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A Card in Time

Chapter Text

“I said to go to the left!” a voice cried out from the dark alleyway of Mafia Kingdom.

“I did go to the left!” another, more high-pitched(and more owo) voice, cried back to the former.

“My left!”

“My left?”

“NO! MY left!”

“OH! My left!”

“NO NO NO! MY LEFT!”

“Ohhhh...YOUR left!”

“Yeah! MY left!”

A blonde girl, with a red cape, rolled her amber eyes, trying to beat up some Mafia goons.

“WOULD YOU TWO SHUT UP? I’M TRYING TO DO SOMETHING HERE!!” Mu shouted towards the alleyway.

“Who was that? I thought that this land was deserted and inhabitable!” the first voice yelped.

“I dunno! How am I supposed to know? I’m not like I’m Tim’s Friend or something!”

When Mu peered around the corner where the two voices were coming from, she saw two girls, about her age. One of the girls had a hazel colored complexion and dark chocolate hair, a pink jacket, ruby skirt, and wore a comically large cherry bow. The other had pale skin, umber hair, a ponytail, yellow cape, cerise dress, and a large crimson hat(similar to the first girl but with a hat).

“Huh! I never knew that there were other children were in these lands!” the one with the bow remarked. “It’s really a surprise! What do you think, Hat?”

“Hmm! It’s really interesting! Soooooo! What’s your name friend? Is Karen, Milly, Lina, or maybe Kevin?” “Hat” hyper-actively asked Mu.

“Mu? That’s my name.”

“Well it's nice meeting you, Mu! Hey Bow! You want to look around to see where the timepiece landed? So we can go home?”

Timepiece? Mu thought curiously. What’s that? Some collectible for nerds?

Bow facepalmed, groaning.

“Hat! I told you NOT to say the t-word!”

“Timepiece?” Hat tilted her head.

“YES! No one can know! No one can know about its important power!”

Now Mu was curious.

“What’s a timepiece?” Mu asked Bow.

“HAHAHAHHAHA- Hatttt…” Bow hissed. “Well, we got to go! Bye! TOTALLY nice to meet you!!”

That was the only thing Bow said before the two disappeared back into the dark shadows. Leaving Mu and the pile of beaten up Mafia, alone.

Chapter Text

“Hat! Why did you mention the timepieces to that ‘Mu’? You know we can’t tell random people about the time pieces!” Bow exclaimed in the shadows, as the two walked anywhere else that wasn’t near that girl they just encountered.

“I know...I know.. I was just...really want to go back home…or at least visit there,” Hat sheepishly mumbled. “Though… I don’t want to go back to Time…”

Bow sighed, “Yeah. Me too… but we must not tell any more people! It’s...for our protection and its. We only have two timepieces left! We NEED to find the rest of the timepieces!”

“Ugh, yeah, I know already,” Hat grunted. “Don’t need to remind me. ‘Cause its always MY fault.”

“...Hat, you know that’s not true-”

“DON’T LIE TO ME BOW! DON’T LIE TO YOURSELF! YOU KNOW IT’S TRUE!! I MADE THE TIMEPIECES FALL DOWN HERE! I MADE TIM SICK! I MADE TIM’S FRIEND BE LOCKED UP! I MADE THOR NEARLY DIE! I MADE ALL THOSE...THOSE HORRIBLE FIRES!! AND DID THEM ON PURPOSE!!” Hat Kid shrieked, seemingly manically.

Bow Kid was silent. The air was silent. The only sound was Hat’s heavy breathing. Other than that, you could hear a pin drop.

“You...what?”

“THOSE FIRES! I CREATED THEM! I COMMITTED...I COMMITTED... ”

“It’s...it’s fine Hat-”

“NO! No..No it isn’t. Don’t try to defend me anymore…” Hat choked out.

“But everyone deserves a second chance! That’s what you always say!” Bow exclaimed, pointing out the fact.

“Though in this case, I’ve taken too many second chances!”

“It's NOT your fault Hat! It was never your fault! It was the timepieces’ fault! Your immunity hadn’t properly developed and you were in charge of touching the timepieces, DAILY!! AND those things could be dangerous to our people who don’t have immunity developed!” Bow flailed her arms for a effect.

“..I suppose you’re right Bow...You’re the best sister you know that?”

“I guess I am. But, let’s focus on finding some shelter somewhere that isn’t near those...men or Mu."

“Good idea Bow.”

Chapter Text

Mu sat in her cave, frowning. She usually wouldn’t be just sitting there, but be fishing, looking for scraps, sleeping, or at least beating up the ones who wronged her. Yet, she sat there, pondering what that “timepiece” is. The blonde had seen something of a meteor shower yesterday, though the “meteors” were pink. Not white like other stars, but pink. Or red. Whatever.

And immediately the day after two girls show up? There was something sketchy(not as sketchy as the Mafia of course!) going on, and Mu was going to find out what it was. But… she should use the appearance of those two to her advantage. Like...defeating the Mafia once and for all!
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“Boooooooooowwwwwwwww, I’m hungryyyyyyyyyy.”

“Bowwwwwwwwwww, I’m tiiiiiiirrrrrreeeedddd.”

“Bowwwwwwwww, I want waaaaaaterrrrrrr.”

“Bowwwwwwwwwwwww I want coooookiiiiiieeeeeessssss.”

“Boooowwwww, I-”

“HAT WOULD YOU JUST SHUT UP? I’M TRYING TO FIND WATER, SHELTER, AND FOOD!”

“But Bowwwwwwwwwwwww, I wa-”

“SHUT UP!”

“What is that...noise at this hour?” a strangely sweet voice asked, tiredly.

“LOOK AT WHAT YOU DID HAT!!”

“Oh! Hello sugars! You must be new here!” the voice exclaimed, looking around the corner to see the two “aliens”.

And who/what they saw surprised them.

It was an orange tabby cat with white spots all over, green eyes, and… a chef outfit? THAT was new.

