Sly's Big Movie
|Xanadu story universe|
Author: JT Fox
"Hey kids, and welcome to the Sly Fox show! I'm Sly, it's nice to meet you all!" I grinned, standing in front of the bathroom mirror.
Coughing a bit I took a few more deep breaths. Between the helium I had breathed in and the mask I was wearing, my throat wasn't having the best time of it's life right now. Ah well, it was worth it. As they say, the show must go on.
Of course, I'm not really doing a show, it's more of a performance of sorts. You see, I'm...
Sorry, I'm getting ahead of myself! I'm John Copper, it's nice to meet you. I'm a guest here at Xanadu. For those of you who haven't heard, Xanadu is a HUGE costume convention. From Fantasy to Sci-Fi, you'll find what you love here.
Which is where I come in. I've always been a big fan of old cartoons. I remember growing up as a kid watching those old Loony Toons reruns from the sixties, wishing I could be like them. The characters in those cartoons always seemed to be carefree and laid back, but also real. Unlike these teen melodramas played out on the kid networks nowadays, the cartoons of my childhood had a sort of soul that I haven't seen since. No matter what position these characters were put in, they could always make it through. And most importantly...
They were funny! You can't beat their comedy. I've always been a class clown myself, but nowhere near as funny as they were, not even close. But hey, that's what Xanadu is for. If you remember what I said earlier, Xanadu is a COSTUME convention. What's my costume? Glad you asked.
For the past six months I've been working on a toon costume. It's an interesting angle to work from as far as costume design goes. I'm not trying to make a costume of what, say, Bugs would look like in real life. Rather, I'm trying to give off the impression of what a cartoon character would look like as if it was drawn in the real world. Sort of a real life, "Who framed Roger Rabbit?"
So, I finally decided upon a sort of skin tight body suit. Only, toons don't have muscles, so I had to build something to make me appear more smooth. So for the last six months I've created this sort of body mesh that gives me zero definition. Then I just put the suit over that, and it looks like I'm as flat as a piece of paper from most angles.
Then of course, the next toon trick was to ditch the cliché fursuit coverings and instead paint my outfit. Nothing but cotton cloth and paint on this guy. All his different fur markings were done in the same solid color of paint. The overall effect even surprised me. From the right angle I can actually look like I just leaped off a frame of celluloid.
However, being in a costume at Xanadu is only half the fun. Like I was saying earlier, this is also a performance of sorts. It's not enough to be dressed up like a cartoon character, you've got to act that part! And for me, that means acting like Sly Fox.
I introduced myself as John Copper, but I really should have said, 'I'm Sly Fox and it's nice to meet you.' You see, I made my toon suit to look like Sly. If you haven't guessed it by now (and if you haven't I seriously suggest you seek help immediately), Sly is a fox. And, for you really slow learners, that means my toon outfit is of a fox as well.
Now, Sly isn't exactly like playing the part of Bugs or Daffy, in fact, I made Sly up. He's based on several unnamed foxes that stared in some old cartoons, but these foxes usually lasted one episode and never had large roles.
So, I came up with Sly. He's a fox, and so I first started with Loony Toon's basic archetype for foxes at the time. I found they all had one thing in common, and it happen to be they all loved chickens. Sly's roles would have been sneaking onto farms and stealing chickens. It's the fox's equivalent to an honest blue collar job. To help Sly out, I made his trademark trait his slyness, hence the name.
Farms in those cartoons were always hard to sneak onto, so I also helped Sly out by making him a little manipulative. He's got a habit for tricking the other characters in his cartoons do what he wants them to. Of course, I want to get across that Sly isn't evil, he just wants some chicken! If Sly's goal was say, to save the world, he'd use the same set of tools to do it. In the end he always works towards what he thinks is the greater good.
Jeez, look at me, I'm rambling. Sly's just a basic character I made for the con. I've always liked foxes, and I didn't want to be tied down by a definite character like Bugs Bunny. The real challenge of playing a toon is to keep acting like one. You've got to remember your character, remember what mannerisms your toon has, you can't forget to wag your tail from time to time, you've got to talk like him... walk like him... think like him... and on top of that remember all your jokes!
"Yip!" I shouted out loud just thinking about it.
I sighed, fixing my mask and looking into the mirror. Sly looked back at me, grinning, just like his mask always did.
"Grr... easy for you Sly, walk around the con and have a good time, I'm the one who has to do all the acting."
I couldn't help but chuckle. I did have most of this toon thing down. I was yipping and growling like a fox already, and my basic mannerisms matched Sly's (though it's no wonder why, I created him after all.) I even could remember to wag my rear back and forth from time to time.
"You really should stop worrying Sly." I said to myself.
Heh, now there's another thing I had down. Cartoons never kept a single thought in. I mean, how could they keep any thoughts in? The audience would never get to know the toon's thoughts.
Ah well, maybe that's just what I think, after all, I am talking to myself and dressing up in a fox costume for fun. Well, it's late anyways. The con starts back up first thing tomorrow, and it's going to be Sly's first public appearance.
Slipping out of the costume I got into bed, wondering what tomorrow would hold...
BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! BEEP!
The alarm clock's wail filled the room. What was I thinking, setting it so early... I rolled over and slammed down the snooze button. Man, times like this I envied Sly. If his alarm clock as giving him grief he'd probably just pull out a giant mallet and smash the thing to bits. And of course, he wouldn't have to go out and buy a replacement one either. Oh no, his same old clock would be sitting there as usual the next episode, in full repair. Ah well, see you in ten...
BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! BEEP!
This alarm clock was extra noisy, hard to ignore, just my luck. Ah well, I should probably be getting up about now anyways if I want to have time to run down and score some of that free breakfast. No doubt all the good stuff's taken already though, with a convention this sized. Hmm... I wonder if I should risk trying to eat through my costume's mask. Yikes, milk and cereal in that thing!? No way!
Speaking of the mask, where was it anyways, I could have sworn I left it right here by my bed...
"Shit shit shit!" I said, noticing what happened to it. My pillow and fallen off the bed and landed right on my mask! Oh man, there were goose feathers everywhere! Cheap pillow! Gah, this is going to take forever to clean up... What was I thinking putting it on the floor.
I spent the next few minutes trying to get the feathers out of the mask. They got mixed in with the fabric pretty good. Ah well, I'll get the rest out later, right now all I want is some breakfast. I'll come back and get my costume on then.
Man, the hotel was PACKED! People everywhere! Even this early in the morning a lot of people were in costume, especially the furries. I couldn't believe it, there was one guy in a dragon costume actually chowing down on syrup covered pancakes through his costume's mask. Good thing I wasn't entering the overall best costume competition, I'd be blown out of the water already.
The dinning area was already filling up, and there weren't any spare tables. After getting myself some pancakes and an omelet, I considered just going up and eating back in my room. However, a guy at an empty table waved me over.
"Hey, you need a place to sit?" he asked. Man, it must have been written all over my face.
"Yeah, thanks a bunch." I said, setting my plate down and taking a seat.
The guy I was sitting across from was in his mid twenties. He had messy jet black hair as well as a bit of a goatee. A pair of square glasses rested on the end of his nose as he took a bite of his muffin. He was wearing an official Xanadu Tee-Shirt and a pair of cargo pants. Overall he seemed like a pretty friendly fellow. I could tell from his accent that he was a native.
"Are you from around here?" I asked inquisitorially, not wanting to make a false assumption about that guy.
He nodded, setting his muffin down, "Yeah, I rent an apartment a few blocks from here actually."
I tilted my head, this was odd, he lived within walking distance and still had a room at the hotel. He apparently was very good at reading faces. Leaning forward he whispered,
"Hey, I don't have a room here but I'm still taking advantage of the free breakfast, you know, since it's right next to the con? Don't rat me out alright?"
