A Day at the Hornblower Café
by Natalie and friends!

It was a beautiful night at the Hornblower Cafe. I was having a date with
my dearest love, Archie Kennedy. Music played softly in the background when
suddenly, in burst Horatio, with Act Lt. PJ, Caitren, DJ, Skihee, Lady M,
and SSR in his wake. Archie stood up in surprise.
"Horatio? What are you doing?" he asked.
Horatio looked up and threw up his hands helplessly. "I don't know. I
promised all these ladies dates, and then they shortened my shore leave to
one day so I had to take them all tonight. I tried to arrange different
times, but somehow they were all too eager and arrived at the same time!
Archie, what am I to do?"
Archie shook his head. "Just trust you, my dear Horatio, to get into
such a quandary. I thought you were a planning man," he said with the
winsome way he had.
Horatio just looked more helpless.
Suddenly I cleared my throat. "Um, Horatio?"
He glanced at me. "Oh no!"
I smiled. "That's all right, I'll stay with Archie the rest of the
night."
Horatio mumbled something. It sounded like "Well, at least there's one
gotten rid of" but it couldn't have been. Meanwhile, all the ladies in his
wake just stood there smiling at him. I don't think they noticed anything we
were saying.
Archie looked at me puzzled. "You had a date with Horatio too?!?"
Caught, I stammered, "Oh no...um...just...we...well, I...um..."
Archie shook his head. "One of these days you must make up your mind."
"Oh I have I have," I cried. "I choose you! Please don't leave me!"
Archie got up. "I must go in any case. I have an appointment with Sue N.
I will see you soon, madam." He bowed to me, said "good luck to Horatio, and
left the rest of us standing there in silenceÖ

Horatio clasped his hands behind his back. . .
Author: DJ
looking rather uncomfortable. Beads of sweat graced his forehead as all
of us just stood there in front of him, strained smiles now leaving our
faces.
He cleared his throat. "Well. . .it would seem we have a bit of a
predicament here". "Yes, we certainly do, Horatio!" I sniped, glaring at
Caitren who had somehow managed to sneak around and stand right beside him,
her arm now cozily linked with his. She smiled beguilingly up at him, then
turned to me, made a face and stuck out her tongue! As she did so, Act. Lt.
PJ gave her a hip check that sent her flying right into Skihee. "Ladies,
please!!!" Horatio pleaded in vain.
Skihee helplessly stumbled backward, arms flailing, and landed soundly
on her rump next to the hearth. She just sat there staring up at us, her
mouth a round "O" of surprise. Lady M and SSR quickly rushed over and helped
her to her feet.
Meanwhile, Act. Lt. PJ had taken Caitren's place beside Horatio, looking
very much like the cat that ate the canary.
NL had been standing there quietly seething, but she could take it no
longer. "HE'S MINE!!!" she yelled, her hand on her hips. Well, that was the
straw the broke the camel's back - all six of us began screaming and
ranting, stomping our feet like children. Poor Horatio just stood there,
looking at us helplessly.
Just then a commanding voice boomed from the open doorway. "HORATIO!!
WHAT IN GOD'S NAME IS GOING ON IN HERE?!!!" I spun around to see the dashing
Captain Pellew standing there, glaring at Horatio. . .

TITLE:"Sir!" Horatio stammered.
Author: NL
"I...I can explain sir. Th...These...er...ladies followed me here into
the cafe...I..."
"Mr. Hornblower, this is most ungentlemanly conduct. What do you mean by
treating these ladies so violently?"
"Sir, I beg your pardon, they...did it amongst themselves."
"Troth sir!" roared Pellew. "What do you mean by telling such lies man?"

TITLE: FOOD FIGHT!...
Author: Sea Spot Run
....screeched acting Lt. PJ as she picked up a large treacle tart from a
nearby table and flung it straight at Miss Fusbyface's fusby face.
"Oooooh....you shameless hussy", cried Miss F. and struck her smartly in
the eye with a French Baguette. Caitren clung tightly to Horatio, but she
was so short she only reached to his waist and her frantic clawing only
served to pop the buttons off the front of his knee breeches.
"Bugger!" shouted Horatio as his pants came down around his ankles.
"NOOOO..." as several of the ladies at nearby tables began to fan themselves
vigorously, then swoon.
"Cover yourself, man!" shouted Capt. Pellew! "There are ladies present.
Well, there are females present at any rate!"
"Oh Captain, SAVE ME!" cooed Miss SSR as she flung her arms around his
sturdy torso and mashed her breasts into his chest staring up into his
weathered, yet oddly attractive face and fluttering her lashes. "I'm
lactose-intolerant!" For sure enough, acting Lt. PJ was now threatening her
with a blancmange and some clotted cream.
"Oh, Miss SSR, you are the only one here with a lick of sense. Come back
to the Indy with me and I will make you my own." said the Captain, as he
lowered his face to lick the splattered remains of a raspberry fool off of
Miss SSR's daintily upturned nose.

