NEVER GET ALONG WITH A BULLY

by Joseph “Gatorman” Kristoff and Jerimy “Marauder” Bass

Originally posted: August 27-September 30, 2007


1.


1) (At school. All the members of the Get Along Gang (bar Portia), Catchum, and Leland are seated at their desks, awaiting the return of their tests. Ms. Deering hands her graded test back to Dotty, then to Flora.)

Ms. Deering: Dotty, well done as always. 100%.

Dotty: Thank you, Ms. Deering.

Ms. Deering: Flora, you just missed out. 95%.

Flora: (snaps fingers as if to say, "darn!") Rats.

2) (Mrs. Deering looks at Catchum's test paper. she shakes her head and clucks her tongue before handing the paper to Catchum.)

Ms. Deering: Ohhhhhhh, Catchum...At least you tried. (the paper reads 65%.)

3) (Catchum rips the score off the test paper, sticks it in his mouth, and chews on it. Zipper and Bingo observe.)

Zipper: I heard somewhere that paper is full of fiber.

Bingo: Must be good for you, then.

4) (Zipper turns to Bingo and Montgomery.)

Zipper: If that's brain food, Catchum would be better off eating the whole thing!

(Bingo and Montgomery laugh. Catchum growls slightly.) 


2.


1) (At school. All the members of the Get Along Gang (bar Portia), Catchum, and Leland are seated at their desks, awaiting the return of their tests. Ms. Deering hands her graded test back to Dotty, then to Flora.)

Ms. Deering: Dotty, well done as always. 100%.

Dotty: Thank you, Ms. Deering.

Ms. Deering: Flora, you just missed out. 95%.

Flora: (snaps fingers as if to say, "darn!") Rats.

2) (Mrs. Deering looks at Catchum's test paper. she shakes her head and clucks her tongue before handing the paper to Catchum.)

Ms. Deering: Ohhhhhhh, Catchum...At least you tried. (the paper reads 65%.)

3) (Catchum rips the score off the test paper, sticks it in his mouth, and chews on it. Zipper and Bingo observe.)

Zipper: I heard somewhere that paper is full of fiber.

Bingo: Must be good for you, then.

4) (Zipper turns to Bingo and Montgomery.)

Zipper: If that's brain food, Catchum would be better off eating the whole thing!

(Bingo and Montgomery laugh. Catchum growls slightly.) 


3.


1) (The school hallway. Two friends—a skunk and cheetah—are blocking access to Catchum and Leland's lockers. They continue to loiter as Catchum starts to get sore.)

Catchum: Hey! What do you think you're doing?

2) (The skunk, named Roger Defoe, turns and sees Catchum call out.)

Roger: (casual, non-confrontational): No, no, no, my friend. It isn't what I think I'm doing. I know what I'm doing!

3) (The two loiterers resume doing nothing. Roger closes his eyes and whistles a tune. Catchum and Leland just wait for them to move.)

4) (Leland turns to Catchum.)

Leland: That didn't work, Catchum—

Catchum: (doesn't want to hear it) Quiet... 


4.


1) (The school hallway. Roger Defoe (a skunk) and his friend, Pete (a cheetah) block Catchum and Leland's lockers. Roger whistles a tune while loitering. Catchum and Leland want to get into their lockers. Although Catchum is growing impatient, he attempts to remain calm.)

Catchum: Can I please get into my locker?

2) (Roger turns to Catchum and grins widely.)

Roger: Mmmmmm. That's what I like. A young man who says "please." Why, you most certainly may. Pete? Step aside...

Pete: Okay, boss!

3) (They step aside, and Catchum and Leland finally access their lockers. Roger has his hands on his hips as he watches the two of them take out their backpacks.)

Roger: Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Roger Defoe, self-proclaimed bully extraordinare.

Pete: And cheat...and cad...and jerk...and—

4) (Roger, feeling Pete has said too much, thwaps his muzzle.)

Roger: Shush! 


5.


1) (The school hallway, by the lockers. Catchum and Leland are talking to two fellow bullies—Roger, a skunk, and Pete, a cheetah.)

Roger: Anyway...I'm thinking of having a few friends to talk to. Having Pete around isn't enough sometimes, you know?

Pete: Yep!

Roger: Wanna get some food?

Catchum: Sure!

2) (The four of them head off while Zipper, Rocco, and Rudyard look on from a distance. Zipper shudders.)

Zipper: Ohhh no. I have a feeling we're going to be in for a bit of trouble starting next week.

Rocco: I don't like the look of this one bit.

3) (Rudyard looks up, pondering, while Zipper and Rocco take their backpacks out from their lockers.)

Rudyard: I wonder how Catchum and Leland acted when they were young...I suppose they were nice enough. I still think there is a bit of good in them.

Zipper: (scoffs!) You can't be serious, Rudyard!

Rudyard: Oh, but I am, Zipper. They could be the sort of people you could have a spot of tea over—like Rocco!

4) (Rocco giggles, rolling his eyes at Rudyard's statement.)

Rocco: Although tea times aren't exactly my cup of tea. Get it? (winks)

Rudyard: (lame joke radar registering high levels, and his facial expression, a half-frown, tells it) You get one point for effort.

