I never uploaded this chapter before since I never finished it. This was a chapter I wrote in August 2015, before I decided to give up writing the first draft of Under the Sea. This chapter is incomplete.
Chapter 91: My Pretty Seahorse
Several days later...
October 6, 2008
After eating the last spoon of cereal, SpongeBob walked into the living room. He had the urge to exit his home and appreciate the weather. He slept pleasantly last night and was eager to fully seize the day.
Gary slithered to the couch, grabbed the remote, and turned on the TV.
SpongeBob exited the pineapple.
The yellow square turned around and crouched near the flowers surrounding his home. "Good morning, little flowers." SpongeBob took his time at appreciating the flowers' temporary beauty. After checking the calendar earlier, he knew that winter was approaching.
A group of jellyfish flew into SpongeBob and accidentally knocked him down.
SpongeBob immediately stood up. "Brothers and sisters, wait for me!" He followed the jellyfish by running as fast as he could.
The group of jellyfish flew into a hive that was sticking out of a large piece of coral.
"Buzz buzz. Buzz buzz. Ok, I'm here!" SpongeBob stood before the hive.
The group of jellyfish flew out of the hive and headed for elsewhere.
He suddenly remembered a moment of his former time as a 'jellyfish'. He thought about the types of jellyfish he had seen during that wacky day and that led to another memory.
"Squidward! Hey, Squidward! Squidward! Squidward-iard!" SpongeBob yelled at Squidward's tiki so he could get the octopus's attention.
Squidward opened one of the windows. "What?" He wasn't as grumpy as usual because he had one of the best Sundays in his life. SpongeBob and Patrick were nearly gone for the whole day.
"Squidward! Look at my new pet!" SpongeBob pointed at the leashed jellyfish who was his new friend.
SpongeBob stood up and turned to look at a nearby jellyfish that was floating towards the south. 'Should I get another pet?' He put a hand on his chin and thougnt deeply about the pros and cons of the drastic action. After nearly a minute, he came to a conclusion. 'Nah. It'll probbaly ruin my home. Money's kinda tight now and repairs this time of year cost way too much.'
Squidward exited the tiki. He walked towards his backyard garden so he could tend it.
The yellow square turned his attention to Squidward and walked up to him. "Hi Squidward, isn't it a lovely day?" He beamed. His morning could not become complete without a conversation with his neighbors.
Squidward did not pay attention to SpongeBob's words. "Huh?" He looked at the sponge from the corner of his eye.
"Have you said hello to the flowers yet?" The yellow square thought that Squidward's demeanor was not bright enough to be appropriate for a morning. He pointed at the flowers near his pineapple.
'If that'll make him leave me alone...' Squidward's face became deadpan. He walked to the flowers and leaned towards them. "Good morning, flowers." He droned. The octopus desired to maintain his garden without any interferences from his helpful acquaintance.
A breeze the flowers towards the octopus. The plants looked like they were hissing at Squidward.
'Gosh, I didn't know Squid had hay fever. I'll do him kindness and plant him some hypoallergenic flowers.' SpongeBob became more concerned. He glanced at the flowers and remembered the spot in the garage where he had left the seeds for such flowers. After the unexpected occurrence of the Plankton family invasion, he assumed that Squidward and other witnesses felt a heavy amount of shock. As he walked to the pineapple's front door, faint images of frightened people during his time as a lifeguard repeated in his head like broken record players.
A few minutes later…
The yellow square reached the back of his home. He was holding several seeds in both hands. He silently peeked at the tiki's garden and immediately noticed that Squidward was not there. He tip-toed to the backyard and searched for an appropriate spot. He examined the garden's flora and, judging by the dew on the plants' leaves, figured out that Squidward tended them about a minute ago. After a few seconds of cautious steps, he found an empty space that was perfect for his gifts to Squidward. He slowly dug through the space with his hands to avoid any damage to the surrounding kelps. He then set the seeds in places that were adequately separate from each other. "You're on your way. I bet you're thirsty." The sponge smiled warmly. He imagined the smile that Squidward would make once he saw the pleasant surprise awaiting him. The sponge covered the seeds with the soil and saw a nearby watering can. He snatched the can and watered the plants by a decent amount. He swiftly put the can in its original spot and skipped back to his pineapple before Squidward could see him.
Ten minutes later…
SpongeBob glanced at the living room clock. '6:40 AM' was what it said. He still had plenty of time to relax before performing his daily fry cook duties. The thought of jellyfishing entered his mind. 'The weather's perfect. Why not?' He eagerly ran out of the living room.
A minute later…
The sponge closed the treasure chest and adjusted his glasses. With a jellyfishing net in hand, he exited the bedroom with a CRREEAK SLAM.
SpongeBob exited the pineapple with a CREAK SLAM and walked towards Patrick's rock. He heard off-key notes as he strolled and the sponge then looked up to see Squidward playing his clarinet with the tiki's top windows fully opened. The octopus' teaching sessions at the Recreation Center had led to an increased audacity that made his inflated ego even more obvious. The sponge resisted his urges to cringe. 'I hope no one makes fun of Squid.' He looked at the ground. 'Why doesn't he want any help?' He was unaware of his subtle influence on the octopus' narcisstic attitude.
