Tale Spin Fanfiction: The Organization Phoenix - 5. Chapter Five: Insight into Kit
Disclaimer: I do not own Talespin
Author’s Note: In this chapter, Kit is Molly’s size.
Insight into Kit’s Past
Kit Cloudkicker was six years old and living in an orphanage. He was the smallest among the other kids and the only bear cub in the place. Other than one bear cub, there was a mostly a mixture of lions, monkeys and warthogs in the orphanage along with other species.
These days, the only sort of clothes Kit had to wear was just a plain white T-shirt, just like all the other kids in the orphanage. He had a bed to sleep in, food on the table and clothes on his back, but those were the only things he liked about the orphanage, other than that, Kit hated the place. Too many rules and the adults ordered them around like horses all the time and coming up with so many rules. To a bear cub seeking freedom in the big blue skies and beyond the walls of the orphanage, the adults were just too strict and mean.
Young Kit was sitting outside on a log, examining his only possession, it looks like a metal boomerang that can flip close and open, yes, it was his airfoil and he treasured it, it had a description carved on one corner of it that read: “To: Kit, From: Dad.” He held it to close to his chest; since it was from his Dad, it was like a source of comfort to him. Then suddenly, an older monkey, hanging on a tree above Kit by his tail, snatched the airfoil out his hands.
“Hey! Give it back!” Kit demanded, reaching up for it and started to cry when the monkey held it up higher out of his reach.
“Aw, baby Kit is crying, boo-hoo!” the monkey taunted him, which only made Kit cry harder, wailing with tears flowing out both eyes. It was kids like these that added to Kit’s hatred of the orphanage.
Suddenly, Kit heard a choking sound. Wiping his eyes, he looked up to see that a tiger cub about the age of twelve, holding the monkey by the throat in pure Shere Khan fashion.
“Return it to him…now.” He said in a dangerously soft and calm voice, almost like a purr. The monkey dropped the airfoil at Kit’s feet, who picked it up and hugged it close to his chest. The tiger put his face up close to the monkey’s. “I will not tolerate bullying behaviors, and this kid is miserable enough without extra helpings from you. Do you understand?”
“Y-yes…Chester…I do… Can’t breathe!” the monkey was slowly turning blue when the tiger released him; he fell to the ground, gasping and fluttering.
“Good.” Chester purred. “Don’t ever bother him again, or I will deal with you personally. Remember this, I have marked this kid as a friend of mine; mess with him, then you’ll have me to deal with. Do you understand?”
The monkey kid nodded vigorously.
Chester moved toward Kit and patted him on top of the head. “Are you alright?”
Kit nodded. “Yeah, thank you.”
“Not at all,” Chester said curtly “Do give me a yell when you are oppressed.”
Kit shifted his head in a puzzling way. “What’s ‘oppressed’?”
“It means inflicting stress or trouble on someone.” Chester said patiently. “Like George bullying you and making you cry for example.” he scowled in the monkey’s direction. “And I hate to see little cubs cry, gives me a headache.” he added, massaging his temples.
George, the monkey, gulped and scrambled to his feet, jumped up and hid in his tree.
“Uh, okay, I’ll yell for you when someone is bothering me.” Kit said, still looking confused by some of the words the tiger used. Then he added in a hopeful tone: “Hey, did you really mean that, marking me as your friend?”
Chester considered Kit for a moment, looking him up and down. Kit was a lone kid at six years of age. It was natural to want a friend after all the torment people put him through, first the kids bullied him, and then the people who run the orphanage were being overly strict with him, making up so many rules and he is just a kid, for goodness’s sake!
“Yes,” Chester replied simply.
Kit’s eyes were over bright with tears of joy. “Really?!” he exclaimed happily. “You mean it?”
“But of course. I mean everything I say and I never go back on my words.” Chester replied softy, pressing a hand on Kit’s chest, leaving a black handprint on Kt’s shirt. “I have indeed marked you as my little friend.”
Kit wept loudly, he finally have at least one friend.
Chester placed his hands under the bear cub’s armpits, picked him up and held little Kit in his arms, giving him a comforting embrace. Kit wrapped his arms around Chester’s neck and sobbed into his chest. Chester only held him, patting him soothingly on the back.