Rocco: Oops. Heh. 


6.


1) (Vic's Diner, located three blocks from the school. Catchum and Leland, seated on stools, are eating hamburgers, fries, and sodas. Roger eats a bowl of chili, while Pete eats a salad. The four of them are chatting.)

Roger: So, Catchum, tell me. I KNOW your name isn't really Catchum. What IS your real name?

Catchum: Well... if you must know...

2) (Catchum slams his eyes shut, turns away from Roger and grimaces, fearing...)

Catchum: (thinking) Please don't laugh please don't laugh please don't laugh... (then, turning to Roger and speaking) Emlyn.

3) (Roger nods slowly, smiling. Catchum breathes a sigh of relief to discover Roger didn't laugh.)

Roger: Innnnnteresting. How'd you get the name "Emlyn"?

Catchum: It came from my grandfather.

Roger: Are you proud of your name?

Catchum: Of course I am.

4) (Pete and Leland sip from their drinks as they listen to the conversation.)

Catchum: My grandparents were about the only people who cared for me. My dad left me when I was young, and Mom...she wasn't above telling me I was an accident sometimes. (sighs) 


7.


1) (At the diner, Catchum is telling Roger and Pete, two new friends, about his home life.)

Roger: Don't you tell her off sometimes?

Catchum: When I gather up enough courage, I do. But she doesn't care enough to listen. What about your parents?

Roger: Well, my parents are all right...they give me lots of things.

2) (Pete, Roger's friend, eagerly bobs his head up and down.)

Pete: Yep! I heard others say he's a spoiled twit—(his muzzle gets thwapped again by Roger.)

Roger: Dopehead. (to Catchum.) Please excuse my partner.

3) (Roger takes his wallet out of his pocket and pays the waiter. They start to rise from their seats.)

Catchum: So it looks like you and I come from opposite sides of the financial spectrum.

Roger: That's right. In fact, don't worry about paying. I'm doing it for you.

Catchum: Thanks!

Roger: Mmhmm. I shall see you again, say, Monday?

4) (Catchum nods. Roger and Pete leave the diner.)

Catchum: Yes, sir!

Roger: Well, take care. We must be going. Come, Pete.

Pete: (eagerly following him) Yes, boss!

5) (Leland waves goodbye. Catchum steps out and watches Roger and Pete walk home.)

Leland: Good people, eh, Catchum?

Catchum: (nods slightly) Yeah!

Leland: I got to get home as well...Mom will kill me if I come home later. (then, looks up) Catchum? Want to walk home with me?

Catchum: (smiling, nodding slowly) Sure, Leland.

6) (The two buddies walk home together, Catchum's arm wrapped around Leland.)


8.


1) (Monday, at school. Catchum and Leland walk toward their lockers, where they run into Roger and Pete, who have huge grins on their faces.)

Roger: Hello, gents.

Catchum: Hello, you two.

Pete: (bouncing eagerly around Catchum and Leland) Guess what we did! Guess what we did!

Roger: Hehe. Eaaaaaasy, Pete.

2) (Catchum and Leland smile, interested to hear what the two of them did.)

Leland: (to Catchum) I bet those two had a lot of fun!

Roger: Sure did. We confronted a girl in the second grade about her lunch money. Well, as all good girls do, she declined to give me some.

Catchum: Yeah?

Roger: So, I replied in my own special way.

3) (Roger flattens his left palm out, makes his right hand into a fist, and punches the palm.)

Roger: POW! Right in the kisser! Very cool, don't you think? I mean, an ambulance came and took her away!

4) (Catchum and Leland are in shock upon hearing of the incident. Their eyes widen, and their mouths hang open slightly.)

Catchum: Y...You aren't serious...are you, Roger? 


9.


1) (The school hallway. Roger and Pete boast of how they sent a second-grader to the hospital over lunch money. Leland and Catchum are in shock.)

Leland: But...but...she was only in the second grade. She's only eight. I think. I guess. (turns to Catchum and shrugs)

Roger: Eight, nine, seven, what's the difference? Catchum, Leland, I want my wallets filled and my marks easy.

2) (Catchum confronts Roger.)

Catchum: But I thought your parents were wealthy!

Roger: They are. I still get only $10 a week allowance, though! It doesn't matter. It's the thrill of the hunt. You gotta know your prey, boy!

3) (Catchum starts to grow angry. He walks a few steps away from Roger.)

Catchum: We may have stolen things, too, but at least we never beat anyone to get it! 


4) (Catchum hangs his head a little. He motions for Leland to go back to the shack with him.)

Catchum: I feel dirty now. Goodbye. C'mon, Leland.

Roger: Hey, where are YOU two cowards going?

Catchum: To do some heavy thinking. And, if I feel like it, a nice, long shower.

Leland: (sneering at Roger) Yeah. I'll have YOU know he hasn't bathed in two weeks!

Catchum: LELAND! 


10.


1) (The shack at Gummyfoot Swamp. Catchum and Leland are breathe sighs of sadness and regret, as they sum up everything they had done.)

Catchum: Leland...I'm starting to wonder why we bully now. I'm not really sure if it's worth it anymore.

