
Lucy: I love the Canadian cats, and your story doesn’t stink. Every good writer has someone called an editor, and since you’re such a good writer *toes crossed* you deserve a good editor like me. Now, first of all, all short stories are at least a few pages long. It would be great if you told more about everyone in the story and different things that you all do or like to do. And there is usually a plot.
Xena: But this is about cats, not plot hounds.
Lucy: Uh, ok, never mind that. The other thing is that you must not use your friends’ real names. You need to make up names, like Mary or Ann or Susan or Tammy or…
CHAPTER 1: A FRIENDSHIP BEGINS
Xe was a beautiful miniature schnauzer with salt and pepper coloring. She had a very happy life with her dog sister Lu and her peeps, Mom and Dad. Xe went on a trip on a boat. It was a big boat, and it sailed all the way to the land of Siam. There was lots of dancing and food on the big boat, so Xe had many days and nights of fun. All the boy dogs wanted to dance with Xe because she was a very talented dancer, and pretty, too. At night, she always went back to her cabin alone and slept by herself. She missed cuddling up to Mom and Dad in the big bed back home, but then she remembered she wasn’t allowed to do that all night now, anyway. But that’s a story for another day.
After being at sea for several weeks and eating her fill of the fishies of the sea and dancing until she thought maybe her legs would fall off, Xe saw land. Before sunset that day, the big boat docked at that wonderful land called Siam. Everyone on the boat ran off and started to explore. While walking between shops, Xe met two Siamese cats. The older one was named Sho and she was very wise. The young one was named Tye and she was full of energy and very mischievous.
“Where are you from,” asked Tye, “and what is your name? I’m Tye.”
“I’m Xe, and I’m from the wonderful land of USA.”
“That’s Sho over there. She’s my big sister. Do you want to be our friend? Sho doesn’t like to play very much. Do you? What do you like to play?” Tye was full of questions, and kept jumping at the little schnauzer, who had never had a cat friend before.
When Tye stopped to catch her breath, Xe replied, “I love to play, especially chasing balls. I like to run with a friend, too, but I don’t like to be jumped at.”
“Look out little schnauzer named Xe!” exclaimed Sho. “You almost got trampled by the local traffic.”
So Xe and Tye went to the edge of the jungle where there wasn’t so much traffic and found some mangoes to play with that had not been stepped on by an elephant. Tye jumped at the fruit and batted them around with her front paws, while Xe ran and brought back the mangoes that Tye had hit further away. Sho sat and cleaned her lovely paws while keeping a watchful eye on the young ones. When one of the mangoes rolled into a nearby creek, Xe started after it.
“Stop!” meowed Sho in her loudest Siamese voice. “Little schnauzers have to be very careful about going near water where mean old crocodiles live. They have a reputation for wanting to eat all the schnauzers in the land.”
Just as Xe heard Sho yell for her to come back quickly, she saw Mort the Siamese crocodile, who was camouflaged in the muddy water. That was enough to scare even a very brave little schnauzer warrior princess like Xe. She quickly turned and ran back to Sho and Tye as fast as she could. Xe collapsed in front of them, quivering with fear or maybe with adrenaline. Yep, it was probably with adrenaline. Realizing this magical land was actually full of danger, Xe was grateful for the Siamese cats’ offer for her to go home with them to spend the night in a safe place with comfy mats on the floor to sleep on. In Siam, everyone named their huts, and Sho, being the oldest, had named their hut Canada.
The next few days were spent with the three of them together, learning more about each other and becoming fast friends. Xe sat at Sho’s feet and listened to her talk about her life in Siam, soaking up her words of wisdom. Once Sho quoted Dr. Seuss, saying, “Only you can control your future.”
Sho taught Xe the song, “I am Siamese if you please, I am Siamese if you don’t please.” That song would run through the little schnauzer’s head for years to come, reminding her always of her good friends and the wonderful time they had together in Siam.
Sho would nap often, and during those times, Xe and Tye would play-wrestle and chase each other around the hut, being careful to stay out of the Siam elephant traffic and away from any creeks or pools of water. Every evening the three of them took walks in the lane that bordered the jungle, being careful not just of rampaging elephants and schnauzer-eating crocodiles, but also of wild boars, leopards and cobra snakes.
Sometimes they brought mice that Tye and Xe had caught during the day to throw at the leopards if they came too near. The plan was that the mouse would bounce off the leopard and then start running, causing the big, wild cat to chase after them. Out of Sho’s hearing, they whispered about trying to stuff a wiggling mouse down a cobra’s throat if they got the chance, but that chance never happened. Sometimes it misted a light rain during their evening strolls, and even Sho joined the youngsters in a joyful rain dance that included a lot of hopping and turning and yipping and chirping. After these happy dances, the three of them would run back to their Hut Canada and wrap up in fluffy towels, while they sipped cups of warm, sweet tea before settling into their bed mats for the night. Always, while drifting off to sleep, young Tye would whisper something a wise “Dr.” once said, “Today was good. Today was fun. Tomorrow is another one.”
The day finally came for the the big boat to blow it’s loud horn. Three times the horn sounded, signaling its imminent departure to all who wanted to sail home from Siam. With tearful hugs, Sho and Tye bid Xe goodbye and safe travels. Oh, and they exchanged email addresses so they could keep in touch and maybe even plan how to get together again. Xe dawdled so long, not wanting to leave her new – and only – cat friends that she almost missed the big boat, leaping astride the boarding ramp just as it was being pulled onto the ship. She jumped into the big boat and turned quickly toward shore, her ears flapping in the wind. She feared this would be the last time she would see Sho and Tye, and her eyes blurred as she blinked back schnauzer tears. And then it came to her: Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened. – Dr. Seuss
Xe’s fears were not to come true. The three best friends – or maybe just two of them – would find a way to see each other again soon.
CHAPTER 2: A DOG AND HER CAT FRIEND, STILL WITH NO PLOT HOUND
Lucy: Xena, as your most excellent editor, I must nudge you to write the second part of your story. Your fans are waiting, and you don’t want to disappoint them. As for me, I need a nap. Why don’t you do that while I sleep?
Xena: You’re right, Luce. Let me think. *5 minutes later, which in dog time is at least half an hour* OK, here’s what happened next…
Summer slid into fall, and fall into winter, and the Siamese cats Sho and Tye missed their new schnauzer friend named Xe. “I want to go find Xe in the great USA,” meowed Tye. “She’s my only schnauzer friend – my only doggie friend, really. And we’re like sisters now.”
Come spring, Tye was determined to jump a ship and sail to the great USA to visit Xe. Sho warned her about the dangers, and said it would be smarter to stay at home near their Hut Canada, and let Xe come back and visit them. Tye argued that Xe had told her that the USA didn’t have any crocodiles or cobras, so it must be a safe place.
In the end, Tye did what she wanted, as most young, strong-willed girls do. Sho stayed behind to protect Canada. While trying to figure out a way to get to the great USA, Tye met a young Siamese boy who became smitten with her beauty and promised to help her board the next ship heading that way. The boy, whose name was Buddy, got a job on the ship as a deck hand, and smuggled Tye on board in his duffel bag.
Eventually the Captain found out, and was about to throw Tye overboard when she cried out, “Wait! Have you seen any mice on this ship since we left port? NO! No you haven’t, because I have been earning my passage. Come down to my, er, Buddy’s cabin and you can see I’m telling the truth. It would be unwise to throw me – your mouser – overboard!”
So down to Buddy and Tye’s cabin they went, where the Captain, delighted and astounded that Tye was telling the truth, found the ship’s mice.
After that, the Captain and Tye spent a lot of time together, becoming fast friends. He often tossed the fish he caught to Tye to eat. He even gave her some corn to share with her mice friends – on the condition that the mice stay in Tye’s cabin. The little mice had never lived so well, with a soft bed and a steady supply of food, so they were happy to remain where they were.
Time flew by, and soon the ship docked at a port in Texas, USA. As Tye stepped off the ship onto American soil, an ICY officer put her in pawcuffs and told her she was being detained as an illegal Siamese cat. She was frightened and bewildered! No one had ever treated her like this. The ICY person was cold to her pitiful cries and pleas and carted her off to a horrid detention center.
“Are those the bodies of ones who were here before us?” whispered Tye, but no one answered her.
After a couple of weeks of eating nothing but rotten vegetables, Tye made friends with one of the ICY people. The officer said she wasn’t really ICY, just a bit COOL, and that – please don’t tell anyone – she loved cats and would try to help her. The COOL person smuggled in her IPad. Tye used it to contact Xe, asking her to come and help her escape from this awful detention center in Texas. Tye explained that cats, especially Siamese cats, had been targeted as something called “undesirables,” and were being framed as murderers and liars and thieves and were even taking jobs from American cats. Every day, cats were taking the fall for the Americans who had actually committed these crimes.
Xe was confused as to why Tye had come to visit without emailing her first. Then she was sad at what had happened. Then she was mad – outraged, actually – at the injustice of it all, and at what poor, innocent Tye was going through. Now was not the time to assign blame – that might come later. Xe’s first priority was freeing Tye from the bondage. Or at least from the cat detention center. She would be a Freedom Rider. “It’s a good thing I have some experience riding,” she thought, as she remembered her one – and only – time on a horse.
“Mom,” declared Xe, “I have to go help my cat friend, Tye. She’s found herself in a pooping-outside-the-litter-box load of trouble, and none of it is her fault. I have to free her from the ICY people. I’ll think of a plan on my way to Texas.”
“I can’t find the horse, I’d better take a bus. Yes, a bus. This is a job for Xe Schnauzer Warrior Princess.
CHAPTER 3: TYE AND XE WITH A PLOT HOUND
Lucy: OK Xena, it’s time for the next installment of your story. Let’s see, you left Tye in an interment camp for illegal Siamese and others our government doesn’t want here, and you were on your way to get her out. What happens next? Do you get Tye out and bring her home with you?
Xena: Well, you see, I’ve been thinking about it, and sometimes things get worse before they get better. At least that’s what I’ve heard. But maybe not too much worse…
Xe took her suitcase full of good raw meat – frozen to keep it from spoiling – and hopped the first bus she could find heading out to the detention center in Texas where poor Tye had been imprisoned.
Xe told the driver what was happening, and he flipped on his rear sign and put the peddle to the metal, ignoring the rest of his stops. Later that night the driver dropped Xe off at the address Tye had given for the center and wished her well.
