MissingArm!AU Chapter 4: I Would Give You Until The Count of Ten, but I Can Only Count To Five
Side note: I’m bad at basic math and it turns out the last chapter was mislabeled for Tumblr. Whoops. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Alright, back with a new chapter. A little later than before, but hey what the heck can you do. Regardless, I think this one is pretty fun. I’ve figured out how to put that banner at the top of things (turns out you hit share on Ao3, who woulda thought) which makes these post look way smoother than before. The song rec this time is A Left Foot Trapped in A Sensual Seduction (which the weebs among us will remember being Alucard’s theme from Hellsing). As always check out @spookylovesboba she’s great, and enjoy the chapter.
Direct Link to chapter 4 on AO3: XXXX
Chapter below the cut
Badgerclops ran through town tired and short of breath, wondering where that feral cat bastard went. Sweetipies turned their heads when they saw Badgerclops him.
“Does Mao Mao have the hose again,” one asked.
“Is Muffin giving out free samples, again,” asked another.
Badgerclops stood on top of a park bench, turning his hand into a megaphone. “Mao Mao,” he called out. “Mao Mao! Mao Mao!”
God, he felt like a green plumber looking for his brother in a haunted mansion. Badgerclops chuckled a bit at his own joke. Maybe he should have said hotel instead of a mansion to make it more current. Badgerclops stopped examining the intricacies of his own comedy when he noticed Pinky waking up to the table with a suspicious jar of mayo in his hands.
“Goss,” Badgerclops said.
“Me or the mayo?”
“Both. Get out of here, Pinky.”
“What are you doin?”
“None of your business.”.
“Are you looking for Mao Mao?”
“Have you seen him?”
Badgerclops shot the jar of mayo with his arm cannon. Seeing Pinky mourn did brighten his day a little. Not enough. He still needed to find Mao Mao.
“Hey! Get off of me!”
The noise snapped Badgerclops out of his thoughts. He panicked. Was it too late? Had Mao Mao already done something he’d regret? Badgerclops hurried in the voice's direction, already making plans for a quick exit. He'd already made their packs. Even a third one for Adorabat in case she was brought along, although he doubted they’d keep her. Maybe they’d ditch her at the castle? Badgerclops slapped his face and shook his head. Now wasn’t the time to be stressing about that. Now was the time to find Mao Mao.
Badgerclops rounded the corner and breathed a sigh of relief. It wasn’t Mao Mao. It was just Rufus getting harassed by some dog. Why was Rufus still here? He should’ve skipped town ages ago.
“Hey!” he called out nearly making Rufus jump out of his own skin.
Rufus pushed the dog away from the bouquet and snacks that the dog was after. “What do you want,” he sneered.
“Okay, one: rude. Two: don’t be so rude to the guy who can throw you in jail, Three: you don’t ask me what I’m doing; I ask you what you’re so what are you doing?”
Rufus pushed Badgerclops' finger away. “I’m visiting my friend that the blasted sheriff put in the hospital!”
Oh right, the raccoon. Kind of cute that he was still waiting for his friend.
Not cute enough to keep Badgerclops from picking the fox up and shaking him like a can of soda.
“I don’t care about your friend! I’m looking for Mao Mao! Have you seen him?”
“Mao Mao? You mean the black cat?”
“The one wearing the red cape?”
“Carrying the golden sword?”
“Yes! Yes! For the love of God, yes! Just tell me where he is!”
“Alas, I haven’t seen him anywhere,” Rufus said with the smarmiest of smiles.
“Okay, you know what,” Badgerclops said, setting the fox back down. "I’m trying to keep someone from being murdered and ya'll are being, like, super ungrateful.”
The dog barked in protest.
“Yeah, that includes you.”
Badgerclops picked the dog up to pet it while he thought. The dog was a milky brown Shiba-Inu. Nothing notable aside from the fact that it had a sword on its back and a necklace. No. It was an amulet around its neck. Badgerclops didn’t pick the dog up just to look at it, he wanted to know who it belonged to. Where in the hell would a sweetipie get a dog and why hadn’t he seen it before? To Badgerclops’ dismay, there wasn’t any address stamped on the collar, but there was a name: Bao Bao .
Badgerclops rubbed his eyes and read the collar again. It still said Bao Bao.
He grabbed Rufus by the collar and used his jacket to wipe at the collar until it shined. Surely enough, it still read Bao Bao.
What? What? This dog was Bao Bao! A dog! A fucking dog! What the shit? Mao Mao described him as an evil barbarian with enough guile to pose as a hero and the psychopathy to abandon a kid whose arm was crushed by a rock! Not a dog! Not a fucking dog!
