A Hero For Mypos’s Sake
Written By: Lauren
Cannon: One year after "Vice King", approximately the end of the 3rd season
Rating: PG (beware the evil villains!)
Summary: Like any good villain, Eriki returns. King Ferdinand calls on Balki & Larry to help get Eriki removed from Sceptosian power.
Disclaimer: It’s at the end of the fic. If it were here, it’d give away too much. *evil laugh*
* * * * *
The apartment door flung open and Balki came charging in. Larry looked up from his seat at the counter and watched Balki run over the couch.
"Balki, what did I tell you about running on the furniture?"
Balki nearly slammed to a stop at the counter. "Not to do that?" Larry nodded. "But, Cousin, look what come in the mail." He plopped down a plain envelope with only his name written on it and a return address in Mypos.
Larry frowned. The last time they’d received an envelope like that, he was kidnapped the next day. "Please don’t tell me this is from the Myposian government."
"How did you know?" Balki asked. "Did you read my mail?" He turned the envelope over and opened it. The envelope had already been opened, meaning Balki knew of its contents already.
"Spare me the dramatics, Balki. Are they asking you to be their Vice King again?"
"Of course not, do’n be ridiculous!"
Larry sighed. "Good."
"But it is from King Ferdinand. He says that Eriki was bailed out by some friends from Sceptos and that he is being hailed as the Sceptosian Vice King," Balki said.
"What exactly does this have to do with us?"
"King Ferdinand believes that he can get Eriki out of Sceptosian government, even though most of them are crooked anyway."
"I though you said one time that all of the people in Sceptos were crooked in some way," Larry interjected.
"Well, yes, but not usually the government. They tend to just... overlook everything," Balki corrected.
Larry nodded. "Kind of like our government sometimes. Still, what does this have to do with us?"
Balki leaned on the counter top. "King Ferdinand wants to prove that Eriki will do anything to keep himself in power and to gain power in Mypos. The King wants us to help."
"How? Do we stand around in the streets of Mypos waiting for him to drive by in a carriage and nab us?"
"I sense some sarcasm, Cousin."
"Nooo," Larry said, rolling his eyes. "Balki, I don’t want to be used as bait for a trap. That man is dangerous. I’m still surprised I got out of the situation with only a flesh wound. I still have the scar, too, you know."
Balki stopped him from showing it to him. "Cousin, we’ll be doing Mypos a great thing, and you can finally see my home country."
Larry paused before replying. "You won’t let this go anytime soon, either, will you?"
"Not unless we’re on the next plane, boat, and hike to Mypos."
"I know I’m going to regret this. Okay, we can go help them."
Balki smiled. "Thank you, Cousin! I’m going to pack." He ran off to his room.
Larry remained at the counter. "Yay," he commented dryly. He had a bad feeling about this situation.
* * * * *
Mypos was truly a beautiful country. At the moment, though, Larry would have been able to appreciate it better if the carriage ride wasn’t so bumpy. He shifted next to Balki for the twentieth time in only fifteen minutes.
Larry leaned closer to Balki. "Just where exactly are we staying? If we ride in this carriage for much longer, I won’t be able to sit down for a week."
"Cousin," Balki began, as he put an arm around Larry’s shoulders, "look around. Isn’t it pretty?"
"Balki, it’d be prettier if my butt wasn’t so sore from all the bumps in the... road."
Balki withdrew his arm from his cousin’s shoulders and shrugged, turning in the opposite direction.
Larry rolled his eyes and shifted again. He looked out ahead of them and finally saw a village come into view. He hoped this was where they were staying... or atleast this was where they’d get off the carriage.
Balki leaned forward and spoke to the driver in rather rushed Myposian. Larry’s brow arched at the speed his cousin spoke in. He couldn’t catch all of what Balki said. He picked up a few words, but didn’t understand the meaning of what he said.
The carriage entered the village and stopped at a small brick home. Actually, every building in the village was a small brick home.
"And only the royal family has indoor plumbing?" Larry snidely commented, taking note of the obvious moderness of the homes.
"Of course, Cousin," Balki replied, not taking the hint in Larry’s comment. Balki jumped out of the carriage, followed by a slower-moving Larry.
"This is it?" Larry asked, stretching a little and trying to work out some of the soreness.
Balki grabbed his wrist and pulled. "I want to give you the tour!"
"Balki--!" His cousin pulled him through the front door where they stopped just inside.
