Fish Tales


FISH TALES 7 1/2 -- INTERLUDE

 

Authors: Mel & Christy
Pairings: Not really applicable, unless you want the fish info :)
Rating: PG-ish
Disclaimer: Don't own GW or the guys... but the fish, cats and
dog are all ours!

 

[Once again, we're in the onnas' fish room, but for once the light shining from weed-stocked tanks isn't making the air green; it's got a definite blue tinge instead.]

MEL: &%$$#^*(&%$$^&^%$$%&**%$!!!!!

[Or that could just be the swearing.]

GOMEZ: **whoa. if we ever needed proof that humans are a carnivorous species, we just got it. she must eat her offspring with that mouth.**

WING ZERO: **scuttlebutt says they have a different saying, something about `do you kiss your mother with that orifice', but...* *

BIG TREIZE: **the swearing has even more meaning if you can see her expression from this angle. looks like she's about to burst a blood vessel. i wonder if christy can medicate her?**

BIG ZECHS: **i don't know if medication will work. hey, zero? do you know if humans can get popeye disease? what does scuttlebutt say?**

CHIBI-D: **um... guys? has it occurred to you to wonder how come we can understand her? and not just general understanding, as in `wow, mel's pissed off', but specifics, along the lines of `gee, i don't think what she just told the tiger barbs to do is anatomically possible'?**

JESSICA: **you know, chibi-d has an excellent point!**

RASHID: **chibi-d also knows the meaning of the word `anatomically'. i'm more worried about that.**

CHIBI-D: **whoa. dude. you have a point. has my vocabulary just inflated or what? maybe it's because i'm special now!**

TORFRAMOS-THE-FISH: **nah, krashnark and i figured it was more fun if we could all understand the humans... so we fixed it.* *

KRASHNARK-THE-FISH: **so technically it's because we're special now.** *snicker*

[Christy sticks her head into the room, eyes wide.]

CHRISTY: Mel... is something wrong?!

MEL: Wrong? Why would something be wrong?! I'm only trying to move the *&%$^&* tiger barbs and red barbs into the $^**(^% new four-foot tank and they're not $^*(&$ cooperating and if they don't damn well start behaving I'm going to %$&*(% well start squashing them under the ornaments, that's all!

CHRISTY: ...Right. I'll just go leave you to it then, shall I?

MEL: You do that-- aha! Got you, you little bastard! Six down, eight to go!

TIGER BARB #3: **nooooo! aaaaargh!**

----------

[Half an hour later, Mel deposits the various barbs into the new four-foot tank with a vindictive evil snicker.]

MEL: There. Enjoy your new tankmates. I hope they rip all your fins off, you cannibalistic little piranha wannabes!

[The barbs stare in horror at a tank full of most of a fish's worst nightmares... everything except the giant worm (eel) from hell, newts, and the Guppy Curse of Doom. There are compartments on the sides with testosterone-fuelled male bettas staring out hungrily, hatchet-jawed female bettas glaring out from under every leaf, and three uncomfortably familiar-looking sucking catfish lying nonchalantly on the bottom.]

MRS BUTCH: **hello, boys. what took you so long?**

BARBS: **aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!! it's the psycho bitch-fish from hell!!!!!**

UNE: *hmph* **i beg your pardon? that's my title, i believe.**

TIGER BARB #1: **what are you talking about? you're a goldfish! and you aren't even in this tank! why would we give a shit about you? mrs butch is the psycho bitch-fish from hell we've got to worry about!**

UNE: **then why are you insulting the one who can reach you?**

MRS BUTCH: **i have to confess i was wondering that myself...* *

TIGER BARB #1: **ummmm... can i plead insanity?**

MRS BUTCH: **i believe i'll allow it, just this once.**

SANDROCK: **ooooooo. toys!**

[He begins to swim menacingly up towards the nervous school of assorted barbs, but pauses when Tallgeese and Epyon don't follow him.]

SANDROCK: **oi... what's the holdup?**

TALLGEESE: **we keep telling you, don't we?**

EPYON: **enjoy what you've got.**

TALLGEESE: **appreciate the scenery, the peace and quiet and so on.**

EPYON: **and don't be any more of an idiot than you already are.**

TALLGEESE: **that last one may be a bit much to expect, i guess...**

SANDROCK: **well, screw you guys! i've been waiting for this for long enough, i'm going to have me some fun!**

[Spinning around to head for the barbs again, Sandrock finds himself nose-to-nose with... Mrs Butch.]

MRS BUTCH: **i wouldn't do that if i were you.**

[Ominous Western showdown music plays in the background as Sandrock sputters.]

SANDROCK: **wha-- bu-- what are you talking about?! you beat them up too!**

MRS BUTCH: **exactly. nobody messes with my toys but me.**

[Behind the two combatants, there's a hurried consultation between the `toys'.]