“I’m Cooking Cat! You can call me CC!” the tabby in the chef outfit introduced herself.

“I’m Hat, and this is my sister Bow!”

“Lovely names! You two girls remind me of someone I haven’t seen recently...I’m worried about her…” the cat drifted off.

“Mu?” Bow asked CC.

“You know her?”

“Yeah! We met her this morning!” Hat explained.

“That’s good to know she’s OK. So, what brings you to,” Cooking Cat shuddered in disgust. “Mafia Kingdom?”

“This place is called Mafia Kingdom? What kind of name is THAT?” “We’re uh...visiting family!” Bow and Hat said at the same time.

The two girls stared at each other.

“Well, you darlings must be tired! Get some rest OK? It was nice meeting you!”

Hat Kid and Bow Kid had never ran away from someone that fast in their lives.

Chapter Text

Mu was laying on the sandy, grainy ground(near where her cave was), hands on the back of her head, when CC approached her. Cooking Cat’s paws and outfit were already covered in golden sand.

“Hello sugar!” CC greeted, cheerfully.

“Oh, hey CC,” Mu greeted back. “It's been awhile hasn’t it?”

“It really is. How have you been?”

“I’ve been pretty good. Beating up the Mafia, the usual. You?”

“Still cooking for the Mafia…” Cooking Cat sighed. “I wish we can have our home back…”

“Soon CC, soon. Just need to wait for those… ‘Hat’ and ‘Bow’.”

The tabby cat nodded.

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“Dang it Time! It’s raining! Agh!” Hat cursed.

“Hat! No cursing!”

“What? Its true! We may have our raincoats and boots but we’re drenched in water and mud! It’s disgusting!”

Bow scoffed, “You do have a point.”

“Of course I do! Wait...is that… a pink shiney on the roof tops?”

“W-what? Somebody already has it?! In this weather?!”

“I guess so, lets go get them!” Hat proposed, excited to kick some butt.

Bow was shaking her head, as the two girls jumped from rooftop to rooftop.

------------------------------------

“Hey!” Hat shouted to the trembling Mafia man with the weird swirly glasses and goofy tie. “That’s mine!”

“"It's... IT'S THE SLIMY SPACE ALIENS! MAFIA SAW SPACESHIP! MAFIA KNEW ALL ALONG! MAFIA IS BEING INVADED BY ALIENS! BUT NOBODY BELIEVE MAFIA!" the goofy Mafia man burst out, unexpectedly, earning two yelps.

“What...what spaceship? We don’t have a spaceship...” Bow muttered.

“WELP! WHATEVER! That timepiece is MINE!” Hat narrowed her eyes, grumbling about how rude people are these days.

But the mud that covered her, made it look that she really, truly was an alien, and the fact that she was grumbling didn’t help. The Mafia man screamed and sprinted away.

“Well this is going to be harder than I thought.”

Bow slapped her head, again for the trillionth time.

Chapter Text

Hat huffed. Geez, what’s with this idiotic show-biz and money obessed moron? Why doesn’t he just give her the time piece?

“LIGHTS ACTION SHOWTIME!” the Mafia Boss announced, grandly, yet stupidly.

How did she get into this mess? Why didn’t she just take Bow with her? Oh yeah...she wanted to get some extra snooze time…and Mu asked her to come....

---------------------------------

“So you want me to take you to a place where we can beat up people?” Mu offered to Hat, many hours earlier. “I mean...it’s your choice.”

Hat nodded, “Sure why not? I just want the timepiece! I almost got them all from here!”

“Say...what even is a timepiece?”

“W-what?”

“What’s a timepiece?” Mu asked again.

“...It’s a… it’s a family heirloom,” Hat Kid lied.

“OK then…Well, meet me at the Mafia Castle HQ!”

“Mafia...Castle ...HQ…?”

“Don’t ask.”

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“AAAAA!” Hat screamed as she flopped onto the floating island’s ground. Being shot out of a canon was NOT the best way to transport to a floating island’s castle.

“You’ll get used to that soon enough, but right now get these goons outa my way!” Mu demanded from the stone roof. How did she get there anyways?

Despite all the questions Hat Kid had, she nodded and swung her trusty umbrella at the Mafia goons, and they poofed without another word.

“Good job kid!” Mu said, as she jumped down from the roof, and landed onto one of the orange button pads.

“I’m not a kid…” Hat mumbled to herself as she sulked towards the other button pad.

“FINALLY! I CAN FINALLY GO IN THERE WITHOUT CC!”

And the two of them walked inside the castle/casino/restaurant.

----------------------------

“You go inside and be a distraction to the Mafia Boss and his goons, while I take the kill!” Mu pointed towards the freezer door.

What a bossy girl...Hat thought to herself.

The hatted child jumped from one of the selves to another, shivering, until she finally got to the vent and crawled in.

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“OOF!”

Hat Kid noticed a man with a dark mustache and chef hat on a throne.

“Pftt...He’s the king?” Hat laughed to herself. But stopped giggling when she saw 3 Mafia goons coming after her, not looking like they just wanted to chat and have small talk. “Yeep!”

The alien easily avoided the punches and head butts of the Mafia goons, but had been taken by surprise, when she saw a metal gate preventing her from going any further. She yelped as she saw even more Mafia goons coming after her.

Hat Kid again, dodged the goons, and the gate slowly was retracted.

“So... it is you!" the man announced.

“How do you know me?!” the child asked the king.

"Ever since you landed in Mafia Kingdom, it's been raining with these magical hourglasses!" the Mafia Boss ignored her question and continued on.

"You must be very lost, kid with the hat. You're in the heart of our kingdom, standing before the most powerful man you will ever witness. Everything you've ever owned belongs to me now."

“Including this hourglass piece. If you want it, we'll have to settle it in true Mafia style!"

Oh Time, Hat thought. I’m screwed aren’t I?

“LIGHTS! ACTION! IT’S….SHOWTIME!”

“WHYYYYY???!!!” Hat screeched as she barely dodged the sandbags and the Mafia goon.