Leland: All those times we had, Catchum...they're all coming back to me! I remember the time we TPed the Clubhouse Caboose...and the time you glued that beard to Woolma's face...and the time you filled Zipper's shoes with cement...

2) (Catchum starts to simmer a little, thinking Leland is carrying on more than he should.)

Catchum: (doesn't want to hear it) All right, Leland.

Leland: (starting to get carried away) Or the time you stuck a twenty-one of hearts in Pocus's magic deck of cards...or YOU spiking a bowl of punch with sour milk...

Catchum: Oh, why don't you STOP!

3) (Leland recalls another scheme.)

Leland: ...or, the time I posted a note saying the Caboose was under quarantine?

Catchum: There was just one flaw, though. (angrily) The Get Along Gang didn't buy the idea of an outbreak of the black plague!

Leland: Oh.

4) (Catchum's head is bowed. Leland sits on the ground, Indian-style, his head leaning against one of his arms.)

Catchum: (hoping to sweep clean his misdeeds) But never mind. That could've been US hurting that girl, and I don't like it.

Leland: Yeah...(whimper)

Catchum: (whimper)


11.


1) (Outside Gummyfoot Swamp. Rudyard and Rocco are heading towards the Clubhouse Caboose when they overhear the sound of Leland crying. They exchange glances, then approach a windowless panel.)

2) (Rudyard peers inside without being detected. Catchum is seen hugging a crying Leland. The lion is surprised.)

Rudyard: (whispering to Rocco) I'd never thought I'd see the day, Rocco, when Catchum and Leland felt sad over something. Come on.

Rocco: (nods)

3) (Rudyard knocks on the open door. Catchum and Leland look up.)

Rudyard: Good afternoon, Catchum, Leland...what's the matter?

Catchum: We found out our friend was the one who beat up the girl earlier today.

Rudyard: (turning to Rocco) So, that explains the ambulance that arrived in the middle of class...

Rocco: No kidding.

4) (Rudyard looks around at their dump of a shack, and does not feel like continuing the conversation there. He whispers something in Rocco's ear.)

Rocco: Sure. As long as it's iced!

Catchum: Huh? 


12.


1) (Catchum and Leland's shack in Gummyfoot Swamp. Catchum and Leland are surprised at what Rudyard is offering the two of them.)

Catchum: A...are you two serious? You're offering us tea at your place, Rudyard? But why? You never offered us tea before.

Rudyard: Well, you never asked me! (chuckles)

2) (Rudyard walks around the shack, taking a look around. Rocco helps Leland up.)

Rudyard: Catchum, do you have any idea how much you and Leland put us through ever since we met you?

Catchum: Quite a lot. I'm surprised you didn't just walk up to us and kick us in the stomach!

Rudyard: (chuckle)

3) (Rudyard walks back toward Catchum, facing him.)

Rudyard: Well, that is indeed true. You have given us a hard time...although we do recall the times when you and your friend helped out the community. Remember the time you cleaned up Green Meadow?

Catchum: (sarcasm) Gee, thanks, Rudyard. Now I'll never get those thoughts of my wearing an apron out of my head!

4) (Rudyard and Rocco start to walk out of the shack. They beckon Catchum and Leland with a wave.)

Rudyard: Hehe. Look, save the sarcasm until we get to my house. Come on! 


13.


1) (Rudyard's apartment. Rudyard serves Rocco a cup of tea on a saucer. Catchum and Leland, invited to tea by Rudyard, are sipping away.)

Rocco: (chuckles) 'Ey! No ice?

Rudyard: Whoops! Hehe. Sorry.

2) (As Rudyard uses a pair of tongs to place a small piece of ice in Rocco's cup, he looks in on Catchum and Leland.)

Rudyard: Getting back, now...you've bugged us for a long time. Why us?

Catchum: Well...you could amount it to jealousy.

Rocco: Jealous? What're ya talking about?

Catchum: I figured all of you came from good families...FUNCTIONING families. I mean, look at this place! It's a palace compared to what I have! My mother may have made me the croc I am, but there was another reason I singled you out, and that was it.

3) (Rudyard sighs, and shakes his head. Rocco feels there should be a little more sugar in his tea, and pours one spoonful of sugar into his tea and stirs.)

Rudyard: Well...that's not quite true. Not all of us are well off. What about Bingo? He isn't rich, but that doesn't make him any less happy. He has a loving family, and friends like us...

Catchum: If I had friends and a loving family, I'd be happy, too. But I DON'T. And it drives me to drink!

4) (Catchum grabs the teapot and starts to gulp all the tea down. Leland, Rudyard, and Rocco watch in amazement.)

Leland: Uhhh, Rudyard, I think you may want to remind Catchum where the bathroom is...

Rudyard: (sigh) I think I'd better! 


14.


1) (a hill, near the Clubhouse Caboose. Roger and Pete think about whom to hit up for money next. Roger rubs his temples.)

Roger: Erf. All this thinking is driving me batty. Think, Roger, THINK!

Pete: But, boss, my name ain't Roger...it's Pete!

Roger: (thwaps Pete's muzzle yet again) Squirrely-brain. (gasp!)