"Sure thing." I took a bite of my omelet, "Say, I didn't catch your name."
"Oh, how rude of me! My name's George Real." He held his hand out to shake.
I shook it firmly. "Nice to meet you George. I'm John."
George and I talked about this and that. He had come to Xanadu simply on a whim. It was close to his house, and he wasn't doing much. We chatted a bit about the many activities that were planned that day. Suddenly though, he asked me a question out of the blue.
"Are you a furry?" he said questioningly.
"What?! What makes you say that?" I asked, a bit too defensive.
"Well, you've been staring at that squirrel and wolf for the past ten minutes."
I went almost as red as Sly's ink.
"Err, it's actually a long story." I stammered.
"Well, we've got a while, lets hear it."
Still a rosy shade, I started my story.
"I've got a pretty conservative family. You know, white picket fence, the American dream, suburban life with 2.5 kids." He gave me a look. "I'm joking, the national average is 2.5. Rest assured, I've got one full brother, and one full sister. Anyways, my parents never have been one to understand my hobbies, so they were a little surprised when I told them I was coming out here for a convention." I sighed, "My little brother found out about Xanadu too. He asked some friends of his what Xanadu was, and wouldn't you know that one of them told him it was a furry convention. And thanks to the wonders of the internet, my brother thoroughly knows what a furry is."
I took a break to shovel the rest of my pancakes down the chute. "So yeah, pretty much my entire family thinks I'm some sort of freaky furry pervert."
George laughed, "The internet is way too accessible."
I chuckled a bit along with him, "So George, got any family?"
"Yeah, but unlike you my fine furry friend." I gave him a playful glare, "I've moved out. My family's in Daytona Beach."
"So, what exactly do you do George?" I asked.
He shrugged, "This and that. I'm kind of a freelancer, you?"
"Oh, I'm still in high school." I admitted. Before he could say anything I quickly changed the subject, "So you into costumes that much?"
"Naw, but nothing against them either, besides, costumes are only the main attraction 'round here. There's plenty of stuff to go around."
I glanced down at my watch, "Whoa hey, it's getting pretty late!"
He stroked his goatee a bit, "Alright John, I'll be seeing you."
I reached into my pocket, pulling out a spare key, "If someone catches you squatting in the dinning room again, just say you're with me alright?"
George looked down at the keycard, "For reals? Thanks John!"
"I'll catch you later!" I shouted, clearing my plate and heading up to my room.
Man, I can't believe I let time get away from me like that, the convention hall opened twenty minutes ago, and the events were going to start soon too. I needed to switch into my costume, and fast! Of course I had no intention of entering 'Most Realistic' or 'Best Group' or even 'Most Original' or 'Best In Character.' Like you might have pieced together by now, I am hoping for a shot at 'Best Performance!' And even if I didn't win, I was confident after my months of practice I'd be able to put on one heck of a show!
Rushing into my room I emptied my pockets on the dresser, and started to get undressed. Unfortunately one of the downsides of my fox costume is that it's very tight, and doesn't have much room for clothes under it. So, once I was in my boxers I started to pull up the costume, making sure it was on well enough that I could stay in it for hours. Rushing, I slipped the mask on and straightened it out.
I trotted into the bathroom, "Well Sly, lets have a look at yourself..."
"Yip!" I said enthusiastically as turned to look in the mirror. I had actually pulled it off! Grinning back at me was the cell shaded fox that had been bouncing around in my subconscious for God knows how long. I was really here at Xanadu, and I was really Sly Fox! I never thought I'd actually be able to do it! Somehow, no matter how the day turned out, I doubt I was going to be more happy then right now, staring through my mask's eyeholes into my costumed reflection.
Now I just needed to get my act ready. Like a magician's bag of tricks, I had made secret compartments on my costume. They were kind of like unseen "pockets" on the material, so when I snatched something out of them it gave the illusion of a cartoon character pulling the item out of thin air. Lets see, I had my 'magic' bouquet of flowers, a small rubber chicken, a really big fish, whoopee cushion (stored right below my tail of course), and last but not least, my toon gloves.
Come to think of it, these gloves are what really started this whole costume. When I heard about Xanadu I started thinking of a comedy routine I could do, and instantly recognized the potential a living cartoon character could have. Of course, way back then I didn't know the first thing about costuming, so I decided rather than to dress the part of a costume, I would just have something to represent myself as one. And if there's one things that is distinctly toon, it's their gloves.
I spent so much time on this original pair of toon gloves that I decided to include them on Sly. Cartoon foxes usually just had their paws, and so my gloves are something that's distinctly mine, or rather, distinctly Sly's.
As I sucked in a small cartridge of helium, I took one last look around my hotel room. It might just have been my lightheadedness due to the gas, but I felt almost ominous leaving, like my room wasn't going to be the same when I came back. All that was in here was my two suit cases, one for my normal clothes and one for Sly and his goodies. Besides that, the room was your standard hotel room. Ah well, I'm just being paranoid.
"As they say in the business, let's start the show!"
Loud, noisy, chaotic, only a hint of order, half the people acting like they were totally out of their mind with more types of weirdos than a survey. Yep, a typical convention on a super duper gigantic scale. Well, I'm sure there's place for me here somewhere in this mess of fur, scales, and imagination. But first of all, I've got to get registered.
Heading down to the front desk I saw row after row of registration tables. Eventually, after waiting behind a pair of firemen in dalmatian costumes for a few minutes, it was my turn to register. The person behind the counter was wearing a pair of rabbit ears. I chuckled, even the workers here knew how to get into the spirit of things.
The woman looked up, "Name?"
"Sly Fox!" I yipped proudly.
She wasn't amused and rolled her eyes, "Real name?"
"John Copper" I said, with less enthusiasm.
She asked me a few more questions, and then finally handed over my conbadge. It had all my character information on it, as well as a Polaroid of my face. I was actually a little proud of it, but decided no self respecting toon would walk around with a conbadge, and so I slipped it into one of my 'pockets'.
Now then, here I am at Xanadu... but what to do first... Well, these sort of things are always famous for their shops, I might as well check those out first. As I browsed the different kiosks I noticed not a single one of them sold anything remotely toon like. While this was kind of discouraging as far as improving my costume went, it also was nice to know that my idea was pretty original. As I was haggling with a shop keeper over an old VHS tape of Marvin The Marian's Greatest Hits, I heard something.
Spinning around, I head it again. Someone was giving me a wolf whistle. I looked for the source, and my masked eyes eventually fell upon a woman (or as far as I could tell) in a vixen costume.
"Hey there foxie, for a furry you sure are furless," she said tauntingly.
"Yip! I'm a toon, my fur's paint!" I yipped at her.
The second I opened my mouth, I wish I hadn't. I had just finished inhaling some helium, and my voice was way too high, even higher than hers. She didn't seem to catch what I said.
"Whatever you say little guy." she giggled.
"Did you hear what I said!" I said, my voice cracking, "I'm not, arf, a furry. I'm a toon!"
"Oh is that what you call it? Well, if you ever want to grow up, give me a call." she taunted, turning around and heading into the crowd.
Well this was going grand... Ah well, she's just one person. Probably a dude underneath the costume anyways. Still, it would be nice for someone to recognize me as a toon. Maybe I'll have better luck over at the performance area.
"Hey fox, I didn't realize they had chicken on the menu this morning!" someone yelled at me.
Once again, I spun around, hoping my sense of deja vu was nothing more than that. I was pleasantly surprised. This time it was a man in a Storm Trooper costume trying to get my attention.
He mentioned chicken, so I pretended to act excited as I trotted over, "Chicken!? Where!?"
The Storm Trooper laughed, "All over your face from the looks of it fox."
"The name's Sly, Sly Fox. And what are you talking about? Yip!" I asked.
He pointed around his mouth, "Chicken feathers, all over your muzzle squirt."