suddenly I intervened...
Author: NL
she ran in front of the retreating Horatio.
"Horatio! WHere do you think you're going? Back to the ship? With this
brazen hussy?"
"Brazen hussy!" yelled SSR, wiping off rasberry cream so she could see
the intruder more clearly. "Out of our way. Horatio has chosen ME!"
"Never!" I cried. "Horatio, you are not a man to break promises! You
have promised me a date!"
Horatio stood, flustered and speechless.
I ran to the captain. "Oh sir, sir! He's treating me in the most
cavalier manner! He has broken his promise to me and now that brazen hussy
is trying to carry him off the ship!"
"Don't you call me that again!" yelled SSR over her shoulder. "Foolish
girl! If you come any closer I'll call you a MARIETTE!!!"
"AH! You dare call me the insult of insults! Captain, do something!"
Miss Fusbyface pulled him aside. "Dear Edward is mine for tonight. Do
not bother us. come Edward."
Just then DJ ran up and grabbed the captain's other arm. "sir sir," she
pleaded. "can you not see how one of your men is being molested! Please stop
him!"
"I can't do anything for you ladies. Er...Mr. Hornblower will figure
this out at his own discretion."
"You..." seethed DJ. She picked up a remainder of an apple pie and
smudged it right in Pellew's face. Miss F. screamed...

Title: The Captain just stood there. . .
Author: DJ
blobs of smashed apple and crust dripping from his face onto his freshly
pressed uniform. My jaw dropped as I realized what I had just done. "Oh,
Captain Pellew", I pleaded. . . "I dont know what came over me. . .I really
am sorry. . .I cant. . .I. .I. . ." my fading words became nothing more than
a series of tiny squeaks. Then all was silent in the room. The only sound to
be heard was the remains of the pie falling onto the floor, making a gooey
puddle about the Captain's feet.
Something must have snapped Captain Pellew's mind just then, for he was
upon me in an instant. His eyes bulging from their sockets, he snatched me
up and held me high in the air for one horrible moment. "Do it, Edward, do
it!" screeched SSR who was jumping up and down, clapping her hands. Then,
SQUOOSH - I found myself sitting on top of what had once been a very nice
strawberry shortcake.
I just sat there, whipped cream soaking my pantaloons. Completely and
utterly embarrased, I glanced about the room. NL was desperately trying not
to laugh. She had both hands over her mouth, cheeks puffed out on both sides
as if she were about to burst. SSR just stood there with a very smug smile
on her face. Caitren and PJ were frozen in place, staring. Both had a
treacle tart in hand, arms raised, ready to throw. Their victims, Lady M and
Miss F, were crouching behind the sofa, baguettes at the ready. Eliza was in
the corner, shielding herself with a large bread basket.
But where was Horatio?. . .

Title:we all turned to the door...
Author: NL
to see Horatio's retreating form.
"Stop him!" I cried, forgetting to laugh at DJ's ruined pantaloons. I
threw aside the cream puff I was clutching and ran after him. SSR had by now
made a hasty retreat to the ship. Caitren and PJ dropped their tarts and ran
after Horatio too. DJ came flying from the other direction, after wiping
herself as best she could. They all landed (gracefully) on Horatio at the
same time.
"Oof!" said Horatio as he valiantly tried to stand up under the
pressure. "Ladies! Please! My arms, nooo! Ow, no, they're long enough! No,
not my legs. Please stop pulling ladies!"
They continued pulling. By now, Lady M and Skihee had joined the fray.
Miss F stood and continued screaming. Suddenly there was a humongous crash!
Horatio had tripped and fallen against the punch bowl. The bowl came down,
splashing punch everywhere, including Pellew's new uneeeform. At the same
moment, Caitren, who had been clutching Horatio's leg,gave an extra-hard
pull. Down Horatio came, sliding on the punch, to land right smack in the
middle of a huge cake that had been made for a celebration the next day.
Frosting flew everywhere and...

Title: and everyone just lay there panting. . .
Author: DJ
completely exhausted from our antics. Then, we heard someone calling
Horatio's name. The window was open, and from the street below a woman with
a thick french accent was yelling, "Horatio! "Horatio! Where for art thou,
Horatio?!" A look of utter shock passed over Horatio's face. "Yoo Hoo!
Horatio, mon petite escargot!! Where are you?!!" called the voice again.
"It can't be!!" Horatio cried as he lept up, his lovely posterior now
completely covered with frosting. We watched, dazed, as he ran to the
window, slipping and sliding on the mess we had made. "Noooooooo!!" we all
screamed in unison. Horatio stuck his head out the window. "MARIETTE!!!" he
yelled, "It IS you!!". With that he climbed out of the window, grabbing on
to the trellis outside. He turned to us briefly and said "Farewell, dear
ladies!". Then he was gone.
NL managed to get her wits about her first. She scrambled sloppily to
her feet, slipped in a puddle of jelly and landed soundly on top of Captain
Pellew who let out a mighty "WHOOOF". She was up again in an instant, headed
for the door. She was moving fast but turned to us and yelled "MOVE IT OR
LOSE IT, LADIES!!". With that, the rest of us struggled to our feet, lept
over the Captain who was lying there like a beached whale, and headed out
the door. Caitren lead the way with Lady M, myself, Miss Fusbyface and Eliza
following close behind. SSR picked herself up out of mess and looked down at
the Captain. "I must go now, dear Edward.", she cooed. "I really have to see
how this turns out!"
Down the hall we sped, tripping over each other as we went. We burst out
of the Cafe's entrance and looked around desperately for Horatio. There he
was in the middle of the street, and there SHE was. . .the dreaded, the
awful, the wretched, MARIETTE!!! But wait a minute. What was this? They were
being accosted by yet another group of hostile women. From what I could see
through the whipped cream that was obscuring my vision, it was none other
than Kelly, LynM and Barbara Kay. . .

