The Return of Winifred

By Jareth

Chapter Thirty-three: Shattered tears of rage

“NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!” Foxglove screamed; tears streaming from her tightly shut eyes.

Winifred could barely believe it. She had finally broken her; she had finally destroyed Foxglove. She smiled, bathing in the waves of despair that exuded from the sobbing bat’s body. “Oh, stop crying,” Winifred said mockingly “it’s not that bad.”

However, Foxglove wasn’t paying any attention to her; and she was certainly not crying. What Foxglove was doing, sounded more like screams of pain, than crying.

“Oh, don’t cry my dear, you still have your other friends… But not for long.”

This caught Foxglove’s attention. “Don’t you hurt any of them!” Foxglove screamed in an emotionally shattered rage.

Winifred walked directly up to Foxglove, stopping only one foot away from her. “Oh don’t worry, I won’t kill them…” Winifred said as she slowly began to reach into her pocket, “…You will.” With that, from her pocket, Winifred withdrew a seven-inch long, black diamond shard. Slowly, she began to raise the shard, holding it like a pencil, over Foxglove’s forehead.

Foxglove knew exactly what Winifred was about to do. It was the insignia curse; the same spell she had used to control Tammy, Sparky, and the entire police force! She was going to harness her inner evil, and use it to force her into murdering her own friends. Foxglove furiously tried to break free of her hold, but found she was still perpetually frozen.

With a flick of her wrist, Winifred scratched the shard across Foxglove’s forehead, leaving a glowing, red, curly-ended letter ‘W’. “There are two chipmunks, a mouse, and a fly downstairs. I want you to sink your fangs into their necks, and not stop until they’re dead!” Winifred commanded, preparing to release Foxglove as soon as the “W” had faded to black.

However instead of Foxglove’s “W” fading to it’s usual shade of black, it’s red glow began to fade into a blue one.

“What?” Winifred asked aloud. “What’s this?”

Foxglove’s “W” continued to glow blue, before fading away completely without even leaving so much as a “W”-shaped scar.

“Impossible,” Winifred began, “It faded… I must’ve taken too long.” Again, Winifred flicked the shard across Foxglove’s forehead. “There.” She said firmly, as the newly etched “W” glowed red, “That was definitely under point-five seconds.”
However, again, the “W” ’s red glow faded into a calming blue, before disappearing all together.

“*grrrr, Why isn’t the insignia curse working?!” Winifred shouted, her frustration now turning to anger. “Why won’t the “W” stay on?! The only possible way for the insignia curse to fail is…” Winifred stopped in dead sentence. “No…” Winifred began, dropping the shard and slowly beginning to back away from Foxglove. “That’s impossible. Everything has at least SOME inner evil! Everything; even rocks!” Winifred looked upon Foxglove’s floating body, still suspended in midair; she still had her eyes closed tightly… but something was different about her expression. She no longer looked upset. In fact, for the first time in her life, Foxglove actually looked angry.

“You…” Foxglove began in an angry tone. “…You awful woman.”

“What?” Winifred asked, surprised by Foxglove’s bravery.

“You’ve lied to everyone who’s trusted you, killed millions of innocent people, and murdered Dale.” Foxglove scowled bitterly.

“And you’ll soon be next.” Winifred added almost cheerfully.

“I’ll kill you.” Foxglove said so silently, it was almost inaudible.

“What’s that?” Winifred asked.

Foxglove’s eyes burst open, sending out a small spray of tears. However, instead of being in their normal state, they were glowing a bright blue. “I’LL KILL YOU!!!”

Winifred closed her eyes in cynicism, apparently not noticing Foxglove’s now glowing ones. “And how exactly, do you propose to do th— *Uuuuh!” Winifred groaned as what felt like a cannonball struck her in the stomach. She looked down to see what had struck her, and was unable to believe what she was seeing. Foxglove had somehow broken out of her psychokinetic hold, and had her fist practically imbedded into her stomach. “What?!” Winifred shouted in shock and amazement. “How did you— *Aah!” She yelled as Foxglove brought her foot into her stomach with such force, it sent Winifred sailing backwards, to the very edge of the platform.

