Subject: [FFML] [C&C] [Multi-crossover] [SI] Otaku Muyo 1
From: Jared Waddell
Date: 1/20/2006, 9:22 PM
To: Tannim Murphy
CC: "ffml@anifics.com" <ffml@anifics.com>


Well, here we are with another self-insertion story.  Rather than do
something constructive, like solve world hunger, give C&C, or actually
finish another chapter in one of my other stories, I figured "why not
be
evil?" and came up with this instead.

<gasp> You ARE evil!


I personally blame the fact that I've been on a self-insertion
fanfiction kick, and I've been reading (some even for the first time)
some of the older, and/or more well-known series in the business.
Twisted Path, Undocumented Features, Otaku Reflected, the Labor Series
by Metroanime, Bubblegum Zone, Bubblegum Avatar, Drunkard's Walk,
Trials
by Tenderness, Oh My Brother!, Oh My God?, Ma Vie Et Roses, and
everything written by Carrot, among other things.  So, just like the
cocky bastard that I am, I decided to try my hand at something that
might resemble these great works yet be original in its own right. 

I'm amazed at two things:
1. I haven't heard of about half of these. Google time!
2. You haven't read 'Hybrid Theory'?

And,
of course, no foray into the past is complete without checking out "The
Bitter End" and "A Long and Winding Road" by Zen.  While Zen's stories
might not be SI fics themselves, they are classics that should not be
missed.  I am certain I'm forgetting a few of you out there, but if
you've written an SI story and it's good, chances are I've read and
liked it.  So a mass thanks goes out to the people I've mentioned and
those that I haven't.  Thank you all for writing.  ^_^

I still maintain DB Sommer's Yardwork is the funniest thing I have ever
read.

I have to split my 'funniest fanfic' prize between that and Nuke 'Em Till
They Glow.


I encourage anyone who thinks they know of an SI or crossover story
that
they're sure I haven't heard of to send me links.

Remember, you asked.

http://www.bladeandepsilon.com (Hybrid Theory)
http://www.geocities.com/rick_spiff/ (Three Goons in Eva)*

*NOTE: Shameless plug.




Otaku Muyo

(Because honestly, there's really no need for this.)

but the world always needs evil!


By Tannim Murphy

Disclaimer:  This is a work of fiction, any characters or events that
resemble real people are purely intentional, and hopefully hilarious. 
I
do not own any of the anime characters mentioned.  Anyone else I claim
ownership, and plan on making a bundle on selling the movie rights.

---

Chapter 1

---

As it so happened, it started on a bright and cheery afternoon.  The
sun
shed its light on the uncaring campus of a community college, set out
in
the wilds of California (where land was cheap).  The summer rays
illuminated students and structures alike.  The structures continued to
stand perfectly still while most of the students themselves tended to
scurry from place to place.

However, there was a building set aside from the rest.  Beyond the
track
and field, beyond the archery range, beyond even the fields where the
agricultural students liked to grow their strange creations, was a
single building.  The journey to reach it was quite arduous, and not
only did one have to travel quite a distance from the main campus on
foot over a dirt path, there was the matter of the small forest one had
to traverse as well.

The last sentence is a little wordy, I suggest shortening it. Should make
for more impact in fewer words (good for a commedy, in most cases).


The sweltering heat was made more uncomfortable by the still air of the
forest, and the smell of pine choked the air with each breath.

The steady crunching of pine needles easily scared away any several

'any several'?
just 'several' works. Or 'nearby'.

woodland creatures as the maker made no effort to conceal the noise. 
It
was a man, and he was muttering something under his breath.  With each
step, his grumbling became increasingly louder.

"...off the beaten path, through the woods, what am I, Little Red
Riding
Hood?"

The young man looked to be in his early twenties, wearing a blue plaid
collar t-shirt and a pair of jeans.  Dirty blonde hair was parted down
the middle over a hazel pair of eyes, set on a youngish looking face.

I don't even know if 'youngish' is a word, but changing 'youngish
looking' to just 'young' sounds fine.

Aside from the required eyebrows, there was a small patch of hair on
the
chin kept carefully trimmed.

suggest: a small patch of carefully trimmed hair on the chin.


He was Tannim Murphy, a college student that had recently moved to the
area and was looking for a job.  As it was late in the job hiring
season, and since most of the seasonal college students had already
came
back, this was proving more difficult than he would have liked.

