Chapter Thirty-One: Joe vs Johannas

Daniel looked at Tammy. She was out
for blood. It was up to him to make sure she didn't-

“OW, OW, OW, OW!” Daniel limped
away as Sunny lifted her finger to the sky. “THAT WAS NOT LBW!”
“It would have hit the wicket if your
fat knee hadn't been in the way.” Sunny pointed out.
“I think you guys are cheating.”
Sammy pouted.
The game of cricket at the tip had
taken a turn for the nastier. Charlie was certain that bats were
going to start flying shortly.
“What,” Petunia narrowed her eyes.
“Did you just accuse us of?”
“You heard him!” TJ fired.
Tammy shot the filthiest glare she
could at him.
“Guys, let's just take it easy. It's
just a game of cricket.” Charlie tried to calm everyone down.
“If you guys think for a SECOND that
we're going to let you get away with SLANDER, you have another thing
coming.” Sunny and Petunia stood on either side of Tammy.
Everyone jumped a mile. Belle ran
over, waving wildly.
“What did I miss?” She asked
breathlessly as she hugged Sunny, Tammy and Petunia.
“Dodgy umpiring.” Daniel muttered
earning him three dirty looks.
“Hi Belle! Nice of you to drag
yourself away from your studies and grace us with your presence.”
Charlie scowled at her.
“I have to keep my grades up
otherwise I'll get kicked out of my course!” Belle protested.
“Why is it so important that you stay
in that course for? Aren't we your friends?” Petunia asked.
“I'm doing it so that I can start
making changes around here! The Council is so corrupt that any time
the DVM mess up they only get a slap-on-the-wrist sentence and no one
does anything about it!” Belle explained. “There's no point in
us saving everyone if the same threats just keep coming back again
and again!”
“That's what my grand-father said,
and you disagreed with him.” Charlie said coldly.
“No, your grand-father wanted to kill
them outright. That wouldn't have changed anything, because the same
threats still would have kept coming. You saw that Demon came along
when we managed to put Marion and Revolver away for a little while.
The only thing that will fix the crime problem in Pleasantville is
the constant application of tough penalties for those who disobey the
law!” Belle moralised.
“Or you just can't tolerate the fact
that I have a girlfriend now and you're jealous.” Charlie bit.
Belle was furious. On one hand she
couldn't exactly deny the accusation. On the other hand, she HAD
been studying to some effect, having gotten very high marks in all
her courses and almost completely securing her path to the very best
scholarship, thus Charlies words rankled her right to the core.
So she insulted him back.
“If anyone is jealous Begly, it's
YOU. You're jealous that my high intelligence and hard work has
finally paid off and you're going to be left in the dust. The only
reason you've kept up with me all these years is the stupid
Improbability Clause, and even that seems to be failing recently.”
This infuriated Charlie no end. The
Improbability Clause was a sore point with him at the moment, so
naturally he fought back too.
“How's being smart working for you,
all alone and forgotten?” He snapped.
“Forgotten? YOU'RE the forgotten
one, when's the last time Chuckles saved anyone?”
“You think you're SO much better than
me because of that stupid suit?!”
“Plus the fact that I'm smarter than
The Knights of the Last Order slowly
backed away. This was nothing like their little spat over the
cricket. This was a real fight between the two best friends.
“Charlie, maybe we'd better head
off?” Sunny tried to take her boyfriends arm, but he brushed her
off. He was livid.
“I can't believe you. You've
changed.” Charlie said coldly.
“You've changed too.” Belle shot
back icily.
Everyone was thankful when Daniels
phone rang.
“Johannas? Demon's lost control of
him? How?” Daniel spoke to the person on the other end of the
phone. “Right, we'll be there.”
He hung up. “That was my Grandad,
Johannas has gone berserk again. This time he's strapped himself up
with explosives and is threatening to blow up Pleasant Gardens
Shopping Centre.”
“I'll handle this.” Belle rushed
to get changed.
“No, WE will handle this. We're a
team, remember?” Sunny tried to pull her up.
“Let her do what she wants, it's the
only way people will notice her. Especially with her head constantly
in a book.” Charlie snapped. He stormed off angrily
“Charlie no!” Sunny tried to pull
him back. “Sorry guys, I'll have to sit this one out too.”
“No problem.” Daniel sighed,
watching the pair head off.
“Charlie, we really should head back
and help. They're our friends.” Sunny tried to persuade Charlie to
turn around.
“What's the point Sunny, we'll just
be playing second fiddle to Miss Perfect over there.” Charlie
“You're just upset because you've had
a fight, you'll get over it.” Sunny tried. “If she got hurt
because you weren't there you'd never forgive yourself.”
“It'd serve her right.” Charlie
“Charlie, don't be like that! She's
your best friend!” Sunny stood in front of him.
“WAS my best friend. I don't know
her anymore.” Charlie tried to step around her. Sunny grabbed him
around the waist and held him.
“I don't think she's changed at all.