Meanwhile, Tye was saying goodbye to the second doggie she had ever made friends with. Pedro the chihuahua had been picked up by Border Patrol and been detained until he found a sponsor. A nice American man rescued Pedro the chihuahua. Instead of saying, “Gracias,” Pedro kept yelling, “Quiero Taco Bell.” He must have been starving!
Tye, also famished from subsisting on a diet of rotten vegetables, pleaded with the man to take her, too. “Please, nice man, won’t you take me home with you, or at least get me outta here and onto an elephant or a bus to my friend’s house in Tennessee?” But the man said he was only allowed to rescue one detainee at a time. He promised to try to come back for her, though, especially since she and Pedro were now friends.
Xe had hidden in the bushes until the breakfast bell rang and the guards all went off to eat. As she stealthily approached the fence, a man carrying a chihuahua walked past her.
The pup kept screaming something about Taco Bell, and that made Xe’s stomach growl loudly. The man walked faster, thinking Xe was about to attack. Xe thought about following them, hoping to score a taco, but resolved to get Tye out from behind that fence first. Yes! Tye was her first priority, even over her stomach, and that shows a lot of love from a schnauzer, even a warrior princess schnauzer.
All the resolve in the world couldn’t help her when an ICY Plott Hound guard suddenly appeared from around the corner. He had heard all the yelling, and came to see if someone was passing out tacos. Xe decided to make a run for it ..
… when the ICY Plott Hound guard grabbed her by the back leg and slung her into a bag with a sign on it that read, “Schnauzer meat, good to eat.” Xe hoped the sign was a joke, but what kind of a person – or dog – would joke about that! In short order, Xe was processed (no, not made into meat; her paperwork got finished), then she was thrown into the detention area.
Even though this was not the reunion they had both imagined, Tye and Xe were happy to see each other again. “What’s in that red cooler over there?” asked Xe. “Rotten vegetables,” replied Tye, with a look of both disdain and resignation on her face. Xe was about to explain that there were good probiotics in some rotten veggies when a sudden flash of hope shone in Tye’s eyes. She looked at Xe and whispered, “We can plan our escape together. There is a COOL guard in here who likes me, and she will help us!”
The next day, when the COOL guard came to see how Tye was doing, she was surprised to see her favorite cat cuddled up sleeping with a schnauzer warrior princess – and Minnie Mouse.
Xe had remembered to pack her bed, a pretty scarf to wear to sleep in, and a mouse toy for Tye. Tye had to meow Xe awake so they could confer with the COOL guard.
“Excuse me ma’am,” woofed Xe (Xe had been raised to have good manners), “could you please help us get out of here? I am Xe Schnauzer Warrior Princess, and I am a citizen of the great US, born in Georgia and living in Tennessee. You can check my AKC papers, it’s all right there.”
After looking over Xe’s official papers, the COOL lady took them to the office to start the process for her release. And since Xe really is a citizen of the US, she also applied to be Tye’s sponsor. While Xe and Tye waited, they filled their bellies with the now thawed meat that Xe had brought.
87 hours later, the paperwork was still not ready. Come nightfall, the two friends snuggled up to sleep in the comfort of each other’s company. The next morning the COOL guard, also called the NICE (short for Not ICY) guard by Tye and Xe, returned with all the paperwork they needed to be released and allowed to go back to Tennessee.
“Well, we’re out,” meowed Tye, who still wore her ID from the detention center. “Now what?”
“I don’t know,” woofed Xe. “I don’t know how to get home from here, and I want my Mommy.”
“Don’t worry,” Tye said in her best soothing voice. “I’ve come all the way from Siam, almost got thrown overboard on the ship, got locked up in a detention center, ate rotten vegetables for a week, and then my bestie XeXe came and rescued me!”
At Tye’s words, Xe had to smile, if only a little, and her heart swelled with love for her cat friend. “You’re right, TyeTye, it can only get better from here. Let’s go home.”
The sun was just rising behind them as they began their journey north on paw, hoping that a NICE person would give them a lift to Tennessee.
Story and pictures by Xena, all rights reserved, except for certain cats in Canada who are part of this story. But the mean old plott hound can’t use this to his own devices.
Lucy: Your stories are selling like hotcakes, Xena. We should be getting royaltreats or something like that. I’m going to check with our publicist. Oh Mo-o-o-o-ommm…
Xena: What’s the “we?” I’m doing all the work.
Lucy: Xena, you’re on a roll, so take it away!
Xena: Take it away where? What are you talking about, Lucy? I’m watching to see where this squirrel goes.
Lucy: I mean, go ahead with more of your story. Your adoring fans are waiting to hear what happens next. *sigh* I’ll watch the squirrel for you.
Xena’s story: A Dog a Cat, a Horse and another Plot Hound
With a newly-found resolve, Xe and Tye headed in the general direction they thought was toward Tennessee. It was early morning, so they kept the sun on their right as they walked. From old habits in Siam, where Tye was from, they kept away from the water as they traveled, so nothing could jump out and eat them. As they walked they talked about many things. The pair recalled the fun they had together in Siam, and how Tye would catch mice to throw at any leopards or tigers they might encounter. That led to Tye relating her voyage from Siam to Texas and the mice she caught and cared for. Then the conversation took a more serious turn.
“You know what happened to you when you got off the ship wasn’t right.” Xe got angry just thinking about it. “We need to do something so it doesn’t happen to any more Siamese cats.”
“It’s true, Xe. I was so excited, thinking about seeing you again and the fun we would have, and the next thing I knew I was sitting in that detention center eating rotten vegetables. I hadn’t done anything wrong! I don’t understand why I got treated like that!”
“We need to go to the big white house and ask the people in charge to make those ICY people stop doing that,” exclaimed Xe. But it’s a long walk; we’re going to need a ride.”
No sooner did Xe woof their need for a ride than a horse came galloping up to them.
“I hear you’re in need of a ride.” The horse bowed her head as she addressed Xe. “How can I help you free everyone of tyranny and oppression and rotten vegetables?”
Xe and Tye looked up at this huge horse, who seemed to genuinely want to help them, even if she was a bit zealous and also a bit off the mark of their goal. “What is your name?” they asked in unison, both with a slight quiver of fear in their voices.
“I am a Horse with No Name,” replied the magnificent creature. “Tell me why you are out here in the middle of nowhere, and where you want to go.”
Xe was spell-bound that there could be a Horse with No Name. Ignoring the horse’s question, Xe asked, “Have you been to the desert? I hear in the desert you can remember your name.”
When the Horse with No Name didn’t reply, Tye and Xe related their experiences over the past few days.
“Stay here,” said the horse as she wheeled about on her hind legs and cantered off into the scrub brush, just out of earshot. They could hear her whinnying and nodding her head, but couldn’t make out what she was saying into her iphone.
“Both of you, climb on my back and I will get you as far as I can,” the Horse with No Name told them as she skidded to a stop in front of them.
The two friends looked at each other, and, with unspoken agreement leaped upon the Horse with No Name’s back.
As their newest friend started off at a full gallop, Xe and Tye laid down and hung on for dear life. “Ho No!” they screamed,” we’re going to die!”
“How did you guess that I go by ‘Ho No?’ asked the Horse with No Name.
“Is that a Hawaiian word?” asked Tye.
“No, it’s short for HOrse with NO Name,” replied the horse. “And I won’t let you die. I’ll stop if I feel one of you slipping off.”
On like that they went for about 87 miles, with Ho No settling into a smooth trot that she could keep up for hours. The riders kept their eyes closed for a long time, pressing themselves against her broad, flat back. Except for an occasional grunt, their claws digging into her sides didn’t seem to bother Ho No at all. At one point, Tye opened her eyes, and seeing how pretty Ho No’s mane was braided, asked her about it. “It’s because I’m a girl,” Ho No said as if that was the only explanation needed.
After what felt like 87 hours Ho No came to a halt. “This is the end of the line for me, girls,” she whinnied. I’ve gotten you as far as northeast Georgia. I spoke with one of my friends, who is going to pick you up and take you the rest of the way to the big white house.”
“Will we see you again?” Tye began to ask, but Ho No had already disappeared down the back dirt road in a cloud of dust. Or maybe it was a cloud of red clay since they were, after all, in Georgia
They waited there for about 87 minutes, watching for another horse to appear, hopefully one with a real name. They were taking advantage of the fresh water nearby (that Ho No had promised was safe), when an old truck came charging down the road.
“Xe Xe,” whispered Tye, ” get your nose out of the grass and look at this. I think maybe the ICY Plott Hound has found us, but something looks different about him.”
At that, Xe whipped around, ready to make a run for it with Tye.
CHAPTER 5: A RIDE DOWN THE ROAD
The driver in the old truck barked at them to stop. “Y’all stop now, y’hear? I’m your ride to the big white house. Didn’t Ho No tell y’all to ‘spect me?”
“So you aren’t the ICY Plott Hound from Texas?” the two friends asked.
“Golly no, I’m a NICE Plott Hound from the hills of Georgia. My name’s Sally. That thar one you mentioned is my cousin Leroy. He thanks he’s hot stuff. Come on and jump in the back and I’ll getcha where yer goin”.
“I think we should trust her,” whispered Xe. “What do you want to do, Tye?”
“Let’s get in. We can always jump out if it’s a trick. But my gut feeling is she’s one of the good hounds.” So off they went in the back of the truck, getting ever closer to the big white house.
*87 hours later* (It was an old, slow truck.)
“Here we are, little ladies,” woofed Sally, “the big white house is thar, behind all those bushes. Which reminds me, it’s time for a potty break.”
“Let’s go find the person who can help us stop this unjust incarceration of Siamese cats,” meowed Tye. She jumped out the window of the truck, and Sally helped Xe down from the truck bed. Before she would go any further, Xe ran a comb through her beard and leggings and put on her favorite scarf, so as to make a good impression on the person in charge. Xe asked Sally, “Is this the big white house?”
“Well,” Sally replied as she hurried off to do her bizness in the bushes, ” it is a big white house, now ain’t it?” After bagging up her droppings in a Mickey D’s carry out container left over from lunch the previous day, Sally hopped behind the wheel and drove off in a cloud of white exhaust fumes.