Title: Could it be?
Author: NL

Is it she?
OH NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!! IT WAS INDEED MARIETTE!!! What on earth were
the ladies to do now? It looked like a serious confrontation. Mariette,
whose constitution had never been very strong, clung to Horatio at the sight
of all these hostile ladies.
"Horaaaaaaaatio! pwotect meee fwom zeees laaddieees!" she begged.
"I...I will try my best," Horatio stammered, muttering "If only the rest
of these...females were as weak as Mariette."
They all crowded around Horatio and Mariette, murder in their eyes.
"I thought she died," I whispered. "Blown to pieces!"


Title: Horatio looked down at Mariette. . .
Author: DJ
"Yes, I thought you had been blown to smithereens as well.", he said.
"Tell me, dearest. . .how is it you are alive?". Mariette looked up at
Horatio and shamelessly batted her eyelashes. "Well, you zee, afteer I waz
shot and you left me for dead on zee bweege, zum lovely Frwench soldieers
came along and found me. Zhey zaw zhat I was still breethzing and took me
wiz zhem. Zhey nursed me back to health." She smiled seductively up at
Horatio.
"TELL HIM WHAT HAPPENED NEXT, LITTLE MISS FRENCHIE!!!", NL shouted,
shoving her way through the gaggle of women and giving Mariette a shot in
the arm. "Oooo!!!", Mariette squealed, trying desperately to hide behind
Horatio. "Whateveer do you mean, you nasty woman?" she mewled.
"YOU KNOW EXACTLY WHAT SHE'S TALKING ABOUT!!", I chimed in. I turned to
Horatio. "My dear Horatio, you should know what this little tart has been up
to the past few months. You see, NL and I ran into a few French soldiers
ourselves a while back when we were. . .oh, never mind that part. . .anyway,
they told us what became of Mariette after she was rescued from the bridge."
Horatio looked at me quizzically.
"Go ahead, Mariette! Either you tell him, or we will!", I spat.
"Oh, Howatio!", Mariette sobbed. "I zee zhat I 'av no shoice but to tell
you!" Horatio took her face in his hands. "You can tell me anything, my
dear.", he whispered lovingly. We all rolled our eyes.
"Well, you zee, after zee soldieers nursed me back to health, I zort of.
. .I . . .well. . .", she stammered. "SPIT IT OUT, SISTER!", Caitren yelled.
"Oooooh!" Mariette cried, fiddling nervously with the brass buttons on
Horatio's coat. She continued. "Well, you see, I zort of became zeir, how do
you zay?. . .playzing?"
Horatio looked confused. "Huh?" "Playzing? What in God's name is a
playzing", he questioned.
"PlayTHING!!, PlayTHING!!!, YOU DUMMY!!", SSR screamed in his ear.
Horatio's jaw dropped. "WHAT!!!!" he bellowed. Mariette backed away.
"YOU BECAME THEIR PLAYZING...I MEAN THEIR PLAYTHING???!!!". He took a step
toward Mariette and. . .

Title: You...
Author:NL

brazen wench!" Horatio cried. "Insolent hussy!"
"Oh nooooooooooooo" begged Mariette. "dinnot bee angweee wi meee,
Howaaaatio! I could not heeelp myself! I wazzz..."
"How could you be so unfaithful to me? your only true lover?"
"But you hed a fwing wi zee doochess lady!" whined Mariette.
"Fwing? a what?"
"FLING, DUMMY!" hollered SSR.
"Fwing? a what? Are you saying I had a fling?"
"Nooo, pleazzzze Howaaatio!" Mariette cried, wrapping herself tightly
around him despite the stawberry cream and frosting that was getting on her
dishrag dress.
"Ha!" sneered I to DJ. "We sure got her this time!"
"Yes," said DJ. "But whatever happened to the explosives? They were
supposed to be enough to blow her little frame up."
"I can't believe you Mariette. After all your righteuos teachings too!"
Horatio disgustedly pushed her off his legs along with a mound of chocolate
pudding.
"I weel not do eet again, I pwomise!"
"Get off that leg!" said Caitren, "It's mine!"
"Nonono! HOwaaatio! you see how zees leddies awe twying to hurt me!"
"How were you two so convenient to have been among French soldiers when
SHE was there?" asked Kelly.
"None of your business," snapped DJ..."Let's get rid of this little
French tart first."
"Fwench tart?" asked a puzzled Mariette. "you mean zees strawbewwy cake
on Howaatio's bottom? No, eet eez an English tart. I..."