Tannim paused outside the building to stare at the architecture
thoughtfully.  Mostly it was the giant `WARNING: EXTREAME BIO-HAZARD'
sign that had caught his attention.  The various other warnings and
cautionary signs did little to aid his comfort.

He glanced down uncertainly at the want ads he had clutched in his
hands.  There were many things circled, but only the one in the center
didn't have a giant X over it.  Not surprisingly, it read: `Looking For
Subjects, No Exp. Req.'

"This is your own damn fault for not being able to stay away from that
new box set."  The young man muttered to himself as anger quickly
replaced the slight trepidation he had felt moments before.  "I can't
even afford decent ramen!"

Ouch.


Murphy shoved any lingering feelings of doubt away as he forcefully
marched himself into the building.

"The things I do for money."  Tannim looked around the science
facility.
One side of the entryway was taken up by a giant bulletin board covered
from the floor to the ceiling in various flyers and promotions set up
by
the students and teachers.

The other wall was lined with plaques.  Upon closer inspection, it was
revealed that the plaques held names and what award they had won.  They
were generally along the lines of `Most Likely To Become A Super
Villain,' `Most Likely To Blow Up The Planet,' or `Could Take Over The
World If She Felt Like It.'

"I wonder what kinda whackos run this place anyways?"

"The kind of whackos that pay handsomely for willing test subjects."

Tannim turned to meet the voice.  It was from a very beautiful woman,
red hair held back in a practical manner via a ponytail.  The lab coat
did nothing to hide her impressive figure.  She was also grinning at
him
with an odd expression on her face; Tannim assumed it was some sort of
Washuu-like glee at getting someone new to experiment on.

The young man paused to ponder that last thought.  "Wait a second.  If
she's anything like Washuu, then she'll want to... and THEN... and
afterwards... in a nurse outfit!"  Tannim grinned lecherously before he
finally spoke aloud.  "Sign me up!"

"First question."

"Yes?"  The young man was lost in a haze of hormone-induced delusion.
Dancing nurse outfits were predominant throughout.

"Do those jeans have metal buttons?"

Tannim's mental process was brought to an abrupt halt.  "Uh, yes?"

"Off with your pants."

A fist was pumped rapidly in the air...


---

Several forms (and minus one set of pants) later....

Feeling a mite drafty, Tannim contemplated the machinery surrounding
and
encasing him.  "Huh.  This does look kinda like Washuu's device that
she
used on Tenchi," he thought.

Tannim was strapped into a chair with various things either clamped
onto
or over him.  Sensors and devices of all kinds were placed about his
person, with the crowning touch being a metal headband lined with what
looked to be light bulbs.

"Are you into anime?"  Tannim blurted out.

"Huh?  What's anime?"  She replied with confusion.

"Never mind.  It's nothing."

"Interesting little patch of hair you've got there."  The scientist
gently tugged on Tannim's chin hair.

Tannim smirked wryly as he delivered his usual response.  "Well, I am
an
evil twin; we have to keep up appearances."

Too true. :)


The red-haired woman giggled girlishly as she tugged slightly harder.
"A bad boy, huh?  I never could resist those."  She gave a seductive
wink before walking off to prepare something or other.

The young man simply grinned wider, enjoying the attention.  It was
fairly obvious the girl was just playing with him, but he didn't mind.
There were worst ways to spend the day than playfully flirting with
gorgeous women.

Amen, brother!


Within minutes various probes and sensors were stuck, adhered, and
attached to numerous parts of Tannim's body.  Once that task was
completed, the only door to the room was shut and locked.

Hmm. You already noted that he's got sensors of all kinds attached to
him. So, add something like the word 'final' to indicate that the last of
the sensors are added, then the task is complete, the door is shut and
locked, and so on. Otherwise, it sounds like she took the time to put on
the sensors twice, which you could also do (with comical noises of her
ripping off some held on with medical tape just to put them back on
again). ;)


A voice crackled over the set of speakers that linked the room to the
control center.

"Now, you might hear a ringing noise, and feel a sharp stinging
sensation, but I assure you that's normal."

Tannim was left without a means of response.  One of the last things
they added to the sensor list was something he had to clamp down on
with
his teeth.  It wasn't very comfortable either.

Delete 'either' from the end of that last sentence.


Without warning, the lights went out and scared Tannim half to death.
He jumped as much as his restraints allowed him to.

