Fanfic: Fraggle Rock: The Movie

TheRealFraggle

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Hey everyone, this is my plot for a possible Fraggle Rock movie. I know they were going to make one a long time ago and shelved it to make Back to the Rock instead, but I thought it would be interesting to explore what would have happened if they had made one. I created this story primarily to explain some of the things on the show that don't make sense, such as where the Gorgs live in relation to Outer Space. Since I haven't seen Back to the Rock yet, I decided to ignore it and set this one in the continuity of the original show instead.
First of all, I just want to explain a few things beforehand. I have a lot of exposition for this story, so I'll just explain it all here. Shortly before this story begins, a rockslide blocked off the T. Matthew Fraggle Room (the cave that contained portals to different locations in Outer Space). This is because it was essential to the story that the Fraggles' access to Outer Space be cut off. Also, I wasn't sure where to fit this into the story, so I'll just mention it here: In case you're wondering whether I've retconned the episode "The Gorg Who Would Be King", no. I feel that the Gorgs wouldn't have gone long without wanting to re-establish the "monarchy". So it was only a matter of time before they started calling themselves the Kings of the Universe again. Without further ado, here is the plot for my story (which I envision as the premise of a potential Fraggle Rock feature film, or at least a TV miniseries). I'll be posting it one chapter at a time, so hopefully it should be done in a few weeks.


CHAPTER ONE

1997
The car pulled up into the driveway. Jerry ripped the keys out of the ignition and crammed them into his pocket. Slowly, quietly, he stepped outside of the car. There, right in front of him, was his father's house.
Trembling slightly, Jerry took his keychain out of his pocket and opened the door of the house. There was no sound save for the noise of his shoes walking across the hardwood floor. For the first time, the house felt empty; dead and lifeless. The last time he'd been inside, it had been filled with the cheerful energy of his father, Jerome Crystal. But he was gone now, and all that remained was the house, and his father's eccentric possessions that were stored inside.
Jerry knew he should have seen it coming. Ever since he moved to the desert ten years previously, his father had appeared to be suffering from dementia. For hours he would talk excitedly about imaginary creatures that lived in his house. But despite his hallucinations, Jerome Crystal had seemed in other ways to still be the same man he was all his life. The eccentric, lovable, always enthusiastic man who would get an almost childlike joy of tinkering with objects and making strange inventions. Nevertheless, his mental health took a turn for the worse when his beloved dog, Sprocket, died, and his physical health soon grew worse as well. Jerome's friends, who'd hardly noticed his dementia, began to notice a change in him. In fact, it was Ned Shimmelfinney, Jerome's next-door neighbor and best friend, who discovered his lifeless body slumped over a table in his workshop, surrounded by his inventions.
Jerry had scarcely believed it when he got the call from Ned, and learned that his father was dead. The last time he'd seen him, Jerome had still seemed spry and energetic for a man over seventy. But that was over a year ago, and his health had gotten worse since then. Jerome Crystal Sr. passed away in the middle of the night, his hand clutching a framed photograph of himself and his dog. In his will, Jerome had left his son his house and all his possessions. Jerry, who didn't expect to receive anything, was very surprised, but he wasn't passing up the chance to get his own house to live in. So Jerry had quickly packed up his belongings and drove to the desert to move into the house.
The first thing to do was to organize the house, look through his father's belongings, and see if there was anything of value. Jerome had owned an impressive collection of old antiques, and his "inventions" still littered the house. Slowly, Jerry made the way into his father's workshop - the room where he had died. In his old house, Doc had owned a small, one-room guest house on his property which had served as his workshop. But his house in the desert was smaller, and his workshop was now just a bedroom, one of two in the house.
Jerry had only been in this workshop once, years before, but remembered that it had been furnished very similarly to the workshop in his old home. As soon as he entered the room, Jerry found that it looked almost the same as it did the last time he saw it. The floor was still littered with books, his inventions still stood on a shelf in the corner, and his dog's old food dish still held a special place on his desk. It was not hard to believe that Jerome Crystal - known as "Doc" to his friends - had inhabited the room just a few weeks before. In this room, Jerry could still feel his father's presence, and he was overcome with the urge to smile, not cry.
As Jerry bent down to pick up a book that was lying on the floor underneath the table, Jerry noticed something. There, in a corner of the wall, was a large, unsightly hole. The same hole that his father had claimed was the gateway to a world full of magical creatures. Not wanting to be reminded of his father's dementia, Jerry decided one thing: the hole would have to be boarded up.

It had been many weeks since Gobo Fraggle had visited his friend Doc, so he decided to go and see him again. Gobo's Uncle, Traveling Matt, decided to come too. Since the destruction of the T. Matthew Fraggle Room, Matt had been anxious to explore Outer Space once more, so he was considering leaving through Doc's house and venturing out into the desert. But Matt new little about the desert, and hoped that Doc could explain more about it before he went. Remembering how lonely he always felt when he was out exploring, Matt had decided that he was going to ask Gobo to come with him into Outer Space.
Matt walked briskly through the cavern leading to Doc's house, with Gobo following. In a few seconds, they would see the light illuminating the cavern, which meant they had arrived at the hole leading into the house. But this time, Matt saw nothing but darkness at the end of the tunnel.
"Gobo!" he called out, looking behind him. "Come here!"
Matt heard his nephew's footsteps hurrying along the stone floor of the cavern. Soon, Gobo appeared behind his uncle, panting.
"What's wrong, Uncle Matt?" asked Gobo.
"It's terrible!" Matt replied. "The hole at the end of the tunnel has disappeared!"
"What do you mean?" asked Gobo. "That's impossible!" Gobo elbowed his way past Matt and made his way to the hole. It was still there, but something was blocking it.
Gobo reached out and touched the hole. It was boarded up, blocked by a series of wooden planks. With horror, Gobo realized that the same thing that happened to the other hole leading to Doc's old workshop, after he moved out. Was Doc gone?
"The hole's been boarded up!" called Gobo nervously. "We can't enter Outer Space anymore".
 

TheRealFraggle

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CHAPTER TWO

Five years later

Gobo sat alone in his cave, his legs dangling off the edge of his bed. In his hand were a stack of postcards from his Uncle Traveling Matt. But they were not new ones. The postcards in Gobo's hands were over fifteen years old, from the first time Matt explored Outer Space. If only he could get another one. But how?
Gobo hadn't heard from his uncle in nearly two years. It had been five years since the hole in Doc's house was boarded up, cutting off Fraggle Rock's only access to Outer Space. Traveling Matt had been desperate to leave Fraggle Rock again. As he would always explain to Gobo, he felt that he belonged outside, exploring the world beyond Fraggle Rock and making bold new discoveries. So, after three years exploring every cavern in the rock again and again, Matt finally left the rock and went the only other place he could go: the Gorgs' garden.
Gobo never forgot the day that Traveling Matt left Fraggle Rock again. Gobo and his friends all gathered in the garden to watch him leave. Matt promised he would write back to Gobo regularly, and then disappeared into the distance. Today, more than ever, he was worried about Uncle Matt. After all, no Fraggle had ever been beyond the Gorgs' garden. Gobo couldn't imagine what horrors might lie in the world outside. Matt had seemed quite confident that he would find his way back to Outer Space, but Gobo wasn't so sure. He'd checked the garden for postcards almost every day since then, but never received even one.
Gobo tried not to worry himself. Perhaps Matt did find his way back to Outer Space; since both entrances leading to the rock were blocked, he wouldn't have been able to send Gobo postcards the way he used to, and might not have been able to make it back to the garden to send them there. But what if Matt had run into something dangerous outside the garden?
Gobo didn't want to think about it. He was starting to sound like his friend, Boober. Boober was the one who was always worrying about things like monsters and germs. As far as Gobo knew, his uncle was doing fine. Perhaps he'd turn up in the garden any day now, sharing stories of his adventures in the land of the Gorgs.
Gobo undid the elastic band that held together his stack of postcards. He picked up the first one and read it, for the hundredth time.
Dear nephew Gobo,
Recently, as I was exploring the inside of one of the Silly Creatures' homes, I made a shocking discovery. Inside the cave was a strange box with a very small Silly Creature trapped inside. I tried talking to him, but he didn't seem to hear me. Nevertheless, it appears as though the Silly Creatures like to sit in front of the box and listen to the Silly Creature talk. They didn’t talk back, but undoubtedly they understood what he was saying. Most shockingly of all, one of the Silly Creatures possesses a strange device which he uses to make the Silly Creature in the box disappear, and be replaced by a different one. I am unable to understand how this works, but it just goes to show, there are some things Fraggles were not meant to know.
Love,
your uncle,
Traveling Matt
Gobo sighed. If only he could know what his uncle was discovering now. Perhaps Matt had found things even more incredible than the box with the tiny Silly Creature inside it.
Or maybe...
Maybe he'd been thumped by Gorgs.

