Crittles

Unidentified Flying Melons

by Shawn M. Garrett
Illustrations by Don Cassity

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It was a bright, sunny day and all the Crittles had met on the hilltop.

"I'm glad you could all make it," Lovely Ladybug said as she handed out invitations. "They are for a party to be held tomorrow in honor of King Cob-Ra."

"Let's make this a real bash, guys!" said Funky Frog. "I've got a stompin' band all lined up!"

"No! It's a nice elegant soiree," exclaimed Lovely Ladybug.

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Funky Frog continued, "Whatever you call it, I have a feeling it's going to be a BASH! We need your help getting one of these big watermelons down the hill, for the refreshments. I bet you and Ambitious Ant could come up with a way to cut it in half and turn it into a swimming pool!"

Lovely shook her head, "I was thinking of using it for an elegant water dispenser instead."

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Curious Caterpillar starting writing in his notepad. "Fly over to my workshop and grab this stuff," he said to Daring Dragonfly and Happy Hornet. "Then head over to the zucchini patch. You two are the back up plan, just in case?"

"We don't need a zucchini as a back up plan," said Ambitious Ant. "Just roll that watermelon down the hill!"

"I can push this one right over the edge," said Tenacious, and he did exactly that. Unfortunately Lucky Lizard was on top.

Lucky shouted, "Yahoo!" as the melon rolled down the hill with him running on top. The watermelon sailed right into the Pond. Lucky then shouted, "Hey, what a great ride!"

"Okay, this may be tougher than it looks," said Ambitious Ant.

Spooky Spider said, "Too bad you can't make them float. I was once the assistant to a magician who could make things float in the air. He showed me how to do it, you just have to....."

"That's it! I've got it!" interrupted Curious Caterpillar. "I know what to do."

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Meanwhile, Snappy Snake hung from a tree and watched the crowd below which had gathered to see King Cob-Ra.

"Hi Snappy," Scorchy Scorpion said. "Sorry but I can't let you see King Cob-Ra."

"But I really need to talk to him," said Snappy. "You sssee Central Control gave me a mission this morning. A transfer of top secret paperssss. Howsss about you help me out?"

"Well, all right," said Scorchy. "I'll get him to come out."

Snappy Snake approached King Cob-Ra as he slithered out the door and introduced himself. "I'm Snappy ... Snappy Snake. I believe you have sssomething I'm sssupposed to..."

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Just then Bopping Butterfly fluttered in and interrupted their meeting. "Like, Oh my Gosh! Are you really King Cob-Ra from Serpvania?"

Seeing Lovely Ladybug coming, Snappy quickly hid by blending into the tree.

"Bop, stop disturbing King Cob-Ra, you can talk to him at the party. Come with me Mr. Ra," said Lovely Ladybug.

Scorchy returned asking, "Any luck talking to King Cob-Ra?"

"No luck yet. Try to get King Cob-Ra to meet me tonight in the woods," said Snappy.

"I'll try," said Scorchy.

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Over at the zucchini patch, Daring Dragonfly and Happy Hornet attached the straps they got from the workshop to a zucchini. The two of them buzzed their wings and the zucchini broke free from it's stalk. Suddenly Scratch the farm cat jumped at them. Scratch swiped a claw at Happy. Happy dropped the strap and the zucchini plopped to the ground. Scratch then grabbed the zucchini and disappeared into the meadow with it.

"After her!" yelled Happy.

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Back at the hilltop, the gang had a new slingshot idea for moving the watermelon.

"Okay, now Tenacious, you have to pull the slingshot to that line on the ground" said Curious.

"I don't know about this," said Funky Frog. "It just don't seem natural to be flinging these things all over the place."

Curious replied, "See, the calculation is quite simple. Hmmm, wait, that's a minus ten NOT A PLUS TEN! TENACIOUS WAIT!"

But it was too late. Tenacious had released the watermelon. The watermelon flew off course and crashed through the window of the old barn.

"That was cool, can you sling ME like that!" said Lucky.

"Sorry, that might even be too much for you," said Curious.

"No way man," said Lucky. "If you won't help me, I know someone that will!"