Inside, the home was simple: a fireplace with a cooking area next to it, two hammocks against the far wall with a window between them, a door on the wall to the left had a cut-out of a moon on it, and a picnic table sat in the middle of the room.
Larry was snapped out of his viewing of the layout of the house by Balki sighing. He turned to him.
"It reminds me of home," Balki commented.
‘Probably because your home looks exactly the same as this,’ Larry thought. "It’s very... nice."
"I’m glad you like it, Cousin." Balki moved farther into the room, and didn’t notice the look Larry gave in response.
Larry got the feeling that Balki might start reminiscing, and they’d never get started on the real reason they’d gone on this trip. He decided to ask the main question on his mind: "So, what exactly do we do now that we’re here? Do we go searching for Eriki? Set a trap? ...Wait around for him to find us?" He didn’t want to have to tell Balki that he really just wanted to go back home to Chicago, especially since they’d just arrived.
"King Ferdinand wants to gather some men to lend us some hands. When they’re ready, one of them will come to us."
Larry nodded. "We wait around for him to find us." He walked over to the picnic table and sat on the bench so he was still facing Balki. "We only took two weeks of vacation, you know? Well, I took two weeks of vacation, you used up all your sick days."
"And some of yours," Balki corrected, earning a surprised glare from Larry. "I promise you we get home in two weeks. For now, I can show you the rest of the village and--"
"Balki, I need to rest. I’m sore and didn’t sleep very well on the plane." He glanced over at the hammocks and turned back with a worried look. "I just hope those don’t make me more sore than I am now."
"Okay, Cousin, we can rest for a bit," Balki said, then pouted.
Larry shook his head. "That won’t work."
* * * * *
By the time Larry’s eyes blinked open, it had gotten dark outside. He ran a hand over his face, trying to get rid of the remnants of sleep. What really woke him up was a sudden potent smell. He bolted upright too quickly and the hammock rolled, taking him with it, then unceremoniously dropping him to floor. Larry groaned, eased himself up on his elbows, and glanced around the room.
Balki continued on with what he was doing. Larry assumed it was making dinner, but he wasn’t completely sure considering the smell. "Balki, what is that you’re making and that... smell?"
"Ding ding mahk muud," Balki answered quickly, "but what you smell is the sour turnip I’m boiling for the horse that pulled our carriage."
Larry made a face. "Is it supposed to smell like that? I think it’s causing lack of oxygen all the way over here."
"Cousin, what the matter with you is? All you do since we got here is complain."
"Well," Larry shifted to prop his chin up in one palm and drum his fingers on the ground, "it could be because we’re looking for a guy who kidnapped me last year, and we have no idea of what we’re doing."
"You worry too much, Cousin. Eriki do’n even know we’re here," Balki said, then went back to his cooking.
Larry continued drumming his fingers and frowned. "I’ll bet he doesn’t," he mumbled.
* * * * *
Later that evening, Balki gave Larry the tour of the village and were currently on their way to King Ferdinand’s abode.
"So, the King doesn’t live in a castle?" Larry questioned.
"No, it actually partly resembles an amusement park, and he lives in a stone home not unlike the ones in the village," Balki explained.
"He’s certainly got alot of privacy," Larry commented glancing around at the open land.
They continued on, passing an acre with grazing sheep. Balki walked up to the low wooden fencing and leaned over, beckoning one of the sheep to come to him.
Larry stood behind him, watching with his arms crossed over his chest. "Balki."
A sheep scampered up to Balki, who petted the sheep’s head in return, then the sheep turned and went back with the rest of the flock. Balki turned back to Larry. "Cousin, I had to say hello."
"And I would just like to get to see the King before morning."
The guys continued on in silence and finally reached what was indeed an amusement park with a decent sized building next to it and a smaller building that looked like the homes in the village.
Larry pointed out the larger building. "I though you said King Ferdinand lives in the small stone home. Who’s place is that?"
"That’s where the King runs the country. We can take that tour tomorrow," Balki replied, headed toward the smaller building. They walked up to it and stopped in front of the door.
"Do we knock?" Larry asked.
"Cousin, you cannot just knock on King Ferdinand’s door." Balki paused, before letting rip a "Hey, King Ferdinand? Balki is here!"
Larry made a face while checking his ears. "Balki, if you lost your voice, I think it’s in my ear."
