Whack-Battle (plus cast list up to S1E4 (Aggretopia))
“Basically, there's three grabbers, three taggers, five twig runners, and the player at whack-bat. Centre tagger lights a pine cone and chucks it over the basket and the player tries to hit the cedar stick off the cross rock. Then the twig runners dash back and forth until the pine cone burns out and the umpire calls "hotbox". Finally, you count up however many score-downs it adds up to and divide that by nine.”
Coach Skip paused, looking over the group of assembled mammals and focussing on those unfamiliar with the game. “You all got that, right?”
“Um…” Judy began, hopping up and down on her tippytoes, her palms held together. She looked at the albino otter who’d just given the instruction and smiled. “Just a bitter slower, please.”
Coach Skip just looked at her with a slight disappointment, before turning back to Nick Wilde, standing on his other side. “This is the wonder bunny who saved Zootopia, right?”
The fox looked at him, crossing his arms slightly and smiling. “She certainly is. Don’t underestimate her, even if her ability to grasp rapidly explained complex concepts is about as good as your ability to narrate numerous nuances clearly.”
“I’d like to point out that I am the coach here,” he said. “I professionally teach this sport for a living, and this is the first time this has happened.”
“Yeah, sure,” Nick agreed. “I did read up on the rules though, and…”
“-And maybe a Whack bat legend could explain them better,” the coach said, waving out Mr Fox. “Take it away, Champ.”
Mr Fox cleared his throat, before smiling. “There's three grabbers, three taggers, a pitcher, five twig runners, and the player at whack-bat. The pitcher lights a pine cone and chucks it over to the player at Whack Bat, who then tries to knock the cedar stick off the cross rock. Meanwhile the twig runners dash back and forth until the pine cone burns out and the umpire calls "hotbox". Finally, you count up however many score-downs it adds up to and the divider divides that by nine.”
There was an appreciative round of applause, and all eyes turned to the coach. “Couldn’t have said it better myself.”
Mr Fox looked only proudly, only to be broken off by Judy.
“No, I still don’t get it.”
Shaking his head, Coach Skip walked over, before looking up at Nick. “I don’t see how this is going to work out.”
“I could explain it,” Nick said, smiling.
“Well, if you think you can beat me at my job, be my guest.”
“Great,” Nick replied, giving him a wink and moving out, in front of the assembled mammals. The great and eternal debate had recently heated up again. Girls vs Boys! Tods against vixens, Bucks battling Does, Dogs vs…”
“Cuss,” came a cry from the back, along with the sound of some dropped water bottles. There was a pause, before an opossum stepped out to the side. “They’re okay.”
“Good to here,” Nick replied, noting that that certainly would be an annoying interruption to any narration. Regardless, he had a job to do, given that the big question would be decided in a game of sports, and that sport would be Whack Bat. Unfortunately, many mammals didn’t really know the rules, so it was up to Nick to explain them.
“Right then, imagine a hexagon, a flat bottom and top and two points on the left and right. Stretch it right out, you get your court,” he explained, gesturing behind him. “Now, we have two teams of seven, eight with the mammals on the bench, and those teams are either on field or on Whack Bat. Paws up who’s with me so far?”
A bunch came up, bar those of a certain opossum.
“Right then,” Nick said, rallying himself once more. “Field there, two teams, one with bat, one with no bat? With me now?”
“-Okay then Mr Spiral eyes,” Nick said, smiling. “You can hang out on the bench today. -Anyhow, the team on the field has all seven players there. A pitcher in the centre, three grabbers whose home base can be on any of the points on the whack batter’s side, plus the mid-points. On the other side, you have three taggers, who operate by the same rules just on their side. Now, when the pitcher throws the ball, -or rather, as we live in a crazy cartoon world, a burning pinecone, the player at whack bat has to hit it. If he messes up and a grabber grabs it before it hits the ground, the player at whack-bat rotates out with a twig runner. -Otherwise, they or the taggers, depending on whose half it lands on as they can’t cross, must get the pinecone and hit the player at whack-bat with it while he’s not at home base. Why would he not be at home base, might you ask? Well, he has to run to the other side of the pitcher and knock the cedar stick off the crossrock in order for the twig-runners scores to count. Now, there are five of these guys, and between the pinecone being hit and it going out, the umpire calling hot-box as it does, they must run back and forth carrying sticks one at a time to their score piles. Now, there are variants of the game saying you only need to do this once, or that the player at whack bat can do it multiple times, multiplying the score of the twig-runners. Regardless of what it is, that score then gets divided by nine on the scoreboard by the seventh player on the batting team. Whack-Bat is unique in understanding that it might be played in schools by non-sporty kits who don’t want to be doing it, so in a great act of thoughtfulness it gives out a role for them.” The red fox couldn’t help but look on smugly as he rounded it all off. “Truly an equal opportunity sport!”
He was met by an enthusiastic clap from the crowd, especially from his team’s star player. Mr Fox whooped and cheered a little, before forwarding a big thumbs up. “That was certainly an excellently comprehensive explanation.”
“Well I do try,” Nick rolled off, before turning to Coach Skip. “Don’t you agree?”
“Well,” he said, quietly. “I must say it lacks elegance.” He brought his whistle out and blew, before waving the crowd out. “Positions! Girls on Whack-bat first.”