Foxglove threw her head back and screamed in emotionally shattered agony. As she did so, a brilliant blue aura exploded around her. Strangely enough however, Foxglove didn’t even seem to notice it. The second the aura disappeared; she looked back at Winifred. “YOU KILLED HIM!” She shouted. “I’LL NEVER FORGIVE YOU!!!” With that, she launched herself screaming at Winifred, arms outstretched; she was no longer thinking clearly, nor was did she have a strategy or any sort. The only thing that mattered to her anymore, was causing Winifred as much pain as possible.

The second she had reached her, Foxglove began to unleash a barrage of punches. This time, Winifred was ready for her. However, she wasn’t ready for the strength of Foxglove’s punches. They were not only twice that of the first, but Winifred was actually having trouble blocking them. “This isn’t possible!” Winifred thought to herself. “Where did Foxglove get this kind of power?!”

Foxglove continued screaming, her punches becoming stronger by the second.

“The pill!” Winifred said aloud, having a sudden realization. “The pill must have given you this power!” With a hard grunt, Winifred managed to kick Foxglove in the stomach, sending her sailing backwards, skidding to a halt, and landing on her feet.

Foxglove flashed Winifred an enraged glare. As she did so, another blue aura exploded around her.

However, this time, there was something different about it. Winifred was able to feel energy, coming from Foxglove’s body. Positive energy. Winifred stared, bewildered, at Foxglove. “Wait,” She exclaimed, having another realization, “Those pills make the user stronger, they don’t magically empower them, so where is that power coming from?”

The aura surrounding Foxglove suddenly increased in density, growing much brighter.

Suddenly, Winifred realized the source. “You…” She began, almost not believing it herself.

The aura surrounding Foxglove suddenly increased in density again.

“It’s you; that power’s coming from YOU!” Winifred shouted angrily.

The aura surrounding Foxglove suddenly disappeared once again. Without the slightest bit of hesitation, she began to fly at Winifred.

“I’ve got you!” Winifred shouted, aiming her hands at the oncoming bat. With an enormous bang, Winifred shot a beam of red energy from her hands, twice the size she had used on her brother, at Foxglove. Winifred watched as the beam hit her head on, causing a loud, smoke-ridden explosion, fogging Foxglove from view. “I don’t know how you became so strong so suddenly, but not even Zoniha herself could have survived that blast.”

However, Winifred had spoken too soon; and was rendered temporarily speechless, as Foxglove came sailing out from the smoke, and collided with Winifred, ramming headfirst into her chest, and sending her flying backwards so fast, that she had to use her powers to stop herself from flying off the tower. Winifred immediately regained her balance, but had no time to react, as Foxglove charged her again, using her fist like a battering ram to punch her in the stomach, and sending her flying backwards. Again she magically stopped herself in midair.

Winifred looked down at Foxglove, confused anger filling every inch of her being. “This is ridiculous!” She thought angrily to herself. “The tsuyosa potion was supposed to make me nearly invincible, so how is it that that bat can fight me on almost equal terms?!”

Foxglove kicked off the ground, and began to fly at Winifred.

Winifred noticed the shard she had dropped, and suddenly, had a brilliant idea. “If I dive and ram Foxglove into the floor, in a spot where the black diamond shard is in my reach, She’s bound to die; and if she somehow survives, then I can stab her with the nearby shard!”

Foxglove opened her mouth, ready to bite, when she suddenly felt Winifred’s hands on her shoulders.

With hypersonic speed, Winifred soared downwards, slamming Foxglove, back-first, into the floor, creating an huge, shatter-marked, circular indent. Winifred looked down upon Foxglove’s face, her hands still on Foxglove’s shoulders. Foxglove’s eyes were shut, meaning she either dead or unconscious; though her hate filled expression remained. “I can’t believe you’re still in one piece.” Winifred said to Foxglove’s body. “The sheer fact that you didn’t explode upon impact is –” Winifred stopped in mid sentence as Foxglove’s eyes burst open, now glowing even brighter than before. It was as Winifred had expected. Quickly, she grabbed the nearby shard and thrust it at Foxglove’s chest. She was only two feet from puncturing Foxglove’s heart, when suddenly; Foxglove’s wings sprung up and clasped around the shard, stopping it in mid thrust.