Badgerclops rubbed his temples, taking deep breaths to calm his racing heart. He should have expected this. He was the most overdramatic motherfucker to ever motherfuck, but damn dude. Whatever he resolved to accept that Mao Mao’s worst enemy was literally an animal. He just needed to kick the dog out of the valley and wait for Mao Mao to calm his tits. No, that wouldn’t do. If no one caught Mao Mao he’d definitely kill someone.
Badgerclops pushed the dog into Rufus’ hands. “Take this dog and get him out of the valley. I don’t care how it gets done. Just do it,” he ordered.
“What? I’m going to visit my friend and besides I don’t have to do anything you say.”
Badgerclops pointed his arm at Rufus, letting it shift into the high powered cannon. “C’mon just take the dog away, you know, before someone gets hurt.”
“Alright just don’t shoot me! I don’t wanna be shot!”
“There we go. Now get out of here before someone -and by someone I mean you- gets messed up.”
Badgerclops watched Rufus turn away to finish his task.
He turned around just in time to see a black blur with a streak of gold.
It was Mao Mao!
Badgerclops swung around brandishing his arm, opening his eye, taking careful aim. The window was more narrow than a pinhole. He watched and waited. He watched Rufus see the sword and scream in terror. He waited for Mao Mao to swing his sword with all his might.
Badgerclops let loose a net. The wound-up ball slowly spread out, snagging Mao Mao out of the air, pinning him against the wall. Badgerclops ignored Mao Mao to put his fingers to Rufus’ neck. The fox's eyes had rolled back, and foam had gathered in the corners of his mouth;The look made Badgerclops’ fur stand on end. He breathed a sigh of relief and wiped the sweat from his brow when he finally felt a pulse. The fox was definitely not fine, but he wouldn't die anytime soon. Although, the scare shaved years off his life.
Once was done with Rufus; he had to deal with Mao Mao.
Mao Mao strained against the net fruitlessly. Bao Bao looked up at his old friend, shivering, ears folded back with tail between its legs. Mao Mao probably couldn’t even hear the dog’s whimpers. He screamed at the top of his lungs. It was had no expletives. It had no threats. It only had a long, grueling explanation of his pain.
Badgerclops reached over, petting Mao Mao behind the ears. “Alright dude, let’s just chill and- “
Mao Mao quickly snapped at Badgerclops’ hand. His teeth clanging against the steel. “C’mon dude, don’t do that. I don’t want to schedule a trip to the dentist.”
He let go of Badgerclops’ hand with a huff, but he still had that dark flame burning in his eyes.
“Badgerclops,” Tanya said, dropping down from the rooftops,” Is everything alright?”
“I’ve got things all tied up,” he said pointing to Mao Mao who didn’t find his joke amusing.
Tanya faced Mao Mao with a sullen look in her eyes. She reached out her paw to wipe a tear from his eye. Mao Mao shook her comfort away with an angry grunt. “Oh, Mittens,” she quietly cried. Tears began to fall down the Tanuki’s face, but Mao Mao didn’t notice or didn’t care.
“You should probably take Bao Bao and go before-”
Badgerclops was interrupted by a screeching roar echoed throughout the kingdom. Badgerclops facepalmed his own stupidity. He was so focused on the Bao Bao part of the message that they completely forgot about the monster. He could see the smoke, hear the screams as it rampaged.
“Tanya." He gave a slight nod of his head," where's Adorabat?"
“I left her at the house.”
Damn the fact that she was a responsible adult. She shouldn’t have to see this, but he did wish she was here. He and Tanya were the only ones who could fight; the dog was a maybe, and Mao Mao was still in the net.
“You think we can take it?”
“I… don’t know. Maybe?”
Fantastic. The moment he thought he had things under control they go right back to shit.
Badgerclops didn’t know how he knew to turn around. It was instinct. He saw the wall behind Mao Mao began to crack and crumble as the monster charged through. The beast was large, green and scaly, like a snake with four legs. It moved like one too. Delicately turning on a dime, clinging to the side of a building while it stared them down.
His small hope that the beast would leave them alone was squashed when the monster saw the amulet around Bao Bao’s neck.
It lunged forward. Mouth open to show a wide maw. In a narrow alley like this, there was nowhere to run. It could probably get them all in one quick gulp. Badgerclops supposed such a terrible end fit such a terrible day.
A naïve thought.
Mao Mao stepped in front of the beast, sword on his back to block the teeth, heels digging into the ground as he forced the charging beast to a slow stop. Tanya, Bao Bao, Badgerclops, and the Mao Mao stopped in sheer confusion and awe. The monster didn’t hesitate. Its tail lashed at Mao Mao from the left, ripping at his skin like a whip. The tail lashed Mao Mao from the right, forcing him to stagger.