Title: "A TART IS A TART!!". . .
Author: DJ

I screamed in Mariette's face. "If it looks like a tart, smells like a
tart and is sickly sweet like a tart - you can bet it's a tart! And that is
exactly what you are, MISS PRISS!!", I finished hotly.
Mariette continued backing away. "And you know what can happen to a
tart, don't you?", sneered Kelly as she began to stalk menacingly toward
her. "YOU CAN SQUASH THEM!!", she cried as she lunged at Mariette.
Mariette backpedaled awkwardly, arms flailing about. "Oooooooooh, pweese
help me Horwatiooooooo!" she pleaded. And with that, she fell backward and
landed with a PLOP! in the middle of a big, sloppy mud puddle.
Hysterical laughter burst forth from the mob of crazed women. Even
Horatio let out a huge snort of laughter, which he quickly pretended was a
sneeze. Mariette just sat there with her mouth hanging open, covered with
mud.
"OH! Poor Miss Frenchie fell down and went BOOM!", I chortled happily,
slapping NL heartily on the back. "What a pity!", NL replied. "The poor
thing is such a mess - maybe we should help her get cleaned up? Come on,
what do you say, girls?!", she cried.
Mariette screamed as SSR sprang forward and grabbed her left ankle.
Kelly rushed in and grabbed the right one. LynM, who had been fairly
reserved up until then, let out a surprising "WHOOP" of joy, bullied her way
through the crowd and took hold of one arm. Miss Fusbyface pushed past
Horatio and grabbed the other arm.
"THIS WAY, MY BEAUTIES!!", NL cheered, motioning for them to follow her
toward the end of the pier. "Oooooh no! Nooooo!", screamed Mariette as she
thrashed about in vain. NL and I led the way, doing a nice little
jiggity-jig as we went.
We arrived at the end of the pier. "OK, Ladies! Are you ready?!", I
shouted. "YESSSSSS!!!!", they yelled in reply. "OK!", NL commanded. "ONE
FROGGY WOGGY!" - and they swung Mariette over the water and back. "TWO
FROGGY WOGGY!" - forward and back again. "THREEEEEEEEE!!!" she screamed
joyfully as the ladies let go.
Mariette twisted and turned in midair and came down with a very
satisfying SMACK in the water

She came up spluttering and . . .

Title: burst into tears!
Author: NL

Horatio was desperately trying not to burst out laughing; in fact, he
tried so hard that he was starting to cry.
"Howaaaaaaaaaatio!" Mariette wailed. "HOWAAAAAAATIO!!!"
"It's ok...dear...you're...fine," he choked out. "I won't...hurt...you."
"No, Howaaatio! Eet eez not yoooo I feaw, eet eez zees place! And zees
poople!!! Oh take me away fwom zem! I don't likeeee them!"
"Well buddy," I laughed, "Lemme tell you hear right now, YOU are in the
wrong place!"
"Ya!" joined in DJ. "ZEEEES is NOT FRANCE, DO YOU HEAR? You ain't gonna
find Frenchies to play here with YOU!"
Suddenly, Mariette seemed to remember something. She screamed
"HOWAAAATIO!!! I juzt wemembered! I can't sweeeeem!!! HELP ME!!!" She
started thrashing wildly around.
Horatio was still choking. "Ladies, ...I beg...of you...please...pull
her..out."
"Well," said SSR, batting her eyelashes, "if you insist, love."
"Don't call him 'luv.' He ain't yours," hissed Kelly.
"Oh yes he is!"
"NO WAY!" yelled LynM, again shocked out of her usual reservation.
The ladies crowded around each other and Horatio again.
"AIYEEEEE!!! I DROWNING!!! HOWAAAATIO!!! Fiwst I blow up into zeeelion
peezes, zen I become big wet sopping feeesh foooood! HELP!!!"
"Ladies!" Horatio cried. "Please, fish her out."
We sighed, momentarily interrupted. "All right Horatio. Common, let's
get the fish."
"Ack, zey call me feesh!"
"You called yourself that sister," hissed Caitren.
We pulled her out, exceedingly dirty. She was dripping wet, but the
water had not sufficed to wash off the mud off her ragged posterior nor the
strawberry frosting on her dishrag dress.
To our infinite surprise, she was angry! We didn't know she was capable
of such strong emotions.
"I-" she gasped, "I eem not YOUR playzing! Woyalist or Wepublicans, I
weel get you for zees!"

We raised our eyebrows as she headed toward us...