After Xe and Tye stopped coughing, they climbed the many steps up to the front door of the big white house, where they woofed and meowed as loudly as they could until the door opened. Upon telling the door man why they were there, they were ushered into a stately sitting room, where they waited for the Person In Charge, who they decided to refer to as PIC.
Pretty soon the PIC entered the room. Xe had seen pictures of the ICY PIC who lived there, and was not looking forward to this encounter. As expected, this man was tall, made even taller by the stove top hat he was wearing. “That’s different – I’ve never seen him wear a hat on TV,” thought Xe. His hair wasn’t that fake yellow, and his face didn’t look the same, either. Maybe a new person had moved in and taken over, she thought. He lowered himself into the largest chair in the room and removed his black hat. “Welcome to the big white house,” he said congenially. “What can I do for you today?”
“I would like some fresh meat and veggies, please,” Xe politely asked, just before her stomach started growling again.
Tye started to protest, meowing that wasn’t the reason they were there, but the NICE PIC clapped his large hands. The person who answered the door entered the room, and the NICE PIC told him to bring his guests food, saying, “No one can think right on an empty stomach. Give them whatever they want.”
Xe requested salmon, and whatever fresh veggies were available. After thinking for only a moment, Tye asked for shrimp. While they were eating, the NICE PIC told them entertaining stories about his childhood and his beloved dogs and cats. Soon they were able to relax with full bellies and an affinity for the NICE PIC.
Tye settled into her new friend’s lap, partially slipping under his suit coat to keep warm. Xe sat at his feet while they took turns relating the injustice of incarcerating innocent Siamese cats, as well as the horrors of the detention center. The NICE PIC, who said they could just call him Abe, softly stroked Tye while listening attentively. As their story came to an end, he promised to make a Proclamation declaring all animals and people equal, and that he would put an immediate end to the detentions. They sensed he was an honest person, and thanked him profusely.
“Now, let’s get a picture of us all for posterity,” he said. I believe this day will go down in history. Xe was very glad she had spiffed herself up after her long journey, and hoped no food was stuck to her beard as was wont to happen. Abe assured her that she looked lovely, so she relaxed and faced the camera.
The two friends accepted the invitation to stay the night, and, after a night-night treat, slept soundly in a big soft bed.
The next morning they all ate hearty breakfasts which had been prepared specifically to each of their tastes and diets. It was a beautiful, sunny day and Xe and Tye were outside taking care of necessary business in the bushes when a shadow suddenly covered them both. Tye began to jump up and down, meowing loudly. Xe thought the shadow must be from a cloud until she looked up – and would have wet her pants if she had any on and if she hadn’t already taken care of that business – and saw something she thought was only in story books. Abe had offered them a helicopter ride back to Tennessee, but it seemed they wouldn’t need to use it after all.
XENA’S STORY PART 2: SHO GOES TO AMERICA
CHAPTER 1: A MAGIC CARPET RIDE
“Geez, I miss that white tornado. Didn’t think I would, she talks non-stop and is ready to play at the drop of a paw. Taking in the sun and laying back is getting old very quickly.”
Squish the Siamese elephant, wandered by and Sho confided how much she missed Tye. Squish, a very understanding elephant, had an idea. “Go see Tye and perhaps you’d be happier over there and want to stay.”
“What a fantabulous idea! Tye will be happy to see me.” purred Sho. “Thanks, Squish.”
“No problem Sho. You need to be with Tye. I feel her and Xe are having hard times over there and she’s never been parted from you before,” said Squish.
A short while later, Sho received a disturbing call from her little sister, and ran to talk to Squish. “Tye borrowed a phone from a NICE lady – not the ICY lady – at an internment camp where she was taken straight off the boat. She was almost in tears as she told me about being forced to eat rotten vegetables and not allowed to contact anyone for help. Tye said Xe, arrived to help and finally got them both out. But now Xe was panicking ’cause she didn’t know the way to Tennis-See other than walking through Texas. So, Tye wanted me to follow the highway near Houston in Texas and look for them walking home. Seems vague, Squish.”
“I keep seeing the two of them so happy together here, and can’t imagine what they must be going through, ” replied Squish, almost in tears.
Sho suddenly had an idea. “Let’s go, Squish, and see what we can find in the Magic Carpets around here.” Sho brought out the ladder and climbed up on Squish’s back and they headed for the village. Squish had a sensitive back since Tye had done the Siamese dance for rain on her back.
“Tye used to play with Omar’s kids and she said they were little terrors that would give crappy old toys for any candy. They learned this behaviour somewhere and she says the nuts don’t fall far from the tree so I’ll be on the look out for Omar the Siamese Shiftless Carpetbagger tricks. Tye is always on my mind…I must hurry and be with her and Xe.”
They hit 2 flying carpet outlets and were disappointed in the quality of the carpet threads. Then they hit Omar’s Emporium. Omar’s had revved up carpets but they wrinkled up during flight so it was uncomfortable sitting. The wrinkles also made steering a hazard. No seat belts and the threads were not water proof. They were inexpensive but dang nab it, they looked cheap and wobbly.
Next stop Aladdin’s Magic Carpets.
A huge Genie welcomed Sho inside. She told him she wanted a thick, sturdy Magic Carpet with all the safety precautions. No souped up piece of crap as she was flying to America to see friends and the object was to arrive in one piece. Gene, the Genie, found the most superb carpet. Luxurious seat belts, with a relaxing cruising speed and the “paw to the fiber count” of 300 MPH. An instant sale!
Sho put the ladder up to Squish’s back and leaped on. “Sorry Squish. I was so happy about our new Magic Carpet I forgot to retract my claws.” Sho said apologetically.
Sho thought of how hot and tired Xe and Tye must be, pawing their way across Texas to Xe’s home in Tennis-see. “Stupid name for a state as it brings up visions of everyone playing tennis in short skirts and funny hats,” Sho thought. She reprimanded herself for being judgemental…..this was the time to accept whatever cultural habits that the States have. Tye would be delighted Sho was going to be headed over to the States. Sho had to pack up Canada and have Squish water the plants everyday. Sho would let Squish know what was happening. Now, up and away and hope Tye and Xe find their way safe and easy.
CHAPTER 2: A SIDE TRIP TO THE COUNTRY CANADA
Now when we last left Sho, she had chosen a fantabulous Magic Carpet and looked at the map so she knew how to get to the United States.
The shortest way was to go through the Gulf of Siam into the Indian Ocean and then make a sharp left to the Pacific Ocean. Sho also noted that if she turned right from the Indian Ocean she could travel the Atlantic and…oh look, there’s the country of Canada. Sho dreamed of going to Canada one day; that’s why she named the hut Canada….just to have a piece of this huge country near.
“I’ll take the long way and shake any bugs out of this Magic Carpet. I better use warp drive for half the trip or I’ll be months getting there. I never imagined the ocean had this much water….The tag around my neck states who I am and my next of kin so if anything happens hopefully Tye will be notified. If anybody can find her and Xena,” Sho mused.
“You’ll be be fine…let’s not get maudlin ole gal.”
“Who said that?” exclaimed Sho. “Is there a freeloader I’m carrying to the States?”
“Hehe…Heaven’s no. I’m the CADA – that stands for Canada Activated Device Assistant – the Genie installed in the Magic Carpet before you left.”
“Some assistant you are CADA…where are we? We must be close to Canada but there’s nothing but blue for as far as I can see.”
“We’re almost to Newfoundland in Canada,” replied CADA.
“REALLY!! You flew past the United States,” worried Sho. “As long as we’re here, let’s drop down and step on Canadian soil.”
After landing the Magic Carpet, Sho walked around until she met a dog…a Newfoundland dog. This dude was huge! He looked more like the pictures she’d seen of a black bear, but he seemed like an easy-going, happy fellow.
Sho padded up to the huge dog and the dog said, “Ow’s she cuttin’, me cocky?“
Sho stepped backwards in surprise. “Is this guy swearing at me?” she thought. She realized there may be cultural differences but this dude was….really different! Sho chose to treat him as a potential friend as it’s harder to get mad and bite a friend. Sho plastered a warm smile on her face and said, “How are you, my friend?” To which the dog dude replied, “Aye, that’s what I says.”
Sho told the Newfie dog her name and that she was on her way to the United States to find her sister that left their home in Siam to see her schnauzer friend Xe in Tennis-See. The Newfie dog introduced himself as Buddha. Buddha said he’d heard about a Siamese cat that had been thrown into an Internment Camp when she arrived in the United States – for just being Siamese! Most of the Canadian furries knew about this one little cat struggling to be free. She had become an icon of much of what had gone wrong in the states. He said her name was….Tye.
“That’s my sister!!” cried Sho.
“Go awn wich ya!” said Buddha, shocked that he had met the sister of Tye.
Sho liked being with Buddha in Canada but Tye needed her, so she must continue her odyssey. Buddha slapped a paw on Sho’s back and hollered, “May the wind aways blow in your back.”
Sho understood Buddha and waved bye to her only Canadian friend. Up she and CADA went, headed for Texas.
“This is a lonely looking place CADA,” Sho worried. “The cities are massive here so let’s stay along the back roads. Let’s go ask this horse if she’s seen Xe and Tye.”
Sho eased the Magic Carpet down and introduced herself. The horse told Sho she was called a Horse with No Name but her friend’s called her, Ho No. Ho No told Sho about helping a white cat and a schnauzer get to Georgia and said he’d show them the way.
“What if I lose you cause I’m in the air and you’re on the ground,” Sho asked.
“That’s easy enough Sho, just start singing, “Georgia on my Mind,” and I will come galloping into view cause “all roads lead back to you.” This sounded like a great plan to Sho so she leaped back onto the CADA the Magic Carpet and began following Ho No.
TO BE CONTINUED….Will Sho find Tye and Xe or will Ho NO lead them on a wild horse chase?
CHAPTER 3: THE FLIGHT TO TENNIS-SEE
Sho was riding on the Magic Carpet over where the big white house was supposed to be. “Holy kittens, Look at the size of that white house, It puts our poor little Hut Canada, to shame. What is that in the backyard….it looks like… “Up here Tye and Xe!”
“Look up…up, up,” Sho thought. “They see me, CADA. Oh catnip heaven, they’re safe!” Sho let out a deep breath she’d been holding in since she learned Tye was in an internment camp. Now she could relax, the travelers were ok.
