Chapter 16: Shilo
It was finally morning, and as promised, Glen, Patti, and Tommy got to work gathering firewood for Grampy.
They set out into the jungle and picked up sticks along the way.
“Just think, we can have an adventure of our own.” Glen smiled happily as he waddled along while carrying his sticks with his wings.
“What adventure would that be, honey?” Patti asked as she too walked with sticks in her tiny arms.
“No doubt it would involve lions, and tigers, and bears.” Tommy retorted, using his only stick as a weapon.
“Oh my!” Glen and Patti replied playfully.
“Just think about fairies and you won't be scared of everything. You know, like the fairies you see in the Nutcracker play we always used to go to.” Glen encouraged as he picked up another stick.
“First of all, it's not a play, it's a ballet put on by professionals. And secondly, it's specifically the Sugar Plum Fairies you're talking about.” Tommy pointed his stick into the air.
Suddenly, he could hear a faint sound coming from the jungle.
“Oh my, I think I hear something. But I can't seem to make it out.”
“Tommy, are you trying to scare us or something, buddy?” Glen asked as he and Patti turned around.
“Nothing dangerous actually. It's more like...” Tommy figured as he looked around until the faint sound became louder, and more clearly.
“Music?” Patti finished the sentence when she dropped her sticks.
Glen looked at the two with a confused look, “What's going on here?”
“Tommy, I think there's something on your back.” Patti pointed when Tommy turned around, only to find a bright pink pixie on his shell.
It had bright pink hair to match the dress and wings, and pale skin.
“Oh my gosh, it must be a Sugar Plum fairy!” Patti shouted excitedly when the pixie flew into the air.
The two looked up into the canopy to find more pixies of different colour flying around.
“What are they lookin' at?” Glen wondered when he too looked to the canopy, only to find no pixies in sight.
“Let dance!” Tommy announced when he stood on his toes and danced to the music, as did Patti.
They were following the pixies through the pathway of the jungle.
“Hey, where do you think you guys are going?!” Glen yelled as he dropped his sticks and hoisted himself into the air.
“Guys! We're supposed to be finding firewood!” the gander yelled as he flew as fast as he could.
Tommy and Patti could not hear him, all they had their minds focused on was the music, dancing, and following the pixies.
Glen continued to fly, “Guys, where are you going?!” he shouted until he unknowingly hit a tree.
“Yep, just like the good old times.” the gander smiled before falling to the grass.
He could still see Tommy and Patti dancing down the path, but he needs to get to higher ground in order to see where they're going.
So he got back up onto his webbed feet and flew into the air.
Up ahead, he found a muddy swamp.
“Oh no, they don't know what they're getting themselves into!” the gander said to himself before flying towards his friends.
“I never had this much fun in years.” Patti said as she continued to dance.
“Me neither darling.” Tommy agreed when he was just one step away from walking into the swamp.
“Glen the gander coming to the rescue!!!” Glen screeched as loud as he could, making the pixies cover their ears, and disappear into thin air.
Patti stopped dancing and shook her head, “What happened?”
“Help!” Tommy cried out as he sank into the muddy swamp.
Glen landed onto the ground, “Tommy, grab onto my tail feathers! Quick!”
The turtle in distress used his remaining hand to grab onto the gander's tail feathers.
“Patti, I need your help to pull him out of the swamp. Grab my feathers!”
Patti grabbed onto Glen's feathers and began to pull.
They used all their strengh until finally, they pulled Tommy out of the swamp.
After pulling him out, Tommy was covered in mud.
“Tommy, are you alright?” Patti asked as she grabbed a leaf to wipe off the mud.
“I think I saw my life flash before my eyes.” Tommy whimpered as he hid himself in his shell.
Glen rolled his eyes and smiled, “Oh, stop being such a drama queen.”
“What happened just now?” the porcupine questioned.
“You two went cookoo and walked right into a swamp.” Glen answered.
“Patti and I heard music play, we saw Sugar Plum fairies, and we danced. How come you haven't heard anything?” Tommy questioned as he slowly popped out of his shell.
“I'm tone deaf, remember?”
Patti and Tommy looked at each other with confusion, then remembered.
“Oh, that explains why you didn't enjoy the Nutcracker as much as we did.”
“I didn't say I didn't like the Nutcracker, it's the music that I couldn't understand.” the gander explained when the two nodded.
“You guys!” Arthur swooped in and landed on the ground.
“Grampy has asked of me to check up on you guys. He's worried about you guys being gone for so long. I'm glad you guys are okay.” the squirrel informed when the four heard rustling coming from the bushes in front of them.
“Brace yourselves, it could be a dangerous animal.” Arthur warned.
“It better not be one of those Sugar Plum fairies.” Tommy whimpered before going back into his shell.
Arthur slowly looked to Tommy with a confused look, “What?”
“It's a long story.” Patti said when the bushes shook again.
They squeezed their eyes shut, bracing for impact.
But then, just when they thought they were going to be attacked by a dangerous animal, the attack never came.
The four opened their eyes to find a young girl sitting in front of them.
She tilted her head in curiousity.
She had a headband around her head with a feather sticking out of the back, and she wore a long beige dress.