Title: "YOU ARE ALL A BUNSH OF. . .
Author: DJ

PEEEEGS!", Mariette spat as she slogged menacingly toward us. "And you,
Howatio! Zust what kind of man are you to let zhem to zis to me!?"
Her eyes flamed with anger! Her face turned red!
Then something truly bizarre began to happen. "Geeze! What the heck.
. .?" NL murmured. We all stared in amazement. Mariette's already puffy lips
were beginning to swell. In just a few seconds they were double, no. .
.triple, their normal size!
Mariette stopped in mid stride. "What ees wrong wiz all of you? Why
are you staring at me like zat wubba wabbu wab wubbu?!", she burbled. Her
lips were now so huge she could no longer speak! "Wubbu wa wobo wubba!", she
cried as she realized what was happening. In a matter of seconds, her lips
had grown to the size of two hockey pucks!
"I KNEW IT! I KNEW IT!!", I yelled, pointing at Mariette. "I told
you guys she had her lips injected with collagen so they would look pouty!
They must have reacted to the salt water!" (please note this statement has
no basis in scientific fact).
Mariette tried to cover her face with her hands, but it was no good.
Her lips had swelled to the size of two frisbees! We all just stood there
gawking at her, not knowing what to do next.

Then Horatio cleared his throat. . .

Title: and opened his mouth...
Author: NL

But no sound came forth save a small squawk.

We all stared, a shocked and silent crowd. Horatio had his eyes open the
widest we had ever seen.
Suddenly, there was a squeak. We all turned around to look at DJ, who was
covering her mouth, suppresing a fit of giggles. Well, that set us all off,
and, before long, we were all giggling hysterically while Mariette continued
to make inarticulate sounds through her blown-up lips. Meanwhile, Horatio's
jaw had gradually dropped wider and wider until his mouth was almost as big
as Maritte's lips.
"Mariette?" he finally squawked cautiously.
"Bubah,wablah,wabobabo," she said.
"Bubah, wablah, wabobabo," mimicked the mob of ladies. We all roared
with laughter again.
"Ooh mee deeaaars," I drawled, "Zees eez quite a zight to zee!"
"I always knew there was something funny about the way she pouted
her lips!" crowed Skihee exultantly.
"Yes!" chimed in Kelly. "Just look at her now. We won't be trying to
smush anyone's nose while kissing now for awhile, right Miss Frenchie?"
Mariette started crying. "Be webub BAH!!!" she wailed. More giggles.
Horatio finally got his voice back. "Mariette? That natural pout of
your lips was never natural? You mean, all those kisses you gave me...they
weren't really that...you...I..." his voice faded again.
"Yes, sweet Horatio," said SSR. "Miss Frenchie here never learned
the right way to kiss so she tried to cheat. Now," she added, batting her
eyes, "if you would like me to show you..."
Our smiles immediately left.
"Don't you dare!" shouted PJ.
"Stay away from him," ordered Skihee. Again, we started to crowd around
the still-astonished Horatio...

Title: OK. . .time to finish off Mariette!
Author: DJ

We all took to screaming again, pressing in on poor Horatio who just
stood there in the middle, hands pressed tightly over his ears.
"WAIT A MINUTE! QUIET!!!", LynM shouted above the din, in that
commanding way she had. We somehow managed to quiet down. "Listen! Do you
hear that noise?", she queried. I cocked my head to listen. From directly
behind us we heard a very soft "ppppphhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhttttt" sound - very
much like someone blowing up a balloon. We all turned in Mariette's
direction and stared in amazement at the sight before us!
The swelling that had started in Mariette's lips had spread to her
entire head, which was now the size of a very large beachball. As we looked
on, it continued to grow. . .and grow. . .until finally she began to rise
slowly off the ground!
"HOLY HELIUM BALLOON!", I shouted joyously. "She's not swelling!
She's INFLATING!!!".
"THAR SHE BLOWS!", yelled Kelly.
"WHOOP-DEE-DOOOO!", screamed LynM.
"WAY TO GO, FROGGY!", cried NL.
Mariette was now at least 10 feet off the ground, bobbing in the
breeze. She flapped her arms, trying to bring herself back down, but she
just went higher!
SSR cupped her hands around her mouth and yelled upwards, "I SEE
LONDON, I SEE FRANCE! I SEE FRENCHIE'S UNDERPANTS!".
Horatio detached Caitren from his leg and pushed through to the front
of the crowd. He just stood there, staring up at Mariette in utter
disbelief.

Just then the wind picked up. . .


Title: "Mariette! Mariette!"
Author: NL

cried Horatio, his hands cupped to his mouth. "Whatever...?"
The mob of ladies started whooping and cheering. Horatio turned
towards us sharply. We immediately shut up and took on a grave demeanor. In
a grave silence, we watched as Balloon Mariette floated away and away until
she became a small brown dot in the sky.
It was completely quiet. Then Horatio muttered "I've never seen
anything like it..."
That one sentence set us off again. We started whooping and hollering
like there was no tomorrow. "Mariette is gone, Mariette is gone!" we sang.
From far far up we heard a faint POP! "There she blows!" yelled PJ
exultantly.
"That sure beats being blown up on a stupid old bridge!" I laughed.
"now she's in the zeeeelion pieces that she was supposed to be in the first
place." Suddenly I grew grave. "Now who here forgot to contribute her share
of powder to the explosives on the bridge?"
The ladies grew quiet and looked supsiciously at one another like a
"whodunnit."
"T'wasn't me," declared DJ. "I'm positive."
"Wasn't me either," I said. "I promise! I stayed with Archie that
whole time!"
We all began talking at once, completely forgetting Horatio, who
had now transfered his awestruck gaze from the sky to us. Suddenly we heard
an explosive manly voice.
"LADIES!!! YOU...YOU...were in charge of those explosives at the
bridge??? WHAT???"
"Oh great," whispered LynM to me. "Look what you've done..."