RED BARB #4: **i'd rather be beaten up by her than him.**

TIGER BARB #5: **me too. she just takes a bit out of your fin, and only when you do something first.**

RED BARB #2: **yeah, she doesn't lurk behind the filter and lunge out to suck your scales off!**

TIGER BARB #1: **she doesn't chase you all over the tank afterwards, either. well... not unless you really pissed her off.**

TIGER BARB #3: **and you can usually distract her by swimming past something more important than you are. like food, or a bigger fish.**

TIGER BARB #1 (the biggest one): **gee, thanks...**

RED BARB #1: **so, we're agreed? we'd rather have mrs butch than sandrock in charge?**

[The Western showdown music comes to a screeching halt as the smallest tiger barb humbly approaches the pair of posturing fish in the middle of the tank and nudges Mrs Butch's tail. Somehow, if any of the watching fish were familiar with old Western movies (which they aren't), and if he had anything remotely resembling a sombrero to carry (which he doesn't), his behaviour would be recognisable as the `Ai-Senor-the-bandidos-have-raided-our-VEEllage' pose.]

TIGER BARB #8: **um... mrs butch... could we have a word with you?**

MRS BUTCH (dubiously): **yeeeesss...?**

TIGER BARB #8: **we, um, took a vote, and we'd much rather have you in charge of the tank than sandrock. so... er... please beat him up and we'll be your cheering squad?!**

[In the background, the rest of the mixed school of tiger and red barbs begins to dance-wiggle and wave bits of greenery in their mouths.]

BARBS: **yay mrs butch! go mrs butch! woo-hoo!**

MRS BUTCH: **...i don't believe this.**

TIGER BARB #8: **believe it mrs butch! when it comes to a choice between you and sandrock, even we can work out the lesser of two e--ummmmmmmmmmm...**

[He goes even more glassy-eyed than fish normally are for a moment, then restarts the sentence carefully.]

TIGER BARB #8: **...even we aren't dumb enough to make the mistake of choosing him.**

MRS BUTCH (dryly): **nice save.**

TIGER BARB #8: **thank you. i am very small and beneath your notice. please don't kill me.**

MRS BUTCH: **not right now. there's a sucking catfish requiring my attention at the moment, I believe.**

SANDROCK: **damn straight! what the hell do you think you're doing, ignoring me to talk with those idiots when we've got a fight on--**

[Down at the bottom of the tank, Epyon and Tallgeese wince slightly and shake their heads as Mrs Butch headbutts Sandrock through three stands of waterweed and into a rock.]

SINATRA: **that looked like it hurt.**

[The barbs edge nervously away from her at first, but despite her being a betta, Sinatra _is_ small, female, cute, and inoffensive-looking.]

RED BARB #2: **um, yeah. stuff like that usually hurts.**

SINATRA: **really? i've never had it happen to me. if it hurts, why do you do stuff that makes people do it to you?**

TIGER BARB #6: **rampant opportunism, usually. that's how we ended up in here, anyway.**

SINATRA: **oh?**

TIGER BARB #8: **uh, it might not be the best idea to tell--**

TIGER BARB #6: **we kinda sorta got carried away and ate a couple of fish in the last tank we were in. mel put us in here because she said everyone in this tank could handle us.**

SINATRA: **you got carried away?!**

TIGER BARB #8 (wretchedly): **we're related to piranhas. we can't help it.**

SINATRA: **hmph. i never get `carried away'.**

[Tiger Barb #6, who is nearly as big as Tiger Barb #1, has been drifting closer and closer to Sinatra and eyeing her tail with a certain... considering expression during this.]

TIGER BARB #6: **i like getting carried away. and i think mel was wrong.**

[Tiger Barb #6 takes a swift sideways chomp at Sinatra's tail, only to find that it isn't where it was when he started to bite. The next thing he's looking at is a fishy face that, while still recognisably Sinatra's cute li'l blue-eyed white features, is scary as hell. Her gill covers are flared, her mouth is gaping, and she's heading for him looking like she wants to rip his tail off about a millimetre behind his gills.]

TIGER BARB #6: **mommy!**

*****BREAK*****

Portions of this production have been edited to protect readers from exposure to excessive violence.

*****END BREAK*****

[Mrs Butch whacks Sandrock into the gravel one last time for luck, turns around, and sees... nobody.]

MRS BUTCH: **...eh?**

[Sinatra swims out from behind a leaf, looking smug, and barbs begin to peek out one by one.]

TIGER BARB #8: **what happened to not getting carried away?!* *

SINATRA: **that wasn't `carried away'. that was `justified retribution'.**

RED BARB #5: **whatever. where'd he go?!**

SINATRA: **i think i hit him a little hard the last time. he's stuck on the tank lid.**

TIGER BARB #6: *wheeze* **not stuck!** *wheeze* **hanging on!**

TIGER BARB #1: **dude! how?!**

TIGER BARB #6: *wheeze* **cupped fins!** *wheeze* **saw a goby do it once.** *wheeze* **learn fast when you have to.** * wheeze* **are you finished, ma'am?!**

SINATRA: **hmm. that would depend.**

TIGER BARB #6: *wheeze* **on what ma'am? ...can't breathe.**

SINATRA: **are you going to try that little trick again?**

TIGER BARB #6: *wheeze* **no ma'am... really can't breathe...**

SINATRA: **oh, very well. you're off the hook for now, so you can get off the ceiling as well.**

[There's a splash as the barb lets go of his sucker-type grip on the glass lid of the tank and drops back into the water, drifting gasping to the pebbles.]

