Fast Food Fairy Tale, Part Twenty-Three


Disclaimer: As the title implies, fast food will be involved (health food nuts, you have been warned!). Many restaurant franchises are personified as characters in this story; some are good guys and some are bad. If you happened to be employed by any of these chains, please know that your character’s role is not a reflection upon the quality of your employer. In short, this is just a silly little story that I have been writing for the amusement of friends-try not to take it too seriously…and please don’t sue me…

~Chapter 30: Checkmate~

Little Caesar dreamt that he was flying. He could feel a sense of weightlessness and the breeze that ruffled his hair and snapped at his toga. That’s strange, he thought. He had no recollection of falling asleep or even of going to bed.

Why was he dreaming?

It all had something to do with chickens, though he wasn’t sure why. Lots of chickens. Swarms of them swooping out of the darkness. The roar. The ferocious clucking. The sensation of running, and then blackness. That was all part of the dream too, wasn’t it? That he was attacked by those flying menaces?

FOOMP!

Little Caesar felt himself hitting the ground.

I must have fallen out of bed, he thought a little sluggishly. That’s rather embarrassing. It was a good thing that he was alone in his tent…

He opened his eyes.

He wasn’t in his tent, and he wasn’t alone.

In fact, he was surrounded.

Little Caesar quickly sat up to take in his surroundings. He was in camp, but not his camp. Gradually, his eyes rested upon the stern continence of the Burger King. At his side was Prince Carl. The combined armies of Dryvthru formed a circle around the one-time leader of the rebellion.

“It was nice of you to drop by,” the King said wryly.

“How…?” Was all that Little Caesar could get out. Beside him, he heard groaning. Jersey Mike, Dunkin, and Krispin were also regaining consciousness.

“Aw man,” grunted Jersey Mike, rubbing his head. “What hit me?” He glanced around and took in his predicament. “What…Aw, ya gotta be kiddin’ me!”

Dunkin and Krispin merely whimpered.

“Our chickens did us the favor of transporting you here,” continued the King.

“I hope you had a chance to enjoy the trip,” added the Prince. “It may be the last thing you men enjoy for quite some time.”

As if to punctuate the point, a large, and rather mean-looking, chicken suddenly fluttered down into the circle and began to strut menacingly. The four villains jumped.

Little Caesar wasn’t quite sure, but he could have sworn that he heard the chicken growling.

Fast Food Fairy Tale, Part Twenty-Two


Disclaimer: As the title implies, fast food will be involved (health food nuts, you have been warned!). Many restaurant franchises are personified as characters in this story; some are good guys and some are bad. If you happened to be employed by any of these chains, please know that your character’s role is not a reflection upon the quality of your employer. In short, this is just a silly little story that I have been writing for the amusement of friends-try not to take it too seriously…and please don’t sue me…

~Chapter 29: Stalemate~

It wasn’t quite the happy reunion anticipated as the Burger King, followed by In-N-Out and Portillo, entered Prince Carl’s camp. Even the recent defeat of Jersey Mike’s flank attack was met with subdued celebration. After everything that had happened in the past several days, Wendy’s capture preserved the frustrating stalemate between the two armies. While the Burger King and In-N-Out joined Prince Carl, Colonel Sanders, Popeye, and Asiago in the command tent, Portillo, with Sonic at his heels, sought out his old friends.

He found them all sitting silently around a camp fire: Baskin, Robin, Papa John, Arby, McDonald, Big Mac, and Jimmy John. Sonic’s joyous barking roused them from their gloomy vigil. For a moment, the dark mood lifted as Baskin and Robin embraced Portillo, Arby slapped him on the back, and Jimmy John happily and repeatedly shouted “I’m Jimmy John!”
After catching up on each other’s stories, the group sat around by the fire once more. Sonic found a comfortable spot on Robin’s lap and soon began snoring softly.

“So,” said Portillo, hesitant to ask the question, but wanting to know the answer, “how did Wendy get captured?”

“We believe,” replied Papa John with a sigh, “that someone in this camp was under Little Caesar’s employ.”

“The guard at her tent hasn’t been seen since Wendy’s disappearance,” Big Mac added. “We think it might have been him.”

“Who was this guard? How did he manage to sneak in like this?”