“SUPER CHARGE!”

“TIME NO-”

“MAFIAAAAAAAA BALLL!!” somehow summoning a whole BALL of Mafia men.

As you can see, this was a very long fight.

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“I even have your little friend!” the Mafia Boss mocked.

“LET ME GO YOU BUFFOON-” Mu shrieked as she tried getting out of the restraints.

“HAHAHHAA NEVE-”

Hat Kid then swung her umbrella(for what was the millionth time) at the Mafia Boss, and had finally knocked him unconscious.

Chapter Text

“AHAHAHAA!! FINALLY! HE FINALLY IS DEFEATED! AHAHAHAHA!” Mu laughed maniacally, as she shook, and then the ropes tying her, suddenly snapped, and she was free. “I CAN’T BELIEVE IT-”

Hat let her go on with her rant some more, and smiled. There was the timepiece! She was about to take the hourglass, when she was spun around quickly, and the timepiece was no longer at her fingertips.

“Nuh?!”

“What even IS this? A collectable for NERDS?” Mu asked, while playing with the timepiece, throwing it around.

“N-no! Don’t d-do tha-” Hat stammered.

Suddenly, there was a loud crash. Hat Kid cringed at the future reaction from Mu and the timepiece being broken.

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

“What even IS th- Wait...WHAT!” Mu shrieked as she saw the timepiece, not on the floor, shattered and broken, but in her hands. Fully intact. “Wh- Wha? Whhattt?? Did you know about this?!”

Hat nodded, still cringing.

“This….this is GREAT! I can finally defeat the Mafia once and for all! Wait...I can make it so the Mafia never CAME to the island! We can be time-traveling heroes! Fighting baddies! And-”

“No! The timepieces aren’t supposed to be used that way!” Hat interrupted, a bit too desperately.

“What? But! We can create justice, we can create peace! Don’t you want that? For everyone to be happy, without any bad guys?”

“Well...yeah but-”

“SO WHY CAN’T WE JUST USE THIS?!”

“Because it’s going to destroy the time space continuum! And break all quantum physics!” a new voice shouted.

The two girls turned their heads to see both Bow and Cooking Cat were there. At the other side of the stage.

“CC! How did you get here? How did you know I came here?” Mu frantically asked. Now she seems nervous.

“There are two buttons to get in the castle base, that requires two people. I took the Bow sugar here to assist me. And how did I know you were here? Well simple! You weren’t at your cave, and Hat wasn’t with Bow! So I assumed that you took poor Hat here to try to kill the Mafia Boss again,” CC pointed out, at least one person is using logic.

“UGH! Mu! Give us that timepiece! NOW,” Bow demanded. “We need it more than you!”

“NO! I can use this to fight the Mafia! I can and WILL make them pay for what they did to CC and me!”

“Mu, give Bow and Hat the timepiece,” the tabby cat glared at the blonde.

“W-what?”

“I said give her the timepiece, Mu.”

“You too CC? Out of all the people...I thought that you were the one who would agree with me the most...but you just are a backstabbing… TRAITOR!” Mu screeched, slamming the timepiece and a bomb to the wooden floor.

“Mark my words...I will do justice...Just you wait...” was all she said before she had completely disappeared in a cloud of grey smoke.

The body of the unconscious Mafia Boss was also gone.

Chapter Text

Shouts, screams, wacking, and maniacal laughter filled the alley ways of the former Mafia Kingdom. (It was now called the Mustache Kingdom, I know. What an original name. 11/10.)

Every inhabitant was too afraid to move from where they were, fearful that they may be next.

The Mafia men were shaking and hiding behind the fish crates, the crows cawing on top of the palm trees, the racoons still sleeping, though the racoons were having terrifying nightmares of what was happening. The old men had wobbly knees, CC sat on the stone ground, her paws around her “knees”. Hat Kid and Bow Kid were both on top of the building where the Card Seller would usually be.

Strangely enough, it was raining cats and dogs, as if the mood wasn’t already gloomy.

Finally, the shrieks were gone. Finished. Just vanished. Hat decided to hop down from where she was, to find what Mu did.

At least Hat thought it was Mu. She wasn’t too sure who it was.

Hat looked, peered, and searched to see which alleyway Mu was, and stopped when the hatted girl found the alley way that she was in.

Surprisingly, what Hat saw wasn’t that horrific. She saw the blonde(shocker) dripping magenta goo into a jar. Adding/glueing some eyeballs and black mustache, similar to the Mafia Boss’s looked like. Mu finished the jar off by putting the Mafia Boss’s hat on top of it.

Then, suddenly, she stomped on the jar. Shattering the glass, splattering the goo, squishing the other accessories. The red capped girl smiled.

Hat noticed something off from Mu.

Her eyes. They were pink. Not amber, but pink. Just like the timepiece. She was already corrupted.

“Time no…” Hat’s eyes widened.

Chapter Text

“Hat...I don’t think it’s such a good idea to barge into people’s castles uninvited-” Bow stammered.

The two girls were standing in front of a large grey castle, colorful cars behind them.

“Eh, at least we’ll get our timepieces back,” Hat shrugged carelessly.

“Yeah but this castle looks like some movie studio or something like that!”

“So?”

“So we shouldn’t disturb them! And come back later to get the timepiece!”

“....Well, time to raid it-”

“HAT NO-” Bow shrieked as Hat started to book it into the castle. “NOT THE AREA 51 THING AGAIN-”

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“DARLING DARLING DARLING, CALM DOWN!” a penguin with tall red shoes hollered.

“SHUT UP DJ PECK NECK, AH KNOW IT WAS YER FAULT THAT THE MOVIE AIN’T WORKIN’ PROPERLY!” a small, but loud yellow owl(?) in a suit shouted.

“MY FAULT? MORE LIKE YOUR FAULT! YOU’RE JUST BLAMING ME BECAUSE YOU CAN’T EVEN HAVE A PROPER STORYLINE OR SCRIPT!” the penguin with incredibly tall bright crimson shoes shouted back.

