Stories For Thing

Billy the Meaniebutt Shark gets a surprise

    meaniebutt

This is the third and final part of the story about the Little Princess vs. Billy the Meaniebutt Shark. Now then, how much of parts 1 and 2 do you remember? To be honest, Frisbee the cat had to remind me of everything that happened before because I didn’t pay proper attention.

If you remember, Lola the Bulldog told Frisbee a story about a little girl who liked to hunt sharks. One day, the little princess heard about a really mean and nasty shark named Billy, and so she set out on the high seas with her loyal crew of Jolly Pirates to find him.

Billy lived in a house inside of a volcano, which sat in the center of a scary, dangerous place called Shark Island. Lucky for Billy, the house was lava-proof, just in case the volcano ever got sick and threw up.

Billy loved the water, but because he was hired to keep Shark Island clean, he had to spend most of his time on land. Some sharks agreed that this was what probably made Billy extra especially grumpy.

One day, Billy was at home watching television and eating a human and cheese sandwich. “Nom Nom Nom,” he said. Humans with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, mayo and mustard, on whole wheat bread, was his favorite.

“So what if I’m getting a pot belly,” he grumbled, thinking about some of the jokes other sharks had made about him when they thought he couldn’t hear them. “Some things just taste better than skinny feels.”

He burped. It was a very loud burp.

Billy was watching a musical. People were dancing and singing, and he liked to think about which of them he would put into his favorite sandwich first.

Suddenly, the security alarm went off. There was an intruder on Shark Island! Billy checked the security camera and saw a little girl with long dark hair and a pretty blue dress crying and stumbling along. She looked lost.

“Well, well,” Billy said. “Looks like I’ll be having an after dinner mint.”

Eagerly, Billy rushed out to meet the snack sized human, giggling to himself because he had decided to play a little game.

The little girl walked through the jungle of Shark Island, sobbing. “Oh woe is me!” she cried. “Mama was so right about me! I am my own kryptonite!” And if you listened closely, you would have heard her add, just under her breath: “I can’t believe I just said Mum was right! I’d better get an award for this performance.”

The little girl tripped over nothing in particular, collapsed into her arms, and shuddered with sobs.

By the time Billy the Shark arrived, he was almost starting to feel sorry for the poor lost girl. Almost.

“There there, little lady, why are you crying so?” he turned on his most concerned uncle voice.

The little girl looked up at him. Her eyes got big and round like saucers. Billy took this to mean that the girl was quite frightened indeed.

“Don’t be afraid. I won’t eat you,” he grinned. All of his teeth were showing, which wasn’t very reassuring.

Nevertheless, the little girl said: “Oh Mr. Shark, Mr. Shark! I’m lost and hungry and sad! Can you help me, please?”

“By all means,” Billy agreed. “I’ll take you to get something nice to eat, ok?”

“Ok,” said the little girl. Um, but I can’t eat food and swim underwater at the same time.”

Actually, a little mermaid had taught the little girl how, but the shark didn’t need to know about that.

“I have a house here on the island, inside of a volcano. Don’t worry, it’s lava-proof.”

So, Billy lead the girl back to his volcano home, asking her all sorts of questions about her parents, where she had come from, and how she had gotten lost.

“My parents and I were on vacation,” the girl lamented. “We were so happy, until the storm came and smashed up our boat.”

“Terrible,” Billy said.

“My dad was only 37—it’s such a shame. At least my mum was 89, and lived a full life, you know?”

“Wow. 37 and 89,” Billy remarked. “That’s not just May-December, that’s Mayan Calender-December.”

“And yet somehow they made it work,” the little girl nodded.

“And what is your name little girl?”

“Um…I have amnesia.” The little girl said.

“Pretty name,” Billy remarked.

Soon, back at Billy’s house, the little lost girl seemed much less worried about her plight. In fact, she walked around the shark’s place with intense curiosity.

“Now, let’s find you something to eat!” Billy said, almost licking his chomps. “Fatten you up a bit,” he muttered. He went to his refrigerator and looked in. “Tell me little girl, what would you like to eat, hm?”