2) (Roger grins as he hears two female voices coming from the Clubhouse Caboose.)

Roger: Follow me, Pete.

Pete: (eagerly) Yes, boss!

3) (they peer inside a window panel of the Clubhouse Caboose. Flora and Lolly are inside, laying on their stomachs and reading from textbooks, tutoring each other. They are the only ones inside. All the others are home or somewhere else.)

Roger: (turning to Pete, whispering) That's Lolly Keane, the candyman's daughter...Pete, what if I were to tell you I could supplement my $10-a-week allowance with, say...one million dollars?

Pete: One million dollars? (whistle!)

Roger: Shhhh. Here's what we do. Play along and you'll get a small part. (cups hand over Pete's ear and whispers)

4) (Lolly dons her beret as she and Flora finish off a long tutoring session. They stand up.)

Lolly: Wow, what a day. But I LOVED it! Hard work does a squirrel good. Just ask my father.

Flora: You know what I could use after this? A glass of milk. I LOVE milk.

5) (Lolly opens the front door to the Caboose, unaware of what's about to happen.)

Lolly: (giggle!) Ohh Flora, you've been watching those public service announcements again, haven't you?

Flora: I guess I have!

6) (as they leave, two pairs of hands—one pair being Roger's, the other pair being Pete's—seize Lolly and Flora by the face. The two females scream.)

15.


1) (Roger's run-down wooden hideaway, half a mile from the Caboose. Roger and Pete have just abducted Lolly and Flora and are about to hold them up for ransom. They are seen tying Lolly's and Flora's hands behind their backs with rope. Lolly and Flora get a good look at their surroundings.)

Lolly: (sarcastic) Nice piece of real estate you have here. What model is this? Classical Outhouse?

Flora: (giggles!) Good one!

Roger: Grrrrrrr...

2) (Roger takes two pieces of duct tape and slaps it over the girls' mouths.)

Lolly/Flora: Mmphh!

Roger: Insolent little girls. Hope you like the nighttime, 'cause it's going to get pretty dark...

3) (Roger shoves Lolly and Flora into a closet, closes the door, and props a chair under the door to prevent the girls from breaking out.)

Roger: Nighty-night. (to Pete) Pete, my boy, now you get to help me make that ransom note!

Pete: (bouncing) Oh boy oh boy oh boy!

Roger: Got any scissors?

4) (Pete doesn't seem to have a pair of scissors on him. He shrugs to Roger.)

Pete: Oops. Guess I forgot!

Roger: (thwaps Pete's muzzle yet again) Hollow skull!

Pete: Oof.  


16.


1) (Outside Rudyard's apartment. Catchum, Leland, and Rocco thank Rudyard for the invite to tea.)

Catchum: It was great having tea with you, Rudyard. Thanks a lot!

Rudyard: Anytime. And we're glad you and Leland opened up to us. Listen, you know what I think? I think you'd make good members of the Get Along Gang.

2) (Catchum is surprised by Rudyard's comment. Immediately, he blushes many shades of red. Leland giggles.)

Catchum: After what we've done? You're kidding, right?

Rudyard: Nope. You're starting to be honest with us. I like that. Too bad you'll have to wait awhile, though, until the Gang get back together. Don't know when, though.

Rocco: And even when it does happen, it has to be a unanimous vote.

3) (Catchum nods, his smile fading some at the prospect of facing what appears to be a near-impossible vote in his eyes.)

Catchum: Oh. I see. Well, even if we don't get in...thanks anyway.

Leland: Thank you again!

Rocco: And remember, Rudyard...next time, I want ice in my tea!

4) (Rudyard chuckles. He puts a hand on Rocco's shoulder and pets it.)

Rudyard: Not only that, I'll make a pitcher just for you.

Rocco: Just don't expect me to drink it down in one gulp, as Catchum did!

Catchum: I don't care, really. Just make sure there's a bathroom nearby! 


17.


1-top) (Roger's hideaway. Pete and Roger are busy cutting up letters from magazines and newspapers and pasting them onto a piece of paper. It is an old-fashioned ransom note. While Pete enjoys his work, Roger cuts his finger with the scissors.)

Roger: OUCH!

1-bottom) (Roger growls. He smacks away all the magazines and newspapers, and takes out a fresh sheet of paper, and a pen.)

Roger: Forget this. This way is faster. (He begins to write.)

2) (Meanwhile, Lolly and Flora, who were abducted by Roger and Pete, are locked in a closet. Hands bound and mouths taped shut, they squirm over to the door and listen in.)

Roger: (off-panel) Dear Mr. Keane: We have kidnapped your daughter and her vixen friend. We are holding them both somewhere until a drop of money is made. My partner and I prefer the sum of $1 million. Meet at the Fourth Street alley and ask for "Booger." Don't even think about calling the police, or, to use the old kidnapping cliché, you will never see them again.

3) (Lolly and Flora gasp in horror, interpreting the last sentence to mean possible death. They look at each other, quaking in fear.)

Pete: (snickering) "Booger"?

Roger: Shut up, you dolt. That's just an alias. I don't want my real name to be used.

Pete: You aren't going to kill them, are you?

4) (Roger shakes his head. He does have a confident grin on his face, though.)