MRS BUTCH: **hmm. sinatra?**

SINATRA: **yes ma'am?**

MRS BUTCH: **eight point two for effort. nine point three for execution. nine point nine five for style. you have done well, padawan.**

SINATRA: **thank you ma'am. and may i compliment you on your placement of the unconscious catfish?**

[The other fish look over to where Sandrock is lying dazed on the gravel, next to a large twisted piece of weed-covered driftwood and a big rock with a hole in it. There doesn't seem to be anything special about his location... until shadows move under the driftwood and in the hole, and the two biggest, bristliest bristlenose catfish any of them have ever seen stick their noses out.]

COMMODORE NORRINGTON: **what's this then? a pirate?**

SEVERUS SNAPE: **looks disreputable enough to me.**

TIGER BARB #1: **holy shit! you-- wha-- ha-- how-- you guys are bigger than mrs butch!**

RED BARB #4: **bigger than tallgeese!**

TIGER BARB #8: **bigger than sumo!**

BARBS: **oooooooooooooooo...**

[Sumo, the giant clown barb in the two-foot tank who has never yet been heard to say anything to anyone, blows a quiet bubble.]

MRS BUTCH: **oh, get a grip! they are not bigger than sumo!* *

TIGER BARB #8: *cough* **sorry... sorry... it was kind of a comparison error. we're, um, used to bristlenose catfish being smaller than us. bristlenose catfish that are lots bigger than us are, uh, kind of trippy.**

TIGER BARB #6: *wheeze* **smaller, hell.** *wheeze* **we're used to them being tiny.**

RED BARB #5: **do you guys take steroids or something?!**

SNAPE: **we're adults, you moronic examples of piscine genetic failure.**

NORRINGTON: **small bristlenoses are still young. obviously.**

[In another tank:]

CHIBI-D: **dudes... you're kids?!**

NATAKU: **we're precocious.**

SHENLONG: **obviously.**

[Back in the four-foot tank:]

NORRINGTON: **in any case, if you're quite finished...?**

MRS BUTCH: **yes, go ahead.**

SNAPE: **you first, norrington.**

NORRINGTON: **my thanks.**

SANDROCK: **whuzzaa...?**

NORRINGTON: **hold still. this won't hurt any more than it does when you do it.**

SANDROCK: **whu? nghaAAAAAAAAAAARGH!!!**

[The barbs all flinch away as the giant bristlenose plonks himself firmly down on top of Sandrock and starts sucking his slime off.]

SANDROCK: **eeeyowowowowowowowowowowowow!!!**

RED BARB #3: **ooo, that's gotta smart.**

SNAPE: **well?**

NORRINGTON: *hmph* **bad. muddy, thick, and no complexity of flavour at all, barring a slight woodiness up near the head.**

SNAPE: **well, it's not as if we expected him to be a gourmet's delight.**

NORRINGTON: **true. true.**

SANDROCK: **ow! ow! get off me, you-- ow!**

SNAPE: **can't. you have another five minutes of this treatment coming. it's not as if we want to slurp your disgusting goo, so shut up.**

SANDROCK: **what?! --ow!**

NORRINGTON: **this is your punishment for disturbing the peace. you started the fight, so...**

SANDROCK: **no fair! i lost it too!**

SNAPE: **and one would hope you have enough brains to learn from the experience, but it's doubtful.**

EPYON (snickering): **judging from past events... no.**

TALLGEESE: **sorry, guys. he's hopeless. we've talked to him ourselves, but--** *shrug*

NORRINGTON: *sigh* **wonderful. could you at least get him to rub himself with algae before he tries anything spectacularly stupid in future? unlike you lot, we actually prefer the vegetarian option to snacking on our tankmates, so if he could just season himself before we're forced to carry out the sentence...**

SANDROCK: **if you morons think i'm going to do anything to make me taste nicer when you suck my slime off--!**

TALLGEESE: **we'll take care of it.**

SANDROCK: **you traitors! just you wait until-- aargh! owowowowow!**

[It's a good thing that Snape and Norrington are so big and heavy, because it takes all their heft to hold Sandrock down while they suck a good percentage of his slime off. As soon as they let him go, he tears off to beat up Epyon and Tallgeese... who proceed to beat _him_ up, then roll him up in shredded waterweed before handing him back to the bristlenose catfish for 'disposal'. Again.]

 

---end---

On to Fish Tales 8 - Heero

Back to the Safe House

 

 

 



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