“Can I have a shark burger, please?” the little dark haired girl asked sweetly.

Billy the Meaniebutt Shark turned to her. “That’s not funny, little girl,” he said, narrowing his eyes.

“I wasn’t making a funny,” the little girl assured him, still smiling.

“Who are you?” Billy the Shark asked. There was something odd about this little lost girl, and he was suddenly getting a very bad feeling about all of this.

“Well, it’s not amnesia,” said the little girl. “Not even close. It doesn’t even rhyme with amnesia. Do you want to know what it rhymes with? I’ll tell you: it rhymes with sting. Not sting like a bee sting. Sting like: surprise! It’s a trap!”

Billy finally realized who this strange little girl was who had suddenly turned up frightened and alone on Shark Island, of all islands. He’d never seen her before, but he’d definitely heard of her.

The little girl whose name rhymed with shark hunting.

The little princess named Thing.

“No!” Billy the Meaniebutt Shark screamed. “Somebody! Haalp!”

“Say hello to my Big Bad Mum!” the little princess shouted.

“Oh no!” Billy cried. “Your mom’s here too! That’s not fair! How bad is she?”

“She’s awful!” the little princess admitted, “but I’m talking about my magical sword, see?”

She held it out for him to see. It was bright and shiny, and it looked very sharp.

Billy shuddered. “Please don’t turn me into Meanibutt shark cutlets!”

“Quiet down!” the little princess commanded. “If you surrender peacefully, I won’t have to.”

Billy stifled his sobs and tried to look as helpless and pathetic as possible.

“You should be ashamed of yourself, stinky shark!” the little princess said. “You’re such a bully, and just like all bullies, you’re really just a big ole coward at heart.”

“I’m sorry!” Billy whimpered. “What do you want me to do to make up for all of my bad ways? I’ll do anything.”

“Billy, Billy, Billy! You’ve been a bad boy! I’m going to take you to Shark Zoo.”

“Not Shark Zoo!” Shark Zoo was famous for being a place where sharks had to go in order to learn how to behave, and even do school work.

If they learned good manners, and promised to be good every day, the sharks would finally be set free again. Billy had met a few sharks who had graduated from Shark Zoo, and they were so boring.

“It’s not a zoo!” Billy complained. “It’s a prison! You turn perfectly natural sharks into wimpy little guppies. I betchu if I was a dolphin, you wouldn’t send me to such a nasty place–and dolphins are much worse than sharks!”

“What are you, an activist?” the little princess snapped. “Don’t talk to me about dolphins! I’m a shark hunter, okay? Now, hold still while I tie you up!”

And so, the little princess and her Jolly Pirates took Billy the Meaniebutt Shark to Shark Zoo. At first, Billy was very sad and bored there, but the little princess wrote him letters—and even sent some tasty snacks (not humans)—which brightened Billy’s spirits immensely. Before long, Billy was the best behaved, most studios shark in all of Shark Zoo; even standing up to bullies who liked to cause trouble there.

Billy had become so good and nice that by the time he we was free to live in regular waters again, he had gotten a new nickname: Billy the Goody-Goody Shark Who Always Likes to Brag That He’s Princess Thing’s Pal.

By Saladinho

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The little princess whose name rhymes with something

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A dog told this story to a cat.

Once there was a little princess in India who braved a terrible storm to hunt a particularly nasty shark named Billy. Billy the Meaniebutt Shark was his full name, and he certainly deserved it.

Billy rhymes with bully, and that’s what Billy was. He was so bad that he even bullied other sharks. Even whales. I’m talking about the really big kind, too.

For the most part, whales are very nice and friendly, even though some of them are bigger than dinosaurs ever were. Billy took advantage of their gentle nature, and often took the lunches their mums and dads packed for them to take to school.

If a whale ever complained about it, Billy the Shark would pull a dirty trick. “Oh, you want to fight about it, huh,” he’d sneer. “What would your mom think, ha? She’d be so ashamed of her feisty kid fighting sharks. Whales are supposed to be so peaceful.”