“All we really know for certain,” said Baskin, “is that his name is Dunkin and he is a local baker. We don’t know how he managed to get himself chosen to be Wendy’s guard.”

“I reckon he was just in the right place at the right time when Prince Carl was lookin’ for volunteers,” Arby added. “Besides, his only job was to keep Wendy in the tent. It don’t take a highly trained soldier to stand by an entrance.”

“But didn’t anyone notice Wendy being…?”

“Look, boyo,” McDonald cut in, slightly exasperated, “things were pretty riled here in camp when Jersey Mike made his move to our left. People were running everywhere. It was chaos for a while. If we had any notion at the time that it was all a ruse…”

“I’m sorry,” said Portillo quickly, holding up his hands. “I wasn’t accusin’ anyone of anything! It’s just, well…you know.”

McDonald flashed a sad smile.

“Aye boy, aye, I know. I reckon we’re all a’feelin’ a bit on edge at the moment.”

There was a moment of silence, before Portillo spoke again.

“So what do we do?”

“What can we do?” Robin asked as she absent-mindedly stroked the sleeping Sonic. “Little Caesar was fooled once by a rescue attempt. He won’t be fooled again.”

Everyone fell silent once more, deep in their own thoughts as they listened to the cheering popping and cracking of the fire.

Suddenly, Jimmy John stood up.

“My friend Wendy is in trouble,” he announced with a determined look in his slightly-crossed eyes. “I will go he’p her.” With that, he stalked off. The others exchanged surprised glances.

“What does he mean he’s going to help her?” Portillo directed his question to McDonald and Big Mac. “What is he planning to do?” Both men shrugged in bemusement.

“I can’t say for sure,” McDonald said. “I’ve never actually known him have a plan before.”

~

“We do have a deal, right?” Dunkin asked. He and Krispin had dropped in at Little Caesar’s command tent, where the pizza dictator and Jersey Mike were seated at the table busily planning their next move. In the middle of the tent, Wendy also sat, still tied to her chair and gagged.

“What?” Little Caesar asked distractedly, looking up from a large map.

“Our deal? We bring the girl and you help us start up a bakery franchise?”

“Of course we have a deal,” Little Caesar said, glancing back down at the map. “I am a man of my word after all.”

“Ah, so you’re the guys who snatched the girl, huh?” Asked Jersey Mike, jerking his thumb toward the squirming Wendy. “Bet she was a handful.”

“Actually,” said Krispin, “she slept like a baby the whole time.”

Dunkin laughed.

“And,” Mike continued, turning to Little Caesar, “why didn’t you tell me you had these guys hidin’ out in Prince Carl’s camp?”

“What can I say?” Mumbled Little Caesar. “I am full of surprises.”

“We met Little Caesar a while ago,” Dunkin spoke up. “He was taking over a pizza parlor next door to our bakery. Krispie and I…”

“Krispin!” Krispin hissed.

Krispin and I were rather interested in Little Caesar’s business strategy. We agreed to lend him our services in exchange for his help in expanding our business. When he found out that Prince Carl was gathering an army in Hardeeshire, it was his idea to plant us in their camp and to await further instructions.”

“When we got word that the boss wanted Wendy,” Krispin continued, “Dunkin volunteered to be her guard while I got a wagon ready. One military distraction, one drugged donut, and here we are!”

“You guys,” Jersey Mike grinned and pointed a finger at them, “you guys are all right!”

“Thanks!” Dunkin beamed.

“So what’s the plan now, L.C.?” Asked Jersey Mike. Little Caesar placed a finger on the map, indicating an island some distance from the shores of Dryvthru.

“We sail for the island of Quiznos and set up our operations there. It’s a small place and we’ll have it under our control in no time. Then we bide our time until we can launch another attack on Dryvthru.”

“And how ‘bout this little ball of fire?” Jersey Mike gestured to Wendy who scowled and tried to cuss him out through her gag.

“She comes with us. Once we are safely established on Quiznos, we’ll permit her to return.”

Wendy rocked in her chair and attempted to cuss out Little Caesar.

“Or we can do everyone a favor and just set her adrift on a raft.”

~

The sun was beginning its descent when Little Caesar, along with Smashburger, stepped onto the battlefield.