"I wouldn't worry about your uncle, Gobo," said Mokey, gently patting Gobo on the back. "He's a very strong and brave Fraggle. He knows how to fend for himself. He's probably off discovering amazing things right now..."
"Or maybe he was attacked by an enormous germ the size of a Gorg!" said Boober, quivering with fear. "There could be all sorts of terrible things out there. Tigers, and monsters, and poison cacklers..."
"Boober!" admonished Mokey. "Don't you say things like that. Just relax."
"Hey, Gobo," chipped in Red, "look on the bright side. At least we don't have to put up with any more of those postcards. They could put a Doozer to sleep!"
"Oh yeah?" said Gobo, raising his voice as he glared at Red. "Shows how much you care! What if Boober's right, and there are giant germs out there? How'd you like it if one of those found its way into Fraggle Rock? Would you be joking then?"
"Everybody, please!" shouted Wembley nervously. "Don't argue! I'm sure your Uncle Traveling Matt's fine. He just doesn't know where to send his postcards to, that's all."
"Yeah, I'm sure that's all," replied Gobo, forcing himself to sound cheerful. But he didn't really believe it.
 

TheRealFraggle

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CHAPTER THREE

"Mokey! Mokey!" Wembley called out, as he ran through the rock. "Where are you?"
"Oh, there are you!" said Mokey, as the two literally bumped into each other inside the Great Hall. "I was looking all over for you!"
"Yeah, me too! Isn't it time for us to go get the radishes from the Gorgs' garden?"
"Why, yes, Wembley, and you're doing a great job of it, too. In a few weeks you should be able to take over as the official radish-gatherer of Fraggle Rock! Isn't that nice?"
"Well, I'm amazed you think so. Let's go!"
Mokey handed Wembley a large basket, and the two left the Great Hall and walked together into the cave leading to the Gorgs' garden. Wembley hummed to himself as he walked, swinging his basket to and fro. Soon, the two arrived outside the hole leading into the garden.
Mokey stuck her head out and looked around. Thankfully, there was not a Gorg inside. She popped back into the tunnel and turned to face Wembley.
"The coast is clear. Now remember," she explained. "If you see a Gorg, just move quickly and don't make any noise. You're safe as long as the Gorg doesn't see you. You got that?"
"Gee, sure, Mokey"
"Great," said Mokey, and she and Wembley sneaked into the garden.

It was a warm and sunny day. The perfect day for a fellow to lie around under the sun and do nothing. So Pa Gorg, the king of the universe, entered his garden, intending to do just that.
A few feet away, Pa's son Junior Gorg, the heir to the throne, was watering the vegetables. Pa approaches his son, smiling.
"And how's the future king of the universe today, my boy?" asked Pa, slapping Junior on the back. Junior stumbled and fell over, spilling water on himself.
"Get up, boy!" barked Pa. "There's no time for fooling around today!"
"What is it, Pa?" asked Junior, brushing himself off.
"I want you to catch me some Fraggles!"
"But Pa," said Junior, incredulous. "You hate Fwaggles!"
"Exactly the point, boy! Those Fraggles have become a menace. Stealing radishes left and right, making a mess in the garden... I want them gone, you hear me? Get out your old Fraggle traps from the shed and make sure you catch as many as you can!"
"Yes, Pa," grumbled Junior, giving a mocking salute. Junior stumped off to the tool shed. Seconds later, however, he heard his father calling him again.
"What is it this time, oh king of the universe?"
"On second thought, I'll take care of the Fraggles myself. You throw out that old pile of trash over there," he said, pointing behind his shoulder. It's gotten way too big. Just dump it somewhere far away.
"I'm on it, Pa, your highness," muttered Junior, as he walked over to the area where the increasingly-large trash heap lay.

"That's probably enough radishes for now," said Mokey, as she watched Wembley pulling radish after radish out of the ground and loading them into his basket. "We can go home now."
"Gee, that's great!" said Wembley. "You know, I was getting tired of this anyway. Not that it's boring or anything," he added after a pause.
Their baskets full of radishes, Wembley and Mokey turned around and headed back to Fraggle Rock. At that very instant, Junior Gorg walked past them, angrily muttering to himself. He was pushing a wheelbarrow; with horror, the Fraggles realized that inside was none other than their oracle, Marjory the all-knowing Trash Heap!
"That's the Trash Heap, Mokey!" screamed Wembley. Mokey quickly silenced Wembley. However, at that moment the Trash Heap called out to them.
"Mokey! Wembley! Beware!" she called. "Matthew Fraggle is in danger!"
Just then, Junior Gorg walked away. He was humming to himself, and had not heard the Trash Heap speak. Marjory was gone.
"Did you hear that?" said Mokey. "Matthew Fraggle - Gobo's Uncle Matt!"
"We gotta tell Gobo and the others!" said Wembley.
The two began running back to Fraggle Rock. In the distance, Pa Gorg noticed them running, and quickly began to chase after them. He lunged down and tried to grab the two Fraggles, but they had made it back to the rock. Pa tripped and fell to the ground.
Picking himself up, Pa grumbled. "Drat and deuteronomy!" he murmured to himself. "I'm not as good at catching Fraggles as Junior is. But soon," he said with a sigh, "I'll set traps and I can catch all the Fraggles in the universe!"
 

