It was a clear summer day when the students of [REDACTED] filed off of the bus. Excitement flushed the faces of the many, and mild annoyance on the few. The forecast was scheduled to be delightful the duration of the day which was the perfect setting for a rousing trip… to the ZOO!
“It sure is a good thing,” Tsumugi announced in a breathy voice the moment she stepped off of the bus, “That the forecast is scheduled to be delightful for the entire duration of the day. Or else this trip to the zoo would be plain dreary, I’ll tell you what.”
“Hey, TsumTsum, why don’t you try coming up with your own material instead of copying the narration?” Kokichi crossed his arms behind his head and giggled.
“Sorry, I just plain old forgot. I’m just so plain plain that I plain plagiarized the narration.”
“Yeah, yeah, whatever, d’ya think they got any snakes here?”
“Oh, young Kokichi… I did not know you too were interested in the world of the serpent.” This time it was Korekiyo who was speaking. Korekiyo said that.
“Aw, gross… we’re the same age so don’t call me ‘young,’ okaaaay? I can’t stand this anymore… you guys are sooo boooring. And both of your voices are so breathy I might pass out from the fumes. Later, heteros! Alleyoop!” And just like that, Kokichi disappeared almost into thin air beyond the gates of the zoo.
“WHAT ABOUT YOU, HIMIKO?” Tenko said loudly, as though shouting. In fact, she was shouting. Very loudly. “WHAT ANIMALS ARE YOU EXCITED TO SEE DURING OUR DAY TRIP TO THE ZOO?”
“Nyeh… I want to see a bunny rabbit…”
“OF COURSE! BECAUSE HIMIKO IS SUCH AN ADVANCED MAGE THAT IF SHE EVEN LOOKS AT A RABBIT IN AN ORDINARY SETTING IT JUST VANISHES! THAT’S AMAZING! YOUR HEART IS SO PURE, HIMIKO!!!”
“Stop it… I just think bunnies are cute. They’re tiny and soft and they like vegetables. Just like me.” Himiko started blushing at her own compliment.
“REMEMBER EVERYONE, RABBITS ARE VERY SENSITIVE TO NOISE! SO IF ANY OF YOU SCARE THE RABBITS I’LL AIKIDO-TOSS YOU INTO THE LITERAL LION’S DEN!”
“You’re plain one to talk, Tenko.”
“Yeah! Rabbits are awesome! They have amazing stamina and love the moon! Just like me! Only a kindred soul who worships the moon, like a witch, would be able to understand my love for celestial bodies.”
“You’re annoying… I don’t dance under the moon or anything like that… I just like bunnies.”
“Did somebody say bunny wabbits?” All of the sudden the bus dwiver dismounted the bus and made herself known. “Oh, what a wovewy cwass we all have here today. Evewyone, my name is Magical Girl Miwacle Usami, but my fwiends just call me Usami. I’m so gwad we’re all here today to cweate bonds together and forge hope in the wava of comawadewie.”
“What sort of… voidfiend abomination!”
“Wah… I’m not a abomnination! I’m Usami! Magical Miracle Girl Usami!”
“I THOUGHT IT WAS MAGICAL GIRL MIRACLE USAMI.”
But during this commotion, most of the students had already left and paid no heed to Miracle Magical Miracle Girl Usami.
“OH! HIMIKO! HOLD UP!” Tenko rushed full speed past the gates to catch up. She nearly broke the sound barrier. “WHY DID YOU BOLT LIKE THAT? IT’S SO UNCHARACTERISTICALLY ENERGETIC OF YOU! DON’T TELL ME YOU WERE THAT EXCITED TO SEE THE RABBITS.”
“No. It’s just a pain. Like she was mocking me. Everyone knows magical girls don’t exist. They’re just fake anime things.”
“But what if anime was real,” said Tsumugi, somewhere else in the park, completely unprompted.
“There’s no such thing as magical girls, nyeh… and there are no cute little creatures who harvest despair either.”
“Upupupu, I wouldn’t be so sure about that!” Monokuma appeared suddenly, wearing a bloody park ranger’s uniform.
“NYEH!!!!” That was Himiko, by the way.
“WHAT ARE YOU DOING, DEGENERATE BEAR?”
“I’m the owner and proprietor of this zoological park. It’s a beary touching story, really. About a young cub who rose through the ranks until one day, using his genius intellect that was smarter than the average bear, he staged a coup against the—“
“Stop it. I already stopped caring… I’ll just accept whatever this is. Just tell me where the bunnies are.”
“Bunnies? Nyeh, I wouldn’t know anything about that, doc. I’m an only child, bub!”
“HIMIKO SAYS YOU’RE USELESS!!!”
