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The Obligatory Montage

The Bingo Hall Paddock

Paste-pot calliaphone hops back over the fence from the jungle, into the paddock. She is carrying a shovel which bears a suspicious resemblance to Jon Bishop's pride-and-joy. She is also covered in masonry-dust.

Paste-pot calliaphone climbs into the back of her cart, with shovel, and settles down for a nap.

Accomplice Teh Dave sits on the fence to have a smoke, watching the shapes drift off into the sky. Oooh, that one's a butterfly!

Paste-pot calliaphone 's nose twitches. she is dreaming about cigarettes in the open air, candyfloss and carousels, and loud loud music.

Accomplice Teh Dave chuckles to himself at Calli, and tosses the finished end of the cig towards a basket. He replaces the cig with a length of straw, and chews quietly, lost in thought.

Paste-pot calliaphone opens an eye. "mrmmm?" she says. possibly not quite awake. or entirely clear where she is.

Accomplice Teh Dave grins over at Calli. "Morning, Sunshine." He nabs two cigs out of his pocket, lights both, and holds one out to calli.

Paste-pot calliaphone sniffs, and opens the other eye."ciggie? f'me?" and she takes it without further question. a few lungfulls later and she's sitting up, taking notice. "h'llo Dave!"

Accomplice Teh Dave grins. "Hullo calli. How'd the Shovel Testing go?"

Paste-pot calliaphone looks blank. then . . . a mixture. pride and shame and alarm and guilt and lots and lots of hopefulness. "you see'd it! you was there! did i . . ." pause, "did i do ok?"

Accomplice Teh Dave laughs. "Until you let it go and smashed the window at Suzie's, yep." He grins. "Just a matter of holding on proper. Or at least aiming where you throw."

Paste-pot calliaphone looks abashed. but not entirely. a grin sneaks through. "it made a good CRASH though didn't it." then her face falls."but . . .i ran away an' left Bishop. thassa bad-soldier thing."

Accomplice Teh Dave ponders a moment, puffing thoughtfully on his cig. He puffs out a few penguins and giraffes, which race off into the sky. "Well, depends. Did you just start running? Or was that the plan?"

Paste-pot calliaphone blinks at the animals, and tries to make a smoke-worm. she very nearly succeeds. "er, plan?" she frowns. "depends what you're calling a plan. Bishop said should we run? an' so i sorta did."

Paste-pot calliaphone adds, as if this will redeem matters, "i yelled RUUUUN as well. so that's sorta like a plan isn't it."

Accomplice Teh Dave nods. "Sounds like a plan to me, in which case you were Properly Executing The Plan." He grins. "Besides, Bish is great at running, 'snot like you really left him there."

Paste-pot calliaphone beams. "Bishop's Real Fast! He's like the running away HERO." she puffs her chest up a bit. "an' now i got a shovel, jus' like him!"

Accomplice Teh Dave laughs. "Yeah, I'll give him that." He peers at the shovel. "A fine tool, that. Is that his old one or the one Ari found by his statue?"

Paste-pot calliaphone also looks at the shovel. "well . . . i'm not much'f an expert on shovels. but this'n looks used."

Accomplice Teh Dave nodnods. "Guess it doesn't necessarily matter either way, huh?" He shrugs. "Feeling better, then?"

Paste-pot calliaphone says, "better? ohhh, than th'other day?" she grins. "you betcha!" she flips up into a handstand on the edge of her cart, to prove it. Egbert tumbles from her pocket. "oops"

Paste-pot calliaphone balances, kicking her legs a little (just for kicks), as yet more pocket-contents empty themselves into the cart. she scowls at Dave, so that he'll see it as a grin on her upside down face.

Accomplice Teh Dave leans over to catch Egbert as he falls, and studies him carefully before setting him on calli's cart. "Gotta keep a better eye on your stuff there . . .don't want to be losing things about."

Accomplice Teh Dave laughs at calli as he leans over to her cart. He grabs her bucket and holds it under her to catch the falling debris.

Paste-pot calliaphone tries to see what Dave is doing. She pirouettes, cranes her neck, and overbalances herself. Tumbling into the grass, she rolls back onto her feet with only the slightest of staggers.

Accomplice Teh Dave laughs and puts the bucket back, having managed to rescue a small bit of her pocketstuff as it fell. "Just catching things." He hops off the fence and picks up Egbert, peering at him curiously.

Paste-pot calliaphone says, "see? springy!" and does a couple of cartwheels to underline the point.

Accomplice Teh Dave grins up at calli as he sets Egbert back on the cart. "Looks like. So you want to try learning some stuff today?"

