Friday, August 24, 2012

MANIC KIN

MANIC KIN

     "The City of Townsville!."

     The man in Artystuff.com's shipping department was filling an order written in crayon on a sheet of paper.

     "It looks like a little girl wants an artist's mannikin...'

     He walked past rows of shelves, finally finding where the artists' mannikins were kept. He bent to grasp one, but the one next to it leapt forward and landed on the floor with a plop.

     "Huh?... I guess this box really wants to go somewhere fast. Well, okay, it's courier time for you, pal."

     A week later -- 

     A courier was carrying a package to the Utoniums' front door.

     "It's here! It's here! It's here!".  Bubbles was jumping up and down in delight.

     The Professor signed for the package and handed it to Bubbles.

     "Bubbles, I'm proud of you! You're one step closer to becoming a professional artist!"

     "Thanks, Professor!". She flew to her bedroom with the package.

     Blossom and Buttercup had to dodge flying paper and cardboard as Bubbles ripped the package open. At last she was holding the figure in her hands.

     "It's mine! It's mine! It's all mine!'

    "Pretty slick!", Buttercup had to admit.

     "Um, if you two don't mind, I'd like a little solitude as I make my drawing..."

     "Oh, sure...", said Blossom.

     "Yeah, we'll just go... scrub the toilet or something", added Buttercup. 

     They left.

     Bubbles giggled. She floated over to the dresser drawers and set up the figure.

     "Hmmm... let's see... I think I'll make it Ms. Keane writing on the chalk board..."

      She posed the figure's right arm. Then she picked up a pad of paper and her box of crayons and floated over to the bed. She sat down.

     "Huh?"

     Both of the figure's arms were hanging down.

     "I could have sworn..."

     She floated back to the figure and reset the arm.

     "There!"

     She floated back to the bed, picked up the pad, and turned to the figure with a big smile on her face. She opened her eyes -- and saw that both of the figure's arms were hanging down. 

     "Hey, there's something mighty peculiar going on..."

     She floated up to the figure and gave it an accusing glare.

     "What's your game? I paid a lot of my allowance to get you, why don't you behave?"

     She posed the arm, but it immediately dropped down. 

    "I smell Him behind this..."

     She gave the figure a few gentle shakes. Now its hands were in front of its face as if crying or afraid.

     "Sigh... okay, if it's a crying drawing Him wants, it's a crying drawing Him gets..."

     She floated over to the bed, sat down, and started drawing.

     She tried to force a smile, but her mouth sagged. She labored at the drawing, scrutinized it, resumed drawing. She stopped to look at the crayon in her hand, felt somehow that she should feel guilty for doing what she was doing, but continued. These were the very same hands that had made so many lovely drawings... and her eyes were the same eyes that had seen so many beautiful things... The figure on her paper looked heartbroken... hopeless. She kept drawing, trying to cheer up the unhappy figure, but the drawing kept getting darker and darker...

     Blossom and Buttercup were in the kitchen enjoying marmalade sandwiches. Bubbles floated in. Her face was ghastly, gaping, frozen.

     "Good heavens, Bubbles!", gasped Blossom. 

     "Let me make you a sandwich," offered Buttercup.

     Blossom poured her a glass of orange juice.

     "This'll pick you up."

     Bubbles spoke weakly, "The horror, the horror..."

     Blossom asked, "What on earth went on in there?"

     Bubbles answered, "My mannikin... Him did something to my pretty little mannikin... I can't make happy drawings with it."

     "Aw, throw the darn thing away", commented Buttercup, rather rudely.

     "But it's mine... I love it... I can't let Him spoil it."

     "Is there anything we can do to help?", asked Blossom.

     "I know one thing," said Buttercup, "Put that thing in the basement, so we can sleep in privacy."

     Bubbles agreed.

     Days passed and Bubbles left the mannikin in the basement. She started to cheer up, although one time Ms. Keane said, "Okay, class, it's time to make a drawing," and Bubbles leapt up in fright and punched a hole in the ceiling.

     She visited Townsville Art Museum and tried to see how artists dealt with unhappy subjects. It seemed that artists often chose shocking or disturbing subjects, but she didn't really see anything that could be called unhappy.

     Finally the Professor told Bubbles that maybe Him could make the mannikin unhappy, but it was still Bubbles who chose who the mannikin was supposed to represent. Why not, he said, make a drawing of -- Him.

     So Bubbles set about making a drawing of the evillest of evils -- Him. She made sure she had plenty of black and red crayons, and set about with a passion.

     Outside the bedroom Blossom and Buttercup paced back and forth like expectant fathers. Hours passed. The Professor brought them some pizza he had ordered. At last a happy Bubbles emerged, triumphant.

     "Good grief, Bubbles!", exclaimed Blossom.

     "That drawing is almost... well, it's almost gag-provoking! It's horrible! Him looks utterly wretched!", said Buttercup.

     Then there came a horrible wailing sound like an air raid siren. A horrified Him appeared. 

     "You can't do that to me! I'm an immortal being, I deserve respect!"

     "Do you want the drawing?", asked Bubbles.

     "Only so I can hide it!"

     "Very well, it's yours -- if you promise to undo the spell you put on my mannikin!"

     "Oh, very well! The spell's undone."

     "Here's your drawing."

     Him pouted a huge pout. "I don't really look like that, do I?"

     "Ask Mr. Quackers", said a confident Bubbles.

     Him looked uncertain. He vanished.

    "All right , Bubbles!", shouted her sisters.

     The Girls shared happy smiles. Somehow the mannikin seemed to be smiling too.

The End





    


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Powerpuff Girls fanfiction, also posted at fanfiction.net as rayb07

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From a part of the world that produced Donald Sutherland. Solemn. Victorian. A Bob Newhart world with a smug minority and a rate of childhood poverty matched only by Toronto. I survived. Sort of.