Both birds had crowns, interestingly enough.

“Well, uh- Bad time ey?” Hat mumbled to herself.

“HAT! WHAT IN TIME ARE YOU DOING-” Bow whisper shouted. “Oh Time, we need to get out of here-”

“Wait...I think we can escape from that vent!” Hat pointed at the half-opened vent up above the receptionist’s desk/office.

“Ugh, I hate it whenever you actually have decent ideas.”

Bow and Hat both started to climb the many trophy shelves towards the half-opened vent.

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“Why is it so darrrrrrrrkkkk?? I can’t see annnyyything! I didn’t sign up for thiiiiiiisssss!” Hat complained as they tried to navigate through the almost pitch black studio(?).

“Shut up Hat, this was your idea!”

“Yeah but you agreed to it!” Hat argued.

The girl with the bow just sighed and facepalmed, for the millionth time.

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“Hu!” Hat huffed as she and Bow landed on the tall metal platform with red carpet. “Woah…. This place is really bright and red…it’s so bright that I need sunglasses- No, TWO sunglasses! I should have gotten those sunglasses at the lobby-”

“Hat! Look! It’s that penguin guy!” Bow interrupted, pointing towards the penguin with the afro.

“Magnificent! Stunning! This trophy is everything I desire... on the shelf of my living room!" the penguin exclaimed, waving his flippers around.

In front of him was a horrifically gigantic golden trophy. It was the most tackiest thing Hat and Bow had seen. And that was saying a lot.

“Well, this isn’t the real thing, this is just the replica!” the penguin mumbled to himself.

“IT MIGHT AS WELL BE JUST AS TACKY-” Hat blurted out before Bow could stop her.

“HAAAT!” Bow scolded.

“What? I’m not wrong!”

“Do my eyes deceive me? Is it an innocent soul? A heart of gold?” the penguin turned to the two girls. “Oh wait, it’s just two little girls. Well at least they’re better than my penguins. Because frankly, they’re horrible actors.”

“Good to know we’re being compared to birds,” Bow grumbled.

“Even if they’re terrible actors, that...Conductor is a no good cheater!” the penguin hissed the yellow bird’s name like it was venom. “I’ve been on a terrible losing streak! In fact…. I think you darlings can help me! DJ Grooves!”

“So, that’s his name… DJ Grooves… huh,” Hat whispered into her sister’s ear.

“Let’s get you girls a bird passport! Picture perfect!” Grooves excitedly said.

The movie director’s tall shoes clicked as he bounced to a conveniently placed camera. Bow and Hat both followed but stood ahead of the camera.

Hat was bored(like she does) and started to rummage through her large hat, when she heard the camera click.

“DARLING YOU MOVED!” DJ Grooves shrieked. “How could you?!”

“But isn’t it your fault-” Bow started.

“Here, have some markers to fix up this ugly mug shot!”

“MARKERS???!!!” Hat screamed, clearly elated.

Chapter Text

“AY PECK NECKS! WHAT ARE YA DOIN’ HERE? YOU CAN’T JUST MESS WITH THE ANNUAL BIRD MOVIE AWARDS! THAT’S FRAUD! FRAUD! HEY EVERYONE, WE GOT TWO FRAUDSTERS OVER HERE! Ugh, why are those owls so peckin’ USELESS?” the “Conductor” shouted at the girls after Grooves had gone to do his makeup or something like that.

“Uh- Can we help you with something Mister uh- Big Bird?” Bow asked, hoping to sound polite.

“Ye can help me by NOT helping DJ Peck neck with the movie awards! But...you’re not goin’ to do tha….soo ye can help me by starring in me own movie! Be back at my part of the studio at 8 in the mornin’. SHARP,” the yellow bird firmly snapped before giving the two girls ... a timepiece?!

Bow Kid and Hat Kid both looked at the timepiece, then the Conductor, then the timepiece, then the Conductor, then back to the timepiece. Both of them bewildered.

“Well, I guess our schedule is booked tomorrow,” Hat stated as she held the shining timepiece in her hands, smiling.

--------------------------

“I can’t believe we already got 4 timepieces! And we’re going to be starring in TWO movies!” Bow exclaimed. “We’ll be home in no time!”

“Do we really want to go home Bow…?” Hat murmured.

“What do you mean? Of course we do!”

“But… we didn’t get much love from...Tim… he didn’t spend any time with us…”

“We knew he loved us!” Bow tried to convince Hat.

“Do we?”

“.... What’s going on with you? We want to go home! Right?”

“... I don’t know anymore...I. I. I just want to stay here…” Hat admitted.

“But you have a responsibility! I have a responsibility! We need to take care of Time!”

“Can’t we take care of Time HERE? I’d rather stay here than…. There!”

Bow sighed. She wasn’t the only one.

“Of course you do,” Bow sadly muttered.

Chapter Text

“Eek! No no no no no! Not today, not today! I’m not gonna die today! Nope!” Hat Kid shrieked, as she dodged the many firearms that were aiming at her.

Hat was desperately jumping from one floating platform to another, like her life depended on it. Which it did, because if she fell down or didn’t jump off of the platforms in time, she would fall down onto the rusting train tracks.

Hat Kid eventually reached solid ground, only to find that the timer on the train was still ticking. Ticking to everyone on the train’s gruesome death and the train’s self destruction.

The hatted girl swiftly stepped onto more floating platforms, turning them from blank, to a glowing green. She sighed in relief, but had to sprint forward, swinging from the hook-shot hook.

She really was starting to regret choosing Conductor’s movie over Grooves’. Who knew the shorter movie was going to be so intense and deadly?

Finally, Hat Kid reached the front of the train, the Conductor stomping his feet impatiently.

“Ah ye're here lass! Guid! We've gotten some real intense footage here! Guid work today, lassie!” the Conductor congratulated Hat, as he handed her a timepiece. “Ah can't WAIT tae see the look on DJ Peck Neck's face when Ah win the Movie awards again!”

