Gadget Blows a Fuse
Written by: Kevin (KS) Sharbaugh

“Seventy-two hours, nineteen minutes and fifty seconds,” Gadget calculated, “Golly, I really did lose track of time!” Cleaning up crumbs and other remnants of hastily prepared snacks, she started to put her workshop back into some semblance of order after a three day, nonstop inventing spree. As she carried the food scraps to the disposal in the kitchen she began to calculate just how much coffee she must have consumed. However, Gadget couldn’t seem to get past a certain number before losing track and having to start again. “Oops, not good,” she stated aloud as she realized she nearly dumped her crumbs and scraps into a sink full of soapy dishwater. “Guess I need to get some sleep,” the young mouse concluded.
Chip nearly collided with Gadget as he raced past her as she left the kitchen. “Get the Ranger Wing ready, Gadget!” Chip called back to her, “We’ve got a case!” Gadget’s nap had to wait, there were people in need.
It was almost noon the same day when the Rangers returned from their most recent case. Gadget proceeded to disembark with all the others when something stopped her. “What?” she asked as she felt a tug on her tail. Looking back towards the pilot’s seat, she noticed her tail appeared to be stuck in the crevice between the seat and it’s back. “I’m stuck,” Gadget plainly pointed out. Both chipmunks immediately swooped in to be of service.
“I’ll get you loose, Gadget!” Dale proclaimed as he took hold of her tail.
“Ow, owowow,” Gadget protested as Dale tried to pull her tail out with several sharp tugs.
“Dale, you dummy!” Chip intervened with a bonk to his companion’s head, “That’s not how you do it.” He then calmly prepared to try his paw at extricating the mouse. Chip pulled a lever and reclined the seat. Gadget let out a high-pitched squeak as her tail was pinched hard.
“Stand aside!” Monterey Jack declared as he pushed his way onto the scene. With one swift motion he wrenched the back of the seat loose from it’s supports. “There ya’ go, luv,” Monty offered kindly as Gadget retrieved her kinked and sore appendage.
“Uh, thanks, Monty,” Gadget replied as she took in the damage done to the seat. “Now, if you don’t mind, I’d like to put the seat back together,” she added politely.
“Oh, roight,” Monty sheepishly grinned as he began to leave with the embarrassed chipmunks.
Gadget held the displaced seat backing in front of her as she surveyed the damage. Reaching with one paw she tried to retrieve a tool from one of her pockets. The sudden lack of support caused the seat to fall... right on her foot. “Ow!” she yelped.
“You ok, Gadget?” Monty called back.
“Well, yeah, sort of,” Gadget replied, nursing her foot, “I guess not having slept for the past three days is starting to affect my performance.”
“Crikey! Why didn’t you tell us you ‘adn’t slept for three days?” Monty declared as he returned to help his overworked teammate.
“Well I would’ve but we were all preoccupied with the case and then I wanted to get the seat repaired so I wouldn’t have anything on my mind while I-” Gadget proceeded to babble.
“Don’t you worry ‘bout the seat, luv,” Monty interrupted as he began to pull her inside, “You can’t be expected to fix it right in your condition. Now let’s get you inside, get you some nice warm milk and get you off to bed.”
“Thanks, Monty!” Gadget replied courteously.
In the kitchen Gadget sat at the table as Monty heated a small pot of milk. Sitting still for the first time in quite a while, she almost began to nod off. She was barely aware of Monty getting ready to pour the milk into a cup for her. As he lifted up the pot to pour, he burned his finger. “Yeow!” he hollered as he unintentionally tossed the full vessel into the air, “Wailin’ wallabies that’s hot!” Hearing a clang and splash behind him, Monty turned around to see the pot on it’s side on the table and Gadget covered head to toe in warm milk. “Ugh, sorry, luv,” he groaned.
“That’s ok, Monty,” Gadget droned, her exhaustion finally beginning to show in her voice as she wrung milk from her hair, “I’ll just go take a shower than head off to bed.”
Joining Chip, Dale and Zipper in the living room, Monty could hear the sound of the shower staring up off in the distance. Both chipmunks turned to him as he approached.
“Where’s Gadget?” Chip asked, “We wanted to apologize for the incident with her tail.”
“She’s in the shower,” Monty replied, “I accidentally doused her with warm milk.”
“Sounds like she’s having ‘one of those days’,” Dale observed.
“‘One of those three days’,” the Aussie corrected, “She ‘asn’t slept for the past seventy-two hours, mate.”
“Guess we’d better let her get some sleep first,” Chip decided.
As the others nodded in agreement, there was a loud bang from the direction of the shower accompanied by the unmistakable sound of uncontrolled water spraying about. Everyone raced to the source of the commotion. The guys arrived at the bathroom door just as Gadget burst out wearing her robe and completely drenched... but at least there didn’t seem to be any milk left behind.
“One of the pipes burst,” Gadget declared as she began to rush past, “I can repair it, I just need to get some things from my workshop!”
“Oh no you don’t,” Monty declared as he stopped her. Once Gadget was standing still, he ducked into the bathroom and shut off the water. “You need your rest, luv! Me and the boys’ll take care of this,” he declared once he emerged from the bathroom.
“Yeah, by the time you wake up we’ll have it working good as new!” Dale chimed in enthusiastically. Gadget got a very worried look on her face.
