Cobwebs of the Past
A Chip N' Dale's Rescue Rangers story by Morgan Kohl
Passing through the hall on his way to get a midnight snack, Zipper noticed that the door to Dale and foxglove's room was hanging open. He stopped, hovering in midair, and regarded it with a puzzled look. Something seemed... Off.
Suddenly filled with an unnamable worry, the small turquoise-hued fly put his ear to the crack in the door. He didn't hear anything. "Dale? Foxglove?" he buzzed questioningly. No answer.
Unsure about what he would see, and hoping we wasn't about to be very rude, Zipper slowly eased the door open enough to peek inside.
'Well, they're probably out at a late night movie or something,' he told himself.
But even after he'd gotten his snack and was back in bed, he couldn't shake that little feeling that something was very, very wrong...
* * *
Foxglove stirred in her sleep. She yawned prettily and turned over. Her bed felt wrong. Much too hard. She blinked and came to her senses.
Gone was Dale's cozy room. Gone was Rescue Ranger headquarters. She found herself in a place of grey. Cool, smooth glass surrounded her on five sides. Fine metal screening made the ceiling of her prison. An Overly-bright artificial light above disoriented her and made her shield her eyes with her wings. The only other thing with her in her prison was empty space. Outside the glass was a vast cement expanse. Surrounding her were towering piles of moldering wet boxes and crates. She could see a few machines here and there, and two huge metal doors. A warehouse, apparently. There was so much extra room around her, it made Foxglove feel tiny and extremely vulnerable
The little pink bat's heart began to beat wildly in her chest. Where was she? What was going on? Was this a dream? No, it was much too real, no matter how surreal it felt. She felt like she was shrinking. So much emptiness around her. The light above was menacing, hiding enemies she knew were crouching out of sight in the shadows.
She felt around her throat, suddenly noticing her engagement ring was gone. Had someone stolen it? No, now she could remember taking it off before going to bed and setting it inside the little wooden box Dale had bought for her her last birthday. She knew where her ring was now, but where was *she*? And where was Dale?!?
Foxy turned around completely and her eyes grew wide. "DALE!!" Her lover was lying on his stomach a few feet away from her. Was he hurt? Was he dead?
Dale's eyes snapped open when he heard his shouted name. He bolted upright, his head swiveling around, making as much sense of his situation as Foxglove had. He turned and saw his love behind him, worry filling her beautiful face. "Foxypie!" He jumped up and ran to her, knowing that if he could just touch her that everything would be okay.
"Dale, wait! We're in-"
"...aquariums," finished Foxglove.
Dale sat up and held his aching noggin. Little pink bats fluttered around his head. He looked up, even more confused than before, and saw the shining oval print that his nose had left on the glass that separated him from Foxy. He saw too late that they were in separate aquariums, pushed together so they could get close to one another, but not actually touch.
He grinned sheepishly. "Aquarium. Right."
"You okay, darling?" Foxglove asked worriedly.
Dale rubbed his nose to make sure it was undamaged. He managed a smile for her. "I'm fine. I only hit my head!"
She hid a chuckle behind her wings.
Dale got to his feet. He leaned on the glass. "So, where are we anyway?" he asked.
"I don't know! I thought you would! I was asleep at headquarters and then I woke up here in this nasty place!" Foxglove said, her voice wavering with fright.
"Gosh, you think we've been captured by some criminal mastermind again?"
She sighed. "Looks like it."
"Darn. I was hopin' to sleep in tomorrow."
For a few moments, the bat and chipmunk just looked at each other, waiting for one of them to say something. The utter quiet in the sprawling warehouse was genuinely eerie.
Foxy finally broke the silence. "So, um... What do we do now?"
"Dunno," Dale replied.
Another long silence.
Dale scrunched up his face in deep thought. 'What would Chip do?' he thought. 'He'd get himself outta this in a jiffy. He'd find some clever way to climb up the walls or break the glass or somethin'.' Dale looked around. The only thing besides him in his glass cell was air. 'Okay, so I don't have much to start with. And I'm not the clever one, that's Chip. Gadget's the brain, Monty's the strong one, Zipper's the little guy and I'm the comic relief. And Foxy's the cute one. Hmmmmm. This is gonna be tough...'
Dale and Foxglove both pondered their situation for several minutes.
"Hey! I got it!" Dale suddenly exclaimed.
"What, Cutie? What, what?" Foxy asked excitedly.
"Well, you're a bat, right? And you can fly, right?"
"Last time I checked. *giggle*"
"Then how 'bout flyin' up to the top and seeing if you can lift up that screen?"
Foxy jumped for joy. "Oh cutie! You're so smart! I knew you'd think of something!" She flexed her powerful flight muscles and gracefully flitted up to the ceiling of her aquarium. All she'd have to do was lift up the screen and they'd be free! Hooray!
But when she inspected the screen more carefully, her face fell. "Uh oh."
Dale grimaced. "*Uh oh*?!? I don't wanna hear 'uh oh'!!"