"Letís try it again in the morning," said Ambitious Ant, and they all went home for the night.

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In the woods near the big Oak Tree it was getting dark. Snappy Snake waited in the shadows for King Cob-Ra. Then the King appeared around the other side of the tree.

"We are finally alone Mr. Sssnake", said King Cob-Ra. "We mussst hurry. I have sssomething for you and you have sssomething for me, no?"

"Yesss, that's correct," said Snappy. "I..."

Then, suddenly out of nowhere, Lovely Ladybug came out of the woods. "Oh my dear Mr. Ra, I've been looking all over for you. You must come back to the salon. It just isn't safe out here for a King."

Snappy emerged from the knothole that he leapt into and shook his head. This mission was becoming harder than he thought.

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Back at the zucchini patch, Daring Dragonfly and Happy Hornet watched as Scratch the Cat slept with the zucchini clenched in her mouth.

"Hey, I have an idea," said Daring. The dragonfly zipped right into the cats mouth and quickly grabbed Scratch's uvula, giving the little punching bag a good hard yank!

The cat coughed, spit out the zucchini and the dragonfly, and ran away. Happy Hornet and Daring Dragonfly each grabbed an end of the zucchini and flew away with it.

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Later that same night, Lucky Lizard and Spooky Spider sneaked back to the watermelon slingshot.

"So how did you say the magician make things float again?" Lucky said.

"Just strap yourself to that watermelon marked # 8 and I'll show you," remarked Spooky. Spooky then spun a web around the bottom of the watermelon, waved all eight of her arms and said the magic words, "Magic spider spin your web, make this object float instead!" All of a sudden, the watermelon began to rise!

Lucky shouted, "This is awesome, higher, higher!"

"I knew it would work," Spooky replied.

"Hey how do you make this thing come back down?" Lucky yelled.

"Oh my! The magician never showed me how to do that," whispered Spooky.

Lucky and the watermelon floated up into space until they disappeared from sight.

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Then Spooky saw a space ship that looked like a huge watermelon appear above her. Suddenly, little watermelon seed people began to float down from the space ship.

"Greetings, we are the Seedlings! We have come from a watermelon patch in space because our people are in danger!" said one of the Seedlings.

Spooky was amazed. "Noble being, we have a great need for this beautiful melon. Back on our planet tiny Seedlings are drying out! May we take this watermelon to save the future of our planet?" said the Seedlings.

Spooky replied, "Well, we really need this for a party but it's obvious that you...uh, guys...really need it. Aw, go ahead take it!"

"Many thanks, noble being," said the Seedlings. The bottom of the space ship opened up and beamed up the last watermelon and then blasted off into space.

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Later, out in space the little Seedlings watched from their space ship as a watermelon with a big # 8 and a lizard riding on top zoomed by them on its way back down to earth.

"That's moving too fast to catch," said one of the Seedlings. "What a waste of a good watermelon!"

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Back on Earth the party was in full swing. Snappy Snake hoped he could complete his mission but it seemed impossible with all the people at the party around. Daring Dragonfly zipped around telling everyone how she saved the party by capturing the zucchini. It was certainly a swinging party!

"This is certainly a fine soiree after all," said Lovely Ladybug. "But where is that crazy Lucky Lizard?"

"Well..." Spooky said quietly. Suddenly someone yelled, "Hey what's that in the sky!"

"My goodness...what is it? Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's a...watermelon," yelled Lovely Ladybug. But it was too late.

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The watermelon crashed into the middle of the party, scattering the Crittles everywhere! There sat Lucky Lizard on top of a chunk of the smashed watermelon with a huge smile on his face.

"Man, what a trip!" said Lucky.

There was total silence for a moment. Snappy Snake stuck his head out of the watermelonly mess, and realized that now was his last chance. He zipped over, yanked King Cob-Ra out of the squishy muck and they passed each other the top secret papers - Mission Accomplished!

Funky Frog stuck his head up and looked around with bulging eyes. "See," he chuckled to Lovely Ladybug who was climbing out from under a chunk of watermelon. "Just like I said, this party ain't no swa-ree at all, it's a BASH!"

THE END.







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