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41: Sky Idiots

The party attempt their escape from House Nefarious with the questionable help of Captain Val.

The Peeps This Week:

Content Warning: fantasy racism/speciesism, imprisonment, violence, death, brief gory descriptions and far-fetched storytelling.

LAST TIME…

Fast-paced music plays.

ANNOUNCER

Last time on The End of Time and Other Bothers:

MARISA (AS DARCY)

This is definitely not the kitchen!

SEAN

We are in the mines. House Nefarious is digging deep into the volcano itself.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Val. Captain Val, at your service!

SEAN

And they bow down.

SEAN

A sack is dropped over Eggerton’s head. Everything goes black.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

(muffled shouting)

MARISA (AS VETH)

The House of Salamander is ready to make its move against House Nefarious.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Bazooka!

SEAN

You are holding a bazooka.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Okay, now, what the what’s going on?!

MARISA (AS VETH)

All right, I’ll make you a deal.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

I need to be in my room with the two beasties and the kumquat. You let that happen and this death stick can be yours.

MARISA (AS VETH)

What is this thing you have conjured?

CARTER (AS BLAT)

It’s a test tube!

SEAN (AS NARF)

What is this switch here?

SEAN (AS PIT BOSS NOKAN)

Lady Veth, you honour us.

MARISA (AS VETH)

You will release every one of these labourers!

SEAN

And standing in the exit is the pit boss, who strikes at her.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Rachel!

SEAN

And the giant demon turns to face you.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Oh, you don’t know who you’re dealing with!

MARISA

And Darcy transforms.

ABOARD THE AIRSHIP

Jaunty Celtic-inspired folk-rock plays.

SEAN

The airship banks, rising above the city of Krannox towards Mount Susan.

The three white masts catch the wind and the light as white smoke belches out below decks, and the ship accelerates.

Standing at the front of the ship is Darcy and Blat, and approaching them from midship is a tiny gnome, Captain Val, wearing their goggles and their full flight jacket.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

I must say, Val old bean, I didn’t think we’d get away with it.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Huh, well, it wasn’t that hard. Would have been nice if you’d been there on time.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Like I said, there were complications. Isn’t that right, Darcy?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

A lot of complications. I’m surprised we made it.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

You’re looking better.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Thank you. It just… sometimes comes over me, ha ha. This is mostly what I look like.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Okay, you’re gonna look mostly like this for the whole fight?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Oh yeah, guaranteed, I’m sure of it.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Unless you really upset her! Ha ha.

Slightly forced laughter.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

But we kid. We appreciate the ride.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Okay, good. It’s not easy to keep a giant airship hidden, holed up beside a window like that!

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Yeah, it’s impressive how it blended in with the terrace, actually.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Oh, well, thank you. It’s one of my tricks.

Well, you know, we shouldn’t be long. We do have to make a stop on the way to the mountain, just for fuel. But, you know, it shouldn’t take us long.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Wait a second. Val… We’re not your prisoners now, are we?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

No, of course not, ha ha. No! Well, you can’t really go anywhere. You’d have to jump. But no, of course not.

No, no, I’m just taking you to meet the Dwoven Alliance. You know, they want to meet you.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Do you know why?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Well, as ambassadors, you know, to help them against the demons.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

So we’re being recruited for your side?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Not my side. I’m Captain Val! I’m sure you’ve heard of me.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Oh, sure. The Dragons of Neptune, you stole the giant jewel whatsit. Right, of course.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

It’s not a “whatsit”. It’s the most valuable jewel in existence.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Yeah, Blat, the Emerald.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Sure! Right. The Emerald. Yeah, very good. Yes.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Fine. Oh, I came out here to let you know your friend, Ra… Ruh…

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Rachel.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Rachel has woken up in the cabin.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Okay, I should go check on her. Thanks so much.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Yeah, you’re welcome.

Oh, oh! Oh, well, I guess she’s gone.

(to Blat)

You wouldn’t happen to know what to do with a small fruit-like thing, would you?

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Do you have a kitchen?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Yes.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Point him to it.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Okay, all right. I’ll do that. I’ll talk to you soon.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Hey, guys, look at this big green candy I found in the hold!

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Um. I think that’s the world’s most expensive emerald—

No, don’t bite it…

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

(muffled)

I can’t—I think it’s gone bad.

Captain Val, you want me just to get rid of this down the toilet?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

You need to put that in my hand, very slowly.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Yeah, but it’s really stale.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Okay, in my hand, very slowly.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

There you go.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Thank you. I don’t think you need to go beneath decks any more.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Well, I just was looking around—

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Nope! That’s good! We’re just going to lock that door. Okay, I’m going to be in my cabin.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Okay.

Hey, Blat, want to play catch? I’ve got these fairy cakes.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

You need to save those in case of future danger.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Yes, future danger! The most dangerous type of danger.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Go on, Eggerton. Take a look at that view.

You and I, we’re not regular old idiots any more. We’re sky idiots.

Theme music plays.

ANNOUNCER

The End of Time and Other Bothers: an improvised fantasy role-playing game set in the world of Alba Salix.

Your Game Master is Sean Howard, with players Michael Howie, Carter Siddall, and Marisa King.

Episode 41: Sky Idiots.

BELOW DECKS

SEAN

So Darcy approaches the cabin where she had last seen Rachel, and the door is ajar.

MARISA

So I peek through the door.

SEAN

You see Rachel lying in her bed. Her head is bandaged, and she does seem to be awake.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Rachel, how are you feeling?

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

Darcy? Oh… my head hurts a little. Okay, everything hurts a little.

I think I’m okay?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Well, that was a close call. You had me worried. I mean, that was a big demon.

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

What happened?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Oh, you don’t remember?

