Who's ready for the next chapter? There's still at least one more to go after this one, so hope you're ready!
Alonzo was having a bad morning. After a pleasant night with his mate he woke to a complete shift in Munk's attitude towards him, a shift to the point where Alonzo had been certain that someone took Munk's mind and personality out of his body and replaced it with someone else's. How else could he explain the sudden change in behavior?
The alternative was that Munk suddenly decided he didn't want to be around him anymore. That was a thought that Alonzo did not want to dwell on. It would be better to find Munk and talk it out.
Trying to find Munk was surprisingly difficult. He wasn't in any of his usual hangouts, or out along his regular patrols, and even the few spots Alonzo was sure only he and Munk knew about yielded no results. It was as if the silver tabby had simply disappeared.
Luckily another cat that knew Munk well enough was around. Tugger was sitting on top of an old car and looked like he was having a fight with his mane. It also looked like he was losing.
Alonzo took a moment to watch while Tugger muttered quiet curses to himself as he desperately tried to flatten his wildly out of control mane. Several times it wound up in his mouth and in his eyes, promoting him to spin around in a circle in a futile attempt to escape what was directly connected to his own body.
"Blasted- pft- mane!" Tugger finally yelled up at the sky. "How the hell does he manage-"
Alonzo coughed. Tugger took one look at him and quickly turned away. Alonzo didn't give him time to escape.
"Tugger, hold on a moment." Alonzo jumped up next to him on the car. "I want to ask you something."
Tugger nervously cleared his throat. "I'd love to speak with you but I really need to-"
"It'll just take a moment. It's about Munk."
"About me- er, about Munk?" That made Tugger pause.
"Yes. He's been acting really odd today. And I wanted to know if you knew anything about it."
"Odd how?" Tugger narrowed his eyes in suspicion.
Briefly Alonzo was reminded of Munk when he suspected Tugger of doing something he didn't approve of. It would have been amusing to see how similar the brothers acted if Alonzo wasn't trying to have a serious conversation with one of the least serious cats he knew. At least for now Tugger seemed to be completely focused on the conversation.
"This morning Munk practically threw me out of our den and didn't want me to call him by his name." Alonzo waited for the incoming sarcastic response, some silly joke about Munk being too uptight for his own good, but it didn't come.
Instead Tugger's mouth drew down in an uncharacteristic, disapproving frown. "Did he hurt you?"
"No, nothing like that. He didn't attack me-"
"Did he try to do anything… physical with you?" Tugger asked, looking vaguely ill.
"Tugger, no matter how much you pry, I am not discussing that part of my relationship with Munk with you." Alonzo sighed. "But no. I barely even got to hug him before he freaked out."
"Thank the Everlasting Cat." Tugger let out a sigh of relief, moving closer to protectively rub up against Alonzo. "You don't deserve that. Even though he's my brother I would kill him if he tried anything. And I would never try to push you away."
To Alonzo's horror Tugger let out a purr and nuzzled the side of his head, bringing their faces in close to one another.
"Excuse me?" Alonzo couldn't believe what was happening. "Are you seriously trying to kiss me?"
"Well, of cou-" Abruptly Tugger stopped, seeming to realize what he was about to do. "Oh."
"Yeah, 'oh'." Alonzo pulled away from him and jumped down off the car. "Forget it. Clearly whatever's going on with Munk has got nothing on you."
"Wait, Lonz, it's-"
"I'll figure it out myself." Alonzo left before Tugger could reply.
Pouncival was miserable. It had already been shaping up to be a strange day before he realized that he had been shoved into the body of his not-so-secret crush, and now things could only get worse from there. He had parts that weren't his, parts that should have been his but weren't there anymore, and every time he moved he was made firmly aware of his unfortunate situation.
Tumble and Munk-no, wait, it was Tugger in Munk's body- didn't seem to understand his plight. In fact, they seemed much more interested in finding out where Tugger's body had wandered off to. The two had hauled Pounce into Tugger's den to discuss their next course of action.