“It is alright…” Chester said, now stroking the side of Kit’s head very gently and rubbing his bear ear.
“Thank you…for being my friend.” Kit said, sounding so sleepy, the tiger’s touch was so relaxing that he closed his eyes and fell into a doze.
“You’re welcome.” Chester hissed softy.
He carried Kit back inside and took him to his room instead of Kit’s room.
“I’ll keep him with me, no matter what the ignorant adults say.” Chester vowed with determination as he watched Kit sleep in his arms. He had to admit, the kid was rather cuddly and cute, especially when he is asleep.
He laid Kit on the spare bed of his room and he had kept Kit under his watchful eyes for a few months until…he, Chester was adopted. He had tried to take Kit with him, he even begged his foster parents to adopt Kit too, but they said that one kid was all they could afford.
“Goodbye, Kit…” Chester said with a rare emotional look in his eyes. He picked Kit up one last time and hugged him like hugging a precious little brother. “I won’t forget you and I hope you’ll get out of this place soon.”
“Please…don’t go.” Kit begged his friend, tearing up. He hugged Chester tightly around the neck. “I’ll miss you too much!” he sobbed.
Chester held him for a few moments, not wanting to let go. He has grown attached to Kit in the last few months, Kit gave him a sense of duty, to love and protect Kit as a big brother would do, it felt so natural to him to want to be the one to come to Kit’s rescue every time someone starts to bully him.
A tear dripped down his cheek as he put Kit down.
“I’m sorry, Kit, but I have to go…” He said, losing his Shere Khan-like cool and manner for the moment. He turned and walked away. “Just…be strong….and look after yourself…”
“Chester, please, don’t go!” cried Kit, reaching out a hand for him.
Chester wanted to turned around and comfort Kit again, but he could not, his foster parents were waiting for him. He shred another tear, this seems so cruel to do to Kit, but he had no choice, he kept on walking without looking back at Kit, which made Kit cry louder and harder. He had to ignore Kit’s tears or he would have never been able to make it through the doors. The doors closed behind Chester and a teary Kit stared at the door for several long moments. Chester, his first and only friend has left him.
Kit did not eat that night; he went to bed and cried himself to sleep. He wished Chester were there to console him, but it never happened and the next day, nobody stuck up for Kit when the bullies started picking on him and calling him a baby when he cries.
Now he was back at square one, back to being bullied by the other kids and fussed at by strict adults. He did not think he could stand it without Chester there to defend him and keep the strict adult off him.
Finally, he could not take it anymore, he has been bullied to the point of being physically abused and the kids beat him up everyday, in addition to the on-growing list of rules from the strict adults.
One cold night, he left the orphanage, making a rope from his bedsheets and climbing out through his window. Then he crossed the yard, climbed over the fence and ran down the dark streets. He was going to fend for himself out in the streets, taking with him his only possession: his airfoil.
He wandered aimlessly around the street until he was totally lost and did not have a clue where he was. Well, he never claimed this to be a well-thought out plan, he just wanted to get away from the orphanage.
“What are you doin’ out here so late, kid?” said a roughly gruff voice, a mean-looking thug of a bulldog stepped out of the darkness and approach the frightened bear cub. “Maybe you didn’t know it, but there’s a toll for passing through my alleyway.
“P-p-please, s-s-sir, I’m l-l-lost and hungry. And I don’t h-h-have any m-m-money.” Kit stuttered as a reaction to the cold weather and fear. It was a cold night and he was only wearing a white T-shirt.
“Not my problem, kid,” the thug said gruffly, he grasped Kit by the front of his shirt and lifted him up off his feet. Drawing back a fist, he aimed to punch Kit in the face.
A rolling pin came out of nowhere behind the thug, whacking him on the head. Birds flew around his hand as he released Kit and fell facedown on the ground.
“That is no way to treat a child!” an elderly lady’s voice spoke, sounding furious.
Wham! The lady struck the unconscious thug again.
“You—ought—to be—ashamed—of—yourself!” she yelled, whacking the bulldog with her rolling pin with every word she spoke, raising it and bringing it down like a baseball bat.
Satisfied with her own work, she sidestepped around the thug and moved to console the unfortunate child.