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

No, I just remember you diving between the legs, and the way he turned to me with that club and…

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Well, it’s really not important now. The important thing is that I managed to get the club away from him and got you out of there, and… it was a tough fight, but we made it, right?

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

Fight?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Well, just a little fight. Not too big a fight.

SEAN

Cut to…

FLASHBACK: THE BIG FIGHT

CARTER

(classic battle music from Star Trek)

Bap bap baa baa baa baa baa bap bap bam…

SEAN

Okay, Darcy, roll to what you become!

MARISA

Oh, yeah, and what do I roll here? Okay. A 7! Which means I’m a giant rodent. So…

CARTER

Were-rat.

MARISA

So boring.

(laughs)

CARTER

Were-possum.

MIKE

Wirrell. You can be a wirrell.

MARISA

Oh, yeah, okay. I transform into a were-squirrel, better known as a wirrell!

SEAN

Okay, so this beast of a demon with multiple tusks and giant arms is just looming over you… and you become a long-tailed brown-furred wirrell.

MARISA

Wirrell.

SEAN

Okay, and you see him rearing back with his club, but he’s a bit confused.

SEAN (AS PIT BOSS NOKAN)

What is happening?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chittering sounds)

MARISA

So I take my large tail, and I go to wrap it around to take the club away from him.

SEAN

Okay, let’s roll Grapple. That’s gonna be… Well, you’re trying to get something from him, right?

MARISA

Yes, that’s true. I’m trying to extract the club.

SEAN

All right, so let’s do Defy Danger. And you want to add your bonus? Is this a Strength or a Dex…?

MARISA

This has got to be a Dex, I think.

SEAN

He’s trying to strike you with a club. You’re trying to take the club away.

MARISA

It’s a 9, so it’s 10.

SEAN

All right, so that is a success. Yeah, tell me what you do.

MARISA

So the tail wraps around the club, and with a bit of resistance from him, I pull it away, and I fling it as far back up the pathway as I can. And then I go in for his shoulder with my big teeth.

SEAN

Okay, as you go to go in for a shoulder, you see a giant grin come over his orcish-like face, as he just lowers his head, and you see all six of those sharp tusks glint in the light as he charges you as you charge him.

So you’re gonna roll Defy Danger, and then you can roll a Hack and Slash if this succeeds.

MARISA

It’s a 6. Oh, plus 1, 7.

SEAN

Okay, so you managed to connect. Your teeth, you feel them sink in, you hear him growl with rage—

SEAN (AS PIT BOSS NOKAN)

Graaaah!

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(enraged chittering)

SEAN

—as you feel one of those tusks spike right into the side of your shoulder. So I need a d10. Someone roll a d10, or you can roll it, Marisa, whatever.

MARISA

It’s a 5.

SEAN

You take 5 damage. The tusk strikes your shoulder and almost feels like it comes out the other side. And you feel him laughing because the tusk is in your shoulder as he slowly starts to stand and straighten up, trying to lift you into the air as your teeth are still in his chest. So I need some damage for him.

MARISA

Okay, what should I… Oh, you roll—

SEAN

You’re a d8. Yeah, you roll for me.

MARISA

I’m a d12.

SEAN

You’re a d12 now.

MARISA

It’s an 8.

SEAN

(laughing)

Okay.

MARISA

Why did you giggle? That doesn’t sound good. I nicked him!

SEAN

How do you kill someone with a single bite from your teeth? Your two large squirrel-like teeth?

MARISA

I didn’t say I killed him.

SEAN

You bit him for 8 damage.

MARISA

Oh, he’s dead?

SEAN

Yes.

Laughter.

CARTER

You got his carotid.

MARISA

Yeah, that’s it. I just hit the right artery.

(silence)

Do I have to describe it?

MOMENTS LATER…

SEAN

We cut to a hallway where Blat is furtively running down the hall, checking over his shoulder… as a door opens suddenly ahead of him, and out steps a creature dripping in blood and ooze and skin and gore.

And the creature looks like a rather large squirrel with a very long dripping tail.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Oh, my sweet lord Loxsyn!

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(agitated chittering)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Oh, Lord. Darcy, I don’t even want to know.

Oh, you’re covered in gore!

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

So did you…?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

A demon?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

But now you’re…

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Okay.

Whoa! Rachel! What about Rachel?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(emphatic chittering)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Oh, nestled snugly in your soft tail.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Wonderful.

These are ridiculous conversations we have.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

SEAN (AS A DEMON GUARD)

(from down the hall)

I think he went down that way!

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Okay, here’s the thing. We have to get to my room because we’re going to wait outside on the terrace and then an airship filled with gnomes are going to pick us up.

SEAN (AS NARF)

(from down the hall)

I see him!

SEAN

And you hear the sound of a bazooka firing. What do you do?

CARTER

I hold on to the giant were-squirrel and attempt to push us both over.

SEAN

Okay, roll Defy Danger, Blat…

CARTER

That’s an 8. Plus Dex… so a 10.

SEAN

Okay, you grab were-… what is it?

MARISA

Wirrel.

SEAN

Where-whirl.

MARISA

Wirrel.

SEAN

You grab the wirrel, who’s carrying Rachel, and manage to topple everyone sideways… hit a door, the door bursts open and you tumble into a room as a rocket just goes right past the door down the hall. And then you hear the entire building shake as it blows out a hole in the outer wall.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(alarmed chittering)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

So the good news is, I can create the weapon again.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(excited chittering)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

The bad news is, the enemy has it.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(angry chittering)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

So let’s try this again…

Bazooka.

SEAN

And you are holding a…?

MIKE

Box of cereal.

Pop.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(incensed chittering)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

I know it’s a problem! You don’t have to chatter at me!