Xe and Tye were both running in circles and waving their paws. Sho waved back and brought the magic carpet down gently beside the Rose Garden.
Tye took a closer look. “You didn’t get this carpet from Omar’s Emporium….this carpet has ever so strong fibers. Omar would give you some dang rug that would fall apart as soon as you hit warp drive,” grinned Tye.
“This carpet is from Aladdin’s and a Genie installed a Canada Activated Device Assistant,” replied Sho. “I call her CADA.” Tye slapped Sho’s paw in a high paw and hugged Sho saying, “Well, I guess we’re going to the country Canada soon….it is the land of the free, I’ve been told.”
“Come on Xe, don’t be shy….step on board,” meowed Tye. “Sho will stabilize the carpet so it can hold all of us.”
“I just want to say goodbye to the NICE man, Abe. I’ll be right back,” said Xe.
“CADA how far is it to Tennis-See?” Sho inquired of the magic carpet.
“Far enough!” answered CADA. “It’s nowhere near Canada either.”
“Simmer down, CADA, we have to take Xe home to see her mom and Lucy….not to mention her dad. Ok. we better get started then.”
Sho was speechless at the beauty of the trees and mountains under her. Tye asked Xe where they were and Xe explained that these were the Blue Ridge Mountains.
“Should we land down in the midst of the trees,” Sho shouted in a happy voice.
“No way!” yelled Xe. “It’s very wild in the Blue Ridge Mountains. There are even mosquitoes….I hate that buzzing in my sensitive ears.”
“OK, Xe …by the way what state are we in?“ inquired Sho. “Is this Tennis-See?
“We’re close,” woofed Xe, “but not yet, Sho. We have to keep going.”
“Are the American’s ashamed of this here Washington DC?” Sho inquired with furrowed brow.
Xena hollered…“No friggin way….this is the home of democracy for our nation.”
“Well, it’s very difficult to find Washington DC on any map…maybe they want to hide it from terrorists,” stated Sho. “It says here that we’re not far from Chattanooga Tennis-See. Let’s lay back and relax. Anyone need some Siamese Cat nip?”
Xe howled with laughter saying, “Me, a schnauzer taking cat nip….no woofie way!”
Tye, offended, opened her mouth and told Xe, “You’re buying into all those old stereotypes Xe, that say cat nip works strangely on dogs and if dogs get high they start meowing. Rubbish I say….the only way you’ll find out for yourself is to try it. We would never ever give you something that would hurt you, so let’s dig in.” Tye told Xe that Siamese cat nip was special in that it relaxes your whole body but without the drunk effects.
“You brought the fresh nip from the garden. It’s the best one, Sho.” Tye purred with a laughing voice. Soon, Xe and Tye were mellowing out and pointing at the sights.
As they were relaxing on cruise, Sho told her sister about the country of Siam hearing of her plight through the internment camp, as well as the stories about Tye and Xe attempting to change life for the better. Sho said that all of Siam wanted to honour Tye.
“Really?” cried Tye, astonished. “They want to honour me? How are they planning to do that?”
“They are thinking about changing the country’s name to Tyeland to honour you,” Sho stated proudly.
“Oh kittens, that would be wonderful. That is an honour!” Tye wiped a happy tear away. “Choo choo should be coming up soon,” said Tye.
“Choo Choo? Do you mean Chattanooga?” asked Xe
“Yeah… that’s the name, seems long to me. Choo Choo or just Choo gets the message across,” Tye said with a grin.
“We’re almost there,” exclaimed Xe! “C’mon Sho, let me sit up front and steer. I know where we are going!”
Sho knew that CADA’s built-in navigation system would get them where they were going no matter who drove. She quietly agreed and swapped places with Xe. CADA wouldn’t let Xe crash them. Sho knew she made the right decision when she saw how happy Xe looked.
“Hey, I can smell home….Lu’s scent is on the wind.” Xe cried out. “There’s Lu!!”
“Over there!” Xe barked. “That’s my house!” The Siamese sisters looked to where Xe was pointing and right there, on the front lawn, was a shiny, striped dog looking up at them.
PART 3: SHELTERING IN PLACE WITH THE SIAMESE SISTERS
CHAPTER 1: A HAPPY HOMECOMING
“Hey, that must be your sister, Lu,” meowed Tye.
“OMD, it is her! I didn’t realize how much I’ve missed her until now,” cried Xe.
Then Tye and Sho noticed the strangest thing. There were several stuffies looking through the front window of the house at them! Xe didn’t notice them. She was keeping her eyes on Lu, who was running to open the front door for them.
After making a soft landing on the front lawn, Xe tore into the house after Lu. Lu had been very worried about Xe and had missed her tons and tons too.
When Lu was done welcoming Xe back with lots of hugs and kisses, she told Xe and Sho and Tye about a surprise that she had asked their Dad to set up. She told Xe to go play with her stuffie friends while she got Dad to help her get the surprise started.
While the bears got Xe caught up on what they’d been doing while she was gone, Xe tried to see what Lu’s surprise was.
Sho was mesmerized with Rainbow Bear. She wondered if Rainbow tasted like candy, but used her wisdom and self-control to not bite or lick her to find out. Behind her, Winter bear (in the blue scarf) was secretly adoring Sho. He thought she was the most beautiful creature he had ever seen.
Meanwhile, Lu was busy helping their Dad to get the surprise started.
“Hey Xe! Sho! Tye! Come on in here and say hey.”
The travelling trio went on into the library to find out what was up. They saw an app on the computer called Zoom. They didn’t immediately understand how they could see their new travelling friends, and see themselves as well. But they forgot about the “hows” when their friends started talking to them.
“Look,” meowed Tye, “there’s Pedro from the detention center, with the nice man who became his sponsor and rescued him.”
“I got Taco Bell,” exclaimed Pedro. “I get it every day if I want. I’ve learned to like fried catfish and black-eyed peas, too. Oh, and I am very glad your amiga the schnauzer dog found you, seniōra Tye.
“There’s Ho No,” woofed Xe. “I think I like looking at her better from the front than from atop her back.”
“I knew my friend Sally would get you where you needed to be,” whinnied the Horse with No Name. “And when I saw the other Siamese cat on that crazy magic carpet, I sent her your way. “
“But why did you work so hard to help us?” inquired Tye.
“I could tell you would persevere until you made a difference in the lives of hundreds, maybe thousands. And you didn’t disappoint me,” Ho No replied.
“Y’all done good,” chimed in Sally the Plot Hound. “It was a real pleasure to be part of your adventure and help make history!”
“Thank you, Sally, and God bless you! We love you!” both Tye and Xe shouted at once. Then the two BFF’s looked at each other and laughed.
“I told Mr. Abe y’all got home OK, and he asked me to let y’all know that every one of the Siamese cats in detention have been reunited with their families and offered loving homes in the USA,” Sally drawled with a smile and a wink.
“With my Sponsor’s help, I called Squish the elephant over in Siam to let him know that everything worked out well,” barked Pedro. “Siam experienced a minor earthquake from Squish jumping up and down with joy. He wishes you all well, and wanted to make sure Tye knows that Siam is now officially Tyeland. They even have a new flag.”
Tye almost fainted from excitement and a feeling of wonder.
“And I,” said Ho No, “reached Buddha in Newfoundland. He didn’t have any internet to join in Zoom, but said something like, ‘You’s be out and see de world, now find yous a home an’ be yous happy cats, lo.”
“Thank you all for helping my sister and our dog friend,” purred Sho. “You’re the best friends ever.”
Amidst many well wishes and hopes to see each other again, everyone signed off Zoom, ’cause they only had a personal account with a 40 minute time limit.
“That was so great, I just wish we could have seen them ‘in person’ again,” commented Xe.
“Oh, you won’t be seeing anyone ‘in person’ again – except each other – for a while,” replied Lu. “There’s a Shelter in Place order because of the pandemic that hit just before you returned home. I don’t even know how you got this far.”
“But, but, we were going to Canada!” shouted both the Siamese cats.
“Hey, Mommy,” yelled Xe, “you’d better stock up on shrimp. Come on girls, I’ll show you your room, and then we can think up new adventures.”
*2 days later*
“I told you her beard is lickable after she eats, right?” woofed Lu.
“Oh, it does taste good, with a smorgasboard of flavors,” replied Sho. “This part here smells like Fancy Feast,” Tye mewed as she pawed through to find the best morsels.”
“I knew I never shoulda let them meet Lu,” sighed Xe.
CHAPTER 2: A SPA DAY
“I’m getting bored with this Shelter in Place thingie, complained Tye. “Hey Xe, let’s play a new game.”
“OK,” answered a likewise bored Xe. “What do you want to play?”
*a bit later*
“Sit still, Xe. I’m almost done fixing your hair. Then I’ll do your nails.”
“What have you done?” exclaimed Xe. “Curlers in my beard? And I see nail clippers! I’m outa here.”
“Wait, Xe, you’re going to like this next part….trust me.”
“Mmmm, can I have the recipe for this juicy drink? When can I eat the cucumber slices?”
“Wait til I’m done with my spa soak and I’ll get you finished up, Xe.”
“What do you suppose Tye and Xe are doing in the house?” Lu wondered.
“All I know,” meowed Sho lazily, “is I’m enjoying laying here in the sun. Do you like the drink I made for you, Lu? I’m sure those two are having fun playing some silly game or another.”
“And then you step like this *hic* and wave your front arms *hic* and wiggle your hips. Meow, meow, meow.”
CHAPTER 3: CORONA AND FLIPPING THE BIRD
“If we had to be stuck somewhere other than Canada during this pandemic,” said Sho, “I’m glad it was here with you and Xe. And Tye had the right idea with this spa tub. I – being a cat – didn’t think I would like it. But it’s so relaxing.”
“It’s true, Sho. And this inoculation of Corona tastes pretty good. Do you think it would work better if we had it in ‘shots’?”
“BOL, MOL, ha, ha, ha, *hic”
Xe and Tye burst through the open door. “Hey, what are you two doing?”
“OMC, I can’t look,” gasped Tye. “I think they’re naked!”
“Of course we are, silly cat. None of us wears clothes. Well, except when you put on that strange-looking hula skirt. The real question is, what have you two been up to?” querried Lu.
Peeking through her toes, Tye said, “I flipped Xe the bird.
“And then I shot Tye the bird.”
