It was a typical shopping day at the local Mega-mart, the cashiers were understaffed and the lines were too long, and overworked parents did their best the wrangle in their selectively deaf kids. As most kids are when told not to do something, they were sure to do the opposite, like being told not to take their entire collection of micro-fluffs with them in their hoodie. And that’s just what little seven year old Janey did, with several of the little shit-rats riding in her pink pretty princess hoodie pockets and hood, trying to keep them quiet while keeping up with her mom. Like a typical clumsy kids a moments distraction looking at snacks lead to her tripping over her own two feet and the fluffs fell right out the hood and a few from the pockets.
“Damn it Samantha! I told you to leave those damn things at home!” Grabbing her daughter by the arm before she could collect all of them. “You’re grounded when we get home missy!”
And just like that eight assorted micro-fluffs were left behind in the potato chip aisle, they tried to chase after but were gone in seconds around the corner. One had already been stepped on by another customer and the rest scrambled under the racks of chips through a half knocked off kick plate into the dusty floor wax encrusted floors underneath.
Several week later…
The resident chip vendor was filling the shelves with fresh bags of assorted chips, he was on his third store for the day already and he had three more to do before the day was finished. not paying full attention from burned in muscle memory he over stuffed one shelf and the ass end of the last bag in the row burst open, spilling zesty ranch chips onto the base shelf. some spilling into the gap between the shelf and pegboard now he had to clean up, sweeping the chips into a dustpan and then lifting the shelf peeking underneath. dozens of micro-fluffs scurried about many fighting over the pile of chips that had piled up.
“Ah hell.” Starting to notice the smell.
Elsewhere in the store in the deli dept the line was backing up with orders for cuts of meats and cheeses and the few folks behind the counters did their best to keep up. one unfortunate young lady opened one of the meat coolers at floor level for the log of pastrami and what she saw behind it made her drop it on the floor.a dozen or so frozen to death micro-fluffs with another dozen not far behind them and they had already taken bites out some of the meat logs and shat on the ones they didn’t like, namely jalapeno salami.
“Hey Ken! Come look at this!” She called to her manager.
In the backrooms in the salvage area, the dumping ground of every open food package collected by employees, grazed upon by asshole customers. the rolling carts stacked with milk crates full of open chips, cookies, cereal, and any other snack anyone would give their kid to shut them up or gorge themselves. underneath these carts the floor was littered with crumbs and spilled assorted contents with just as many micro-fluffs gobbling up as much as they could. Eventually an overworked clerk came along pulling one of the carts out the rack to tally up the days losses the wheels crushed a bunch, their bodies making small pops and shrieks. the bodies getting caught in the wheels and the blood streaking across the dirty floor made an already nasty floor far far worse.
“Oh come the fuck on! I don’t need this shit today.”
And just like that the folks at SkettieLand E&C were called in, Jr, Bill and Shannon arrived and began coordinating with the employees to seek out their quarry. Stalker hopped out Jr’s truck freshly freed from the veterinary cone his hearing cleared up from the flash-bang grenade the meta had thrown at him. Odin was forced to get a cochlear implant for his right side and was still recovering at home, the store manager argued about having a non-service dog in the store even if it was closed. He relented when they threatened to leave him high and dry, a closed twenty-four hour store hemorrhaged money.
under the shelves the micros continued in their constant search for food and in the gap between the pegboard and shelf a bag a snacks poked its tail end through. four of the hamster sized pests dangled by their teeth from the bag, trying to pull it through without success. One, a green uni stallion with blue mane was one of the originals let loose and he had figured out a trick to opening the bags. Twisting his body to the side from the corner he dangled from he managed to tare it open and their combined weight opened it right up, burying them in cheesy potato chips. Eating his fill as fast as he could he took two of the biggest chips he could stack together and pulled them away as quick as he could to his own little corner next to a support post where his special friend nested.
-Yay! Gumbaww bwing nummies! bestest speciaw fwend eva!- The pearl white and blue maned mare cheered.