SEAN (AS A LADY)

What are you doing in my bedroom?!

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

SEAN

Why is that thing covered in blood?!

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Okay, uh… idea!

CARTER

And Blat opens up the box of cereal and pours its contents out into the hall.

SEAN

And you see the cereal scatter into the hall and a small something in a little white pouch drops out onto the floor.

CARTER

Prize bag! There’s a prize bag!

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(impressed chittering)

SEAN (AS A DEMON GUARD)

I think they went into your… your Queenship’s room, Lord!

CARTER (AS BLAT)

…Of course that’s where we are.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Yes! What’s in the prize bag? What’s in the prize bag?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(furious nibbling)

SEAN

(laughing)

So Darcy chews it open—it’s quite tough. And it is a… small…?

MARISA

Wheeled chariot?

SEAN

It is a small weird… It is a small wheeled chariot with a removable set of drivers and soldiers.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Tripping hazard! We have a tripping hazard!

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

CARTER

And Blat puts it on the ground beside all of the cereal hoping to create said tripping hazard.

SEAN (AS THE QUEEN OF HOUSE NEFARIOUS)

Please, please don’t hurt me, please just go, leave me! Narf will give you anything, just—please!

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

MARISA

And I, as the squirrel, grab this lady around the neck—gently—with my tail as I…

SEAN

Dropping Rachel?

MARISA

Yeah, as I gently put Rachel down on the ground for the time being. And I move towards the door with the lady.

SEAN (AS THE QUEEN OF HOUSE NEFARIOUS)

Please, please, no no no no, this is my best robe! It’s covered in… What is this?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

That, sadly, is demon gore.

SEAN

And a guard appears in the doorway.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(menacing chittering)

SEAN

And slowly backs up.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

All right. Hopefully that summer of theatre camp has prepared me for this.

Time to play the villain. Ahem.

All right, any of you mother-freakin’ demons move and I’ll kill every mother-loving last one of ya!

SEAN (AS A DEMON GUARD)

They have the queen, your worship!

CARTER (AS BLAT)

We’re not afraid of taking hostages! So we are gonna go back to my room and… stay in there for a bit while we… make our demands! Yes that’s it, our demands!

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(chitters)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

I’ll be carrying Rachel!

Thank you.

MIKE (AS A DEMON GUARD)

Very polite hostage taker, this one.

SEAN (AS A DEMON GUARD)

Very!

SEAN (AS A DEMON GUARD)

Uh, sir, my worship, what are you doing?

SEAN

And Narf slides into the doorway with a bazooka, raises it, smiles, and pulls the trigger.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(screeches)

BELOW DECKS

Captain Val flips open the catches on their mysterious case.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Okay I’ll just uh…

(startles)

What are you doing in here?! Weren’t you just outside? What are you doing in my ready room?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Oh I, um, you know, was just looking around and trying to find the kitchen so…

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

I’ll just not put the emerald down here.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Oh, okay.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Heh heh.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

(big fake laugh)

Ha ha! It’s a big candy.

So if I wanted to go cook some stuff, where would I go?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

The kitchen?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

The kitchen. Is the kitchen in here?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

No, this is my ready room.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

You keep saying it’s ready. What is it ready for?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

That’s just a term. Let me show you to the kitchen.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Okay! I bet if you put some like oil and maybe frosting onto the big green jujube it would absorb some of it and become softer.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

It’s not a jujube, you don’t need to worry about it again or touch it ever again.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Okay I’ll just remember it’s in here and uh…

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Okay I’m just taking that with us and let’s go look at the kitchen.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

All eyes on the jujube.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

So um, I had no idea you were with these other two.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Oh, yeah! I’m the leader.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Right.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Yeah I really set the tone and direction of what we’re doing and why. They look up to me.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Yeah, well you know, hopefully there’s no hard feelings about you know, sticking you in the bag and then everything that happened after.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

If I had a cookie for every time I was in a bag…

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

(chuckles knowingly)

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I think… four cookies? Maybe five?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

I—

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Does a net that completely covers you count as a bag or is that still a net? Like, at what point does material become a bag—

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

I’m trying to say sorry and hopefully about you know, putting you in a bag. I thought you were the general of Narf’s house, Nefarious.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

No. No no, I was just at House Nefarious.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Totally. I hope you can see how it’s just an easy mistake to have made.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

These things happen, like I said, all the time to me.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Oh and you know, dropping you from the third floor.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I bounce.

SEAN

Cut to…

FLASHBACK: THE ESCAPE

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Whoa!

Eggerton plummets to the ground with a thud.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

That’ll take care of that “general”. All right.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

(shouting from belof)

Excuse me!

The bag fell open down here! You want me to come up so you can tie it again?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

What? No! No, go away! What are you doing? How are you alive?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Oh look, there’s a big floating thing up by that room!

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Shh, quiet!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

(still shouting)

Oh no, there’s a ladder. Can I climb this?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

No, no, get off the… What are you doing?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I’m just gonna climb up the ladder.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

No no no no, get off my ship! Get off my ship! What are you doing?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Oh wow, it’s real high up here!

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Oh god, I gotta get on the ship. Wait, wait, wait, why is the ship moving?!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Okay everybody, let’s wrap around and try and find my friends…

Creaking timbers as the ship turns.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

No no no, don’t bring the ship back!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Hard to port!

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

What are you doing?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Hard to port! No, the other…

A window smashes.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Left, left port, not right port, left port!

RACHEL’S ROOM

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

Wow, oh my head!

So he fired?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

He actually fired, despite us having his wife as a hostage.

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

How am I alive?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Well, that’s a good question. Barely, is how I’ll say it.