“Yep,” they both said, “we kept flipping each other the bird and it was lots of fun.”
*earlier that day*
“I’m so glad we found these old rackets up in your attic.” *whack*
*whack* “Me too, Tye. Shoot that angry bird back to me and I’ll flip this one right back atcha.”
XENA’S STORY PART 4: THINK CANADA
CHAPTER 1: BACK TO TYELAND
“Tye, this is a lovely home with all the best foods available for our tasting but its time we thought about Canada, the country, and Canada our hut,” said Sho. “We have to have someone look after the house in Tyeland while we are gone.”
” What if we like it in Canada and want to stay, Sho?” inquired Tye.
“If we decide to stay like forever, we’ll have to think about it then. Right now, the challenge will be to see our hut – Canada – and have a friend look after it for us.”
“Squish could do it for us, meowed Tye excitedly. “Nobody’s going to mouth off to Squish. We can rent the house out.”
“That’s a great idea Tye. Squish could have the rent for Hut Canada.”
“I miss Squish, Sho, so let’s go visit him and Squash. And how about Lu and Xe? They’re like family. Let’s ask Xe if she wants to help us. I know my bestie will be anxious to go; she loved it in Siam.”
“Xe, we enjoyed staying here with you and Lu very much,” purred Sho. “Your parents welcomed us with open arms, but we need to go home and see how our hut Canada is doing. We miss our friends and need to have a furever home.”
“You could stay here furever, Sho and Tye,” suggested Xe. “Mom would love it….she does admire you both and has a soft spot for you. I’ve noticed Daddy sneezing a lot more, though…”
“She is a wonderful mom and you should be proud. However, we need to find our own mom who’s as gentle and loving as yours. I was thinking, do you want to help us, Xe? We may move along to Canada, the country, and you could come with us. Do you want to go?”
“My middle name is adventure!” exclaimed Xe. “When do we leave? Lu will help Mom and Dad till I get back.”
“Come on Tye and Xe. Hop on. It’s going to be difficult flying at night but we’ll have to avoid radar or we all could end up being, *The American Great Unwanted.* To quote Bette Davis…’Fasten your seat belts. It’s going to be a bumpy night.’”
“It’s kinda’ boring up here at night,” Tye complained. “There’s nothing to see. Xe did you bring Rainbow Teddy?”
“Her name’s Rainbow Bear, and I forgot her, dagnabit. I thought Lu would have reminded me. Guess she forgot too.”
“This is Shaw Air Force Base in South Carolina….near Georgia. Keep up the triple twirls Xe,” instructed Sho.
“I don’t feel so good Sho,” moaned Tye.
“Xe will be finished in a minute Tye. Try not to barf on my new magic carpet. Hey, I wonder if you can see Ho No down there!”
Tye forgot her dizziness from Xe’s maneuver and looked for Ho No.
“There she is, Sho and Xe!” They all waved to Ho No who waved back with her front hooves in the air. “See ya Ho No!”
“OK Xe, quick now, throw the thrusters into overdrive before that cadet pointing up here has a chance to alert his Captain.”
“We just made it outta’ that base in time,” said Sho with relief. ” Sounds like the thrusters need work. We’ll ask the genie to fix them when we get to Tyeland.”
“Tye you still look a little green…have some catnip tea.” Sho meowed gently as she opened her thermos and gave Tye some tea. Tye drank and sniffed the tea deepy….slowly her normal colour came shining through.
“The ocean is so blue and deep….a beautiful postcard,” Sho said half to herself.
“Look, there’s Tyeland up ahead. Do you see what I see? It’s Squish and her little sister Squash!” exclaimed Tye.
They all started waving to Squish and Squash.
“Those two sure look good to me. Do you think they saw us, Sho?” asked Tye.
“Positively. Did you see how Squish’s ears went back and forth? That’s her waving at us,” explained Sho.
“Just for us…..the Rivers of Babylon.”
“The marketplace hasn’t changed,” commented Tye, “but I hope they keep it cleaner than before we left. The food could have been fresher too. I think we got spoiled with Xe’s mom giving us such fresh raw meat.”
“Awww…..our home is still here. I could use a good rest and a delicious meal about now.” After plopping onto the sofa, Sho fell into a deep sleep and started snoring.
What will happen in Part 3? Will Tye and Xe find fun in the long grasses of Tyeland and will Sho wake with an urge to sweep Canada clean of all bugs?
CHAPTER 2: A COBRA ENCOUNTER
Previously, we we left off with a beautiful, 3-point landing of Sho’s magic carpet, right in front of the hut Canada in Tyeland, Shortly afterward, Sho drifted into a deep sleep (probably from exhaustion, although Xe drove all the way there from Tennessee, so Sho shouldn’t have been that tired). As Sho lay snoring…
“Are you getting bored, Xe?” asked Tye.
“Yes. We need an adventure. *thinking* Hey! Do you remember how we wanted to try stuffing a mouse down a cobra’s throat, but your big sister Sho was always around so we couldn’t do it?”
“Yep, and she’s sound asleep in our hut Canada now,” whispered Tye.
The two friends, about to embark on an adventure, took off through the jungle, looking for a mouse and a cobra.
“Hold the snake still!” yelled Tye.
“I’m trying,” Xe yelled back. “Maybe there’s a stick or rock that could help.”
“No!! Don’t let it go!”
“Help!! Help!!” the mouse kept screaming. “I don’t want to die!”
“This mouse screaming for help isn’t helping. And you went up too high in the palm” comlained Xe.
“*gurgle* You’re choking me!” spat out the cobra.
“I’m hanging down as low as I can without falling,” said Tye.
“There’s a little stick I could wedge in the snake’s mouth,” Xe suggested.
Meanwhile, between gurgles and gagging, the Cobra threatened, “When I get loose *gurgle* I’m gonna kill you, *gag* you stupid schnauzer.”
“Forget it,” cried out Tye. “He’ll get you while your back is turned. On the count of 3, we both let go and run as fast as we can. One, two, run!”
A short while later…
“I had a good nap,” said Sho, still a little sleepy-eyed. *yawn* “Did you two do anything interesting while I was asleep.”
“You mean like shove a mouse down a cobra’s throat? Woof, woof!” laughed Xe.
“Yeah, or almost fall out of a palm? Meow, meow, meow.” giggled Tye.
Xe and Tye looked at each other, and together they said, “We waited on you to take a nice walk with us.”
“You two are so funny,” Sho said with a smile. “Let’s stroll down the jungle lane to see if there’s anything interesting going on. Some pretty flowers should be blooming this time of year.”
Xe whispered to Tye, “Do you think the cobra’s gone? Remember, he threatened to kill me!”
Whispering back, Tye said, “Maybe, maybe not. Let’s wear sunglasses or hats just in case, so he doesn’t recognize us. We’ll have to keep a watch-out. And ‘flowers’ will be our code word for ‘cobra.'”
“Do you see any ‘flowers'” Tye asked Xe, who was ahead of her.
“Nope, nothing,” replied Xe, trying to peer out from under her over-sized cap.
“Look,” cried Sho, “I see a flower over here.”
“Eeeeek!” screamed Tye and Xe, who turned and ran (again) all the way back to the hut Canada.
Sho thought about how funny her little sister and their friend are together and was glad they were having a good time. She never suspected that the “pretend” story of a cobra and a palm could be true, and she continues to sleep well because of it.
CHAPTER 3: UNLIKELY FRIENDSHIPS
While Sho was relaxing outside of the Hut Canada, waiting on Tye and Xe, a large cobra snake slithered up to her, stopped and stared. “You’re not the cat I sssaw in the jungle, are you?” he hissed.
Not knowing what the cobra snake was up to, Sho did not let on that her little sister was in the jungle more than her. “I walk through the jungle from time to time,” she replied. “Why do you ask, snake?” inquired Sho, pronouncing the word ‘snake’ as if it was a swear word.
*Hisssss* “My name is King. I am King the Cobra,” he said, not bothering to answer Sho’s question. Continuing to quiz her, he asked, “Do you have a schnauzer friend? I sssmell her. *Hiss* I’ve ssseen a schnauzer in the jungle, and I would like to *hiss* sssay hello.”
At this point, Tye and Xe ran out onto the porch, completely unaware that danger lurked in Tye’s own front yard. When they heard hissing, they looked out to see someone they never wanted in their front yard. They’d been found!
“We have to do something,” whispered Xe.
“One of us has to let Sho know not to tell him we’re here,” replied Tye. “I’m a bit smaller, so I guess I’ll try to sneak down there.”
Even though Xe was shaking like a rattler’s tail, she felt like this was mostly all her fault, and she couldn’t let her friend do this. “No, I’ll go,” she whispered with only a slight quaver in her voice.
Xe ran like she was in an agility trial, zip, zip, and ended up behind the bush near Sho. “Don’t tell him we’re here,” whispered Xe. “He’s mean.”
King, seeing movement, hissed, “What wasss that? Isss sssomeone elsssse here?”
“Why don’t you rest your scales and I will go inside and make us a nice cup of mulberry tea?” suggested Sho, without ever looking over at Xe.
Before anyone could turn back towards Hut Canada, Tye leaped off the other side of the porch and ran full out into town, looking for Squish, their elephant friend. It’s rumored that elephants are afraid of mice, but that snakes are afraid of elephants is known as a fact.
Tye tore through the town looking for Squish until she ran headlong into a tree, bouncing off it and landing on her back. Blinking hard, she looked up and saw it wasn’t a tree after all. It was her friend Squish’s leg.
“Why such a hurry?” inquired Squish. Tye quickly related what trouble they were in, and that she feared for Xe’s life. “No one hurts my friends!” trumpeted the elephant as she took off at full speed toward Hut Canada.
Xe was now hunkered down behind the bush, afraid to move.
“There you are, you slimy piece of shnake!” Squish said with disdain. (shnake is a swear word in elephant-speak.) “You may be King the Cobra in the jungle, but here you’re going to be…”
“Wait, pleasssse!” pleaded King. “I know who you are, too. You’re the mighty Sssquish, who sssquishes snakes until they pop like balloonssss! Pleassse, let me go, and you and your friends will never ssssee me again.” King glanced around, looking for the best escape route.