The third strike whistled through the air, barely blocked by Mao Mao’s sword. The next lash came with enough force to knock Mao Mao of balance despite blocking it. He parried the next strike, yet it still sent him cartwheeling through the air.
The second his feet touched the ground he was off. A black blur with a streak of gold. The gold cut the tip of the beast tail causing the monster to howl in pain before being silenced with a plunging attack through its skull. Badgerclops hates to admit it, but the bastard cat carried the sheriff's department.
He pulled his sword out of the monster and hopped down off the corpse. He dragged his sword on the ground behind him as he walked forward. His movements were smooth, flowing like a steady stream. Despite wearing an inviting smile, the dark flames in his eyes were raging like a wildfire.
Tanya stepped in front of him before he could get any closer. “Stop. Just… for the love of god stop, and let the dog go.”
“You’re right. I just want to... apologize to Bao Bao. Wish him well,” Mao Mao said with an almost cartoonishly large and toothy smile.
“Do I look some fucking clown to you? I know you’re lying! Just put the sword down and let the dog go.”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about. I just want to say apologize to my childhood friend-”
Tanya interrupted Mao Mao with a strong slap across the face.
When he turned back the smile was gone; the dark flames still burning.
“Move,” he commanded.
“Why do you have to be like this,” she asked, her voice rising in pitch. “Can’t you just let things go? Whatever Bao Bao -this dog- did to you is in the past. It already happened and you can’t change it!”
“I know nothing can change it. I don’t expect it to. I’m not trying to change anything. I’m just trying to do some justice,” he said with a voice as cold as stone, “so, I’ll tell you once again: move.”
Mao Mao didn’t hesitate to push past her, knocking her to the ground while he brought his sword down. Bao Bao quickly hopped out the way. Mao Mao followed the dog close behind, stabbing down over and over again, the calm facade splitting at the seams as his frustration grew.
“I’ll kill you,” he screamed, finally cornering the dog. He raised his sword up as Bao Bao looked up in terror.
Badgerclops grabbed his arm before he could finish. “Calm down! He’s just a dog-”
Mao Mao spun around, dropping the sword, tears welling in his eyes. “That dog ruined my life !”
“He did this! ” He pulled back the cape to reveal the stub of his left arm.
He picked the sword back up, raising it high over his head. “And I’m going to do it to him!”
Tanya was quick.
In a puff of smoke one, Bao Bao turned into thirty. In the second that Mao Mao stopped in confusion, she dashed forward, snatching the real one away before Mao Mao cut the horde into bits.
“Bao Bao,” he screamed,” get back here!”
Badgerclops tackled him to the ground before he could give chase. “Bao Bao! Bao Bao!” he screamed and screamed until his voice went hoarse.
* * *
Mao Mao lay in bed at HQ with his blanket tucked over his head. He felt like shit. Stopping the monster’s charge wore down the flesh on his feet to the bone, despite the monster's teeth stabbed seven holes into his back, one dangerously close to his spine, but the physical pain didn’t matter much. It was his feeling that were tearing him apart. It was one part burning rage; another part nauseating shame.
He heard footsteps approach. It couldn’t have been Adorabat cause she liked to fly (where did she go); they were too heavy to be Tanya’s (not like she wanted to speak to him anyway), so it had to be Badgerclops.
“How ya feeling,” he asked.
Mao Mao let out a small grunt.
“Camille said you should be fine. Just take it easy. Don’t try to jump around or anything.”
He made another small grunt.
“You feeling okay?”
Mao Mao nodded from under the blankets.
“Good to hear. Just get some rest, man.”
“What about Bao Bao,” he grumbled out. His throat was still raw and sore from all the shouting.
“Tanya took him with her.”
Mao Mao let out a shuddering sigh.
“Are you sure you’re feeling okay?”
Mao Mao nodded more forcefully this time.
Badgerclops scooped Mao Mao up into his arms. Cradling the bundle of blankets and clutching him close. “Listen, I know we all have our issues and hangups, and I know this day has been hard for you-”
“You don’t know how hard it's been for me! I hate- hate - that dog. He’s everything wrong with me! I wanna wring his stupid little head from his silly little body!” Mao Mao choked on his words,” I wanna- I wanna…”
Badgerclops pet him behind the ears,” what do you want?”
“...I want to be alone for a bit.”
“How about this,” Badgerclops said,” I can take Adorabat camping for the weekend? We’d be back Sunday. You’d have the house to yourself. How does that sound?”
“Yeah,” Mao Mao slowly nodded,” Yeah, that sounds nice.”
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