FLASHBACK: THE ESCAPE

CARTER

Blat hears the sound of the bazooka once again being fired and throws Rachel to safety.

SEAN

We cut to outside House Nefarious as a part of the gorgeous perfect golden dome blows outward, raining gold on the street below, where there are shouts of people gathering it up… as a body sails out the air behind it and lands in the arms of General Eggerton on the ship.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I gotcha!

Rachel lands on Eggerton with a thud.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Well, you got me, but…

Okay well you’re here and… Oh! Rachel! How are you doing?

Why aren’t you talking, Rachel? Where’d you come from anyway?

SEAN

She appears to be unconscious.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Oh that’s not—

I didn’t do it! She was like this when I—

SEAN

And Eggerton drops her.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Yeah, she was like that when she fell on me, not my—oh.

Hey Blat!

SEAN

You see a demon friend, who looks familiar, hanging by one hand outside of a gaping hole of House Nefarious that you are passing. And you see a were-squirrel dropping down from the ceiling and launching into the demon guards, as blood and skin flies.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(warlike screeching)

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I always thought the squirrels were up to something, and this is finally the proof I needed! Okay, who’s…?

Why is there no one here to watch this with me? Ugh. This happens every time.

Rachel.

Rachel.

Rachel. There’s a squirrel. It’s killing people—

Rachel! The squirrel is…

Hmph. Fine.

Okay team, let’s port right to the starboard yow!

Go get… go get that guy.

Go get him.

BELOW DECKS

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

Wow. I… I could have died. He just… threw me out of the building?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Yes, but you didn’t and that’s what’s important.

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

Okay.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Remember when I told you about Eggerton and not thinking and no obstacles? It worked out perfectly! You landed right in his… Okay, well you knocked him over and landed on him, but the point is, you were fine.

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

Yeah. Well, thank you.

You… It’s a little strange and a little unusual how you did it, but you did what you said.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

I did.

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

You got me out.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Mm-hmm. And now you’re free! You can come with us!

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

Um… I may want to go back to my village. No offense.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Oh. Yeah, of course! I didn’t even think of that. You need to tell us where your village is.

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

Oh, it’s… I can do that, I think.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Okay, well why don’t you just rest now. We’re gonna let the captain take us to this other place we’re going, and then we’ll figure out a way to get you back to your people.

SEAN (AS RACHEL)

Okay. Thanks, Darcy.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

You’re welcome. Just sleep and don’t worry about anything.

SEAN

And that’s when an explosion rocks the ship a little bit and seems to have been coming from the direction of the kitchen.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

My bad!

MIDROLL ANNOUNCEMENTS

Music sting.

ELI

It’s the beginning of the middle of The End of Time and Other Bothers.

SEAN

Hey friends, Sean here, and we’ve made it to the midroll. What a crazy episode. I can’t tell you how much fun it is to have the table back together.

And thank you to each and every one of you that have been sharing or shouting us out on social media or doing fan art. We love all of that so much.

And I just want to take a moment to remind everyone listening that it’s okay to take a break and to take care of yourselves. I’m the pot calling the kettle black here, or whatever that is, because I was struggling with that for a few weeks. So please, take a break. Walk away from your computer. Stop scrolling—what is it called?—doomscrolling through social media. And tune into an episode.

And we’ve got a lot more coming. It gets crazier.

Anyways, all our love. We’ll talk to you soon.

MIDROLL: EGGERTON AND THE KIDS

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

All right, kids, for the last time, we’re going to get on this Podchaser or we’re going home.

SEAN (AS TIMMY)

What?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Look, we had one simple job when we left the house today, Timmy. I don’t see what the problem is.

CARTER (AS JONATHAN)

Put shoes on!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

All right. All right. Jonathan, you have your shoes on.

CARTER (AS JONATHAN)

I’ve got shoes on!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Yes, you got your shoes on. We’re all very, very proud of you. I know I am.

SEAN (AS TIMMY)

We have 4 squared shoes.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

No, we don’t have four square shoes. We have four shoes—

SEAN (AS TIMMY)

We have sixteen shoes.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Okay. Why are you both wearing—all wearing left shoes?

I don’t und—where did the other left shoes come from?

CARTER (AS JONATHAN)

Well, one of my feet is very comfortable and the other one’s in terrible pain.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Yeah, and that’s why you’re walking in circles again, Jonathan.

SEAN (AS TIMMY)

Elizabeth took all the right shoes.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Okay. Elizabeth!

MARISA (AS ELIZABETH)

Yes!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Why did you take all the right shoes again?

MARISA (AS ELIZABETH)

Because they are all correct! I only wear correct shoes.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I… I really can’t argue with that. But look, okay, we all have to hurry up. So I’m going to need you to…

Can you help each other? If you go on the left side with all of the right shoes and then you two go on the right side with the left shoes—

SEAN (AS TIMMY)

No, no, we’re the left shoes. I thought we were going to leave the… All the right people are going to leave the review—

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

We just need to get to Podchaser and rate and review the show and then your mother will stop nagging me and we can all go home and just have a nice afternoon. But we gotta get to Podchaser to rate and review.

CARTER (AS JONATHAN)

What are we reviewing?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

We’re reviewing the show. The show that we all listen to and love because it’s funny and charming and great.

SEAN (AS TIMMY)

(near tears)

I remember when Uncle Eggerton was fun!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Okay, you know what happened? Taxes and marriage. So let’s all just get on the Podchaser and do this thing.

SEAN

(laughing)

Scene.

Music sting.

ON THE DECK

SEAN

So Blat, you are standing at the front of the ship as it flies through the air, rocked every once in a while by a small explosion and a shout of, “My bad!”