Paste-pot calliaphone trots back over to the cart and peeps into the bucket to see what Dave caught. she's hoping for frogs, but mostly finds bottlecaps, chewing gum, pebbles and post-it notes.

Paste-pot calliaphone looks round, shoving the post-it note that says cookys and the one that says seckshul ornimentashun: alive back into her pockets. "like training y'mean?" she nods and nods.

Accomplice Teh Dave grins. "Sure, why not." He bounces a couple times to test the ground, and nods. "Hell, right here ain't too bad for it."

Paste-pot calliaphone bounces too, because Dave did. and also because she likes to. overexcited now, she does a standing tucked front-flip, and then another one backwards. then she settles, and puts on a Serious Face.

Paste-pot calliaphone takes off Cordy. "you're not ready for this Level of Training yet" she tells him, still with the Serious Face. the accordion does not deign to reply.

Accomplice Teh Dave grins. "Right. Well . . .er . . ." He hasn't quite worked out how to start here. He settles for a quick explanation. "I'm not sure how it'll work for you, but this is how I fight out in the Jungle:"

Accomplice Teh Dave smiles at Cordy, then continues. "Basically, the monsters out there, if they're real things and not intangibles, go for a few key parts . . ."

Paste-pot calliaphone nods, looking all eager and ready to play-learn- ready to learn.

Accomplice Teh Dave taps calli's head, her chest, and her stomach. "Mostly, they go for a quick kill, so they aim for parts that'll do a world of hurt. First step is to make sure they don't hit you."

Paste-pot calliaphone looks up, then down, following Dave's hand. she blinks. a world of hurt - yeah, she knows about that. she listens with renewed attention.

Accomplice Teh Dave considers. "Or at least, make sure that if they do hit you, it's not somewhere important. When you're out fighting, it's generally inevitable that you will get hit."

Accomplice Teh Dave smiles. "A major part of fighting is knowing that you will get hit, and knowing how to take it." He takes a step back, arms wide. "For instance, take a swing at me."

Paste-pot calliaphone blinks. "whut? but . . . like, hit you?"

Accomplice Teh Dave nods. "Yep."

Paste-pot calliaphone 's jaw drops. "well . . . okay, if you're sure." she takes a step towards Dave and aims a closed fist - not terribly powerfully - at his midriff. But she stops short of hitting him.

Paste-pot calliaphone drops her hand, "i don'wannahurtyou!"

Accomplice Teh Dave looks down, and raises an eyebrow. "I'm trying to demonstrate something here . . ." He pokes her shoulder. "Let's do that again, shall we?"

Accomplice Teh Dave smiles. "I'll be just fine, I promise."

Paste-pot calliaphone gulps. looks at her shoulder where Dave just poked it. and nods. she flexes her fist a couple of times, as if getting used to the idea, and then, without preamble, swings it wildly towards Dave.

Accomplice Teh Dave judges the aim, and shifts to his right, to take the blow to his stomach and move with it, softening it. He grins at calli. "Much better. Need to work on your aim a bit though."

Paste-pot calliaphone shakes out her fist a bit, ouching. but at Dave's words she grins back, albeit uncertainly.

Accomplice Teh Dave takes a step back. "But, the key thing here is, if you're going to get hit, make sure that when you get hit, it's not as damaging. You move with the blow. It's like a cart-crash."

Paste-pot calliaphone says, "huhh." she knows about cart-crashes. a lot! "y'mean, like, having shock-absorbers so's it don't just fall to bits?"

Accomplice Teh Dave nods. "Something like that . . .if you hit something that stays there, it's going to hurt more. If you hit something that gives, there's less force in the impact."

Paste-pot calliaphone has, in her cart, hit both types of obstacle. she winces, remembering.

Accomplice Teh Dave sees the wince and nods. "So, if you have to take a hit, you make sure that you move with it, soften the blow." He grins. "or redirect it. Have you ever seen a swordfight?"

Paste-pot calliaphone thinks. "i seen pretend 'uns. sometimes there were shows, at the fairs. they was real blades, but they wasn't aimin' for the kill. just to look like it, if y'know what i mean."

Accomplice Teh Dave nodnods. "Yep. So when one swordfighter blocks and changes where the others' sword is going, you can do that with your arms, too. Same principle."

Paste-pot calliaphone absorbs this, and does a few trial movements, as if testing out the theory against an imaginary opponent. in fact, she appears to be swinging an imaginary shovel.

Accomplice Teh Dave grins. "Well, looks like we're all ready to start." Teh scoots into the paddock area with a boombox, an extension cord trailing behind it back to the Bingo Hall proper.

Accomplice Teh Dave 's hat reaches around the boombox and presses play. A hard rock riff plays out from it, with a growly man singing about something or other. The training Begins. MONTAGE STYLE!

