Just off of their near death experience with a bridge troll named Greg, Mitch and Phil found themselves walking at a slower pace due to their heavier legs. They had also taken a brief recess from speaking until Phil decided to share his latest acerbic thought. “So, Mitch,” Phil began, “we almost died back there on a quest to get your Tiger Card back.”
“Yes,” Mitchel responded focusing more on his legs made of stone traversing the terrain than wherever Phil was going with his latest remark.
“That was the kind of experience that makes you think,” Phil stammered on as best as he could. His out of breath manner of speaking coupled with Mitch’s childlike inability to focus on multiple tasks on an empty stomach meant any sting was taken out of Phil’s upcoming zing. “And it occurs to me that instead of going on this questionable quest, you could’ve just gone to the Union to get a new Tiger Card.” Spectacularly – even if it was a commonplace occurrence – Mitch had not heard a single word Phil said despite not having any other thoughts running through his mind.
“What?” Mitch asked rhetorically knowing that Phil had said something, but unsure of what it was. “Wait,” Mitch paused and pointed off into the distance, “Is that a mirage? Or did we just find a house made of candy?” Wasting no time on Phil’s response, Mitch ran towards the house that had previously only existed in his dreams and a German folktale. Milliseconds after Mitch had taken off, Phil discerned that, as ridiculous as this expedition may have been, there was certainly no reason not to take advantage of a real house made of candy. And just like that Phil tagged along in the great race for cavities. Each step closer to the mythical mansion showed a larger building than previously assumed. As Mitch made 100% of the journey with Phil just at 90% of the way there, they each realized that this candy castle was far too big for any ordinary humans to inhabit. However, Mitch’s short stature meant that he was used to walking into buildings that he deemed to be the residence of giants. So, he took no time worrying about who might reside here as he walked through the graham cracker doggy door while snapping off a piece and eating it. Upon passing the portal to this pastry palace his pupils popped. Astounded at how something could actually exist, Mitchel didn’t know where to begin. Fortunately for him, it was that same moment that 90% of Phil crossed the threshold of the real life Candyland entrance.
“Mitch, I wouldn’t eat too much of this place if I were you,” Phil spoke cautiously but firmly. “I think I know why this place is so giant.”
“Phil, 90% of the time you’re right, but I’m literally holding an M&M doorknob that opens a drawer filled with more candy,” Mitch spoke with his mouthful, “I think we were meant to eat everything in here.” Mitch was hardly capable of saying all of those words due to the overflow of sweets he had jammed in his mouth. Luckily, Phil had spent enough time with the little guy to know what he meant.
“Your business major breakfast of champions aside, I’m 90% certain I saw the footprint of a dragon…” Phil was cutoff 90% of the way through his sentence by the sound of the backdoor opening. Exchanging panicking looks, Mitch and Phil hid as quickly as they could behind the fruit roll-up curtains. Though not completely out of sight due to the translucent nature of the rather overrated candy, they hoped that they would go unnoticed as they watched a two-headed dragon walk into the room bickering with itself.
“Look, Alison, I’m not saying it’s your fault. What I am saying is that the left side of the cake looked like it had just had a nightmare and was too scared to come from out of the covers,” the right head holla’d.
“And all I’m saying, Luke, is that you need to take some responsibility and realize that not everything is actually split into two halves just because we are,” the left head holla’d back. “And it’s kind of obnoxious that you forget that anytime something goes wrong.”
“I feel like these two must be getting pretty tired of being around each other so much,” Phil whispered to where he thought Mitch was only to find that he had wandered off. “Mitch!” Phil whispered as loud as he could, “Mitch, get back here!” But Mitchel’s business major brain was in a trance as he head for an oven made out of more candy and baked bread. Phil left with no other options decided to chase after him in an attempt to stop him from getting the attention of the dragon that already appeared in a bad mood. Alas, Mitch spun the lollipop knob right off just as Phil was 90% of the way there. Instantly they both decided that an oven made of candy and turned on full blast with no way of being shut off was a recipe for disaster and they bolted for the door with no regard for the dragon.
“Whoa, who are those two?” Luke shouted.
“I don’t know. But doesn’t it look like the left side is just a little off?” Alison said with a smirk.
“Well, that’s just immature,” Luke retorted while noticing an increasing amount of smoke above them. “Did they turn on the oven?!” Looking over their shoulders and seeing their masterpiece of a house going up in flames they immediately flew out the front door and began a search for Mitch and Phil. Their constant old married couple brand of squabbling prevented them from conducting a proper search for the hooligans that had burned down their home.
“I don’t think they see us,” Phil said quietly as Alison and Luke flew overhead. All the while they appeared to be breathing fire, however, it was unclear if that was because of their argument or their heated search. “We had better keep moving before they circle back and take a closer look at this area,” Phil informed the child to his right who was still licking his fingers. So, they continued forward and stayed low to the ground hoping to give Alison and Luke no hopes of finding them. And after another half a mile of walking, Mitch was ready to nap. Phil kept him pressing on as best as he could when suddenly he noticed a large body of water up ahead. And as they got closer Phil noticed that there was a boat there as well. “Well, what do you think, Mitch? Should we get on that boat and hope it takes us in the direction of Queen Britt?” Phil pondered aloud not really expecting a response from the kid he had practically been dragging along.
“Dragons are afraid of water, Phil. Let’s take that boat!” Mitch said enthusiastically. Mitch now took the lead as they crept closer to the ship leaving Phil to contemplate the ridiculous nature of Mitch’s comment. And as he was 90% of the way through turning his thought into speech, they each noticed that Alison and Luke were flying just overhead.
“Do you still believe that dragons are afraid of water?” Phil remarked. His captious nature was likely due to the fact that he could only obtain a 90% on his sociology quiz unlike his on-time classmates that received 100% grades.
“Timeout,” Mitch said while motioning for a timeout, “What I see is a dragon that’s in the air avoiding the water, and what I hear is a dragon more focused on arguing with itself than finding us. If we run for it, then nothing could possibly go wrong.”
“No part of that made sense, but I don’t suppose there are really any other viable options at this moment,” Phil said sounding very sad to have to agree with Mitch. Wasting no time, the two took off in a bee line for the boat. Alison and Luke took notice and started to head directly for them. Mitch and Phil were prepared for the worst, but as they kept running they remained unimpeded. And just as they got onto the boat and begin to push it out to sea they realized why. They could distinctly hear Alison and Luke both still yelling at each other just as vehemently as before.
“I’m not going near that water!” yelled Luke.
“We don’t actually have to touch it. We can fly above it while still attacking them,” Alison responded.
Phil was shocked, and yet relieved that Mitch was right. “How did you know that dragons were afraid of water?” he attempted to ask Mitch, but Mitch was already fast asleep. “And how can you get to sleep so quickly? That means that I’m steering the boat. And I don’t know where we’re going. And now I’m talking to myself,” Phil noted as he head straight towards the setting sun. With the sound of an angry two-headed dragon yelling at itself in the distance Phil did his best to steer their new home towards what he hoped was the correct direction. Mitch and Phil were unaware of what lie ahead, or the fact that they were still being watched. But having escaped disaster twice in the past 24 hours, they seemed content with their current situation of being on a boat in the middle of an ocean. The ocean’s calm bringing them a much needed rest before they continue on their questionable quest.