Workers, all gnomes or dwarves move around knowing what they’re doing as we’re moving towards night… when you notice that you’re moving the exact opposite direction from Mount Susan, you are heading out into what appears to just be empty desert away from the city.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Excuse me, my gnome—dwarf—gnomish friend.

SEAN (AS DWARF CREW MEMBER)

(gruff voice)

Huh, what? Who are you?

CARTER (AS BLAT)

I’m one of the people that got rescued in that big mission with the explosion—

SEAN (AS DWARF CREW MEMBER)

You’re in my way. I got to wrap this rope here.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Yeah, yeah, great. Wrap the rope.

SEAN (AS DWARF CREW MEMBER)

Okay.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Um, where are we going? Because civilization seems to be behind us and we’re heading towards inky flatness.

SEAN (AS DWARF CREW MEMBER)

I got to go secure another line. I think we’re going to the Badlands, is what the captain said.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

What? Are you from the Badlands? Are you a Badland inhabitant?

SEAN (AS DWARF CREW MEMBER)

(laughs)

Nobody’s from the Badlands.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Ha ha, of course. Why would anybody be from the Badlands? Then why are we going to the Badlands?!

SEAN (AS DWARF CREW MEMBER)

I don’t know, ask the captain. I got to tie this line.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Well, I thought we were refuelling somewhere. Are you refuelling in the Badlands?

SEAN (AS DWARF CREW MEMBER)

Nobody does anything in the Badlands!

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Because they’re so bad.

SEAN (AS DWARF CREW MEMBER)

(laughing)

Yeah.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Ha ha, of course, how silly of me.

SEAN (AS DWARF CREW MEMBER)

(walking away)

Refuel in the Badlands! What a crazy…

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Ohhhh, I think we’ve been captured again.

SEAN

You see Darcy coming up from the cabin on mid-deck towards you.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Okay, good news. Rachel seems to be okay, although it’s a shock that she made it through that.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

You throw a human out of a window onto a floating airship and it’s suddenly a big to-do.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

I know, these things used to be unusual, right? I feel like at some point we would have thought it was weird too.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

I wouldn’t know, I’m completely desensitized at this point.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Yeah.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Speaking of being desensitized to terrible things, I’ve just talked to a random gnome and apparently we’re flying towards something called “the Badlands”.

SEAN (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

(squeaky voice)

Excuse me, I got to tie this rope. Oh, and you might want to—here, you can have my rag. You’re sort of covered in blood.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Oh, oh yeah.

SEAN (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

Sorry, just gonna tie this off.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Okay.

SEAN (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

Sorry, don’t mind me.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Excuse me, other gnome.

SEAN (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

Yeah. It’s George.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

George, George the gnome. Are we heading—

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

GG for short.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

GG, GG. George the gnome.

Just wondering, I overheard, are we heading towards an area referred to as “the Badlands”?

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

No, no, no, we never go to the Badlands, no, we don’t do that.

(walks away, shouting to their crewmates)

I was told we’re never going to the Badlands again. What’s going on? You swore to me!

MARISA (AS DARCY)

What’s happening? We were supposed to go to the big mountain, that’s what he said, you know, ambassadors, alliance, something like that.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

You know how I sarcastically joke that ho-de-ho-ho-ho, we’ve been captured by gnomes?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Yep.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

I think we’ve been captured by gnomes.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Really? These guys?

SEAN

Eggerton pops his head up from below decks, where he’s not supposed to be again, this time with a new batch of fairy cakes.

So first I need you to roll a 20-sided die, Eggerton, and then we’ll get back to the story.

MIKE

20-sided die. 10!

SEAN

10. Okay, cool, you pop up on deck, excited because you have a new batch of fairy cakes.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I’ve got a new batch of fairy cakes!

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Wow, you’ve been busy.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Oh yeah, didn’t you hear? I was experimenting and learning by doing.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Oh, that was you, of course it was.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Mm hmm. Well, it wasn’t me per se, it was science.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Speaking of science, uh, have you spoken to anybody down below while you were sciencing?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Oh, lots of people! We had a really great conversation, actually.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Fantastic!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

A whole bunch of us.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

So were you talking at all about where we’re going?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

No, mostly about why the black pepper really seemed to be out to get the salt.

SEAN (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

(high voice)

Hey, Eggsy! Love that talk! Fist bump!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

All right!

SEAN (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

Boom! Yeah, catch you after!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

So, um, there seems to be a problem between the bowls and some of the spices and the spices don’t know if they want to be seasoning or spices. It’s this little bit of infighting and the black pepper got real up in the grill—

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Eggerton, did you make any useful fairy cakes this time?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Oh yeah! These are super tasty.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Okay, but do you know what they do?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I don’t know what they do. Here, why don’t I just try one and we’ll see what happens.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

No, I don’t think that’s a good idea—

CARTER (AS BLAT)

This is a terrible idea—

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I’m just gonna…

(chomps)

MARISA (AS DARCY)

(groans)

SEAN

Eggerton turns to stone.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Well, now, my first thought is that could be useful.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

And if we had a yard, we could put him in it!

SEAN (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

Wait, was that a gnome joke?

CARTER (AS BLAT)

That wasn’t a gnome joke! You can—

SEAN (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

Okay, cause those are fighting words, buddy!

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Many things can be used as lawn ornaments. Let’s just keep our cool, man, okay?

SEAN (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

All right, all right, I’m watching you.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Are we going to the Badlands?

(silence)

SEAN (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

I thought you said we’re never going to the Badlands!

CARTER (AS BLAT)

I keep upsetting people with that term.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Yeah, maybe we need to find Captain Val… but what should we do with Eggerton? Should we just leave him here?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

What else can we do with him? Move him around? He probably weighs about 300 pounds.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

True.