Static hissed for a moment as the speaker crackled in the darkness. 
The
voice seemed very distracted now.  "Don't worry, that's normal...
oof...
here's the REAL switch."

The light bulbs surrounding Tannim's head flashed brightly, and the
young man felt a crawling sensation over his entire body as his skin
attempted to escape without the rest of him.

Murphy suddenly stopped feeling any kind of sensation whatsoever.  It
was as if someone had cut out his brain and stuffed it in a box.  His
mind tried to race as he realized he couldn't feel his heart beating,
but in all honesty, Tannim really couldn't work up enough interest to
care.

"So, this is it."

"...."

"...death."

"I'm dead."

"...."

"...damn...."

"...really wanted to absolve some sins, too...."

"...."

"...sorry God?  Didn't mean it?"

"...."

"...."

"...no response... ...not a good sign...."

"Tannim...."

Tannim hesitated in his ponderings.  That last thought didn't have his
voice.  "God?"

"...you've got to wake up Tannim...."

"Huh?"

"...wake up... wake up... wake up...."

As he turned to search for the voice, Tannim finally felt all sorts of
interesting sensations return as he fell out of bed and slammed onto
the
floor.

"Aaarg!" cried Tannim as he clutched his nose.  He hadn't been able to
prevent his face from hitting full force.  Blood began to seep through
his fingers before he hastily clamped them shut.

Tannim convulsed pathetically as fumbled his way off the floor.  His
entire body had that `asleep' feeling when circulation is cut off for
too long.  He also had a nasty suspicion that if he didn't get moving,
and fast, the fuzzy sensation was going to turn into some very painful
pins and needles.  Hopefully if his body moved enough blood about, he'd
be fine.

"What's this all in here?"  A nurse alerted by the noise grimaced as
she
entered the room.  Her white outfit clung to her form (that wasn't
saying much, as she was slightly overweight to begin with), and her
nametag read `Hattie.'  She looked to be somewhere in her mid forties,
with raven black hair tied up in a bun.  "What are you doing out of
bed?"

It was a hospital, Tannim realized.  He also realized he was damn lucky
to have fallen off the bed on the side of his intravenous drip.  His
attention was called to it as the nurse checked it while helping him
back into bed.

Tannim tried to convey his rising panic about the upcoming pins and
needles.  But whatever was affecting the rest of his body was also
affecting his vocal cords, and he could barely croak anything out above
a whisper.

"...body...asleeb...."

"Oh, I get it!"  Understanding dawned in the eyes of the nurse.  Tannim
looked up at her gratefully.  "You want to get some sleep!"

The nurse took Tannim's weak movements as sign of agreement as she
increased the flow of the medicine currently attached to Tannim's arm.
His eyes briefly bulged in horror, before the increased dose took hold.
With the last of his strength he quickly rolled over so that his nose
was pointing down, and he made sure that the blood from his broken nose
would not flow back down his throat while he was unconscious.

---

Tannim awoke in a nightmare.  He could feel his entire body on fire,
even through the haze of drugs.  It took several minutes, but Tannim
finally realized why he couldn't move: it was due to the massive
amounts
of muscle relaxants mixed liberally with the sleep medication.

He lost track how long he laid there in silent agony.

Okay, now I'm beginning to think you have read Hybrid Theory.


---

And as suddenly as it started, it was over.  Somewhere along the line
the pain had become bearable enough to pass out again, and the third
time he awoke in the same bed, it was under less painful circumstances.
His nose had stopped bleeding, and normal sensation was beginning to
return.

The door to the room opened, and a man wearing a large white coat
stepped through.  But that wasn't the first thing to catch Tannim's
eye.
No, it was the bright blue hair that covered the man's head.

"Woah, nice hair."  Tannim was seriously impressed.  You had to get
some
serious neon blue dye to get it that bright.

"You like?"  The man patted his head.  "Runs in the family.  My dad
always said, `blue hair means brilliance.'"  He gave a small laugh at
his own joke.  "Oh, my name's Ken, Ken Sanada.  But enough about me,
how
are you feeling?"

"Like I can suddenly understand Japanese. And what's with that giant
plant outside the window?"


What a whacko.  "Well, doc, I--" Tannim was forestalled by an upraised
hand.

"I'm not a doctor."

"What?"

The scientist shrugged.  "I'm one of the lab people that work here.
There'd been news you'd finally regained consciousness, and I'd been
sent to make sure you were okay."