When the sponge was several steps away from Patrick's home, he gave in to his urge to check on his organic presents' status. In less than a second, he perceived that the garden's kelps had gained odd features. "Huh?" He took a few steps closer and realized that the kelps' tops had been bitten off. 'Who would eat raw kelp? It definitely can't be Squid, he always cooks it before eating it. It's gotta be that jellyfish I saw.' He glanced around but did not see the jellyfish heading for the south. 'I can't let it ruin my surprise.' He became solemn and ran to the pineapple's backyard.
A few minutes later…
SpongeBob was sitting adjacent to the garage door. He had been staring at the watered patch of ground for the last few minutes. The sponge, in his mind, viewed himself as the seeds' guardian. The question of obtaining another pet returned. Such a life-altering opportunity was becoming more and more irresistible. It also triggered a distant memory.
A 20 year-old SpongeBob was planting seeds near the pineapple's perimeter. He had moved into the neighborhood a month ago and had finished community college a few months before that. By that current point in time, he was accustomed to the new environment. The yellow square was close to finishing his preparation for the mini-garden when he saw a snail slithering across the road.
The snail had bloodshot eyes and his stomach was completely empty. The frailty of his skin indicated the days he had went without food. His journey towards satiety had lasted for a long time.
The yellow square frowned at the sight of the creature. He immediately had the urge to feed the snail. 'Poor guy. He must be looking for food.' The sponge put down his shovel, took off his gloves, and stood up. He remained still to see how the snail was going to react.
The snail turned to look at SpongeBob. He stopped slithering out of a fear of an ambush. Many snails had attacked him in the past.
SpongeBob smiled warmly. "It's okay, buddy." He spoke in a soft voice and slowly walked towards the snail. "I won't hurt you."
The snail backed away at the speed of SpongeBob's walking.
A light bulb lit up in SpongeBob's head. The yellow square grinned and ran back to the pineapple.
The snail stared at the pineapple. He was unsure if the sponge was part of a group or not. After a few seconds of silence, he assumed that the sponge was going to use some tools from the pineapple to trap him. However, his uncertainty made him stay still.
A few minutes later…
SpongeBob exited the pineapple and was holding a bowl that was filled with Kelpo cereal. He walked at an even slower pace, crouched when he was close enough to the snail, and set the bowl on the ground.
A long pause.
The snail eyed the bowl. He had a hunch that the cereal was coated with a sleep-inducing drug. He slithered towards the bowl and his eyestalks were a few inches away from the cereal. He inspected the cereal for nearly a minute before eating it. The creature immediately liked the cereal's taste and began to gobble it.
SpongeBob tip-toed towards the snail and touched the snail's shell to see if he trusted him.
The snail glanced at SpongeBob before resuming his eating.
The yellow square gently pet the snail. 'I can't leave him here. Is he alone or from a home?'
The sponge was staring into space as he savored the memory of his first encounter with Gary.
Patrick walked to the pineapple's front door. He KNOCKed on it a few times.
The sponge crouched and peeked at Patrick while remaining behind his home's back. He constantly switched his gaze between Patrick and the wet ground.
Patrick looked around and spotted SpongeBob. "Hey, SpongeBob." He grinned and strolled up to his best friend. He was going to ask the all-important question: 'What're we gonna do today?'.
"Hi, Pat." SpongeBob beamed and waved. From the corner of his eye, he saw a green creature swimming up to the garden and then eating the remaining kelp. He gasped, turned to face the garden, and his eyes bugged out. That creature was a female seahorse. The seahorse's beauty immediately captivated him. "S-she's beautiful…"
"What's beautiful?' Patrick scratched his head and looked at his surroundings to find what interested SpongeBob.
SpongeBob quietly pointed at the seahorse. He was wondering about where the seahorse came from and how long she had roamed across the land.
"Oh." Patrick faced the seahorse. His deadpan face expressed his indifference. "What's so special about it? If you walk into nowhere for long enough, you'll find 'em." He looked at SpongeBob from the corner of his eye. "Trust me. I've take enough family tips to know that." His intelligence had increased a few hours ago.
"I don't know. I rarely get to see animals like her." SpongeBob spoke in a more reserved tone. The seahorse's beauty made him feel like he was in the presence of a monarch or other people of high status. However, his solemnity was broken by a crooked smile. He could barely control his eagerness to interact with the green creature. He was unable to resist the idea of having a new pet; the opportunity being offered to him was too great to be rejected. Like the day when he got hired at the Krusty Krab, he was allowing his gut feeling to fuel him forward.
"It's a she?" Patrick tilted his head to the side. "It looks like a male." He was not well-versed in the sexual dimorphism of non-intelligent creatures.
"She's definitely a female." SpongeBob pointed at the seahorse's tail. "Females have stripes on their tails while males don't." His improved memory allowed him to remember quotes from the teacher of his high school biology class.