“Sound the trumpet,” Little Caesar commanded, gesturing to the instrument in Smashburger’s huge hand. Obediently, the large man put the trumpet to his lips and blew. The noise that he produced was similar to that of a goose being strangled.

“Good heavens!” Cried Little Caesar, turning to Smashburger in dismay. “Is that the best you can do?”

“Sorry boss.”

“Again, please.”

Smashburger’s next effort sounded like a dying moose.

“I selected you because I thought you had the biggest set of lungs in camp. Are you not able to produce one clear note?”

“Sorry boss.”

“So you’ve said. Can you at least whistle?” Smashburger put two fingers in his mouth and gave off an ear-piercing HWEEEEET! Little Caesar clapped his hands to his ears.

“Hey youse guys over dere!” Smashburger bellowed toward Prince Carl’s camp. “Listen up! Da boss got somethin’ ta say.”

“Uh yes, thank you Smashburger,” said Little Caesar, dropping his hands from his ringing ears.

“Hey, no problem.”

By this time, the Burger King and Prince Carl had stepped to the front of their lines.

“Is all the noise you’re making an indication that you wish to announce your demands?” The Burger King called out dryly.

“Yes,” replied Little Caesar, puffing out his chest in an attempt to look authoritative, “and my demands are these…”

~

“So did they agree to everything?” Asked Dunkin.

Night had fallen and Jersey Mike, Dunkin, and Krispin were sitting around a small campfire outside of the command tent when Little Caesar returned.

“They wanted some time to consider the proposal,” replied Little Caesar, finding a vacant camp stool and taking a seat.

“What’s to consider?” Krispin asked.

“Nothing, really. I believe that they are stalling until they can come up with some sort of brilliant rescue plan.”

“Yeah,” Jersey Mike snorted, “good luck with that one.”

Having learned his lesson, Little Caesar had recently relocated his command tent to the center of the army camp. Anyone wishing to rescue Wendy would first have to penetrate through a ring of extremely vigilant and very hostile soldiers.

“I gave them one hour to make a decision,” said Little Caesar. “I promise you that we’ll be sailing to Quiznos before morning.” The others nodded in satisfaction.

At first, none of the four paid any attention to the commotion occurring at the northern end of camp. Some of Jersey Mike’s men were gathering and pointing out into the darkness. Something was out there, and whatever it was, they were prepared to fight it.

Suddenly, a single torch flared to life. The men could make out only a silhouette holding the torch; a tall, thin silhouette. The mysterious person stood unmoving and silent. More and more men were adding to the growing group. Some shouted out insults and threats, but the figure was unresponsive. Finally, Little Caesar, Jersey Mike, Dunkin and Krispin pushed their way to the front of the crowd.

“Is this supposed to be the rescue attempt?” Scoffed Jersey Mike. “Gimmie a break!”

“If your plans were to sneak in and burn down the camp,” Little Caesar called out to the stranger, “I’m afraid that you have failed quite badly.”

“Hello,” the torch-bearer spoke at last. “I’m Jimmy John!”

“Who the devil are…?” Little Caesar began to say.

Just then, Jimmy John lifted his torch high. He kept it up for a long moment, then swept it down in a fiery arc. Suddenly, there was rustling and movement in the darkness around him. Several black shapes rose into the night sky; then dozens; then scores. Soon the air was full of flapping creatures. Dramatically, Jimmy John raised the torch high and pointed at the camp and the now-anxious group of men.

“Go,” he said.

~

From inside the command tent, Wendy heard distant, muffled noises. She also heard Little Caesar and his henchmen responding to the commotion and moving away from their campfire. If ever there was a time to escape, she thought, now was the time. With her fingers, she awkwardly scrabbled at the knot binding her wrists together behind the back of the chair.

The noise outside slowly began to change. It seemed to be growing louder. She continued to work feverishly at her knot. She was just able to grip a portion of it with her fingertips.

Now she heard shouting and people running. There was also another noise Wendy couldn’t identify, a sort of a roaring sound, and it was coming closer.

The knot started to work loose.

Now people, many people, were rushing past her tent. She couldn’t quite make out what they were yelling about because the roaring, rushing sound was growing even louder. Was it some sort of freak wind storm? She didn’t want to stick around to find out.

Finally, the ropes around Wendy’s wrists fell away. She ripped the gag out of her mouth, spat, then began to work on the ropes around her waist.