Foxglove landed softly beside him (or as close to that as she could get). Her face was not happy. "Sorry, Darling. It's not good."
Dale gazed reassuringly into her eyes. "Aw, it's not _your_ fault, my little bat-flavored lovemuffin. What's the scoop?"
Foxy smiled at what he'd called her, but then sighed defeatedly. "Well, the screen's attached to a plastic ring that goes all around the aquarium. It's glued on tight. There's no way I could budge it, even if I hung upside down and pushed from that direction. We're trapped."
Dale growled low in his throat. "Double darn." He sighed and slumped down the side of the glass to sit on the floor. He rested his cheeks in his paws, his elbows on his knees. "Well, nothin' much we can do now except wait until something happens, I guess."
"Guess so," Foxy said resignedly. She sat down on the slick glass
Dale, getting as close to him as the glass would allow. She brightened suddenly. "Wanna play twenty questions?"
Dale shrugged. "Why not?"
Foxy clapped her wings in glee. "Good! I've got something in mind already!"
"Is it bigger than Godzilla?" Dale asked.
Foxy snickered. "No."
Dale grinned. "Is it *stinkier* than Godzilla?"
Foxglove burst out laughing. "Ha ha haa! Never!!"
"Did it ever stomp all over Tokyo for any reason?"
She fell over on her back, shaking with laughter. "No! Dale, it is NOT Godzilla!"
Dale scratched his head. "Well, there goes that theory."
* * *
From a short, but hidden distance away, someone observed the bat and chipmunk's playful laughter. "They seem like such a happy couple," she sighed. Then she grinned. "Oh well, it will only make their pain greater later on..."
* * *
More than a few minutes had passed.
Dale stroked his chin thoughtfully. "So... Lemme get this straight; It's smaller than a breadbox _and_ Godzilla, it has fur, it lives in a tree, it's not an alien or a mutant or a killer robot, it wears clothes, it's not stinky, and it's cute. Did I miss anything?"
"It's not a watermelon," she reminded him.
Foxy smirked. "Four questions left, cutie!"
Dale was completely stumped. He had absolutely no idea what this mysterious thing Foxy had in mind could be. He decided to go with his gut instincts.
"Is it Don Ho?"
"Is it... Darth Vader?"
"He's not furry and he doesn't live in a tree!"
"Right... Is it a plate of erkburgles?"
"Is it a baloney sandwich?! *PLEASE* let it be a baloney sandwich!!"
Foxglove laughed so hard she thought she'd pop. "No no no! Beeep! Sorry, you've run out of questions and I win the game! Yay!"
Dale crossed his arms and grumbled. "Could you at least tell me what it was?"
Foxglove smiled at him sweetly. "It was YOU, Cutie! You're cute and furry and you live in a tree!"
"B-b-but it's only part of a tree! In a junkyard! That has to count for something!"
Foxy shook her head. "Nope. Still a tree. I win, Mister 'Munk!"
Dale snarled a little. "Well, okay. But it's my turn now."
"Do you have something in mind?"
Dale grinned triumphantly. "Oh yeah..." 'She'll _never_ guess this one! Never, ever ever in a billion million years!' he thought with absolute confidence.
Foxy put a wingtip to her lips in thought. "Is it Godzilla?" she guessed.
Dale growled in rage. "Aw, DANGIT!!!" He jumped up and started pulling his hair and stamping around.
Foxglove tossed back her head and chortled heartily. "I got it on the first try?!?"
If looks could kill... Dale narrowed his eyes and growled "_yes_."
Foxy hopped up and did a little victory dance. "Yipee! Yay! I won again!"
The red-nosed chipmunk sat back down and grumbled, his expression as sour as a gooseberry.
She noticed, and gave him a sympathetic smile. "Aw, cutie, don't be so grumpy. Wanna play again?"
"Nuh-uh," Dale said with all the terrible grouchiness of a four-year-old.
"Oh come on! I'll do an easy one this time. Okay, I've got it!"
Dale rolled his eyes. He cringed and guessed. "It's not me again, is it?" he tentatively ventured.
Foxy's eyes lit up. "Hey! You got it! Yay for Dale! Yay for my Cutie!!"
A broad smile leaped to dale's face. "Really? I did? It was me? Cool!!!"
"Uh huh! And do you know _why_ it was you?" she asked with a little grin.
She smiled softly and tenderly. "'Cause you're the only thing on my mind, Dale. Now and forever," she told him sincerely.
Dale leaned forward, his expression showing how touched he was by her words. "Aw, Foxy! That's so sweet of you to say! Y'know, if this glass wasn't here, I'd give you a great big kiss right now."
The pink bat's heart did cartwheels. "Oh Dale!"
"This is just sooo romantic," a cold, sharp voice suddenly spoke out from the darkness. "I wish I had my camera."
Chills ran down Dale and Foxglove's spines. The romantic moment had been completely smashed by pure dread. They knew that voice.
"VICTORIA!" they exclaimed in unison.
The arachnid in question stepped smoothly into the light. "You remembered me. Oh good."
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