Squish knew that you had to be dumber than mud to believe a promise from a snake. She thought about the pedicure she had just come from when Tye found her and didn’t relish messing it up with snake guts. But she would do whatever needed done to keep her dear friends safe. Then, from the corner of her eye, she saw a mouse, and tensed. Then she realized that this was not just any mouse, but Missy, who had helped her in the past. Missy had brought her oboe. As she began to play a mesmerizing tune, Squish sneaked around King, whispering, “King, the Cobra Snake, you will never hurt or eat a mouse or a schnauzer or a cat again. You will be kind and gentle to all you meet.”
By this time King was softly swaying back and forth in rhythm to the music. He was being charmed and was open to all suggestions made to him. “You do all these things,” the elephant continued, “and I will let you live.”
Missy stopped playing. Xe stopped shaking. Squish stopped talking. King stopped swaying. It was as if, just for a moment, they were frozen in time. Then King shook his head, looked around, and whispered, “Weren’t we all invited for tea? I do hope there’s a drop of honey. I just love honey with my tea, don’t you?”
Xe stepped out from behind the bush. King looked at her quizzically and said, “Why, what an adorable little dog. Will you be joining us for tea? I do hope so, and perhaps there will be some biscuits as well. I just love biscuits with my tea and honey, don’t you?”
Sho, absolutely shocked, still remembered her manners and hurriedly set the outside table for everyone to have tea with honey and not just one, but two plates of biscuits as well.
From that day on, King never hurt another living thing, and Squish didn’t kill him. In fact, they made up a game called, “don’t step on the snake,” which they had to play every time King came to visit. Squish and Missy often accompanied him, and Sho always made tea with honey and biscuits for everyone. (She is a very good hostess.)
The End. (Well, just the end of this part of the story.)
I am Xena, with Shoko and Tybe playing supporting roles.
Lucy: Xena, this isn’t a play. Nobody is playing any roles.
Xena: I’m getting ready for when it is turned into a Broadway play. I want to be the star, like Angel Lexi.
CHAPTER 4: MORE ADVENTURES IN TYELAND WITH A PEANUT SURPRISE
“You two can stay out of the jungle for awhile. Enough with the hairy visits from reptiles,” scolded Sho.
Tye looked skyward and then at Sho saying, ” We were just goofing around, Sho.”
“Yes,” said Sho with a smile in her voice. “I know you were just having fun.”
“Now we have to get the magic carpet ready for the trip to Canada, Xe and Tye, so let’s pad on down to Aladdin’s Magic Carpets and talk with Gene the Genie about the thruster problem.”
“Sho, look at the new models of Magic Carpets!!” Tye’s blue eyes were wide as dinner plates as she spoke.
“Tye get off that beautiful swirled carpet! Act civilized, you’re not in the jungle now,” Sho said with a smile.
“Look at all the room for my friends, and it’s got my favorite colors! Hey Gene, our thrusters don’t work and they were making sounds like *ouff, puff….poooo-diddle…plop!!* just before they quit. Can you fix them?” asked Tye as she bounced off the new Magic Carpet.
“Not the plop sound too!” Gene said with dismay.
“Yep, and now they won’t work at all,” answered Sho.
“My brother specializes in thrusters, let’s ask him. Gen come look at these thrusters.”
Gen leaped aboard the magic carpet. He listened, then twirled the tassels and spun the rug around twice. Out popped peanuts! Gen hollered “up, up” and the magic carpet purred to life, rising slowly.
“So your problem seems to be a bunch of peanuts stuck in the thruster mechanism,” he explained. “There are a lot of peanuts here. A few wouldn’t bother the thrusters, but great gobs of peanuts slowly worked into them sure will. The peanuts could have been there for months until they worked down into the chamber.”
PEANUTS!! This was the work of Squash, Squish’s little sister. Sho knew Squish would be horrified if she was aware that Squash was sticking anything in the thrusters, so she decided not to tell Squish.
Sho asked Gene and Gen to check over the invisibility cloak and tune up CADA ( Canadian Activated Device Assistant) because the next trip would be to Canada, the country. “We’ll need first rate advice so Cada should be on her toes, so to speak.”
“We’ll get right at it,” the muscle bound Gen stated. “Where in Canada are you heading, the east or the west?”
Sho got this happy distant look on her face and purred, “West, across the Pacific Ocean this time.”
“Good choice fur face,” said Gen. “British Columbia is what they call that province. There are many forests throughout BC.”
Sho and Tye’s eyes lit up as they imagined a jungle of trees.
Meanwhile, Xe and Tye were taking turns pretending to fly the new round carpet. Xe stated she had to have a Magic Carpet all her own. “I want to get an updated model with all the bells and whistles.”
“Gene says it will take them a day or so to get all the extras updated and checked for a long flight,” said Sho with a sigh of resignation. “So, if you can tear yourselves away from that new carpet, lets go home and talk with Squish about renting out the house while we’re gone.”
Reaching the hut Canada, Sho put the bag of peanuts from the thruster on the backyard table. Tye leaped into her usual seat, followed by Sho.
“Xe, where’d you go? There’s something I need to tell you both,” said Sho.
“I went out front to play ball with King the Cobra. He plays so good, I told him he could be a ‘ball python,’” quipped Xe. “Hi everyone,” said King with difficulty. It’s hard to talk with your mouth full of ball.
Sho and Tye laughed so hard they fell off their seats into the sand. While they wiped themselves off – and helped King get his fangs out of the ball – Sho told them all about the peanuts and swore them to secrecy. Xe, Tye and King agreed to say nothing to Squish. The four friends sat and enjoyed some banana sundaes from the fresh banana trees close to the backyard.
“Here come Squish and Squash….remember, not a word or you’ll upset Squish and when she’s upset the earth shakes,” warned Sho.
Squish noticed the bag of peanuts right away and asked Sho why she had them cause Siamese hate nuts.
“I found them,” Sho stated as she pushed the peanuts at Squish.
Squish said she didn’t like peanuts but Squash – who had stashed them all over their house – was so happy to see more.
“Can I please have these Sho?” Squash asked. Young Squash was very polite, as Squish wouldn’t put up with a rude elephant for a sister. For a chuckle, Squish asked little Squash if the peanuts were hers. Squash asked where they were found and Sho, who couldn’t lie, said,” Oh they were found in the Thruster Chamber.” Squash turned a darker shade of grey, ran to the edge of the property, and hid her face – or so she thought.
“I’m so embarrassed sis….I hid them in the chamber so I could keep more nuts. I just love ’em!” cried out Squash.
“You know that the peanuts could have caused the magic carpet to jack knife and dump the occupants out,” Squish said with a soft voice. Squish could see that Squash was indeed sorry and decided to let her little sister be. Squish and Squash hugged and Squash ran over to hear about the new Magic Carpet Tye and Xe were conspiring, er, hoping to get.
Chapter 5: A Party in Tyeland
“Sho, is everything almost ready for our goodbye party?” asked Tye. “I can’t wait! I know there will be good food, but what about games? Are we playing any games?”
“I don’t have any games planned,” replied Sho. “That’s your department. I’m sure you and Xe will think up something. And it’s also a party to celebrate King and his little friend Missy renting our Hut Canada, and to thank Squish for taking care of the arrangements. Look, here come King and Missy now.”
“Great! the first game will be don’t step on King the Cobra. We play that everytime he comes over,” laughed Tye.
“They look hungry, but King always looks hungry. He’s enjoying his new vegetarian diet, but – just like Chinese food – he’s hungry again 10 minutes later. I’ll help you get the food out on the tables, Sho.”
“Ooo, a cupcake just for me,” squeaked Missy. “And it’s got banana tucked into it. Umm, excuse me Miss or Mr. Bird. Who are you?”
“I’m Tyko,” chirped their new visitor. “I live next door, and thought I would come over – I brought my own drink – to welcome my new neighbors. You two are going to rent the hut, right?” Tyko added as she reached for a cookie biscuit. “You two sure are an unlikely pair to be living together,” she added.
“I don’t mean to be rude,” interupted Sho, “but perhaps you should have asked the hostess and owner and current inhabitant of the Hut Canada before joining our soiree.”
“And perhaps you should have asked the snake if you could have any of his favorite biscuits before helping yourself!” hissed King.
“Uh, oh,” thought Missy, “I sure hope that bird’s wings aren’t clipped. She may need them in a moment”.
Meanwhile, at the next table, Sho heard the sound of growling.
“This is my banana split!” growled Xe. “Can’t you see the American flag on the top? It’s specially for me!“
“Aren’t you going to share?” Tye growled back. “We always share.”
“No!” barked Xe. “This one’s mine. Get your own.”
“Stop it! Stop staring at each other and growling,” cried out Sho. “Oh thank Cat, here come Squish and her little sister Squash. I think things are whirling out of control around here.”
“Squish! Over here! I need your help!” Sho yelled.
Squish could hear the fear and distress in Sho’s voice. With a coconut-splitting trumpet, Squish rose up on her hind legs. Her landing didn’t quite cause an earthquake, but it did knock King and Xe off their tables and onto the ground.
“Now that you took care of that, can we eat?” squealed little Squash. “Look at the goodies Sho has for us!”
“Yes, she fixed me a giant banana split with mint ice cream, my favorite!” replied Squish.
“And Sho remembered my favorites, too – peanuts and bananas!” cried out Squash. “Can I have some of your whipped cream topping?”
Squish’s arrival seemed to have done the trick. King returned to the peaceful snake he had become, and invited his bird neighbor, Tyko to share his cookie biscuits. Xe and Tye, much embarrased by their own behaviors, mumbled “sorries” while Sho brought Tye her own banana split.
“I’m really sorry, Tye. I don’t know what got into me. Please forgive me,” Xe quietly woofed. “You can have my banana split if you want it. Here,” Xe said, as she started to slide it over to Tye. In case you don’t live with a schnauzer, let me tell you, it means a whole lot when a schnauzer will give away her favorite foods.
“I forgive you. And I’m sorry I growled at you, too. But look what my sweet sister brought me. And it has the new Tyeland flag on it, so I know it’s just for me, like yours is just for you. You were right about that, Xe. No hard feelings.”
Seeing that peace had once again settled on the land, Sho quietly slipped away from the party to begin packing. Hut Canada would soon be occupied by their good friends, and she and Tye would be leaving for a new home in Canada.
Lucy: Your story really had some punch last time. I can’t wait to see what happens next. Why don’t you take a break from practicing your Freestyle and write another one, Xexe?