He looked on, counting them as they went, only to frown. “Wait, hold up a minute,” he said, as he waved the team captain over. Judy stood next to him, as he looked unenthusiastically at her. “Where’s your eighth member?”
“Well,” Judy began, trying to explain it all. “She’s a friend I have, but she works in a bar, and today their shift is a bit overstretched! She’ll try to make it if we can, but that’s what the reserve player is for, right!”
He was still unimpressed. “The reserve is there as the rules say we’re supposed to have eight players.”
“We do! One just isn’t here yet…”
The coach looked out over the teams, hovering over Mr Fox, the Whack-Bat legend he’d heard so much about. He supposed he could be flexible, in order to finally see the master in action. “Very well then,” he said, waving Judy on. “Also, we’ll be playing Mesa City variant. Now that’s when the twig-runner multiplier is the square root of the cedar-stick runs rounded down to the next lowest integer.”
“Got it,” Judy replied as he marched forwards, grabbing her Whack Bat and stepping up to the plate. The five twig runners on her team got ready too. Kii Catano, her cheetah colleague from work; Skye Autumn, her new mechanic friend; Agnes, a friend of Ash’s; Felicity Fox, claiming to be an old dab paw at the sport; and Retsuko, the red panda office worker and new member to her friend group.
Over at the scoreboard, Retsuko’s friend Fenneko was ready to keep the scores.
Judy did some light stretches as the boys walked up to the plate. Behind her, Jack Savage was in position as the rear grabber, all wrapped up in the right protective clothing. In front of her Nick and Haida, Retsuko’s Hyena boyfriend, were the two grabbers, while Mr Fox and his nephew Kris were ready in the tagger positions at the back. She looked on nervously as the last two mammals arrived. Ash Fox, Mr Fox’s son, was walking next to Ookami, the tall maned wolf’s limbs acting like neon lit billboards advertising out fast pitches. He was a colleague of both Retsuko’s group and hers, and he’d been the one to pull those three into this.
While she didn’t want to imply anything, it seemed that the boys had won from that inclusion, getting two larger mammals while her team got two smaller ones.
Still, surprises could happen, and one was right now. Ookami was going back to the taggers position, while Ash stepped up to the pitcher’s plate.
“Ready to play?” Judy asked, smiling as she looked at the teenage Fox tod.
“Not yet,” he said, as he brought out a lighter and held it up to the pinecone. It slowly glowed, beginning to burn as he turned back to Judy. He squared his legs, pulled back his arm, and dug his claws in.
“Feeling a bit ready now…”
Judy paused for a little, before tightening up as Ash pitched the pinecone. Before she knew it, the flaming mass was hurting towards her, catching light. Grabbing her whack bat, she hit it forwards, smashing the lit cone high up into the sky. Already she was moving, charging forwards and bouncing right over Ash, getting some air on his head before coming down hard on the cedar stick. It was knocked off and out, and, digging in with all fours, Judy scurried back to her home base as she heard the Coach cry “Hot Box!”.
She looked out and spotted that Mr Fox had got the pinecone, currently throwing it over to Kris.
She could have got a few more runs in, but not enough to bring the total up to four. That was how many was needed to bring the multiplier up the two rather than one.
Hearing a few claps from around, Judy smiled before readying herself for the next pitch. This time, Ash sent his pinecone tumbling. It went slightly to the side, and Judy lunged to meet it with her bat, only then realising what a mistake it was. The pinecone clipped the top of the bat and was fired straight up into the sky, ready to fall right back into the paws of a waiting grabber.
Still, she could make her twig grabbers efforts worthwhile.
Charging forwards, she had the cedar stick off by the time the cone came down again, right into Haida’s paws.
“I’ve got it, I’ve got it…!” he said, walking back out, paws at the ready. Then, seconds before catching it, his eyes widened as he remembered that it was a burning pinecone.
It his hit paws, before bouncing out as he fumbled with it. “Ahhh! Hang on…!”
It didn’t, and on one of the bounces slipped out, ready to tumble to the floor. Judy’s heart leapt as she made it back to home base, just as the cone tumbled to the ground.
And was intercepted by Nick, who skidded belly first along the floor to grasp it with his paw. “Got you!” he called, before turning it over and snuffing out the burning end.
“Hot Box!” Coach Skip called, “Hopps, off.”
She complied, walking past Nick and Haida as she did so.
“Softball doesn’t have fire,” the hyena was saying, while the fox looked up at her, that look on his face.
“You could say I gave you the slip, fluff,” he said with a wink.
“I’ll be happy to repay the favour,” she said, as she reached the twig runner position.
This time, it was Retsuko’s turn to go up. The little red panda smiled as she grabbed the massive bat, testing the weight.
“You’ll do great,” Haida called, as she looked up at him before focussing herself. Judy shouted words of encouragement too, but wasn’t so sure. While the bunny herself was a small mammal, she’d put in tons of physical practice and was still knocked out early. Retsuko was an ordinary office worker, and…
Judy’s eyes widened as she hit the pinecone hard, sending it flying. The red panda then raced forwards, the action only then reminding Judy that she had something she should be doing as well. Grabbing a twig, she leapt over to the pile area and dropped it down, before going back for more. She was soon growing an ever-larger pile, until ‘Hot-Box’ was called. Pausing, she saw Retsuko still running, albeit straining tiredly, back to her home base. “That’s seven,” she moaned, before collapsing on her knees, holding her side.