Roger: No, Pete. I'm not cruel. I never do that. Now, tossing them into a garbage barge en route to New York City...that's GENIUS! Hehehe!

18.


1) (The next day. Everyone, except Flora and Lolly, and Portia (the latter of which is in another classroom), file into class. Montgomery notices the two empty seats.)

Montgomery: Hmmm. Where did Lolly and Forget-Me-Not go? It isn't like them to be absent.

Dotty: Search me!

2) (Not long after, Ms. Deering walks into class, noticeably distressed.)

Ms. Deering: Class...I don't know how else to tell you this...but Lolly's father received a note saying she and Flora have been kidnapped.

3) (The entire class gasps loudly at this revelation. Bingo and Braker, their boyfriends, are in even bigger shock. They murmur amongst themselves.)

Bingo: WHAT?!

Braker: Flora's kidnapped...

Rudyard: But why?

Zipper: What the...?

Bernice: You're kidding me, right?

4) (Catchum is also in shock. He snaps out of it and thinks for a minute. He believes that if someone would punch a girl over lunch money, he may go further for much more...)

Catchum: Hmmmmm...


19.


1) (After school. Catchum and Leland wave over Rudyard and Rocco, who are on their way to the Clubhouse Caboose. They walk over to the two reptiles.)

Catchum: Rudyard! Rocco! Come here!

Rudyard: What is it, Catchum?

Catchum: Did any of you see Roger in school today? That skunk that wears a shirt and a tie? He has that dope of a cheetah with him.

2) (It suddenly comes to Rocco that he sees the two every day.)

Rocco: Say! Every day during lunch, I see the two of them stirring up trouble somewhere. They pull silly pranks. THAT'S Roger and his friend?

Catchum: Yeah. So were they in school?

Rudyard: We didn't see them in their usual seats. Why? You suspect they did it?

3) (Catchum nods. He walks up closer to them, then turns to Leland.)

Catchum: Leland, why did Roger beat up the second-grader?

Leland: For her money.

Catchum: (to Rocco and Rudyard) So why might Roger kidnap Lolly, you two?

4) (Rudyard and Rocco hit upon the answer immediately.)

Rudyard/Rocco: For her FATHER'S money!

Catchum: I suspect him...you two better tell the others what's going on. Leland, time to do a little shadowing.

Leland: I'm doing it already, Catchum. The sun's still out. See? (points to his shadow)

Catchum: (facepaws) No...  


20.


1) (An alley in downtown Green Meadow. Catchum and Leland keep a lookout for Roger, suspected of abducting Lolly and Flora. They see Roger come out of Vic's Diner. Roger begins to head back to the shack.)

Leland: (whispering) Psst. Catchum...

Catchum: (whispering) What?

Leland: (whispering, pointing to Roger) Him.

2-top) (Catchum and Leland follow Roger.)

2-bottom) (Roger leads Catchum and Leland to his shack. The reptiles quickly move to the side of the shack and crawl beneath the window panels to avoid capture.)

3) (Roger walks over to Pete. Catchum and Leland listen in.)

Roger: How're the two pawns holding up?

Pete: They're feeling a bit weak. Shouldn't we feed them?

Roger: Fine. Come with me to the store. We'll give them something.

4) (Roger and Pete get ready to head on out. Leland turns to Catchum.)

Leland: (whispering) The girls must be in there. Let's wait 'til they leave.

Catchum: (nods, whispering) Got it...  


21.


1) (Roger and Pete's shack. The two bullies walk out of the shack to get some food and water for their two captives, Flora and Lolly. Catchum and Leland are able to escape capture, and quickly walk inside the run-down dwelling.)

2) (Leland looks around, lifting up a coffee pot. Catchum punches Leland on the arm.)

Catchum: They're not in there, you dope!

Leland: Well, they might have a shrink ray or something.

Catchum: (withering) "Might have a shrink ray." COME ON!

3) (Catchum calls out.)

Catchum: FLORA! LOLLY! Where are you?

4) (Catchum and Leland hear two weak, muffled voices coming from the closet.)

5) (Catchum yanks away the chair that forces the door closed. Leland looks on.)

6) (Catchum opens the door. They react in horror to see the two girls bound up. The girls slowly look up, looking at Catchum with sad eyes, whining.)

Catchum: Darn...what have they done to you? 


22.


1) (Roger and Pete's shack. Catchum and Leland, two former friends of theirs, locate Flora and Lolly inside the closet. The two of them get to work freeing them. Leland carefully pulls the tape from Flora's mouth.)

Catchum: Are you okay?

Lolly/Flora: (shakes their heads no)

2) (The two reptiles attempt to get the girls to stand up, but the girls are so weak that they cannot do so.)

Leland: I don't think they can walk, Catchum.

Catchum: Well, we need to find something. Help me out.

3) (Catchum and Leland look around. They locate a red wagon sitting near the door. Meanwhile, Lolly and Flora are seated on the floor, shivering from the cold.)

Leland: I guess we'll have to get them in there.

Catchum: Yeah.

4) (Catchum picks up Flora and carries her to the wagon. Leland has trouble with Lolly. She wraps his arms around her shoulders and carefully drags her over there. The girls look at their rescuers, continuing to shiver.)