TheRealFraggle

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CHAPTER FOUR

"And - and then she said, 'Matthew Fraggle is in danger!' And the Gorg took her away!"
Gobo couldn't believe it. Two minutes ago, Wembley and Mokey had come running into his cave, looking shocked and disheveled. At first, Gobo thought perhaps they'd been chased by Gorgs. But now Wembley was telling him that not only was their oracle, the all-knowing Trash Heap, gone, but Uncle Traveling Matt was in danger, just as he'd feared. It was almost too much to comprehend.
"Isn't there anything we can do?" Gobo asked, stammering. "Maybe we can go back in the garden and see where they took the Trash Heap. I'm sure she can tell us what to do next."
"Oh, Gobo," said Mokey, looking saddened. "I don't think we'll be able to find Madame Trash Heap. The Gorg was taking her away in a wheelbarrow. He might have dumped her in the river by now."
"Well, we can't just sit around here!" Gobo snapped. "We need to do something! The Fraggles need Madame Trash Heap. Without her, where is our wisdom going to come from?"
"Gobo, we have wisdom inside all of us,"
"Oh yeah? Well, she's the only one who knows where my Uncle Matt is. And he needs our help. So what are we gonna do?"
"Gobo, Gobo," said Wembley. "We'll think of something. Maybe we can go back to the garden and look for the Trash Heap."
"No, I'm sure Mokey's right. She's probably at the bottom of the River Gorg by now. It's my Uncle Matt we need to look for."
"Well, why don't we that?" asked Wembley. "He needs your help, like you said. We could go on an expedition to find him. You always wanted to be an explorer, Gobo."
"I suppose it's the only thing to do. I'll start packing my things. I can leave in a few days. Does anybody want to come with me?"
"I'll come with you, Gobo," said Wembley.
Gobo hugged his friend. "I knew you'd say that, Wembley. You're the best friend a Fraggle could ask for. How about you, Mokey? Will you come?"
"Well, sure," Mokey said, patting Gobo's back. "I have nothing better to do. Anything to help a friend."
Gobo smiled. "That's perfect. I need all the Fraggles I can get for this mission. I'll go find Red and Boober and ask them if they'll come too."
Gobo walked out of the cave, and headed for the Great Hall. Just then, he ran into Red, who had just come back from a swim in the Fraggle pond.
"Oh, hey, Red," said Gobo, forcing a laugh. "I was just looking for you. I need to tell you something."
"What is it this time?" asked Red, frustrated. "Did you misplace your beloved postcards from your Uncle Matt again?"
"No, it's not that. Haven't you heard? Mokey and Wembley were just in the Gorgs' garden, and they claim that one of the Gorgs took away Madame Trash Heap!"
Red looked shocked. "That's terrible! What are we going to do?"
"It gets even worse." Gobo sighed. "Before the Trash Heap disappeared, she called out to Mokey and Wembley. She said that my Uncle Traveling Matt is in danger."
"Oh, no! You were really worried about him, weren't you?"
"Anyway, I'm planning to go on an expedition to find him. Mokey and Wembley are coming too. I was wondering, any chance you'll come with us?"
Red paused for a moment and looked thoughtful. Eventually, she spoke. "Why not? I want to find your Uncle Matt too. And you know I never pass up the chance to have an adventure."
Gobo sighed with relief. "Thank you so much, Red! I want all my friends on this journey with me, and now it looks like I'm going to have them. Hey, have you seen Boober? I want to ask him about the trip too."
"Oh, Boober's in his cave washing socks again. Like he always is."
"Great," muttered Gobo, and he set off to find Boober. At the moment, things were turning out well; he was going on a mission to find his uncle, and his friends were coming with him. But at the same time, Gobo couldn't help but feel worried. Without the Trash Heap, he might never be able to find his uncle. And besides, no Fraggle had ever been beyond the Gorgs' garden. Who knew what lurked out there?
Gobo made his way to Boober's cave, but before he could arrive there, he encountered Boober, who was on his way to Gobo's cave carrying a basket of clothes.
"Clean laundry for everybody!" proclaimed Boober, before Gobo could say a word to him. Boober reached into the basket and tossed Gobo a shirt, which fell to the floor. "Here's your shirt, Gobo, all clean again. Your vest's in here, too. I thought those stains would never go away after that incident in the Shining Caverns. But here it is, as good as new. Hey, have you seen Wembley? His other banana tree shirt is clean. Laundry for everybody!"
Boober began to walk away, proudly holding up his basket of laundry. But before he could get too far, Gobo chased after him. He finally caught up with Boober just outside the entrance to his cave.
"Hey, Boober," said Gobo, out of breath. "There's something I want to talk to you about."
A look of pure terror came over Boober's face. "Is it about Gorgs or germs or creepy, crawly things?"
"Look, Boober. I might as well just give it to you straight. I want you to come with me and my friends on an expedition into the Gorgs' garden to rescue my Uncle Traveling Matt. The Trash Heap said she's in danger, and then the Gorgs took her away, and we need to find her so she can tell us where my uncle is."
For a few seconds, Boober was silent. Then he dropped the basket of laundry to the ground. Shirts and scarves littered the floor.
"Are you crazy?" shouted Boober, turning as pale as a ghost. "You... want me to go into the Gorgs' garden and look all over for your Uncle? Never! Not in a million years! There are germs, and invisible garboils, and giant Fraggle-eating mud puddles, and..."
"Just shut up," said Gobo, disappointed. "I knew you wouldn't agree."
"But... but..." stammered Boober. "Who would do the laundry while I'm gone?"
"So that's what you're worried about? The Trash Heap is gone, my uncle is in danger, and all you care about is who'll do the laundry if you go? I'm ashamed of you."
Gobo stormed off. As he walked away, Boober shouted back, "You won't think it's so funny when you encounter one of those giant mud puddles! They filthy up your clothes like nothing else!"
 

TheRealFraggle

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CHAPTER FIVE

Gobo Fraggle was about to leave Fraggle Rock.
Two days ago, he'd heard that the Gorgs had taken away the Fraggles' oracle, Marjory the Trash Heap, and that his Uncle Traveling Matt was in danger. Now, him and his friends Wembley, Red, and Mokey were standing outside the entrance to the Gorgs' garden. Each one of them was carrying a basket filled to the brim with radishes and Doozer sticks. They all knew that in a few seconds, they'd have to leave the Rock, and venture out into the garden and beyond. But they also knew that there was a good chance they would never be coming back.
After blankly staring into the hole for several minutes, Gobo, who was standing at the front of the group, finally turned around and spoke to his friends.
"Take one final look, everybody. This might be the last time we see Fraggle Rock." Gobo paused. "At least for a long time," he added, somewhat clumsily.
Wembley, who was standing right behind Gobo, put his hand on his friend's shoulder. "Don't worry, Gobo," he said. "I'm sure it won't be that long. At least we have each other. If your Uncle Matt's out there, Gobo, we'll find him." Gobo smiled, but did not move from his position just outside the Fraggle hole.
"Well, what are waiting for?" piped up a voice behind him. It was Red. "Are we leaving or not?"
Finally, Gobo decided it was time to go. "Yes we are," he said. Then, raising his voice, he shouted "On to adventure!" The four Fraggles took one last look at the caves behind them, and began to walk out of the hole.
Before they could leave the garden, however, they were stopped by the frantic noise of running footsteps in the distance. Suddenly, Boober appeared in the tunnel. He was panting and out of breath. In one hand he was carrying a large bindle. "Wait for me!" he shouted.
"Boober!" Gobo said, surprised but happy. "I thought you said you weren't coming."
"I changed my mind. The World's Oldest Fraggle said that there was a 10% chance of rockslides in the Great Hall today, so I figure I'm safer out here."
"Well, Boober, I'm glad to have you with us," said Gobo.
Before he could say any more, Boober cut him off. "If I see any germs or monsters or mud-puddles, though, you can bet I'm running straight back to Fraggle Rock. You got that?"
"Yes, Boober," said Gobo with a sigh. "Now then, is everybody ready to go save my Uncle Matt?"
"Ready!" replied the four Fraggles in unison.
Quickly and quietly, the Fraggles crept out of the hole and into the garden. Gobo looked in every direction, but there were no Gorgs in sight. "The coast is clear," he whispered.
The Fraggles went through the garden, taking great care to be quiet as they walked. Soon, they were past the castle, and fields of radishes and other vegetables surrounded them everywhere. The smell made Gobo's mouth water.
Suddenly, Gobo heard a muffled cry as Wembley tripped over a large rock and fell to the ground. At that instant, a large net descended from the highest branch of a nearby tree, and went swooping to the ground. Wembley ducked out of the way just in time to avoid being caught inside it.
"Get out of the way!" shouted Gobo, and Wembley ran away from the tree to join the other Fraggles.
"The Gorgs set traps for us!" said Wembley, terrified. "What are we going to do now?"
Gobo thought for a second, but before he could speak, they heard a loud voice exclaim "What was that noise?" The five Fraggles turned and looked. Pa Gorg had left the castle, and was coming right toward them.
Pa walked up to the tree where the net was suspended a few inches above the ground, empty. He examined the net, feeling inside it as if to make sure there was not an extremely Fraggle inside. At length, he spoke. "The net is down," he muttered to himself, "but there are no Fraggles inside."
Suddenly, a change of expression came over Pa's face. With horror, the Fraggles realized that he was looking right at them, crouching a few feet away. "There are the Fraggles!" he bellowed. Then he leaped into the air, his hands outstretched. He fell to the ground mere inches away from them, his hands empty.
Quickly, the Fraggles ran as fast as they could, past the castle and the vegetables, until they found a bush to hide in on the outskirts of the garden, near the former location of the Trash Heap. The Gorg was gone... but so were their radishes. In their haste to escape, the Fraggles had dropped their baskets, which were still lying near the castle.
"What are we going to now?" asked Gobo.
"I've still got my bindle," offered Boober. "It has clean socks for everyone."
Gobo sighed. "We can get more radishes later. For now, I wanna explore the area where the Trash Heap used to live, and see if we can find any signs of where she might be now."
The others agreed, and once they could be sure that they were no longer being pursued by Gorgs, they ventured out to the place where the oracle, the Trash Heap, used to sit and spend her days dispensing wisdom to the Fraggles.
It looked as though the Trash Heap had never lived there. The only signs that remained of her were a few pieces of odd garbage lying on the grass. There was no sign of Marjory, nor of her two companions, Philo and Gunge.
That's what they thought at first. When Gobo inspected the area closer, he noticed something surprising. Lying on the ground in the place of the Trash Heap was a note, written on a piece of yellowing, dirt-covered paper. Gobo brushed off some of the dust and held it to his face. At the bottom, it said, in bold, crude letters: "Your oracle, the all-knowing Trash Heap (Marjory)".
Gobo turned to face the other Fraggles. "The Trash Heap left me a note," said Gobo, incredulous.
"Read it to us," said Wembley.
 