POOM!

Wendy sat bolt upright. Something had hit the back of the tent.

POOM! POOM!

What was going on?

POOM-POOM-POOM-POOM-POOM

Then Wendy heard the sounds of ripping canvas. She screamed and covered her head as the command tent was instantly shredded all about her. Furniture tumbled and splintered. The noise was unbearable. Wendy covered her ears, closed her eyes and continued screaming. At least she thought she was screaming; she couldn’t hear.

Then it was over, and all was silent.

Well, not entirely silent. She could hear movement around her. Wendy slowly opened her eyes and observed the carnage. She found herself in the middle of a darkened, ravaged camp. Not a tent remained standing. Every campfire had been extinguished. Supplies, gear, and dry-cleaned suits, still in their plastic coverings, were scattered about. A few people lay moaning over the grounds.

Then there were the chickens.

Before Wendy could even process what had just happened, a chicken waddled up to her, fluttered up, and landed in her lap. It cocked its head and peered at her with its beady eyes.

BUK?

Wendy didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.

So she did both.

Fast Food Fairy Tale, Part Twenty-One


Disclaimer: As the title implies, fast food will be involved (health food nuts, you have been warned!). Many restaurant franchises are personified as characters in this story; some are good guys and some are bad. If you happened to be employed by any of these chains, please know that your character’s role is not a reflection upon the quality of your employer. In short, this is just a silly little story that I have been writing for the amusement of friends-try not to take it too seriously…and please don’t sue me…

~Chapter 28: Plan B~

“Nonsense!”

“Little Caesar must be behind this.”

“It’s just not possible!” Prince Carl said in exasperation. “How on earth could he enter our camp unnoticed, find Wendy in her tent, and drag her away without drawing attention to himself?”

“I…I don’t know,” Baskin admitted, wringing her hands in anxiety. “Perhaps he had inside help.”

“That might explain Jersey Mike’s recent maneuver,” Colonel Sanders spoke up. “In the confusion of shifting our troops to meet the new attack, someone could have spirited her away.”

“If all of this is true,” the Prince replied, “then we have a problem.”

“He’ll kill her!” Cried Robin. “He’s mad enough to do it!”

“No, he won’t,” replied Sanders. “At least not until he gets what he wants.”

“Which is what?” Asked Baskin as she wrapped her arms around the trembling Robin.

“What all cowards want,” said the Prince. “To save his skin.”

~

Wendy’s first conscious thought was “What did they put in those donuts?” The question, however, was quickly lost in a blur of jumbled words and images in her mind. Her next thought was “Donut is kind of a funny word. Heh heh…Donut. Do-nut. Doooo-nuuut…” She giggled to herself. Why was she thinking about donuts?

“She’s waking up.”

That voice sounded familiar, but did she actually hear it or was it in her head? Donuts were in her head. Heh heh…donuuuuuts…

“What is she laughing at?”

Another voice; one that Wendy didn’t recognize. Just how many people were in her tent anyway?

“What did you put in those donuts?” Asked the first voice.

“They were laced with tryptophan.”

“Huh…”

“Tryptophan…” Wendy murmured dreamily and giggled again.

“I’ve never seen anyone react to tryptophan like that before,” the first voice said.

That voice.

Wendy’s mind was slowly chugging back to life. She heard that voice recently. In her tent? No, outside of it. Someone talking outside of her tent. Was it the guard? What was his name?

She felt herself lurch suddenly.

“Mind the ruts, Dunkin,” chided the second voice. “Let’s try to get to the camp with our innards intact.”

Dunkin.

The guard’s name was Dunkin.

“All right, Krispie. All right.”

“And you can quit calling me ‘Krispie’ while you’re at it. We’re not six years old anymore.”

“Oh, fine…Krispin.”

“I mean, how is the boss going to take us seriously if we’re calling each other ‘Dunnie’ and ‘Krispie’ all the time?”

“All right, all right. Point taken.”

The boss? What were these two talking about? Wendy wondered. And why was her tent moving? She cautiously opened one eye. Above her was canvas, but it was the stretched canvas of a covered wagon. To the front of her through the puckered opening of the canvas, she saw the backs of two men on a bench leading a pair of horses. Things were now starting to click into place. Tryptophan. Dunkin. Donuts. Kidnapped!