“No, Billy,” the whale would say. “I don’t want to disappoint my mum.”

“Good whale,” Billy would chuckle. “Tell your mom you’d like a human and jelly sandwich next time. Gee willickers!”

Well, news of Billy the Meaniebutt Shark’s awfulness spread throughout the land and the sea; and finally word got back to a certain little princess, who had always been keeping an eye out for nasty sharks.

It was a little bird that told her. She flew into the little princess’ palace one morning, while the little princess was having a bath. The bird was very excited. “Holy earthworms! Your Highness! Wait until I tell you about this hideous shark!”

“Fetch me my Big Bad Mum!” The little princess shouted, splashing her fists into her bubble bath. Some of it got into her eyes, and stung like freshly sliced onions. “AAAAH!! I CAN’T SEE!”

So, rather than fetching Her Highness’ magical sword Big Bad Mum, the little birdy had to go and fetch the princess’ real mum instead.

“What’s this then,” Mum asked, when she arrived.

“Mahm! I’m blind!”

“Chill out, yo,” Mum sighed. “Hold still and I’ll rinse your eyes…and to think your dad and I let you run off to fight sharks. If they only knew that your personal kryptonite was you yourself.”

“I thought you were my personal kryptonite,” the little princess retorted.

“And don’t you forget it.”

Mum rinsed the princess’ eyes out, packed a few lunches, tried to do something with the girl’s hair – gave up – gave her a big hi-five, and waved goodbye as the good ship H.M.S. Bookshelf sailed away for adventure.

“I’ll be back in two flaps of a dragon’s wings, Mahm!!” The little princess called.

“Don’t hurry ba- I mean – take your time and be sure to check everywhere in the world that mean ole shark could be hiding!” Mum said.

The little princess frowned suspiciously. Mum smiled innocently.

Now then, next was the terrible storm that Lola told Frisbee about in Part One. After that, it didn’t take the little princess and her Jolly Pirates long to arrive at Shark Island.

Shark Island was ginormous. Some said it was the worst, most dangerous place on Earth. Even though sharks lived in the ocean, they liked to vacation on Shark Island.

They had all sorts of games and fun activities for sharks on Shark Island. Like “Chase Humans On Land”, “Release Captured Humans From Their Cages And Let Them Run Into The Sea So We Can Eat Them In Water”, and volleyball.

Volleyball was especially popular.

When the little princess and her band of Jolly Pirates approached Shark Island, the place was as quiet as a ghost town. This time of year, Shark Island was closed to tourists.

“According to this map the little birdy gave me, Billy’s house is right in the center of the island.”

“Do you think Billy is still here, your Captain Princessness?” a Jolly Pirate asked nervously.

“Oh, he’s here alright,” the princess said. “Billy’s the manager of Shark Island.”

The princess and a few of her Jolly Pirates rowed ashore the infamous island on a small boat.

“You lads wait here,” said the princess. She took a bag she was carrying over to one of the little beach huts sharks use to change into their bathing suits, and went inside. When she came back out a few minutes later, she was wearing the pretty blue dress she’d bought off of that sea dragon from Part One.

The Jolly Pirates were shocked.

“Your Highness!” one of them cried, “Why are you wearing that flimsy little fancy dress! You can’t fight sharks in that thing. Especially not mean ole Billy!”

“Chill out, yo.” The little princess had a sneaky smile. It was all part of the plan, you see.

But that’s a story for Part Three.

Try to behave until then, ok?

By Saladinho

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Lola tells Frisbee a story

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Now then, sit up and pay attention. Or, I don’t know, lie back and relax. Whatever works? You remember me, don’t you? It’s Frisbee the cat. I thought I’d tell you a story about a story. It’s called being postmodern. Postmodern is when a storyteller winks at the reader (or the listener), and the reader (or the listener) winks back.

It’s all very intellectual.

Let’s see, it was a Saturday morning I think. My human was wearing her pajamas and eating cereal, and watching TV, and talking on her cell phone. I was trying to take a nap, but my human was being too noisy.