-Gumbaww bwing bestest nmmies eva fow tummeh babbehs.- Pushing the chips into biting range then went to push a half drank juice-box of fruit punch closer. -Wub Peaches, bestest speciaw fwend.- Taking a few gulps for himself.
they cooed and cuddled up to each other ready for Peaches to drop her latest brood as dozens of their other grown children scurried about adding to the chaotic mess. the pile of cheesy chips was eaten down to crumbs that were quickly licked up off the grimy, crusty floor then the mini-horde wandered off to to find something to slake their salt driven thirst.
-Biggest poopies!- Peaches squeaked out. -Babbehs comin!- Her fourth litter in so many weeks.
With encouragement from her mate Peaches squeezed out eight more chirping little lumps, two more from the last littler with a plain brown and an alicorn. Both were rejected outright by both parents, there was no room for poopies or munstas in their herd and when either tried to crawl towards a teat were kicked away. she never even bothered to finish licking them clean and after a fourth attempt to suckle the brown little chirpy was picked up by Gumball and was dropped into a pile of crusty dust-bunnies. the alicorn was next and to add insult to injury the sharp floor-wax crusted dirt cut their frail bodies when they were dropped in then shat on by Gumball before returning to Peaches’ side to help with the rest. Giving the newborns all the milkies and love parents possibly could especially Peaches newly chosen bestest babbeh, a filly with her daddeh’s colors, getting the largest portion milkies. The sudden loud banging from the kick-plate scared the poopies out of every micro behind it, then a crowbar hook poked through the gap between shelf and the plate, hooked it and pulled it down. the metallic clack of the folded sheet metal kick-plate slapping on linoleum floors echoed through the store and light flooded in blinding them all. the roar of the shop-vac motor, the cam-light on the end of the hose, it was as if hell itself had opened its mouth and started sucking them in.
Bill scooted across the floor on a garage creeper, meant for working under cars, while Shannon pushed the fifty-five gallon drum the fluff-buster was mounted on. an employee worked ahead of them pulling off the kick-plates with a tiny crowbar and stacking them in a grocery cart. the micros under the shelf scurried about bumping blindly into the support walls trying to escape the vacuum hose but once the cam light was on them. Twump! gone in the hose. Gumball cowered behind the juice-box next to Peaches and her peeping, chirping terrified foals. they covered their faces with nowhere to run, hiding behind their leggies was their only option left. at first they were saved by the juice-box, too big to fit inside, the fluff-buster roared even louder with the clog and the hose pulled back taking the box with it.
“That’s it for this section let’s move on to the next.” Bill tossed the juice-box aside then stuck the hose back in sucking up Gumball and Peaches.
that’s how they moved, four foot section by section sucking up many more and as Bill cleared out under a shelf Shannon would toss in glue traps and poison bait packets. when they finished the store clerk would replace the kick-plate and they would continue down the next aisle.
Jake Jr. followed Stalker on his leash, leading him through the store, the dog himself lead by his nose, away from the grocery side of the store to the general merch side the store manager tagging along. at first when they arrived at the pets dept they thought Stalker just wanted to eat, till he dragged them to the micro-fluff accessories section. Next to the small pet care and pawed at the kick-plate and barked repeatedly, accidentally knocking a bottle of micro-fluff nutragel off the shelf and right behind it were several micro-fluffs who went scurrying.
“I’ll get the fluff-buster.”
the heavy paper bags pet food that pressed against back of the shelves pushed the pegboard back making the gap between that and the shelf even wider making it easier for the micros to chew through. Jr found himself vacuuming up a lot of dry cat and dog food along with the micro-fluffs and the manager just cursed under his breath as he tallied up the lost inventory. When one clerk popped off the kick-plate under the micro-fluff section Jr was met with a line micros pressed together and their backs turned to him, tails defiantly lifted and aimed.