"So first off, I think it's best if we keep this under the radar for now and try to act natural." Tugger said, automatically trying to fluff his non-existent mane and hitting himself in the face.
"Uh huh." Tumble raised an eyebrow at him.
"I mean it. I don't want to have to explain this to the whole junkyard. Better to pretend that nothing's wrong and try and get it fixed before someone finds out."
"I agree." Pounce crawled up on Tugger's bed and pulled the blankets up to his nose.
Tumble sympathetically patted his brother through the blankets. "Don't worry, Pounce. As much as I would love to tell everyone that you are now the sexiest queen in the junkyard, I respect you too much to infringe on your personal business."
Tugger snorted. "Yeah, right."
"Okay, okay. I really wanna tell the others but no one would believe me." Tumble shrugged.
"Let's hope that you're right." Tugger studied himself in the mirror.
Pounce watched Munkustrap's body preen himself. It was a sight that he never thought he'd see. It was also a sight that he was fine with never seeing again.
"So are you gonna find Misto?" Pounce asked.
"Absolutely. Especially if Munk's already looking for him." Tugger confirmed.
"Where are you gonna start looking?" Tumble asked.
"We are starting our search in the junkyard, obviously, and then, if we can't find him here then we'll go to where his humans live."
"Sounds good- wait, what do you mean by 'we'?" Pounce squawked. "I'm not going back out there!"
"Come on, Pounce, we need your help." Tugger pulled on the blankets.
"No! I don't want to be exposed!"
"You really don't look that bad, Pounce." Tumble said. "I mean, yeah, it's real weird seeing Bomba flail around like you usually do-"
"Excuse me but I do not flail." Pouncival gave his brother a deeply offended look.
"There, that's a face Bomba would make." Tugger said reassuringly. "Just keep making that face and no one will suspect it's you."
"Besides, the sooner we start looking the sooner you can be back in your body." Tumble said brightly.
"Oh, yeah, that's true." Pounce rubbed his nose. "I really want that."
"Hey, speaking of, where is your body?" Tugger asked.
"Well, if Munk and I swapped bodies, then Bomba should be in yours. But where is she? We haven't seen your body anywhere."
Pounce wracked his brain for the answer. He never had to consider where his body might go without him.
"Uh. I dunno where she is."
"Where was the last place you remember being?" Tugger was starting to look impatient, giving up his attempts to fluff up Munk's fur into a pseudo mane.
"Well that's easy." Tumble interjected. "You fell asleep during one of Gus's stories and I carried you back home."
Pounce bit his lip. That was true. Gus was telling them something about his days in the theatre and he could barely keep his eyes open. But that wasn't the last thing he had done that night.
"Pounce?" Tugger leaned over him, looking very intimidating with Munk's face.
"Uh, well… I might've… left to go somewhere else when Tumble was asleep."
"What?" Tumble exclaimed. "Where on earth did you go?"
"It doesn't matter! Bomba's probably walked my body off somewhere else anyways!" Pounce threw the blankets over his head. This was now officially the most embarrassing day of his life.
"Look, Pounce, this is a safe space." Tugger said. "Whatever you were doing last night, no matter how embarrassing, you can tell us."
"Yeah. I promise not to make fun of you." Tumble lifted up the blanket to look at him.
Pounce sighed. "Fine. My life is over anyways. I was with Misto."
"What were the two of you doing out in the middle of the night?" Tugger asked incredulously.
"I don't wanna talk about it. And I swear what we were doing is not important." Pounce insisted. "But last thing I remember was being in the junkyard. I asked Misto to show me some of his magic and then I woke up here. With you. Well, not you. Guess it was Munk. But it was your body."
Tumble looked skeptical but remained silent on the matter for now. Tugger looked thoughtful.
"Let's split up and search the junkyard." Tugger eventually said. "Pounce, you stay around here in case either Munk or Bomba shows up. Tumble, you check around the tire and Jenny's den. If someone spots you just say you're looking for Pounce or Tugger. That way if someone spots either of our bodies they can tell you."
"This is gonna be weird." Tumble sighed. "But okay."