Title: Captain Pellew now stood before us, seething. . .
Author: DJ

He was still covered from head to toe with various dessert toppings, but
nevertheless, managed to look extremely intimidating as he stood there and
stared us all down. Horatio took his place beside him.
"MISS DJ!!" he bellowed. I came to attention. "Yes Sir!" "EXPLAIN
YOURSELF AT ONCE!!".
"Sir! I. . .um, I mean. . .we. . .um", stammered. He bent down and screamed
in my face, "OUT WITH IT, MISSY!".
Seeing that I had no choice but to tell the truth, I stood up straight
and cleared my throat. "Yes Sir! You see, most of us here had been involved
at one time or another with Mr. Hornblower before he left to serve on the
Indy. We managed to keep tabs on him and found out that he had become
involved with that awful Mariette when he was in France." I glanced over at
Horatio, who was now glaring at me.
"CONTINUE!!", the captain blared. "Sorry, Sir. Ummm. . .well you
see, we just couldn't put up with him sparking that Frenchie, so we stowed
away on a frigate that was heading for France. It was a difficult trek, Sir,
but we finally managed to get to Muzillac."
Captain Pellew was now pacing slowly back and forth, hands clasped
behind his back. "Unbelievable, just unbelievable!" he muttered under his
breath, shaking his head.
I went on. "We found out Horatio's men were going to blow up the
bridge, so we. . .ummmm." I fumbled.
"GO ON!"
"Well, we sort of. . .infiltrated the operation.", I blurted.
The captain stopped pacing and turned to face me. "And just how, did you
manage to do that, young lady?!", he questioned. "Weeellllll. . .you see. .
.we sort of. . .well. . .Oh, NL! You tell him, pleeeeeeeeese?!"

Title:My mouth dropped open...
Author: NL

"ME???" I gasped.
Pellew turned to me, every ounce of the intimidating captain. "WELL???
MISS??? WHAT HAVE YOU TO SAY???"
"We...well...I...we...Horatio...um..."
"What a stutturing wench you are to be sure! Well, come on!"
"We...um...sorta snuck in the Indy when she was heading to
Muzillac...and..."
"STOWAWAYS??? AND WHERE DID YOU HIDE???"
I cringed, cursing DJ for getting me in this predicament. "Um...well,
some of them...got places in the midshipmen's berth with...um...well, some
of the...well, you see...your...midshipmen." I could feel the eyes of all
the ladies boring into me. "And um... some of us hid with...well...sir,
the...chickens," I whispered.
I could see Pellew turning red underneath the apple pie on his face.
"And how did you infiltrate the mission?" he roared. He made a
emphasizing gesture with his hand and frosting flew everywhere. I ducked.
"We rode in the...dung cart sir. Mr. Kennedy and I...well, we...um...in
any case, he didn't mind sir."
"I'll deal with Kennedy later" he fumed. "Continue!"
"Then um...we offered to help with the explosives while others of us
dressed up as...um...froggies and took a trip to town..."
The captain had murder in his eyes, I was sure.
"My memory fails me sir!" I cried. "Miss DJ can tell you the rest!"

Title: "Thanks a lot!" I hissed. . .
Author: DJ

at NL as the Captain eyeballed me once again.
"Well, you see. . .", I started. My words were cut off by a shrill
woman's voice calling, "Well, if it isn't my dear Mr. H!". We all turned to
look. An elegant jet-black carriage pulled by two fine white horses had
pulled up behind us, and sticking her head out of the window was none other
than the Duchess!
Her coachman opened the carriage door. "And Captain Pellew as well, I
see!", she said as she carefully climbed down. Both Horatio and Captain
Pellew immediately rushed over to help her, tripping over each other as they
went.
NL and I breathed a sigh of relief. "Boy, we sure got out of that one!",
I said, elbowing NL. "Whew!" she breathed in reply, "But now we've got this
Duchess lady to deal with!".
Just as they reached the carriage, Pellew gave Horatio a mighty shove,
sending him sprawling in the dirt. The Captain straightened his uniform,
bowed elegantly and offered his hand to the Duchess. "It is a pleasure to
see you again, my lady", he purred. He turned sharply to Horatio. "ON YOUR
FEET, MAN!", he commanded. Horatio jumped up, brushing off the seat of his
pants.
"Oh, dear Edward. How lovely to see you!", the Duchess cooed as she
curtsied deeply, shamlessly showing the Captain her decollatage.
"Hrrmphh", Captain Pellew cleared his throat nervously.
She winked at him. "And Mr. H! You're looking very. . .shall we say,
tasty!" she finished, eyeing the frosting still clinging to his uniform.
Horatio came forward, blushing a deep red. "Why thank you, my lady", he said
nervously as she offered him her hand. "I'll take that, MR. HORNBLOWER!",
the Captain snapped as he pushed Horatio aside. Pellew took the Duchess'
hand in his and stared deeply into her eyes.
"HEY!! WHO THE HECK IS THIS CHIPPY??!!!", bellowed SSR who was shoving
her way through the crowd. "Care to explain, EDDIE??!!", she shouted as she
strode toward the Captain. . .