Catchum: This may be the last time we'll ever steal anything, Leland. Let's make the most of it. 


23.


1) (Roger and Pete's shack. Catchum and Leland lay Flora and Lolly down on their sides inside a red wagon. Leland feels Lolly's forehead.)

Leland: Catchum, they're cold. Feel them.

2) (Catchum kneels down and feels Flora's forehead. She is very cold. Catchum bows his head down, saddened.)

3-top) (Catchum takes off his orange jacket, leaving only his striped shirt on.)

3-bottom) (He covers the girls with the jacket, tucking the sleeves inside the wagon. The girls are seen shivering and crying.)

Catchum: (off-panel) Let's get them to a hospital before those two bums get back.

4) (Catchum pulls the wagon out of the shack. Leland follows.)

Catchum: Leland...I think we're going to be two different people after this is over... 


24.


1) (Downtown Green Meadow. Catchum and Leland are transporting Lolly and Flora by wagon to a hospital. They approach the automatic sliding doors at the entrance. The doors slide open, allowing them to enter.)

2) (Catchum explains to a nurse what just happened. Another nurse gets on the phone, contacting Schneider (Lolly's father) and Maurice (Flora's father). Two doctors lay the girls down on stretchers and wheel them off to an emergency room.)

3-top) (Catchum and Leland leave the hospital, carrying the wagon with them.)

3-bottom) (As they approach the Clubhouse Caboose, they abandon the wagon and start running there.)

4) (Catchum and Leland, both out of shape, pant heavily as they arrive at the Clubhouse Caboose, where the Gang is waiting on word of the girls' whereabouts.)

Catchum: Here we are...let's tell the others... 


25.


1) (The Clubhouse Caboose. Catchum and Leland are inside, giving the rest of the Gang the news on Flora and Lolly. Everyone is shocked to learn that the two reptiles found them.)

Braker: You found them?! Are they all right?

Bingo: How's Lolly?

Montgomery: How are they feeling?

2) (Catchum sighs, looking at everyone and replying.)

Catchum: I wish I could say so.  But they're so weak right now that they couldn't even open their mouths to speak.

Dotty: Well, who did it?

Catchum: It was those two thugs we thought were friends.

3) (Rocco growls. He walks up and faces the Gang.)

Rocco: Listen, all. If we're going to stop these guys, we're going to have to get along. Who's with me?

Rest of Gang: WE ARE!

4) (Catchum puts his left hand on Rocco's shoulder, smiling. Leland smiles as well.)

Catchum: For once in our lives...something we can agree on!  


26.


1) (Green Meadow. Catchum and Leland lead the gang towards a run-down shack where two bullies, former friends of Catchum and Leland, live when not at home with their parents. The gang try their best to control their anger. Not far away, Officer Growler is walking the streets of the town. He comes across the gang.)

2) (Zipper approaches Officer Growler and tells him what's going on.)

Zipper: Officer Growler, we found the two creeps who kidnapped Flora and Lolly!

Ofc. Growler: What?! Lead me to them!

3) (Growler takes out his communicator and contacts headquarters.)

Ofc. Growler: Growler to central. I'm on a dirt road off Vidalia Street, heading westbound towards the waterfront. I'm after the Keane-Descoteaux kidnappers. Send two backup officers.

Dispatcher: (on communicator) Copy that. Over.

4) (Catchum, Leland and the Gang continue off into the sunset, with Officer Growler following.) 


27.


1) (The rundown shack. Roger and Pete look at the open closet door. Roger shakes his head.)

Roger: Wonderful.

Pete: Gee, Roger...I wonder who'd sneak in and free them.

Roger: (glaring at Pete) Yeah, I wonder. What kind of stupid question is that? That crazy crocodile and loopy lizard, that's who.

2) (Then, the two of them hear commotion outside. They walk over to the door and peer out the window. An angry Get Along Gang approach the shack, with Officer Growler and two backup officers behind them.)

Roger: Uh-oh.

3) (They race over to the door and place a wooden plank against the door to keep it closed.)

4) (Catchum points to Roger and Pete upon recognizing them. Other members of the Gang growl furiously.)

Catchum: There they are! AFTER THEM! 


28.


1) (The shack. The Get Along Gang charge the door, trying to break it down. They are trying to get to two former friends of Catchum and Leland named Roger and Pete.)

2) (Roger and Pete have their backs against the wall, with nowhere else to go.)

Pete: Gee, Roger, looks like this has come to the breaking point, huh?

Roger: (thwaps Pete's muzzle) Porridge-head! Quiet!

3) (The gang break the door down. Several of them—Catchum, Leland, Montgomery and Zipper—advance slowly on the two, snarling. The two abductors look at them nervously.)

Roger: Uhhhhhhhh, hi?

Catchum: (slow, measured words) Shut. Up.

4) (Catchum then walks up to Roger, his snout nearly pressing against the skunk's.)

Catchum: All right, you two, give it up. We found those girls right here in this shack, and we freed them.

Roger: (speaking out loud, playing innocent) Girls? What girls? Why, whatever do you mean, Catchum? I didn't do a thing!