Moments later, the door opened, and Balki dropped to the ground in greeting. "Your Majesticness."
Larry rolled his eyes, but turned a friendly look to the King. "Good evening, King Ferdinand."
Ferdinand nodded a greeting to Larry, understanding the ‘American’ way of greeting, then turned to Balki who remained on the ground. "You may rise, Balki, my friend."
Balki stood and hugged the King, who motioned them inside. Balki’s face lit up. "Oh, Your Superfluousness, I love what you’ve done in here."
"Thank you, Balki," Ferdinand replied, "but I believe we have business to take care of." He led them into a room made up to be an office and motioned for them to sit. "Please sit. First, I would like to thank you for helping Myposian government. With Eriki in power in Sceptos, the Great Debate has not been going as smoothly as in the past."
"The Great Debate?" Larry repeated.
"The Great Debate is where the governments of the Tri-Island area meet together and talk over ideas to better the countries," Balki explained.
"And since Eriki has been going to the Debate, nothing has been accomplished because he goes against everything the rest of us agree on," Ferdinand said, then added, "It’s also been said that during every debate something from one of the palaces is stolen. We are the only ones who have not had something stolen."
"When is the next Debate?" Larry asked.
"Tomorrow night and we believe that something will be stolen," Ferdinand answered.
"Do you mean we get to have guard duty?" Balki asked, excitedly. Larry turned a questioning look to him, but he didn’t see it.
"How can we have guard duty if we don’t know what will be stolen?" Larry queried.
Ferdinand paused a moment before replying, "Exactly."
Larry groaned and held his head.
"Your High and Mightiness, we will do our best," Balki confirmed.
* * * * *
The next night, the decently sized governing house was dimly lit, bright enough that Larry could see Balki gawking over every little artifact and painting.
They had taken the grand tour earlier in the day, and Larry made sure he paid good attention and considered which items could possibly be stolen. Watching Balki now, he considered wandering around without his Mypiot cousin. He paused a moment. "Balki?"
Balki stopped his ‘oohing’ momentarily and turned, "Yes, Cousin?"
"I’m going to check the second floor," Larry said, standing. "I’ll be back in a few minutes."
"Okay, Cousin," Balki agreed and went back to the artifacts he had been ‘ahhing’ over.
Larry left the room and headed down a hallway towards the grand staircase. He gave a half smile upon seeing the waterslide opposite the stairs. He glanced around the bottom floor before ascending the stairs. If there was only dim lighting downstairs, it was downright dark on the second floor.
Granted, Larry was not fond of the dark and, unfortunately, thanks to Balki, even the girls knew that. He’d been wanting to get over his ‘loathing for darkness’, as he called it. He only wished the girls knew of his current wandering around in the dark.
Larry felt along the wall for a lightswitch once he got to the top of the stairs. He walked slowly along the wall, feeling it to find that elusive switch. "Oh, come on..." he muttered, not finding one. His nerves were practically starting to stand on end... or was that the shorter hairs on the back of his neck?
A door knob brushed the palm of his hand, causing Larry to let out the breath he hadn’t realized he was holding. He tried the knob and found it open. He opened the door slowly and peeked inside first, squinting to see what the room was. Despite the tour from earlier, his brain was starting to run on its own from uneasiness and he wasn’t thinking straight.
Again, Larry ran a hand along the wall, feeling for a lightswitch. Finally, his hand brushed over one and he flipped it, washing the room in light that was hardly brighter than the one downstairs. Somehow the thought of his eyes getting worse thanks to this terrible lighting came to the front of his mind.
He blinked and looked over the room, finally recognizing it from earlier. It was a generously sized room, with a desk, couch, and a few chairs, enough for several people to have a meeting. Larry tried to remember who used this office, but couldn’t come up with it. He stepped fully inside the room and closed the door after him.
This room offered several lint paintings, more than Larry really cared to know about, but were considered important enough to be stolen. He finished taking a lap around the room and stopped in front of the door. His eyes landed on the desk that sat in front of him. He had purposely saved it for last. It was very modern, possibly imported from Greece. Larry ran his fingers over the dark wood, noticing just how smooth and polished it was. He was astonished just how modern some aspects of this country were and how not modern other aspects were.
The chair that he had ignored as he passed it the first time made him gasp. Not only was it soft, but it was genuine leather. Larry couldn’t pass up this opportunity and sat in the chair. It was even softer than it felt when he ran his hand over it.
