Kuan-Yin oversteps the mark.
Kuan-Yin stamped his paws with rage.
“Shuang’s just a cub!” He yelled, “She can’t get into a relationship at her age!”
“These cubs grow up faster than we give them credit for,” Theo mewed.
“No they dam well don’t!” Kuan-Yin replied, “Shuang’s just a silly cub, with cubbish ideas and no sense of danger!”
“I don’t think Shen would hurt her,” Nick said.
“You can shut up Mister Fat paws!” Kuan-Yin yelled, trying to use Nick’s pet name as an insult, which it wasn’t, as nearly everyone knew him as mister Fat paws anyway.
“Stop stamping your paws like that, you’ll only make them sore,” Nick mewed. Kuan-Yin stamped his paws some more, as angry with nick as he was with his own cub.
“Of course, your paws wouldn’t get sore, they’re so dam fat!” Kuan-Yin yelled, banging his left forepaw down hard on the carpet. Nick looked away, bored with the panda’s ranting. Kuan-Yin ran at Nick, trying to attack him! Theo saved the lynx, leaping on top of Kuan-Yin and pinning him to the floor!
“Now you stop this madness!” Theo snarled, “It’s stupid! Shuang’s no longer a cub, and you’d better get used to the idea too!” Kuan-Yin struggled beneath Theo’s body, beating at him with his forepaws. Theo just lay there, letting the enraged panda take his frustrations out on him.
“Now,” Theo said when Kuan-Yin had exhausted himself, “can I take out my frustrations on you in a similar way to the way you have on me?” Kuan-Yin screamed with fear!
“No, no no Theodore, don’t!”
“Oh, Theodore now is it,” the lion said, smiling, “I’m in big trouble now then. Though, not as much trouble as you’ll be in when I use my paws on you Panda!” Kuan-Yin wriggled and kicked, trying to get his head out of the line of fire, but Theo’s paw still found its mark, smashing down on his nose! Even though Theo only used his toes to swipe at the panda’s nose, rather than cuffing him with his whole paw, Kuan-Yin’s nose felt as if it had been disconnected from the rest of him. Pain shot through his body, and Kuan-Yin screamed, covering his nose with his free forepaw.
“You horrible animal!” Kuan-Yin yelled. Theo smiled grimly at him. Theo raised his paw for a second swipe.
“Don’t do it!” Kuan-Yin yelled. Theo levered himself off the large panda in disgust.
“You bore me senseless,” Theo said yawning theatrically. Kuan-Yin spat at the lion.
“How dare you spit at my brother!” Leo snarled.
“Why don’t you just shut up!” Kuan-Yin jeered. In a flash Leo was on top of Kuan-Yin and clamping his paw over the panda’s mouth.
“Now you will be the one who will shut up!” Leo growled. Kuan-Yin tried to bite Leo’s paw, getting a hard smack between the ears for his trouble. Kuan-Yin howled with fear and pain.
“You thought I’d let you get away with spitting at my brother?” Leo snapped, “Well I won’t!” He walloped Kuan-Yin across his nose, the panda shrieking with pain.
“Leave it Leo,” Theo mewed, “let him go.” Leo levered himself off Kuan-Yin and padded away.
Meanwhile, in another room, Ricky and Jinny played together, chasing each other, each trying to catch the other’s tail and tickle the soles of their hind paws. Ricky managed to grab Jinny’s tail, then, leaping at her left hind paw as it left the floor, he grabbed it in his free forepaw, the two cubs rolling on the carpet, and Jinny laughing as her brother tickled the sole of her paw.
“You win, you win!” Jinny laughed, Ricky smiled at his sister, stroking her paw now rather than tickling it.
“I love that game,” Jinny said. Ricky let go of his sister’s tail and left hind paw, embracing her tightly in both his forepaws. Ever since the water from a nearby river flooded their cave, Ricky and Jinny had been alone, their parents killed by the water. The two mongoose cubs found themselves carried down the river and dumped on a bank beside a wood. From there, Ricky led Jinny to the garden, where snowy saw them on her camera and directed fleur towards them, and from there Fleur helped the two cubs. Now Ricky and Jinny were safe, well fed and able to think about play.
Fleur and Pepper watched the two mongooses, both laughing merrily at their antics.
“I think we have an audience,” Ricky said to Jinny, who looked up, saw the two cross bred cats, and releasing herself from Ricky’s embrace, ran to them, Ricky close behind.
“Hi!” Jinny exclaimed, fleur rolling onto her side and catching Jinny between her huge warm paws. Ricky too had been caught in a similar manner by Pepper, and each cat hugged the mongoose cub cradled in their paws. Ricky and Jinny snuggled into the warm thick fur of the two cats, enjoying the warmth and security it offered.