“Retsuko?” Haida asked, as the pinecone returned to the court.
“Just a tiny stitch,” she said back, rubbing it a little. Standing up and taking a deep breath, she recovered somewhat, just as coach Skip came over.
“That was an impressive swing. Have you played Whack-Bat before?”
“I was on my school’s softball team,” she said, smiling.
“Hmmm. Minority sport,” he noted. He turned to the others and nodded, as play continued. Retsuko could hit the pinecones well, and would usually make four runs to the cedar stick. However, the more it went on, the more it showed that her stitch was causing her problems, and souring her mood.
“Thanks for helping, yoga,” she grumbled, back on the bat again. Ash had been pitching well, often getting the burning end of the pinecone to hit the bat, helping to snuff it out. Closing his eyes, he breathed in, trying to focus.
“I way less than a slice of bread…”
“Huh?” Retsuko asked.
Ash paused. “It’s a mantra thing, for meditation,” he said, before looking around, a bit self-conscious all of a sudden. “My cousin taught me it.”
“I know the kind of thing,” she said happily. “Let’s do it together.”
“I guess,” he said, shrugging. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath in. “I weigh less than a slice of bread.”
Retsuko just narrowed her eyes. “PROTEIN!”
Ash met her gaze and pitched a fast ball, which she hit square on. It sailed far up, and she was running. One run, two runs, three… four… She could stop there, but looking over, it was still well out. Ookami was making a run for it, but hadn’t even reached it yet.
She could make nine and get the three-time multiplier.
She did her sixth run, before stumbling slightly. The stitch was back, but bad. She could push through though. Seven. Then eight.
On her ninth, she made it over to the cedar stick only to stumble, the tearing pain coursing through her side. Pushing through, she barely managed more than a walk back. Almost there, almost…
“I’ve got it!” she heard Haida say, and looking over she saw him catch the pinecone and turn to her. He threw it, and she made one last push before it hit her.
“Well, she’s in!” Coach Skip announced to much applause. He looked down though, noting the crumpled up red panda on the ground.
“Retsy!” The Hyena barged past him and knelt down beside her. “Are you okay?”
Crumbled up on the floor, groaning, she had only one thing on her mind.
DOES IT LOOK LIKE I’M OKAY!
DO I LOOK LIKE I’M HAPPY!!!!???
“Could I go on the bench please…” she whimpered, as he picked her up.
“Your team doesn’t have someone there,” Coach Skip said, only to get a hyena in his face.
“How about she and Fenneko swap? Huh.”
The otter nodded and waved her off. Haida went too, Kylie the Opossum coming on in his place. Things settled down as the fennec vixen grabbed the bat. “I’ve researched and watched numerous videos of this sport, and looked up a variety of techniques,” she said, focussing on Ash. “For instance, I know the techniques you’re using, and the variety of methods to counter it.”
Ash looked at her, spat on the ground, lit the pinecone and hurled it.
Fenneko swung and missed, the pinecone ending up in Jack’s waiting paw.
“Fenneko!” Haida shouted from the bench. “I think the word you’re looking for is: Ha-Ha-Ha-Ha-Ha-Ha-Ha-Ha….”
Her jaw went slack. “Oh god, this is what it’s like!”
Agnes put up a short but spirited battle, Ash giving her a large number of fast paced shots. In the end though, one hit the top of her bat and went up, falling right back down into Jack’s waiting glove. She walked off, and Skye walked on, looking at him.
“Enjoying yourself,” she said, as she got her bat.
“I just sit here and get burning pinecones thrown at me. Get rid of the last part, and it’s my usual day off!”
She gave him a knowing smile, before turning forwards. Her batting game wasn’t that strong, but it held itself up well. In one of the down times, waiting for the cone to get back, the jackrabbit spoke up out of the blue.
“Did you know there are no ‘great’ Whack Bat movies?”
“No,” she said, looking back down before smiling. “You’re thinking through ideas for one, aren’t you?”
“Ahem, Skye,” he corrected, “thinking through the ideas for several!”
Skye managed a few more bats before a long toss from Kris managed to clip her while she was out of her base. Off she went, and on Mrs Fox came, Ash suddenly looking a bit nervous. He turned to his father. “I don’t feel like throwing fire at my mother.”
He nodded, then stepped up. “Then I’ll pitch. It’ll be an example of two prime players playing. A, what’s the word… -visual demonstration! Prepare to be impressed.”
His son nodded and stepped off the plate. Mr Fox got into position, as did his wife, and he lit the first pinecone up. “Remember when I stuffed love notes into the pinecones and batted them your way?” he asked.
Holding and twirling her bat, Mrs Fox looked back, smirking. “I remember a painting a certain Foxy Fox go faster stripes on his pinecones.”
“-And that is still one of the top ten birthday gifts I have ever received,” he said, smirking as he pitched his pinecone. Just like Ash had, he threw it fire first, aiming to snuff it out quickly. Instead, Felicity Fox dropped her bat down and batted up, lifting the cone out and up. She dropped it and ran to the cedar stick, managing seven runs before calling it quits.
“And so it seems she still has it,” her husband commented, before waving to the benches, swapping Kylie out for Haida.