TheRealFraggle

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CHAPTER SIX

"This note, which you are looking at
"Won't help you find your Uncle Matt
"Remember this, before your chase
"You'll find him not in Outer Space
"Your oracle,
"The all-knowing Trash Heap (Marjory)"
These words were written, in large, messy handwriting, on a filthy, crumpled piece of paper that Gobo Fraggle had found lying on the ground in the place where Marjory the Trash Heap once stood. It was all that remained of the Fraggles' former oracle.
As soon as he picked up the note and read it, a thousand thoughts passed through Gobo's head. How had Madame Trash Heap left the note there? Did it prove that she knew where Traveling Matt was? And, most importantly, did it contain any clues as to where Gobo might find him?
For a long time, everyone was silent. Finally, Mokey spoke.
"But... what does it mean?" she said. The other Fraggles just stared at Gobo, waiting for a reply. Boober began to inch away, as if contemplating whether he should turn and run back to the rock.
"I don't know," said Gobo at length, poring over the note once again. "But maybe I can find out," he added, as he read the words over and over.
"What are we going to do now?" asked Wembley. Meanwhile, Red had resorted to holding a firm grip on Boober's tail to keep him from running away.
"Let me think," muttered Gobo, and all was silent again for minutes. Finally he spoke up again, a smile coming over his face.
"I think," Gobo said quietly, as though he was still unsure of himself, "I think she's saying... we're looking in the right place. My Uncle Matt didn't go back to Outer Space. Maybe... you can't get there from the Gorgs' garden at all. So he's somewhere out here," Gobo said, pointing into the distance, "and we just need to leave this garden and go where no Fraggle has gone before. Then we'll find him."
"But what about the Trash Heap," asked Red.
"The Trash Heap is gone," replied Gobo solemnly. "She gave us all the help she could. It's up to us now."
"What about our food?" asked Boober, remembering the radishes that had been left behind in the garden.
"You're right," said Gobo. "We can't go on a journey into the unknown without food. I'll go back to the castle and see if I can find the radishes we dropped."
"But what about the Gorg?" screeched Boober in a voice halfway between a whisper and a scream.
"I'll go instead," piped up Wembley. "I am training to become the chief radish-gatherer for Fraggle Rock, after all," he added with a chuckle.
"But Wembley-" replied Gobo.
"No. It's okay. I'll be back soon. If I take too long, you can come and help me."
"Wembley," Gobo muttered under his breath. "Always jumping into the thick of things." But he made no attempt to stop him.
Wembley scuttled off to go and retrieve the radishes. Gobo drew a long sigh and sat down against a boulder. He took something out of his pocket: a postcard from his Uncle Traveling Matt.
"You brought that with you?" asked Red.
"How else am I supposed to remember him?"

Wembley hurried through the garden, sweating and out of breath. His eyes darted back and forth, but he saw no signs of the enormous, hairy Gorgs who had tried to capture him and his friends just a short while before. Maybe they went back into the castle, he thought. Maybe they gave up on trying to catch Fraggles. But at the same time, he felt as though there could be one sneaking up behind him at any moment...
Soon, Wembley arrived at the tree where he had almost been caught in the Fraggle net. He looked down to the ground, expecting the grass to be littered with radishes and pieces of Doozer constructions. But all he could see were a handful of radishes spread out across the ground. There was no sign of the baskets that they had been carried in.
Apprehensively, Wembley looked in every direction, wondering whether the great purple Gorg was preparing to pounce on him the instead he picked up the radishes. But there was still not a soul in the garden expect for himself. Maybe the other radishes fell somewhere else, he thought. At least I can get these ones, and maybe pick a few more. With that, Wembley bent down and picked up the first radish.
Suddenly, there was a loud noise, Wembley felt himself flying up into the air, as he rocketed farther and farther away from the ground. Then he came to an abrupt stop. He tried to move, but his mobility was greatly restricted. Then, he realized what had happened to him: he had been caught in a Gorg trap.
Wembley was trapped inside a large net - the same one which he had narrowly avoided being caught in earlier. The net, attached, as before, to the highest branch of the tree, was suspended a view inches above the ground. The wind made it blow back and forth, making Wembley feel queasy.
All at once, Wembley heard thunderous footsteps in the distance, growing nearer. A few seconds later, he found himself staring directly into the face of the same Gorg who had tried to capture him and his friends earlier.
The Gorg laughed, a deep rumble: "Hohohoho!" Then Wembley felt great, prodding fingers reaching into the net, clutching at him. Everything went dark as the Gorg's hand closed around him, and he felt himself being whisked out of the net and taken somewhere. The Gorg's arm swung back and forth, and he shook with every step the hairy beast took.
Finally, after over a minute, Wembley was roughly dropped onto a table somewhere in the garden. Quickly, Wembley made a break for it, but the Gorg knocked him down again and kept him pinned to the table with one finger.
On the table next to Wembley was a large, wooden box, shaped like a birdcage. On the top was a handle, and on one side was a large knob. With horror, Wembley realized that it was a new kind of Fraggle trap,
With his one free hand, the Gorg grabbed the knob on the side of the box, and a wooden panel in the shape of a door opened. The Gorg picked up Wembley once again, and before Wembley could even struggle, he found himself inside the box. The Gorg closed the door of the trap, surrounding Wembley in darkness again.
The box, although large, was narrow, and not spacious inside, although it was long enough that Wembley could not touch the roof of it even by jumping. There were no holes inside the trap, and as hard as he pushed, Wembley couldn't open the door from the inside.
For a few seconds nothing happened, and Wembley thought the Gorg had left. Then he felt the trap being picked up, and he was carried somewhere else.
 