Shen and Shuang also lay curled together, each enjoying the warmth of the other’s fur. Shuang smiled as she felt Shen’s paws working all over her body from her nose to the tips of her toes.
“I love this,” Shuang said. Shen smiled at her.
“So do I,” he replied, gently stroking the pads and toes of her left forepaw. Shuang curled her toes round Shen’s, the male panda smiling at her with intense pleasure.
Fleur and Pepper released the two mongooses and watched them as they padded away. Fleur looked at her cub.
“How about a dip in the pool?” She mewed. Pepper took her mum’s paw.
“I would like that very much,” Pepper mewed. The two cats padded towards the pool. On the way they met Allie, Arki and Arki’s cub bramble, who was now three months old. Seeing fleur and Pepper, Bramble shambled over to them and threw her fat paws round Pepper, who hugged the cub tightly.
“Ah bramble, how good to see you,” pepper mewed. Bramble snuggled up to her, burying her fat paws in pepper’s fur.
“Are you coming to the pool?” Bramble asked pepper.
“We’ll all go to the pool,” Arki said, Allie nodding. Bramble and Pepper danced on their toes with delight, fleur and the two adult bears laughing merrily at the antics of their cubs.
“Last one to reach the pool gets their paws tickled!” Allie yelled, “and that includes adults too!” fleur and Arki grinned at each other.
“I’m the only one with the pass to open the door,” fleur mewed.
“Um, no you’re not,” Arki said, as the door to the pool opened. Snowy had seen them on the camera and opened the door as fleur spoke.
“don’t run,” fleur advised, it’s unsafe to run.”
“then we’ll all get our paws tickled,” bramble said.
“Oh I’m really upset about that,” pepper whimpered theatrically. Bramble grinned at her.
“let’s all just get into the water and then we can decide who is going to have their paws tickled first,” Arki said. The bears and cats splashed into the water.
Meanwhile, Kuan-Yin lay knocked out cold on the carpet of the living room with Leo snarling and growling nearby.
“I want to kill that panda!” Leo yelled.
“I’m not stopping you,” Theo mewed. Leo looked down at Kuan-Yin.
“You have stepped over the mark once too often!” Leo yelled. Kuan-Yin woke slowly at the sound of the lion’s voice, looked at him, and then swore at him!
“Now you’re for it!” Leo screamed, leaping on top of the Panda, crushing the life from him!
“You, you’ve killed him!” Ellie yelled, bursting into tears.
“Kuan-Yin was heading for such a fait,” Theo mewed, “I saw it but could do nothing about it.” Leo knew what his brother meant.
“He was a silly panda,” Yi Jie said, “and I’m sorry for him.”
“You seem remarkably cool about the whole thing,” Leo said, “I’ve just killed your mate, and you’re talking like this?”
“I told him!” Yi Jie replied, “I told Kuan-Yin that if he continued to insult community members, he’d get what was coming to him, and now he has. He would talk to me frequently about how he didn’t like the way cubs seemed to go off at an early age to be with their sweethearts. Now Kuan-Yin’s gone, maybe there will be room now for a panda who appreciates what the community is.” Leo saw that Yi Jie’s concern was only for her cub.
Kuan-Yin’s body was buried quickly, as were all animals that died. Shuang watched as Salty presided over the burial.
“He tried to stop me and Shen from seeing each other,” she said, “but did he have to die?”
“He got on the wrong side of a lion,” Yi Jie said. Yi Jie knew Kuan-Yin would have been given ample warning, and therefore he had only himself to blame. Nature was harsh, and she knew it only too well. Shuang looked at her mother.
“Promise me you won’t get into a fight with the lions here mum,” she said. Yi Jie smiled and hugged her cub tightly.
“I won’t,” she said, “I promise.”
Meanwhile, fleur, Pepper and the bears played together. Everyone got their paws tickled, which led to a lot of splashing and merriment. This good time ended when snowy came down from the control room and told them what was going on in the house.
“Oh no!” Fleur mewed.
“It seems Kuan-Yin has overstepped the mark once too often,” snowy mewed. Shuang and Yi Jie entered the pool complex.
“Please,” Shuang pleaded, “take our minds off what has just gone on!” Fleur looked at her.
“You want your paws stroked and tickled too?” She asked.
“Anything within reason,” Yi jie replied.
“How about a hug first?” Pepper asked, throwing her paws round Shuang. Shuang snuggled up to the cross bred cat.
“It will be okay,” Pepper mewed.
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