Kit lay curled in a ball on one side on the pavement, whimpering and hugging himself for warmth.
The old little bear-lady’s heart went out to Kit, she got down on her knees and placed a hand on the child’s shoulder. At once, Kit’s body tensed up at her touch, the old lady knew that this kid didn’t trust anybody and for good reasons. However, she kept a gentle hand on Kit’s shoulder; giving it a rub
“It’s alright, I’m not going to hurt you, dear,” she said and then she hummed a soothing tune to him until his body relaxed under her touch.
Feeling that she had gained enough trust from the boy, she gathered Kit’s curled-up form in her arms and hugged him to give him comfort and warmth, still humming a soothing tune. She also rubbed the back of Kit’s head.
“Are you alright, dear?” she asked in a kind, motherly voice
Sniffing, Kit replied: “N-n-no, I’m h-h-hungry, and c-c-cold…” He pressed his body against hers for more warmth. “And I’m s-s-scared!”
“Oh, you poor dear,” the old lady said with sympathy. “Why don’t you come with me to my house and I’ll fix you something to eat.”
“O-okay,” Kit agreed with a sniff, desperate for food and warmth.
The old lady stood up with Kit in her arms and walked out of the alleyway and down the street toward an old house at the far end of the street.
“Here we are, dear.” She stopped at the gateway of her house. Kit looked up at it. It was a nice two-story house. Suddenly, Kit sneezed, startling the old lady slightly. She examined his face; it was pale and had a tired look to it and some of the color had drained from it. Kit shivered and sneezed again. “Bless you. Oh, dear, you’re catching a cold.” She placed a hand on Kit’s forehead, it felt hot. “And you’re running a high fever.”
She stepped inside of her house, took Kit to the sitting room and placed him in front of the fireplace. Kit held his little cold hands up to the fire, feeling the warmth he had desperately wanted.
“Now, sit right here, dear. I have something for you.” The old lady said as she left the room.
Kit looked around as he stood up in the front of fire with his back to it, warming his furry behind. It was a handsome sitting room with matching armchairs and a sofa. The pictures on the walls shows the younger version of the old lady arm-in-arm with a handsome looking purple bear who looks like a pilot, other pictures show her kids that were probably already grown up. Moreover, a few pictures showed a golden retriever dog that she had for a pet.
Kit turned around to face the fireplace, there on top of the mantelpiece were models of very old airplanes, some of the first ever built. Those planes fascinated him, he could not explain it but the sight of airplanes—whether real or a model—thrills the young bear cub to his soul.
“Here you are, dear,” the old lady has returned, holding a green sweater with a yellow patch on the left sleeve. She walked over to Kit and slipped the sweater over his head. It was a little too big for him, the bottom of it fell down to his knees and the sleeves were so long that his little arms did not reach the end of the sleeves. “It’s a little big on you, but it’ll keep you warm, and you’ll grow into it,” she assures him, smiling warmly at him.
Taking one of his little arms, she rolled back his sleeves so he can use his hands.
Kit looked at her directly in the eyes, smiling as he took in her appearance. She was an orange bear with a red mane of hair, giving her the look of a lion. She wore a blue dress with a matching hat and a white apron.
“Thank you,” Kit muttered politely, before wrapping his arms around the old lady’s neck.
“Oh, you’re welcome, sweetheart,” she said, returning the embrace and patting him on the back.
Finally, Kit pulled away from her and asked: “What’s your name?”
“Oh, how very rude of me, here I am, just saved you and haven’t introduced myself.” She scowled at herself. “My name is June Gummi, but everyone calls me Grammi Gummi.”
Kit stared at her, thinking that ‘Grammi Gummi’ suited her better.
“Can I call you Grammi?” he asked her.
Grammi chuckled before replying: “Why, yes, you may.” She leaned down and kissed Kit on the forehead. Kit seems to like that, his smile confirms it. Grammi picked Kit up in her arms and carried the bear cub to the kitchen, where she had a plate already fixed for him. She set him down in a chair in front of his plate
“So, do you have a name, dear?” she asked Kit, sitting down opposite him.
“Yeah, I’m Kit, Kit Cloudkicker,” he said politely.