TheRealFraggle

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CHAPTER SEVEN

Darkness was falling in the Gorgs' garden. Gobo Fraggle sat on the grass, his back against a tree. He was holding a postcard in his hand, but the light was growing dim enough that he could hardly make out the words. His friends were sitting nearby. Red and Mokey had already fallen asleep, while Boober was standing on top of a rock a few feet away, standing vigilantly. He was keep watch, ensuring that the Gorgs did not catch them. Every time he heard a noise, Boober would utter a scream and fall off his rock.
"What do you think happened to Wembley?" Boober asked at last, breaking the long silence. Gobo casually tossed aside the postcard he was holding.
"He probably went back to Fraggle Rock," Gobo muttered bitterly. "Long journeys are always very stressful on him. He probably dashed back home as soon as he was out of our sight."
"But Gobo..."
"You don't think he would do a thing like that?" Gobo chuckled. "Remember, you were the one who almost didn't come on this trip at all. And then only because you were afraid of rockslides."
"For the last time, Gobo, it's dangerous out here! There all sorts of creatures who will eat Fraggles in a heartbeat!"
But Gobo was listening. His head was tilted in the other direction, as he stared blankly into the night sky. Several stars were already visible, and the Gorg moon was shining brightly in the distance. In front of Gobo was the castle, which in the twilight had become nothing more than a large, vague shape.
"I'm going to look for Wembley," Gobo said at last, turning to face Boober again. But Boober didn't respond.
Gobo gently prodded Red, who was lying next to him. "Wake up," he said.
Red sat up, muttering unintelligibly. She rubbed her eyes and looked around. "What is it?" she said at last, seeing Gobo leaning over her.
"Wembley's been gone for hours. We need to go look for him,"
"What?" Red mumbled. Then Mokey sat up. She had been woken up by Gobo's conversation with Boober.
"Come on, Red," Mokey said, patting her friend on the back. "You heard what Gobo said. We need to find Wembley."
"Well, let's go then," said Gobo, as he picked up his postcards and crammed them into his pocket. He shot a slightly angry look at Boober. "You'll want to stay here on your boulder, I suppose."
"And why would you say that?" snapped Boober, leaping off his rock and facing Gobo. "Just because I'm genuinely concerned for my own safety on this mission doesn't mean I'm going to stand around and let my friend get thumped to death by Gorgs! Though goodness knows that'll happen to you soon enough if you keep sitting there, staring at your postcards and paying no attention to the dangers of the outside world!"
"Oh yeah? Is that what you think? I'm a natural-born leader. Don't act for a minute like I don't keep an eye out for danger! This whole journey is so I can rescue my uncle."
"Well, try and rescue yourself first," Boober said, before falling silent and reluctantly joining the other Fraggles.
The four Fraggles crept through the garden, frequently stumbling or having to feel for the surroundings, as it was now almost completely dark in the garden. The only solace Gobo felt was knowing that the Gorgs were almost certainly asleep in the castle, and that he didn't have to worry about being chased by them again.
"Wembley!" Gobo called out loudly as he walked through the garden. The other Fraggles preceded to do the same. For minutes there was no response. But when Gobo returned to the spot where the Fraggles had lost their radish-baskets before, he heard a faint noise coming from somewhere in the distance.
"Wembley!" Gobo called out again, louder this time. The only sound he heard was of his three companions shouting the name also. But finally, he heard a faint voice saying "Gobo? Is that you?"
"Wembley?" Gobo shouted. This time, the response was immediate. "Gobo? It's me! Help!"
"Where are you, Wembley?" asked Gobo, growing increasingly nervous. There didn't seem to be anywhere nearby where Wembley could be.
Then came Wembley's response. "I'm up here!"
For a few seconds, Gobo wondered what Wembley meant. Then he looked up at the tree they were standing under. There at the very top, hanging from a thin, protruding branch, was a large, wooden box with a very familiar shape. A Fraggle trap!
"Are you up there?" shouted Gobo. "In the tree?"
"Yes!" came Wembley's frightened response. "Get me out of here!"
"Don't worry! We'll get you out of here!"
Gobo turned away from the tree, and faced his friends. "What are we going to do?" he asked.
"It's hopeless," replied Boober, his blue skin turning a pale shade of green. "It's too late. We don't have much time before Wembley... suffocates to death!" He devolved into tears.
"Don't say that!" snapped back Mokey. "Fraggles can go without air for a long time. He'll be fine as long as we can find a way to get him out."
Gobo started thinking. "Maybe I could climb to the top of the tree and try to push the box down? Then the rest of you could stand the bottom and catch it when it falls."
"That will never work!" said Boober. "That's a big trap! You'll never be strong enough to push it."
"Maybe if I had a long stick, I could climb onto one of the lower branches and try to poke at it until it falls off."
"You're a desperate, desperate Fraggle," said Boober, shaking his head. "But we can always try. Anything to prevent yet another Fraggle death at the hands of the Gorgs!"
Boober, Red, and Mokey immediately set off looking around the garden for a suitably long stick. Gobo shouted to Wembley, "Don't worry! I'll be back soon!" and then joined the others in their search.
The Fraggles spread through the garden, searching the ground all over, but it was hard to see during nighttime. Boober ran off to search under a nearby tree, while Gobo, Red, and Mokey gathered to look through a pile of leaves that had sat there since the previous fall.
Suddenly, Boober screamed. He had been frightened by the sudden call of a bird as it ran out of the tree. He immediately began running, but he didn't get far from the tree before he tripped over a small stone lying on the ground.
WHACK! Down came a large net which had been concealed at the top of the tree. The net snatched up Boober and then jerked back upwards into the upper branches of the tree.
"Oh no!" Gobo cried. "Not Boober too!"
Just then, there was a sound of thunderously loud footsteps echoing ahead of them. It was Junior Gorg, who had been standing guard outside the castle and was alerted by the sound of the net catching Boober.
While Gobo, Red, and Mokey hid behind a small boulder, Junior Gorg approached the exact tree where Boober Fraggle was now hanging, having passed out from fear the instant the net swooped down and caught him. Junior was standing right by the tree, examining the net.
"Hey, Pa!" he called. "You caught another Fwaggle in your net!"
More footsteps were heard in the distance, and Junior's father, Pa Gorg, came running up to the tree as well. He was carrying a Fraggle trap in each hand.
"What was that, Junior? Did I get another one?" Pa asked. Then he caught sight of the net. "Oh my, look at that. I guess my nets really are working. I'll just put this little fella in this trap now." Pa reached into the net and plucked out Boober, who awoke at that exact moment and uttered a shrill scream of terror. Pa dropped him into the wooden trap and closed the lid. He passed the trap to Junior. "Hang this somewhere on the tree," he said.
"Oh no!" Gobo said out loud, and then quickly clamped his hands over his mouth. But it was too late.
"Hey, look!" Junior said, pointing directly at the spot where Gobo and his friends were hiding. "Here are some more Fwaggles, Pa!" Then Junior reached down and scooped up the three Fraggles before they could run.
For a few seconds, Gobo was held inside Pa's large, sweaty hand, sandwiches tightly in between Red and Mokey. Then Pa's hand opened up and dropped the three Fraggles inside the trap, which was quickly shut tightly.
During all his years exploring small and tight caves, Gobo had never experienced claustrophobia before. But being inside this small, windowless wooden box made him feel as though the walls were closing in on him. The trap was clearly not meant to hold more than one Fraggle, and the Fraggles were covered in dust, as Pa had grabbed a lot of soil along with the Fraggles when he picked them up. Red sneezed twice, and Gobo began to cough.
"So what do we do now?" asked Red, before another sneeze came over her. Mokey tried to brush some of the dust off her friend's face.
Gobo turned to face Red, intending to respond, before the trap, which had been held relatively steadily inside Pa Gorg's hand for some time, began to shake, as Pa carried it to a tree some way away, and then lifted it onto the highest branch, where he hung it. The trap began to sway back and forth.
"Nobody move!" said Gobo. "This trap is too heavy, with the three of us inside it. If we move too much, the branch could break and we'll fall."
Red shook her head in disbelief, while Mokey tried feebly to obey Gobo's command. But there was nothing they could do at the moment. They were trapped, and no one was coming to rescue them.
 