She was always pretty studious even before she started uni.” Sunny
kissed him. “Try to understand where she is right now.”
“I've tried but she's not helping!”
Charlie protested. Sunny sighed.
“You two can be so stubborn.” She
rested her head against Charlies chest.
Charlie looked back towards the
impromptu cricket pitch, where Ruby Giggles had just taken off with
the other Knights of the Last Order in hot pursuit. He scowled and
continue to walk in the opposite direction.
He wasn't going to concern himself with
“Chuckles and Giggles should be here
soon…I hope.” Peter Masters ducked behind a clothes rack with
Lara close beside him.
“This one is your brother-in-law?”
Lara asked quietly as Johannas stalked around angrily, waving a
shorn-off shotgun around.
“Yeah. Bastard killed my sister.”
Peter grimaced. He looked towards another clothes rack and saw his
father and brother looking pretty ticked off.
“What are YOU doing here?!” Peter
mouthed silently.
“Dancing the can-can, what do you
THINK we're doing?!” Bill mouthed back angrily.
“No need to be a smart-arse!”
“No need to be a dumb-arse!”
“Do you guys always argue?” Lara
whispered, looking amused at the silent exchange.
“It's our thing.” Peter shrugged.
TELL ME WHERE JESSIE IS!” Johannas screamed, firing off the
“In the ground where you put her.”
Joe growled under his breath.
“In the ground where YOU put her!”
A loud yell was heard.
“YOU.” Johannas spun around. Ruby
Giggles was floating just above the ground.
Ruby Giggles replied. “And I'm going to stop you.”
can't stop me from finding Jessie.” Johannas grinned his sick grin.
You MURDERED her, remember?” Ruby Giggles groaned, readying a
Ruby Shard in her hand.
Johannas looked
Murdered her. YOU MURDERED HER!” He screamed. He flew at Ruby
Giggles, who threw the Ruby Shard at him. It hit his arm, making him
drop his detonator.
Joe suddenly
bolted out of his hiding place and grabbed the detonator. With his
good hand, Johannas fired off the shotgun wildly, making some of the
innocent shoppers scream.
man…!” Ruby Giggles tried to fly at Johannas, but he fired at
her and she had to dodge. She looked out of one of the windows and
saw Sir Lionheart and Sir Hyper outside.
need to get everyone out of here!” She called to them. “Pa has
the detonator, I don't think Johannas can hurt anyone at the moment!”
Sir Lionheart nodded. Ruby Giggles formed a Ruby Shield and took on
Johannas while the Knights of the Last Order cleared the civilians
A swift kick
from Johannas winded Ruby Giggles, giving him enough time to attack
Joe and try to get the detonator back.
it!” Joe shoved the younger man down easily – although old, Joe
was still large and dangerous.
c'mon, give the detonator to Ruby Giggles and let's get outta here!”
Peter begged.
Joe barked in a dangerous tone. Bill and Peter always obeyed that
tone. Peter grabbed Lara and the three quickly got out of there.
Joe glared at
Johannas. The man who had brutally murdered his only daughter. In a
way, he felt some pity for Johannas. He obviously had mental issues
that had never been tended to. Another blow against the
Pleasantville City Council – there had never been a mental health
facility here. If you wanted a psychologist or psychiatrist (or even
simple counselling) you had to travel south to Brisvegas.
But that would
never make Joe forgive the man for what he had done. He shoved the
younger man away again, allowing Ruby Giggles to grab him.
to quiet you down.” Ruby Giggles formed another Ruby Shard and
prepared to stab Johannas with it. Crazed and furious, Johannas
grabbed her hand and forced it back onto her.
Ruby Giggles
hadn't been expecting that. The Ruby Shard pierced the Ruby Suit,
causing a the Suit to malfunction. Ruby Giggles screamed in pain as
her body was flooded with the Ruby power.
Screamed Joe. Johannas grinned, and was about to fire his shotgun
on the wounded Ruby Giggles when the gun was struck out of his hands!
Joe cried.
Chuckles swung
one of the Arm Scythes at Johannas, who dodged and kicked him in the
shin. While Chuckles was stunned, Johannas turned his attentions
back to Joe.
The two men
began to struggle over the detonator, Joes age finally catching up
with him.
Belle out of here!” Joe roared at Chuckles.
Joe bellowed. Chuckles grabbed the now unconscious Ruby Giggles and
ran out of the building as fast as he could.
Now it was Joe
vs. Johannas. Johannas finally managed to ease the detonator out of
Joes hand. Grinning, he grabbed the older man around the waist.
Screamed Peter in agony. There was a loud explosion inside the
building, and both Peter and Bill knew they'd never see their father
White. Bright
white. Breathlessness.
The end.
Two sets of
footsteps. Coming for him. Coming to get him and take him away.
tried my best. Am I forgiven?”
The two sets of
footsteps came closer.
Joey, you have nothing to be forgiven for. If anything, we should
be begging your forgiveness.”
sorry Joey. For all the rubbish we put you through.”
A smile.
two are idiots.”
Joey, they're all waiting for us.”
let's go!”
And the three
friends were reunited, and everything was okay.

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