Xena: Great idea, Lucy. Although I sure do love the cheese I get when I work my Freestyle figures with Mommy! Let’s see, where were we…
Xena’s Story: Magic Carpet Time
The day after the party, the sun was barely peeking over the tree tops when Sho began to purr in Tye’s ear.
“Rise and shine, little sister. It’s time to go pick up our renovated magic carpet and see how much we can carry on it to take to Canada. Wake up our friend, Xe, too.”
When Tye heard that they were going back to the magic carpet emporium, she shook herself awake, then shook Xe awake. She was secretly hoping that she would get a parting gift of her very own carpet from her friends in Tyeland.
“There’s something I haven’t told you.” Xena was trying to hold back a big smile as they entered the store. “I emailed my Mommy and told her that even though I love you a lot, Tye, we might need some time apart. So, you’ll never guess…she bought me my very own magic carpet. Apparently the emporium takes credit card payments over the phone!”
At this unexpected news, Tyes eyes got huge. She jumped up, grabbed Xe’s paws and they both hopped around together with joy.
“Have you picked it out?” asked Sho.
“Even though I explained that I am a ‘sperienced carpet driver, Mommy said I had to get the new, self-driving model with auto-pilot,” answered Xe. “Here’s the one I chose.”
When Tye saw the carpet Xe had bought, her face went whiter than it usually is, and tears filled her eyes. “But that’s the one I wanted,” she sobbed.
“We know,” purred Sho as she stroked Tye’s head. “That’s why I splurged with the rent money we got and bought you the same one. Now you and your BDFF (Best Dog Friend Forever) have matching flying carpets.”
Tye started sobbing harder with joy, and pulled her sis and her BDFF both in for a group hug.
“How about if we take them for a spin,” suggested Xe as she hopped up on hers. Tye didn’t have to be asked twice.
“Sho, take our picture,” the BFF’s said in unison, before breaking out in giggles.
Off they both flew out the door and across the top of the jungle. They could see King the snake and little Missy the mouse taking a leisurely stroll on the jungle path; lots of beautifully colored birds they didn’t know, as well as Tyeko, their next door neighbor; and various other inhabitants of the jungle. Soon, their growling stomachs urged them to tell the carpets to take them to Hut Canada, where they were hoping for more banana splits. Being mischievious youngsters, they got distracted once they arrived at the hut.
“Hey, Xe, do you want to try jumping onto the roof of Hut Canada with me?” meowed Tye.
Lost in her own thoughts, Xe mused, “I wonder what would happen if I climbed onto Tye’s carpet…”
“Girls!” cried out Sho. “I thought you were mature enough to have your own carpets, but maybe I was wrong.”
Startled, Xe said the first thing that came to mind. “Will you make me a banana split to go? I need to pack my suitcase. It’s a long way to Paris, even with my new carpet,” she explained.
“Paris?” Sho and Tye both exclaimed as the carpets settled softly onto the grass.
“That’s my second surprise,” giggled Xe. “Mommy also said that with my new self-driving carpet, plus me being three whole years old now, that I’m allowed to take a trip. I picked Paris. That’s where Mommy took me our first summer together, and I’ve been wanting to go back and see more of the city.”
While Sho made breakfast banana splits (they had granola sprinkled on top), they all chatted about everything Xe would see and do in Paris. Sho said that they planned on leaving for the country Canada the next day, so they still had some preparations to make. Then the sisters hurridly cleaned up the kitchen while Xe packed her suitcase.
“Give your carpet good directions, and listen to its warnings,” advised Sho.
“Have fun and send us postcards from Paris!” added Tye as she waved bye-bye.
“Text me your new address and I will send them there,” Xe answered with a woofy smile.
With barely a whisper, the new carpet rose from the green grass of Sho and Tye’s lawn. With a course set directly across two continents, Xe headed off to her next adventure.
PART 5: PARIS
CHAPTER 1: ARRIVAL IN PARIS
“I made it to the City of Lights before dark,” thought Xe as her magic flying carpet hovered close to the iconic Eiffel Tower. “La Ville–Lumière,” she thought to herself. “Yes, I must start using the French I learned for when I got a chance to come back here.”
“I’m sure glad I tied my suitcase to my collar,” she continued to muse. “There was quite a bit of turbulance over Turkey. All those big birds must have stirred up the air something fierce. Speaking of turkeys, my tummy’s starting to rumble. “Swirl,” Xe said to her carpet that she had named Swirl, “take me to a cafe to get something to eat, please.” Xe had been taught well, and carried her manners over even to her flying carpet.
“It’s really late for my supper, but I remember that Parisians eat later than we do at home. Hmm, this place looks busy. I bet they have good food. I think I’ll ask if they serve steak tartare — two of my favorite foods in one dish. I love that the restaurants in beautiful Paris allow dogs to dine with the peeps. I might have to ask for some help with the menu if they don’t have what I want.”
As Xe walked into the patio area, a nearby couple stopped her and – with a lovely British accent – the lady asked if she was with anyone. With only a slight hesitation, she admitted that she was in town by herself, doing some sightseeing. At that, the couple smiled and invited her to dine with them, even offering it to be their treat. Of course, Xe thought they were going to share their food treats with her, and was only mildly disappointed when she realized at the end of the meal that they meant they would pay her bill. She did indeed dine on raw ground meat and egg, while often wiping her beard so as to not appear uncivilized. Not wanting to offend anyone, she accepted a very small glass of red wine and spoke as much French as she could remember. Mostly though, Xe lapped a lot of water after her long flight from Tyeland.
That night, Xe slept soundly in a quiet little B&B that her Mommy had booked for her. Her hosts were ex-pats from the U.S. and were excited to hear about her life in Tennessee. When she fell asleep in the man’s lap, he gently carried her to a quiet little room of her own and tucked her into a soft bed where, with a full tumy, she snoozed away the night.
Waking refreshed and ready to see the sights, Xe thanked her wonderful hosts with much tail wagging and promises to give them rave reviews on the Air B&B site. Off went the brave little schnauzer to visit the icon of Paris that she had spotted from the sky the previous evening: the Eiffel Tower.
On the way, Xe wondered about all the people playing in the Seine. Since the day proved to be heating up quickly, she decided to grab her ball from her little rucksack and jump in the water.
She swam up to a man who was all alone and asked, “Vux-tu jouer au ballon?” When he looked at her puzzled, she realized he was also American, so she said, “Do you want to play ball?” He readily agreed, tossing it only a short way. After many swims to retrieve the ball, Xe decided that although she was having fun, she didn’t want to wear herself out in the water. There was so much more to do and see in the City of Lights! She bade him adieu and swam to shore – with her ball.
She soon reached the boulevard around the Eiffel Tower, where she stopped to eat a bit of brunch. All that swimming had made her famished.
Xe bowed her head and gave thanks for her safe trip to Paris, for her new friends, for her Mommy, and for her food. While her eyes were closed, a French Poodle came up to her to see what she was “looking at.”
“Qu’est ce que tu regardes?” inquired the poodle.
Startled, Xe jumped and barely stopped a growl before the poodle could hear it. She covered her reaction by asking the dog’s name. “Comment t’appelles-tu?”
“Je m’appelle Gigi,” she replied in a soft voice. “Et tu?”
“Je m’appelle Xexe,” Xe smiled.
“Gigi et XeXe!” they both exclaimed, and thus began a new friendship.
“So Xena,” said Lucy, “it seems that your story character Xe has a new friend. What are they going to do? You can’t just leave the story there.”
When last we met, Xe had just become acquainted with a lovely French poodle named Gigi. They quickly became fast friends. Gigi offered to show Xexe – as Xe had introduced herself, more sites in her home town, so Xe extended her stay at the Air B&B for an extra night. The next morning over café au lait, avec plus lait, the little schnauzer regaled her hosts with more stories of both her day in Paris as well as her adventures with her BCFF (Best Cat Friend Forever), Tye. Xexe and Gigi had just returned to the Air B&B to prepare for anther fun day together when Xe got a text.
“It’s Tye!” Xe exclaimed. “She’s on her carpet, hovering over Sacré-Cœur. Let’s go!”
Gigi already knew who Tye was from their long talks the evening before. The pair ran as fast as they could to the stairs going up to the summit and on up to the butte Montmartre, the highest point in the city. They only stopped once to catch their breath before reaching the basilica.
“There she is! Here I am, Tye! Down here!” Xe hopped up and down and waved frantically with excitement.
Making a smooth four-point landing, Tye had barely hopped off her carpet when she felt Xe’s arms around her with a big schnauzer hug. They grabbed paws and danced in a hoppy circle with excitement. Tye, in her fancy French beret, suddenly stopped as she saw another dog approach.
Gigi, who had been holding back, shyly approached the happy pair.
“This is my new friend, Gigi,” explained Xe when she finally stopped hopping. I just know you two will become good friends too. She has offered to be my – and now our – tour guide in Paris.”
“Meow, meow, meow! A friend of Xe’s is a friend of mine,” smiled Tye.
“Je suis heureux de vous rencontrer,” responded Gigi.
Tye turned to Xe, and whispered, “Uh, did she just swear at me?”
Gigi, who had very good hearing, said, “No, no, mon amie, that was ma langue français. I will speak your language, English, if you like.”
Having come to that agreement, Gigi offered – in English – to take them to the famous horse racetack, the Hippodrome de Longchamp Moulin. She explained that it is a lesser-know attraction where the locals enjoy losing their money. After paying their 2€ each to enter, they found the best seats, right in front of the track.
Xe, very confident in her running abilities, stated, “You see those horses? They could run faster if they didn’t have men on their backs. I bet I could even beat them in a race right now.”
“Ah, but you could not beat me.” The little poodle said this with such confidence that Xe couldn’t help but challenge her to a race.
As soon as the horses began leaving the track the three friends ran out onto the racecourse to settle who was fastest. Tye decided to let the race be between Xexe and Gigi, taking on the role of “starter.”
“Xe! Stop! You’re running the wrong way!” Tye called out as she tried to get Xe turned around.
“Wee!” exclaimed Gigi. “C’est fantastique! Je vole, je cours si vite!” (I’m flying, I run so fast!)
(A little later) “Wow, quelle fun?” Gigi exclaimed. “I have never before been in a race and I have never before been tossed out of a venue. Vous deux savez comment le vivre.” (You two know how to live it up.)