SpongeBob's statement confused Patrick to the point of lowering his intelligence. "Then why do all zebras have stripes? Why doesn't Sandy have stripes?" The starfish looked at the ground and put a hand on his chin.
SpongeBob laughed. "I'm taking about seahorses, Pat. It's quite simple." The yellow square could tell that his friend was currently more forgetful. He turned his attention back to the seahorse. 'She's just so… magnificent. I shall tame her.' The sponge was hellbent on achieving his new goal. His mind was fully immersed in the present. He jogged to the pineapple's garden and snatched a few flowers.
Patrick wandered towards his rock as he tried to clear the fog in his head. "Was I jellyfishing, talking, or walking?" He felt like speaking his own thoughts would bring more clarity. He had forgotten the reason for why he had talked to his best friend.
SpongeBob stood a foot away from the tiki's garden. He stared at the flowers and then looked up to gaze at the seahorse. 'Who knows what we can accomplish?' His head was brimming with daydreams about fantastical adventures with the seahorse. Those thoughts only increased his enthusiasm and energy. He zipped to his home and entered it with a CREAK SLAM. He had a stratagem in mind.
Three minutes later…
SpongeBob exited the pineapple, walked to the middle of the path towards the pineapple's door, and sat there. He was holding a notebook that had a bookmark made out of flowers. He turned to watch the seahorse for several minutes. He began writing on a blank page once he had the urge. 'Because of her mysterious behavior, I have decided to name her Mystery. Hmm, now that I think of it, she is very graceful and majestic. Perhaps I should name her Grace, or Majesty, or Debbie.' The sponge wrote down what he was thinking.
Mystery picked up the scent of the flower bookmark. She neighed and moved away from the kelp garden.
SpongeBob beamed. 'She must have spotted my floral bookmark.' The sponge began to shaje as the seahorse drew closer and closer. His beam became a grin. 'She's coming this way.' "That's it, girl. Don't be afraid. I'm just a talking sponge, is all." He held out the book towards Mystery.
The seahorse sniffed the bookmark before eating it. She then made a loud neigh to express how much she liked the bookmark's flavor.
SpongeBob stood up and skipped towards his pineapple. "Follow me!" He signaled with his hand and opened the front door with a CRREEAAK. 'We're gonna have so much fun together!' He jumped up and down as he thought of what he and Mystery could do together.
The seahorse neighed again and swam into the pineapple.
SpongeBob stepped into his home and closed the door with a SLAM.
Ten minutes later...
SpongeBob closed the front door with a SLAM. He had fed Mystery some food that she preferred (he figured that out through trial-and-error). The yellow square jumped and landed on the seahorse's back. "Giddy up!" The yellow square patted Mystery on the head. He then giggled. 'I've always wanted to say that!'
Mystery neighed and swiftly swam away from the neighborhood.
"Woo!" SpongeBob grinned and his heartbeat quickened. He grabbed Mystery's scruff as she quickened her pace and swam towards distant locations. His work day flew to the back of his mind as he fully enjoyed the new activity.
Twenty-five minutes later...
SpongeBob was holding his bubble wand and soap bottle. He opened the bottle, dipped the wand into it, and blew a chain of triangle and square bubbles. The last bubble on the chain was heart-shaped and was the biggest.
Mystery gazed at the bubbles. She could not recognize what they were and thought that they were jellyfish. The seahorse backed away from the bubbles and prepared herself so she could flee. She now gave the bubbles a suspicious look.
Patrick exited his rock in search of a cure to his boredom. He strolled to the sponge. The scared seahorse and the bubbles piqued his interest. "You're playing with the seahorse?"
SpongeBob nodded. "Wanna join?" He felt like playing was the best way to introduce Patrick to Mystery. He pointed at the seahorse. "She's called Mystery, by the way..." The sponge noticed Mystery's distraughtness. He slightly tilted his head to the side.
Patrick touched Mystery's back and felt her shivering. "She doesn't look too good." He bit his lip as he wondered if the seahorse was going to attack him.
SpongeBob repeatedly switched his attention between the bubbles and Mystery. "Maybe it's 'cause of the bubbles." He stopped smiling and popped a bubble with his wand. He looked at Mystery from the corner of his eye.
Mystery's shivering lessened. She inched towards the bubbles.
The yellow sponge made a crooked smile. He effortlessly popped the remaining bubbles. "Sorry, Mystery." He stroked the seahorse's back. "I didn't mean to hurt you." He tucked the wand and the bottle to his pockets as he thought of alternate activities.
"How're we gonna play with her?" Patrick's mind was blank as a new canvas. He assumed that Mystery would not like 'typically' fun activities like jellyfishing or bubble blowing.
A light bulb lit up in SpongeBob's head. "Wait right here." The sponge brightened his smile, ran to the pineapple, and entered it with a CREAK SLAM.
Almost three minutes later…
SpongeBob exited the pineapple with a CREAK SLAM. He was holding a large and soft blue ball. "We could play catch!" He faced Mystery. With enthusiasm, he leaped and tossed the ball in mid-air towards the seahorse.