“I should go back and tie her up before she fully wakes up,” said Krispin.

“Why? We’re almost at the camp,” replied Dunkin.

“But what if she runs?”

“Not a chance. Nobody runs on Dunkin.”

Wendy closed her eye and tried to think of a plan. However, before she was able to come up with anything, she felt the wagon slow to a stop. Seeing no further point in feigning sleep, Wendy opened her eyes and sat up. She heard footsteps outside of the wagon, then the back of the canvas covering was opened to reveal Dunkin, Krispin, and standing in front of them with a malicious grin on his face, Little Caesar.

“Wendy, we meet at last.”

~

“Burger King!”

The Burger King reigned to a stop and held up a hand. The remainder of the army followed suit. A hundred yards before them stood a very large man wearing a suit and sunglasses.

“Are youse the Burger King?” He boomed, directing his question to the mounted monarch.

“No,” sneered In-N-Out from the right of the King, “he’s Jack-in-the-Box. Who do you think he is?”

After a pause, the slightly confused man hollered back, “Well, are ya or ain’tcha?”

“Sharp as a tack, that one,” In-N-Out muttered. Portillo, on the King’s left, let

out a snort of laughter.

“Yes,” the Burger King replied, trying to stifle his own grin, “I am the Burger King, and to whom am I speaking to?”

“Smashburger.”

“He didn’t ask what you do for a living,” Portillo hooted, “he asked for your name!” This time, In-N-Out let out a guffaw.

“Gentlemen, please,” said the King in mild exasperation. “This interview would go much quicker if my two court jesters weren’t adding to the conversation.”

From the back of Portillo’s horse, Sonic let out a happy yip.

“That goes for you too.”

“My apologies, your Highness,” said In-N-Out unable to repress a smile.

“Yeah, sorry,” Portillo echoed.

Sighing, the King turned back to Smashburger.

“Do you have a message for me?”

“Yeah, I does. Little Caesar says don’t come no farther unless ya want the girl ta get hurt.”

“Girl?” the King started in confusion. “What girl?”

“The red head with the big mouth.”

“Our scout told us that all of the hostages have been rescued,” In-N-Out said to the King. “This has to be a trick.”

“You’re bluffing!” The Burger King called out.

Smashburger grinned menacingly, then stepped to the side. Hidden behind his bulk was a chair in which the struggling Wendy was bound and gagged. From a coat pocket, he produced a menacing-looking potato peeler. With his other hand, he grabbed a fistful of Wendy’s hair and pulled her head back.

“I ain’t messin’ ‘round here. Youse guys make a move,” he growled and placed the potato peeler to Wendy’s exposed neck, “and I kill her.”

The Blind Date


I don’t go on blind dates as a rule.

However, my friend begged me to go on this one. His girlfriend had a friend who was new in town and was a great person and could I do them all a favor, and yada yada yada.

“You’ll like her,” my friend said, “Bekah says she’s quirky.”

Quirky? That should have been warning enough to back away from this venture, but like a good-hearted schmuck, I decided to go through with it.

On the designated evening, I arrived early at the restaurant, took a seat on a bench outside the entrance and waited. I tried to remain cool and detached, but truthfully, I was feeling a little nervous. I was given a brief description of what she looked like so I would be able to recognize her. At least from a physical standpoint, she sounded all right.

I heard my named called. I glanced up and there she was.

She was quite beautiful; there was no question about that. She also seemed to exude a sense of calm self-assurance that I found immediately appealing. After the obligatory introduction and small talk, we moved toward the restaurant entrance. This date might not be a disaster after all I thought as I opened the door and stepped aside to let her pass. Only she didn’t pass. She remained rooted before the entrance with a look of incredulous pity on her face.

“Um, after you,” I said, a bit confused by her reaction. She heaved a sigh and shook her head.

“You really don’t need to hold the door open for me.”

“Er,” I replied. “It’s no trouble.”

“No, what I mean is…some women don’t like having doors opened for them.”

“They…they don’t?”

“Some people find the custom outdated and demeaning to women; that we’re not able to open doors for ourselves.”

“I…was just being polite,” I replied, a little stunned at this turn of the conversation.

“Oh, I know,” she said with a small smile. “I know you meant well, and don’t worry, I’m not offended.” She chuckled. “You see, where I used to live, almost no one does it. I keep forgetting that it’s still done in other parts of the country.”