"Oh, my Lord..." He couldn’t help it. Just sitting in this chair, at this desk, he felt important. His curiosity got the best of him, and he tugged on one of the drawers. It opened quietly, and he squinted inside it first, then sat up again to reach across the desk for the lamp that sat on it. He clicked the switch and found that this little lamp had more wattage to it than any of the other lights in this building so far. Larry pulled the lamp forward and went to rummaging through the files in the drawer.
He finished the current drawer and moved to the next one, rummaging through this one also. He did the same with all of the drawers. He frowned upon finding them all unlocked, even though it gave him something to do. Larry sat back, gazing around the office once again. He wondered if this could be the targeted room. If it was... he decided he’d rather not be there when the burglary occurred.
It was bad enough that he and Balki were the only ones in the building. He went to turn the door knob, but it wouldn’t budge. Larry’s brow arched, and he tried turning it using both hands. Nothing. He swallowed hard. Someone had locked the door from the outside. That meant the burglar was already there! He grabbed onto the door knob again and fought against it with all he could. The door still wouldn’t budge.
Larry let go of the door knob and decided to take a running start at it. He backed up to just in front of the window and made a run at the door, shoulder first. Just before he hit the door, he remembered that the door opened in, not out. He slammed into the door hard and slumped to the floor, holding his left shoulder, and muttered, "Dammit." He wasn’t thinking, he was panicking. The two went hand in hand for him. He glanced around the office again from his new vantage point on the floor.
His gaze landed on the desk once again. That’s when Larry remembered seeing a key in the top middle drawer. He rolled his eyes and got up, still holding his shoulder. He tried shaking it off, but it hurt too much moving it. He reached the desk, pulled the drawer open, retrieved the key, turned off the desk lamp, and went back to the door. He put the key in and turned it, hearing a satisfactory *click*.
Larry turned the knob and made his way back out into the hall, turning off the lightswitch before leaving the doorway. He inched his way back down the dark hallway, not only feeling uneasiness now, but also the throb from his shoulder. He reached the top of the staircase and looked toward the bottom floor first, before descending the stairs. Seeing that it was clear at the bottom, he left the staircase and headed back toward where he’d left Balki.
Now, Larry had a queasy feeling in his stomach. Something was wrong, moreso than just a robbery. He returned to the foyer where he had left Balki and found his Myposian cousin no longer there. He felt around the wall for the light switch he knew was there and, after a few moments of fumbling, he found it and clicked it on. This light proved better on his eyes, but didn’t help in making his stomach any better. He didn’t like this one bit. Where could Balki be? Did he chase after the robber? Was he hurt somewhere...?
Larry’s brain went on tilt at the thought. If his cousin was hurt, or worse, he’d never forgive himself. He shouldn’t have left Balki; they should’ve stayed together downstairs. But, Larry just had to get away if even for--he glanced at his watch--twenty minutes? He didn’t think it had been that long.
He continued through the foyer and moved into the library. He had to admit, this place looked a little too much like that house they used for the movie "Clue", it was unsettling. He half expected to find bodies in every other room and one outside the front door. Larry let out a sigh and told himself to find a new favorite movie when they got back to Chicago. If we get back to Chicago. He hated the thought that he might be returning alone.
The library was just as dark as the rest of the building. He felt around for another light switch. He was still amazed they had electricity, but considering how modern some of Mypos was, it didn’t surprise him. Larry found the library empty, also. He still wasn’t even sure if anything had been stolen, all he knew was he hadn’t found Balki yet.
Maybe Eriki stole... No, he wouldn’t kidnap Balki. He didn’t even know they were there. Larry doubted that it was even Eriki who had been in the building, or at the very least he wasn’t the one to lock him in the office upstairs. He continued on to the conference room. The queasiness in his stomach was now joined by a sinking feeling. There was only one more room before he returned to the front foyer, and he’d already been in there when he came down the stairs. Larry doubted Balki would’ve gone upstairs as there would’ve been a light on in the hall.
He took in and held a breath upon entering the doorway to the conference room. He felt around for the light switch, and swallowed hard before flipping it. Still no Balki, but he did find out what had been stolen: the tapestry that hung on the back wall.
Larry was sick to his stomach. He headed toward the front door as fast as he could and left the building, leaving on all the lights he’d switched on, and headed for Ferdinand’s small stone home next door. He skidded to a stop at the door and pounded on it for all he was worth. The door opened and Larry nearly fell inside.