Mystery watched the ball and then flinched when it landed on her snout. As she tried to move away from the ball, she unintentionally balanced the ball.
"She's smart!" Patrick clapped. "She knows what she's supposed to do." The starfish grabbed the ball and, with his mustered strength, threw it towards a far location. He glanced at Mystery. "Fetch it!" He pointed at the location.
Mystery gave Patrick a blank look.
SpongeBob tilted his head to the side. "Why you did that?" Thoughts of Patrick ruining his playtime with Mystery filled his mind but he dismissed them as unlikely. He was aware of his time constraints before work and was trying to fill it with as much enjoyment as possible.
"I thought you said 'fetch'." Patrick looked at his best friend and shrugged. He had been following his instincts more than his own thoughts.
SpongeBob giggled nervously as he tried to estimate the distance between him and the ball. "I said 'catch'." He began to consider the option to switch to another activity.
"Oh." Patrick stared at the ball's distant location. He then turned to the nearby rocks and coral pieces so he could use them as ball substitutes.
Twelve minutes later…
The two best friends were lying on the living room floor. They were sticking stamps to the pages of two leftover stamp books found in the garage. Since SpongeBob thought that playing catch with Mystery would be too risky, he proposed 'stamp book making' as an alternate activity.
Mystery was roaming through the pineapple's rooms as she became accustomed to her new environment. At times, she would poke objects such as chairs or cabinets to see what they would do.
Gary was eyeing Mystery with suspicious. He was unable to focus on the TV screen since the thought of a stranger in his home was too unsettling for him. When he saw the seahorse pass by for the fifteenth time, he slithered from the couch. "Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow."
SpongeBob's smile lessened and he turned to see his snail. "You didn't notice her before? Her name's Mystery. I brought her in and she's here to stay." The sponge pet Gary. "Don't worry, Gary. She wouldn't hurt a nematode." He was seeing the sweat running down Gary's back and the snail's constant vigilance.
"Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow." Gary did not accept how Mystery was going to be handled. He considered her to be a threat to his privacy and liberty.
The yellow square began to contemplate on Gary's viewpoint. He desired to prevent another betrayal by his snail. Ideas for how the pineapple can accommodate for both Mystery and Gary. "I'll figure things out. Even if it doesn't turn out too well, look at the bright side. Whenever I'm off to work, you won't be lonely." The sponge beamed and then resumed his stamp book making.
Gary looked at the floor and slowly returned to the couch. Even though SpongeBob fully understood his language, he felt like his words were falling on deaf ears.
The seahorse swam to a halt before her owner. She observed Gary and neighed.
"He's called Gary. He came here before you." SpongeBob looked up at Mystery. "Like you, he came for the food." The sponge giggled. He stuck the stamps into his stamp book at a faster pace. He was enjoying the first gathering of the new family.
Twenty minutes later…
SpongeBob, Patrick, and Mystery exited a clothing store. The seahorse was wearing a grey cowboy hat.
The sponge decided that a shopping spree would be a decent outing with his new pet. The yellow square had his employee hat and nametag in his pocket. The hat he bought and was wearing was a blue and white propellor hat.
Patrick was wearing a purple vest. Underneath the vest was a black shirt that had white text saying 'I AM DUMB, STRONG, AND PROUD'. His confidence boost became apparent though his marching.
Nearly an hour later…
SpongeBob put on his nametag and employee hat. "Bye, Gary, Bye, Mystery." He waved at his two pets before jogging across the living room. He exited with a CRREEAAK SLAM.
Gary focused on the TV; he was trying his hardest to ignore Mystery. Whenever Mystery was too close to him, he inched towards the right. At times, the seahorse would stare at the snail but would receive a glare and a hiss.
The channel being shown on the TV was the Bikini Bottom Local News channel.
Johnny Erain was once again sitting on the desk with news reports in hand. "Recently, there was a series of reports related to illegally killed seahorses and sea bears. All of the slain animals had identical bullet marks around their torsos or necks. Many citizens are outraged by these atrocities and some even fear that the populations of those killed animals will dwindle to the numbers they had during ancient times. If you have any information related to the poachers, please call this number:"
'555-367-201' was shown on the screen.
When the seahorse leaned towards the snail, Gary hissed and jumped to the floor. He assumed that Mystery was going to bite his shell off.
Nearly twelve hours later…
SpongeBob mopped the remaining dirty spots on the kitchen floor. During his work day, skirmishes had occurred throughout the pineapple between Gary and Mystery. However, he did not mind at all since he thought that they had been playing during his time away from home. Once the floor was completely clean, he poured the bucket's water into the sink. He exited the kitchen with a CRREEAK SLAM.
SpongeBob strolled upstairs.
SpongeBob entered the bedroom. Gary was slithering to the newspaper pile while Mystery was searching through the room for a place to sleep at.
The yellow square turned off the lights with a FLICK, took off his shoes, and laid on the bed. When he slipped the blanket over himself, the seahorse swam to the bed and managed to laid down in spite of the lack of space. The sponge grinned. "Gosh, Mystery, today was one of the best days ever. Do you think we'll be friends forever?"
