The Adventures of Naughty Naut (novella)

There was a time when no one on Earth had heard of the man Naughty Naut.  The primitive yet advanced planet of Plinus had been long since forgotten since Walter Jid had discovered it in the 21st century.

It was the middle of the 24th century, and America was now known as the Republic of Ugoff because it was taken over by far-off Luxembourg.  How the names “Luxembourg” and “Ugoff” are connected is probably not an interesting subject towards most Americans and will be skipped.

Not even the man you know as Naughty Naut knew of that name.  He had been humbly christened “Garrison Andrew Matthew Leet,” and spent his days known simply as “Gary.”  He was a fifteen-year old boy with no real self-esteem.  He had no idea that he was the biological descendant to Walter Jid on his mother’s side.  The decades and centuries had gone by pretty fast, you had to admit.

Gary’s parents had abandoned him, so he knew very little of even the name “Leet.”  His parents’ names, Luke and Annie, were all he knew of them.  He had no siblings he knew of.  Gary was instead raised by a distant relative, Bilius Shnackel, who seemed to not be a very good father.  He was decent at one thing, his strange job.  Nobody really knew what “Uncle” Bilius did.  Gary wasn’t even sure how he was related to Bilius Schnackel.

Gary had no real friends at the school he attended, Zed Thanatos High School (or ZTHS, if you will.)  He was just the quiet kid who sat in the corner in Mr. Rogg’s math class next to Hunter Dorn.  No one noticed him.  Gary found this somewhat annoying.

He had a crush on one girl in his school, Wendy Cronmaker.  Everyone liked Wendy.  Gary and Wendy would never be together.  If they were, it would be a miracle.  Hell, if Gary Leet could get himself to talk to Wendy—that would be a miracle.  But, in the year 2357, nothing had completely changed.

But many things were changing.  For, a neighbor of Gary’s, a certain old coot named Alexandre Zanderson, was an experienced inventor.  He had invented many strange things out of metal.  Therefore, his associates referred to him as Professor Alexander Metalworks, even though he was technically not a professor.  He did not have his doctorate degree, nor did he have much education, like most people at this time.  Even Gary was planning on dropping out of school this year to get a steady job like all of his rivals.

Professor Metalworks was also known as one of the only people in Gary’s neighborhood in Santa Rosa, California, Ugoff (UF) that actually owned a time-traveling machine.  Billionaire Bill Gates’ descendant Waybil Gates invented it back in the year 2184, to win a bet with his “friend” Matt Böno over the color of dinosaurs.  Waybil Gates assumed dinosaurs were brown, while Matt thought they had to be green.  It turned out they were actually purple, like the long-forgotten infamous preschool icon, “Barney.”

“Garrison Leet!” called Professor Metalworks.  “I just traveled to the 1900’s and created a planet entirely out of metal!  It took me days but I finally did it!  It’s not completely finished, though.  It needs android citizens.”
“What the hell?” Gary asked.  “Professor, that sounds drooblish.”  At this time, “drooblish” was a slang term meaning “crazy, bizarre, twisted, and awesome.”  Gary could not believe that even in the 24th ½ century, ordinary humans could create planets in a matter of days.  It usually took a few months.

“I think my robo-planet is in the present as well,” Alexander boomed.  “I’m not positive—but it would make since.  If I had a spacecraft, I would definitely check.”  Only the very rich and privileged (the people President Picard really cared about) were able to purchase spacecrafts and use them.  The best technology was only open to the wealthy, who were usually not the ones who deserved the best technology.

“Garrison Leet, I’d like you to leave.  Please.  It’s personal.”  With that, Gary was expelled from Professor Metalworks’ home, and wandered aimlessly along the neighborhood.   He thought of his crush, Wendy Cronmaker.  She was a brown-haired girl with brown eyes, a usual combination, but still pretty.  She barely knew he existed.  He knew she existed because everyone that knew he existed knew her.  She was a couple months older than he was.  His birthday was in August, and hers was in June.  Summer birthdays were peaceful and thankfully not celebrated in school.