After Kit had eaten as much as he wanted, Grammi led him through the house, holding his hand as she guided him to a bedroom upstairs, in which she was letting Kit sleep.
She opened a bedroom door in the upstairs’ hallway, turned on a light and guided Kit inside.
“This will be your room,” she said kindly.
Kit look all around the room with a big smile spreading on his face. The room had shelves with model airplanes, few of which hung on the ceiling and he loves airplanes!
“I love it, thank you!” he cried out with joy, hugging Grammi around the waist.
Patting Kit’s head, she replied: “You’re welcome, Kit.” Picking Kit up, she carried him over to the bed, placed him gently on the bed, and tucked him in. Then she placed a palm on Kit’s forehead, it still felt warm but not hot like it was a while ago.
“At least your fever went down, honey,” she said with a warm smile.
“That’s good.” Kit yawned.
Stroking his head gently, Grammi hummed a soothing tune to him, and this time, Kit could make out the words in her hums.
Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me…! I once was lost, but now I’m found. Was blind but now I see.
Smiling, Kit fell asleep with a peaceful expression.
The next day, Kit got up out of bed and made his way to the kitchen. He was about to push open the door when he heard two people talking, he stopped in his tracks and listened.
“Zummi, I couldn’t just leave him there, he was cold, hungry, scared and alone. And he’s just a little boy, he could’ve died!” Grammi was saying.
“But you c-could’ve gotten hurt,” another voice said, it did not sound angry, it just sounded concerned. “I-I’m glad you saved the boy, b-but you shouldn’t be fighting gangsters like that!”
“I’ve handled worse guys than that rookie in my days.” Grammi said with a faint smile. “Besides, he was going to hurt Kit or worse…I just couldn’t sit around and do nothing.”
Zummi Gummi sighed. “You’re ri-right, as usual. Is-is he still around?”
Smiling, Grammi replied: “Yes, he is here, just outside the kitchen door, as a matter of fact.”
The two bears heard a gasp from outside the kitchen door.
“Kit, sweetie, it’s okay, come on in, don’t be shy.” Grammi called to him through the door.
Kit pushed the door open and walked into the kitchen.
Zummi Gummi was a purple bear with gray eyebrows, he was about the same height as his wife, at about five feet tall.
Zummi approached the young bear cub and bent down to face him.
“Hello, Pit—t-that is your name, right?” he asked with a confused look on his face.
“Zummi has a memory problem, dear. He forgets things.” Grammi explained, for Kit has cast her a questioning look. “No, Zummi dear, but you were close. Go on, sweetie, tell him your name.” she addressed the last line to Kit.
Kit stood up straight and held out a hand to Zummi to shake. “I’m Kit,” he said plainly and clearly. “Kit Cloudkicker, nice to meet you, Mister Zummi.”
“Nice to meet you too…Kit.” Zummi said, hoping he got the name correctly this time. When Kit smiled, Zummi smiled and continued: “Grammi tells me that you like aero-er-airplanes.”
At the mention of ‘airplanes,’ Kit’s face lit up, his smile broadened, and the Gummis could sense the aura of excitement around the young boy.
“That makes two of us,” Zummi chuckled. “I have a plane, and maybe if you’re good, I’ll take you for a ride.”
Kit’s eyes widened and he practically bounced on his toes!
“REALLY?! You mean it?!” asked Kit excitedly.
Zummi scooped Kit up in his arms. “Oh my! Has Grammi been giving you Gummiberry juice?”
“No, of course not, Zummi.” Grammi said with a smile.
“Do you promise to take me flying?” Kit asked Zummi, as though it was not official until he promised.
Zummi chuckles at the boy’s enthusiasm toward flying and planes
“Yes, I promise.”
“Hey Kit, there’s something we been needing to ask you.” Grammi said.
“There is?” asked Zummi with a confused look on his face, there was a pause while he searches his thoughts. “Oh my, yes, t-there is.”
“I’ll ask him, Zummi dear,” she said, taking Kit out of his arms and holding him herself. “Kit darling, when I found you, you were all alone, if you don’t count that creep who almost hurt you. Well, our question is this: Where are your folks?”
“My folks?” said Kit, scratching his head in a puzzling way.