SEAN

The ship is starting to list a little to one side.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

All right, so maybe try to shove him in the middle of this giant air thing that we’re on just so we don’t all fall off one side?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Here if we just rope him to this mast here, that should keep him secure for the time being.

SEAN (AS YET ANOTHER PASSING CREW MEMBER)

(gravelly voice)

You call that a knot? Here, no, do it this way. There you go, see?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Oh, that’s very handy, thank you.

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

Well, that’s a weird statue, when did we pick that up?

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Oh, the last mission, we rescued it from the demons.

Are we going to the Badlands?

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

No, we never go to the Badlands, I’m—

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Well we seem to be flying towards a flat area referred to as the Badlands.

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

I’m sure the captain knows what they’re doing.

We’re probably just trying to avoid some bad weather.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Uh, where is the captain right now?

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

Oh, they’re, uh… well they should, well, actually… I would say the ready room, but the door is locked, and padlocked, and has a chain around it. They might be in the wheelhouse.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Is that normal, the padlock?

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

No. And then the ten-armed gnomes? Also not normal. But I would check the wheelhouse. I gotta go, I gotta get onto the…

Really nice, really nice work on this statue.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Thank you, thank you.

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

Very lifelike.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Yeah, it took us hours to carve it.

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

Eating! I’ve never seen a statue eating—what is that, a cake?

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Uh, that is a small, uh, little cake that the statue made itself, yes.

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

Wow, beautiful. I don’t know if I’d go purple next time, but it’s really nice.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Artistic choices, artistic choices.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

So we have been captured by gnomes?

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Oh, we have most definitely been captured by gnomes, yes.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Well, we have to find the captain! Let’s go to the wheelhouse. Where’s the wheelhouse?

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Uh, the place where we’re probably not permitted to go, because we’re prisoners?

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Well, we gotta try.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

(sighs)

I just… for a little while, I’d just like to be in a safe place. Just, like, give me half an hour, like just… something, you know? Change my shirt, have a lie down, talk about something that isn’t life or death, just… you know, for once.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

That’s just not our life, Blat. It’s just not our life.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Like… I’m fine? I’m trying not to complain, it’s just, you know, it’s tiring.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Yeah, I get it.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

A couple years of this, just… just wanna sit down, take my shoes off.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Maybe we should sit down for a while, just take a break.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

No, we’ve been captured by gnomes, let’s find the wheelhouse.

ELSEWHERE ON THE SHIP

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

Hey, George!

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

(though not the same George as earlier)

Yeah, what’s up?

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

I, I was down, you know, in the belly of the airship.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

Yeah, yeah, here, I gotta tie that, hold on.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

And I found this person down there who’s not supposed to be there.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

Yeah, you don’t say.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

This one-eyed demon freak who said that he was really unhappy with his working conditions back in the city.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

What is coming to this ship? You know, Pedro just said we’ve got a statue on the main deck now.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

What is going on? This place is falling apart!

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

And there’s some crazy little tiny person that’s like blowing holes in the kitchen. I don’t know how we’re ever gonna eat again.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

Well, listen, the captain hates stowaways. What do you think I should do with this guy?

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

Eh. Put him to work.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

All right.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

That’s what we always do, you know.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

Hey! You! Get—okay, come on. Get up here.

CARTER (AS THE CENTURION)

Centurion, centurion, centurion.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

Oh, you weren’t kidding.

CARTER (AS THE CENTURION)

What type of new job do I have now here aboard your airship, centurion?

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

All right, well, we like to use people’s skills.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

Yeah.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

Do you have any skills?

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

What are you good at?

CARTER (AS THE CENTURION)

Usually I stomp things. You stomp things and you make them into pancake batter or perhaps you, uh, steal their body parts for, for other uses.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

Well, we do make wine, but not that often.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

Yeah, we don’t do body parts stealing.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

No, no.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

The boss doesn’t like that.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

Heh, not officially.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

That’s true.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

All right. Uh, what else? What do you do? Um, you know, what’s, uh, what’s your side hustle?

CARTER (AS THE CENTURION)

We lock people up and then worry about what to do with them later.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

Okay… jailer.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

How are you with a mop?

CARTER (AS THE CENTURION)

Ohhh, a mop! I’ve mopped before, yes. Usually to get blood stains out of things.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

That works.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

Okay, well, some deck swabbing could be useful right now.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

Yeah, I think that’s a good start.

CARTER (AS THE CENTURION)

All right, let me get into the new head space here.

Centurion, centurion, centurion…

Floor mopper, floor mopper, floor mopper…

All right, I’m there!

Floor mopper, floor mopper, floor mopper. Mop me up!

(starts humming)

Hey, dah dee… dee dah dee—

Watch where you’re walking there! I just cleaned that!

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

That’s pretty good, actually.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

He might work out.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

Yeah, I’m impressed.

MARISA (AS GNOME CREW MEMBER)

All right. Well, just keep an eye on him.

SEAN (AS GEORGE)

All right.

CARTER (AS THE NEW FLOOR MOPPER)

Floor mopper, floor mopper.

LATER…

SEAN

It’s about a half an hour later, and the ship is on a straight course. The upper decks are pretty quiet, and it’s slowly losing altitude. And around it is just desert, as far as you can see… when there is a pop sound, and the statue comes back to life as Eggerton, who is tied to the mast.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I have questions about what has occurred in the last few moments.

Uh, where is every—hello?

Aww. Again. Tied to a ship with nothing to do. Just wait for someone to come and find me.

This reminds me of summer camp.

It was sad. Don’t feel like getting into it.

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

I’m trying to mop here!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Wha?

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

Floor mopper, floor mopper, floor mopper.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Floor…?