-Dis am genwaw bwoobewwy’s wand!- A blue earthy stood up in the center facing him, wearing a toy football helmet. -weave nao ow git wostest poopies eva!-
Jr hadn’t heard a word over the still running fluff-buster he simply sucked up General Blueberry head first and got the rest in a rapid succession of panicked poopies.
under the food salvage carts in the back the crates on the bottom had been raided by the micros, it took a great deal of effort but once a successful path had been mapped out…
Bill pulled out the carts watching as the wheels crushed the colorful vermin, the ones that had managed to get into the milk crates started abandoning ship trying to climb down and failing. the floor was thick with micros, the one having gotten into the open snacks dumped the bags and boxes out onto the floor, allowing them the breed faster than ever. but the quality… a lifetime, albeit a short one, of salty, sugary snacks with little nutritional value, many of the micros were in poor heath. many were overweight, severely dehydrated and the mares were miscarrying left and right or just pumping out stillbirths over and over. Patches of the floor were covered on piles of micro shit and dead foals and every other mare seemed to have died in labor. their mates either hugged the corpses trying to wake them or blamed the dead foals and stomped them into mush.
“God damn.” Was all Bill said as he fired up the fluff-buster.
Because the micro-fluffs had gotten into the deli freezers every log, brick and wheel of meat and cheese had to be thrown out. the deli workers were still loading the tainted goods into grocery carts headed for the dumpster when Shannon arrived. every freezer and cooler had to be unplugged and left open to thaw, almost all the ones at floor level had a small herd of micros in them, all had frozen to death at this point, some frozen to the floor. Handing out several pairs of gloves and paint scrapers they got to work and started dropping the rock solid little puffballs into buckets with a loud plastic plunk.Stalker took one last tour around the store and after clearing out a small group trying to get into the pet food back stock bags they now had two fifty-five gallon drums half-full of micros. Jr. decided to make a call after that.
Inside the barrels it was pitch black, the wheels sent shock waves through the steel barrels ringing them like a gong with every bump and jostle. It stank of shit, piss, blood and death inside and the free floating dirt and food particles made it hard to breath enough as is but their combined weight started to crush the ones on the bottom. And of course there was their own personal brand of whining only added to their misery, cries of fear of the dark, lost mates, crushing weight and lost foals echoed to deafening levels. After what seemed like too many forevers the tops of the barrels were popped off flooding the inside with blinding light as the barrels rocked and tipped over into a large steel trough. Many hands reached into the trough, picking and sorting the viable ones and dropping them in a large long glass fish tank with a shallow layer of nutragel the rest tossed in the bio-waste bins alive or otherwise.
Gumball landed in the nutragel with a squishy plop along with several others and more being dropped in by the second. Shaking the gel off his relief of being out of the dark and back in a familiar environment was quickly replaced with a panicked search for his special friend. soon she was dropped in and once again the pair were reunited and they held each other tightly weeping over their lost foals. their grief was short lived when General Blueberry had shown up, looking somewhat happy to see a pair of familiar faces. But none had much time to catch up before the hands returned plucking them out of the tank with a dozen or so more and dropped into a box and carried off somewhere unknown.
“Alright Jimmie, think these little shits could pass as foals for your games?” Jr asked standing before the nummy nummy babbeh game console.
“They’re the right size but they’re a little fast for foals. dump these ones in and lets play a round to see.” Jimmie chuckled peering into the box.
the box was tipped over pouring the micros into the games holding pen, a variation of hungry hungry hippos from hell. With the push of a button the pen gate was opened and the sliding wall pushed them into the game zone, it slid shut and two of the ‘hippo’ heads came to life. they slid forward lunging at the micros, the heads lifting up revealing their razor sharp edges that slammed down over Peaches body cutting her in half. the other almost missed Gen. Blueberry taking his back leggies and tail, shrieking and peeping like an actual foal trying to drag himself away. his final sight was of Gumball hugging the remaining half of Peaches before the head came down over him cutting him in half to match his mate. reaching his tiny hoofie for Gumball the other head came down cutting it off and dragging his bloody body acroos the game floor depositing him in the collection bin.