Ferdinand gave him a surprised look. "Larry, what the matter is?"
"Balki... the tapestry..." Larry couldn’t catch his breath. So, this is what hyperventilating feels like. "Gone," he finally choked out.
The King’s face fell. "What happened? You both were supposed to be watching." He paused. "No, nevermind. I will get my best guardsmen and send them out to find Balki and the stolen tapestry. And you need to rest."
Larry shook his head wildly. "No, I’m not... I have... to find him."
"Okay, then, I’ll get my guardsmen and you can go with them to Sceptos. Until they get here, you rest," Ferdinand offered in compromise.
Larry nodded and staggered inside. He flopped heavily on the couch while the King went to his phone. His brow lowered, remembering Balki had said once that there was only one phone booth on Mypos. King Ferdinand’s must be new.
He listened while the King spoke in rushed Myposian to whomever was on the other end. Larry leaned forward, hanging his head. He still felt like he was going to be sick and now his head was starting to pound like a kettle drum. Balki, where are you?
* * * * *
The Sceptosian Palace was huge and completely unlike that of King Ferdinand’s. This palace even had the obligatory mote and drawbridge. It was made of stone and looked big and scary. Inside, however, it was quite modern and held a strange resemblance to the interior of the White House.
Balki had to admit that atleast he was locked up in a very nice and comfortable place. Currently, he had his head pressed against the door trying to hear what Eriki said over the phone. He spoke quickly to someone on the other end, cutting between Myposian and English. Balki couldn’t hear him very well and gave up eventually, stood, and moved back to the king-sized bed, which he flopped face-first onto, folding his arms underneath his chin. He wondered where Cousin Larry had ended up. He hadn’t seen him since he’d left to check the second floor. He hoped his Cousin was okay... and if he was that he’d be coming to find him.
Balki rolled over and sat up. He glanced across the room at the tapestry draped across the chair. He frowned, thinking how petty Eriki was to steal the Myposian national tapestry. And to think King Ferdinand hadn’t even gone to the Debate, either, because he wanted to be assured that nothing would be stolen. He had let the King down and felt horrible about it. Even worse: Eriki wasn’t the thief.
* * * * *
Larry glanced at the four men gearing up for the ‘trip’ to Sceptos. Atleast they looked like they knew what they were doing. They were dressed completely in black and urged him to do the same.
The first man, the Manchester Marauder, who happened to be the only one of the four shorter than Larry, was obviously from England. Larry figured he was around 5’ 3". He had brown hair in a bowl cut and seemed to be one of those guys that all the girls fell for. Larry was a bit jealous of him already and didn’t even have a reason to be.
The second, the Connecticutt Counter Spy, reminded Larry of Balki, but minus the accent. He stood a few inches taller than Larry, had dirty blond hair, and wore beads around his neck. He also wore brown Indian boots, despite the all-black get up for sneaking around.
The third, the Modest, But Towering Texan, who claimed he needed no introduction and did so anyway, was anything but humble. He was the tallest of the group, several inches taller than the Counter Spy. He had black wavy hair and generous side burns. He was also quite thin. He spoke with a Texas drawl and seemed to be the brains, despite his constant mentioning of being the leader.
The last member, the Los Angeles Leopard, mentioned that he was also know as the Panther Man in Peoria. The Texan mentioned that he was the only weak link in their group due to the Panther Man’s low resistance to the night air. He was only an inch or two shorter than the Texan, with dark brown, curly hair, similar to Larry’s. He was almost as lanky as the Texan. Although the Texan seemed tough, Larry got the feeling that the Panther Man was not a guy to mess with. He gave Larry a look that made him scared and Panther Man was only joking around. Or so he said.
Larry had to admit, he thought these guys seemed awfully familiar, but couldn’t quite place them. He also wasn’t exactly sure if they were really King Ferdinand’s "best." They were willing to help, and he was thankful for that, atleast.
The group piled into a carriage, much to Larry’s dismay, and began their way to Sceptos. Along the way, Larry decided the only thing that made him feel better was counting how many times the Panther Man sneezed and the Counter Spy said "Gesundheit".
The Texan drove, while the Marauder rode shotgun. Larry was squeezed between the Counter Spy and Panther Man. He swore he knew these guys from somewhere.