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

Pick up your feet, boy! You’re making a mess here.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Can you untie me?

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

Nah, it’s not my job! I’m supposed to be mopping floors. That’s my new duty. I’m floor mopper, floor mopper, floor mopper.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Well, didn’t you used to be a centurion?

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

I used to be a centurion with them demon folk, but the demon folk always treated me badly, probably due to my bad attitude and low intelligence. But now I’ve got a new gig! Floor mopper, floor mopper…

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

But you got promoted to floor mopper, wouldn’t you like Assistant Directorship of Knot-Untying added to that title?

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

Oh, I wish Guh was here. Guh was always able to explain things to me in very simple terms.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I will give you one of these fairy cakes if you untie me.

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

Oh, now that’s a good deal there now, boy. All right. Cake me up.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Well, untie me first so I can give you a cake.

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

Cake me up.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

You untie me and I’ll give you a cake.

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

Cake me up!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

But see the cake’s in my pouch, which is under these ropes.

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

(considers)

All right. My hands are on the rope.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Hands are on the rope. Okay. My hands are still bound at my side, but I can… I can try and bend down with just my mouth.

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

All right.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I’m trying to bend. I’m bending at the neck.

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

Okay.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

It’s not enough. I can’t reach though because my neck doesn’t bend all the way down. And there’s rope. So if you undo some rope, then I can…

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

All right, I’m going to grab you by the ankles, turn you upside down and just shake you violently. Will that do it?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Uh, okay? Maybe. I don’t know—ack ack ack ack!

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

Ahhh! There we go.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Whew!

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

All right. Now you stay there.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

All right.

CARTER (AS THE FLOOR MOPPER)

I’m going to put this inside my gob and then I’ll untie you.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Okay—

Awww.

SEAN

And the centurion/floor mopper turns to stone.

The ship creaks.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Okay…

Anyone else? I’m on the ground and the centurion floor mopper assistant director of things is…

Aww, this is the worst vacation ever.

THE BADLANDS

SEAN

Darcy and Blat, you are jolted from your rest back deck where you are sitting and watching the trails behind you of the clouds as you are sailing through the desert as the ship lands. And it is rough. It sends you guys bouncing. It is just going right into the sand. Sand is spraying on both sides of the ship and people are still running around, very animated and in and around the eight figures that are all stone around Eggerton, who is still tied to the mast.

And the ship comes to a stop and you hear Captain Val shouting from the wheelhouse.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

There they are! Finally, we need to get some answers.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

I know we should do! A good old fashioned mutiny.

(lowers his voice)

Let’s just mention to some of the gnomes and dwarves around here that we’ve landed in the Badlands.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

But we’ve landed in the Badlands. We’re already here. What’s that going to do? We don’t know how to steer this thing.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Well, I don’t know if these people actually know that we’re in the Badlands. Some of them didn’t seem to know. Here, let’s stop somebody.

Uh… You! Tying something!

SEAN (AS ANOTHER CREW MEMBER)

Yes?

CARTER (AS BLAT)

I heard we’re currently landed… in the Badlands!

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

Yeah, you can sort of see that if you just look, any direction. It’s just desert as far as you can see.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Yeah, they’re right. I mean…

CARTER (AS BLAT)

All right, fine. Obviously the entire desert is counted as “Badlands”.

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

Well, no. Only the parts of the desert where, you know, nobody can survive.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

So then why would we come here?

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

The captain says we’re only going to be here for a few minutes. They have to pick something up and we’re refuelling.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Okay…

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Do you often refuel in the Badlands?

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

Well, I’m just a deckhand. Heh. What do I know? Gotta go!

CARTER (AS BLAT)

It’s funny how everybody has information until you ask them a pointed question. Then they’re just a deckhand!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Excuse me, deckhand. I’ll trade you one of these special cakes if you untie me!

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

I’m a little afraid to, seeing as you’re surrounded by most of my friends and they’re all turned to stone.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Oh, they’re just playing a game. It’s okay.

SEAN (AS CREW MEMBER)

I gotta go!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Aw.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Eggerton, what have you done? Why is everyone here stone?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

They ate my fairy cakes.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Oh my Lord, look at this one.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Yeah, he was dancing because he was so excited.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Not the one who is dancing. This one—this is not a dwarf or a gnome.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

No, that’s a floor mopper.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

A floor mopper…? This is the jailer from—this is a demon!

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Well, he got promoted. It’s okay.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

How—how is there a demon on board this thing?!

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

I was going to ask the same thing, but I think you are a demon, are you not, Blat?

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Yes, captain. I am indeed a demon. I thought I was the only one on this voyage. Um. Why are we in the Badlands?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Well, I said I had to stop and do an errand and refuel.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

In an area that everyone seems to be terrified to be in.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Yeah. Well, the errand sort of involves delivering the three of you here.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Ha ha ha. Annnnd there it is.

So… we’re not rescued; we’ve actually been captured. As I said—

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

I beg to differ here. I beg to differ. You are completely rescued. You’re free to go.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

To the captors that you’re delivering us to?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

No, it’s just the Badlands. You can go wherever you want in the Badlands. That was what I was, ahem, paid to do.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

We’ve heard nobody comes to the Badlands.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

It’s got a bad rep, you know, but they sort of like that. It keeps, you know, the keeps the riffraff out.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Who would even know we’re here?! You just rescued us from the only group of people that knew we were here!

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

I do have something to give you. It’s a… I’m told it’s a trifold bru-chure.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

A trifold bru-chure?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Burchure? Something like that? Bershurker?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

I’ve heard of brochuregers! It’s this kind of sweetener that’s really toxic.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

No, see, it’s this—

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

They call it a brochure.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

It’s paper and it folds in three and it’s got pictures. Here you go.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

It’s a brochure, buddy. Not everything’s about food.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

No, but… oh.

