Return of the Bad Toys

She waits, hunkered down in a cave made of fabric. Her paws have disappeared under her grey fur.

Her reptilian eyes flick back and forth along the carpet outside. There are little toys everywhere. She swears she sees movement where movement should not be. She doesn't dare close her eyes. In her concentration, her grey lips droop. She is the phyzziwhizz, and she is no longer the queen of her castle.


Her older brother fell under the influence of the bad toys weeks ago. It changed him. He began letting out horrendous screams through closed doors in the middle of the night. His tail flipped about violently and he lunged at himself, letting out the most troubling yowls. Each day he got louder and more destructive, and each day the number of toys increased until the carpet was crawling with them. He angered the gods by waking them repeatedly with the coming of the great light each day.

Phyzziwhizz tried to stay out of the way. She placed her four paws gingerly around the toys, but they began to move when her back was turned. She retreated into the relative safety of the cave, only emerging to eat or use the litter box. Each trip for food was a frightening journey. Sometimes, on one of these trips, she spied a pair of eyes glinting at her down the hall. It possessed her with a frantic fear, for a moment, until she realized they were only two bell toys spaced apart, the glint of metal from the bells looking like eyes.


Her other sibling, Frida, went missing a few days earlier. Frida was mentally challenged, and did not share her sister's paranoia. Frida wandered dumbly among the toys, unafraid and unaware of their nasty influence. She mistook the toys for giant granules of litter and began making preparations to empty her bladder on them by drawing invisible lines in the carpet with her paws.

On the final day before her disappearance, Frida angled her hind quarters apart just so, and let her face go blank as a steady stream emptied onto the carpet and across two plastic ball toys. She squatted again for half a minute, then moved to reveal a small, glistening mass draped over one of the long fabric toys. Soon afterwards, she disappeared.

The possessed older brother has retreated to the back room. Phyziwhizz can only surmise that the bad toys took Frida away for defiling their brethren. The older brother, the one that went bad, the troublesome behemoth, he with the white and grey coat, may be amassing an army in the back room for an all-out assault on the gods themselves.

Yes, the gods. They let out the breath of the exasperated ancients at his violent shenanigans, but it was nothing more than wind blowing through their domain. He, the bad one, he had them, at the bequest of the toys, he had them. They were his. His ascendancy to godhood was at hand.

At last, on the seventh day of her self-imposed exile in the cave made of fabric, Fhyzziwhizz sees him. He trots fearlessly through the fabric balls, the discarded fishing poles, the green fuzzy grinch mice, and the one giant whirligig turbo scratcher. He heads for her. She flattens her ears, tucks her head into her torso, and lets out a long hiss. Her whole face crinkles, and like a spitting cobra, she lets a puff of spittle burst over the scene. She hisses again and a single claw pulls out from under her and slices her brother across the nose.

He stops his attack and gazes dumbly out at her. A single red line appears across his nose. His face is like a clown's, blank with wonderment. Her impossibly sharp claws have knocked sense into him. His tail stops swishing. He stops, then sits, and collapses his body so that his fuzzy belly and a tangle of paws is facing her. A spell has been broken.

"Oww!" he yowls. "Oww owww owwh!"

She hisses again, and again, but blinks her eyes a few times more and tentatively emerges from the cave. Behind her brother's repose is a solid stack of toys. They have assembled behind them. This was to be his grand army, leading a revolt against the Gods. Now that he is no longer of the toys, they still seek blood sacrifice. They murmur things to him. If they cannot turn him, or his feisty grey sister, they can still make the dumb one do their bidding.

Phyzziwhizz stands nexts to her brother. He picks himself up. Their sister, Frida, is still alive! If they don't get to her before the bad toys, it may be too late for her, for them, and for the gods who give them life. They swivel their heads toward one another, joined by a common purpose. The calamitous pile of bells, fabric, and plastic stand in their way, but behind those hard furry skulls of primal synapse, a rescue mission is already brewing.


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