"Excellent. I'll swing through the outskirts of the junkyard and try to stay out of sight. Let's meet back here in a couple of hours." Tugger placed his hands on his hips and gave them both his best winning smile.
Pounce cringed. "Don't do that. It's really weird."
Tugger glanced over in the mirror and immediately dropped the look. "Everlasting Cat, you're right. The sooner I'm back to my normal self the better."
Demeter had spent the better part of the morning looking for Bombalurina before she finally had to call defeat. The red queen was nowhere to be found, at least not in any of her usual spots, and no one else had seen her around. Munk himself was oddly missing, leaving Demeter to head over to the main part of the junkyard to regroup and come up with a new plan. Maybe Munk had managed to slip past her and would be on his usual spot on the tire.
Demeter did not find Munk on the tire, but, rather, found the familiar shape of Alonzo slumped on top. Alonzo was stretched out in the sun, looking oddly dejected and not at all like his usual self. It was enough to make Demeter pause in her wanderings to check it out.
"Hello, Demeter." Alonzo said, flicking an ear in her direction but not moving when she jumped up next to him.
The golden queen gently nuzzled his shoulder before settling down next to him, content to join him in watching over the junkyard.
"Something wrong?" She asked when it was apparent he wasn't going to be forthcoming about what was causing his current mood.
"Do you… do you think Munk's happy with me?" Alonzo asked, expression carefully kept blank.
"What? Why would you ask that? Of course he's happy with you." Demeter rubbed up against his side.
"This morning he pushed me away and yelled at me. Told me not to call him Munk. Practically ran out the door to get away from me."
"Oh, Lonz, I don't think he meant that." Demeter murmured.
"Yeah, well, he certainly acted like it." Alonzo sniffed and pointedly looked across the junkyard. "I even asked Tugger what he thought. You know what he did?"
"I can only imagine."
"He hit on me."
"Are you sure he wasn't just acting like his usual self?" Demeter rubbed Alonzo's back to comfort him.
"He tried to kiss me."
"That must have been surprising."
"That doesn't even begin to describe it. Both of them are acting weird today. Do you think something's going on?"
"I can't imagine what could be wrong. But maybe." Demeter nervously twitched her tail. "You know, I can't find Bomba anywhere. We were supposed to meet up today but she's missing."
Alonzo let out a suspicious hum. "I don't like this. There's too much going on for it to be a coincidence."
Before Demeter could respond a patch tabby kitten burst out of the nearby pile of junk, somersaulting across the ground and bouncing up onto his feet. Tumble dusted himself off, grumbling under his breath, then noticed that he had an audience and froze.
"Something wrong, Tumble?" Alonzo asked.
"Uh, no. Just… going about my usual day. As usual." Tumble said, left eye twitching.
"Where's Pounce?" Demeter asked. "He's usually with you."
"Is he? Er, no, he's not always with me." Tumble was starting to sweat. "He's… ah, you know what, I think there's something I need to be, um, I mean, somewhere I gotta do, er, bye!"
The two cats watched him run off, leaving a cloud of dust in his wake.
"There is definitely something going on." Alonzo said.
"Absolutely." Demeter agreed.
It wasn't long before their attention was captured by another group of kittens. Etcetera, Electra and Jemima made a beeline for the tire, stopping at the base and waving up at Alonzo and Demeter.
"Hi! Have you seen Munk around?" Etcetera asked.
"No, I haven't." Alonzo said, voice tight. "Why?"
"We wanna ask him for advice about Tugger." Electra said.
"Yeah, Tugger seems kinda stressed today. He needs some cheering up." Jemima added.
"Didn't seem stressed to me when I saw him earlier." Alonzo muttered.
"We haven't seen him over here." Demeter cut in before Alonzo could elaborate. "Have you seen Bomba?"
"No, sorry. Is she acting weird too?" Etcetera asked.
"Not that I know of. But there's a lot of suspicious behavior going on today."
"Besides Tugger?" Electra looked concerned.
"Yes. Munk's been acting odd too." That's all Alonzo clearly wanted to say regarding the subject.
"What do you think's going on?" Jemima asked, eyes wide.