"We’re coming on the Palace," the Texan drawled.
"Set her on coast," the Counter Spy suggested.
"This is a carriage, man, not a car," Panther Man spoke up.
"Will you guys keep it down?" the Marauder asked, his British accent quite obvious.
"So, what’s the plan?" Larry ventured to ask. He wasn’t sure if these guys even remembered he was still there, despite being crammed between two of them.
"We go to the roof," The Texan began. "We’ll sneak in that way, then split up--"
"But, Mike, I don’t want to split up," the Counter Spy said, worriedly.
"Shh!" The Texan, or Mike, was adament about their real names not being used and the Counter Spy had just goofed.
Balki and this guy would get along great, Larry thought, and hoped again that Balki was alive to possibly find this out.
The Counter Spy shrugged and turned to Larry, while pulling something out of his pocket. "Here."
Larry looked at the object the Spy placed in his hand: a key. "What’s this for?"
"It’s a skeleton key," the Spy stated. "Never know when you might need to unlock a door."
"Thanks." Larry smiled and nodded, while thinking the Spy was nuts, probably from too many hits to his head. He pocketed the key and turned his attention back to the ‘scenery.’
The carriage bounced its way over the wooden makeshift bridge that was used in place of the drawbridge, which couldn’t have been used lately considering the massive chains were competely rusty.
The Texan pulled the carriage to a stop, and Larry’s jaw went agape at the sight of the Palace. Castle is more like it. Panther Man ended up pulling Larry out of the carriage due to his gawking.
The Marauder and Texan went about setting up their plans for entry into the Palace, while Larry was left behind with the Spy and Panther Man. He wished he was with the other two.
"We could go around the back and pose as pizza delivery," the Spy suggested.
Panther Man slapped his forehead and gave Larry a pained expression. He sighed, nodding. "He’s always like this."
"Why don’t we just follow the others to the roof and see what there is for entry up there," Larry offered, trying to stick to the original plan.
The three followed the others. They rejoined at the base of the Palace and together looked up.
"Oh, my Lord..." Larry muttered, suddenly remembering something. "Did I mention I’m afraid of heights?"
"Come on, fellas," the Texan urged.
The four began ascending the outter wall while Larry watched them, shaking his head.
"I’m going to find another way in," he called after them.
"We’ll meet you inside," the Marauder called back.
Larry began following the length of the wall. Maybe he could find a window. He was glad that, despite the fact this castle had a mote, there was still about 20 feet of land between the water and the building itself. Finally, half way around the back he spotted a small square window that was just below eye level. He glanced inside, and saw nothing but darkness. He took in a deep breath, let it out, and reached inside the window. Holding onto the sill, he pulled himself up and in through the window, landing with a *thud* on the floor inside. He sat there a moment and realized he felt carpeting on the floor. Larry ran his fingers over the fabric.
Now, if only he could get up and start searching this place...
* * * * *
Eriki was seated at his desk, hands clasped, but with his elbows resting on the desktop. He’d done it again: he stole yet another government artifact. Unfortunately, he’d also run into Bartokomous again. Eriki wasn’t worried about him, as he was currently locked in one of the Palace’s many rooms along with the tapestry. He’d go retrieve the tapestry later when he was ready to get some answers from the troublesome Mypiot. Eriki wondered if that American cousin of his ever got out of the office he locked him in.
He smirked. With those two out of the way, he could now go about using the artifacts he’d stolen to bring the other governments to their knees.
Eriki’s head shot up at the sound of his office door opening. A tall, brunette walked in and sauntered up to his desk. She wore a black jumpsuit, which wasn’t revealing but rather melded itself to her form. She seated herself on the corner of his desk.
Eriki cleared his throat. "Selena, always good to see you again."
"Why isn’t the tapestry here?" Selena queried, leaning across the desk.
"I have the Mypiot locked in one of the rooms, along with the tapestry," he replied. She frowned. "The American I locked in one of the offices of Ferdinand’s government house. I have plans to ask the Mypiot some questions".
She paused, thinking. "That sounds reasonable enough, but make it quick." Selena stood and moved to the door. "Eriki..."
He lifted his eyes. "Yes?"
"I would appreciate it if you wouldn’t look at me below eye level." She opened the door and left.
Out in the hall, she walked down the long corrider, turning at the end. One of the side doors opened, and Larry peeked out, looking down the hall after her. He had heard their whole conversation. If only he could figure out where Balki was.
