Author's Note:This was actually my first Fanfiction entry made in the last week of January 2014. However, for accessibility reasons, to ease viewers in I've decided to put this on the second short story of this collection. This is also a revised edition of that entry.
There are two references to a famous scene in this short story. I'm giving you a challenge- can you spot it here?
Onwards to the premiere! Any constructive reviews and/or praise are greatly appreciated. Thank you very much and all the best!
Want a Chocolate?
At the end of the week Team Sonic (Sonic, Tails and Knuckles), Amy and Big would come for a sleepover and relax around a television watching a program or movie of their choosing in Sonic's or his friends' cosy home. Yet on this very occasion Chip had been invited along to chip in along for the night. On that night he brought a lot of candy, sweets and confectionary of all kinds in a sack. Little did Team Sonic, Big and Amy knew that such treats would bring unexpected results…
It was 7:30pm at Sonic's house when Team Sonic, Amy, Big and Chips were sitting on the couch watching the grand final of Mobius My Kitchen Rules on TVwith Cream and Marine being the contestants.
"Come on Cream and Marine!" Amy and Big cheered. Out of all the people on the coach Amy and Big were the most excited. Sonic, Tails and Knuckles were not as huge excitable fans of the show as Amy and Big. Nonetheless, Team Sonic still enjoyed food anyway and what's better than cheering on your mates who're competing on TV? If a TV show had cooking that tasted great so much the better. Team Sonic were just as happy as Amy and Big. Chip on the other hand was the more quiet type. Although he didn't mind Team Sonic's jubilation, he felt annoyed because he couldn't stand the excess cheering from Amy and Big. Chip pulled out a liquorice stick.
"Want some liquorice?" he asked Amy innocently.
"No" Amy responded softly.
Chip tried again, pulling out a lemon sherbet.
"Want some sherbet?" he asked Amy temptingly.
"Look Chip, I'm trying to watch a show with my mates. How about you try your own treats for a change! No." Amy said firmly. She continued cheering. This time Amy and Big were cheering twice as loud.
Strangely, nobody else except Big- who was gasping and staring at the pair- had noticed the slowly rising feud. A few minutes later Amy sneaked her hand to her Piko-Piko Hammer that was right behind the couch. Her cheeks became a crimson red burning with anger. She slowly raised her hammer with both hands about to hit Chip on the head…
"Want a chocolate?" Chip sweetly questioned Amy. Chip held out a bar of Cadbury milk chocolate just under Amy's nose.
"Oh…" Amy's cheeks slowly became skin coloured as the anger faded from her cheeks, "Yes please." She grabbed the chocolate and timidly took a nibble of it. Smiling due to the milky chocolate taste, she started wolfing it down. In a matter of seconds she had become suddenly fixated on the flavour. Ten minutes later she finished it. This time she had started cheering again only two-thirds loud the previous volume. Chip who had observed the desirable effect, offered a Cadbury dark chocolate bar. Unlike Amy, Big was extremely slow to anger and would eat anything offered to him provided it was tasty. Big's taste buds was unable to resist and he chomped the offered bar down within a matter of minutes.
One hour later… Team Sonic had slowly turned at least half their attention away from the screen and noticed the behavioural changes of Amy, Big and Chip. Team Sonic was watching two events simultaneously- one in reality TV, the other in real life. By now, Big and Amy had become almost mute and had stuffed themselves with at least four chocolate bars each, clean wrappers scattered about the floor. Every one of those bars offered by Chip! A 10-minute commercial break came giving Amy and Big a chance to get a glass of water each in Sonic's kitchen nearby. After Amy and Big had left Sonic- part anxiously and part amused- questioned Chip, "Let me guess Chip, are you trying to use positive reinforcement to condition my girlfriend and one of my friends?"
Tails and Knuckles eagerly looked at Sonic and Chip.
"Gee you're good!" exclaimed Chip, "Want a chocolate?"
"No!" Sonic shouted, jumping sideways off the couch in fright and landing on the floor back first. Tails and Knuckles burst out laughing out loud, barely able to control themselves. After two minutes of laughing, calming down and Sonic dusting off himself Sonic fell back into the couch, half shocked and half amused.
"Listen Chip, you can't just shape friends like that." Sonic explained, "I understand you don't like all that loud cheering Amy and Big does- right?"
"Even though sometimes I don't want Amy to chase me around or kiss me, I want her to be herself. I don't want you to change that. Please understand?" Sonic said heartedly.
"I guess so. But if we think about it…" Chip started.
"All the world is just a stage ... all the men and women merely players." Knuckles wittingly pointed out.
"Ah Shakespeare. Nice one Knuckles! I can use the principles of the renowned behaviourist psychologist Skinner that are positive reinforcement, positive punishment, negative punishment and negative reinforcement. I can condition a person's behaviour and mould them as I wish. I could stop Amy chasing you. I could stop Amy kissing you, I could stop Amy hammering you…" Chip confidently said.
"Hold on - what does positive punishment, negative punishment and negative reinforcement mean Tails?" Sonic inquired.