“Here you go, Gadget,” Chip stated kindly as he handed her some dry towels he had retrieved from the linen closet. “Don’t worry, we’ll find Dale a movie to watch while we fix things,” he whispered to her as he led her off to her room.
“Thank you, Chip,” Gadget mumbled.
As Chip, Monty and Zipper proceeded to repair the shower, Dale set himself down in front of the TV mumbling about never being allowed to fix anything. Several minutes later the Space Marines were noisily batting the brain sucking zombie monsters from Planet X when Gadget shuffled into the living room in her nightgown.
“Dale, could you turn that down a little?” she asked politely.
“Oh! Sure thing, Gadget,” Dale replied as he hopped up to turn down the volume.
It wasn’t long after Gadget had returned to the warmth of her bed when one of those commercials came on...
“Dale,” Gadget droned as she reentered the living room.
“It’s not my fault!” Dale replied defensively, “Y-you know how they make these commercials louder than the programs!”
“That’s why we have a TV with Smart Sound, Dale,” Gadget pointed out as she hit a button on the control panel. With the offending salesmen muffled by technology, the drowsy mouse returned to bed. Dale collapsed back onto the couch with a sigh, grateful Gadget was as kind-hearted as she was.
The Space Marines were once more battling the brain sucking zombie monsters from Planet X, though much more quietly than before, when Chip burst into the living room. “Dale! How many times do I have to tell you not to leave your comic books laying around our bedroom?!”
Dale jumped up and began making all kinds of frantic motions as Chip continued to loudly berate him. Shaking his head, making slashing motions at his neck, waving his hands, making shushing motions, desperately trying to get Chip to quiet down without making any noise himself.
“What’s wrong with you now?!” Chip asked in frustration, at which point Dale grabbed him by the shoulders and spun him about. Chip found himself face to face with an annoyed mouse who could barely keep her eyes open. “Sorry, Gadget,” he chuckled nervously, “I forgot you were trying to sleep... I’ll go bonk Dale on the head outside.” Chip dragged Dale away by his collar, “C’mon, dummy.” Gadget was barely cognizant of the ‘bonk-ow’ from outside as she stalked back to her bedroom.
Barely half an hour later, all the male Rangers were lined up watching television, doing their level best to understand what was being said without turning up the volume. Without warning, the front door burst open! Before anyone had time to react, the rodents found themselves bound together with exceptionally resilient thread. Zipper managed to avoid the binding thread, but was hit by a flying glob of goop that had him stuck to the wall, unable to move.
As the Rangers struggled vainly against their fetters, their assailant strode triumphantly before them. A masked weasel dressed in black with a billowing purple cape addressed his captives, “Ah-ha! I, Wicked Weasel, have done what no villain has ever done, I have captured the mighty Rescue Rangers in their own headquarters! And soon, I will dispose of them forever and be hailed as the greatest criminal genius ever! MWU-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA!!!” The villainous vermin was cut off by a feral howl form somewhere upstairs. “What was that?” he asked.
“Nothing good, that’s for sure,” Monty responded.
“Quiet, you!” Wicked Weasel shot back. He turned back to see Gadget stomp towards him clad in her nightgown.
“Gadget, run!” Chip shouted.
“Ah! The last Ranger, now my victory shall be complete!” the weasel boasted, “MWU-HA-huh?”
He was cut off as Gadget grabbed the loud intruder by his collar and pulled him down so she was nose to nose with him. “I haven’t slept for three days,” Gadget proceeded to growl, “I got my tail stuck, nearly had it cut off, one of my planes is broke, I got drenched in warm milk, had the plumbing explode in my face, and every time I try to sleep somebody decides to make noise! Then you come in here with your ‘MWU-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA!’ Well, I’ve HAD IT! I won’t tolerate any more noise! So you have two choices: SHUT UP OR GET OUT!!!” Gadget finished gesturing angrily at the door.
Wicked Weasel didn’t bother to stand upright as he quickly backed out of Rescue Ranger Headquarters. Now that Gadget could hear a pin drop, though she certainly didn’t want to, she stomped back to her bedroom. As Monty managed to loosen the thread that kept him and the chipmunks tied together, their assailant stuck his head back into the door.
“Is she here a lot?” the villainous weasel asked very quietly.
“She lives here,” Chip answered just as quietly.
“Twenty-four/seven,” Dale confirmed.
“Oh, well, I guess I’ll be going then,” Wicked Weasel replied, “Sorry to bother you.”
As Monty and the chipmunks stood up and stretched, glad to be free, the portly mouse burst out with, “Well what do you make ‘a’ that?!” The chipmunks tried to silence their friend but were too late as another scream of frustration emerged from Gadget’s bedroom. “Crikey, run for your lives, mates!” Monty called out. Zipper squeaked frantically and flailed his arms about in desperation as he was still stuck to the wall. “Don’t worry, pally, I’d never leave you behind!” Monty declared as he wrenched the poor fly from the wall, taking part of the wall with him as he did so.
On the side of a fountain in the park sat a fly stuck to a piece of wall beside whom sat a round mouse next to two chipmunks who in turn sat beside an oddly dressed weasel. The weasel turned to his companions. “She’s had ‘one of those days’ hasn’t she?”


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