He heard a door open and closed his just enough to still look out into the hall. Larry saw Eriki emerge from his office and start down the hall towards his hiding spot. He mouthed "Oh, my Lord" and held his breath. He pressed himself against the wall as Eriki passed the door. A few seconds later he heard another door open, then close. He let out the breath he held and ventured another look into the hall.
Larry paused in the doorway to make sure the hall was clear before stepping out. He moved toward the room both Eriki and the woman had left. Maybe he could find some clues in there and possibly shed a little more light on Paslimous’s plans. He looked around once more before slipping into the room, which he found to be an office. One thing was for sure, Eriki had the same interior decorator that did the White House. He wandered around looking at the paintings and sculptures before moving to the desk. There were several papers scattered about on the desk top.
As he began shuffling through them, he thought he heard a sound from the hall. Larry looked toward the door and saw the handle turn. He glanced around quickly, but couldn’t find a place to hide.
The door opened, and Selena entered, closing the door after her. She folded her arms over her chest and gave him a smile. "You are not Eriki."
Larry somehow managed, desperately, to not let his jaw drop at the sight of her. "N-no, I-I’m n-not." He frowned.
Selena took slow strides moving closer to where Larry was rooted. She watched him swallow hard as she got to the opposite side of the desk. "I don’t believe you should be in here." She continued around the desk and stopped in front of him, her smile changing to a smirk upon realizing that he was atleast six inches shorter than she was... and her heals were only two inches.
He was frozen. He wanted to move, but he couldn’t. His mind was running in circles and the circles weren’t offering any ideas on what to do about her.
"Now, what should I do with you?" Selena asked, rhetorically, while fingering the collar of his shirt.
Sensory overload! Who did this woman think she was, anyway? Larry’s mind stopped going in circles and abruptly went to tilt.
"Eriki must be done with the Mypiot by now. Maybe we can lock you in one of the rooms until you’re of use to us," she said.
"Done with?" The words actually made their way through his head and rang out loud and clear. So clear and loud, in fact, that it snapped Larry out of his haze. "You lie. Balki can’t be dead. He hasn’t done anything!"
"Maybe that’s the problem," Selena offered, her smirk seemingly stuck on her face.
Larry shook his head slowly. "It can’t end like this. It won’t." He took advantage of how close she was by grabbing the wrist stretched in front of him and twisting her around in an arm lock.
She gave a small cry of shock and pain at the sudden ‘attack’ and fell to her knees, trying to ease the pressure on her arm.
He glanced around the room, looking for some way to keep her out of the way until he could atleast find the guardsmen who were supposed to be helping him, but had yet to make an appearance inside. He finally spotted a robe hanging on what he assumed was a closet door. He got Selena to stand and moved her toward the door. He pulled the cloth belt out of the robe’s belt loops, pulled her other arm behind her back, and tied her wrists together the best her could.
"I take it you weren’t a boy scout," Selena commented, snidely.
Larry ignored it and moved her into the nearest chair. "Now, which room is Balki in?"
"Why should I tell you?" she asked, with all the attitude she had in her.
His brow arched. "Uh, because..." he paused, then it came to him. He leaned in close to her face, "I may have never hit a woman before," he squinted his eyes, "but there’s a first time for everything."
Selena fell for it. She sighed. "He’s in the fourth room on the left, just down the hall. Eriki may still be in there."
Larry gave her a quick, thin smile. "Thanks for cooperating." He quickly left the room and headed down the hall, counting doors as he passed them. He got to the door and tried the knob, but found it locked. He pressed an ear to the door, listened, and he heard... laughter? He pulled away and glared at the door. What the heck? He tried to think of some way to break down the door.
That’s when it hit him. The skeleton key! He dug the key out of his pocket and quickly put it in the lock, turning it. The lock clicked, and was able to turn the knob. Larry busted through the door, but came to a halt. Now, her understood the laughter.
Eriki gave him a glare and pointed the feather he was holding at him. "I locked you in Ferdinand’s government building!"
"Cousin!" Balki exclaimed, from where he sat just behind Eriki. One of his feet was bare and propped up on an ottoman.
This was too weird. "You’re trying to tickle information out of Balki?!" Larry said, incredulously.
"Well, what kind of torture would you use?" Eriki asked, indignantly, letting his guard down.