The “alien” huffed in self-satisfaction and smashed the pink timepiece down, which teleported/time traveled her back into Cooking Cat’s alley.

Both Bow and Hat had nick-named the alley, “The Spaceship”, in dedication to that insane Mafia man with the weird glasses.

Yet even though this dim-light alleyway was the tabby’s home, CC was nowhere to be seen.

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Bow was struggling to keep up the pace of constantly trotting around on the rooftops of DJ Grooves’ movie set. Having a trail of band owls with knives following her didn’t help either.

The girl with the bow then jumped from the rooftop to one of the large parade floats, the gang of owls, still following her every move.

Bow Kid was really starting to regret choosing to star in the penguin’s movie. She never expected that the less intense one would be so pecking long and tiring.
“Keep it up Darling! You still got another 10 minutes ‘till you’re done!” Grooves declared to Bow.

“Finaaaallyyyyy….” Bow cheered, unenthusiastically, stopping for the first time since the “movie”.

That was when the closest owl sliced her with a knife. Bow Kid yelped and started sprinting again.

Bow ran around the entire set, jumping from floating platform to the next, jumping on flying spaceships, and trying her best to evade the owls for the next 10 minutes.

She then landed onto the middle building where Grooves was, and the owls disappear, leaving only smoke.

“Annnnddd cut!” the penguin announced grandly. “Good job today darling! I can not WAIT to see the face of that no-good cheat when I win the Bird Movie Awards!”

The girl just sighed and took the timepiece from the movie director, who was beaming like the sun, and smashed the timepiece to the ground. Teleporting herself to “The Spaceship”.

Chapter Text

The studio was dusky and eerily quiet. Contrast of how it was when it was day, bright and blaring with noise. Conductor and Grooves’ arguing echoing through the halls of the castle. But there was no sound. None at all.

Dead Club Studio wasn’t ever like this. At least, not until the annual Award Ceremony, as far as the two children were aware of.

Surprisingly, both of the directors had won the trophy, though that didn’t stop the two birds from screeching at each other.

Hat and Bow was again, standing in the middle of the receptionist’s “office”/lobby. Their eyes the size of peaches.

“Bow… I don’t like this…” cold sweat was tickling against Hat Kid’s skin.

“I know Hat. Me neither,” Bow narrowed her eyes. “Something is definitely wrong.”

“We probably should find an elevator or something, we need to find those birds.”

Hat started to climb the trophy shelves, towards the still open vent.

“Yeah. We should,” Bow agreed, as she followed Hat.

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As the two girls were jumping from sandbag to sandbag, they heard muffled voices.

“-Ah....that bomb...Ah’m gonna...in case....someone shows...up….”

“Darlin’....Darlin’! Good…! We should… cars…! Smash...someone!”

“Finally...ideas...Peck Neck...More…. knives!”

Bow shuddered. That really didn’t sound good… Not at all.

She turned to Hat. The hatted girl was sweating an ocean, a cold, deep ocean.

The duo just continued to sprint through the basement.

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Bow and Hat suddenly stumbled upon a room. The room was even more blarring than DJ Grooves’ set. Stage props were scattered, and strangely enough, there were owls and penguins on the side cheering. But what caught the attention of Bow, were the two birds on the wooden stage.
The Conductor, stomping, more violently than usual, and a timepiece in his hands. Meanwhile, Grooves was still swaying like he always does, but in the penguin’s flipper, was a shining, sharp knife.

“What the… What is this? Some kind of highschool musical? Why is there a stage-” Hat wondered out loud. “G-GROOVES? CONDUCTOR? What are you doing here-”

“Wait...Hey! That’s our timepiece!” Bow cut Hat off.

“Huh? Wait! Give us back that timepiece-”

Hat was interrupted when something sharp slid right past her right cheek. Her eyes became even wider as she touched her cheek. Blood slowly dripping down. Bright crimson blood stained her fingers.

Hat Kid looked at the wall behind her. She saw that in the wall was that knife, stuck in the wall.

When the hatted girl looked back at the penguin director, his flipper was extended out, in a throwing position.

“Oops Darling! I didn’t mean to do that!” DJ Grooves said in the most condescending voice. “I’m so sorry!”

There was a glint of pink behind those club-shaped sunglasses.

“EY! Peck neck! Get to the point already!” the Conductor screeched. There was also a shine of pink beneath his hat.

“I’m on it, I’m on it, darling! Be patient! Anyways! I- WE need this timepiece to fix our lives! Our whole careers! And THIS is the answer to all of our problems!”

“Well you can’t have it! It’s ours! So give it to us!” Hat huffed.

Another knife went at her, but it luckily missed. Though narrowly.

“Damnit Darling!” Grooves shrieked, as he raised his flipper, and sky-blue cars were suddenly going after the two girls.

Bow and Hat easily evaded the cars, but the owl(?) suddenly came out of nowhere and tried to stab them.

“AHHAA! Take that peck necks!” Conductor squalled, slashing a part of the stage off.

They also were able to dodge the knives, and even being able to hit the director.

Though they kept getting attacked constantly. It was like a cat trying to catch a little mouse over and over.

Cars, disco balls, knives, the birds themselves, kept going after them.

Until finally, both Hat and Bow Kid were able to hit them with their umbrellas one last time, knocking them out.

But no before they hollered, “PECK NECCCCK!” “I HATE YOU DARRRRLINGGGG!”

Hat sighed in relief and tiredness, and took the timepiece and Bow’s hand. The hatted alien smashed the timepiece to ground and teleported themselves out of Dead Club Studio.

Chapter Text

“Hat, I don’t think we should go in there! It could be dangerous! Plus it looks like it could murder us!” The girl with the bow’s body was visibly shaking.

“Nahh, I bet it’s just looks creepy-” Hat started, but was startled by a gigantic amethyst spider. “Okayyy! NOPE! NADA, LET’S GET OUT OF HERE-”

As the two girls turned away to vacate the forest, little thorny vines tripped Hat, triggering the trap.