“And so it seems I still have it,” she said, as her husband pitched once more. This time it was a rolling cone, erratic and a bit off target. He was hoping for a high or wide bat right into the grabbers and sort of got that. The pinecone went wide and tall, but it was off to the side, and available for the grabbers to grab. Nick and Haida ran for it, but weren’t going to meet it.
“I said toss me ‘Yena!”
Haida leant down, grabbed Nick by the back of his shirt, and hurled him upwards.
“NOT QUITE LIKE THAAAATTTT…..”
Pausing her twig running, Judy froze, looking on as Nick hit the pinecone and then fell to the ground, splatting on all fours.
“Oh crap!” Haida yelled, running over. “Are you…”
He was broken off by a thumbs up before Nick, shaking on his legs, stood up, pinecone in jaw.
He got a round of applause as Mrs Fox admitted defeating.
Finally, it was Kii’s turn, and Mr Fox wanted to make some changes.
“-But I like this position,” Jack protested. “I don’t have to do much.”
“Maybe not before,” Mr Fox pondered, pacing in front of him. “But with me pitching to a much taller Acinonyx Jubatus , you’ll be having to try and intercept pinecones above your head height.”
“I’ll hold my arms up.”
“Or,” Mr Fox propositioned, “you can swap with Ookami, Chrysocyon Brachyurus, and let him go here.”
“But then I’ll have to run a lot.”
“Or,” Mr Fox mused. “Maybe you could just stand at your home base, acting as a critical relay, catching pinecones before throwing them back at the currently home-less player at Whack-Bat.”
“The stand thing,” Jack agreed, as he pulled off the protective clothes and swapped with Ookami. The big maned wolf came over and got his safety gear on, focusing as Kii stood in front of him.
Neither spoke much, and it was a long round. Kii’s shots tended to poor, but she more than made up for it in the number of runs she got. At one point, her speed managed to let her get eight to the cross rock, only to call it quits just before the pinecone ended up in Jack’s paws.
Finally, a spinning cone glanced the top of her bat and flew straight into Ookami’s glove. It was over.
Both teams got together, ready to swap, Judy congratulating all of them while checking on Retsuko.
“I think it’ll be fine,” she said, before smiling widely. “And I got the only nine-run round!” The others all clapped at her, and she looked around, beaming. “How much did we score that round anyway?”
Fenneko stepped up to answer her. “Given that Catano got seven sticks; Mrs Fox five; Skye, Agnes and Judy four, and with your multiplier of three, once we divide by nine we get eight.”
Retsuko smiled for a second or two, before it vanished. “Hang on, when I was twig running I was getting over ten…”
“The way you hit the pinecone snuffed it out, ‘Hot-Box’ was called before it even hit the ground,” the fennec vixen carried on explaining.
She waved a paw in front of the slightly catatonic red panda, before looking around. “She’s having one of her moments right now.”
Kii nodded. “It must be very frustrating to hear that, given her stitch,” she said. “I wonder what’s she’s thinking right now.
“She’s probably just grumbling to herself,” Agnes suggested, Judy nodding.
Whatever Retsuko was feeling, it was time to get going again. Judy bounced into position, putting on her protective gear and taking up the position of the grabber behind the player at Whack-Bat. To her right were Skye and Agnes, the two vixens stepping up to be her co-grabbers. In front of her was Felicity Fox, the oldest member of the team, and one who’d insisted on being the pitcher. She was the second-tallest, so should be able to get some fast balls going.
The tallest, right at the back, was Kii Catano, their current star player. After all, what better mammal to be a tagger than a cheetah? She’d have to carry her team in that area. Judy had no doubt that Fenneko and Retsuko, the other two taggers, would give it their all. But they were smaller and slower. Even Judy could admit that the fastest land mammal might be pipping herself in that area.
It had been tough to find the right players, and their star one was currently AWOL. Still, they’d do their best and then some!
Meanwhile, it was Ookami up to bat. Mr Fox, Nick, Haida, Kris and Ash were twig running, while Jack was doing the scoring and Kylie sat out.
Mrs Fox looked on, lighting the pinecone in her paw and twirling it around a bit. Focussing in, she pitched it, doing the same fire first throw as before.
Ookami swung back with a massive swing, which sent it flying. Judy looked on in awe as it went up and up and up, unable to see whether it was out or not. Coach Skip must have had the same problem, given that ‘hot-box’ hadn’t been called. Meanwhile, the massive predator did run after run, as did the twig runners. Off in the distance, Kii was there to catch it as it landed, not that it counted as an out (given her being a tagger, and the grabbers unable to get it on that side). Still, no hot box called, and Judy looked on as Ookami raced onto his ninth run. He was still going, getting a tenth and eleventh as hot box was called. A twelfth and thirteenth were then done, as the pinecone made its way back. He’d just finished his fourteenth, two shy of the critical sixteen, when the pinecone was launched back at Retsuko.
He called it quits there, even though he could easily get another run in before the red panda caught the pinecone. He wasn’t going to risk a sixteenth run and getting tagged out.
And so it ended, the boys cheering and the girls looking on, shocked.
“How did you…?” Judy asked.
He shrugged. “I played softball for my university,” he said. “Transitional skills.”
Judy groaned. “Any other softball players on the boy’s team?”
She patently ignored Haida’s eager paws up and focussed on the matter at paw. She’d casually accepted this sport, thinking it would be an even match. However, Nick happened to know plenty of mammals who were good at it or similar ones. Things weren’t looking good.