SEAN

It reads: “The Badlands Trailer Park. Home of the Winnebaygios.”

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

There’s sort of a map here on this side.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

I don’t know who the Winnebaygios are. We’ve never heard of the Winnebaygios.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Well, I’ve sort of done my thing. You’re free. I rescued you. You know, it’s all good.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Someone must have told you to do this. Where did you get your orders from?

SEAN

They look really nervous.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Look, I get it. I get it. You know, it’s a lot, right? You’re just being dumped here in the Badlands. You know? I gotta do what I gotta do.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Well, what if we took over this ship? What if you couldn’t do what you… had to do?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

…Is that a threat? I know I’m just a little gnome.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

No… it’s not really a threat. I just want to know why we’re here.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Look, he’s a really nice guy. All right?

CARTER (AS BLAT)

The head Winnebaygio?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Yeah.

You know, we don’t talk about them. But he’s a really nice guy when it comes down to it. I owe him a lot. And I called in his chits, and so…

Just, you know… You’re gonna have a hero’s welcome here.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Come on, Eggsy. Let’s untie you.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Thank you.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Well, we have to get Rachel.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Well, actually, I’ve talked to Rachel, and I’m gonna swing her home.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Oh, how decent of you. Thank you.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Based on what I’m making off this deal, I figure the least I can do is—ahem, you know, the decent thing.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Who’s paying you so well?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Nobody’s paying me. It’s, you know, I’m just doing a favour.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

You said you were making a lot.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Yeah, I gotta—okay. How long are my crew gonna be stone?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Well, it depends really on what else they’ve had to eat today, and if they’ve got, like, fairy cakes in them already. Those who have eaten a lot of fairy cakes, not long. But those who are maybe new to it, you’re gonna have to talk them through what’s happening. Sit them down, give them a drink, tell them nice colourful stories, and they’ll start to feel better.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

All right, someone drag these things down below decks.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

You don’t mind if we just use your restroom before we disembark, do you?

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

No, of course not. Just do it right over the side.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

(whispers)

Eggsy.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

(whispers)

Yeah?

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Get the emerald.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Okay.

MIKE

And I, carefully, by taking long, tall steps on my tiptoes, walk down into the lower decks again.

SEAN

Okay, so the, it’s in the captain’s quarters on the main deck.

MIKE

So I turn around after I walk down and walk back up the stairs and head to the main captain’s deck area.

SEAN

So everyone’s watching as you walk towards it, and the ten guards, and it’s all chained up.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Hey guys, you wanna try a fairy cake?

SEAN (AS GUARD)

No.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Oh. Um, but I left my… friend’s… toys in—

SEAN (AS GUARD)

We’ve been told no one can come in here, most importantly, you.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Exactly. And that’s why you gotta do what I wouldn’t do, and that’s go inside. So if you all go inside, then I definitely can’t get inside, can I?

SEAN (AS GUARD)

You know, this might work maybe, but not when the captain’s standing right there behind you watching.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

The captain’s cool with it. I talked to the captain—

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

I am? I’m cool with it, huh?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Yeah.

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

Yeah, you just gonna go right on in?

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Yeah!

SEAN (AS CAPTAIN VAL)

No, I don’t think you are.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

Okay, but they’re gonna let me in.

Right, guys? Right? Remember all of those good times we had?

SOON…

SEAN

The airship is pulling away, as you all are standing there, Eggerton with his feet kicking in the air, his head in the sand, and the ship is slowly turning, and you see Captain Val saluting from the deck.

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Huh.

CARTER (AS BLAT)

Well, it was worth a shot.

MIKE (AS EGGERTON)

(muffled mumbling)

CARTER (AS BLAT)

I know, buddy. I know.

SEAN

And behind the three adventurers, as the ship disappears into the dim light, is a hand-painted sign that reads, “The Badlands Trailer Park, home of the Winnebaygios.”

And underneath that, it reads, “All hail the Zombie King Stan, future Supreme Ruler of the Known Multiverses.”

MARISA (AS DARCY)

Oh boy.

CREDITS

Theme music plays.

ANNOUNCER

The End of Time and Other Bothers, with your Game Master Sean Howard and players Marisa King, Carter Siddall, and Michael Howie.

Transcription by Michael Howie and Marisa King. Music and sound design by Eli Hamada McIlveen. Story consultant: Laura Packer. Game consultant: Stephen Smith. Supporting producers: Kona, Lillianne Johnston, and Kim Bellinger.

If you enjoy the show, check out our Patreon. Supporters get early access to episodes, weekly bonus content, and an invite to our wonderful fan community on Discord. Look for the Patreon link at otherbothers.com.

OUTTAKE: SKYBARREL

SEAN

I need a name for the airship.

MARISA

Ooh, let’s come up with a good one.

MIKE

The Ulyssus.

MARISA

Let’s not do—

MIKE

Fair. Good idea.

MARISA

Did you say “bear”?

MIKE

I said “fair”.

CARTER

Skybarrel.

MARISA

(laughs)

Skybarrel.

SEAN

I’m liking Skybarrel.

MIKE

A Boeing? A Boe-ing.

MARISA

Or a Boing?

MIKE

No, a Boe-ing.

MARISA

I know, but—or a Boing, which is like a Boeing.

MIKE

Oh yeah.

MARISA

Because you’re trying to use names from our society. Let’s try and make something up.

MIKE

Let’s try and make something up? All right, a Ka-frfll.

MARISA

(laughs)

MIKE

How about a Flnnnmmnh?

Laughter.

CARTER

That’s why I said “Skybarrel”.