Uncle Bilius would be waiting for Gary when he came home.  He unlocked the door with the silver key.  Gary did not see his guardian, but instead saw an ancient old-timer, even older than his friend Alexander, grinning right at him.

“Lotto awaits you,” laughed the man.

“How the hell did you get into my house!?” yelled Gary at the old man.

“I’m not really here,” laughed the oldster.  “And you should think more of your future.  After you drop out of high school, what will happen?”

“Who exactly are you?” asked Gary.

“I am the omnipotent, omniscient One.  And if I am correct, you are Garrison Andrew Matthew Leet, soon to be known to everyone as ‘Naughty Naut.’ Mm-hmm.  You are the next man of great Naught, the Naughty Naut, the Ancient Astronaut.  And I am not the chief player in your making.  There are others, I am just here to teach.  There is your friend Alexandre Zanderson, and your girlfriend, Wendy Cronmaker.  She is the second Chosen One.  You are the only Chosen descendants of the great Walter Jid.  It is a wonder that you came to live two miles apart.  Alexander Metalworks will help you on your quest to discover the Unknown.

“Our evil host, Lotto the Paranoid, wants to kill us all.  He has started his own clan of monsters.  Those Goblins, they are.  You are a powerful and yet weak lad.  Your mission starts now.  I will give you a sword.  Good day, sir.”

And with that, the old man’s image vanished, never giving Gary a sword.  It seemed to be a hologram sent from who-knows-where.  Yet it could talk to its subjects.  What a strange world, thought Gary.  Holograms were usually noncommunicable things.

Gary thought for a while of the name “Lotto the Paranoid” and his “Goblins.”  He wondered if there would be other monsters as well.  Also, his “girlfriend” Wendy Cronmaker seemed to be closer into his life.  He was ready to stop living as Gary Leet and now as “Naughty Naut.”

*                                  *                                  *

Gary started heading towards Alexander Metalworks’ home.  Gary did look incredibly similar to Walter Jid, but Jid’s name had faded out over the centuries.  They had the same dark brown hair and the same geeky smile.  What they did not share were the eyes.  Gary’s eyes were green and Walter’s eyes were dark blue.  However, no two relatives (that aren’t identical twins) look completely alike.

When Gary reached the home of his role model, he knocked on the steel door three times.  Metalworks either had a lot of money for his neighborhood, or he somehow obtained all the precious (and non-precious) metals.

The door was answered by one of the last people Gary expected to see.  It was Wendy Cronmaker.  What a surprise.  Wendy was looking pretty as always, with her long brown hair in a ponytail.  Gary found it hard to think of her as his cousin as he had liked her since fifth grade.

Alexander Metalworks was in his living room.  He was looking tired, as his beard was unshaven and his eyes had huge bags under them.  His expression was serious.  His living room was like the rest of his house in that it was completely made of metal, except for the teleset, which was high-tech anyway in that it got cable, satellite, and all 5,932 channels.  For a middle-aged man, Metalworks must have found an iron couch somewhat uncomfortable.

Wendy said hello to Gary for the first time in his life.  Gary shyly stuttered hello back.  Gary cursed himself for his stupidity—he should have been more outgoing.  Gary was surprised when he saw that two of his classmates were with Metalworks.  They were Wendy’s boyfriend, Moe Binns and Moe’s best friend, Nick Goldman.  They were junior varsity frumball players at Zed Thanatos High School, and not the kind of kids Gary associated with.  Frumball was an insanely popular cross between basketball and baseball.  There were basically two “jock” sports, football and frumball.

Moe Binns was a tall boy who had long black hair and brown eyes.  He had a goatee and wore a shirt advertising the new sturge band, Larenks.  He told extremely funny jokes, and liked to draw cool pictures.  It was obvious why Wendy could like him over a loser like Gary.  Nick Goldman was also tall, but had a red afro and blue eyes.  He had glasses, which was unusual for jocks.  Nick told good jokes, but they weren’t as funny as Moe’s.  The more serious of the two, he focused more on frumball.   He also was the champion (and an addict) at video games such as “Kill Thrill” and “Tuna Driver.”