Quirky.

“All right,” I said, not quite sure of what to do next, “would…you like to open the door?”

She laughed again.

“Okay, now you’re just being patronizing.”

“Ah. So…how do we get inside the restaurant without offending anybody?”

“You’re funny.”

We managed to enter and a waiter led us to a table.

Without thinking, I started to walk around to her side of the table in order to pull out her chair. She gave me a strange look.

“What are you doing?”

“I, uh…oh, nothing. I was just, uh, never mind.” Sheepishly, I returned to my side and sat down. I picked up my menu and scanned the items.

“So,” I said, glancing up, “are we going Dutch on dinner?” My date looked up from her own menu and pursed her lips. “Look,” I continued, sensing trouble, “I just figured that since you are of…an independent state of mind that you would prefer that I not pay the entire check. I mean, I can pay it, but…” She raised a hand.

“I understand what you mean, and yes, I would like to split the check. I just wish you had used a different term.”

“Different term?”

“‘Going Dutch.’ That’s a bit offensive, don’t you think? It implies that the Dutch are cheap.”

“You clearly haven’t met my Dutch grandparents,” I mumbled.

“What?”

“Never mind.”

In awkward silence, we resumed our study of the menu. Mercifully, the waiter arrived. Wanting to make the most of what was quickly becoming a train wreck of a date, I decided to splurge on a steak dinner. By reading my companion’s face, however, this was clearly the wrong choice.

“I’m a vegetarian,” she explained.

She started by ordering a salad, and then went ingredient by ingredient, asking the waiter if the vegetables were fresh and organic. If the waiter wasn’t sure, the offending produce had to go. By the end, her salad consisted of a plate of spinach.

“Is that it?” I asked. “Won’t you still be hungry?”

“Yes,” she admitted, “but I’ll have a clear conscience, and that’s more important.”

Our meals came and I carved into my steak with obscene pleasure. My date picked through her spinach and heaved a sigh. I paused with a forkful of meat halfway to my mouth.

“You seem like such a nice guy,” she said. Now what, I wondered as I set my fork down.

“It depends on who you ask,” I said, trying for humor.

“Doesn’t it bother you that you’re eating a fellow living being?”

“I’m pretty sure this is a cow.”

“That’s what I mean. A poor, defenseless cow was murdered for human consumption. If it were me, I would feel so guilty.”

I looked at my half-eaten piece of meat, still delightfully drenched in steak sauce, and I came to a decision. I shook my head.

“Nope,” I said, picking up my fork, “not feeling the guilt.”

She heaved another long-suffering sigh.

“It seems,” I continued with deceptive casualness as I cut away another piece of steak, “that we are at a Mexican standoff.”

“What?”

“Oh, pardon my French! I’m not trying to get your Irish up or anything.”

“I cannot believe how culturally insensitive you’re being!”

“I’d like to abide by the rules of political correctness, but, shoot, it’s all Greek to me!”

“Enough already!”

“All right, all right…” I threw my hands up in mock surrender.

“Look, you may think this is all a joke, but there is a serious problem in this country with the discriminatory, derogatory, racist, sexist, elitist, outdated, unenlightened terms and phrases that plague our modern language. We must all strive to wipe them out and condemn those who continue to spew such filth!”

“And freedom of speech?” I inquired, continuing to blithely poke at the hornet’s nest.

“Everyone is entitled to freedom of speech,” she replied with an air of dignity, “as long as they don’t offend, embarrass, or verbally injure another living being.”

“Is sarcasm on that list?”

“Possibly.”

“Then we better change the subject.”

More awkward silence ensued. I finished my meal and debated on whether I wanted to hang around for dessert. I had my eye on a piece of German chocolate cake, but I wasn’t sure if it was worth the lecture. At last, I decided to give the noble art of conversation one more try.

“So…what sort of things are you interested in?”

She then proceeded to give me a lengthy list of the organizations she was involved with; environmental protection, animal rights, civil rights, women’s rights, politic activism. She had a finger in every pie.

“That’s pretty impressive,” I said, “you sure keep busy.”

“Yeah, but it’s worth it. So, what are you interested in?”

“Football.”

She waited a few moments in silence, apparently waiting for me to continue with my own list of activities.