“Stop. He can hear me. I cast a voice magnification spell so that even if I’m too lazy to speak people can even understand my muttering…” And so they carried on, looking for the bunny exhibit.
Elsewhere in the park, Kaito, Maki, Shuichi, and Kaede were grouped together because that’s exactly how you’d expect them to split up. As they were walking, something in one of the cages to the side caught their attention. A small monocub begged them.
“Hey… hey help me outta here.” It was Monokid.
“What are you doing in there?”
“I dunno! I just wound up in here. They even took my axe… my siiiick aaaaaxe!!”
Looking just past him, in the cage were many more Monokuma, but they looked like defects. Their bodies were stitched and welded together in ungodly shapes like some sort of Lovecraftian, Cronenbergian horror, only marginally less racist in source. Their eyes bulged through the exoskeleton of their metallic husks, causing cracks in their carapace. Their grins were crooked and set in all kind of vile angles, their teeth oftentimes not even fitting into each other. Oil slicked their whole bodies giving them a sickening sheen. From seemingly nowhere specific at all, numerous wires and tubes stuck out of robotic orifices in grotesque displays.
With the promise of attention, the Monokuma abominations gathered around the side of the fence, teeth gnashing, claws grasping blindly like mindless animals, and tongues lagging. They began to swarm around Monokid and eerily drag their tongues along his chassis in an entirely non-sexual, but actually incredibly frightful way. Their eyes, through laborious whirring, all fixated on him as their claws grasped at him instead.
“C-c’mon! Help a brother out! Guys? Guys? GUUUUUUUUYS!!!!!” But it was too late. The quadrio was too weirded out and decided to leave and mind their own business than be concerned by Monokid's new living horror. Although they were gone, the monsters continued to crowd him in alarming numbers until he was nearly covered entirely by their convulsing exoskeletons. Had there even originally been that many Monokuma in the enclosure?
Just up ahead, they found Gonta who was enjoying a delightful exhibit, or so it seemed. On approaching, he was merely scrutinizing a bit of fenced foliage! The type with bushes pushed up against a fence with perhaps a singular tree.
“What are you doing, Gonta,” asked any of the four because they were relatively interchangeable especially for this scenario.
“Gonta is observing the excellent display of bugs! Zoo is very well equipped! They got butterflies, and ladybugs, and cicadas, and ants, and grasshoppers, and—
“Okay, stop, geez!” This time it was Kaede, because she was rude. “You don’t have to list every bug in like the history of the world, we get it. This isn’t even a real display, you’re just staring at the decorations.”
“Bugs are not decoration! Bugs are… beautiful…” Gonta nearly began to cry as he remembered how much he loved bugs.
Even deeper into the zoo, a student was called out to yet again by a caged robot. Only this time it was… Kiibo! Kokichi licked at his popsicle which he had not paid for as he met eyes with the super cool robot boy-except-not-quite-because-robots-don’t-have-gender. Although Kokichi slowed down as he passed, he gradually began to pick up speed before Kiibo called out again.
“Oh is that you, Kiibeepboop? I thought you were the vending machine. Hah. I guess that makes more sense. They wouldn’t cage up some poor innocent vending machine like that.”
“Your sentiments are hurtful! And likely play a role in how I wound up in this cage. Undoubtedly through a systematic display of robophobia…” Kiibo droned on for a while the way he tended to. Kokichi stared at his ahoge and stopped listening. Hmm. I wonder if Kiibo was supposed to be a caricature of “overly offended social justice warrior” types, only applied to robotics, something which does not feasibly exist yet thus eliminating the threat of legitimate marginalization while casting real social issues into a ridiculous light by comparing them to something relatively sillier. This was one thing Kokichi wondered. He also wondered if robots had dicks. Because let’s be honest, he was never not wondering that. At last Kiibo brought himself about to the end of his tirade.
“So can you please get those keys for me and let me out?” Still engrossed by the prospects of robo-dong, Kokichi blindly obeyed and grabbed the pair of keys from the adjacent wall and brought them up to Kiibo. But before handing them over, he asked a few questions.
“Hey, so do you have like extendo-arms or magnetic fingertips or something like that?”
“What? No. If I had, I would have procured the keys myself already! Don’t be stupid.”
“Nishishishi! Cool!” Kokichi sat down his whale plushie which he had lifted from the gift shop and gave it his zoo tourist hat (which he had also lifted). In one flipper he sat the keys, and in the other, a camera. Yacchi was perfectly poised to enjoy the exhibit, and precisely out of Kiibo’s reach. “Well! See ya!” And Kokichi pranced away.
Himiko had yet to locate the place where the rabbits were being incarcerated for the enjoyment of voyeuristic humans to look down upon animals, but she had located, instead, the tiger exhibit which reminded her somewhat of her pet cub, but moreso of her fursona. She was thinking very hard about her fursona and also the Warrior Cats series. When all of the sudden…
“HIMIKO, AREN’T THESE SMALL AND ALSO FAT TIGER ABSOLUTELY THE CUTEST? RIGHT, HIMIKO?”