Title: Pellew turned,
Author: NL

saw SSR charging towards him covered with rasberry jelly, and gasped.
The Duchess smiled engagingly. "And who is this lovely girl, Edward?
Forming quite a following, are we?" She laughed and slapped him with the
fan.
"Oh, SSR! Whatever are you...what?" the captain was at a loss for once.
"And who is THIS???" demanded SSR. Miss F was pushing her way now too.
"EDWARD!!!"
Pellew was looking very perplexed now. Then he shook himself.
"I don't know these ladies, Your Grace. Now, if you will allow me, I'll
escort you to the cafe." He bowed gallantly. Horatio popped up in between
their arms.
"Oh your grace, do allow me. Begging your pardon sir."
Pellew shoved Horatio and sent him sprawling in the mud again. The
ladies gasped at the rough treatment. Pellew, arm and arm with the Duchess,
walked to the cafe staring at the sky while SSR and Miss F stared
open-mouthed. The Duchess grinned nervously and glanced at the apple pie
dripping off Pellew's arm onto her lovely skirt. The rest of us rushed to
Horatio and were picking him up and brushing him off.
"Thank you ladies, but I don't need help," he said, pushing us off. He
followed Pellew and the Duchess into the Cafe. SSR and Miss F made to follow
them. We ladies, curious to see what would happen next, prepared to follow,
when I turned around and saw...
"ARCHIE!!!" I ran over, pushed off Sue N, who was hanging on his arm,
and grabbed him. "Dearest Archie," I smiled. Surprised, he and Sue N.
stared at me open-mouthed as I rushed over, frosting dropping off my hair.
"you're still here? What happened?" he finally asked, looking at me and
the group of ladies with various assortments of desserts on them.
"Yes, dearest, whatever. I need your help! There's going to be a serious
confrontation. Pellew and Horatio are in the cafe and there's going to be a
real explosion because the Duchess is there and..."
"The Duchess!" Archie exclaimed. He dropped my arm and headed towards
the cafe. "Why didn't you say so earlier?"
Sue N. and I stared open-mouthed. Then I heard DJ giggling. I turned
around. "what's so funny?"
DJ straightened up. "Nothing." She turned around. "COMMON LADIES!!! WE
GOT SERIOUS COMPETITION THIS TIME!!! THIS WOMAN'S NOT GONNA BE AS EASY AS
MARIETTE! LET'S GET TO IT!!!" She headed off running towards the cafe where
Archie had just disappeared. The rest of us made to follow her...

Title: I reached the door of the cafe first. . .
Author: DJ

and stopped short to peek inside, hoping to assess the situation. Then,
CRASH!! - the entire group of ladies ran right into me and WHUMP!! - down
we went to the floor together in a big pile.
I struggled in vain at the bottom of the pile-up, my face mashed roughly
down against the plank floor. I could feel the ladies beginning to pick
themselves up off the pile, but there were just too many of them!
Too much pressure on my chest!!
I couldn't breathe!
My lungs burned for air!
I felt myself slipping away. . .slipping. . .and then there was. .
.blackness.
And then suddenly I could feel myself coming to. The ladies were gone
and I was now laying face up. . .and I could feel the softest, most sensuous
lips pressed against mine, breathing life into me. I reached out my hand to
touch my rescuer and felt luxurious, soft, wavy hair. I opened my eyes. . .
"Horatio", I moaned. . .for it was indeed my darling Horatio who was
bent over me, his lips to mine. It was he who had given me the breath of
life. (Yeah, yeah - I know, I know - nobody knew how to give mouth-to-mouth
back then - but, so what? This is MY story!).
"Yes, my dearest DJ", he whispered, his hand gently carressing my face.
"You gave me quite a scare, love", he said with a warm smile. He put his
lips to mine again. . .not to give me a breath. . .but to kiss me.
And such a warm, wonderful kiss. . .I ran my fingers through his
beautiful hair. I touched his handsome face. "Oh, Horatio, I love you", I
murmered between his kisses. "And I, you", he responded, kissing me more
deeply. . .
"HEY!!!! WAIT A MINUTE!!!!", someone screamed. Horatio gave a start and
pulled away from me. "Geeze! Just when it was getting good!", I complained,
rising up on my elbows.
The ladies were in a circle, surrounding us. Kelly stood there in front,
hands on her hips, legs apart, with an absolutely ferocious look on her
face. And for the first time that day, I noticed that she was wearing
Horatio's lovely straw hat. . .


