“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.”
“Tryptophan…” Wendy murmured dreamily and giggled again.
“I’ve never seen anyone react to tryptophan like that before,” the first voice said.
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.”
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.”
“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.”
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?”
“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.”