“Football, and…” she prompted.

“And that’s about it.”

“I see,” she said rather coolly. I could tell she wanted to say more, but she held it in.

“Yeah, I like football; playing football, watching football, talking about football, thinking about football…”

“Yes, thank you. I think you made your point. I suppose you have a favorite team?”

As a matter of fact, I did have a favorite team. Growing up in Washington D.C., there was only one clear choice. Boldly, I told her this. Then she exploded.

The Redskins?!”

“Check, please!”

Fast Food Fairy Tale, Part Twenty


Disclaimer: As the title implies, fast food will be involved (health food nuts, you have been warned!). Many restaurant franchises are personified as characters in this story; some are good guys and some are bad. If you happened to be employed by any of these chains, please know that your character’s role is not a reflection upon the quality of your employer. In short, this is just a silly little story that I have been writing for the amusement of friends-try not to take it too seriously…and please don’t sue me…

~Chapter 27: Bad News, Good News~

The scout’s head ached. It also didn’t help that Little Caesar and Jersey Mike were screaming at each other at the top of their lungs. He reached back and gingerly touched the large lump that had formed on the back of his head. He hadn’t the slightest idea of who had hit him. He remembered grabbing hold of the dancing girl, and the next thing he knew, he was sprawled on the ground with a throbbing pain in his cranium. The girl had vanished and the scout had no idea how long he had been knocked out; perhaps an hour? Despite his misery, he had staggered up and moved north, determined to locate the Burger King’s army. He didn’t have far to travel. No more than a mile into his walk, he heard a faint rumbling. Locating a nearby tree, he climbed it and peered out through the branches. And there they were. The scout figured that if he ran back to camp with the news, Little Caesar would have less than an hour to prepare for the new threat.

Needless to say, Little Caesar did not take the news well, nor did Jersey Mike for that matter. As the scout sat nursing his wound, the two leaders stood over him, yelling and pointing fingers.

The battle against Prince Carl’s army was proving to be another stalemate. Despite Jersey Mike’s initial quick strike, their opponents were holding their own. News of Silver’s capture had eventually filtered back from the battlefield just before the scout’s appearance.

“We’re toasted, man!” Hollered Jersey Mike, throwing up his arms. “We can’t fight two armies!”

“We are not giving up!” Little Caesar hollered back.

“Can I go lay down?” Asked the scout.

“What else are we gunna do?” Jersey Mike fired back, ignoring the scout.

“We fight to the last man!”

“Whoa, whoa, whoa! What’s this ‘last man’ garbage? I ain’t sendin’ my men out on some suicide mission.”

Your men?”

“Yeah, my men! I don’t see anyone out there wearing one of those dresses…”

“It’s a toga! How many times do I have to explain this to you?”

“Ya know,” muttered the scout miserably as he slowly slid out of his chair and curled up on the floor, “I think I’ll just take a nap right here.”

~

“Well, I see that you two haven’t killed each other,” said Prince Carl cheerily as he entered the command tent where Colonel Sanders and Popeye were looking over maps of the surrounding area.

“We’ve declared a truce for now,” replied Sanders dryly.

“One battskle at a time,” chimed in Popeye.

“That’s the spirit!” Said the Prince, patting both men on the back. “Now, what have you come up with?”

“It’s quite simple, really,” Colonel Sanders began, laying the map he was holding flat on a long table. “Although we were caught by surprise by Jersey Mike’s initial push, it’s clear that our army is an even match for them without the addition of Captain Asiago’s and…” Sanders paused and sighed before continuing, “…Popeye’s men.”

Popeye and Prince Carl shared a look and a grin at the Colonel’s concession to calling his son by that name.

“Please continue,” prodded the Prince.

“Yes, of course,” said Sanders. “Our plan is to split our newly arrived forces and to have them attack both flanks of Jersey Mike’s army. They can travel through the woods on either side of the field, making their movements unseen until the last moment.”

“And then we releaske the chickens,” added Popeye.

“I was wondering why you hadn’t sent the Chic-Fil-A in earlier,” commented the Prince.

“They did their job well yesterday,” Sanders replied, “but the element of surprise wasn’t really there. After the first wave, our opponents could see them coming and prepare defensive measures, such as they were. We hope that holding off the chicken attack today will lead them into a false sense of security.”