Oh come on, I wasn't that short... wait, chicken feathers? "Yip, what the?" I plucked one off my muzzle with my gloves.
Shoot! It was those pillow feathers again! I had forgotten to take them off this morning before I changed into the costume. Too late to fix it now, I better just play it off like I meant to do it.
"Oh, that? I just love chicken! Yip, the feathers stick to my muzzle after almost every meal." I explained.
"Heh, you're one crazy fox Sly. Nice meeting you." said the trooper, patting me on the back.
"Nice meeting you..." I trailed off, hoping he'd fill in his name.
"Call me TK472. I'm part of the fourth Storm Trooper battalion here."
We shook hands, or rather, he shook my paw and I shook his hand, and then we parted ways. I guess everyone wasn't so bad here. Man, I can't believe I forgot about the goose feathers though...
I looked down to check my watch, before realizing that Sly didn't wear one. Whoops! Looking up on the wall I found one. It looks like I had about an hour before my performance, and then I'd still have plenty of time before the award ceremony and lunch. I decided to see the sights.
It turns out that T472 hadn't been joking, there were several other Storm Troopers here today. As I took a walk through the artist's gallery I noticed another two troopers. The art gallery was a big disappointment in my book, not a single artist there was a cartoonist! Everyone's into these super realistic painters and such nowadays.
At least I wasn't the only person there with the courage to make a fool out of themselves, I rubbed shoulders with a man in a unicorn headband in the art gallery and even spotted a quad of Care Bears mingling in the crowd.
Maybe it was that whole atmosphere of making a fool of yourself, but suddenly I found myself doing something unexpected.
"Yip yap yoop woop eep ack oh neep noop uup bip bop bow!"
How's that for unexpected? Well, everyone was kind of staring at the crazed guy in the fox costume, might as well put on a show for them. It was weird, I found myself running on full auto, almost as if I was in someone else's body. I let go of my usual stage fright and started bouncing around telling jokes. It was actually kinda fun.
"Hey there everybody! Having a good time today? Great! Now then, step right up, it's time for the Sly Fox show!" I shouted loud enough for people to hear.
A few people laughed! Oh man, this was perfect!
"So, why'd the fox cross the road?" I paused, "Because he was chasing after the chicken of course!"
Alright, opened with a lame joke, but it still got a few chuckles, now I just need to get the audience involved.
"So, we have anyone here from Florida?" I asked, in that same lame stand up comic way of talking. A few people raised their hands.
"Ah, I feel sorry for you guys. They've got all sorts of freaks living here, just look around." Heh, that got me a few nasty looks. And for the punch line... "Of course, I've been living here all my life."
Ah ha, that got me some chuckles! Great, now a good sized crowd was forming. I quickly stepped out into the crowd, and took the hand of a young woman with some fox ears on.
"Well, nice to see someone else here has a good taste for costumes. Now than sweetie, why don't you tell the crowd what your name is?" I said, grinning as I held my tail up like a fake microphone.
As she told the crowd her name, (which turned out to be Sue), I was working quickly and carefully behind my back. I had brought a make up kit with me, and was smearing a bit of it on each of my fingers.
Finishing up the 'interview' I asked, "Now then, would you like to be my side kick?"
She blushed, "Sure thing Mr. Fox."
I laughed, "Please Sue, call me Sly!"
"Alright Sly, what do you want me to do?" she asked.
"Well, first, we've got to make you into a toon of course! A good toon assistant has to be a toon as well!"
I quickly pulled her close, with her back to the audience. I whispered, "Hold still, this stuff will come off after the show." She nodded, and then I got to work. Using the makeup I had on my gloves I quickly colored her face red and then added a goofy grin and exaggerated eyebrows. The job was pretty rushed, but I felt it did it's purpose. Spinning her around dramatically, I showed her to the audience.
"Tada! One toonified Sue!" I shouted as the crowd cheered.
Sue had gotten into the spirit of things and let out a loud "Yip!" Looks like I had chosen the right person from the crowd after all.
After that I had her help me with a card trick, (which ended with me literally cutting the deck in two), and then I pulled a fake bouquet of flowers from underneath my gloves. The flowers worked like a Chinese fan but with a spring in it, so when I pulled them out it looked as if they came from nowhere.
"Ladies and Gentletoons, get another round of applause for Sue!" I said, wrapping up my presentation.
She went back into the crowd, blushing beneath her facepaint. As the crowd dispersed, I couldn't believe how well that had gone. And gone on it had. I was telling jokes for a good thirty minutes. Most of my jokes weren't even that good, but something about a toon delivering a joke makes up for it. I still couldn't believe it as the crowd dispersed. Almost fifty people had stood and watched my act! A lot of people poked their heads in to see what was up as well. Err, well, alright, so maybe it wasn't fifty, but, at least twenty! Man, I made a crowd laugh, I couldn't believe it.
As I started to pack up the few things I had pulled out, someone came up to me wearing an official Xanadu staff badge.
"That was a great performance you put on there Sly." he said casually.
"You really thought so?" I asked, surprised that someone working here would be interested in me.
"Yeah, I do. So, why'd you do it?"
"Well, I'm going to be in the performance competition later today, and wanted to practice." I lied. I had practiced until I could tell jokes in my sleep, this was for the fun of it.
"Oh really?" He tapped on his clipboard a bit, "Well Mr. Fox, I'm sorry to inform you that all performances here had to be cleared before the convention started."
Gulp. I didn't like the sound of where this conversation was headed...
"And furthermore... I was a judge for the performance competition, and the last performance time was twenty minutes ago."
Oh shi- "You serious?"
"'fraid so Sly." Tap tap tap... Always tapping that clipboard. "But... I might have some good news."
Wait a second, was he smiling!? Oh man, I'm either in deep or...
"Turns out you still won something after all." he chuckled.
"Yip!? Say what!?" I did a double take.
"There's another award that Mr. Summer's decided to give out. Best in Character."
My jaw dropped. I couldn't believe it. I was so shocked I wish I had figured out how to make the mask's jaw drop to the floor, because it would be in the basement right now if I was in a real cartoon.
"Best in character? Yip! Really?" I said, trying to hold in my excitement.
"That's right Sly. It's an over all contest rather than an event, so people will compete naturally and try and get into the spirit of things, rather than just try and win a cash prize."
Whoa, there was a cash prize involved! "Oh wow, so I won, seriously!?"
He laughed, "Not quiet. All the judges are out and about right now looking for who they think is the best. But rest assured Sly Fox, you've got my vote, and I'm sure the others will see my way. Just make sure you're at the awards ceremony today. Oh and keep your voice down."
"Yip! Will do sir!" I yipped, shouting as I ran down the hall towards the assembly hall.
As I dashed down the hall I accidentally ran head first into a horse! Err, guy in a horse costume. He nayed loudly and stood up, not wanting to accidentally stomp on me with a hoof. I stood up, dazed, admiring the guy's hulking costume.
"You alright there little fox?" said a woman next to the horse in a jockey outfit.
"Arf, I'm fine Ms, thank you." I growled, giving the horse another look over. Impressive costume indeed...
The woman pat the man in the costume on the back, "How about you Charger, you alright?"
The horse simply nayed and got down on all fours, and headed in the opposite direction as me.
As I walked to the assembly hall (now at a much slower pace), I realized how lucky I was to get nominated for my award. That guy was walking around on all fours talking like a horse! And yet... wow, they picked ME for being in character! Well... technically I guess they picked Sly... Err, I dunno, that makes my head hurt.
"Serves me right, I've got ink for brains." I muttered to myself. "Cartoons talk to themselves all the time, I should have been doing the same. Ah well, never too late to start."
I was almost to the convention hall now, obviously a bit jittery as I walked inside.