She also had purple skin and cat ears.
In her arms, she held a sewn doll.
“Oh...” Patti uttered when the girl backed away in fear.
“Oh no, we're not gonna to hurt you. We're small and harmless.” Glen reassured, but the girl only held onto her doll tightly.
“Hmm...she's a shy one isn't she?” Arthur thought.
“What's your name?” Tommy asked as the young girl looked up at the four.
She was quiet for moment before finally answering, “Shilo...”
“Well that's a pretty name, hun.” Patti smiled.
The girl smiled back.
But at the same time, she had a sad expression on her face.
“Is there something wrong, Shilo?” Tommy questioned, tilting his head.
“Can you please tell us?” Glen also questioned.
Shilo stood up and turned, and waved her arm towards her direction, gesturing the animals to follow her.
“Let's go guys,” the squirrel yelled as he climbed a tree, “We have but a moment to lose!”
He ran on all fours on a branch and lifted himself into the air.
Glen carried Patti and Tommy on his back and lifted into the air, following Shilo through the jungle.
At last, they came to a stop to a view of a cliff.
Shilo uncovered the leaves of a bush while the animals peered at the cliff beside her.
They could see a ship below with people aboard.
Then they saw a line of people walking towards the ship, chained together.
They heard screaming of men yelling at the people, ordering them to walk faster, and the crack of whips thrown onto them as if they were mules.
“Is that your people down there, Shilo?” Patti quried when the girl nodded.
“Get up here you vermins! We haven't got all day!” a familiar voice was heard from below.
Arthur pulled down his goggles over his eyes and turned a switch attached to the goggles to zoom in at the ship.
He quickly sighted who he did not expect to find.
“Oh no,” Arthur shook his head in disbelif.
“What is it, Arthur?” Tommy questioned with a worried look.
Arthur reset his goggles/binoculars to it's original state and pulled them back over his helmet before answering, “It's Blackbeard, Grampy's lifelong enemy.”
“Blackbeard!” The trio shouted in unison.
“You know him?”
“He locked us in a cage and tied the kids in ropes, while Miranda and Miguel hung from a tall mast in chains. We escaped him before we found you guys.” Glen explained.
“Grampy had gotten himself into a lot of skirmishes with that fellow down there throughout his life. The three vamps used to work for him before they joined Grampy.”
“But what's he doing on this island? What's he doing to Shilo's people?” Patti questioned.
“What ever he's doing, he's usually up to no good.”
“We have to get the others before Blackbeard and his goons take off with Shilo's people! They must know about this!” Glen announced as he bent down to let Patti and Tommy get on his back.
“C'mon Shilo, we're going to introduce you to a couple friends of ours.” Arthur smiled as he pulled the goggles down over his eyes and leaped into the air.
The animals flew back to the boat while Shilo followed from behind.
At the entrence of the boat stood both Sam and Annie socializing, while Movan, Marco, and Flea sat around a table playing cards.
“Hey guys! We got an emergency here!” Glen yelled at the top of his lungs to get the others' attention.
“You guys? What are you doing here? I thought you were getting firewood for Grampy.” Movan asked as he placed down his cards and sat up.
“Movan, you aren't supposed to show your cards.” Marco reminded when Movan glared at him.
“Who is she?” Annie asked as she pointed to Shilo, standing at the bottom of the ramp.
“This is Shilo, and she needs our help. We have to get everyone out here right away!” Tommy panicked when Sam placed his hands on the turtle's “shoulders.”
“What the heck is going on?”
“Blackbeard is here! He took her people and made slaves out of them!” Patti chimed in.
“Are you guys sure about this?” Sam asked suspiciously, tilting his head.
“Have we been wrong to you?” Glen began, “I mean when it's important!”
“Quick, we have to get everyone!” Movan said as he ran inside the boat.
There was a few minutes of silence and tension until they heard a symphony of footsteps running towards the exit.
Movan was the first to run out of the door.
Grampy went out second, as he straped a rifle behind his back.
Sonny came out third and so on.
Everyone had their weapons ready to go for a fight.
They gathered around as Shilo shyly walked up the ramp.
“Everyone, this is Shilo. We found her while we were out collecting wood. And she needs our help to free her people from Blackbeard and his band of pirates.” Patti explained.
“Blackbeard's here, eh? Well, looks like I have a score to settle with him.” Grampy smiled as he walked down the ramp.
“What do you suggest we do?” Miranda questioned when Grampy turned to face her.
“We'll plan somethin' when we get there.”
Miranda gave herself a facepalm, “Rule #27: If you attack without a plan, it will possibly end in failure.” she thought to herself as she walked down the ramp.
“Marco, Flea!” Grampy shouted when the two vampires stood at attention.
“I want you two to keep watch over this little girl until we get back.”
Grampy then turned to Movan, “And as for you, you're on firewood duty. Get as much wood as you can and get ol' Selina Rose goin'.”
“I'll lead you guys to where they are.” Arthur announced as he placed his goggles over his eyes once again and shot up into the air like a gun shot.
“Follow that squirrel!” Sonny pointed to the sky as he ran after Arthur, as did everyone else except for the three vampires and Shilo.