5) (Roger puts his hands on his hips, looking at the others with sheer contempt. Meanwhile, Portia and Bernice see something of interest.)

Catchum: Don't play innocent with me. We found them in the closet, cold and weak.

Roger: Hm! They must have been playing around or something. How can you prove we did anything? You have nothing on us!

6) (Just then, Bernice holds up the aborted ransom note she and Portia found on the floor—the one Roger swatted away after cutting his finger making it. Portia's finger points directly to the skunk. Roger begins sweating.)

Portia: Oh, really now?

Roger: Uhhhhhm...uhhhhh...

29.


1) (The shack. Officer Growler and his two backup officers proceed to arrest Roger and Pete on kidnapping charges. Catchum, Leland, and Montgomery look on.)

Ofc. Growler: Place your hands against the wall, please.

2) (Montgomery turns to Dotty.)

Montgomery: We'd better see if Flora and Lolly are all right!

Dotty: Got it!

3) (The Gang rush over to the hospital. Catchum and Leland trail behind the others, if only to see Roger and Pete being carried away in handcuffs by the officers.)

Pete: This is all your fault! Next time we should stick to taking candy away from babies!

Roger: "Taking candy away from babies"? Ohhh, how I HATE that line!

4) (Roger tries to thwap Pete's muzzle one last time, but can't, due to the handcuffs. Roger growls as Pete smiles, triumphantly.)

Pete: Ha-HA! Score one point for me! You lose, bub!

Roger: You dirty little... 


30.


1) (The Green Meadow Memorial Hospital. The Get Along Gang, Schneider (Lolly's father), Maurice (Flora's father), Catchum and Leland all await to hear the condition of Flora and Lolly from a doctor. Dr. Stanley Willowby, a hyena, breaks the news.)

Dr. Willowby: The situation isn't as serious as it might have been: Mild dehydration and stage one hypothermia—nothing plenty of fluids and a few warm blankets can't fix.

2) (Their parents breathe sighs of relief.)

Dr. Willowby: Well, Mr. Keane, Mr. Descoteaux...you may see your daughters, but they're probably asleep, to try to remain quiet.

3) (While the parents and the Gang go to meet the girls, Catchum and Leland trail behind.)

Leland: Oh, Catchum, I'm so happy! The girls are okay!

Catchum: (half-interested) Glad to hear...but I don't know why THAT doctor had to tell us.

Leland: What's the matter?

4) (He turns to Leland, slightly peeved.)

Catchum: (dripping with sarcasm) Nothing, Leland, nothing. I guess you couldn't overhear him tell someone with kidney failure, "Son, it looks like your kidneys got an "F" in Life Studies!" Weirdo. 


31.


1) (A hospital room. Flora and Lolly are laying in hospital beds, clad in hospital gowns and covered up with blankets. They are still weak but are able to talk and move a little. Schneider grips Lolly's hand, while Maurice hugs Flora. The Gang, Catchum, and Leland look on.)

Maurice: My dear daughter...how are you feeling?

Flora: I'm feeling a little better. I could go for a nice, juicy hamburger right about now, though.

2) (While they continue to speak, the rest of the gang huddle into a conversation. Catchum and Leland are curious as to why they are huddling.)

Maurice: (chuckling) I'm afraid not. Your body won't be able to accept solid foods yet. We'll give you some ice cream, though.

Flora: (soft giggle) On second thought, forget the hamburger!

Lolly: Indeed. I'll get used to the taste of puréed acorns in due time.

3) (Montgomery turns to Catchum and puts a hand on his shoulder.)

Montgomery: I'd think you'd better go on home now, Catchum. We're going to hold an impromptu gang meeting.

Catchum: All right...come on, Leland, let's go...

Montgomery: And guys?

4) (Montgomery smiles some more.)

Montgomery: Come over to the Caboose tomorrow and make yourselves at home!

Catchum: (beaming with excitement) You mean it?

Montgomery: Sure! We have to repay you somehow for rescuing our friends. And that's only the beginning... 


32.


1) (The Clubhouse Caboose, the next afternoon. Catchum and Leland carry their backpacks inside with them. They look around the place in awe, for some reason.)

Catchum: Amazing, Leland...the first time I haven't had the urge to swipe the Caboose.

Leland: Yeah...what do you think of this place, though?

Catchum: Bleh. Could be better. But I don't care.

2) (Catchum sits down on the couch. Leland sits on the leg of the couch.)

Catchum: You know something, Leland?

Leland: Oh, I know lots of things, Catchum.

Catchum: Well, here's another thing you'll know soon. And I want you to remember this.

3) (He wraps an arm around Leland. The lizard flickers his tongue.)

Catchum: I want you to know that even though I yell at you sometimes...listen. What I am trying to tell you is that, no matter what I say to you, that doesn't mean I don't care about you. You're really a great friend.

Leland: Awww, Catchum.

Catchum: Listen, I want to hug you, but I'm dying to know. Why did you become my friend to begin with if you knew how big of a jerk I was?

4) (Leland shrugs.)

Leland: Easy. I didn't know you were a jerk. I just knew you wanted a friend.