Tannim pondered the implications of that statement.  "...you mean I'm
still at the laboratory?"

"Yep," replied a nervously grinning Ken.

"Why?"  The young man was baffled.  Not to mention slightly horrified.

"Well, we figured what with hospital bills being so EXPENSIVE, and all,
and the nurses office here is equipped with the latest in medical
devices since we never know just WHAT kind of injury we'll sustain, and
what with the rising cost in health insurance, and also... well...."
Ken trailed off from his rambling.  "Okay, we wanted to avoid any sort
of lawsuit for performing an experiment beyond spec, alright?  Someone
leaned on a switch a little too hard, and a little too much juice was
used too fast."

OJ hangover? ;)


Tannim sighed.  Ken was right, though.  There wouldn't be any hospital
bills.  "Do I still get paid?"

"Well, see, about that...."  There was a nervous tugging of the collar.

The look of sheer horror caused the scientist to avert his eyes in
order
to deliver his next piece of information.  "It seems that several very
new and very experimental procedures were used in order to save your
life."

Tannim's voice was hollow.  "Yes?  And?"

"These procedures... were quite costly...."

"...no...."

"You owe the--"

"No!"

"I'm sorry, but even if we paid you quadruple time for hazard pay for
the entire time you were out, the cost is--"

"You can't do this to me!" cried Tannim.  "I nearly died!  In fact, I
think I might have!"  The sudden jump in Ken proved it in Tannim's
mind.
He stared hard as he asked quietly, "I did die, didn't I?"

"Technically, we just think your soul was separated from your body.
Your physical form was unharmed."  Ken Sanada had the grace to look
sheepish.  "And the use of the medical facilities also cost--"

Tannim attempted to process these latest revelations, but found he
couldn't.  He held up a hand to stop Ken from speaking any further.
"Okay.  I've had enough for one day.  I'll accept that I owe you oodles
of money in exchange for me being alive.  Can I at least rest up first
before I have to start paying you back?"

"Well, the credit cards we found in your wallet have already hit their
limit, and--"

Ach! Mine bank account!


"Out!"  Tannim shouted as he pointed towards the door.

"Yeah, sure, take all the time you need."  Ken was out the door in a
flash.

Tannim Murphy shivered at the implications of his soul being separated
from his body.  However, his thoughts on the status of his soul had to
wait, as Tannim figured that someone would be checking in on him soon,
and would probably try to give him more sleep medication.

A quick check of the room turned up his clothes.  As he lifted his
jeans, Tannim glanced down at what he assumed was his shirt.  It was
the
exact same design as his old one, except that it was green, not blue.
"Did they dye it?"  He muttered in confusion.

No, he's just wearing contact lenses. ;)


It didn't matter.  As soon as he was dressed, he moved over to the
window.  Just as he figured: he was on the first floor.  The window was
well oiled and slid open easily.

He leapt into the abyss, shouting, "I regret nothing!"


"Like hell I'm going to pay those kinds of bills!"  Tannim grunted as
he
hefted himself over the window sill and towards freedom.

The resulting scramble for the car, and drive home did much to calm
Tannim down.  He didn't regret what he did, but he knew it might come
back to bite him in the ass.  Tannim just hoped the laboratory would
want to keep the incident quiet, and not report him to the police or
something.

As apartments go, was actually quite nice, despite being on the second

suggest: go, it was actually

floor.  The property had a creek running behind it that provided the
area with some relaxing noises, as creeks are wont to do.  An open
window usually could catch the sounds quite easily, and made for nice
background music.  Since the complex was towards the edge of town, the
traffic wasn't bad either.

The door slammed shut with a very loud bang.  Keys, wallet, cell phone,
and spare change quickly found themselves ejected and placed onto a
handy surface.

The sun was beginning to set, and Tannim decided to go to sleep early.
He felt as if he had been run over by a truck, and was out the moment
his head touched the pillow.

---

Tannim Murphy was not an early riser.  His alarm had not been set the
night before, and he had just gotten through one of the roughest
ordeals
of his life so far.

He slept until two in the afternoon.

It was the hunger that finally caused Tannim to stir.  He shuffled his
way through the morning routine as he began mentally preparing another
day of looking for work.

Even though he knew it would do him no good, Murphy reflexively opened
the refrigerator door.  Yep, still no food.  "I have got to get
something to eat."