“I thought you said you would speak English so I could understand you,” complained Tye.
“Je suis désolé, er, I mean, I am sorry,” answered Gigi. “My English is actually very good. I just forget, since I was helping Xéxé practice her French. Now, let’s keep exploring.”
“Here is the Musée Picasso. It is a ‘must see.’” This time, instead of paying the admittance fee, the trio slipped in the dock door as the museum was receiving a delivery– something Gigi would never have done by herself.
“How strange all these paintings and statues look,” mused Xe. “That Picasso dude must have had a really warped mind to come up with all of this. Hey, Gigi, we never got to finish our race. Wanna’ try to catch me?” Xe started running with Gigi close behind. Several statues wobbled, almost tipping over. They stopped and listened at the sound of approaching footsteps.
Tye, oblivious to imminent company, was still thinking about what to do with the big-nosed man in front of her. “Hmm, this doesn’t make a very good scratching post. Maybe I’ll leap onto his head and take a bite out of that huge schnozzle.”
“Hey! You three, what are you doing in there?” a guard asked as he approached. Gigi quickly translated the guard’s French.
“Nothing,” they all said in unison, with wide eyes, ready to flee.
“Sortez!” He gave them all a stern look while Gigi told Tye and Xe that they were being thrown out of the museum.
The friends ran for the nearest exit, trying not to do any damage on their way. They got outside and stopped at the bottom of the stairs, woofing and meowing in laughter.
“That is two times – deux fois – we have been thrown out of somewhere! How fun!” laughed Gigi. “Let us find our next adventure.”
As they travelled through Paris, they came to the pool of water in front of the Louvre. Xe quickly got out her ball and jumped in to cool down.
“Wee! Wait for me!” yelled Gigi. “I have always wanted to do this, but never before had the nerve.” The little French and German-American dogs played ball in the water until – once again – they got thrown out. Tye, not too fond of swimming, watched from the side, and clapped her paws and laughed as they they climbed out of the water. “Here, we will cool you off too,” woofed Gigi as she and Xe shook the water from their hair. “It is getting late,” said Gigi, “and I must go home before Maman wonders what has happened to me. She worries too much.”
“Come on, Tye, we can stay at my Air B&B tonight,” said Xe. “You will like our hosts, and I am sure they will let me stay another night. I have a nice room and big bed we can share. Help me remember to text Mommy to let her know I am OK. She worries about me, too, even though I am a big girl now.”
“Oh, that reminds me,” meowed Tye, “I promised to text Sho when I found you in Paris, and, with all the excitement, I forgot! I’d better do that too.”
And so, another fun day in Paris ended, with plans to meet up the next day.
CHAPTER 3: HALLOWEEN TERRORS
“I’m so glad my Mommy and your Sissy let us stay in Paris,” woofed Xe.
“Yep, even if Sho did send little Missy the mouse to keep an eye on us. As though we wouldn’t notice her hanging around, spying,” laughed Tye.
“I’m also glad Missy agreed to only send good news back to Sho and Mommy when we offered to include her in everything we did!” exclaimed Xe.
“Hey, Missy,” the pair yelled out together, as they were often wont to do. Let’s head on over to the river bank and see what’s going on. The café let us have the night off from tasting food, er, I mean waiting tables, and licking, er, I mean washing dishes so we could enjoy Halloween! They’re so nice there. They even said please, please take the night off, take several nights off. We can text Gigi on the way to meet us there,” finished Xexe.
A short while later, the foursome met up on the bank of the Seine.
“Look at that friendly pumpkin,” observed Tye. What fun we are going to have tonight! I bet we get lots of treats, too!” she added.
“Gigi, will you take a picture of the three of us?” implored Xe.
“This light is quite flattering,” observed Tye.
“Oh, my,” squeaked Missy, “I forgot to smile. And now Miss Mommy and Miss Sho will know I am in cahoots with you two. I’m sorry, Miss Mommy and Miss Sho!”
Later, after nightfall…
“Let’s go to Disneyland Paris,” suggested Gigi. “They always have a big blast for Halloween. It should be tons of fun. And *giggle* maybe we can sneak in like we did at the museum and all those other places we got thrown out of.”
“Poof” said Mickey the Magician. “You’ll disappear if you enter here.”
“Grrr,” growled the pumpkin. “Turn around or you’ll never be found.”
“Come closer,” enticed the witch. “Turn into wood, rot where you stood.”
“Well, we sure didn’t get very far,” grumped Xe. Who knew they would have this elaborate system set up to make you leave if you didn’t have a ticket!”
“Ooo, that was scary,” squeaked Missy the mouse.
“Let’s go find somewhere better,” meowed Tye with disdain.
“I know,” said Gigi, trying to make up for the Disneyland failure. “Let’s go to the Eiffel Tower. It is never disappointing, and it is free.”
The next morning…
“Wake up, my friends,” woofed Gigi. “It’s time to go home.”
“Where am I?” asked Tye. “I felt this terrible sleepiness overtake me and I laid down and fell soundly asleep.”
“We never made it to the Eiffel Tower,” Gigi answered. “You fell asleep, like you said, and Xe went into a stupor. I could not rouse either of you, so I sat here and watched over you both all night to make sure no one played a Halloween prank on you. It was very odd. It was like the pumpkins acted as the poppies did in the Wizard of Oz.”
“I dreamed I was wearing the Cone of Shame, and JenJen Bear came to comfort me,” said Xe.
“Well, I hate to tell you this,” laughed Tye. “Oh, never mind. You’ll realize it soon enough.”
“But I also had an even scarier dream,” said Xe as she began to shake with fear. “Angel Lexi came back as a Vampire Dog…”
“Bwah, ha, ha, ha. I have come… to suck…your blood.” Lexi’s voice could be heard in the distance, moving away from the four friends. “Man, I love Halloween and the Big Guy letting me come back to have some fun!”
As Gigi, Tye, and Xe, with Missy riding on her back, ran as fast as they could toward their Paris abodes, their screams reminded all of the terrors of All Saint’s Eve.
What happened to your story, Xena? You left everybody having a good time in Paris. Are they ever coming home?
Oh yeah, I forgot. But as you can see, I’m back home.
Xena, you were never…
Just go with it for once in your life, will ya’, Lucy? But just to make you happy, let’s find out how it all happened.
THE WANDERERS GO HOME
“Tell me again,” implored Lu, “how was it you lost your magic carpet and everyone still managed to get back home?”
“Well you see, it was like this,” answered Xe. “My magic carpet, the one with the great GPS system and deluxe pile – the one that Mommy bought me – it disappeared Halloween night. The only thing I could think of was that Vampire Angel Lexi took it. Maybe she became mortal for a while after scaring the bejeesus out of us and needed a ride back to the Bridge.”
“We were so scared that next morning that we didn’t even notice it was missing. We had planned to head home the next day. I was going to drop Tye and Missy off at their new home in Canada (the country) and then cross back through the states until I got home to Tennessee. I was concerned no one would be able to understand me with my new French accent, but I figured they would adapt.”
“Me and Tye and Missy were all packed and ready to go when we discovered the carpet was gone. So, of course I texted Mommy to tell her what happened and I would need money for the plane flight home since I couldn’t just go and buy another magic carpet in France. She was not happy and told me I would have to work and save my money.”
“Gigi and I went to the restaurant where we had been working, and would you believe they had hired someone – a human person – to do our jobs. But, they said, the person didn’t get the dishes nearly as clean as we did, so we could have our jobs back. We told them we’d only accept our jobs back if they would hire Tye, too!”
“Seriously?!” Lu exclaimed.
“Yep,” answered Xe. “She needed air fare too, you know. Our great friend Gigi even said she would give us half her wages to help us get home. She was enjoying her dish licking, er, washing job so much, she didn’t care if she got the money or not. Sometimes we switched out and I got to wash the dishes.”
“So that explains why you missed Thanksgiving and Christmas with us,” mused Lu. “I really missed you, even if it meant I got all the special treats. It looks like you got a few treats of your own, though.”
“The job had perks. Anyhoo, we realized that no matter how much food we spilled and had to clean up and no matter how many dishes had to be ‘washed’ it was going to take us ’til this time next year to save enough for plane tickets. After all, we had our daily expenses, too.”
“Like what, Xe” asked Lu. “I’ve never had to pay expenses.”
“There was the room and board, for one,” replied Xe. “Then my hosts fell in love with me and wanted to adopt me.”
“Oh no!” exclaimed Lu. “What about our Mom and Dad?”
“I figured Mommy and Daddy could be my American pawrents, and I could have a Maman and Papa in France. Anyhoo, when they told me that, I got so excited I wet the floor and yelled out, ‘lit et nourriture gratuits!’ That means free bed and food, for those of you Lucy who don’t speak French like me. At that, my almost Maman and Papa looked at each other and said maybe it wasn’t such a great idea after all.”
“So me and Tye, we figured we better find a second job. Gigi suggested we all go apply for work at Disneyland, Paris. Missy, being a mouse, was a shoe-in for Mickey. When no management was around, she would take off her beret and hold it out for folks to drop money in it. You wouldn’t believe how much she raked in every day like that, on top of her salary.”
“Did you know Tye can sing, Lu? She got a job as a character from Frozen. Man, can she meow out a song!”
“The crowds loved her and threw flowers and sardines to her at the end of every performance.”
“What about you, Xe? What job did you get at Disneyland Paris?”
“I got my dream job.”
“I was put in charge of the Character Dining Kitchen as Goofy!”
“Being Goofy was your dream job?”
“No, Lu. Being in charge of the kitchen! OMD, I could have done that forever! I had to taste everything that was made to be sure it was right. The customers kept giving me their scraps, and I learned to catch better. And you wouldn’t believe how much food those people left on their plates when they were done! OMD, OMD, OMD!”
“It must have been hard coming home after all that,” Lu said softly, hanging her head.
“Not at all,” said Xe. “I’m back with my sister, my best friend (besides Gigi and Tye.) Me and Mommy have to work hard to get ready for my Level 3 Freestyle Trial in the middle of May, but there’s still time for you and me to to do what we do best.”
“I love you Daddy. Did you miss me? I’m Goofy in the kitchen.”
“Yes my dear girl, you certainly are,” Daddy answered with a funny little smile. “It’s good to have you home.”