“AHAHAHAHHA! FOOOOOOOOOL! YOU BLEW IT! YOU PECKED UP!” a shadowy ghost noodle-thing popped out of the ground, like a worm, shrieked.

He looked more ridiculous than threatening. Especially because he had a golden crown on top of his “head”.

Bow and Hat looked at each other, feeling more confused than when they met the bird directors.

“What? You’re not going to say anything to me, the KING of Subcon?” the phantom narrowed his “eyes”. “Eh, you’ll die anyways, so tell you what, I've got a piece of paper here! Don't worry about the details! I just need you to sign right here at the bottom!"

The ghost summoned a piece of paper and a lavender quill, then gesturing it towards the children.

Hat took the “contract” and skimmed through it, then very slowly signed her name on the dotted line. Adding a little doodle at the end.

Bow, however, needed more convincing.

“Why should I sign that? How do I know I can trust you? For all I know, you could be sadistic murderous ghost king who just wants our souls and free man-labor.” Bow Kid crossed her arms.

“Was that really all a guess?” The ghost “king” raised an eyebrow.

“More or less.”

“Huh! Well… you don’t really have a say in this.” The purple ghost smiled, his form somehow growing menacingly taller.

The girl with the bow also took the paper and quill, but actually read the contents of the contract. But, it didn’t say anything about dying or soul snatching, so she signed it.

“AHAHAHAHA! YOU’RE DEAD! DEAD!” the king screeched at the top of his “lungs”.

Suddenly, Hat felt more empty than normal, her soul was gone. So was Bow’s.

“Now, come back tomorrow to do your contractual obligations!” the snatcher cackled.

Chapter Text

“Ewwwww!!! I don’t WANNA clean a toilet!!!” Hat screeched at the Snatcher.

“Well, KIDDO you just have to DEAL with it!” Snatcher snarked back, causing Hat to slightly flinch, which was a horrible idea for his ever-growing ego.

“Why couldn’t we do something more sanitary? Like delivering mail?” Bow peeped.

“Oh you’re going to do that too! But after the Toilet!”

Hat Kid kept groaning and complaining in protest, but the king wouldn’t budge.

“You either do the contract or DIE,” Snatcher finally roared at the two children.

And reluctantly, Hat and Bow strolled to where the toilet was jumping from one side to the other.

---------------------------------

“IT DOESN’T EVEN TALK- HOW IS IT STILL TAUNTING US?!” Bow shrieked shrilly.

The toilet did not take kindly to them trying to clean it, and started to attack the two girls.

“DON’T ASK ME!” Hat yelped, dodging the poisonous swamp-green bubbles.

“I WASN’T TALKING TO YOU!”

“WELL HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO KNOW THAT?!”

The yelling match of the duo kept going on until the toilet burst into millions of lost souls and the souls scattered.

“UGH! Hat this was your fault! If you hadn’t wanted us to go here we wouldn’t had our souls taken and do some ghost-demon thing’s chores!”

“Yeah, yeah, yeah. Whatever.” Hat rolled her eyes.

----------------------------------

“AHAHHAHA FOOOO- Oh wait. It’s you. AGAIN.” the Snatcher glared at Hat and Bow. “You know you could’ve just come to my tree, no need to trigger my traps EVERY SINGLE TIME YOU NEED ME.”

Hat had the smuggest smile on her face.

-------------------------------

“Advisor? Why would I introduce you brats to my even more bratty advisor?” Snatcher narrowed his golden eyes.

“Cause why not! I want new friends!” Hat pouted, her cheeks puffing up.

Bow nodded in agreement.

“Look, you wouldn’t want to meet Moonboy, he’s an idiot-” The king started.

“THAT’S NOT MY PECKING NAME, KING CONTRACT NOODLE!” a corpse-thing ghost yelled. Obviously, incredibly pissed.

The new ghost had a crimson coat with dandelion buttons, a monocle shaped like a spade, a robin’s egg blue mask.

“WELL DEAL WITH IT COW JUMPING THE MOON!” Snatcher screeches back. “THIS IS MY FOREST, MY DOMAIN, MY KINGDOM, MY RULES!”

“Time… Who is this?” Bow laughed nervously.

“Ah! Hello there children! I am Moonjumper, Snatcher’s advisor!” Moonjumper smiled at the two girls. “Although, I regret agreeing to being his oh-so-great-and-powerful majesty, Snickerdoodle Pool Noodle’s, advisor.”

“Nice to meet you Moony!!” Hat Kid happily greeted.

“Of course, now MY DEAR FRIEND SNATCHER,” the corpse growled through clenched teeth. “We got a problem with HER.”

“I can send the brats to deal with HER, don’t worry!” Snatcher flashed a “toothy” grin at the other ghost.

Hat felt like she was in the freezing, unwelcoming ocean.

----------------------------------

“And then she gave me some flowers! I didn’t pay for them though… I should find that Florist and pay for them! She was really nice… but she’s probably dead! Haha!” the Subconite who Hat and Bow needed to deliver mail to, exclaimed.

The Subconite was ranting for nearly an hour now, wasting their precious Time.

“Would you like to have some soul tea? It’s good for your soul haha!” the dead child continued. “Or do you want some soul cookies? I can ask Boss to bake them-”

“CAN WE JUST GIVE YOU YOUR PACKAGE ALREADY?!!” Bow finally screeched.

The Spadeconite looked surprised, their eyes wide like a dead fish.

“Oh! My mail? I didn’t realize you had that! Thanks!”

Bow took their package, and chucked the card-board box at their face, causing the vessel to yelp a little.

Chapter Text

“Time dang it!” Hat Kid stomped her feet onto the cold stone ground of the Mustache Kingdom. “Why do we always have to do so much work JUST to get our timepieces back?!!”

“Hat, let’s calm down alright? Getting mad won’t do anythin-” Bow tried to reason with Hat, but was rudely interrupted.