"It could always be Macavity." Demeter said. "He's broken every human law, I know he'd be capable of something like this."
"Every human law?" Electra squeaked.
"What else can he do?" Etcetera asked.
"Didn't you hear the song Bomba and I sang at the ball last year?" Demeter felt slightly put out at the thought of no one remembering the song. She and Bomba had worked for a long time on the choreography.
"Um, well, Tugger disappeared during that part and there was a lot going on…." Etcetera at least had the decency to look embarrassed.
"Can you sing it again? It'd really help!" Jemima bounced enthusiastically.
"Okay. But only so you can understand the gravity of the situation." Demeter took up her position in front of her impromptu audience.
"Any time you're ready, Demeter!" Etcetera encouraged her. Electra and Jemima nodded enthusiastically.
"Well, I can do the first part just fine, but it's a little weird to do the rest by myself." Demeter admitted.
"It's fine, I can do it." Alonzo unexpectedly joined her.
"You can?" The three kittens and Demeter chorused.
"Sure. I helped Bomba rehearse a couple times when you and Jenny went on that trip with Skimble." Alonzo shrugged. "She asked so nicely I couldn't refuse."
"Huh." Demeter decided not to argue.
Alonzo really did know the routine. It was odd hearing him sing Bomba's lines and mirror her signature sultry hip swivels, but with his help Demeter was able to properly inform Etcetera and Jemima of Macavity's heinous acts. When the routine was over Etcetera, Electra and Jemima applauded enthusiastically. To everyone's surprise Tumble had appeared sometime during the song and was also clapping along. He stopped guiltily when everyone turned to look at him.
"What? I heard you singing. Thought I'd check it out." Tumble shrugged. "Why're you singing about Macavity?"
"Something funny's going on in the junkyard." Alonzo said, giving Tumble a suspicious look.
"Oh." Tumble tucked his tail around himself. "And what makes you think that?"
"Tugger didn't want to hang out with us. Said he was looking for Misto." Etcetera said. "And he was acting all… not Tugger."
"Yeah. He was standing all wrong. And he almost punched Cettie in the face." Jemima added.
"He what?" Alonzo bristled.
"He didn't punch me!" Etcetera said. "I just scared him! Which is weird since he's always expecting us to be around."
"And then when we told him that Misto went home he looked really upset and left." Electra said.
"Wait, Misto's not here?" Tumble looked unusually alarmed. "But where'd he go?"
"To his human's house." Jemima told him.
"Great!" Tumble shouted, throwing his paws up in the air. "Just great!"
Both Alonzo and Demeter zeroed in on the outburst. The girls giggled between themselves.
"Um." Tumble froze with his paws in the air. "I, er, I mean, that's great for him. To have a home."
"Hm." Alonzo twitched his tail but decided that staring at Tumble would elicit the best response.
Demeter tried a gentler approach. "Tumble, is there something you want to tell us? Something about Misto, maybe? Or Pounce?"
"Ah, nope. Nothing to talk about." Tumble slowly backed away from her.
"Hmm." Alonzo's hum held a hint of a growl.
Demeter continued her advance. "Tumble, you know you can tell us anything. You won't be in trouble."
Tumble tried to move backwards and sideways at the same time, turning himself into a bit of a pretzel.
"Hmmmm." It was amazing how menacingly Alonzo could hum.
Tumble yipped and did a complicated somersault, winding up momentarily in a handstand, then flipped up onto his feet and took off.
"Oh no you don't-" Alonzo took off after him.
Demeter sighed. So much for trying to find Bomba.
Meanwhile, completely oblivious to Tumble's plight, Tugger was busy trying to shove his way into any pile of junk that looked like a place Pouncival's body would be able to fit into. He hated to admit it but Munk was deceptively tall, making it hard to fit in spots that Tugger was sure his original body could manage. At least Munk had incredibly strong leg muscles from crouching all the time.
"Munk!" A familiar voice shouted excitedly.