It had now become a contest of strength. Winifred was attempting to force the shard downwards, while Foxglove was trying to move the shard off to the side. The two grunted and groaned, trying to force the shard in their separate directions until finally, the inconceivable happened. Foxglove had been forcing the shard to the side with such force, it shattered, cracking in half first before dividing back into it’s former seven fragments, which scattered across the floor.

Using both legs, Foxglove kicked Winifred off, and jumped to her feet.

Winifred soared backwards through the air, flipping and landing gracefully on one foot. “THIS IS RIDICULOUS!” She shouted angrily, stomping her foot so hard, the onyx beneath it cracked. “YOU CAN’T BE STRONGER THAN ME, YOU JUST CAN’T BE!!!”

Foxglove didn’t respond. Tears were still violently streaming from her eyes. She threw her head back and screamed in emotionally shattered agony once again, as the blindingly bright blue aura erupted around her once more. However, this time, something else happened. Instead of the aura disappearing, it began to grow brighter; continuously brighter, to the point where it hurt to look at it.

Winifred shielded her eyes, as the light intensified, now becoming a white, blinding radiance.

Suddenly, Foxglove’s screams subsided, as the blinding white light disappeared. Winifred had been somewhat unprepared for Foxglove’s impossible strength, but was definitely not prepared for what she now saw, standing before her.

“Dale, DALE!” Gadget called, shaking Dale’s lifeless body. “Please wake up!”

“Come on Dale!” Chip called, slapping Dale’s face a few times, “Snap out of it!”

Zipper made a “Dale!” noise.

“Uh…” Dale moaned. “Wha ha- who…”

“Dale, you’re all right!” Gadget said with relief.

“What happened?!” Chip asked anxiously.

“I…” Dale began, not really sure how to describe it. “I was laughing and then… then I was in this dark pit.

“Dark pit?” Said Gadget.

“Yeah,” Continued Dale “It was really cold… But then it got warm, and I was in someone’s arms.

“Who’s arms?” Chip asked.

Dale paused before answering. “An angel’s.”

Gadget was about to inquire further, when suddenly, from the far wall, came a groan. “Huh?” The Rangers said, turning to see who had made the noise.
It was Tammy. She had somehow regained consciousness.

Tammy stood, legs wobbling. “Whe-where am I?” She asked, sounding a bit dazed. Suddenly, she began to fall, only to be caught by Chip. “Chipper?” She said, slowly coming out of her daze.” Tammy looked around, her eyes taking in her surroundings; the glowing floor, the shiny black walls, the invisible light source, the giant silver foxes... “WHERE AM I!” She screamed, startling Chip so much, that he almost dropped her.

Winifred was seeing it, but was still unable to believe it; Foxglove had transformed. She was now six feet tall; her pink fur had become a heavenly white. Her body structure was now like that of a human’s, with longer legs, and arms instead of wings. However, besides the fur, she carried several inhuman features; such as the giant pair of feathery wings protruding from her back. Her head had also changed, staying similar to her previous one, with the absence of her muzzle, which had now been replaced by a more human nose and mouth, though her bat-like ears remained. Another change, was that she was now wearing clothes. It was an odd, white outfit; a smooth cloak that dipped down to a point in back, with wide, gold trimmed sleeves. Foxglove made eye contact with Winifred; her eyes now possessing a backlit blue glow, like two large nightlights.

Winifred was too afraid speak, and could only watch as the dark skies cleared, the tornado disappearing.

Without a word, Foxglove began to gracefully walk forward, stopping next to the small flower Winifred had embedded into the ground earlier. Calmly, she bent down and picked it up, holding out in front of herself. Immediately, the foxglove began to morph, its color shifting to gold, while it’s stem thickened and elongated. As it did so, small patterned designs began to emerge on it. By the time it had stopped morphing, it was no longer a foxglove. It had become a golden, bell-ended scepter. Foxglove twirled it around, staring at it curiously.

Winifred pointed a shaking finger at Foxglove, before fearfully wheezing out the name, “Z-Zoniha.”

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