The assembly hall was PACKED with people! I found a space to stand near the back. Every chair was long taken up by now. Not to mention the idiot who picked the seating didn't take tails into account. "Hee hee, plus if I do get called up everyone will notice me..."
Or maybe they wouldn't... Hmm... I was supposed to be acting in character. A sly fox sneaking from the back to the front of the room without being seen? Sounded like a fun challenge alright. I thought out how I was going to do it as Winters gave his opening speech. I wonder what my opening joke should be...
Suddenly, everything was very very wrong. Sly's whole body felt like it had been zapped with a bolt of lightening. He could literally see stars as his head spun. Everything was suddenly much much louder. Clenching his ears, Sly never saw the large bear coming at him from behind. The bear knocked the poor fox to the ground as he tried to regain control of his senses.
Pure panic broke out in the assembly hall. People were running in every direction, wild animals had suddenly appeared out of nowhere, and Sly swore he heard weapons fire as he tried to get up. Just as he was about to get back on his paws a large blue hedgehog stepped on his back, knocking him back to the ground.
"Yip! Watch out!" shouted Sly, trying desperately to get back up. It was no use now. Wave after wave of panicked con-goers were trampling the fox and any attempt for him to get up.
"Arf! Not the tail, ouch, that doesn't bend like that, yip, watch it buddy!" yipped Sly, trying get somebody, anybody's attention. It didn't dawn on him at the time, but for the amount of people stepping on him, he should have been unable to talk, and probably dead.
Sly eventually did pass out though. Several minutes later the fox moaned, peeling himself off the assembly hall floor. The vulpine had been literally flattened into a pancake, and was now slowly rising off the floor.
"Yip... anyone see who was driving that train...?" moaned Sly, standing up weakly.
Sly then took his thumb and stuck it in the end of his muzzle. Blowing hard, the red fox started to inflate back out to his usual size and shape. Plopping back down on the floor properly now, he rubbed his neck gently.
"Yip! Much better. Now then- Wait a second, what the heck did I just do!?"
Sly quickly looked down at himself. He was perfectly fine now, only a few bumps and scratches here or there. Not only that though, but his costume was undamaged. In fact, it looked great! But... different. It look actually cell shaded now, like someone had given Sly a fresh coat of paint. Holding up his gloved paw, Sly noticed that there was a thick black line around the edge of his glove. Turning his paw over, he noticed the black line always stayed on the outside of his paw, just like an outline.
"Yip, no way..." Sly's eyes grew wide, the size of dinner plates.
"What the heck happened to me?" he asked himself out loud. "And why am I talking to myself anyways...? Man, I need to get out of this costume..."
Sly reached down and tugged on one of his toon gloves. The thing wouldn't budge. Sly started to growl as he tugged on it. The material just wouldn't slide off his hand.
"Someone coat my paw in ACME glue? Come on..." Sly once again tugged at the material. It started to stretch. Sly suddenly yipped as he realized his glove had stretched out over two feet.
"Yip! It wasn't that stretchy when I put it on! I better just go for the mask!" Sly reached up and grabbed hold of his muzzle, pulling tightly.
Sly wasn't sure what was worse. The fact that his muzzle was stretching out a full foot, or the fact that he could feel through his toon gloves, and through his mask, to feel his muzzle being stretched.
"Yip yip yip! This doesn't make any sense! What in the world is going on!?" Sly started to hyperventilate as he watched his muzzle bounced back into position as he let go.
"Oh man oh man oh man... pull it together Sly!" he shouted at himself.
"Wait a second, my name's not Sly, it's... uh... Drat, I knew it a second ago... Come on, it had a J in it right? Wait no, it started with an S... didn't it?" Sly paced about, voicing all his inner most thoughts to the audience to help the plot along.
It was about that time he crossed a mirror.
"Hmm... lets take a look..." Sly muttered as he trotted over. As he looked into the mirror, Sly saw his reflection grin back at himself. His reflection however, wasn't that of a boy in a fox costume. Rather, it looked as if someone had taken the time to draw in a cartoon fox onto a photograph. He looked just like a cartoon fox standing in the real world. Sly recognized the effect. They used it in "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" a couple years back. Suddenly, the gears started turning in Sly's mind, and everything started to fall into place. Everything made sense now.
"Haha, of course! Those writers must have finally scored me a movie deal. Sly Fox at Xanadu. Boy turns into a toon fox in a live action world. Instant hit."
Sly's tail started wagging a bit peeved though as he checked his unseen 'Pockets' and underneath his gloves, "Pff, just like those writers, everyone gets a script except the one fox who needs it."
Sly looks from side to side, making sure no one's around before leaning close. He then turns to you, the reader, and whispers, "Hey folks, I'm just making this up as I go, so hang with me alright?" He then gives you a sly grin and a wink, before heading back into the story.
"Now lets see here..." said the Fox to himself, "If I was a hot shot Hollywood writer, what would I have the lead roll do next? Hmm, I don't see any foxy dames, and I don't see any giant killer robots, or any foxy dames, and I don't hear a time bomb, or any foxy dames, there aren't any giant flaming buses, or foxy dames. Hmmmm, nope, no foxy dames, I gotta have a word with the writer during the intermission."
"Man, I'm so giving them a few choice PG rated words when I catch those writers..." grumbled Sly as he started to walk across the convention hall. The way he walked his body seemed to have less resistance to the ground than a normal person, making you ponder if he was actually there, or just skillfully drawn into a movie frame.
As he walked down the hallway, a series of characters were watching him, waiting, lying in wait. Oblivious to the trap, Sly kept trotting along whistling his theme song to himself. After a few short range radio communications were sent out, the trap was sprung.
Sly almost didn't see it coming. A red laser beam shot out of no where and almost nailed Sly. For some unknown reason though the toon happened to be bent picking up a spare coin.
"Yip!? What's the big idea!?" Sly took several steps back as four more shots rang out. The enemies had shown themselves by now too. There were four stormtroopers approaching Sly in their matching white armor.
"Woah, hey, guys, I don't want any trouble. You got the wrong guy." Sly did a fake cough, the way an actor warms up his voice and waved his hand, "This isn't the fox you're looking for."
Another blaster shot rang out. Sly somehow manged to duck just in time. The fox was looking nervous.
"Oh man oh man oh man, how am I going to get out of this..." Sly started to backpedal, not looking where he was going, "Ah well, the main character always makes it through somehow..."
He gulped, "Err, except for those times where there's overwhelming force and he gets captured... or when someone cheap shots him..."
Sly was about to continue on his nervous rant when a rifle butt hit the toon on the back of the head. The fifth and final stormtrooper, hidden up until this point, came out and promptly captured the toon.
Sly rubbed his head, waking up. "Where the fox am I?" He yipped softly.
The room was pitch black, not a single ray of light. Standing up, he started feeling around. The room he was in was tiny, almost closet sized. However, when he pushed on the fourth wall, he heard a definite "Ouf!" He had hit something! Or rather, someone!
"Hello? Who are you?" asked Sly quietly, not wanting to disturb the atmosphere given off by the darkness.
"My... my name's George. George Real. What's your name?" asked the voice in the darkness.
"Sly Fox, it's a pleasure." Sly fumbled around in the darkness and eventually found George's hand, shaking it. Sly's hand felt odd to George, like shaking a rubber glove and yet, different.
"So, where are we anyways?" asked Sly.
George answered, "In all honesty? I think we're in a closet. Those Stormtroopers call it their brig, but I think they're just making do with what they have."
"Ah, I see..." Sly trailed off. "You know, we could really use some light in here."
"Got any matches? Or a lighter?" asked George hopefully.
Sly was grinning from ear to ear. "No, but I do have an idea."
In that instant, a lit light bulb appeared over Sly's head, lighting up the whole room. "Ah ha!" Sly reached up and snatched it before it had time to disappear. As he held it in his glove the room was now fully lit up, revealing George.