The young man settled down with the phone book, and opened it to
`pizza.'

"Hello?  Is this Octagonal Table Pizza?  Yeah, I was wondering if you
had any job positions available.  No, but you always accept resumes?
Okay, thanks."  He hung up.

Uh...he's going to start eating the phone book in a minute, isn't he?


Tannim dialed another number at random.  "I would love to work for
Pizza
Shack; do you have any job openings?  No?  Okay, thanks anyways."

Another number.  "Little Nero's Pizza, please let me work for you!  I
beg you!"  The line was cut off as the other end hung up.

Tannim stared grumpily at the phone.  "You suck."  He began dialing
again.

This time a young, hesitant voice answered the phone.  "H-h-hello?
T-this is the Goddess Relief Office.  T-there w-will be--"

"Oh, I'm sorry; I must have dialed the wrong number.  I was trying to
reach Angelino's Pizza," Tannim interjected before turning off the
phone.  While it was great to see a fellow fan with a sense of humor,
he
was simply too hungry to waste any sort of time chatting.

LOL! That reminds me of a great story that's in poor taste.


He sighed as he flipped through the yellow pages once more.  Tannim
paused over an ad for a gaming store.  The restaurant idea to getting
him free food wasn't working.

"Sure, why not?"  He dialed the number.

This time the voice was harsh, and brooked no room for argument.  Each
syllable was spat out rather than spoken.  "MegaGamers, whaddya want?"

"A job."  At this point, Tannim was tired of beating around the bush.

"When can you start?"

Stunned, the young man replied.  "I'm not busy at the moment."

"You're hired if you can get here in thirty minutes."

Tannim was out the door like a shot.

>From the reciever: Hello. Hello?


A few seconds later, Tannim's mirror glowed, and a strikingly beautiful
girl with blonde hair emerged.  Her exotic outfit looked more
appropriate for the theater rather than for casual wear.  Adorning her
face were three strange, triangle-shaped markings.  She also looked to
be about fifteen years old.

"Hello!"

Her energetic cry was met with the quiet air of the apartment.

"Um, hello?  Is anyone here?"

Silence.

"Oh dear."

---

MegaGamers, as it happened, was located inside the Crossroads Mall.  It
was quite an impressive structure, and boasted two stories worth of
stores.  It was the largest mall in a three hundred mile radius, and
was
fairly popular.

The parking was atrocious.

Tannim cursed as the third parking space he had finally spotted was
snapped up by a domineering sports mom in an SUV.  The look of pure,
unbridled hatred at the world at having to deal with the screaming
terrors in the back had caused Tannim to hesitate.

"Screw this."

He decided to park in the boonies.  This was the literal backside of
the
store, where parking was scarce because you had to walk quite a
distance
to get to the really good stores.  It was also the farthest one could
possibly get from the food court.

This is to say nothing of the manned ramparts, the moat with the
mecha-crocodiles and sharks with frikkin' lasers on their heads and the
no-man's swept by machine gun fire at thiry-second intervals.

Yes, it was amazing how the military had squeezed in this live-fire
training ground between the mall and one section of its parking area.


The entryway held one of those large directories that provide a rough
estimation of where all the various stores are located throughout the
mall.  Tannim paused to check it.  He hadn't actually been to
MegaGamers
yet (he usually went to Greatest Purchase or somewhere similar), and
was
relatively unsurprised to find it located next to the food court... and
quite a walk away from him.

There is a certain stride that people who have worked in large retail
stores develop.  Tannim liked to call it the "Wally World Walk," from
where he learned it.  Deceptively simple, the "Wally World Walk" was
very similar to the power walk, but you didn't wave your arms because
that would waste precious energy needed to function for the rest of the
work shift.  This walk was used when one had to travel from one part of
the store to another to show that you were busy.  It didn't matter if
you weren't actually doing any work, as long as you were walking
quickly
place to place; you were less likely to be bothered by a manager or
customer.  The side benefit of the walk was that it was also very, very
fast.  It was one step below skipping in terms of speed, and wouldn't
get you funny stares.

Engineers call this the Meeting Walk.


Tannim used it now, as he made a beeline for the back of the mall.  His
watch said he had five minutes.  He went into the auto-pilot every kid
develops to navigate high school hallways, ducking and dodging around
groups and individuals.