TheRealFraggle

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CHAPTER EIGHT

"But Ma!" pleaded Pa Gorg. "It's early in the morning! Can't I do it later?"
"No buts, my King," replied Ma Gorg, in the low-pitched, baby-like voice she always employed when persuading her husband to do one thing or another. "I don't care if they're in traps. If there are Fraggles in this garden, I want them gone now!"
Pa Gorg was standing outside the castle. It was early morning, and the sun was just beginning to peak over the trees, casting a pale orange liht over the garden. Pa had been roughly awoken just a few minutes before when Ma, who had woken up before him, stormed back into their bedroom after going for a stroll in the garden, and demanded to know why there were wooden boxes hanging from some of the trees. And, predictably, the instant she'd been told that there were Fraggles inside the boxes, she'd demanded that they be gotten rid of. Immediately.
"Alright, duckykins," Pa said at last, sighing deeply. "I'll take care of the Fraggles right away. What is it you want me to do with them?"
"Oh, you could throw them in the pond, I guess. And I don't want to see them swimming out again..."
"Yes, dear,"

Gobo Fraggle peered through a small hole in his trap. He had managed to make the hole himself by chipping away at the wall of the box using the only hard object any of the three Fraggles had on them: a medal that Red had won for winning a swimming competition once. On any other day, Gobo would have laughed at Red for carrying such a thing with her, but it had proved useful for making a small hole in the wood before it had gotten too bent and dented to use any more. The damaged medal now lay on the floor of the trap, while Red stood in a corner and sulked, refusing to look at Gobo. To her, it didn't matter that the medal had been sacrificed for a good reason.
Gobo looked through the hole. Daylight had arrived, and in the distance he could make out the shapes of two of the Gorgs, the king and queen. For minutes they stood outside the castle, talking. Then, with horror, Gobo realized that the purple one was walking toward the very tree where him and his friends were hanging.
The purple Gorg arrived at the tree where the Fraggles were caught, but he didn't touch the trap. Inside, he turned in the direction of the castle and yelled "Junior!"
For a few seconds, there was silence. Then a voice yelled "I'm coming, Daddy!" and another Gorg, Junior, appeared by his father's side. The two began to talk, and Gobo put his ear to the hole so he could understand them.
"I have a job for you, son," said Pa. "Remember how I set those traps all over the garden to catch those Fraggles that keep sneaking in?"
"Why, yes, Daddy," replied Junior.
"And you remember how I caught a whole bunch of them, and put them in these wooden cages?"
"Of course,"
"Well, I'm going to take these Fraggles and throw them in the pond."
Junior gasped. "But Pa! You can't do that. They're only Fwaggles!"
Pa spoke in a voice that was almost a growl. "I said, I'm taking these Fraggles to the pond and throwing them in. And you're going to help me!"
"But Pa..."
"No buts! I'll take this trap." Pa pointed to the trap where Gobo, Red, and Mokey were caught. "There's two more traps in the garden, with one Fraggle each in 'em. You grab those two, and meet me at the pond. And don't let the Fraggles out!"
Quickly, Gobo pulled his ear away from the hole and turned to face the other two Fraggles.
"What did the Gorgs say?" asked an anxious Mokey.
Before Gobo could respond, Pa grabbed the trap and began to walk away with it, toward the pond at the edge of the garden. A terrified Gobo quickly explained the Gorgs' plan to his friends.
"The Gorg is taking us to the pond," Gobo said, speaking in a whisper so Pa wouldn't hear him. "He's going to throw us in."
"Red and Mokey both gasped. "Oh no!" said Mokey. "What are we going to do?"
"I haven't a clue," said Gobo sadly. "I need to think." Gobo looked at the hole he had made with Red's medal. "I don't think I can make this any bigger," he said, pointing to the hole.
"Maybe we can escape when the Gorg opens the trap to drop us in," said Red. "And if not, maybe we can swim out. I'm a great swimmer."
"I know, Red. You don't need to brag about your talents in a situation like this." Gobo muttered something under his breath and continued to examine the hole in the trap."

Soon, Pa Gorg arrived at the pond. He placed the Fraggle trap on the grass beside him, and turned around. "Junior?" he called. "Where are you?"
This time, there was no response for over a minute. But soon, Junior Gorg appeared, running up to the pond with a Fraggle trap in each hand.
"Well, there are you, Junior, my boy," said Pa warmly, slapping his son on the shoulder. "Are you ready to throw these Fraggles in the river?"
"But Pa," said Junior, "we can't."
"And why not?" said Pa, growing frustrated again.
Junior held up one of the traps. "One of the Fwaggles is missing," said Junior. He passed the trap to Pa. Pa examined the trap. Sure enough, there was a large hole in it, and no Fraggle in sight.
"I don't believe it," said Pa at last. "The Fraggle must have chewed its way out. Those are desperate creatures, those Fraggles." He paused. "But no matter. We'll catch that rogue Fraggle later. For now, let's throw these ones in the water."
Junior heaved a deep sigh. "Okay, Daddy," he said in a sulky voice. Junior held up the other, still intact trap, and began to turn the knob that would release the Fraggle inside.
"What are you doing, you dunderhead?" spat Pa, snatching the trap out of his son's hands.
"I'm letting out the Fwaggle so we can thwow it in the pond."
"You idiot! If you do that, the Fraggle will just escape. Why do you think I built these traps the way they are? We throw the traps in, and they fill up with water and the Fraggles drown. Then they can't possibly escape. Simple as that."
"But Pa! That's terrible!"
"I don't care if that's what you think!" Pa tossed the trap back to Junior. "Now prove you're a real man and throw this in the pond yourself."
With that, Pa picked up the trap containing Gobo, Red, and Mokey, and tossed it into the pond.