“Hey, it’s Gary Leet!” laughed Moe.

“Naughty Naut,” corrected Alexander Metalworks.  “You four all know why you are here.  Lotto the Paranoid of the Goozack Damacy is a frightening figure towards all of Goozack, but no Earthlings seem to be aware.  You may be young, but you’re not all too young to be heroes, I hope.  Oh, and we might need to visit some other planets.  One of them, Pemdas, formerly known as Plinus, contains Lotto’s nemesis, King Enisoc the Furcifer, and he will know exactly how to defeat Lotto.
“And as Our Beloved Host may have told you all, you will most likely get a new name.  Garrison Leet, you are Naughty Naut, right?”  Gary nodded.  He will from now on be known as Naughty Naut.  “And I forgot the rest of you don’t know your names.  Wendra Cronmaker, you will simply be Cronmaker.  Moseph Binns, you will just be Moe Binns, because it’s a cool name.  Nickolas Goldman, you will be—Bobert.”

“Bobert!” whined Goldman.  “Why can’t I be something catchier, like Dib Lionel?”

“You can’t because Dib Lionel’s the protagonist of ‘Meteor Mess 2.’  You all ready?  Let’s quit being schoolchildren and become the future of Goozack, Plinus, Rect, Squeer, Hyrule, Bernum, Fractalus, and my own planet, Citobor.”

“What about Earth?” asked Moe, who bore a puzzled look on his handsome face.  “We’ll be famous in the only living planet in our solar system, right?”

“There isn’t natural life on Bernum and obviously Citobor, but I don’t think the population of Earth is ready for four fifteen-year old conquerors.  So, Naughty Naut, Cronmaker, Moe Binns, Bobert, get ready for the time of your lives!”  Alexander Metalworks left for Citobor, the only planet that was off-limits for the kids.

*                                  *                                  *

Our three heroes and one heroine were then taken into Bobert’s family’s spacecraft, as Bobert’s dad was one of the town’s most successful lawyers and could afford many luxurious accessories.  Moe and Bobert both lived in Santa Rosa’s country club, while Cronmaker lived in a medium-sized light-blue house close to the ever-popular downtown.  Cronmaker drove the spacecraft, though she was only fifteen years old, the new driving age, was in fact, fourteen.  A lot had changed since 2005.

“OK, where should we go first?” asked Cronmaker in her voice that made both Naughty Naut and Moe’s crotches go uneasy.  Her voice also sounded confused.  Bobert did not have a crush on her as he had a girlfriend back in Santa Rosa named Kelly whom he would never see again.

“Um…Fractalus sounds interesting.  Any idea how to get there from space?” commented Naughty Naut.

“Yes,” Cronmaker stated hesitantly, looking at the detailed map of the galaxy.  “I actually don’t know.  Gary, as you’re smarter than me, would you mind looking?”

“Sure,” Naughty muttered.  He took a look at the map for himself.  He saw several planets, with strange names such as “Oobleck.”  He was surprised to see that “Hell” was actually a planet in the Snickers galaxy, but as his Uncle Bilius was a religious Catholic, he wasn’t excited to check what it was like there.  He would never see Uncle Bilius or any of his adoptive family again.  However, Gary Leet was the adopted nephew of Bilius Schnackel, and Naughty Naut was not.

“So, Wendy, what’s your family like?” asked Naughty, after thinking about his own “dad.”  Cronmaker gave Naughty a disgruntled frown.

“Yeah, they’re alright,” she murmured.  As her parents were actually divorced and hated each other, Naughty Naut wondered if it would be better not to ask anything about her family.  However, he still did.

“So, are you related to Walter Jid on your mom’s side or your dad’s side?”

“I’m related to Jid on my mom’s side.  My dad’s side is practically just poor white trash.  While Cronmaker is a nice-sounding name, that side has some infamous history.”

“Would you happen to be related to the Seattle thug Kenny Cronmaker?” asked Naughty.