Accomplice Teh Dave shows calli his stance, directing her on proper punch technique, namely keeping your eyes open to make sure it hits.

Paste-pot calliaphone imitates the stance, tripping over her feet until she gets the hang of it. and punches. wildly at first.

Accomplice Teh Dave 's hat watches with a detached amusement, scuttling about every now and then to chase after things that fall out of one or the others' pockets. It watches the sun trace across the sky slowly.

Paste-pot calliaphone 's eyes are spending less time squinched shut, and more time narrowed, focused on her target. her punches gradually get stronger and less random.

. . . time passes . . .

Scenes from the past few hours play back: Dave showing Calli some throws and holds, the two taking a smoke and tea break, the two chasing butterflies with nets. The music cuts out.

Accomplice Teh Dave 's hat gives the two of them a blank, incredulous stare. Dave's ears droop and he grins goofily. "Erm . . .right . . .back to training then . . ." He sets his net against a post as the music kicks back on.

Paste-pot calliaphone resists the urge to dance. no. no she doesn't. she dances, callia-style, throwing a mock-punch to Teh (jus' pretend), and tripping headlong over the butterfly nets.

Accomplice Teh Dave 's hat dodges the punch and both he and dave watch calli fall. They wince as she lands, then Dave helps her up. "Ready?"

Paste-pot calliaphone nods, grinning like an idiot. she rubs her elbow and dusts herself down. she's all fighty today, s'gonna take more than a tumble to keep her down!

Accomplice Teh Dave nods, and the montage resumes, with Dave and calli sparring, mostly throwing each other around. That is, mostly Dave throwing calli around. She manages to get a few good hits in, though.

Paste-pot calliaphone grunts as she hits the turf again. But she's rolling with it now, getting back on her feet more swiftly. And watching every move that Dave makes.

Accomplice Teh Dave laughs as they continue, occasionally making a comment on calli's stance, or a particularly well-timed throw, or . . .hey look at those clouds . . .why is he looking at the clouds?

Paste-pot calliaphone stops, and peeeeers at Dave in some confusion. "why're you . . ." light dawns. "huhh? did i jus'?" yup, that's right Callia. you did.

Paste-pot calliaphone boggles. then utters a small whoop and does a backhandspring to celebrate.

Accomplice Teh Dave blinks, then glances up at calli. He bursts into laughter, and hauls himself to his feet slowly. The music fades out as Dave stretches. "Well you're definitely improving."

Paste-pot calliaphone beams and bounces from foot to foot. "am i am i reeeeelly am i like dangerous an' dastardly an' a force to be reckn'd with?"

Paste-pot calliaphone throws mock punches at her cart the sky a passing bumblebee and a clump of long grass by the fence. this last proves more than her equal. or possibly, her legs just give out with exhaustion.

Paste-pot calliaphone drops into a heap.

Accomplice Teh Dave laughs. "For many reasons yes to the first and third. You still have a ways to go but I think your Dojo masters'll find you a lot more formidable next time they see you." He plops next to her.

Paste-pot calliaphone manages to haul herself up so she's leaning on the fencepost. Not that she needs it or anything. Just, she might topple over again without it. She says weakly, "thankya Dave. f'rallthis. stuff."

Accomplice Teh Dave grins and passes calli a smoke and a carton of chocomilk. The smoke is lit, the carton isn't. "No problem. Always willing to lend a hand." He grins. He seems rather out-of-it himself.

Paste-pot calliaphone takes the refreshments gratefully. she has to use both hands to lift the carton, suddenly. "don'think i'll be rushing to the Dojo like, today or anything" she says, slrping and puffing by turns.

Accomplice Teh Dave nodnods. "Gotta practice. And get some sleep. No use going over there all . . ." YAAAAAAAAAAWN "Tired out." His eyes close slightly.

Paste-pot calliaphone looks at Dave, and frowns. Then, with considerable effort, she makes it to her feet. Tottering to her cart, she grabs a blanket, and tugtugs it out and back towards Dave. She drops it over him.

Accomplice Teh Dave feels the blanket and laughs as he snuggles into it. "Thanks calli." He leans his head against the post and immediately begins snoring.

Paste-pot calliaphone smiles happily, well satisfied with her efforts. Then she turns to tackle the Journey Back to the Cart. She almost makes it.

Paste-pot calliaphone 's knees begin their Industrial Action as she's trying to scramble aboard. She struggles for a moment, and then her arms start to see things from her knees' point of view.

Paste-pot calliaphone does not prolong the negotiation. She settles promptly. For a nice spot in the grass beside the cart - right next to Cordy, in fact. With a whispered "nite" to the accordion, she falls asleep

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