"Firstly, positive or negative refers to something being added or taken away respectively, not happy or sad. Secondly, lets look at the terms separately. So far we know what positive reinforcement is when somebody tries to increase the likelihood of a desired behaviour by giving the receiver a reward or encouragement such as what Chip tried to do just now. Punishment on the other hand tries to decrease an undesirable behaviour." Tails taught.
Knuckles fell asleep on the couch, bored. His neck bent backwards over the upper edge of the couch.
"So positive punishment tries to decrease the probability of an undesired behaviour by presenting something unpleasant." Sonic answered in realisation.
"Precisely brother!" Tails replied happily.
"Like this?" Chip chuckled. He was hovering over Knuckles' chin with an aerosol can of chocolate whipped cream.
"Uh-oh…" Sonic and Tails squealed.
Sonic and Tails held their breath. Chip pressed the button.
"Pish!" went the cream in one long burst.
"Oi! What in the name of…?" Knuckles shouted.
He struggled into a normal sitting position, flailing his hands in vain. He looked in a mirror on a coffee table just half a metre away from the couch. Knuckles was shocked. Chocolate whipped cream coated his chin, ears, face and lips.
"Ahhhhhhh!" Knuckles screamed in horror, "I'm going to get nightmares over this!"
"Well on the bright side, at least you look like the next Santa Claus or Yeti- Knucklehead!" Sonic cheekily replied.
Sonic, Tails and Chip roared with laughter at the sight. Knuckles was quite infuriated at first, but after a while he managed a full-hearted giggle. He licked and tasted the cream around his head. He even complimented Chip on the cream's full-bodied taste.
"I don't think I'll be bored after that," Knuckles commented.
"Now we can deduce what the rest of the terms are," Tails continued, "Negative reinforcement tries to decrease the likelihood of something annoying happening by presenting something that takes it away."
"So wouldn't taking a painkiller to counter an aching back be one example of that?" Knuckles questioned as he took a tablet of paracetamol for his backache.
"Yes! So that leaves negative punishment- that's taking away something pleasant to decrease the likelihood of an undesired behaviour," Tails concluded, "for instance as a policeman taking away someone's car keys if a driver went over the speed limit."
During Tails' teachings, Team Sonic had helped themselves to a bar of Cadbury chocolate each- Knuckles having Dark, Tails having White, Sonic with Milk and Chip having White. They all ate their respective bars gleefully commenting on the taste, texture and smell that pleasantly played on their senses.
"Speaking about negative punishment… I just heard Hawk has had his EX Gear confiscated for speeding across Central Square in the CBD." Amy commented. Amy and Big had just returned in time for the verdict for Mobius My Kitchen Rules. Unknown to the rest of the company, Amy and Big had been listening to the entire conversation. They both collapsed onto the couch full of chocolate in their stomachs.
Big boomed, " What a coincidence!"
Team Sonic, Amy and Big all thanked Chip for the chocolate bars. "Your treats have… made this night one to remember- in a nice way we never thought." Sonic said, summarising the overall mood of the sleepover. The overall company – except Chip- started cheering loudly once more. This surprised Chip because his conditioning effects had not lasted as long as he wanted.
Just before the verdict was read, Chip asked all of them, "Want a chocolate?"
Team Sonic, Amy and Big chorused loudly, "No!"
"Aawwww…" Chip responded, disappointed his conditioning attempt had not lasted the entire program. Chip decided to forget about his failed attempt and join in the great company of mates he was with in all its goodness.
The announcing of Cream and Marine being winners Mobius My Kitchen Rules took place another hour later. Team Sonic, Amy, Big and Chip cheered and laughed heartily as the night melted slowly away into the morning. As they enjoyed each other's company, they all had in mind one comment- mateship transcends reason.
Author's Note: Well have you spotted the references? Here are the answers.
The TV show series The Big Bang Theory features a scene that is similar if not almost exactly the same as my short story. Sheldon asks his female companion in this TV Series, "Would you like a chocolate?" Sheldon uses this question that is similar if the not the same query as as Chip asks Amy and Big, "Want a chocolate?" From this point onwards the scene progresses in a similar if not same fashion as my short story. The main differences between this scene and my short story are...
1. Very different characters and setting are used. I used Sonic the Hedgehog characters including Chip, Amy Rose, Big, Tails, Knuckles, Cream, Marine and Sonic the Hedgehog. I set my story in Sonic's house somewhere in Mobius. Meanwhile The Big Bang Theory only uses three characters- Sheldon plus two others that I don't recall. That scene is set in an apartment located in the USA.
2. Sheldon mentions only two principles of the behaviourist psychologist Richard Skinner- positive reinforcement and negative conditioning. I mention all four principles of Richard Skinner- positive reinforcement, negative reinforcement, positive punishment and negative punishment.
For this reason I declare and acknowledge the use of ideas from The Big Bang Theory.
The other answer for the question was the video game Sonic Unleashed. Chip asks multiple characters, "Want a chocolate?" during the videogame.
Update (18/3/2015): Moved this story to place number two switching it with "FUS RO DAH!" and made some corrections here.