“I don’t wanna hear it Hyacinth! Why can’t ANYTHING be easy anymore?! Why?! It’s STUPID!”

Bow Kid froze. Hat had never used her birth name before. Even before becoming a Time manager and using her nickname, Hat Kid hadn’t ever used “Hyacinth” in forever.

“H-hat, please calm down! You’re making me worried-”

“It’s Anemone! Seriously! I’m tired of being a soulless errand girl for some ghost demon! I’m tired of being some old bird’s ‘star’! I’m tired of everything!” Hat(or Anemone) shrieked interrupting the other girl once again.

The hatted girl’s huffs and heavy breathing was that Bow heard.

“Look… Anemone, I know you’re tired of this. So am I. But we must persevere! At this pace we can get all the timepieces back! And we can go home and come back whenever!”

Anemone looked at her, nodding slightly and slowly.

“Good to know you agree with me,” Bow Kid smiled. “We should probably get to the Diamond Kingdom now. Gotta complete those contractual obligations.”

All she got in response was a loud groan of disapproval.

Chapter Text

The Diamond Kingdom was a small frozen island with almost no inhabitants. The leafless trees were covered in icicles, the ground was more snow than soil, and even from a mile away, it was bitterly cold.

The only building in sight was a looming manor, nearly as 5 times the children’s heights.

Bow Kid and Hat Kid shivered furiously while taking incredibly tiny steps towards the manor.

“I don’t like how cold it is Bowwww,” Hat complained before sneezing.

“I don’t like it either but at least I’m not complaining about it every 5 seconds- Chu!” The other sneezed as well. “Huh? Wait… is that a…. Subconite?”

The subconite in question wasn’t like the other that the duo had seen. It was tall, taller than the girls by at least 2 feet, it didn’t have a lavender spade brooch but a blood-red diamond. It also had a long braid tied with a frozen flower.

“Dunno! They look different from the other ones we’ve seen!”

The spadeconite (or rather diamondite) looked surprised upon noticing them, but quickly regained their composure.

They nodded towards the two girls, then towards the manor. They then shook their head, probably saying they shouldn’t go in there.

“Well… we have to go in there to mess with some old lady. So we can’t not go in there, as much as we don’t want to,” Bow explained.

The diamondite looked solemn for a second, before handing the duo 2 unfrozen flowers.

Bow and Hat just looked at each other, confused, but they both took the flowers.

Hat stuffed it into her hat, while Bow tied it to her hairbow.

“We’ll be off now! Bye!” The hatted girl waved back to the florist diamondite.

------------------------------

The splashing of their now soaked and soggy boots echoed through the basement.The water reached a little above Hat and Bow’s knees. There were candles, somehow still lit. Maybe over time the heat the candles emitted, melted the ice, turning it into the water, though that was only a theory.

Strangely enough, there was a subconite (one with a spade brooch), playing with their thumbs.

“Oh! Hey newbie! I’m just here to tell you that you’re not allowed to use your hats or bows or timepieces!”

“Bow… do we have to be here?” Hat narrowed her eyes, as she picked a corner of her dress.

“Unfortunately, that is if we want our souls back.” Bow Kid sighed.

The two time managers made their way out of the cold basement and opened the door to get out of there. Though, just as the door creaked behind them, a shriek startled the duo.

“WHO'S THERE? WHO DARES ENTER MY HOME?!”

Bow nearly yelped in surprise before covering her mouth with her hands. Hat tried not to cry. The two ran quickly away from the door and to some other room.

-----------------------------------

Thuds came running after Hat. Bow had told her to keep watch at the front of the door, while she was trying to find if there was any key to get them out of the manor. She really regretted even letting the timepieces loose in the first place.

Hat somehow knew that if she messed up, even a little bit, it would mean immediate death. Her boot got caught in the faded rug.

The hatted child desperately tried to get up, when she felt a clawed hand grab her leg.

--------------------------------

Bow tried looking for the key, looking under the canopy bed, in the closet, anywhere. Instead, during her search, she found a tattered diary. Bow decided to pocket the diary for later, tucking it into her coat, and continued to look for the key.

There was a green balloon and… the key!

The girl with the bow pushed the balloon, until the key fell into her hands. Grinning, she went out to discover that Hat was gone.

------------------------------

Hat Kid screamed in terror, kicking away the hand, and started to sprint away. As far away as possible from whatever that was. She ran to the closest door/room and slammed the door behind her.

The room wasn’t as dusty as the others. It wasn’t caked in dust, and it didn’t have as many tears in the wallpaper. There was a giant teddy bear in the far corner, a rotting wooden crib, a toy train that still, surprisingly worked.
Hat was brought back to reality when an eerie red glow neared the room. Thinking quickly, she ducked under the crib and hid. Moments passed by like centuries, until the monster left the room.

She scrambled to get up, and booked it to the stairway to meet up with Bow again.

-------------------------------------

“Dang it! No no no no no noo! Where did is it?” Bow squalled, trying to find where that old hag had taken the key. She saw in the corner of her eye, steam coming from the bathroom. “Wait… the bathroom!”

The kid ran into the bathroom, but started to tip-toe, wanting to not make more noise. The key was hung near the towel rack. Bow was just about to grab it before she saw the shade grabbing the air for a towel. That’s when she snatched the key suddenly and ran for it.

------------------------------------

Bow darted up the stairway, seeing Hat waiting for her impatiently at the top. Bow put the key into the golden lock, and it broke off.

Immediately when it opened, the two hastened into the attic. Hat took the timepiece, and smashed it to the ground, teleporting back outside of the manor.

Chapter Text

Hat woke up, laying spread out in a black void. She sat up, noticing two figures, standing near her.

One of the figures was tall, approximately five feet and six inches. They were wearing a vermillion coat, with heart-shaped buttons. A golden scarf wrapped around their neck. And a hat with a crown, sat on top of their head.