“Nyyyyeh!!! Stooop it!! You’re always so loud, I can’t hear myself think!” For the first time ever, Himiko rose her voice above five decibels, or at least I guess so because I don’t know how loud five decibels is.
Instinctively acting on her promise to throw anyone who might scare the rabbits, Tenko launched Himiko over the fence without a single thought and Himiko flew like some sort of… like a… like some sort of supernatural being often associated with flight. One who possesses paranormal abilities which allows them to use sort of… fake words or phrases to accomplish various tasks. Like some sort of… politician, or lawyer.
“OH NO, HIMIKO!”
“HIMIKO, ARE YOU OKAY?”
“HIMIKO, ARE YOU HURT?”
“HIMIKO? HIMIKO? HIIIIIMIIIIIKOOOOOOO!!!”
All of the sudden, the most pequeño and most gordo tiger of them all stepped forward and grabbed her by the scruff of her… shirt collar. It dragged her all the way into the cave where there was a massive assembly of similarly small and fat tigers with grumpy faces.
“Gentlemen,” the voice said in a voice as deep and smooth as pitch satin. “We have in our cuddly furry grasps at long last, the kidnapper of our fellow brother!”
Himiko looked into the camera and said: “Being kidnapped by tigers is such a pain.” And it was so funny that the live studio audience laughed for three solid minutes of unedited footage.
[THREE MINUTES OF CANNED LAUGHTER LATER]
Kirumi emerged from the shadows of the cave and made herself apparent.
“It’s me. Kirumi,” she said. “I’m Kirumi.”
“Oh my god, it’s Kirumi.”
“You may be wondering what I am doing. In this very small and fat cave for very small and fat tigers. I was a double agent all along. As you know, I will fulfill any task I am given. And some time ago I was contacted by an exceptionally small and fat tiger to fulfill a hit. I was to deliver them the Ultimate Mage, Himiko Yumeno. So I allowed myself to be accepted as the Ultimate Maid for the direct purpose of acquiring my target to hand over to Sargento Pequeño Y. Gordo. I did all of it just to deliver you to his troops. And I have accomplished that goal. Because my name is… KIRUMI!” And then she screamed like very loud, like entirely too loud, like what was her deal? It wasn’t necessary.
All of the sudden, for the very last time, Maki skidded into the cave holding a missile launcher and just started going ham on the trigger. She shot completely indiscriminately. It was chaos. And it was beautiful.
“Kirumi, I am Maki, the Ultimate Assassin, and I have been tasked with eliminating you.”
“HIMIKO, DID MAKI SAVE YOU YET? I WENT TO GET HER TO HELP DURING THE THREE MINUTE INTERMISSION OF LAUGHTER WHEN NOTHING ELSE WAS HAPPENING.”
You may be wondering what I am doing. In this very small and fat cave for very small and fat tigers. I was a double agent all along. As you know, I am an assassin and will exterminate any mark I am given. And some time ago I was contacted by an exceptionally small and fat tiger to fulfill a hit. I was to exterminate the Ultimate Maid, Kirumi Tojo. So I allowed myself to be accepted as the Ultimate Assassin for the direct purpose of acquiring my target to hand over to Teniente Gordo Y. Pequeño. I did all of it just to take you out. And I will accomplish that goal. Because I am Maki.”
The two began monloguing back and forth for a very long period of time and it was really annoying, so Himiko hopped in her chair she was tied in out of the enclosure and back into the zoo proper.
“Remember kids, the inside of the cage is for the animals, not the peoples, nyeh,” she said, again to the camera.
The war inside raged on as Kirumi revealed a very important fact… her name… was actually Kirumi Touhou. From her body erupted countless bullets all Undertale style as she challenged Maki to a bullet hell bullet-time battle. Himiko didn’t really care, so she just returned to the front of the zoo, still bound in her chair. How had them tigers tied a knot anyway?
At the front, Usami took wole.
“Awwight, where’s Kiibo?” She asked.
“Here he is!” Kokichi held up the Yacchi doll.
“That’s plain good enough, I think.”
“What about Kiwumi and Maki?”
“Does anyone actually care,” Rantaro asked because he had also been there the entire time. Nobody responded. So everyone boarded the bus to return home.
Nine seconds too late, Ryoma arrived to the front, only to find the bus with his classmates had departed. He liked the zoo because he liked animals and also because it reminded him of prison, which he liked for some reason. He figured he’d have to walk all the way home.
He turned to the camera and said: “Guess I’ve got a ways to go.”
[APPLAUD NOW PWEASE]