Gary glared at Mystery. Not only had the seahorse stolen his private sanctuary known as the living room, she had also stolen his owner. After some seconds of recollecting today's events, he concluded that his relations with SpongeBob were tainted by Mystery. He was now in SpongeBob's position when he had abandoned the sponge.
Mystery closed her eyes and immediately fell asleep.
"I'll take that as a yes." SpongeBob closed his eyes and snuggled with the seahorse.
The next day…
Squidward looked up at the clock in the tiki's living room. The clock said '8:50 AM'. 'Ah. My daily buzzkill.' His face became deadpan and he began to search the living room for his employee hat. When he found the hat underneath the sofa, he saw his bicycle out of the corner of his eye. A light bulb lit up in his head. 'Why haven't I thought of that?' He could not remember the last time he rode his bicycle to work. He put the employee hat into his shirt pocket and then put on the bicycle helmet. He grabbed the bicycle's handlebars and dragged it to the front door.
He exited the tiki.
Gary was against one corner of the pineapple's living room. He was glaring at Mystery for the seemingly hundredth time and hissed whenever the seahorse made a move towards him. He was determined to gain SpongeBob's attention and care.
Mystery was against another corner of the room. She was shaking heavily and was darting her eyes for an escape route.
The couch and the couch chair were overturned. The fake green bait was on the floor and the hooks that used to be stuck to it were scattered across the room. The TV was unplugged and was nearly tipped over by Mystery. A sea that consisted of the closet's contents was over the room's floor.
SpongeBob was helplessly watching the two creatures with wide eyes. He was clutching the employee hat in his hand. The disruptions to his morning routine began the moment he woke up. He had learned the truth the hard way and was desperate to find a solution to the endless fighting.
Patrick barged into the room. He had been overhearing the noises of Mystery and Gary's battles. He walked up to SpongeBob. "You okay?" He was oblivious to the living room's wreckage.
A light bulb lit up in the sponge's head. SpongeBob grinned and put on his hat. "Thanks, Pat!" He gave his best friend a thumbs-up and hopped to Mystery's back. "Giddy up, gal!" He slapped the seahorse's scruff.
Mystery neighed and rapidly swam through the open doorway.
An awkward pause.
Patrick scratched his head. "What did I do?" He glanced at the snail. "You know anything, Gary?" He gazed at the ruins of the room. "Wow, there must've been one huge party. Why wasn't I invited?" The starfish had no intention for his questions to be answered. His statements were uninhibited.
Squidward was faintly smiling as he biked his way towards the Krusty Krab. He was beginning to enjoy the air rushing against his body. Most of his memories about workday mornings consisted of melancholic drifts from his tiki to the Krusty Krab. Within a minute, he turned to see SpongeBob riding on Mystery. He nearly fell off his bicycle. "What the-"
"Hey, Squid. Still riding a machine to work, I see!" SpongeBob waved and tightened his grip on the seahorse. He was glad to see that Squidward was altering his routine as well.
Squidward's intuition was telling him that an unfortunate event was about to occur. The octopus then quickly reflected over past strange changes related to SpongeBob. He eventually concluded that most of them brought misfortune. 'Don't say anything, Squidward. Remember your karma.' His thoughts distracted him from focusing on the path ahead of him.
The bicycle's front wheel hit a small rock.
The bicycle fell down and Squidward rolled across the asphalt.
SpongeBob's eyes bugged out. "Mystery, stop!" He carefully spanked Mystery's head. He was completely focused on the fallen octopus and his grip on the seahorse loosened.
Mystery slowed the speed of her swimming.
The yellow square hopped to the ground and ran towards Squidward. "Squidward, are you alright?!" He grabbed the octopus and shook him repeatedly. He sweatdropped and looked down in a search for injuries on his neighbor's body.
The octopus' dizziness faded after more than ten seconds. He stood still, grabbed SpongeBob's arms, and gently pushed SpongeBob away. He wiped the dirt off his shirt. "I'm okay." He took hold of his bicycle, adjusted his helmet, and sat on the bicycle's seat. "Just forget that happened." He bit his lip and looked around to see if anyone saw his blunder. Ever since his early days of bike-riding, he maintained an air of mastery. He then rapidly pedaled towards the restaurant to avoid any more blows to his ego.
SpongeBob wiped sweat from his brow in relief. He jogged back to Mystery and sat on her. "Giddy up!"
Mystery resumed her swift swimming.
A few minutes later…
Mystery was heading straight for the Krusty Krab. The sponge was feeling too uncomfortable with his pet's speed. "Whoa girl." He put his heels on the ground and leaned away from the seahorse's head.
The seahorse neighed and ceased her 'galloping'.
SpongeBob leaped to the ground and took out a piece of rope that he had bought yesterday. He put the noose around Mystery's neck and wrapped the rope's other end on a recently installed bike rack. "Now you wait out here until I'm done with work." He gave Mystery one last look and waved at her. "See you at the end out." He entered the Krusty Krab with a C-CRREAK S-SLAM.