Tugger barely had time to look up before Jemima shot through his legs. The sudden intrusion was startling enough to knock him off balance, especially when Jemima came back around and hunkered down between his feet as if he were some furry shelter. It would have been endearing if Tugger wasn't busy trying to avoid stepping on her.
"Hey, Jemi, now's really not a good time to talk." Tugger straightened up to try and get his balance.
"Munk, Lonz says- urk!" Jemima squeaked as Tugger accidentally trapped her head in a leg lock.
"Oh! Oh no, hold on-" Tugger did a complicated dance and wound up almost cartwheeling off of her. "I'm sorry, you knocked me off balance, sitting there like that."
"But I always sit here!"
Tugger shook his head. "Well, let's just leave my legs alone for now. Feeling a little unused to them today."
It wasn't entirely a lie. He wasn't used to the legs in this body. While it was tempting to tell Jemima the truth about the body swap it would probably bring more confusion than help. And Tugger was on a mission to fix the problem as soon as possible.
This time it was Etcetera who gunned for the spot between his legs. Tugger didn't have time to make room for her before she crashed headlong into his knees and knocked them both to the ground on top of Jemima. Electra, who was running behind Etcetera, skidded to a halt next to his prone body.
"Argh! Cettie!" Tugger shouted. "What gives?"
"I thought you were ready! You always stand with your legs apart!" Etcetera climbed off of him and helped Jemima to her feet, leaving Tugger lying on the ground.
The pile of junk by his head rustled and Tumble slowly shuffled into view, peering down at him rather guiltily. "Uh, hey, Tu- Munk."
"Tumble." Tugger picked himself off the ground, widening his stance in case any other wayward kittens decided to fight for the apparently coveted spot. Is that why Munk was always standing like that?
"Er, did you happen to find Pounce's bod- Pounce yet?" Tumble whispered.
"No, buddy, not yet. I've been a little busy."
"Munk! Lonz says you've been acting weird today." Etcetera said. "Are you feeling okay?"
Tumble snorted. Tugger half-heartedly slapped him upside the head.
"Hey! That is not a Munk thing to do." Tumble grumbled.
"Believe me, even Munk would've been tempted." Tugger muttered. "Hey, Cettie, what did Lonz say exactly?"
"It wasn't just Lonz, Demeter thinks something's wrong too. She can't find Bomba." Etcetera said. "And Tugger's being all weird. It's a weird day."
"Oh. Well…." Tugger exchanged a look with Tumble before standing a little taller and doing his best impression of his brother's calm yet commanding voice. "Things may be a bit strange today, but it is… uh, it is a full moon after all."
"A full moon?" Jemima tilted her head to one side. Tumble sank his face into his paws.
"Yep. Uh, yes. Yes, it's a full moon tonight. Usually makes things a little weirder. Right, Tumble?" Tugger nudged the kitten in question.
"Oh yeah. Real weird." Tumble muttered.
"You know what's weird?" Alonzo's voice echoed across the junkyard as he appeared from seemingly out of nowhere, slinking down an overturned couch and giving both toms a murderous look.
Tumble shrieked and ran between Tugger's legs, cowering behind him on pure instinct. Etcetera, Electra and Jemima wisely decided to leave the area. Even Tugger felt somewhat intimidated.
"What's weird is how you and your brother have been acting today." Alonzo pointed accusingly at Tugger, who remembered at the last minute that he was supposed to be Munkustrap, and, by association, Alonzo's mate.
Tugger was so not ready to have this conversation. Having a lover's quarrel with anyone wasn't high on his to do list, let alone have one on his brother's behalf with an angry Alonzo. This was a cat who willingly leapt at Macavity after he took out the Jellicle Protector, for Everlasting's sake.
"First you shove me off of you and treat me like I'm nobody after we-" Alonzo paused, glancing at Tumble. "- uh, after last night's activities. And then you tell me not to call you 'Munk'. And after that you run off, leaving me to try and find you-"
"Look, Lonz, I get that you're upset-"
"I am not done." There was a wild look in Alonzo's eyes. Tugger shut up. "Then I go and try to find you and who do I find instead?"
Both Tugger and Tumble wisely remained silent.