The guy Sly was standing across from was in his mid twenties. He had messy jet black hair with a white strip through it as well as a bit of a goatee. A pair of bent square glasses rested on the end of his nose. He was wearing an official Xanadu Tee-Shirt and a pair of cargo pants.
"Deja vu..." muttered Sly.
The most striking feature of George though, would have to his large furry skunk tail. The tail's black fur perfectly matched the man's black hair, including the tell tale white stripe running through both his hair and his tail. Currently, his tail was curled up behind him and wagging frantically.
"Blaagh! What the hell!?" shouted George, taken back by what had just transpired.
Sly screwed the bulb into the empty socket above the two of them, whipping his gloves off, "What's wrong?"
"What the heck are you!?" yelled George, his eyes wide as he stared at the strange fox creature.
"Err, I'm a fox, thank you very much." retorted Sly, crossing his arms defensively.
"I mean, how'd you do that... and, why do you look like that...?"
"I'm a toon." Sly gave George a raspberry through his muzzle.
"A toon... you mean like a cartoon?" asked George.
"No, I mean like the tall redwood tree native to Asia." Sly grinned playfully, "I swear, you've got a toon of bricks for a brain."
George chuckled, "You're kinda funny, Sly was it?"
Sly laughed, "You got it George."
George nervously ran his hand through his tail, "Man, and I thought I had my change bad."
Sly's head tilted, "Your change?"
"Yeah. My tail. I was trying it on at a shop when all the craziness broke out." said George.
"Wait, you didn't always have a tail?" asked Sly, cluelessly.
"Of course I didn't always have a tail! I'm not supposed to have a tail!" yelled George.
"Waddya mean? If you didn't have one, the animators wouldn't have given you one."
George's jaw dropped. What do you say to logic like that? This guy was something else... Probably insane too... Ah well, for better or worse, he was stuck with him.
Sly was looking around the room for anything useful for their escape. "I don't want to be here any longer than we have to..." The room was some sort of utility closet. Brooms, mops, that sort of thing. Now with the light on, it was actually pretty spacious.
"I've been in here for a while now. They've got two troopers by the door. We're stuck in here Sly."
Sly started to look over the different supplies in the room. "Nothing amazing... Ah ha!" He picked up several cans of paint. "Now we're in business!" Sly grins, peeling back the labels on the cans. Where before they were of a generic Home Depot brand, they now read, "ACME Toon Paint".
George didn't seem to notice the change. "So, what's some paint going to do us?"
Sly went over to some buckets in the back of the room, "Save our butts for starters."
Sly grinned, "Hey kid, you star in a crossover before?"
"What the heck are you talking about?" asked George, having no clue what he meant.
"You know, when two series mix with each other. For some reason or another, there's a Star Wars crossover with my series right now. We've just got to act our way through it."
"Your series...?" echoed George.
"It's easy, these crossovers don't usually stick to their plot that much, so you just have to make a few references and you're fine." Finished with his bucket of paint, Sly held up the spoils of his work. He had successfully turned the metal janitor's pale into a white painted janitor's pale.
Picking it up he grinned, "Perfect." He slid the bucket over his head, "These Stormtroopers will never see through this disguise.
George wasn't sure which was more surprising, how odd Sly was acting, or how two cartoon eyes were now on the outside of his bucket.
Sly took the bucket off, "Now then, your disguise will be more tricky. I'm out of white paint and so you're going to have to be Darth Vader. Luckily we've got plenty of black left over."
Sly started to liberally coat the insides and outsides of the second bucket. "Ah, this is a great start, but Darth always wore black. Your blue shirt and khaki pants aren't going to cut it George."
"Err, what do you suggest then Sl- Gah!" George tried hopelessly to block the black paint that was raining down on him. Sly had just thrown the entire bucket work of paint at him. As he pulled his hands away though, he noticed that his arms were dry, and so was his face. Looking down, he saw a perfectly coated shirt and pants, still slightly wet with black paint.
"Woah... how in the world!?" George burst out, this was all impossible!
Sly held up the empty can, "It's toon paint George."
George's jaw dropped. This was all too amazing. How in the world was Sly doing all this? If the change could give George a tail it would probably make a con-goer into a cartoon, but still, this fox was just unimaginable. Looking down at his shirt, George was amazed at Sly's handywork. His shirt was now black for sure, but it was toony too, just like the person standing before him. It was kind of weird wearing these new clothes, especially with their still damp coat of toon paint soaking into his skin. Going along with Sly was a far better idea than waiting in this place forever, and George might as well put his faith in the toon.
"Alright Sly, how do we get out of here? You mentioned a crossover or something?" George asked.
"Yip, right! Basically, the Star Wars characters feel out of place in my story universe, so they're attacking guys like you and me. To escape, we just need to make them think that we're from their story universe. You know, like a Jedi Mind Trick? Basically, just put this helmet on and breath really deeply, alright?"
Sly put him bucket on, and then slammed the Vader bucket on George. Standing in front of the door, George started breathing heavily. Sly on the other hand stood at attention.
"Alright, just walk forward, and say as many Star Wars quotes as you can." ordered Sly.
"Err, Sly, I can't see in this thing." complained George.
"Just trust me alright?" Sly said, as he knocked on the door.
A stormtrooper opened the door and looked inside. Before he had a chance to say anything, Sly waved his paw, "These aren't the droids you're looking for." Almost instantly, the Stormtrooper fell into a sort of trance, ignoring the two bucketed idiots and believing that a comrade and Lord Vader. The two started to walk away.
"I find your lack of faith disturbing."
"May the Force be with you."
"Help me Obi-Wan Kenobi. You’re my only hope."
"I suggest a new strategy, R2. Let the wookiee win."
"The Force is strong with this one."
"Do, or do not, there is no try."
"That’s no moon, it’s a space station."
The two were almost out of range of the stormtroopers when something one of the troopers said made both Sly and George's heart sinks.
"Aren't you a little short for a stormtrooper?"
Sly threw off his bucket, "Run!" George followed suit as the stormtroopers gave chase. Sly was an expert at running away it seemed, swiftly hiding behind different objects and well, being sly as he sneaked from cover to cover. At first George found it hard to keep up. But after a few minutes of fleeing he learned how Sly ran. It was a weird sort of run, like he wasn't really pushing off the ground, just drawn that way. Of course, George couldn't do that himself, he wasn't a toon, but his shoes started to feel a little slick after running for a while. Some of the toon paint must have gotten coated on the underside. He couldn't help but feel a bit lighter too. Maybe toon clothes didn't weigh anything? He shrugged it off as him and Sly dove behind a shop kiosk. The troopers ran by, not noticing their hiding spot.
"Find them and contact General Revan!" Squaked one of the Troopers and they spread out of frame.
After staying hidden until the Trooper's footsteps could no longer be heard, George and Sly slowly peeked from behind the kiosk. George looked at Sly. "General Revan?"
Sly shurgged. "Meh, gotta be one of those one time references, supposed ta perk the audience's interest so they'll go see the Sly The Fox in A Galaxy Far Far Away half of the crossover."
George raised an eyebrow, "Sly, you know everyone changed here right? Not just me and you, but the stormtroopers, the people in costume, those acting in costume, everyone!"
"Now that's a weird plot device." was all Sly had to say.
"Come on Sly, this isn't your story universe or anything, this is real life!"
"Of course it is. I'm here, aren't I? Anyways, this is my movie. Of course weird stuff's going to happen. If you really don't have a tail I'm sure the writers will take it off once we finish filming."
"Filming? Sly, look around, there aren't any cameras here."
Sly actually laughed at George this time, "Of course not, I'm a cartoon!" Sly got serious though, "Look, how would we have tricked those stormtroopers if this wasn't my movie?"
George gulped, Sly had him there. How had that worked... And then there was this toon paint junk of his.