The mall was busy as usual, and Tannim had quite the time of it.  He
felt like he was in something approaching the `Soul of Ice' technique
as
he let go of his consciousness and simply let his reflexes navigate the
mess for him.  This worked very well, for the most part.

It was at the food court that things had started to go wrong.

A strange-looking guy with both the physique and atire more suited to
professional wrestling than mall-cruising jumped onto a table and
screamed, "FOOD FIGHT!"


Later, Tannim decided he had made his first mistake the moment he laid
eyes on the MegaGamers store.  It was as if everything else in the
world
ceased to exit.  Most people can recognize when someone else is in a
hurry and isn't going to move, and get out of the way accordingly.

There was a steady stream of people cursing behind Tannim as he turned
on the Wally Walk to full blast.

Now, normally, a large group of beautiful women ranging in ages from
thirteen to nineteen would have been noticed.  Not today, however.
Today, he was going to get a job, and he'd be damned if mere flesh and
blood would stand between him and a decent meal.

The women were obviously not used to moving out of the way of other
people.  Apparently their pack of pretties was given a wide berth at
all
times, and it was with considerable surprise that the one girl in the
center of the group carrying a drink was suddenly blindsided.

Tannim awoke with a start as he halted his forward progress.  The girl
he had bumped into looked to be around sixteen, and was wearing a very
fashionable blouse.  The drink Tannim had knocked onto her was
currently
soaking the front of it.

The group around the girl had fallen deathly quiet.

"Sorry bout that."  Tannim said, and quickly began walking off, the
entrance to MegaGamers a mere hundred feet away.  He wasn't trying to
be
mean or rude, but his stomach was hungry, and would brook no
interruptions.

He had just gotten to the outside of the circle when a piercing scream
split the air.

"GET HIM!"

Close enough. ^_^


He wasn't sure who had said that, but for the second time that day,
Tannim found himself taking off like a shot.  That fraction of a second
head start proved enough, as he managed to dash inside the store's
entrance ahead of the chasing girls.

Tannim ducked behind a group of kids discussing the latest Pokemon and
Yu-Gi-Oh cards.  He even went so far as to position two of the children
so as to be better hidden from view.

One the Adorably Cute Children looked at him curiously and said, with a
British accent, "That was un-called for."


The girls tried to follow, but were immediately swarmed by the
multitude
of kids who had gathered after school to spend their lunch money. 
"Ack!
No!  Brats!  Retreat!"

Tannim peered over the shoulders of his cover.  "The coast clear?"

The kid nearest to Tannim, sporting a red cap, nodded.  "Those Amazons
won't be back for a while.  You're safe.  What'd you do to piss them
off, anyways?"

"Heh, Amazons, huh?  I bumped into one of them and spilled their
drink."

"Ooo, a clothes defiler.  Man, I feel sorry for you when you leave this
store."

Tannim would have loved to have spoken further on the subject, but he
was interrupted.  A sharp voice rang out behind him.  "You that kid
from
the phone?"

Tannim looked up to see the face of an older German man peering down at
him.  He stood and grinned sheepishly.  "Sorry, sir, I was hiding from
some Amazons."

"Well hurry up, the little monsters have been released from school and
they demand their appeasement.  Get in the back and start bringing out
the boxes for this weeks tournament."

"That means I'm hired?"

The older man glared hatefully at the children.  In response, one of
them showed him their tongue.

"Yes.  Now get to work before I take my frustrations about my job on
you."

suggest: before I take out my frustrations


Tannim go to work.

MegaGamers was a store that devoted its stock to as many gaming
publications and figurines as one person could possibly fit into a
store.  Role-playing books took up one fourth of the store in their own
little library section, while an impressive selection of playable
figurines took up another fourth.  The middle of the store was
dominated
by large tables that were used in weekly tournaments for the various
games.  The wall the cashier was located on also housed all the various
card game sets.

Tannim was kept busy with requests to fetch various cards and
memorabilia from the top shelves.  He was also beginning to understand
why the job opening was available.  While his boss wasn't exactly a
mean
person, he was very, very bitter.

That is to say, he could sour Egypgian coffee at ten paces?


It wasn't a bad work environment, since he had worked at Wally World
before, and knew the ropes so to speak.  Still, it was difficult; the
sea of children was not something that could be dealt with lightly.  It
actually was amazing to think that his boss had been dealing with them
for quite some time.