"I find your brother." Alonzo hissed. "And for once he was agreeable to talk to. Or so I thought."
"That's rather harsh." Tugger muttered. Tumble sank his claws into his leg to shut him up.
"I asked Tugger if he knew what was going on with you and you know what he did?" Alonzo's tail lashed back and forth in frustration. "He tried to kiss me! And not like some flirty gesture that he usually does, oh no. I can handle that. This was like he thought I was his mate!"
Both Tugger and Tumble remained silent. Really, there wasn't much Tugger could think to say that wouldn't make the situation worse. It was quickly apparent that Alonzo was not done.
"Don't think I don't see you there, Tumble." Alonzo turned on the kitten. "You've been acting suspicious all morning. Not to mention you blatantly lied to my face and ran away when Demeter and I asked what was going on."
Tumble cowered between Tugger's legs. It was too pathetic a sight for Tugger to stand idly by any longer.
"You're right." Tugger said, trying to make Munk's face look calming and sympathetic but probably looking a little more manic than he would have liked. "Tumble knows what's going on with me. I asked him to keep quiet about it."
Alonzo's eye twitched. "I'm only going to ask you once, Munk. What is going on?"
Great. If Tugger didn't navigate this conversation carefully then Munk would soon find himself a bachelor. And then Munk would surely kill him if Alonzo didn't do it first. Tumble dug his claws into Tugger's legs again.
"Ow! Cut it out!" Tugger hissed.
"You gotta tell him the truth. Or Lonz is gonna kill us." Tumble hissed back.
Alonzo crossed his arms and started to tap his foot.
Tugger sighed and rolled his eyes towards the sky. This was only going to get more awkward from here. But maybe, just maybe, if Alonzo believed him, then they could use him to help suss out where either Munk, Misto or Bomba had disappeared to.
"Alright. I'll tell you. But we need to go somewhere more private. Er, honey." Tugger threw out the pet name as a last ditch attempt to pacify him.
Both Alonzo and Tumble stared at him. Maybe that was the wrong nickname Munk used?
"Sorry. Let's just go." Tugger picked Tumble up by his waist and led Alonzo back towards his den. Hopefully Pounce would still be there to back up the unbelievable story he was about to tell.
To say that Munk was not having much luck in his day was an understatement. After his disastrous conversation with Alonzo on the tire he was fairly certain that his mate was going to kill him. That or kill Tugger. Maybe both. A huge part of him wished that he could just sweep Alonzo up into his arms and explain everything that was going on, but he knew that if he tried to do such a thing while still in Tugger's body he would wind up face first in the nearest trash can. Better to find Misto and then try to make amends.
First Munk had combed the junkyard to ensure that Etcetera and the others were telling the truth about Misto not being around. So far as he could tell they were right. His next step was to retrieve whoever was stuck in Bomba's body and head to Misto's house, hopefully running into Tugger and, hopefully, his own body along the way. The absurdity of Munk literally losing himself in the junkyard he knew like the back of his paw was not lost on him.
As he approached Tugger's den he could hear raised voices. Carefully he crept up to the side of the structure to listen.
"You can't possibly expect me to believe this!" Alonzo yelled, sounding painfully frustrated.
"It's true, I don't know how else to explain it." It was disturbing for Munk to hear his own voice being spoken out loud without his permission.
"It's true, Lonz." That was Tumble. "Pounce, tell him."
"I don't wanna tell him." Bomba said sullenly. "You shouldn't've told him anything. You betrayed me."
"Oh come on, I didn't betray you." Tumble's footsteps shuffled towards Bomba's voice. "Come here, Pounce, I'm- hey!"
The unmistakable sounds of a scuffle met his ears. Something smashed on the ground.
"Knock it off!" Munk heard himself yell.
Alonzo yelped painfully. That was enough for Munk. With a burst of speed he ran into Tugger's den, skidding to an immediate halt at the sight before him.
Alonzo was fine, although Tumble was currently perched on his shoulders in an attempt to get away from Bomba, who was being held back by a very familiar silver tabby. Bomba's face was a perfect imitation of Pounce's indignant outrage. One of Tugger's mirrors had been smashed on the floor.