For all the hours that him and his friends had been trapped, Gobo had never lost hope that they would find a way out. But now, it looked as though they were doomed for certain. As he felt the trap flying through the air, Gobo began to say goodbye to his friends. Then the trap fell into the cold, still waters of the pond.
The trap plummeted to the bottom of the pond like a stone. But as soon as it reached the bottom, it struck a large stone that was embedded in the sand underneath, and promptly burst into several pieces.
With the trap broken, the three Fraggles were freed. Red and Mokey, who had been in one corner of the trap, were unharmed. But Gobo had knocked his head against the stone, and seemed to be unconscious.
Not noticing Gobo's plight, Red quickly grabbed Mokey by the hand and began swimming to the top of the cave. When they reached the surface, Red helped Mokey back onto the grass. But as soon as she was out of the water, she warned Red. "I think Gobo's hurt."
With not a moment to lose, Red dove back into the pond and swam to the bottom as fast as she could. There was Gobo, lying limply on the floor of the pond. Quickly, Red grabbed him and swam as fast as she could to the top again. Finally, they surfaced, and Red lay Gobo on the grass. Gobo coughed and spluttered, then sat up and looked around. "Where am I?" he asked.
"You're okay," said Red happily. But all was not well. Before Red or Mokey could do anything to stop it, Pa Gorg grabbed the trap out of Junior's hands, evidently preparing to throw it in.
Just at that moment, they heard a familiar voice loudly calling out "Hey, you stupid Gorg!" The Fraggles saw a small, blue shape flying through the air and landing on Pa Gorg's leg.
"Is that your face, or did your neck throw up?" said the voice again. "You're so ugly, when you were born, your mother slapped you!"
"Who said that?" said Pa Gorg, swatting at his leg. "Is that another Fraggle?" In the nick of the time, the blue blur leaped off Pa's leg and ran toward Red and Mokey. It was Boober.
"How did you?" began Red, but Boober cut her off.
"I'll distract the Gorg. Red, Mokey, you grab Wembley's trap and carry it away. I'll distract the Gorg. Then me and Gobo can run for it."
Red tried to protest, but Boober refused to listen, and continued to yell at Pa. Quickly, Mokey and Red grabbed Wembley's trap and hoisted it on their backs. Then they ran as far as they could into the distance.
When they arrived at a safe hiding place behind a particularly wide tree, Red and Mokey got to the matter of freeing Wembley. It took their combined strength to turn the knob on the trap's door, and when they opened it, they found Wembley unconscious inside.
The two laid Wembley on the grass and attempted to speak to him. "Wembley? Wembley?" they said. "Wake up!"
Finally, Wembley's eyes began to flutter, and eventually opened. Then he sat up and stared at Red and Mokey.
"What happened?" asked Wembley. "Am I safe?" Then he realized he was no longer inside this trap. "I'm free!"
"Yes," said Red. "You're free. But the Gorgs are after us. We need to wait for Gobo and Boober to get back."
"Are we still going on our journey?" asked Wembley.
"Of course," said Mokey. "But we need to get as far away from the Gorgs as possible."
At that moment, Boober and Gobo came running toward them. Gobo, still recovering from his ordeal in the pond, was leaning on Boober. The two quickly ducked behind the tree where the others were hiding.
"Are you okay, Gobo?" asked Mokey.
"Sure, I'm fine," said Gobo. "Just a little weak."
"So how did you get out of your trap?" asked Red.
Boober proudly held up a small stone. "I was able to chip away a hole in my trap with the lucky pebble that I always carry with me. I've been free for hours. You know, it's remarkable how weak and rotten the wood in those traps is. I'm surprised you guys didn't get yourselves out."
"So," said Wembley, turning to Gobo, "what do we do now?"
 

TheRealFraggle

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CHAPTER NINE

A storm was brewing in the desert. Though it was only the late afternoon, the thick layer of clouds in the sky had made it nearly as dark as night. As Jerry drove home from work, he heard a thunderclap in the distance. Jerry turned on the radio to avoid hearing it. In the distance, he could already see the house where he lived with his dog, Sprocket.
Sprocket was named after the dog his father, Jerome Crystal Sr., had owned, who had at one point lived in the same house. Jerry had always wanted a dog, and when he bought Sprocket three years ago, he gave him the name as a tribute to his father. Sprocket looked very little like his namesake - he had pointed ears and a short, shiny coat of dark brown fur - but Jerry still had the picture on his mantelpiece of his father posing with the first Sprocket, and thought that Sprocket's personality, visible even through the photograph, reminded him greatly of his own dog. Jerry had even saved the bright yellow food dish, marked "Sprocket" in large, black letters, that his father had fed Sprocket out of for so many years. But it was too valuable to use for feeding Sprocket II. Instead, the bowl was in a box in his attic, with his most prized possessions.
Jerry threw open the door to his house, glad to be out of the storm. Immediately he was greeted by Sprocket, who had been lying in the corner on his favorite cushion, glancing at the pictures on the wall. Sprocket barked eagerly and slurped his owner's face.
Jerry chuckled. "I'm glad to see you too," he said, as he took a can of dog food out of the cupboard and filled Sprocket's food dish. The dish was bright yellow, like the one belonging to the previous Sprocket which he had stored in a box. Jerry placed the bowl of food next to the cushion where Sprocket had been lying, and the energetic dog quickly ran over to it and happily began to eat.
There was another clap of thunder, louder than the first, which caused Sprocket to knock over his food dish and sent the dog into a frantic series of barks.
"Don't worry, Sprocket," said Jerry, placing his hand on the dog's collar. "It's only a little thunder." As he bent down to pick up the bits of dog food that littered the floor, Jerry glanced out the window, and saw a flash of lightning nearby. At that very moment, the house was plunged into darkness. The lightning had knocked out the power line.
Sprocket, even more terrified than before, began to bark even louder. Jerry cursed loudly as he tripped over an ottoman. "I'm supposed to do an assignment for work!" he muttered. "How am I supposed to get any work done in total darkness?"
Jerry went to his bedroom to find a flashlight. Then he went into the kitchen, where he began looking through the drawers for candles with which to light the house. Eventually he found a box in the bottom drawer, and then had to use the flashlight to search through the cupboards for a lighter. Jerry then walked through the house, and placed the lit candles in each room to provide light. Finally, he retreated into his now dimly lit bedroom to do his work.
Sprocket stayed in the bedroom with his owner for a while, but then went into the workshop next door to sleep. He snuggled up on a spot on the floor in the center of the room, next to a table on which Jerry had placed several candles to illuminate the room. Then he curled up in a ball and fell fast asleep.
Even in his sleep, however, Sprocket could still hear the deafeningly loud thunderclaps that boomed in the sky every few minutes. After one of these thunderclaps, Sprocket's body gave a quick jerk before he returned to sleep. However, he had bumped into a table leg, causing one of the candles, which was precariously close to the edge of the table, to fall off and hit the floor. Soon, the room began to set on fire.

The Fraggles had been walking for days.
It had been two days since they had left the Gorgs' garden. Although they failed to retrieve their lost radishes after their ordeal at the pond, Gobo had discovered a tree near the edge of the garden which bore round, pink fruits which were edible to Fraggles. Gobo and the others had gathered as many of the fruits as they could to eat on their journey, but their supply was beginning to run out, and the sour taste of the fruits made them long for radishes and Doozer constructions.
After leaving the garden, the Fraggles had found themselves in an area full of wide open fields, dotted here and there with a few trees. There were no signs of any life outside of the garden, and they were no longer being pursued by the Gorgs, so they had slept the last two nights on the grass, staring up at the night sky and marveling at the sight of more stars than they could ever have imagined. Every day they would walk for as long as they could, stopping only occasionally to rest and eat their fruits. But so far, it seemed that this was a part of the world in which no one lived, and there were no signs of Uncle Traveling Matt everywhere.
On the third day of their expedition, the Fraggles came upon a large forest, and they entered to see where it led. A small brook ran through the forest, and tree creatures sang above them, but there was no sign of anything else. Therefore, they decided to spend the night in the forest and leave the next morning to explore somewhere else.
The Fraggles set up camp in a quiet area near the entrance to the forest. Gobo and Wembley slept under one tree, Mokey and Red under another, and Boober slept behind a rock, as he liked to do. As Gobo leant his head back against the tree and stared into the black sky dotted with stars, he reflected back on his journey so far. There seemed to be nothing out here except for a few small animals. If he couldn't find any signs of his uncle's whereabouts in the next few days, it might be smarter to turn around and go home.
Gobo stayed up for hours, worrying. When he finally fell asleep, it was only for a short time. He was roughly awoken in the middle of the night by Boober, who also woke up Wembley, Red, and Mokey.
"What is it?" Gobo said sleepily, rubbing his eyes.
"I hear noises out there," said Boober nervously, pointing behind himself to the unexplored area of the forest. "I think something terrible's out there!"
"There's nothing terrible out there, Boober," said Gobo, growing frustrated with his friend. Gobo listened closely, but all he could hear were the sounds made by the tree creatures at the top of the trees in the forest.
"It's just animals, Boober," Gobo said as he leaned back against the tree. "Now please go away and stop bothering me."
Gobo closed his eyes and tried to drift off again. But just then, he heard thunderously loud footsteps approaching in the distance.
 