The other figure was significantly shorter, only about five feet-ish. Their appearance was like a shadow. Their skin, hair, and clothes different shades of rich purple. Their cloak was tattered, though their dress was perfectly intact. They also wore a hat with a hat with a crown.

“Get your act together! You need to get all of the timepieces! You can’t keep dragging it around talking and making FRIENDS with people!” The shadow scowled, reprimanding Hat.

“Geez Shadow. I know you’re salty about dying and stuff, but you don’t need to scold her. Plus, you were her once. You went through that.” The adult tried reasoning with Shadow Kid.

“Oh shut up Hat Adult, you’re just as stupid as her.”

Hat Adult cringed and mumbled, “Touche.”

“Why are you here Adult and Shadow? You guys know that you shouldn’t be here, that’s spoiling the future!” Hat (Kid) exclaimed. "And we don't do spoilers here!”

“We thought we’d visit you! We were getting lonely- Well I was getting lonely,” Adult chuckled. Plus, you need to go back to Time. You still are a Time Manager.”

“Ugh. Maybe we should remind you that you failed to do your responsibilities once and you have to make up for it?” Shadow rolled her eyes and snapped her fingers. “Idiot Adult?”

Adult sighed and clicked with her gloved fingers.

---------------------------------------------

The blackness disappeared, along with the two figures. Blue replaced the blackness. Hat stood up.

Her clothes and hat weren’t a bright crimson anymore. Instead it was white, with sapphire accents.

The clock towers in the distance were darker shades of indigo, clear bubbles floated about. There was a much bigger clock tower, white with robin’s egg blue crystals in it. Platforms that were also white with cobalt crystals, leading up to the tower.

The hatted kid hopped from one platform to another until she reached the top. She pushed the clock’s face slightly, opening up a vault, nearly filled to the brim with timepieces. One nearly fell out. Hat immediately pulled the clock dial back
.
She already knew how many timepieces were in there.

---------------------------------------------------

White flashed and she was forced inside the clock tower. Three children were running about on first floor, in the garden.

The garden flourished with countless blooming cerulean flowers, springing vines, and perfectly cut hedges.

One of the children was a boy, with navy blue jacket that was far too loose for him. The other two were girls, with a hat and a hair bow.

“1...2..3… I’m gonna get you!” The boy shouted, chasing the girl with the bow.

“That’s no fair Timmy! You got a head start!” The girl with the bow pouted.

“Nu uh!”

“Yeah uh!”

The other girl, the one with the hat, snickered at the two other children, tapping them on their shoulders.

“What?!” The boy and the girl with the bow cried out.

“You’re it! Haha! Try and tag me!” The little child with the hat sing songily taunted.

The boy and the girl started to chase the third child, all laughing cheerfully.

---------------------------------------------------

Screaming. Fire. Screaming and fire. Everywhere.

The vault’s face was wide open, the flames slowly burning the timepieces. Though luckily for Hat, it didn’t shatter them. Just left minuscule burns.
------------------------------------------------

“So you ADMIT to being guilty of committing arson and almost damaging the timepieces?” The Time CEO, himself, boomed from the glass podium.

“Well- I was under the influence of the timepieces, causing me to become corrupt Grandp- Mr. CEO!” Anemone tried defending herself.

“You’ll be demoted fro-”

“No. You shouldn’t demote her,” Time’s Friend (or better known as Tim’s Friend) interrupted the CEO. “She’s earned her place as a Time manager. Though she committed a horrible crime, she shouldn’t be demoted for something she had nearly no control over. Anemone, you will still have great consequences, but you will not be relegated.”

“Friend, you-” Tim started.

“Cased closed.”

-------------------------------------------------

Tim’s Friend floated beside Anemone.

“Hey Kid. You OK? That trial probably had shaken you up huh? Sorry about that.”

The little girl stayed silent.

“You...want some gloves? Those burns look nasty.”

More silence.

“Here. Gloves. They’ll protect you from burns and the corruption of the timepiece. Hope you’ll find them useful. See ya around Kid.”

The now-real imaginary friend disappeared, leaving a small puddle of black ink behind.

Anemone fixed her hat, and put on the gloves. She was now Hat Kid. Not Anemone.

At least now she wouldn’t be constantly reminded of her sins.

Chapter Text

The two kids stumbled on the slippery snow, nearly falling face first into the ground.

“Come onnn! I don’t ever want to see snow again! I thought it was just fun and stuff! Not make you freeze to death!” Hat Kid frustratedly whined.

“Me neither… Snow kinda sucks now,” Bow agreed with clattering teeth. “But at least we finally get to leave this hell hole. And we completed another contract, we just need one more timepiece ‘till we’re done with this area! And then we can visit those cats I saw wandering around!”

“Yup! At least there’s one good thing about this whole ‘situation.’”

------------------------------------------

The florist subconite was shocked at what they saw.

The two children who were here earlier, they suddenly popped out of nowhere, and appeared right here! They had come out of the manor… alive.

‘How did they come out of there… alive?! Everyone that entered never came back! Much less alive!’ Thoughts sprinted through the diamondite’s mind. ‘Why, how, what?’

“Oh! Hello Flower Subconite! You’re still here? I thought you went home!” The child with the hat greeted the dumbfounded diamondite. “You look surprised! Why?”

The subconite shook their head. Then fumbled with their coat a bit, before pulling out a small bouquet.

“Here.” They croaked hoarsely (they hadn’t spoken in a very long time), as they handed the duo the flowers.

Now, it was the children’s turn to be stunned.

“Why are giving us this?” The one with the bow asked them.

They said nothing in return.

The hatted one shrugged, and stuffed the flowers into her hat. While the one with the bow turned away, and then glared at the hatted one.

The two of them took a pink hourglass and slammed it onto the snow covered ground.

----------------------------------------------------

“... You think those two brats are still alive?” The “advisor” asked his king.

“If they are, they’re not for long.”

There was a pink glow illuminating the inside of the tree, while laughter echoed throughout the forest.