“Once them suited scallywags are a’fightin’ on the flanks,” Popeye continued, “the Chic-Fil-A will be a’goin’ along the front, and me ladies will attacksk from the sides.”

“Well, um…well said,” said Colonel Sanders, only slightly wincing at his son’s butchered grammar.

“An excellent plan!” Prince Carl beamed.

“My son deserves much of the credit,” Sanders said. “I must admit, he has proven to be quite the tactician.”

“Like father, like son,” replied the Prince.

“Thanks Pappy,” said Popeye in some surprise. He couldn’t remember the last time he was complimented by his father.

“There may be hope for you yet,” Sanders said with a nod. So much for compliments.

“Whatsk that suppose to mean?” Popeye retorted in annoyance.

Before the Colonel could respond, the camp outside the tent erupted with noise.

“What on earth?” Prince Carl said, exiting the tent along with Sanders and Popeye. All around them, people were wild with celebration.

“What has happened?” The Prince called out. Suddenly, Asiago appeared at his side.

“Good news, Sire! The scout has returned. Your father’s army will be on the field within the hour!”

~

“It’s a stupid idea,” said Jersey Mike, as Little Caesar paced about the command tent.

“It isn’t as if I had all the time in the world to come up with a better plan,” Little Caesar replied.

“It ain’t gunna work.”

“Consider the alternative. Are you that eager to surrender?”

Jersey Mike shrugged.

“I don’t wanna, but…”

“All I’m asking you to do is to create a diversion. I’ll take care of the rest.”

“The King’s army’ll be here in a half an hour. You won’t have time.”

“As long as you and your men do your part, I’ll have plenty of time.”

“You’re crazy,” muttered Jersey Mike shaking his head in exasperation.

“Think positive, my good man,” said Little Caesar with forced cheerfulness. “Think positive.”

“Okay, I think you’re positively crazy.”

~

Something odd was happening.

The battle had been going on continuously all morning, but then unexpectedly, Jersey Mike’s army pulled back from the fight. Perhaps they had discovered the Burger King’s approach and were preparing to retreat. However, instead of leaving, Jersey Mike’s army began to reform their lines. Prince Carl was notified, and he, Colonel Sanders, Popeye, and Asiago arrived at the front lines to observe the movements. The lines of suited men were now in formation. Suddenly, with a barked command, the troops did a right face and began to march towards the forest on the left side of Prince Carl’s army, their familiar chant of:

“Fuggetaboutit!”
“Fuggetaboutit!”
“Fuggetaboutit!”

resounding through the clearing.

“They’re flanking us,” said Colonel Sanders. “We need to alert our men in the woods.” After waving down a passing soldier, he sent him off with the warning.

Prince Carl turned to Asiago. “Are your troops prepared?”

“Well, yes,” replied Asiago worriedly, “but not for the entire Jersey Mike army to come at us.”

The Prince next turned to Popeye.

“Change of plans, I’m afraid. Can you send your troops around to the left to join with Asiago’s?”

“Aye aye,” said Popeye, saluting and quickly departing.

“I’ll get back to my men too,” added Asiago, turning to leave.

“This is clearly Little Caesar’s final gasp,” Colonel Sanders said.

“Indeed,” replied Prince Carl. “And they clearly have no idea what is waiting for them in the forest.” He let out a relieved sigh.

“I shudder to think what would have happened if Jersey Mike had tried this before Asiago and my son arrived. We owe a lot to them.”

“We owe a lot to a great many people,” agreed the Prince, patting the Colonel’s shoulder, “and you among them.”

“Prince Carl!”

The Prince and the Colonel turned around to see Baskin and Robin running toward them.

“What is it?”

“She’s gone, Sire!” Robin panted.

“Who?”

“Wendy! She’s not in her tent!”

The Prince sighed again, this time in exasperation.

“I should have known that things were going too well. What did she do now, drug the guard? So help me, if she thinks…”

“The guard is gone too!” Baskin blurted.

“What?”

“We went to pay Wendy a visit,” Robin continued, “and there was no one there!”

“She’s not in camp?” Asked Sanders.

“We’ve checked everywhere,” said Baskin. “We’ve asked everyone. No one has seen her or the guard. Prince Carl, I think she has been kidnapped!”