“Meoowshut up!!” I said.

“What you want baby, what you want sugar, huh huh?” My human said, cooing at me like a dove. She could be really annoying sometimes, you know.

“Meoowwould you stop talking like that please! I’m not in the mood. Keep it down. I’m having my third nap of the morning, okay!”

“Ooh! Come here and let me eat you up you cutie little thing! Come here snuggums!” sang my human, between mouthfuls of cereal.

“Ugh! That’s it, I’m going to Lola’s,” I said. You remember Lola, right? That’s right: my friend the Bulldog.

My human opened the door for me, and I left my apartment and walked over to Lola’s house. It was quiet this morning. The birds were tweeting in the trees and on the power lines, insects hummed in the bushes, and traffic whizzed along on the large road nearby.

Okay, so I guess it wasn’t really that quiet.

Lola’s house is large and cozy, but my favorite part is how I can simply walk in by going through the pet door. No having to wait for humans to get off their lazy bums.

“Oh hi Frisbee!” Lola said as I came in. Lola was with her younger humans. For some reason, Lola called her humans Mama and Papa, and Brother and Sister. Weird.

“Wanna play Storytime?” Lola asked.

“Uh, how do you play Storytime?” I asked.

“I tell a story and you get to listen.” Lola said.

I thought about it. This didn’t sound like there would be a lot of fun running around and jumping involved. “Uh, sure I guess.” I decided.

“Great! I’ve got a good one! Let’s go outside.”

I followed Lola into her backyard, where she began to tell me a story about a little Indian princess who took her best men out on a dangerous shark hunting expedition.

“Everything had started off fine,” Lola said. “The little princess took her best ship, the H.M.S. Bookshelf; and her best men, the Jolly Pirates; and her finest sword, the magical Big Bad Mum. — No matter what dangers awaited, the princess was sure to be ready.”

I nodded in agreement. The princess sure did sound prepared.

“But,” Lola trilled, “The monstrous shark our intrepid crew was hunting wasn’t the only dangers they had to worry about. For not long after they set sail, the sky began to darken, and a terrible storm arose out of nowhere.”

I shivered a little when Lola mentioned the storm. Just a little.

“The little princess held on tight, as huge waves crashed against her ship, rocking it back and forth like a yellow rubber ducky in a kid’s bathtub.”

I must admit I was starting to find this all rather exciting.

“’Your Highness! The waves are too strong! We’ll never make it through!’ One of the little princess’ Jolly Pirates shouted. He started to cry.”

I felt bad for this fellow. Being a cat, I know what it’s like to be terribly afrai—I mean—deeply respectful of water.

“’Bloody heck, man!’” Lola said the princess bellowed. “’Don’t tell me we’re done for until you see a bright shining sign that reads: LITTLE PRINCESS WHOSE NAME RHYMES WITH SING, YOU’RE MOST DEFINITELY DONE FOR, SIGNED, YOUR FRIEND, THE PERSON WHO IS IN CHARGE OF KNOWING WHEN LITTLE SHARK HUNTING PRINCESS’ ARE DONE FOR!’”

I admired the little princess’ feistiness. She was very brave.

“Do you mean to say, Lola, that even with this terrible storm, the little princess still wanted to find Billy the Meaniebutt Shark?” Oh. That was the name of the shark the little princess was hunting, by the way. He sounded gruesome.

“Yup, she sure did!” Lola said, “She told her crew: ‘You boys batten down the hatches! Hoist up the main sail! Hold the course for Shark Island! By gum, I’ll make any lad here walk the plank if he doesn’t pull his own weight! I’m a fair princess indeed, but tough as nails, as sure as my name rhymes with pudding!’” Lola made a pretend slash in the air, acting like she was the princess shouting orders and swinging her magic sword around for emphasis.

“’Aye! Aye! Captain Princess!’ the Jolly Pirates shouted,” Lola said. “The men always got braver whenever the little princess threatened to make them walk the plank.”

“It’s called the carrot and the stick,” I nodded. I didn’t tell Lola that I wasn’t 100% sure about that, though.