The work day was fairly uneventful, though Tannim did spot several
women
prowling the entrance.  It was as if some sort of nerd-field kept them
repelled from actually entering the store.  Given the horde of kids
Tannim was currently catering to, he really couldn't blame them.

Hmm. The Nerd Defensive Screen. Effective at repelling most attractive
females!


He even managed to finagle some money from his boss so he could afford
to eat on his lunch break ("That's coming out of your paycheck,
bucko!").  Tannim wasn't so incredibly stupid as to actually venture
outside to fetch it himself, but a pack of cards worked like a charm to
bribe some kid to get it for him.

Time passed, and eventually the store emptied.  Some lucky ten year old
had won tournament and parents had shown up to reclaim their children.

It was six o'clock when it happened; Tannim was restocking the depleted
card game displays, and Mr. Gunter (the only name Tannim could finagle
out of his boss) was in the back retrieving supplies for the next
round.

"My name is Makoto Kino, and I'm calling you out!"

Deja-vu. I've got a story in works with that exact line. No offense, but
I'm changing it. I like how you lead up to it better.


The proclamation shocked Tannim to his very core, and he dropped the
box
he was currently holding.  He turned sharply to see the speaker, and
sure enough, standing outside the store was a really tall half-Japanese
girl.

"Ha ha, very funny."  Tannim turned away from the girl.

"Don't take me lightly!"  She exclaimed.  In her anger, she took a step
forward.  "You'll pay for what you did you our Queen!"

Tannim didn't know whether to be more surprised by the fact that Mr.
Gunter had materialized next to him as if out of thin air, or the fact
that he was now wielding a shotgun.

I think being able to teleport is creepier than a shotgun, but wait until
he snaps armed grenades out of the air with his teeth and bites off the
trigger mechanisms to disarm them...


"You know your kind isn't welcome in this store.  Always window
shopping, and never buying!"  He chambered a round for effect.  "I have
the right to refuse service to anyone, and I choose you.  Now git."

Makoto beat a hasty retreat, but not before throwing a hate-filled
glare
in Tannim's direction.

"You'd best steer clear of those girls, boy.  They're nothing but
trouble."  The older man casually slung the shotgun over his shoulder.

Tannim eyed the weapon warily.  "Not that I'm not grateful and all, but
where did you get that?"

"Isn't it obvious?"  Tannim shook his head.  "I used to be a
terrorist."

Tannim really had no response to that.  "Oh.  So, when do I work
tomorrow?"

For the first time today, Gunter's face was a mask of puzzlement rather
than bitter resentment.  "You are not frightened at the prospect at
working with me?  Those little bastards think its `cool.'  I've
threatened to shoot them a couple of times, but they just laugh me
off."
He actually looked sad at this point.

"As long as you don't blow me up, I'm cool.  Besides, I need the
money."

Gunter actually grinned at this.  "Ah, a man after my own capitalistic
heart.  Come, we have paperwork to fill out."

I was expecting a 'I'll be back.'


Tannim grimaced at remembering the last time he heard those words.
"Actually, I'm kinda trying to lay low.  Is it possible to work under
the table?"

"Well..." Gunter thought about it for a moment.  "I suppose I could
give
you trading card boxes and let you sell them off for your own personal
profit...."

It was Tannim's turn to grin.  "Thanks boss, you're a life saver."

He was waved off.  "Don't thank me yet.  Once you know the store
enough,
I'll finally get a day or two off."

Tannim blanched at the prospect.  "I'd rather face the Amazons.
Speaking of which, I guess I'd better figure out what's the deal with
them."

"Do you require backup?"  Gunter hefted his weapon for emphasis.

"...only if I run back into the store as if the hounds of Hades were on
my tail."

"Right."  The older man nodded seriously.

Tannim moved forward slowly.  It was humbling to realize the scariest
situation he's ever stepped into was against a horde of teenage girls.

For three weeks in high school, I was feared by 80% of the student body.
The only beings on earth that _I_ feared during that time...

Girls.

Go figure.

The young man's mind was working in overdrive at this point, with
plenty
of adrenaline pumping for whichever he decided: to fight or flee.  It
was in this state that he noted that the girl claiming to Makoto did,
in
fact, look remarkably like her.  It was the hairstyle that clinched it,
Tannim decided.

These thoughts kept Tannim from worrying about the slowly enclosing
half-circle.

"Okay, I'm sorry about the drink, but don't you think personal
challenges of honor are a little bit much?"  Murphy tried to reason
with
them.