Eleven minutes later…
Scooter and a friend walked towards the Krusty Krab. They noticed Mystery and the new bike rack.
"Hey, look." Scooter pointed at the seahorse. "Mr. Krabs put in a kiddy ride." He had never seen a seahorse before.
"Why don't you try it out?' His friend tossed a few coins to Scooter. He remembered a time when Scooter failed to endure a bull ride.
Scooter accepted the challenge without a word. He caught the coins and ran to the seahorse. He inspected Mystery's body parts. "I can't find the coin slot." He examined Mystery's rear. "Here it is!" He jabbed the coin at the wrong spot.
Mystery neighed loudly and viciously kicked Scooter. She swam so fast that she dragged the rack with her.
The friend's face became pale. "HELP! KIDDY RIDE ON THE LOOSE!" He dashed towards the Krusty Krab and barged the double door open with a S-SLAM.
Mr. Krabs barged open the office door and exited the office. "What's with all the ruckus?" He thought that a criminal hired by Plankton was wrecking havoc on his restaurant. He ran across the dining room and stepped out of the restaurant.
The crustacean saw Mystery and gasped. "A monster scaring away me customers!" Like SpongeBob, he had not seen many seahorses. He mistook the creature for another creature because Mystery was moving incredibly fast.
SpongeBob exited the Krusty Krab. He had seen Mystery's rampage by looking through a large window. "That's not a monster, Mr. Krabs. It's a seahorse." He strolled to Mystery and pet her. He looked at his boss as he stroked his pet's back. "She's my friend. Her name's Mystery." Unlike the others, he was rather calm. Gary and Mystery's skirmishes had desensitized him.
Mr. Krabs folded his arms. "You're a mystery, SpongeBob." He shook his head. He knew that the seahorse could attract more customers to the Krusty Krab. However, he also knew that Mystery could easily scare away customers by lashing out. "Get rid of it." He commanded.
""Huh?" SpongeBob's eyes widened. He made eye contact with his pet and frowned. 'I can't let Mystery stay at home. If I let her stay with Gary, she'll probably run away and never come back.' The yellow square thought that he had an obligation to protect Mystery. He walked up to Mr. Krabs and fell to his knees. "Please, Mr. Krabs, let her stay." He clasped his hands. "She won't hurt nobody nohow!" His limbs began to shake. His mind was filled with unpleasant thoughts about how Mystery was going to handle loneliness.
Mr. Krabs narrowed his eyes. "It's either you or Mystery." He confidently predicted SpongeBob's decision. He surveyed the Krusty Krab's vicinity for any damage caused by Mystery.
SpongeBob sighed. 'I know I should've named her Debbie.' A random thought entered his head. He glanced at Mystery and a light bulb lit up. His heartbeat quickened and he resisted the urge to change his expression. "Okay." He spoke quietly and unwrapped the rope from the rack. He dragged Mystery towards elsewhere. His frown became a mask instead of a sincere expression.
Mr. Krabs nodded and returned to the Krusty Krab with a C-CRREEAK S-SLAM.
A minute later…
SpongeBob entered the kitchen through the backdoor. He managed to squeeze Mystery through the doorway. He then quickly opened a cabinet, pushed the seahorse into it, and closed the cabinet. He was fortunate since Nicholas was coming to work slightly late. "Phew." He took a deep breath in relief and snatched the spatula from the table.
Twenty-six minutes later…
SpongeBob was flipping patties and glanced at the cabinet every ten seconds. He was aware of nearly all of Mystery's slight movements. By that time, Nicholas still had not entered the restaurant.
Mr. Krabs opened the door to the office with a CRREEAAK. In the dining room, he had just watched the news report about the poachers. "SpongeBob, thanks for getting rid of that horse." He was smiling. After seeing the report, he had concluded that the seahorse would have brought negative attention to the Krusty Krab and damaged the business' reputation. He also thought that SpongeBob had decided wisely.
SpongeBob put on his mask of sadness. "You're welcome, Mr. Krabs." He did not make eye contact and frowned. He tried to moisten his eyes but failed due to the grill's smoke. He glanced at the cabinet and flipped a patty with more force than usual.
"Now, if we could only get rid of Squidward." Mr. Krabs spoke loud enough for Squidward to hear him. When the octopus turned to glance at him, the crab did a pirate laugh. The crab always found subtle ways to motivate Squidward to work harder. He closed the office door with a SLAM.
SpongeBob giggled. "Good one, sir." He stacked the patties with spatula, ran to the table, and promptly assembled a batch of Krabby Patties. He tossed the burgers to a platter and passed the platter to Squidward. "Here you go."
Squidward closed the novel with much force. Mr. Krabs' snide joke had ruined his enjoyment of the book. His face became more expressionless. The octopus took the platter and walked to the family who ordered the food.
SpongeBob skipped to the cabinet, opened it, and beamed. "Ha, it worked, girl! We'll just keep you here until I figure out a place for you to stay." He loudly whispered to the confined seahorse. He envisioned a fenced area near his pineapple where Mystery could roam and play in. However, he was mindful of his current plan's flaws. He closed the cabinet and walked back to the grill.