“’Don’t worry men! I’ll stand at the prow of the ship and hack and slash away at this fearsome storm with my magical sword Big Bad Mum!’”

“Wait a minute,” I interrupted. “Are you telling me the little princess’ sword can cut water?”

“It sure can!” Lola nodded.

I considered this. “Wow! The little princess whose name rhymes with king is awesome!”

“She sure is,” Lola agreed. “She hacked and slashed at the waves all night, as the storm punched and kicked at the H.M.S. Bookshelf, while the princess’ loyal but sometimes scaredy and naughty crew struggled to keep the ship from sinking and falling apart.”

“And even though it was touch and go there for awhile, the little princess’ bravery won the day, and the storm finally gave up and went home.” Lola said.

“‘You make me sick little princess!’ The storm cried. ‘I’m telling my mommy on you!’ The princess stuck her tongue out at the storm. ‘Nyah! Nyah!’ She taunted. ‘Big baby gonna go run to mommy! Waah!!!’ The Jolly Pirates roared with laughter at their funny little captain princess!”

“Whew!” I said, relieved. “I was starting to worry that they weren’t going to make it.”

“Thanks to the princess, they all made it through that awful storm safe and sound,” Lola said, “Oh. Except for the two Jolly Pirates the little princess gave as snacks to a sea dragon, as payment for a pretty new dress the sea dragon was selling.”

“Well, that turned dark rather quickly.” I observed.

“Oh no! It was a bright light blue dress, and it sparkled and shimmered all over. Like calm blue waves in the sunlight…to be continued.”

“Um, uh, okay…So then what happened?” I asked.

“Ah. Ah. Ah.” Lola said, shaking her head. “You’ll have to find out next time.”

“Next time!” I said, annoyed with Lola the same way I get with my human when she does something really annoying. “That’s not the way you’re supposed to tell a story!”

“You can tell a story all sorts of ways,” Lola said. “And my story has parts. Today was Part One. Next time will be Part Two.”

“Part One? Part Two?” I said. I was stymied. It didn’t seem fair somehow, to start an exciting story and then make the listener wait to hear the rest of it.

“Sure,” Lola said. “Didn’t anyone tell you that about stories, Frisbee?”

I shook my head unhappily at a sudden realization. Not only are cats bad at storytelling, we’re also pretty bad at storylistening.

By Saladinho

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ChumChum and the Aeroplane

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Now, ChumChum had seen a plane only in her picture books or high up in the sky from her bedroom window. It seemed so very small up there in the sky. If she closed her left eye, she could almost catch one in her fingers. How did this one get so big? Was there a magic potion that would make it shrink when it flew?

ChumChum wondered how the aeroplane flew. She has learned in school that birds fly. Was an aeroplane a bird then? Was she going to sit on a bird with Mama and Dada and fly off to meet Grandma? She giggled at the thought of sitting on the back of a bird while it flew.

“What ChumChum?” asked Dada, when he saw her standing there sucking her thumb, looking lost and happy and giggly.

“Dada, do we sit inside the aeroplane-bird or on its back? Will there be a seat belt like in the car? May I keep Shark with me or will all these people get scared?” asked ChumChum all at once.

Dada laughed “We’ll be inside the aeroplane Miss and…”

“AEROPLANE-BIRD Dada. Only birds can fly!”

“Yes, yes. Aeroplane-bird. We’ll be sitting inside it. There are seat belts just like in the car and Mr Shark can stay with you. Do you want a window seat ChumChum?”

ChumChum squeaked with glee “YES! Mr. Shark, did you hear. We’ll sit at the window and look out and fly through the sky to Grandma”.

“I’m so happy” ChumChum cried as she set off on her newest adventure.

By Ninja Duckie

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ChumChum tells a story

It was ChumChum’s bedtime. She was all tucked up in bed watching Dada as he dug around for a story book.

“So tell me ChumChum, which story do you want to hear tonight?”

“I want an unbook story Dada.”

“What’s an un book story?”