"Well Sly, err, I guess maybe it was a side effect of the change maybe...?" he said with zero confidence.
"And their blaster shots? We didn't get hit once. The good guys never do." Sly said, trying to convince George.
"Well, that's true..." George trailed off, "This... this can't be a movie!"
"Fact is stranger than fiction you know." said Sly, nodding.
"I... I guess there's a chance you're right." Maybe it was the fact that George was currently touting a large Skunk tail, but for some reason George couldn't shrug off the fox's words just yet.
Before their conversation had a chance to progress the entire kiosk suddenly burst into a flurry of splinters, "Mrrrraaagggghhh!" A huge minotaur lifted up his battle axe and got ready for another swing.
Sly and George ran for it. The hulking monster's grunts were bestial and seemed to attack anything that moved.
"What in the world!? Who was the idiot that put a CG monster in my film!" shouted Sly, ducking another huge swing by the beast.
"CG!? Sly, this is the real thing!" replied George, diving behind a costume shop's display.
"Mrraahhh!" shouted the beast, going after Sly.
"Man oh man oh man, why me?" shouted sly. "Oh wait, I'm red..." He snapped his paw, "I've got it!"
Sly pulled a red cape out from 'off screen'. Twirling it around so George and the Minotaur couldn't see him for a moment. When he came back in view, George's jaw dropped. In a matter of seconds the fox had gone from wearing nothing to what he was wearing now.
"Olay!" shouted the fox, waving the red cape around. Sly was now decked out from head to toe in the traditional bull fighting matador costume.
The minotaur did a strange sort of double take, as if another part of his brain was coming to life. Dropping his battle axe, the beast stared at Sly, his glowing red eyes full of rage.
"Olay!" yipped Sly again. It was all that the minotaur needed. He went charging, running straight for Sly. At the last second Sly pulled the cape out of the way and dove for cover. Rather than stopping, or trying to reach Sly with his arms, the minotaur just kept running until he hit another kiosk.
"Man, how'd he do that?" George whispered to himself from the safety of the costume rack he was hiding in. "Wait a second, why am I talking to myself anyways?"
Back at the fight, the minotaur had regained his composure. Sly was once again waving his red cape, "Olay olay!" The minotaur charged again, without thinking. Of course, Sly jumped out of the way just in time. Once again, the minotaur kept charging forward, getting his horns stuck in an artist's display board.
Sly took this chance to trot over to George, "Err, this doesn't seem to be working, you got any bright ideas?"
"What, who me?" George asked, going pale. This was all impossible!
"Yeah, come on, these CG monsters aren't all that smart, we've just got to trick him somehow."
"But I err, he's just a computer model...? But, I don't know the first thing about fighting monsters."
Sly hurried off, "Well think of something, I'm all out of ideas!"
Sly ducked behind a display sign as the minotaur struggled to get himself free. He looked around to make sure no one was watching, and then turned to you.
"Don't worry folks, I can get us out of this easily, but I wanna give George a chance to come up with something. Side kicks gotta do their part too you know?"
"Mrrroooah!" yelled the beast, finally getting free. It charged after Sly time and time again. Each time the toon fox would dive out of the at the last minute. In typical bull fashion the minotaur would keep charging and run into yet another display.
George stroke his tail, "This is too much... How exactly are we supposed to stop it?" Not quite sure why he was talking out loud so much, George got to planning. "Well, lets see... Earlier we dressed up as characters from Star Wars, and those guys actually were fooled by it. Maybe we could do the same sort of thing here..." George stroked his goatee a bit, "Lets see... GAH!"
George dove into the rack of costumes in surprise. Sly had led the Minotaur right into the costume shop's booth! What was he thinking!? Dashing out of the costume rack George tripped. There was something wrapped around his leg. Getting it untangled, George grabbed the thing and ran for cover, stopping near the entrance to some restrooms.
"Gah, what should I do, this is insane... How do we stop this thing?" muttered George.
"George! Do something! This bit can only go on for so long!"
"I... I don't know!" George huddled down behind a sign. "Wait a second... This bit? That's like a series of jokes on a cartoon right? Uh, can't believe I'm saying this... How'd they stop minotaur's on cartoon shows? No wait, this is like those bull fighting cartoons, not a minotaur one! Sly's the bull fighter, so he just has to... lets see, the bull fighter would always trap the bull, and lure him into a trap... That's it!"
George sprung up from behind his cover like someone put a spring in his tail, "Sly! Sly! We've got to trap this bull somewhere!"
Sly dove out of the way once again, "That's great George, but there's not exactly a bull pen here anywhere, is there?"
George ducked for cover again, "I've gotta make a bull pen... This is just great, I don't have time to do something like that... If only I could do toon things like Sly. Wait, I've got it!"
George peeled off his shirt and ran over to the bathroom door. "This thing's a toon shirt right? That means it must be made out of ink? Well, maybe I can write with it."
George started to rub his shirt on the bathroom door, writing in the word's "BULL PEN". Just as he finished writing in the last "L" George found he had used his shirt all the way up.
"Well, if toon logic holds true, then this room should be strong enough to hold a bull. Lets test it out."
George ran back over to the costume booth. "Ah ha, here we go." He ripped the red cape off a superman costume. "I might not be able to pull these things from off screen like Sly, but I am resourceful."
Running back over to the new "Bull Pen", George waved his cape, "OLAY! Over here you big oaf!"
The minotaur spun around, heading straight for George.
"Uh oh, better be careful..." whispered George to himself as he propped the door open.
The minotaur ran straight at George, at the last second George dove out of the way, just like Sly had so many times before now. The minotaur ran straight into the bathroom, charging about inside. Seconds later Sly slammed the door shut.
"Nice thinking George, that got the beast alright." grinned Sly, whipping the cape around one last time before throwing it and the matador costume off screen.
"Did it really work?" asked George, shocked, and curious at the same time. His adrenaline was finally slowing down.
"Take a look for yourself George." said Sly, opening up the door.
Behind the door, there was no longer a men's bathroom. Instead there was a miniature barn. It was incredible, the whole thing looked as if it was a scene out of a cartoon. George looked around for the minotaur, when he realized he had found it. Locked away safely in a hay covered stall was a large cartoon bull, with the same red eyes as the monster. Despite it's thrashing it didn't look like it was going to go anywhere for a while.
"That's the minotaur?" asked George, dumbfounded.
"Yup. No way he's getting out of there anytime soon." responded Sly nonchalantly.
"But but, he was a huge monster! Now he's a toon!" shouted George.
"Of course he is. This is my movie after all, and I will not be outdone by some stupid CG monster."
"But but but..." George's skunk tail wagged confused, "That actually worked...?"
"Course it did. It was your idea, wasn't it?" wagged Sly playfully.
George scratched his chest, he felt kind of naked without a shirt on. It was annoying too, his big poofy tail kept rubbing up against his back. With the monster taken care of he had time to relax, which means that he now had time to worry about more important things, like this big bushy tail.
George was wearing it when... whatever it was, happened. After that, he found the thing was fused to his spine, stuck to him tight. It wasn't until later that he had found everyone had changed. Shortly after he was captured by those damned stormtroopers, and then he met Sly. Man, that Sly, he sure was something else. A living cartoon, dang. You don't see things like that every day.
"Whatcha thinking about George?" asked Sly, his tail wagging playfully as he bounced around a bit.
"Hmm... Uh, I just kind of wanted to get a new shirt." said George, blushing slightly.
Sly bent down on the ground and picked up a black jumpsuit and tossed it to George.
"What the heck is this?" George caught the fuzzy black suit. "Wait a second, this is from that costume shop, isn't it?" It was coming back now, this is what was stuck on George's foot as he ran away.
Holding the suit up in front of him, George suddenly realized what he was looking at.