Fortunately, Coach Skip moved himself to get a better look at the pinecones, and was able to make some earlier hot-box calls. Regardless, the maned wolf’s long bats still let him get higher multipliers going.
Closing her eyes during one of them, Judy focussed. What to do… What would Nick do?
Her eyes opened, and she quickly called a team meeting.
Next round, Ookami sized himself up and batted his pinecone. Easily getting nine runs, he checked to see Catano, spotting her still far off. He could do sixteen! He pushed further, getting closer and closer. Leaving on the final one, his eyes focussed on the cheetah again, and he realised something was badly wrong.
She was waiting out there. In fact, she’d taken a weird L-shaped route throughout… Looking to the border between the tagger and grabber areas, he spotted Retsuko and Fenneko far out, the latter tossing something straight over to Skye. They’d pipped him! He raced back over to home, but he was helpless as the pinecone made its way to Judy and then into his chest.
He slid to his home base, panting. “Well done…” he said. “But I must know, how did you do it?”
Judy smiled. “I knew you’d be focussing on Catano, so this time she grabbed the two others, dropped them off in two locations, then curved to meet the pinecone.”
“And they relayed it back while I thought I was safe,” he said, nodding. “Excellent strategy.”
“Thanks,” Judy said, smiling.”
She watched him go off, as a familiar fox walked in front of her. “I see you take inspiration from the best,” Nick said, winking.
“That hustle had your name written all over it.”
“-Albeit in bunny paw-writing, complete with adorable little ears instead of Y’s,” he clarified. “However, you’re going to have to work a little harder to outfox this fox!”
Judy nodded, before gesturing to Felicity. This wasn’t going to be a round of outfoxing; this was going to be a round of no-mercy. Mrs Fox began letting rip with fast, spinning pinecones, trying to catch Nick off guard. While strong and with excellent paw-eye co-ordination, he was in damage management mode. Still, he got a respectable round until hitting a high cone, which Skye managed to catch.
But things were looking bleak. That was confirmed as Haida stood up, the hyena hitting another long cone. Not as strong as Ookami’s, but she could tell the technique was there. After that, there’d be three mammals who actually played Whack bat!
“What’s the scores,” she called, as Haida pulled in a large one.
Jack stood up. “You girls are on seventy-eight. Us boys are on six hundred and thirty over nine.”
Coach skip looked up, alarmed. “You’re not doing your job. You’re supposed to divide by nine.”
The jackrabbit bristled slightly. “Sir, I am! It’s not my fault you discriminate against fractions.”
Regardless, the coach got up and ordered him and Kylie to swap. The opossum quickly replied that the boys were already on seventy.
Judy gulped. Seventy-two more twig runs were needed, a bare minimum of fifteen per runner. Things were looking hopeless.
“Well,” Haida said, turning back to her. “You played well, well done. But it seems like it was less boy’s vs girls, more professional’s vs amateurs. He turned back and smiled. “Still. I wanna get sixteen runs!”
Judy looked down, she needed a miracle.
Her ears rising, she looked over to her phone. “Hang on a minute,” she said, racing over to her bag. She opened it up and smiled as she saw the text. “Felicity, go to Agnes’ grabber position. Agnes, swap with Fenneko. Sorry Fenneko, you’re benched.”
“I don’t mind,” she said, walking off. Judy walked back into her position as Mrs Fox came over. “Judy…”
“Don’t worry,” the bunny said, eagerly rubbing her paws. “Our final member is here!”
As if on cue, there was a static squeal from the speaker systems, as some dramatic music, full of ominous horns, began playing.
Mr Fox looked to his son. “This one of yours.”
“No,” he said.
Haida looked up and shrugged. “Why does this remind me of Thor Ramnarök?”
“Who's that over there?” Retsuko asked as she nodded towards the vacant stands. As war drums began playing, all eyes went towards a bunny currently approaching. Her steps seemed to be perfectly timed with the music, the doe swaying her hips as she approached.
“Oh no…” Nick said as he recognized the approaching troublemaker. He then glanced over at Judy with a defeated look on his face. “Oh nononono… -You didn’t… Not you-know-who from the 10-7 bar?”
“Girls,” Judy said with a confident grin as the bunny approached. “Meet our new pitcher…"
"I'm sorry," Nick said, tugging down his ears as he glanced at his team. "I'm so sorry…"
Judy ignored him as the brown bunny sauntered up next to her. "Introducing my friend, Trisha Rose.”
The brown bunny stopped next to Judy and beamed, her bright blue eyes looking around before falling on Judy. "Not best friend?" She asked, before leaning over to give Judy a surprise peck on the cheek, casting a playful wink at Nick as she did so. “Heard you needed a little help putting the boys back in their place."
"Which boys?" Haida asked, glancing over to Nick, the fox seeming happy enough to let it be.
“Yes,” Trisha said simply with fisted paws on her hips. She gave a playful wink as she then removed her jacket, revealing a modified jersey that left the doe’s mid-drift on display.
“Damn,” Fenneko said, grabbing out her phone, searching and scrolling through. "The queen of bun pics herself." Haida and Retsuko leant in to see, before their eyes widened.
The brown bunny looked over at her new teammates and grinned, “Oh yes,” She said before glancing turning to Nick. “Well if it isn't my fourth favorite fox.”