“Silly Dada”,  said ChumChum, “it’s a story that’s not from a book.”

Dada scratched his head. He wasn’t good at make-believe. He was a grown up after all. But he was brave, Dada was, and he bravely asked Chumchum what story she wanted to hear.

ChumChum giggled, “Don’t be scared Dada. It’s ok. I’ll tell you a story.” And she began:

Onceuponatime there lived a shark. He was blue and big and his name was Drop. But though he was big, he was very, very young. He only went to nuh-suh-reey school like me. He was not allowed to play alone in the street. Drop loved to sit on the swing and flap his fins. He ate chocolates and cookies and played hide and seek with his Dada and tickle games with his Mama.”

One day Mama Shark told Drop, “It’s time you started Big Fishie school. You must learn to swim the Deep Blue Sea. And you must learn the names of all your dinner.” Drop was scared. He had never gone out alone anywhere. He had only been to Auntie Hammer’s house with Mama to meet his cousins. But they were all so big and brave. And they didn’t play with him because he was small. Drop always sat with Mama and Auntie Hammer as they knit mufflers and drank green tea.

“Mama”, he said, “I’m so little. What if nobody plays with me? They’ll laugh because I can’t swim so well. Please don’t make me go.”

Mama laughed, “I once was as small as you are now, Drop. School was scary for me too. There were other sharks my age and we were all scared. But it was also so much fun. I collected treasures – coloured shells and coral and sea anemones and rainbow fish. I played on swings and skipped rope and played catch. I made sand paintings and we sang songs of the sea, and sometimes when we were good, Ms. Yrtle Turtle, our teacher took us to scare humans. Oh, you’ll see IT IS SO MUC..

ChumChum heard a soft snore. Dada was fast asleep. ChumChum tucked him in properly and ran to Mama, “Hi-Five Mama. My story made Dada fall fast asleep.”

By Ninja Duckie

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Little Warrior Thing

An oil on canvas by Desi Da Vinci

You can see more of her beautiful work here

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ChumChum conquers the sea

ChumChum woke up to pitter patter on the window pane. Boy, was Rain loud tonight. She was good friends with Rain. When he came visiting, she hopped in puddles and wet her palms and went splat in gooey chocolate mud. Dada made her small paper boats that they would float in the little streams outside.

ChumChum loved it when Rain came visiting. She got up from her bed and walked in to the living room. Now the living room had a very very big windows, and hanging from the top were wind chimes that tinkled in the breeze. The window was so high, that ChumChum could not touch the top even when she stood on her tippy toes. So ChumChum would ask Dada to pick her up so she could touch the chimes. She felt so tall when he did that.

But Dada was still sleeping. What was ChumChum to do? When she moved the curtains, Chumchum saw that Sun was not out yet. She looked at the O-clock, but did not know what time it was. You see ChumChum was still a little girl and time made no sense to her. She would wake up when it was morning and slept when it was night. There were evenings and afternoons and something called twilight.

Chumchum climbed up on to her high chair and rested her pointy little chin on her palm. Her high chair faced the windows, and she looked on bravely at the black Sky.

Chumchum was quiet, she knew Mama and Dada were asleep and being alone here was quite an adventure. She giggled, the sound echoing around her sleeping house, and she quickly covered her mouth. But she couldn’t help it, it was as if someone was tickling her. She was on an adventure! Sitting on her high chair, looking out the window, Wind singing a sad song and Rain laughing at her. Sky’s tummy was rumbling, oh my, it was so loud.

And then Chumchum was the captain of her high chair ship.

Shark and Cwokodile were sitting at the table across from her. She stood up on her chair and said – “I am Princess ChumChum, I am not afraid of you, Cwokodile!” She pulled out her sword and raised it high and bared her little teeth.

She called out again – “Cwokodile! This is my ship. If you come here,  I will ride my pet shark and tie you to my ship with your tail. I will then tie a pretty bow on your neck and make you my pet too.”

And she giggled and giggled and giggled some more thinking of ferocious, hungry Cwokodile wearing a red pretty bow.

By Ninja Duckie

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