TheRealFraggle

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CHAPTER TEN

The footsteps grew closer and closer. Several of the Fraggles screamed, and even Gobo began to tremble with fear. Looking into the distance, Gobo saw a large, dark shape moving toward them through the forest. The shape was almost as tall as the trees in the forest, and when it got closer, Gobo realized with horror that it was a Gorg.
In the span of a few seconds, many terrible thoughts raced through Gobo's head. They had been pursued by the Gorgs all along, ever since they left the garden. Most likely, the Gorg following them in the forest was the purple one who had set the traps that nearly killed them. He was probably carrying more traps to put them in right now, and perhaps he was going to take them back to the pond, or else throw them in the brook that ran through the forest. After all, the Gorg certainly knew this area better than the Fraggles did, and they wouldn't stand a chance if they had to escape from him.
Then the Gorg finally caught up with the Fraggles. Standing in front of them in all its glory, the Gorg looked down, staring directly at the five Fraggles huddled together under the trees.
"Fraggles?" said the Gorg. "What are Fraggles like you doing hiding here in the forest?"
The first thing Gobo noticed was that the Gorg didn't sound like either of the two male Gorgs that he had encountered in the garden. Then Gobo realized that he looked different as well. Though it was hard to make out the details in the darkness, this Gorg was taller than any of the three in the garden, and his fur appeared to be lighter as well.
"It's okay," Gobo whispered to Wembley, the Fraggle nearest to him. "This is a different Gorg." But Wembley continued to cower in fear, trying to shrink out of sight. Boober did the same, while Red was evidently considering running away and had to be pulled back by Mokey.
"Wh-what do you want with us?" Gobo piped up, using every ounce of courage he had to look the Gorg in the face.
"What do I want?" the Gorg replied. "I think a more obvious question would be 'what do you want?' I mean, I do not suppose you want to be cowering under the trees in this dark forest."
"Er, no," replied Gobo, trembling a little less but still somewhat apprehensive. Remembering how the purple Gorg in the garden had vehemently believed himself to be the king of the universe, Gobo hastily tacked on "your highness" at the end of the sentence.
The Gorg laughed. "I do not wish you to call me that," he said. "I believe you are confusing me with another Gorg you may have encountered. Yes, I know of him who dwells in the castle nearby, and I believe I am correct in assuming that is he you are thinking of when you call me by that title."
"Yes, sir," replied Gobo.
"Rest assured, I am merely a simple county-dwelling Gorg who does not need such flattery. You need not fear me, my dear Fraggle. I have no intent to harm you. Might I ask what it is you are doing here in the Forest of the Fallen Gorg?"
"We are looking for someone. A friend, who disappeared in the garden. We're trying to find him,"
"Well now, who is it you are looking for?"
"A fellow Fraggle, sir. His name is Matthew. Where I come from he's known as Traveling Matt."
A knowing expression came over the Gorg's face. "I believe I have heard of this Traveling Matt." Noticing Gobo's surprised expression, the Gorg continued. "You see, I know something about Fraggles. I am not as ignorant to their ways and culture as the Gorgs whom you may be familiar with."
There was a long pause, but neither Gobo nor any of the other Fraggles said anything. The forest was quiet enough that you could hear a Doozer helmet drop. Finally, the Gorg spoke up again.
"Well, I daresay you would d rather be somewhere else than here in this cold, dark forest. Come, and I will take you to my cottage. You can rest there, and I have food that I believe you Fraggles will like."
There was another long pause, as Gobo weighed the options in his head and thought about whether it was best to come with the Gorg.
"I don't trust that Gorg, Gobo," Wembley whispered in Gobo's ear. "I think he wants to thump us,"
"I don't trust him either," replied Gobo. "But he's the best chance we have of finding my uncle." Gobo turned to face the other three Fraggles. "We're going to follow-"
"My name is Gorgorian," said the Gorg, holding out his hand. "Come now, and I will take you to my home."
Although all of Gobo's friends seemed somewhat worried about going to the house of a Gorg so soon after what happened at the pond, they ultimately agreed to come. Only Boober refused, and tried to run out of the forest to escape. In the end, Red had to climb up a tree and carry Boober down, and she still had to drag him along by the tail for the first few minutes of their trip to the cottage.
Gorgorian took a path to the right which soon led out of the forest, and the Fraggles followed. It was hard for them to keep up with the long strides of the tall Gorg, and often they would fall so far behind that they could barely make him out like a speck in the distance. But soon, they found themselves out of the forest, and back in the countryside, surrounded by grass below and dark, star-dotted sky above.
After leaving the forest, it took nearly another hour for the Fraggles to reach Gorgorian's cottage, which was built on a small hill. And when at least they arrived, it still took minutes more before they could climb up the hill and reach the door to the cottage, where Gorgorian was standing outside waiting for them.
The cottage was small, very far removed from the castle of the other Gorgs. When they finally reached the door, Gorgorian opened it with a long silver key that he had been carrying, and they stepped inside.
It was nearly as dark inside the castle as outside, but this was soon fixed when Gorgorian produced a box of matches and lit a series of candles, which were perched on a high table. With the cottage now fully lit, the Fraggles got their first good look at Gorgorian.
As they had noticed before, Gorgorian was taller than the other Gorgs who lived in the garden, and his head almost seemed to touch the roof of the cottage. His fur was a light orange, and he had a thick beard of slightly darker fur on his face, which was flecked here and there with bits of gray. His hair, of a similar shape, hung far down the sides of his face, and he wore a low a long black cloak over a dark purple shirt, and black boots. His face bore a strong resemblances to the other Gorgs, but with noticeable differences - among his more striking features was a long scar on the side of his nose.
After the Fraggles had taken a good look at their host, they began to explore the cottage. It wasn't as small as it had looked from the outside; although it consisted mostly of a single room, the room was rather large, and well-furnished. It contained a tall bed, with a frame of ornate wood; a large table with chairs that reminded Gobo of pictures he had seen in Silly Creature history-books; and the walls contained many framed portraits of other Gorgs. Other strange and impressive artifacts inside the cottage, which were housed in glass cases in the corners, included a helmet, large enough to fit a Gorg, and what looked like an ancient sword.
"I can tell you are impressed by my collection," said Gorgorian, who had noticed Gobo staring in awe at the objects in the cottage. "I'm a collector of ancient Gorgish artifacts. I like to remember the olden days of the Gorgs' civilization, when there really was a kingdom, and the Gorgs fought real wars instead of making plans for a battle that will never come."
"Were you alive back then?" asked Gobo, curious.
"I was," replied Gorgorian, "but I was only a lad then. It has been a very long time since there was truly a Gorg kingdom. As far as I know, I am among the only Gorgs who remain."
"What happened to the others?" Gobo said, his curiosity piqued.
"No one can say for certain. The Gorgs you know would probably tell you that they were killed in a mighty battle." Gorgorian sighed. "But I choose to believe that we merely... died out."
There was a long silence, during which Boober made another escape attempt and had to be reeled back in by both Red and Wembley. Eventually, Gorgorian took his eyes away from the pictures on the wall and turned to face Gobo again.
"I imagine that you and your friends will want to rest now, after your long journey." Gorgorian beckoned to Gobo and the others. "Come. I will make beds for you in the cellar."
 
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