Larry took the opportunity and ran straight into Eriki, sending both of them to the floor with Balki cheered on his cousin. Larry took the first swing, connecting with Eriki’s right eye. Eriki rolled them over and connected with Larry’s jaw. After several reversals, they’d rolled close to a stand that held a glass flower vase. Larry reached up for it and hit Eriki over the head with it, knocking him out. Larry moved back, thudding himself into a seated position on the floor, breathing heavily and used the back of his left hand to wipe away a small trickle of blood from his lower lip.
Balki cheered. "Oh, Cousin, if my hands weren’t tied right now, I’d applaud!"
Larry turned a glance at him. "Thanks, Balki."
* * * * *
Larry was just finishing up untying Balki when the guardsmen finally appeared in the doorway.
"Wow, what happened it here?" Panther Man asked.
"And what happened to you?" the Texan drawled, walking up to Larry.
Balki pointed at Eriki, who was still unconscious on the floor. "Cousin Larry caught Eriki. He’s a hero!" He draped an arm around Larry’s shoulders.
"No, I’m not," Larry said, shaking his head. "I just did what I had to do, that’s all."
The Spy pulled the key from the door. "You used my skeleton key!"
The Marauder slapped a hand to his forehead. "I can’t believe that thing worked!"
"I told you it would work," the Panther Man said, nodding his head.
Balki walked over to the Spy. "Wow, is that a real skeleton key?"
"It sure it," the Spy confirmed. "Made out of real skeleton, too!"
Larry groaned and rolled his eyes. Those two were way too much alike for his liking.
"Come on guys, let’s gather up everything and everyone and get back to King Ferdinand," the Texan said.
"Great! I’ll get the woman from the office," the Marauder offered.
"No, you don’t," Panther Man said. "I’ll get her. We can’t risk you getting stars in your eyes. We’re already over budget as is." He headed for the door and went out into the hallway.
* * * * *
The next day, Larry and Balki returned to King Ferdinand’s government house, spotting the carriage already there. As they neared the building, they could hear music.
"What’s that?" Larry asked, turning a questioning look to Balki.
"Didn’t they tell you, Cousin? The guardsmen play music together," Balki replied.
The guys entered and walked through to the ballroom where "the band" was set up and still playing.
He wasn’t sure about Balki, but Larry recognized the song they played. It was "I’m A Believer." Larry tapped Balki on the shoulder. "Don’t these guys remind you of anyone?" He knew Balki had to know who he meant, since he’d caught reruns of the tv show on Nickelodeon.
Balki thought for a moment. "Yes, they do, Cousin!" He beamed. "Aren’t they the Royal Guardsmen?"
Larry slapped a hand to his forehead. "No, Balki..." He continues as...
*end credits roll*
* * * * *
Disclaimer & Special Thanks:
I would like to profusely thank The Monkees & the episode from their series "Art For Monkees’ Sake" for playing a huge role in helping me through writing this fic. Yes, the guardsmen are the Monkees. The Royal Guardsmen did "Snoopy’s Christmas" & a handful of other novelty songs.
Selena was played by Julie Newmar, the one & only Catwoman.
The feather torture bit came from an original Ninja Turtles cartoon, "Case Of The Hot Kimono."
* * * * *
That little bit of the movie you miss if you leave during the credits...
Jennifer and Mary Anne are visiting the guys the day after they returned from Mypos. Balki rambled off everything that happened, while Larry sat with his chin resting in one palm, his elbowed propped on the arm of the couch.
"I am so proud of you, Larry," Jennifer said.
"Yeah, it takes alot to get over fear of the dark," Mary Anne said, nodding.
"It was nothing. Really," Larry objected, choosing to ignore Mary Anne’s comment.
"Nothing? Nothing?" Balki began. "Cousin, you rescued the Mypos national tapestry and me."
Larry considered it. "I did do that..."
A knock came at the door.
"I’ll get it." Balki stood, went to the door, and opened it.
A delivery man stood there. "Are you..." he squinted at the clipboard he held, "Bal-ki Bar-toko-mouse?"
"Sign this, please." He held out the clipboard, but Balki used sign language for the word ‘this.’ "I meant sign you name on the paper."
Balki signed the paper, correctly, and came back into the apartment with a package. "It’s from Mypos--"
"Send it back!" Larry wailed and ran for his room, slamming the door.
"What got up his nose?" Balki asked.
The girls shrugged.
* * *The End* * *