“Your parents, dear.” Grammi said.
“Y-you know, your Mom and D-Dad.” Zummi added.
“Oh…” Kit bowed his head sadly, the happy and excited aura the Gummies has been enjoying vanished on the spot! “I don’t have a Mommy or a Daddy.”
“Oh…” Grammi gasped, covering her mouth, and then she looked sadly at Zummi. “He’s an orphan, Zummi.”
Zummi’s eyes were downcast, he looks very sad, he was sad for Kit. Poor kid.
“Is an orphan a bad thing?” asked Kit, who was getting the wrong idea from this miserable aura that now filled the kitchen.
“N-no!” Zummi half-shouted, he hugged Kit in a fatherly way. “No, it’s not a bad thing; it just means that you don’t have parents to take care of you, n-not that that’s a good thing….”
“Oh…” Kit stared down at the floor for a moment before looking back up at them. “Would you take care of me?”
“Of course we will, darling!” Grammi exclaimed before Zummi could reply.
“B-b-but, G-Grammi dear.” Zummi protested.
“Zummi, he obviously ran away from the orphanage where he came from, if we take him back there, he’ll just run away again and who knows what kind of danger he’ll face next. I will not let that happen! HE’S STAYING WITH US AND THAT’S FIANL!”
Zummi stuttered and cowered under his wife’s outburst, holding up his hands in surrender.
—ONE YEAR LATER—
Life with Grammi and Zummi has been the happiest time in Kit Cloudkicker’s life. He stayed with them and Grammi taught him to read and write and other educational stuff like spelling and math. She also taught him how to read maps and compasses.
One day, Zummi decided to take Kit for a ride in his plane. It was one of the first cargo planes; it was a navy-blue plane, similar to Shere Khan’s planes but smaller. Kit was so happy to ride in the plane, as he had done many times in the past year..
Grammi stood behind Kit, who was sitting in the navigator’s seat of the cockpit so Kit could practice his navigational skills, which he had learned from Grammi. More than once during the trip, she had to correct a mistake he made in his directions. Grammi knew that Kit was special since she has rescued him; he was very intelligent for his age, he just had trouble with confident and self-esteem. He had to be intelligent to have been able to learn the map and compass this quickly; however, there was still room for improvement.
Kit bowed his head, looking put out. “Why don’t you do this, you’re so much better than me.” he made to get up but Grammi grasped his shoulder and sat him back down.
“Don’t worry about it, sweetie, you’re doing fine.” Grammi said, trying to build Kit’s confident
“But I made a mistake.” Kit argued, sounding a little pessimistic.
“And from mistakes, you learn,” Grammi said, with a gentle and consoling hand on Kit’s shoulder. “This is just a learning experience for you. Don’t be so hard on yourself, Kit, we all make mistakes, but the important thing is that we learn from them so we don’t make that mistake again, and if you do make the mistake twice, oh well, learn it again.”
“Okay.” Kit sighed and continues reading the map. Duckburg was five miles west of their location. But which way was west?
Grammi read the map over Kit’s shoulder; she was trying to teach him how to tell the directions without a compass.
“Kit, I’ll give you a hint. The sun rises in the east and sets in the west. Find the sun and try to see what direction it is sitting.”
Kit looked in the direction of the sun, not looking at it directly. It was still morning, so the sun must still be sitting in the east, to go west, they would have to go in the opposite direction of the sun.
“Navigator to pilot,” Kit said, Zummi nodded in acknowledgement.
“Duckburg is that way,” he said, pointing his whole arm at the window of his door.
“R-Roger that,” Zummi said with a smile.
“Good job, Kit!” Grammi praised him
Kit smiled modestly. “You helped,” he muttered.
“Yeah, but you learned!” Grammi said, still smiling
“Yeah, and that’s a big achievement in my book.” Zummi said, shifting the plane into the direction Kit had indicated. “One thing about life is that you never ever stop learning. Why, you learn something everyday, and sometimes you relearn things.”
Kit smiled, he loved these two, they were funny and caring and they take time to educate Kit the best they could.