"A Skunk Suit!" He turned the fuzzy suit over, noticing the tell tale white strips on the back. His own skunk tail wagged agitatedly.
"This is that stupid suit that transformed me!" Even when it wasn't being worn, it was clear as day that this suit was missing it's tail.
"Oh really?" Sly asked slyly. "Maybe fate is trying to tell you something?" Sly grinned.
George knew what that meant! "No way! Not going to happen! Being stuck with the tail is bad enough!"
"Oh come on! At least the ears? You look weird without them."
"I look weird now!"
"Then why not go totally weird?"
"Because I'm me! And I like being me!"
"Me too! But I really do think you'd look great with it on!"
"No more costumes!" George said adamantly.
A chill wind blew through the hall as a classic Chinese Dragon flew overhead, creating a strong gust. George shivered, looking up, "Woah! A dragon!"
Sly shrugged, "Oh yay, more CG monsters. At least it's gone now."
George still was shivering, holding onto his tail, "Man, it's freezing in here... Burr..."
Sly chuckled, "Seems you're taking a liking to that tail after all George."
"Yeah yeah, laugh it up Sly." George started to make his way towards an exit, "Are we almost out of this mad house...?"
"Let's see, we had the introduction, one escape scene, a fight with a random monster, I think we have a ways to go yet before we hit the climax."
George raised his eyebrow a bit, "But the exit is just through this hall." George double checks the sign, "Jungle room? Oh right, it had that funky jungle theme to it."
George leans forward and pulls the door open. Inside the room had been changed into a giant jungle going as far as the eye could see. There were all the classic sights and sounds of a jungle, and George caught a glimpse of a large bipedal tiger stalking through the leaves. He instantly slammed the door.
"Err, lets go around!" he shouted, his tail between his legs.
Sly grinned, "Oh come on, it won't be that hard, we'd just have to fight off a few dozen wild animals, try not to get lost, and then maybe there would be the slight hope that the exit still existed on the other side."
"Very funny. Hardy har har. Well, should we head to the other side of the convention hall then?" asked George, glad that Sly was only joking about going through the room. Apparently it wasn't only people that had gotten changed.
"I think that the hotel is over this way. There's probably an exit there." suggested Sly.
"Hey yeah, and I've got a key to a room there too!" George pulls out the key that John had given him this morning, "I wonder whatever happened to that guy anyways?"
"Poor guy probably was wearing a costume. Heh, I wonder what lame thing he turned into." snickered Sly, as they headed for the hotel.
Sly and George entered the hotel, looking around. The front lobby was deserted.
"Great, just great. No one's here." moaned George.
"Maybe your friend is in his hotel room?" asked Sly.
"We might as well check." said George, pulling out the card. "Lets see, room 215."
Sly scratched his head, "Sounds familiar."
The two headed up the stairs, hugging the walls as a pair of dogs dressed as fire fighters ran out. As they got out of the stairs, they heard the elevator open. Out stepped, no, out floated an inflatable horse. He was made of clear material, and you could see right though him. He clearly didn't see them. Sly could almost hear the cymbal and snare going off in his ear.
"Man, people sure have some strange costumes here..." muttered George.
"Yeah, we could say that about you Skunky." laughed Sly.
"I told you, I was just trying the tail on!" retorted George as he slid the keycard into the door.
"Right, and I was just acting like a toon." chuckled Sly.
As George stepped into the room, he was almost surprised that nothing jumped out at them. It was just a normal hotel room. There were a pair of suitcases laid out, one with clothes and things in it, the other was empty.
"Hello? John? Anybody there?" echoed George.
Sly looked around, "I don't think anybody's home. Who's this John character anyways?"
"He's a nice guy I met at breakfast, I let it slip I was leeching a free breakfast off the hotel and he gave me a key to his room in case I got caught. I figured we could crash in his room."
"Heh, better hope he doesn't find out right?" Sly said, hopping on the bed and lying down.
"I'm sure he'd understand, if he didn't get turned into like, a minotaur or something. I never asked what his costume was." said George, looking through John's stuff.
"Ah ha, found some stuff about him!" said George, pulling some things from his suit case. "Lets see, here's his driver's licence, some family photos, and him in his costume.
George did a double take, looking down at the photo of John in a toon fox costume, and then another look at Sly.
"Sly... come check this out..." whispered George, holding the pictures out.
Sly bounced up, taking the materials from him, "Yeah, so what?"
"You're John Copper Sly..." said George solemnly.
"What are you talking about George? This is my room. I just forgot because of that hit on the head I got earlier." he handed the things back to George.
"But, this is John's room, he's on all these... things..."
George's jaw dropped as low as it's hinge would go, and then a little lower if you were paying attention. The pictures Sly had handed back to George weren't the ones he had given the fox a second ago. Instead, the pictures were stills from a cartoon, all featuring Sly in the same poses the photos had been of John. The driver's licence, now a Toon licence, featured everybody's favorite vulpine, Sly Fox.
"But... but but but... These were John's things..." The skunk tailed man spun around, digging through the suitcase. There was Sly's matador costume from earlier, and some pants with tail holes in them. There were gags in here, like trick decks of cards, and some toon paint brushes. Where was all John's stuff! It had been here a second ago!
He looked in the other bag, the empty one! Now it was full too. Inside was another assortment of jokes. It looked like a road kit for a traveling stand up act. This... this was all too much...
"Sly! Stop joking, this was John's room... IS John's room!" yelled George.
Sly shrugged, "I'm not joking. You see me laughing?"
"But, I met with him this morning! He gave me his key! This can't be your room! This was his stuff just a second ago!"
"Are you sure it really was his stuff? Maybe I was just acting the part of John. How can you be sure that wasn't just a good costume this morning?"
"But I... We hadn't changed yet." said George, sounding a bit weaker.
"No George, you hadn't changed yet. This is my movie remember? I've always been the toon."
"Right... That makes sense." echoed George.
"John was just a character. I don't need to act his part anymore, so I don't need his stuff either."
"Of course, makes sense..." repeated George, trying to grasp the situation mentally, feeling like a carpet had been pulled out from under his feet.
Sly got up and put his arm around George, "George, listen, you're a great side kick, you made this movie really interesting."
George nodded staring into space.
"You were great right after your change, I'm glad you got casted for your part. You've even grown as a supporting role. Remember catching that minotaur? You were great."
George nodded again. He was really glad that Sly thought he was performing well.
"So, here's what I'm gonna propose. Why don't you join the show on full time? You'd like that wouldn't you?"
George nodded a bit, but then said, "Err, I think I need some time to think about it."
Sly backed off and headed towards the door, "Well, this whole thing's been a survival movie from the start, so I think we better get to the climax and high tail it out of here."
George got up, "I agree. Man, I can't wait to see those credits roll so I know this thing's finally over with."
George followed after Sly. The fox seemed to know what he was doing. Well, of course he did, he was the star of the show. The hotel hallways were mostly empty, and when they did come across an unlucky victim the pair would usually not get much out of them. Everyone was clueless to what was going on. Finally, the duo made it to the front hotel.
Sly looked down at the door knob on the front door, "Here goes nothing..."
He opened it up and walked through. "Well, credits aren't rolling, we must still have to do something...." said Sly.
George scanned the parking lot. There were cops, monsters, new reporters and people EVERYWHERE! It was like a disaster had happened or something. "Didn't they know it was just a movie?"
Sly grinned, "Of course they do. They're just acting. Why else do you think they haven't gone inside yet? They're just here to make it seem like it's the real thing."
"Oh! I see, of course!" George agreed. He was glad he met Sly, or he would have been totally lost in this movie.
A nearby police officer noticed the pair emerge from the hotel.
"Hey, you two, hold up!" he shouted, "Don't move!"
George yelped and put his arms in the air. Sly stopped exactly in the position he was when the officer started yelling, not moving a millimeter, even his tail was holding still midway through the air.