“And my third favorite bartender,” Nick shot back.
Trisha chuckled as she strolled past Nick, a slight skip in her step.
“So, you know how to play?” Mr Fox asked as the doe made her way to the pitcher's mound.
“All I heard was Judy needed someone to lob pinecones as mammals,” Trisha said playfully as she took her position.
“Well it's a bit more complicated than that,” Haida pointed out. “Especially if someone makes a good hit.”
“So all I have to do is stop that from happening right?” Trisha asked huskily as she glanced over at Judy.
“She has bountiful confidence, that's for certain,” Mr Fox said as he took a position.
“She has bountiful followers, that's for certain,” Fenneko remarked as she snagged a picture of the brown bunny. Her new model seemed more than happy to strike some poses in response.
“Thanks, cutie,” Trisha said. The soundtrack that was blaring out over the speakers, looping on the drums, began getting louder, Trisha's cue to stand up a little straighter. “So, who's first?”
Haida stepped up to bat. “Oh, that's me. The name's Haida,” he said, getting ready.
“Nice to meet ya Haida,” Trisha said as she pulled out a creme brulee torch she'd had hooked to her belt. She clicked it on, causing a blue flame to appear, before raising it towards the tip of the pinecone. It was aflame in seconds and she put away her torch, right as the song stopped looping and roared forwards. “You can call me the PINECONE PUNISHER!!!!”
Then the immigrant song by Led Zebralin roared out, Trisha sung along, and all hell broke loose.
“ AH AHHH AAAAAAHHH -AH!
AH AHHH AAAAAAHHH-PINECONE!!!!”
The normal rules to the game seemed to no longer apply as the burning pine cones flew. With Trisha throwing them, they became burning masses of devastation, launched straight at a helpless hyena. They didn’t so much as burn out on impact with his bat...
Hot Box kept getting called before a twig runner could so much as run, and Haida seemed to shrink back and weaken with each hit.
Trisha closed her eyes as the song continued, wiggling her body to the beat. As if that wasn't putting on enough of a show, she joined in with the singing.
" ON I THROW WITH BURNING CONE’S. MY ONLY GOAL’S THE WHACK BAT OWN!!!! ”
Judy kept on guard though, knowing that Trisha could spring back to action in a blink of an eye.
If she hadn’t of been, she probably would have toppled over with the next throw. The pinecone whizzed through the air, Haida’s arms could hold no more and buckled, and the pinecone went straight into Judy’s waiting glove and onwards, carrying her with it.
After finishing her twelth roll backwards, she recovered, watching as Haida ran off.
“Was nice meeting you Haida,” Trisha called out, waving at the defeated looking hyena. Despite his trembling, he gave the bunny a weak smile and wave before turning to rub his elbow. Trisha looked back at Judy and grinned. “He seemed nice, I like him!"
Next up was Ash, the teen fox trembling slightly as Trisha stretched and prepared for the next onslaught.
“You have good taste,” he said as he lowered himself and prepared for the first pinecone.
“Aww,” Trisha said as she tilted her head slightly, her ears bobbing as they stood straight up. “Thanks, cutie.”
Ash blinked a few times at the bunny, cocking his head a little.
“Still gonna wipe the floor with you.”
His bat barely caught it, flying back out of his paws and into Judy’s as the pinecone went up. He managed one run before his mother caught his pinecone and snuffed it out on the ground. He was out, but the boys had narrowed the gap.
Up next was Kris, who came on as Trisha ordered some rearrangements of her own, Catano going to a grabber position. With the song still playing, the bunny held up a paw for a second and hopped to the beat, singing along.
“I COME FROM THE LAND OF PINES AND CONES. WE GOT CUTE BUNS AND THE REDWOOD GROWS!!!!”
“I come from Canidea,” he managed to say before his bat met her surprise pinecone. Hot Box was quickly called, the pinecone reduced to rubble, but Kris managed four runs before giving it in, the ruins returning. Catano and the others had a relay going; he wouldn’t have made nine.
Trisha then began rapid-paced assaults, the pinecones disintegrating on his bat. “You look tired? You getting tired?” The bunny teased with a playful wink.
“My paw is aching a little, but I'm good,” he said confidently.
Judy shifted her stance a little bit, knowing full well what kind of trouble the young fox had just started. Trisha merely saw that as a challenge, and grabbed the next cone, examining its smooth surface closely as a cunning grin grew on her muzzle. “Really now. Well, then we will just have to mix it up for you.” She lit the end and launched it, blunt end first. It hit right at the edge of Kris’ bat, going wide and out over the grabber's area. Still, he ran, it should go too fast for anyone to catch it.
As he raced back though he realized he was very wrong.
“That’s the kind that only opens after a fire,” Trisha pointed out with a laugh. Due to her fire, the wind speed, but his hit most of all, the sleek pinecone had opened up, and was now slowing down much more rapidly. Just enough for Catano to intercept it.
He was out, but it was on a knife’s edge. The boys didn’t need much more to win, and next up was their star player.
Mr Fox stepped up to the plate, his eyes narrowing as he stared into those of Trisha Rose.
“Mr Fox right?” the bunny asked as she looked right into the vulpine’s eyes.
“Ms Rose,” Mr. Fox said, his lips curling into a grin.