“Leave me alone, I’m shook up,” Cronmaker snapped at the too-curious Naughty Naut.  “Now, how do we get to Fractalus?”
“It’s the seventh planet on the right,” explained Naughty.  After passing four small planets such as Yatta and Numa, the spacecraft started going at a slower pace.
“Dude, what the hell is going wrong with our ship, Nick?” Moe cursed his best friend, pointing his long finger in Bobert’s face.

“I dunno.  Dad rarely uses it, as he’s a lawyer, not an astronaut.  My dad uses his Hefty Hummer instead.”

“Yeah, I wish I had a spacecraft.  Dad may be a scientist, but he’s too cheap to buy one.  He’s such a Scrooge sometimes…” Moe groaned.

“What the hell’s a Scrooge?” asked Bobert.  Moe told him it had to do with Christmas, back when Christmas was a holiday.  The government had banned the celebration of all religious holidays from taking place, except for St. Patrick’s Day, either because the current President was an Irishman or because St. Patrick’s Day isn’t really a religious holiday in the Republic of Ugoff.

Just then, the spacecraft started to fall and the controls were of no use.  The four teenagers found themselves in an entire black.  Nothing could be seen or heard for a long time.

*                                              *                                  *

“Are we dead?” asked Naughty Naut absent-mindedly, breaking the silence.

“I dunno,” coughed Cronmaker.  “This is probably all just a dream.  I mean, I’ve met Metalworks on rare occasions, and though he seemed crazy, I don’t think he would be crazy enough to want us to defeat a distant planet’s leader.  Lotto, is that his name?”

“Silence!” shouted a nasal voice abruptly.  “Who dares to name the Ruler of Goozack itself?  Show your worthiness!”

“Um…in pitch dark, there isn’t much to show,” Moe said sarcastically, snickering to himself.

“Ah, so you are a cynic.  We of the cavern Rect do not find humor in cynicism.  Eh, Steve?  We the Rect Tangles are not in the mood.”

“You’re called the Rectangles?  That’s pretty retarded,” Moe laughed.

“Um…Moe, after all I’ve seen in video games, you should shut up now,” cowered Bobert.

“I am Rocky Ruction,” continued the nasal voice.  “Give us a reason to let you go and I will.”

“We were sent here by Alexander Metalworks,” Moe told Rocky Ruction.  Even he was afraid that the primitive Rect Tangles were against Metalworks.

“I understand,” Rocky Ruction said, “he wants to defeat Lotto the Paranoid.  We are slaves to Lotto.  We will send you to Fractalus.  That’s where you were headed, eh?”

“Thanks, Rocky Ruction!” giggled Cronmaker.

“Now, Earth children, close your eyes put the setting of Fractalus in your mind…”  No one told Rocky Ruction that they had no idea what the hell Fractalus looked like.

Naughty Naut was the first to see anything.  What he saw was a bit of a wasteland.  He saw a red desert, much like Mars.  There was garbage everywhere, from newspapers written in an alien language to partially-eaten rotten fruit.  A small boy that looked completely human rushed towards him.  He wore a beaten-up baseball cap and had a mullet hairstyle.

“Hey, kid!” Moe snickered.  “Do you speak English?  Or pabla Espanol?

“I speak English,” the boy said in a Brooklyn accent.  “The name’s Headless—Francis Headless.”

“Are you from Fractalus?” asked a puzzled Cronmaker.  “You seem like an Earthling to me.”

“No, I’m not from Earth, you silly girl.  I was born on Fractalus.  I’m an orphan, and I don’t know how I got here.”  Francis paused.  “But don’t feel any sympathy for me.  I’ve had my sentence.  What’s your name anyway?” he asked Naughty Naut.

“I’m Gary Leet but that’s just my Earth name.  Technically, my name is Naughty Naut,” he said.

“Gary Leet!  I’ll have to remember that.  You must be thirsty.  Want some whiskey?”  Though Naughty Naut was only fifteen and the drinking age had risen to twenty-six, he gladly thanked the boy and took a glass of a brown liquid he assumed was whiskey.  He drank it up, and it tasted nothing like whiskey, which his Uncle Bilius had let him have a sip of at the age of twelve.  He was in a daze.