The cop however, was not reaching for a gun. Instead, he was holding a clip board and some forms. Huffing and puffing, he caught his breath.
"You two! We need statements from everyone as they come out, for identification purposes. We have no idea what in the world is happening and are trying to get an idea of who's involved with this incident."
He handed the clipboard to George, "You look alright for the most part, err, that tail of yours smell?"
George took the clipboard, "Nah, lucky for me the writers knew that skunk's stink glands are in their butt, not their tail."
The officer then looked Sly over, "What the heck are you supposed to be?"
Sly did a mockingly goofy salute, "Sly Fox sir, at your service!"
"Oh great," sighed the officer, "Lost your mind too I bet?"
George slapped Sly on the back, "You kidding? Sly here's the most sane guy here."
The officer shrugged taking the clipboard back from George, "Alright, everything seems in order. Now then, I'm going to have to ask you two to stay within' the convention grounds."
As the officer walked away, Sly pulled some binoculars out (of thin air as usual) and took in the sights. George watched, feeling proud to star as a side kick on Sly's show.
"So Sly, whatcha gonna do when this movie deal is done with?" asked George.
Sly's eyeballs stuck out of the other end as he looked through the binoculars, "Hmm, I guess I'd go on and work on a TV show. Woah, looks like something's going on over there!"
Sly quickly pocketed his binoculars and started running over to the other side of the parking lot. George ran behind him, trying to keep up. He had a weird idea bouncing around in his head that he couldn't shake.
"John's character vanished once he wasn't needed anymore... I wonder if that could happen to me? Sly's said I've been doing really good so far, but the movie has to end eventually... Wait a second! This movie is a live action crossover for Sly! Once it's done with, he goes back to doing cartoons, and wouldn't need a skunk tailed side kick! I don't want to vanish like John, I better ask him about it!"
Sly stopped in a clearing near some pay phones. Sly was tapping his paw on the cement, his claws tapping loudly as he crossed his arms.
"Drat, I thought I saw a foxy dame over here." he pouted. "If Bugs Bunny can score a lady with curves why can't I?!"
George ran up, "Sly! Hold up!"
"What is it George? You didn't see a foxy dame just now did you?"
George panted, "No..." he trailed off, trying to catch his breath, "I need you to do me a favor."
Sly's ears perked up, "A favor, what sort of favor?"
"I wanna be a part of your cast, on your cartoon show." said George nervously.
Sly grinned, his ears curling up, "Oh really? You sure about that George?"
"Oh yeah Sly, definitely! I just wish I could get out of this stupid costume for you." nodded George, petting his Skunk tail, which he was making reference to.
Sly slide up next to George, "Don't worry pal, I think I can take care of it for you..."
Sly's paw reached behind George's neck, not going for the tail. Instead, the gloved paw stumbled across a shiny silver zipper which was stuck securely to the man's back. Laughing, the fox started to pull down on the zipper, and George's skin started to part. As he slid the zipper down, the man's human form was peeled away revealing something far different.
Underneath his human visage was now standing a black and white toon skunk with a bright red nose. The toon looked down at himself, surprised to see that not only was his tail in place still, but it now suited him much better. From head to toe, pointy ears to poofy tail, the toon now felt... normal.
"Shockle blu! Mousiur Sly, vat have you done?" yelped the Skunk.
Sly patted him on the back, "I just put you in your new permanent role on my cast. That costume had to go."
"Ah yes, mon ami, thank you for your kindness."
"No problem my friend. Now then, about your character though, George is a terrible name for a skunk, wouldn't you agree?"
"Wee wee! A skunk deserves fine French namé!" agreed the skunk, in a terrible French accent.
"Well, how about Serge? Serge Skunk!"
"Ah Mousiur Fox, your brilliance never ceases to amaze!" shouted Serge, grabbing Sly in a tight bear hug.
Serge dropped Sly down and looked romantically up at the sky. "Today, everyone shall remember this as the day Serge Skunk was born!" He pointed dramatically up at nothing as the camera backed out, revealing all the chaos of the convention while keeping it's focus on the small black figure. The screen faded to black as the credits started to roll.
THIS FILM IS DEDICATED TO THE CONTINUING STRENGTH AND ENDURING SPIRIT OF THOSE EFFECTED BY THE XANADU TRAGEDY
director STEVE JONES
associate producer NORMAN SMITH
serge skunk GEORGE REAL sly fox
JOHN COPPER T472
KENNY SUMMERS minotaur BEAR DAFUR police officer ALLEN PARKER
stunts IAN NAMEE DAN BENS
costume artist RAVEN THE TRICKSTER
special effects supervisor ERIC WINTERS
special thanks to ALEX WARLON
Copyright ©2007 Foxtailed Pictures All Rights Reserved
Sly blinked, trying to clear the last of the scrolling words out of his head. He hated sitting through credits. Wait a second, why was Serge's name first? Wait, Serge's Story!? This was his movie, not the Skunk's!
Rubbing his eyes he looked around for Serge, "You little traitor, where'd you go?!"
Serge too was rubbing his eyes. Ah yes, the credits, the climax of everything he'd worked for. His movie was finally finished. He couldn't help but compliment himself on that last line, great way to end it. Gah, what was Sly yipping about now? Bloody Americans.
"Sly Sly Sly, vat, did you really think those big shots in Hollyvood would give you your own colour film, in live action no less? Non, mousuir Fox, they would not trust a film such as zis to any lower calibour actour."
Sly's jaw dropped to the ground. It took the dumbstruck fox a minute to fully collect his muzzle and jaw to a point where he could speak, "But but but..."
"Sly, we go way back, but I do not recall you ever having a fascination with any bütts, except for those of chickens of course." quipped Serge.
"Serge! This was MY movie! I made YOU! This isn't fair!" yelled Sly, steam coming from his ears.
"Sly? I'm surprised, you hardly lose composour like zis." He pulled out a large stack of papers, all stabled together. The cover read, "SERGE'S STORY".
"Wha... what's that...?" asked Sly.
Serge grinned and laughed, "Why Sly, you never got a script, did you? I'm sure someone must have simply forgotten you."
"Serge, you little traitor!" Sly lunged at the Skunk, who hopped out of the way with ease.
"Sly, mon ami, I would love to stay and chat with you, but I've got a flight to catch, we start filming for my cartoon in Hollywood tomorrow!" explained Serge as he backpedaled.
A large stretch limo pulled up behind Serge, the window rolled down, and a nicely dressed man in a suit leaned out, "Serge, come on, we've got a timetable to keep!"
"Be right with you!" shouted Serge, walking up to Sly.
The skunk thrust the script into Sly's hands, "Here, you keep it." The weight of the script caused Sly to fall over backwards onto the ground.
Sly yipped and growled loudly, doing his best to curse the skunk out despite his inability to do so.
"Later Sly!" Serge yelped, hopping into the Limo from it's sun roof. Moments later it sped off.
Sly quickly flipped to the last page of the script.
ZOOM OUT ON CAR AS IT DRIVES AWAY
Serge laughs in the passenger seat
FADE IN ON SLY
SLY I... I'm not the main character...?
SLY'S TAIL WAGS CONFUSED, HIS STARES DUMBSTRUCK AT THE SCRIPT
SLY This... this isn't my movie...?
SLY TURNS AROUND AND HEADS TOWARDS THE CON, THROWING THE SCRIPT IN THE TRASH CAN.
"I never did like skunks."
As the audience clears out of the theater, or rather, the reader finishes reading the story, Sly Fox appears on the screen, grinning. He walks towards the last few words on the screen with a bucket of toon paint, and starts to write over "The End." Once he's finished, he sneaks back off the screen slyly, in his trademark fashion.
"I never did like skunks."
The Beginning. Welcome to the Sly Fox Show!