Patrick entered the dining room. His relaxed smile indicated that he exactly knew what he desired to eat.
SpongeBob peeked through the ordering window and saw his incoming friend. Another light bulb lit up in his head. He opened the door to the dining room with a CRREEAK and signaled with his hand for Patrick to enter the kitchen. He tried to control his eagerness from manifesting through constant hopping.
Patrick noticed SpongeBob and absentmindedly entered the kitchen.
SpongeBob closed the door with a SLAM. He faced the sea star and grinned. "Pat, can you do me a favor by building a stable? Mystery needs a place to stay at." He tried to speak as concise as possible so Patrick could understand him.
"Okay." Patrick nodded. 'Building a stable shouldn't be too hard. It's just made outta wood stuff.' Due to his decreased intelligence, he overestimated his construction abilities. He assumed that building a stable was very simple.
"You know where to get planks and a hammer?" SpongeBob was taking a precaution. He knew how big stables were and thought that the project would be daunting for his best friend. However, he did not sweatdrop at all.
Patrick shrugged. "Can I get 'em from your house?" He did not have the motivation to search through the whole town for several products. Before entering the Krusty Krab, he had been on a TV binge.
SpongeBob put a hand on his chin as he remembered the garage's contents. "You can find a hammer there... but I don't there's any wood." He took out a pencil and grabbed a small piece of paper that was on a cabinet. He jot down the address of the shop. "This shop sells the planks." He gave Patrick the paper. 'I hope Pat gets it done right. He didn't do too well in wood shop.' He remembered a humorous moment that occurred during high school. He continued to wear a smile.
"Gotcha." Patrick nodded again and exited the kitchen with a CRREEAAK SLAM.
The sea star strolled to the double door and exited the building with a C-CRREEAAK S-SLAM. He believed that the errand would not take more than thirty minutes to finish.
Forty minutes later...
Patrick dropped a massive box of planks to the ground. He had also bought some glue contaIners and bolt containers because he believed that they would hold the stable together. He opened the box and stared at the planks before he remembered his main goal. He spilled the planks to the ground, grabbed a plank, grabbed a glue container, and squeezed the glue to the plank. When he tried to get another plank, the plank he held stuck to his forehead. "Uh-oh." He sat on a plank stack as he tried to think of a solution.
SpongeBob turned around and saw Mystery inching her way out of the cabinet. He bit his lip and cautiously looked around. "No, Mystery, you can't come out yet. If old man Krabs sees you, I'll lose my job." He pushed the seahorse. He was about to close the cabinet when he heard the grumbling of Mystery's stomach. He widened his eyes slightly and then smiled. "I bet you're hungry. How about some lunch?" He grabbed a spare Krabby Patty from a tray on the table and held it before Mystery.
The seahorse sniffed the burger before taking a bite. She neighed to express her liking for the Krabby Patty's taste.
"Shh! Girl, you got to be quiet or..." SpongeBob stopped talking when he heard sounds from the office. He swiftly kneed Mystery into the cabinet and closed it.
Mr. Krabs heard the neigh and stood up. He immediately guessed the location of the sound. He narrowed his eyes and folded his arms.
"SpongeBob!" Mr. Krabs opened the door connecting the office and the kitchen. He glared at his yellow employee. "What was that? Is that horse in here?" He was sharp enough to detect deception among his crewmates.
SpongeBob sweated moderately and wore a nearly unconvincing smile. "No, Mr. Krabs. I was just practicing my imitation of Mystery." The sponge attempted to neigh. His shakiness made the neigh sound like a sneeze.
Mr. Krabs stopped glaring and released his arms. "Well, keep working on it. That was terrible." The constant interruptions was testing the boss' temper. His bluntness was a sign of future frustration. He entered the office and closed the door with a SLAM.
SpongeBob wiped sweat from his forehead. "That was close." He looked up at the closest sticky note on the metal wheel. "From now on, no more hijinks." He grabbed a few patties and tossed them to the grill.
A few minutes later...
Mystery was hiding behind her owner. Her hunger could not be satisfied by one bite from a delicious Krabby Patty.
"Order up!" SpongeBob placed a tray of Krabby Patties on the ordering window. He walked away to obtain more patties. He was oblivious to Mystery's nearby presence.
The seahorse swiftly gulped the burgers and hid behind between the grill and the fryer.
Squidward turned around and saw the empty tray. "SpongeBob, where's my order?" He folded his arms. He then glanced at the novel that he had been reading.
SpongeBob looked at Squidward from the corner of his eye. "Did you look under the tray?" He shrugged. 'Why's he asking that? I'm sure I left those patties there.' He grabbed a stack of patties and put it near the grill.
"No I didn't, sorry." Squidward picked up the tray and saw no Krabby Patties on the sill. He sighed since he did not want to drag out his delivery of the food. "SpongeBob, could you just get my order?" He looked down to read the open novel as he waited for the ordered burgers.