The one he had spilt is drink on earlier was looking quite angry.  Her
brown hair was swept out of her eyes in a gesture of irritation.  "We
do
NOT appreciate Our new blouse being ruined by the likes of YOU."

Tannim knew he was in deep trouble, but that nervous energy that filled
and energized him also found that statement to be hilarious.  He
couldn't help but chuckle.  "What, that blouse belonged to all of you?
Was it on a time share?"

The darkened glares he received in response shut him up pretty quick.

"We do not appreciate your jokes.  However, according to Amazon
Tradition, once a challenge has been issued, none may interfere."  The
anger was replaced with confidence.  "We're certain that Our subject
Makoto, though she is young, will still be more than a match for you."

It was a bit shocking to Tannim to say the least.  "You mean you're
honest to goodness, real life Amazon Mallrats?" he asked incredulously.
Before they could get angry with that outburst, Tannim interjected with
another one.  "Wait, you mean I've got to fight her?  The fourteen year
old girl?  I'm like, three times her size."

The girl in question stepped forward at this with a smirk on her face.
"I will not fail the Queen."

Tannim had to quickly reevaluate the situation.

Makoto, while half-Japanese, was blessed with the other half of her
genetic makeup composing of the `very tall and strong' genes.  She had
studied martial arts, and had finally found acceptance in a group
(something her Japanese soul had yearned for).  She was confident, and
not backing down.  Her stance said it all.

The realization struck Tannim with the force of a twenty pound
sledgehammer:

`I am going to have my ass kicked by a fourteen year old fangirl
pretending to be Makoto Kino from Sailor Moon.'

Well, it was all or nothing.  Tannim assumed a casual stance.  "I warn
you, the Hiten Mitsurugi Ryu style is a killing art.  I cannot be held
accountable for my actions if I defend myself."  Tannim was sweating
bullets.  His voice was wavering.  It was a total and complete
bullshit.

suggest: It was total and complete bullshit. (drop the 'a')


But thank God for bubbleheads, because some of the girls bought it.
They moved back a few precious steps, and Tannim saw an opening.  He
posed dramatically.  "But I suppose I must end this quickly!  Hiten
Mitsurugi Ryu style final attack!"  Makoto firmed her stance, while the
rest of the girls took a few more steps away.

Tannim acted like he was winding up for some spectacular attack with
his
arms, but he was really getting his feet into a runner's starting
position.  "Shining, Sta-- hey, what's that over there?"  This was
delivered with complete conviction, shocked look, widened eyes, and
finger pointing behind them.

Bless their mallrat hearts, every one of them fell for it.  For the
third time that day, Tannim took off like a shot (something he seemed
to
be getting rather good at).  By some quirk of fate, the girl claiming
to
be Makoto was smack dab in the middle of the biggest hole in the girls'
perimeter.  He actually had to bowl her over as she was starting to
face
forward in order to escape.

"I accept your challenge!"  Tannim shouted as he ran away as fast as
his
feet could possibly carry him.  He didn't dare look behind.

He barely made it to his car and out of the parking lot.

---

It was a bruised and weary Tannim that climbed the stairs leading to
his
apartment.  When he tried to use his key to unlock the door, he found
that it was already open.  He was in the process of recalling how, in
his mad dash to leave had had forgotten to lock the door, when he
finally spotted someone else in his apartment.

"Greetings!"  She cheerfully proclaimed.  "I am the Goddess--"

"Belldandy?!"

No, silly! It's Verandu!
(sorry, I can't remember the exact spelling)


---

Authors Notes:  I've been trying to learn, and I hope this is better
than my past offerings.  As per the norm, this is just for fun, and not
meant to be taken too seriously.  This was mostly an experiment to see
if I could actually construct some sort of plot.  A lot of various
ideas
I've had over time are going into this, so hopefully things will work
out.  Please, feel free to let me know what you think at
tannim_murphy@yahoo.com, or you can check my other stories out at
http://www.fanfiction.net/u/126066/ if you were so inclined.

I am, but this goes on the pile about three items down (to other items to
C&C, including part two of this piece, and wrap up work on some of my own
stuff).


And yes, I do take requests to improve my grammar.


Well, that's what the C&C is for, but your grammar is actually quite
good, from what I've seen.

Later,
Rick "Strike like banana, sting like eggplant!" Spiff

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