Naughty Naut, Cronmaker, Bobert, and Moe Binns left the orphan boy to Bobert’s ship.  They never did visit Fractalus again.  They didn’t desire to visit Rect again either, after their experience with the annoying Rocky Ruction.

GOOZACK…

            Francis Headless returned to his beloved homeland, Goozack.  His master, Lotto the Paranoid, was sitting on his golden throne under the blood-red sky.  Lotto was a thin man with dark hair and pale skin.  He bore resemblance to Count Dracula, whom had never been heard of on the planet of Goozack.  Lotto had been ruling Goozack for twenty-eight years, and wasn’t scheduled to retire for another thousand years.  His unattractive wife, Lottorina the Disorganized, sat next to him. She looked a lot of him due to the fact that she was also his sister.

“Massster, I got Naughty Naut drunk!  Now he’ll never stop Goozack!” laughed Francis Headless to his master and mistress.

“Indeed,” muttered Lotto in his baritone voice.  He didn’t trust Headless, or any of his advisors.  “Where are the twerps headed now?”

“Um…Pemdas,” replied Francis Headless, looking at his psychic watch.

*                                              *                                  *

The four teenagers finally arrived at what had to be Plinus AKA Pemdas.  Moe Binns came out, then Naughty Naut, then Bobert, who had to admit; the planet looked like the atmosphere in “Zero Wing,” and lastly Cronmaker.

As Cronmaker exited Bobert’s wealthy father’s spacecraft, an aged alien came up to her.  It was extremely strange looking and blue.  For a better description of the Plinusians, turn to the ninth “Walter Jid” story, because I’m too lazy to describe them.

“Huzzah!” sounded the Plinusian in a toadlike squawk.  “We knew that Earth wouldn’t forget about us forever!”

“Who exactly are you?” asked Naughty.  He wanted to ask “what exactly are you?” but thought that would sound rude.  The Plinusian was not at all offended.

“My name is Calculo din Enis.  I am both brother and slime-brother to His Majesty Enisoc the Furcifer.”

Another Plinusian limped up next to Calculo.  This was definitely Enisoc, as he was dressed in a yellow robe made of unknown fabric.  His robe once belonged to the evil King Lamiced, but that was a long time ago.

“You resemble Walter Jid,” realized Enisoc.  “Our great-grandfather, Etarip, a former king of Plinus himself, met Jid as a boy.”

“I’m somehow related to him,” Naughty Naut told the Plinusians as he took a swig of whiskey.  He had just realized that he might have become an alcoholic, but he wasn’t drunk yet for some reason.

“Walter had only one son,” Calculo told Naughty.  “His name was John Jid, named after his grandfather, Johnny Lurg.”
“If you look back far enough on your online family tree, you won’t see Walter Jid as John Jid’s father.  Instead, you’ll see his brother, Joey,” Enisoc continued.

“Why the hey did you tell them that?” wondered Calculo.  “It’s not like he’ll ever look at his family tree ever again…”

“So how do we defeat this guy Lotto?” asked Bobert, ready to command and conquer.  Moe Binns was not ready, as he had some stupid cartoon on his mind.  He also had a strong urge to draw something neat.

“Well, Lotto is the only citizen of Goozack that does not have any realization that his wife Lottorina is cheating on him with his trusted pal, Sid.  If Lotto finally figures out that his beloved wife only loves him for his money, and that she loves another man more, he’ll go psycho,” Calculo told them.

“Hey, I’m supposed to tell them that,” whined King Enisoc.

All of a sudden, a man that was not a Plinusian appeared.  “He is Lotto!” yelled three insane Plinusians simultaneously.  One of them took a farfetched-looking dagger and killed the man.

“This isn’t Lotto,” remarked Enisoc to the stupid Plinusians.  “This isn’t even an impostor.  You fools killed an innocent resident of Goozack.  You idiots are so racist, that you think all residents of Goozack are Lotto.  This man happens to be Vandick—a refugee from Goozack whom Lotto tried to kill for a long time.  Now he finds himself dead, but not because of Lotto, but because of you!”