SpongeBob looked at the windowsill and tilted his head to the side. 'How's that possible? I swore I put them… wait, maybe...' He jumped to a conclusion and his eyes bugged out. "Squid, do you think the Krusty Krab's haunted?" He sweatdropped and began to check his kitchen for any signs of paranormal activity. "What if they come for me next? I gotta get outta here!" He blurted as he imagined ghosts lurking in the shadows.
Squidward looked at his coworker again and tightened his fists. He turned back to see a growing line of customers. He then leaned into the ordering window. "SpongeBob!" He snapped his fingers. 'He can't be that stupid. He should've moved on from that conch-thinking by now.'
SpongeBob stopped running and shakily made eye contact with the octopus.
"Use your brain." Squidward pointed at his forehead.
Squidward's gesture reminded SpongeBob of what he learned about critical thinking. He quickly examined the room and realized that there were no ghosts in the restaurant. "Oh." He nervously giggled at his foolishness.
Squidward thought that saying a summary of the daily routine would help the sponge. "In case you've forgotten, here's how things work. I order the food, you cook the food, the customer gets the food…"
Squidward's words were drowned by SpongeBob's mental voice. The yellow square was paying attention to Mystery who was on the room's other side. He watched the seahorse eat the ingredients that were on the table. He remained still as Mystery exited the kitchen and began to eat a customer's Krabby Patty. The sudden realization of his seahorse's escape had made him unable to decide what to do next.
"We do that for forty years and then we die. Sounds like a pretty good deal to me, what do you say?" Squidward finished his summary. He glanced at the customer line again. 'Barnacles! I can't let Krabs see this.' He grabbed a notepad. "How may I help you?" He faced the first customer in line.
SpongeBob did not want to further annoy the octopus. "Yeah, yeah, yeah, I hear you Squid. I'll be right back." He nodded and wore a smile. He then bit his lip and ran through the doorway to the dining room.
With an increase heartbeat, he frantically jogged around the dining room in search of his seahorse. He spotted Mystery when she began to eat from a trash bin. The sponge leaped to Mystery, hugged her tightly, and ran back to the kitchen; within five seconds.
He shut the door.
SpongeBob opened the cabinet and tucked Mystery into the cabinet's largest section. He closed the cabinet, faced Squidward, and grinned to look innocent. He took a deep breath and wiped the sweat on his brow. He walked back to the grill when he perceived that Squidward was not watching.
Squidward turned to look through the window. "What was that?" He was hearing strange sounds that were coming from the cabinet.
SpongeBob's heartbeat quickened. "Don't tell Mr. Krabs. I got it all under control." He was trying his best to hide his fright. He looked at the cabinet from the corner of his eye and noticed that Mystery was opening it. He ran back to the cabinet and closed it. "Now then, you were saying?"
"Just get my order." Squidward sat down and resumed his reading. He saw no point in reminding SpongeBob about an obvious task.
SpongeBob nodded. "You got it, Squid." He smiled and then chuckled at a thought of his. "Ghosts." He thought that his recent belief was silly and irrational. The yellow square suddenly felt his hat moving out of place and he looked up. He saw his seahorse licking the hat. "Mystery, stop that!" He whispered loudly and stepped away from Mystery. He glanced at the table and realized that nearly all of the ingredients had been eaten. His eyes bugged out. "Mystery, why did you do that?"
Squidward stood up when the customers' voices became louder. He knew that some of the customers were irritated. "Folks, we have a minor situation going on in the kitchen."' He was trying to avoid another fight with impatient customers.
"Where's my food?"
"I'm so hungry." A male teenager rub
bed his belly.
"This is my only lunch hour!"
"Where's Old Man Jenkins?"
The octopus took a deep breath. "Take it easy, the food's no good here anyway." He nearly droned. He was watching a group of customers that were stomping towards him with tightened fists. To his dismay, he was not skilled at dealing with large crowds. He glanced at the office since he knew that he could easily call the police with the office's phone.
Mr. Krabs exited the office with a CRREEAAK SLAM. "Squidward, what's going on in here?" His question sounded like an order. He folded his arms.
Squidward glanced at the ordering window and saw Mystery. He perceived the cause of SpongeBob's delay. "Why don't you ask CowBob RanchPants and his faithful companion Sir Eats-a-Lot?" He folded his arms and wore a smile .
Mr. Krabs became suspicious of the yellow fry cook. He immediately came to a conclusion and opened the kitchen's door with a CRREEEAAK.
The crustacean entered the kitchen. "SpongeBob, what's the meaning of all these nicknames?" He believed Squidward's sarcastic statement and interpreted it word-for-word. He saw SpongeBob struggling to control the seahorse. His jaw nearly dropped. "Davey H. Jones!"
Mystery stopped galloping and lowered herself to the floor. She could not move because her stomach was beginning to ache.
SpongeBob sat on his knees and felt Mystery's belly. He frowned out of pity and looked up at Mr. Krabs. "Mystery got a belly-ache from eating too much stuff." He was indirectly begging his boss to show some mercy. "Can I get a bi-carbonated soda for her?"
The chapter ends here. I never finished this chapter.