<xmp> <body> </xmp> The Witch, The Tooth, And The Dragon

The Way Back In

~Guessing A Name~

"Oh my GOODNESS! The beast STOMPED him!" shouted Hooblinka, as she was sliding down the boy's great cheek, holding onto Feebles' dragon tail and pulling him like a wagon behind her.

Hooblinka made sure she raked her nails along the boy's skin, so angry was she about the harm to her beloved familiar Scatcat-- but being so very tiny compared to the boy, he only felt it slightly-- (still, he hollered, "OUCH!" because he was a very babyish child for his age, and wailed about the littlest thing.)

Hoobie PUNCHED him in the nose while passing his honker-- "Great, MURDERING BULLY!" she cried-- but being so teeny, it might just as well have been the buzzing of a single gnat.

Of course, Feebles said nothing. Mostly he left a long and colorful STRING of flowers behind him-- his dragon mouth opened in a big 'O' of horror, fearing the boy would lash out harder at the both of them. So-- silent and flowery, he made his descent behind the wee witch who climbed back up above him and was gouging and kicking the whole way down the boy's face, his plaid shirt, and finally onto his denim pant leg.

She was digging her tiny tiny teeth into a fleshy part of the boy's thigh when she heard-- "PSSSST!" Hoobie looked at Feebles and he shrugged and shook his head. She gazed down into the area where the sound seem to be coming from, and there was TOOTH! --clinging to the chair leg and sweating MAGNIFICENTLY!

"SCATCAT, you old TRICKSTER!" cried Hoobie joyfully, as Feebles kept dancing on one leg, saying, "Shhhhhhhh! Shhhhhhhh!"

"Oh, for Pete's sake, THIS THING can't hear us. We're too small, and MILES away from those great ears of his!"

They both made their way down the chair leg to where Scat was hanging on for dear life. First Hoobie stopped and thought about it... then she HUGGED HIM anyway.

"Scat, I saw you get stomped!" she said. "Yet here you are."

"That must be because you were looking down at what was going on, Hoob. Actually, I slipped in my own drool....(you know how I drool when I'm hungry, well, it seems I do it when I'm scared as well)... and a GOOD THING too! When that spider-toy-thing made his move to crush me, I slid right off his pants in my own spittle and grabbed for this chair post."

"But how do we get BACK?" whined Feebles, who was busy tidying up his trail of flowers. "Hmmmmmmmm....." said Hooblinka. And she closed her eyes so tightly they almost disappeared, and she began to sway, humming the whole time.

"What's she DOING?" Feebles asked Scatcat. "How should I know?" Scat answered. "I only met her yesterday myself!"

Hooblinka heard them, and opened one eye and said, "I'm consulting my book. Inside my head there's an old, old book. It's beautiful, really. Gold-edged with big, squiggly letters, and I'm reading it, so be quiet!"

Scat and Feebles looked at one another, puzzled. "I can SEE you guys," Hooblinka said crossly. "Every witch has a book in her head, you ninnies. And I'm searching, I'm searching for.......... I'VE GOT IT!!"

"WHAT?" said both at once. "It's HIS NAME!" crowed Hooblinka. "See, we're stuck with this kid... it's his eye we live in, and we can only get back inside by calling out his name three times."

"Are you serious?" asked Scat. "Do you know how many names these humans have? It's impossible. It will take forever." Feebles began to get very nervous about never seeing his home again, and began to snort and cry a few lilys-of-the-valley-- the flowers that always seemed to show up as the saddest of dragon tears.

Just then a woman's shrill voice cut through their heavy thoughts like an AX. "RUSTY!" it screamed. "YOU'D BETTER BE DOING YOUR HOMEWORK. NO MORE PLAYING WITH THAT TOY OF YOURS! AND WASH YOUR HANDS BEFORE DINNER THIS TIME!"

The three friends looked at one another-- happiness covering them like sunshine. Grinning and holding hands, they all said at once (as loudly as they could, because the humans couldn't hear them anyway)- "RUSTY! RUSTY! RUSTY!" And off they shot.

Up past the plaid shirt, up the freckled cheek, past the nose and right back into the tear duct of the boy's left eye. They were home.

Landing with a happy plop, Feebles started laughing and laughing. Hoobie was still hugging her familiar as madly as she could, even kissing him, but stopped to look at the wildly chuckling dragon. "What?"

"What is it you find so amusing?"

"Hah!" shouted Feebles. "Looks like great-great uncle Theophilus' invention came in p-r-e-t-t-y h-a-n-d-y today. SAVED BY A CHAIR LEG!" he trilled, and he did a little dance.

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