                        *                                                          *                                              *
Well, the gang traded Bobert’s spacecraft, which was starting to move slowly, for Plinus’ ancient POF spacecraft, once piloted by well-known Plinusian pilots such as Citem and Dexim.  Calculo and Enisoc flew the teens throughout the galaxy to Goozack.

“Cheers!” shouted King Enisoc as the four left.

“Remember the secret!” whispered Calculo.

The gang walked down the surface of Goozack, which was exactly like Fractalus except green and not trash-laden.  There were skyscrapers everywhere.  They were labeled things like “YUG” and “MACNAT.”

“Those Plinusians were nice guys, huh, Moe?” Cronmaker asked her boyfriend.

“Yeah,” Naughty Naut answered absent-mindedly.  Though Cronmaker was his sixth cousin, Naughty’s crush was not ended.  He realized again that he was inattentively drinking Francis’ whiskey.  He was drunk.  He knew it.  He was starting to forget his name.  Naughty woozily passed out.

“Oh my fucking God—Naughty’s dead!” shrieked Cronmaker.  She, after all, cared for Naughty much more than she was willing to show.

“No, he’s probably just sleeping, lousy bastard,” Moe muttered.  He didn’t think much of Naughty Naut, though he would one day write of Walter Jid’s adventures.

The gang dragged Naughty to a local doctor, one Dr. Guyfather.  Dr. Guyfather was a caring middle-aged man.  After a while of waiting, Dr. Guyfather came out with Naughty and said:

“Your friend’s alive.  He was just very intoxicated.  What has he been drinking?”

“Whiskey,” answered Bobert.

“This is no whiskey!  This is Skuzz, a very dangerous alcoholic beverage.  He will be OK, but he will be an alcoholic for life,” admitted Dr. Guyfather.  “Who gave this boy Skuzz?”
“Some poor orphan on Fractalus called Francis Headless,” responded Cronmaker.

“Francis Headless is Lotto’s most faithful apprentice.  Surely you didn’t know that?” asked Guyfather.

“No, he seemed nice to us,” said Cronmaker.

“Damn.  Don’t trust everyone from their first impression.”

*                                              *                                              *

After Naughty Naut awoke, the kids headed toward Azmogis Cliff where Lotto’s throne room was.  The castle consisted only of the throne room and the crown jewels.

“Puny humans!” screamed the thin, pale man that was Lotto the Paranoid.  His wife, Lottorina the Disorganized, spat at their feet.

“Well, what are you?” wondered Moe Binns, for after all, Lotto appeared to be a human himself.   Francis Headless leaped into Moe’s face.  “How dare you talk back to His Majesty?”  He was not sporting his usual hat, but he hadn’t cut off his mullet.

“LOTTO’S WIFE IS CHEATING ON HIM!!!” screamed Moe Binns, but at that exact moment, Francis lunged at Bobert, who fell backwards and cracked his skull, dead.

“What’s this, Lottorina?” Lotto abruptly asked his sister.  His usually pale face was turning beet red, and his white eyes were turning yellow.

“I don’t know what they’re talking about,” Lottorina lied to her husband.  “I really don’t.  Honestly, this is insane.  Off with their heads!”

“No, I will not have them executed just yet,” snapped Lotto.  “I knew it, Lottorina, I saw you kissing that scum Sid the Bipolar.  You always liked him, even in high school.  You and he were voted Prom King and Queen, and everyone thought I was crazy because I loved my own sister.  Horrible, just horrible.”

Francis Headless started crying at his master’s feet.  “Oh, Lotto, how can you go through all these scandals?  I understand!  Why you, why you…you great king, you?”

Lotto then suffered a nervous breakdown and was sent to a mental institution on Goozack.  At this point, Goozack’s monarchy became obsolete and after a series of debates, they settled for a nice government like Canada.

*                                                          *                                  *

When the gang finally settled on Earth, they realized this was not the familiar Earth they searched for.  It turned out that Halley’s Comet had hit Earth and there were no survivors.  Because they were traveling at the speed of light, they had skipped millions of valuable years.  So, instead, they headed for Citobor, which was off-limits in the past, but not anymore.