Trisha groaned and slumped her shoulders as she looked up to the sky. “Uggggh, don’t call me that.”
“Then what do I call you?”
“How about Trisha, the bun who kicked your tail?”
“Living in a fantasy world I see,” Mr Fox said with a shrug, twirling his bat a little.
“Okay, so you are now on the list of favorite foxes,” Trisha chuckled. “Nick you're now number five!”
Nick rolled his eyes and grumbled something along the lines of “blue-eyed trouble maker.”
Judy smirked and shook her head at her friend’s antics.
“Better nickname: Whack bat champion! First time playing and already kicking tail!”
There was a slight coughing as Kris put his paw up. “From experience, that is a possibility.”
“Thank you,” she said, setting the next cone, setting it aflame and clutching it like an evil villain holding a MacGuffin of doom. “MUHAHAHAHA!!!!”
She pitched it, the pinecone seeming to turn into a straight up meteor as it collided with Mr Fox’s bat, pulverizing into dust.
“And again!” she called, as Mr Fox stepped back, barely giving it the lightest tap.
Mini fragments still flew out in a cloud of debris. Mr Fox looked on, concerned. “Hang on, wait a second, I wonder…”
He didn’t have long, as the third sailed his way. This time, he pulled his bat back as the pinecone hit it, and got bits of shrapnel in his fur for all his effort.
He turned back to Trisha, confused. “What even is the strategy here? You’re just exploding them!”
“Explosions are cool!” Trisha shouted
“I think they're overrated,” Ash called from his position.
Regardless, another flew Mr Fox's way. He just planted his bat in the ground and leaned on it as the cone collided and exploded.
After about the tenth repeat, and Mr Fox’s third yawn, Judy edge out from behind him. “I don’t think attrition is working.”
“Right then,” Trisha said, looking down and tapping her foot. “Let's mix things up then.”
“Lets!” Mr Fox replied, as she spun her arms up.
"POWER!!!!" She let loose a roaring rocket of a pinecone. It was like a missile, ablaze as it cut through the air and met the brutal return swing of Mr Fox’s bat.
Slowly, everyone uncoiled from the shockwave, blinking their eyes as the devastation became clear.
Mr Fox was left holding a handle.
“Just to let you know,” Coach Skip said, as he pointed up. All eyes looked up, and they saw a burning glint in the sky.
Mr Fox charged, as did his twig runners, ferrying sticks and knocking off cedar posts, and doing their best in their one opportunity to grab victory. Oddly enough, Trisha looked somewhat relieved as Mr Fox darted past. The bunny glanced over at Judy and let out a sigh. “Was worried I overdid it and, like, his shirt was going to be sitting on top of a pile of ash or something.”
Judy snorted, rolling her head before her ears jumped up at the call of hot box.
“If Foxy gets nine runs, they’ve won this!” came a call from Kylie, and now it was game on. Kii was doing her best, charging closer and closer before chucking the item in her paws over to Felicity. Mr Fox was charging right at her, knocking the cedar stick for the ninth time before turning back, ducking down to avoid the mass of wood chucked at him.
Trisha looked on in shock. “That’s no pinecone!” she yelped, as the fragment of Mr. Fox’s bat sailed through her ears and right up into Judy’s gloved pawed. It carried her backward, before she dug her claws in and pushed forwards. Mr Fox was right next to home base, and she threw the bat piece, clipping his tail right as he slid onto it.
“AND HE’S IN!” Nick yelled.
“Does it count?” Kii asked.
“Hey, Trisha was it?” Retsuko asked, nervously approaching. “I was wondering about sharing playlists…”
“I was wondering about a strategic social media alliance,” Fenneko said as she approached the bunny, the doe's ears going up in intrigue.
Coach Skip came over and opened his rule book. “Well, it says that it’s the umpire’s judgment that counts, and I presumed that that was a pinecone. It’s the spirit of hot box that matters, though as for the runs…
Everyone held their breath.
“Ah, subsection C, part A… In case of exploding bat… Seek immediate treatment by vet, ideally Chiroptera specialist…”
“I think there was a slight homophone issue there,” he reported, skipping around a bit. “I don’t seem to have anything.”
“What, there’s literally nothing.”
Everyone looked to each other nervously. “Couldn’t we keep playing?” Trisha asked, running up to the front.
“No bat,” Mr Fox said.
“No pinecones,” Kris added from the back, as everyone saw the depleted stockpile.
“Don’t say that!” Nick snapped, waving his paws before a pinecone landed right on top of his head. The fox’s ears went down and his eyelids drooped.
“10 points!” Trisha whooped as she hopped up and down.
“Where did that pinecone come from?” Haida asked looking around in confusion. Nick looked back with his paws in the air, shrugging.
“Maybe there’d be another way of settling this?” Ash asked, looking around.
Nick nodded. “Yeah, maybe…” He reached up and plucked the pinecone from his fur, throwing it in the opposite direction to Trisha. She just put on an innocent look, one that didn’t fool the fox for a second.
They were all silent for a few seconds, before Trish began to do a little dance and grabbed Judy by the paw, twirling the doe around until she was in front of the brown bunny. “Dance competition?” shr asked as she put her paws around Judy's waist, swaying back and forth. Judy chuckled, before joining in with her friends antics.
“Karaoke?” Fenneko suggested before nudging her red panda friend. Retsuko stared back, looking embarrassed at first, before her eyes narrowed confidently.