An unnatural purple cloud suddenly formed around them and lightning struck the tail section of the plane! And Zummi suddenly lost control of the plane as it started to go down
“Monday—er—mayday! Mayday!” Zummi cried into the radio. But he couldn’t complete the distress call, a lightning bolt shot through the window and struck old Zummi and Zummi fell forward against the yoke and the plane shot down and spun repeatedly in the air.
“Zummi!” cried Grammi.
Then Kit was thrown against his door, which sprung open and he fell out of the plane and fell out of the sky!
“KIT! NOOO!” Grammi yelled, reaching out for Kit, but she was too late, Kit was beyond her reach and falling out of the sky.
The plane flew to the ground and crashed, and Zummi and Grammi were no where to be seen.
Kit was still falling out of the sky when he pulled out his airfoil from beneath his sweater, flipped it open and set it underneath him—not standing on it but sitting on his hands and knees on top of it. Kit was amazed, not only did his airfoil slow his fall, but he was also gliding through the air! It was then that he knew what the airfoil was for!
He looked below himself and saw a city underneath him. He pulled out a little bottle of Gummiberry Juice and drank it down in one gulp. Suddenly his body felt springy and oddly light. Tucking his airfoil under his arm, he fell ten feet to the ground, and his feet bounced off the pavement on landing!
“Whoa!” Kit cried as he bounced off of the pavement and then bounced off a tree, the dumpsters, a car and once, he bounced off the diving board of a pool area, which made him bounce higher and further. “How do you stop this thing?!”
For a full minute, he bounced up and down the street until he landed in the bushes, the moment he landed in the bushes, he felt the effects of the Gummiberry Juice wore off and he climbed out of the bushes and looked up to see the smoke rising from a crashed plane in the distance.
“No…” he murmured. “NO! Zummi, Grammi!” he fell down to the ground and wept. “Why…? Why did they have to die?”
Now Kit was once again homeless and alone in the dark and scary world. But if Kit had been paying attention, he would have noticed that the unnatural storm that came up so suddenly had vanished with Zummi and Grammi.
—THREE YEARS AND SIX MONTHS LATER—
Over three years later found ten-year-old Kit wandering around the street, he had grown into his once-too-big sweater, it fits him perfectly now. He was trying to find a job, refusing to steal food, as he wanted to pay for it but as always, he was broke.
“P-please sir, there must be something I can do.” Kit pleaded with a shopkeeper.
“NO! Now get out!” he yelled, whacking Kit on his furry behind with a broom.
“OW! Okay, okay, I’m going!” Kit said as he dashed out of the small shop. He sat down on the pavement. He felt like crying but he did not, crying get you nowhere; a harsh lesson he had to learn while surviving three years out on the streets. “Looks like I’ll be eating out of the dumpsters tonight…yuck! I wish I could get some decent food.”
After his dinner, which was a moldy hamburger from the garbage, he went out to sneak into an airfield where pilots put their planes in a building for the night. He would climb on top of one of the wings and slept there.
During the night, a hole was being made in the ceiling above the plane on which Kit was sleeping on. When it was done, ropes with hooks wrapped themselves around the plane, pull it up through the ceiling, and was drawn into the belly the Iron Vulture, once inside, pirates started running around the plane, taking it apart and adding the parts and pieces to their own warplanes.
A scrawny canine with a Fu Manchu-style mustache, Mad Dog spotted the bear cub, he wasn’t so little anymore but he was still smaller than the average ten-year-old. He picked the sleeping kid up by the collar of his green sweater.
“Hey, Captain! Look, we got a double prize, can I keep him?” he asked, he has a nasal, whiny voice.
The Captain, an orange wolf in a blue pirate uniform looked up at what Mad Dog was holding.
“No, you cannot keep him, you idiot!” the Captain yelled, going up to Mad Dog and smacking him in the face with a strong hand. Then he snatched the boy out of Mad Dog’s grip and holding him by the collar like Mad Dog was doing. “This is a child, yes-no? You cannot make pets out of children! Although…” He held the sleeping kid up to eye level. “A heavy sleeper, this one. Hold up by the collar and he doesn’t wake up! We could hold him for ransom… Ooh, I hope he has such rich, richy parents.” But after examining the kid and seeing the old sweater he was wearing, he could tell that this kid was definitely not from a wealthy family. “Ugh! Never mind, he is worthless!” He said, tossing Kit aside.