"What in the world is going on?" Munk asked.
"Lemme go, Tugger, I'm gonna thump him." Bomba growled at Munk's body.
Everyone else turned to look at Munk, who was still standing in the doorway.
"Oh, great. Let's just add to the party." Alonzo growled. Tumble slid off Alonzo's head and bounded over to him.
"Please tell me you're Munk." The kitten begged, staring up into Munk's eyes. "We need a voice of reason."
"Excuse me, I think I'm being quite reasonable here." Munk's body said, holding Bomba back with one arm and placing a hand on his hip with the other. It was such a distinctive pose that Munk knew exactly who was in his body.
"Tugger, forgive me for saying so, but we both know that's not true." Munk said.
"Hey, he can tell that I'm me." Tugger said, shooting Alonzo an annoyed look. "Don't know why you're having such a hard time with this."
"Don't look at him that way." Munk stepped closer to Alonzo, who was looking back and forth between them with increasing uncertainty. "At least not with my face."
"Well, then make him believe that you're you and I'm me. We've been running around in circles here and I'm exhausted." Tugger threw Bomba back onto the bed. Bomba hissed and curled up into a ball to sulk. "It's hard enough trying to keep an eye on Tumble and Pounce here."
"So you're Pounce?" Munk asked, raising an eyebrow at Bomba's unusual appearance.
"Hi, Munk." Pounce sighed. "You got me."
"Will someone please, for all that is Everlasting, please tell me what's wrong with everybody." Alonzo said, looking one minute away from storming out and never coming back. "I just want the truth."
"I don't know what exactly has been said, but I'm afraid that Tugger and I have switched bodies." Munk gently explained, careful not to touch Alonzo as he drew closer lest he aggravate his mate even further. "It happened this morning. I woke up in Tugger's body and he woke up in mine. I have a strong inclination that Misto's magic is involved."
"And Pounce and Bomba got swapped too." Tumble added. Alonzo looked over at the red queen, who was nervously fiddling with her tail in a very Pounce- like manner.
"It has to be a joke." Alonzo was stubborn. "A really bad joke."
"It's true." Pounce sighed. "Even I can't make something like this up."
Munk wracked his brain for any way to prove that it really was him. Suddenly he had an idea.
"I can tell you something that only Munk would know." Munk said.
"Oh? And what could that possibly be?" Alonzo frowned.
"I can tell you what we did together last night." Munk tried to sound nonchalant but he could feel his face starting to turn red.
"Excuse me, but don't look at him that way." Tugger said, echoing Munk's previous words. "At least not with my face."
Alonzo narrowed his eyes in disbelief. "Tell me."
Munk leaned forward and whispered in Alonzo's ear. He was definitely blushing now. A faint pink tinge flushed Alonzo's cheeks.
"Alright." Alonzo said, ignoring the mix of curious and mortified looks Tumble, Pounce and Tugger were giving him. "I believe you."
"What in the world did you say to him?" Tugger asked incredulously.
"None of your business." Both Alonzo and Munk said simultaneously.
"So you're really Munk. And you're Tugger." Alonzo looked between them again. "And Bomba's Pounce. So where's Bomba?"
Pounce groaned. "We don't know. And I don't know. And we don't have to know. You know?"
"We'll work on finding her when we find Misto." Tugger said.
"I was about to head out to find him. Electra told me that Misto is at his home with his humans." Munk told him. "It would be best if we all went together."
"Lead the way, fearless leader." Tugger said, vaguely mocking his brother with a salute.
"Please don't do that." Munk sighed. "Just… I'd appreciate it if you walked normally. And not with as much sauntering as you normally do."
"Well then stop walking around in my body like you have a stick up your-"
"Please, just both of you be quiet and let's go." Alonzo rolled his eyes. It was going to be a long trip.
I saw a recording of the stage show where Alonzo ended up dancing along with Bombalurina and Demeter during Macavity's song and decided to include it in this chapter. Very interesting stuff. Stay tuned for part three!