“Ice cream Karaoke dance party competition,” Trisha suggested, garnering looks of confusion from all those who hadn't built up an exposure based tolerance of her.. “Or maybe just ice cream eating race?”
All eyes turned to each other.
“I can do that,” Judy announced.
Nick smiled. “I don’t say no to an excuse to eat too much blueberry ice cream.”
“Yum!” Jack said.
“I can get excited about that,” Skye chirped in, as everyone else chimed up.
“Do sorbet’s count?” went Ash.
“Fortunately I know methods of meditating out of brain freeze,” stated Kris.
“Could you share that?” Agnes asked.
“This’ll give the kits brain a sugar rush,” Mrs Fox worried, “but okay.”
“Honey,” Mr Fox reassured, “how about we eat enough to put them in a food coma.”
“Do they have mochi ice cream?” Retsuko asked.
“You like mochi too, so do I" Haida chimed in.
“As long as I can collect all the pictures for my Instagram and show off against Tsunoda, count me in.” Fenneko agreed.
“I prefer plain green tea,” said Ookami.
“My figure will hate me, but okay,” said a reluctant Kii.
“I have a 50% loyalty discount at a nearby place,” Kylie chimed up.
For once in her life, Trisha just remained silent. Fool them once, shame on her. Fool them twice, ICECREAM!!!!!!!!!!
AN: Many kudos for Bluelighthouse for letting me use his OC, Trisha Rose, and helping me get her character down (mainly knowing her younger self from Manta Bay, my first draft had her acting more like she was eight (more or less terrifying, feel free to say.)) As I said before, feel free to check out all his fun fics.
In any case, while Trisha may not be canon in the main series (yet) (?), here’s who are. It’s the cast list so far.
Cast list (at the end of S1E4 (Aggretopia)):
Nick Wilde: the reformed ex-hustler turned cop, partner of Judy Hopps. Saved Ash Fix in ‘Different’, and was a family friend ever since.
Judy Hopps: Zootopia’s own bunny cop. Partner of Nick Wilde.
Kii Catano: A female cheetah officer, who’s getting to know Judy. Tends to assist detectives Dave and Basil.
Detectives Dave and Basil Dawson: Husband and husband, the two mice are the ZPD’s newest detectives, onboard with everyone else to look into the nighthowler theft from ‘Flora and Fauna’.
Chief Bogo: Da chief.
Fox/Silverfox family and co.
Mr Fox (Frederick ‘Foxy’ Fox): Ex-ranger, current newspaper writer and pest controller, father to Ash Fox.
Mrs Fox (Felicity Fox): Wife of mr Fox, mother of Ash Fox.
Ash Fox: the angsty teenage son of Mr and Mrs Fox. Trying to embrace life after a very dark moment, despite coming off as a bit ‘different’ at times. Slightly older (but much shorter) cousin to Kris.
Dr William Silverfox: Mrs Fox’s brother in law, husband to her (deceased) sister, and father of Kristofferson Silverfox. Emigrated to Zootopia from Canidea after recovering from a serious case of double pneumonia, caused by an ice fishing accident.
Kristofferson Silverfox: Son of Dr Silverfox. Sent to live with his Aunt and Uncle due to his father’s illness. A very well adjusted, mature and gifted mammal, though due to the accident he has a slight phobia of the cold. Slightly younger (but much taller) cousin to Ash.
Kylie: Opossum sidekick to Mr Fox.
Remmy and Remus packson (wolves); Mitch Dewclaw (wildcat); Maisy Calrama (ewe); Jenny Bourke (wombat): School friends of Kris and Ash.
Agnes: Vixen classmate of Kris and Ash, previously Ash’s girlfriend, now Kris’.
Beavis Chuckman: Woodchuck bully to Ash (and to a lesser extent others).
Brittany Voxen: Vixen form prefect to Ash, Kris and those above.
Coach Skip: Albino otter coach at their school.
Retsuko: A red panda office worker who blows off steam by singing death metal.
Haida: A dentally challenged spotted hyena, works with and loves Retsuko.
Fenneko: Social media goddess fennec vixen friend of the above. Distinctive laugh.
Anai: Japanese badger graduate at their firm, and cooking enthusiast. (Do not piss off).
Ookami: A maned wolf worker, who also assisted Nick Wilde in an undercover operation (with Nick pretending to be a young maned wolf).
Kabae, Tsunoda: (hippo, Dik-Dik (dwarf gazelle)): Two gossip mouthed workers at Retsuko’s firm.
Director Ton: the overbearing literal misogynistic pig boss of the accounting department.
Jack Savage: Tehuantepec jackrabbit writer and director, previously knew Judy in a university drama society. Bar his acting, a notoriously lazy mammal.
Skye Autumn: Swift fox vixen, a mechanic who previously knew (and didn’t get along well) with Nick Wilde. Hired to help fix a broken set.
Buster Moon: The koala owner of the theatre. He means well.
Eddie (sheep): Buster Moon’s friend and financier.
Dr Amy Lupuleli: Binturong psychiatrist to both Ash Fox and Nick Wilde.
Duke Weaselton: small time petty criminal, previously (unknowingly) involved in the first nighthowler crisis. Had an unfortunate run in with a pair of big cats, before being arrested by Nick and Judy.