Kit jerked awake on contact with the floor. “OW! Hey, watch it!” he snarled, scowling up at the wolf who has purposely dropped him.
A big muscular dog in pirate clothing and a black top hat, snatched Kit up by the collar. Kit was really getting tired of people picking him up in this fashion.
“Hey, put me down!” He kicked out a leg, and then swung a fist, which caused him to spin around on his collar in midair.
“Ye vill show the Cap’n respect or I’ll blow yer head off,” the big dog said, shoving the barrel of his gun threateningly to Kit’s nose. “Now say you’re sorry!”
Kit chuckled nervously and pushed the gun away from his face with a finger. “Sorry?”
“Now, dat’s more like it!” the big dog purposely dropped Kit to the floor.
“Oof!” Kit landed flat on his belly with his chin on the floor, only to be snatchedd up by the collar once again. This time he did not struggle and was staring into the eyes of the Captain.
“Thank you, Dumptruck, he did hurt my wonderful feelings, but it’s all better now.” The Captain then turned his attention to Kit, who gulped under his gaze. “So, my boy, tell us, what is your name?”
“K-Kit Cloudkicker…s-s-sir.” He stuttered with fear.
“Well, Kit Clownkicker, I will give you three choices: One, become my personal cabin boy. Two: be shooted out of the sky or three: …uh, what should the third choice be?
“Letting me go free?” Kit put in hopefully.
“I am a pirate! I never let anybody go free!” the Captain shouted at him.
Kit hung his head in defeat.
Another pirate, a short plump dog lean in and whispered something in the Captain’s ear.
“Ah, yes, yes! Thank you, Gibber.” The Captain said, and Gibber grinned with pride. Turning his attention back on Kit again, he continued: “Or three, join us and become a pirate.”
Kit was silence for a moment, thinking his options over. He didn’t really have anywhere else to go and these guys have planes and maybe they will teach him to fly and get him a plane. Joining the Air Pirates sounds a lot better than being shot and dropped out of the sky or being a personal cabin boy to this crazy Captain!
“I chose three…” he said.
The Air Pirates roared with cheers and applause, firing their guns off. The Captain smiled.
“Well then, I, Don Karnage, hereby dub you, Kit Clownkicker—”
“It’s Cloudkicker, sir.”
Don Karnage raised a hand as though to smack Kit, but he grasped it with his other hand and force it down. Some of his more-powerfully built crew members hated child abuse, and they might turn on him for hitting Kit.
“Do not interrupt me.” Don Karnage hissed through gritted teeth, his face twisting in anger.
“Sorry.” Kit said quickly.
“I, Don Karnage, hereby dub you, Kit Cloudkicker as a member of the Air Pirates!”
—Back to the Present—
“…and I stayed with them for a year until they were no better than the orphanage,” Kit said, who was sitting on Mathew’s lap as he told his life’s story. “Well they had no rules, but a few of them made fun of my size and they’d hit me if I refuse to give them my plate of food. That’s partly why I got sick of them and ran away.”
“Partly? What are the other reasons you ran away from them?” asked Mathew, who has just endured over an hour listening to the hard and harsh life his son had been through. It was no wonder he did not tell Baloo everything about his past.
Kit sniffed and a tear slid down his cheek. “Because—because, one for them told me that they had killed before, I…. I knew they were mean, and that they were robbers, but I never thought they’d be murderers too. I was sick of their treatment of me and was scared that they might have me to kill someone too, so I made the choice to leave.”
Mathew just sat there in shock, absentmindedly rubbing the back of Kit’s head consolingly
“Oh…” he said numbly.
Kit continued to cry in his Dad’s chest. Mathew looked over at Baloo for help.
“It’s okay, Lil Britches,” Baloo said quietly, coming up to Kit and patted him gently on the back. “At least now we know your story, we won’t ask ya ta tell it again, it’s bad enough for ya ta tell it once. From now on, you’re with us, we’re buddies, pals, a team; we’re not going to ever leave you.”
Kit pulled away from his Dad and hugged Baloo around the neck.
“Thanks, Papa Bear.”