Citobor was completely made out of metal, just like Alexander Metalworks’ abode.  Naughty Naut doubted Metalworks was still alive, though.  After seeing some strange devices such as a machine that could turn anyone into a hamster, Naughty Naut, Moe Binns, and Cronmaker finally found a time machine and changed the time from 8,487,529,121 A.D. to the 24th ½ century.

“Are we there?” Cronmaker asked her sixth cousin and boyfriend.

“Leave my laboratory alone, trespassers!” boomed Alexander Metalworks.  “Nevermind, it’s just the Chosen Ones.  How’d your mission go?”

“Pretty cool, we saw Rect, Fractalus, Plinus, and Goozack,” answered Moe Binns.

“We defeated Lotto the Paranoid with help from the Plinusians,” answered Cronmaker.

“We would have been done quicker, but I became an alcoholic on the way,” groaned Naughty Naut, clutching a can of Budweiser.  “But don’t worry, I’m safe.  Sadly, we lost Nick Goldman on the way.”
“Bobert?” asked Professor Alexander Metalworks.  “But you still managed to defeat Lotto!  He must not be a Chosen One after all.”

“I don’t think there were any Chosen Ones,” said Naughty Naut.  “Everyone has potential in them; it just matters how they use it.”

“Um…what about the prophecy and God’s hologram?” asked Metalworks.

“I don’t think that was God,” Cronmaker told the scientist.  “I know that God is everywhere and doesn’t usually take human form.  So who was it?”

“I’m not allowed to tell you.  But, Naughty Naut, we located your parents!”  He was absolutely right.   A tall, dark-haired woman with blue eyes and a purple shirt made her way towards Naughty.  With her was a stocky red-haired man wearing a suit.  They were Annie and Luke Leet, Naughty’s long-lost parents!  Suddenly, Naughty Naut felt like a kid again.

“Does this mean that I don’t have to live with Uncle Bilius anymore?” Naughty asked his parents.

“No, honey,” Mrs. Leet told her son.  “We’d never choose Bilius Schnackel to adopt you.  He was a colleague of your dad, and not a pleasant man at all.”

“But you do have to go back to school, whether you like it or not, Mr. Naut,” chuckled Mr. Leet.  “While the school drop-out rate is incredibly high, you deserve the education.  The same with Miss Cronmaker and Mr. Binns here.”

“Mom, Dad, why the hell did you abandon me?” asked Naughty Naut.

“We never wanted to abandon you.  However, Lotto the Paranoid kidnapped us while you were a baby, and after you defeated him, we were free.  Two Plinusian brothers helped us find our way home.”

“Those were Enisoc and Calculo!  They helped us quite a bit!” Cronmaker told them.  “Are my parents looking for me?”

“Yes,” chuckled Alexander Metalworks, “but don’t worry, I’ve told them what’s going on.  They don’t believe me, but that’s life in the big city.”

“Gary, Wendy, sorry I’ve been such a jerk,” Moe Binns told his fellow adventurers.  “I was thinking about it, and jokes and cartoons are sort of boring me.  I know what I’ll do!  I’ll become a writer!”

“Professor, there is one thing I don’t understand.  What exactly were Lotto’s ‘Goblins?’  Nothing we met in Goozack resembled a goblin,” said Naughty Naut.

“Plot holes, Naughty, plot holes,” replied Alexander Metalworks, confusing everyone but himself.

*                                              *                                  *

Moe Binns actually did become a writer, as he wrote all 22 Walter Jid stories, and the story you are reading now.  He now resides in 2006, where he is known to many by another name.  He would be surprised if you could guess it correctly.

Cronmaker married Moe Binns, but kept her last name since she didn’t want to be known as “Binns” for the rest of her life.  She is keeping a job in a large factory making kid’s toys, such as plastic crowns.  Coincidentally, the name “Cronmaker” is German for “crown-maker.”

Naughty Naut eventually got fed up of his unrequited love and traveled into the past where he met his ancestors Walter Jid and Johnny Lurg.  The first person he met was a retired crook named Tom Taggart, whom he instantly became friends with.  He was obviously never able to control his drinking habits.

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