Catchum: Just for that, you get a bearhug! (gives Leland a very tight, squeezing hug)

Leland: Grrkk...choking...me...(trill!)

Catchum: Hehe. You bet I am. 


33.


1) (The Clubhouse Caboose. While Catchum and Leland are resting up, the door opens. The entire Get Along Gang comes in, cheerful. Dotty and Zipper pull a wagon inside containing lots of gift-wrapped presents.)

Gang: SURPRISE!

Catchum: (beaming) Hello there!

2) (Flora and Lolly rush up to embrace the two reptiles. The vixen is holding a bouquet of roses in her left hand.)

Leland: (trills softly) How are you two feeling?

Lolly: Just fine. You know, puréed acorns are actually very tasty. For some reason it tastes sweeter!

Catchum: Hehe.

3) (Flora hands Catchum the bouquet of roses. Catchum looks at Flora and smiles gently.)

Catchum: Flora...thank you very much...

Flora: No. Thank YOU, Emlyn.

Catchum: (surprised) "Emlyn"? How did—but—how on earth did you know my real name?

4) (Catchum then realizes. He looks at Rudyard and Rocco with a smirk on his face. Rudyard and Rocco play innocent.)

Rudyard: Hey, we had to do it sometime.

Rocco: Why be proud of your name if you can't share it with your friends?

Catchum: Pfft. Silly. 


34.


1) (The Clubhouse Caboose. Catchum and Leland are snacking on chocolate, a gift from Lolly and Schneider. There is a piece of paper on the floor with a check attached—a citation from Officer Growler, along with reward money. There is also a thank-you card from the gang. The Gang look on, smiling.)

Catchum and Leland: Mmmmmmmmm...

Catchum: That's good chocolate.

Montgomery: Good, huh?

Leland: Mmmhmm!

2) (Montgomery approaches Catchum and puts a hand on his shoulder. With his other hand, he points to a sign that says "MEMBERS ONLY" in capital letters.)

Montgomery: Well, there's something even better. See that sign over there?

Catchum: (reads) "Members only."

Montgomery: That's right.

3-top) (Dotty presents two pieces of paper, wrapped up into cylinders, tied with rubber bands.)

Montgomery: Unwrap them, and read them carefully. I'm not telling you what it is, so go ahead.

3-bottom) (Catchum and Leland unwrap the bands from the papers and unroll them.)

4) (Catchum and Leland gasp loudly in surprise when they find out what those papers are...) 


35.


(The Clubhouse Caboose. Catchum and Leland are in shock as to the gift Montgomery and Dotty gave them.)

Catchum: Membership into the Get Along Gang...

(Leland soon becomes excited, bouncing around. As for Catchum, however, he looks at the Gang he and his partner had tormented to no end. The crocodile, clutching the membership certificate in his right hand, sits at the table, puts his head down, covers his eyes, and begins to sob quietly.)

 I...I can't accept this.

(Montgomery walks over to Catchum and puts a hand on his shoulder.)

Montgomery: Catchum, you're a hero. Certainly you deserve a chance to be in our gang.

(Other members of the GAG implore Catchum to accept the offer. Catchum is still crying. He shakes his head no in response to Montgomery's remark. Dotty then walks up to the crocodile.)

Dotty: Would it make you feel better if you apologized?

(Catchum nods slowly. He rises from his chair.  He sniffles as he addresses the entire gang.)

Catchum: (sniff) I'm...I'm sorry. (he takes a look at Leland) I know I've been a jerk to you guys. I was jealous because of the lives you led, while I drew the short stick and wound up with a mother I don't want anymore. I've picked up her nasty habits, and I should have stopped, but I didn't. And I even had a follower who wanted someone to look up to. He got someone who lied, cheated, and stole to get what he wanted. That someone is me.

(The Gang listen carefully. Catchum walks up to Leland and hugs him tightly. Leland returns the hug.)

Leland, will you forgive me?

(Leland nods, smiling. He gently rubs the back of Catchum's head.)

Leland: Yes, Catchum, I do.

Catchum: (turning to the gang) And will all of you forgive me?

Rest of GAG: We do!

(Catchum walks up to Montgomery and faces him.)

Catchum: Then, Montgomery...

Montgomery: Yes?

(He extends a hand, expecting a handshake.)

Catchum: We accept!

(Catchum smiles as he and Montgomery shake hands. The others cheer and applaud. Catchum and Leland are now members of the Get Along Gang!)
________________________________

(Later that day, the sixteen members of the Get Along Gang take a nap, worn out from the partying. Braker is clutching Flora. Dotty leans on Montgomery as the moose lays against the wooden wall of the Clubhouse Caboose. Catchum and Leland, however, get the best place to nap: Catchum lays right on the couch, with Leland napping on top of Catchum. Leland's arms are wrapped around Catchum's neck, hugging him, while Catchum gently rubs Leland's back with his right hand. They know that no matter what happens, they will always be best friends.

What lies ahead for the Get Along Gang remains to be seen. Together they will tackle high school, adolescence, college, and eventually, marriage. Even though they will experience changes in their lives, one thing is for certain: this group of creatures will continue to do what's best for the community, simply by getting along.)

THE END