Title: "Now how do you explain this..."
Author: NL

"HORATIO!!!" I screamed as I pushed through the crowd of ladies gawking
at DJ and Horatio on the floor. I shoved aside Kelly who was making
inarticulate "I...you...DJ...straw hat...Horatio..." sounds. Horatio
scrambled to his feet and stood facing the group of ladies. DJ remained on
the floor with a silly grin on. He stood there and suddenly...
He was kissing ME! As hard and as passionately as I ever saw him. My nose
was getting squashed, but I didn't care. Then just as suddenly, he took off
running, slid across some jelly on the floor and landed PLOP right in the
booth where Pellew, the Duchess, and now Archie were sitting.
"Yes, your grace, as I always say, those statuaries in Florence..." the
captain was rambling on, "are...oh dear, I'm sorry, did I drop that fruit
cake on you Mr. Kennedy? I'm terribly sorry, you had better go get cleaned
up. But, as I was saying to your grace..." When WHOOMP, Horatio made his
slide across and landed with a WHOOOSH right next to the Duchess.
"Good Heavens MAN!" exploded Pellew, "have you fellows no sense of
decency?"
"Sorry sir," said Horatio smoothly, "I was encountering a slight problem
there. Oh no! I'm terribly sorry Archie!" he cried as Archie was making his
way past him, "I seem to have spilled wine on you. Fortunately you were
already going to get cleaned up, right dear fellow?"
I ran up and took Archie's arm. "Let me help you, dearest," I cooed.
"Forget those other people sitting at the booth..."
"But...the duchess," he pleaded.
"Never mind her, come with me," and with a smile I led him away.
For those surprised at this course of action I took, the explanation was
really quite simple. I couldn't take (nor believe) this cavalier treatment
from Horatio anymore. And I wasn't in the mood for another food fight, which
seemed to be coming when I saw Kelly take aim at DJ with a strawberry pie.
However, it seemed it was my destiny. Archie and I had barely made it
halfway across the cafe when WHOOSH the pie flew from Kelly's hand and hit
DJ, and there, standing menacingly with a custard pie in hand, was Sue N in
front of me...

Title: "And just where do YOU think you're going. . .
Author: DJ

MISSY!!", Sue N. hissed at NL as she shifted the custard pie to her throwing
hand.
Just as she let the pie go, NL swiftly ducked behind Archie, who took
the pie squarely in the face.

"OH, ARCHIE!!", Sue N screamed. "I'M SO SORRY!!". She reached out and
began flicking custard and pie crust off Archie's uniform. "Tee Hee!", NL
giggled from behind him. Archie grabbed Sue N's wrist and held it tight.
"Just what is it with you ladies and desserts lately?!", he said through his
clenched teeth.
I shifted my gaze from Archie to Kelly who was now standing before me in
a fencing stance, brandishing a baguette. I cautiously reached behind me, my
hand groping for the bread basket. "EN GUARDE!!", I yelled, grabbing my own
baguette and waving it in Kelly's face. "I'm gonna knock that hat right off
your head, BUCKO!", I threatened. She backed up a step, holding the hat
tightly to her head.
Behind Kelly I saw that all of the other ladies had grabbed various
desserts off the cart and were once again aiming at each other. "Here we go
again!", Horatio said as he ducked under a table.
Just then Captain Pellew stood up. "ENOUGH!!!!", he bellowed. He threw
down his napkin, roughly pushed aside his chair and stalked over to the
middle of the room. "PUT THOSE DESSERTS DOWN, I SAY!", he commanded.
All of us complied, lowering our arms.
"GOOD!", he barked. "Now, ladies - and I use the term LOOSELY!", he said
as he began to pace back and forth, hands behind his back. "You will stop
this nonsense at once! Your behavior today has been absolutely
unforgivable!", he said.
"It would do all of you good to try to emulate a true lady!", he said as
he turned to the Duchess. "Take the Duchess, for example." He gestured
toward her. "Now, THAT is how a lady behaves!" The Duchess smiled sedutively
at Pellew and fluttered her fan.
"You "ladies" behave more like TROLLUPS!!", he sneered. "SHAMELESS
HUSSIES!!", he continued, banging his fist on the table. "MARIETTES!!!", he
banged his fist again.
Well, that last insult was to much to take. . .

Title: We all raised our arm again...
Author: NL

and Pellew received a dozen pies in the face from a dozen directions.
"MARIETTE!!! YOU DARE CALL US THAT!!! YOU'RE NO GENTLEMAN!!!" we
screamed as we continued to frantically throw anything we got our hands on.
"MMMPPHH MHOMP!!!" yelled Pellew as he tried to duck from the assault.
"I can't believe you called us THAT EDDIE!" screamed SSR, letting fly
her strawberry shortcake. By now, Horatio had crawled and hid himself
securely under the table. The Duchess smiled seductively again.
"Trying to find those dispatches eh, Mr. H?" she beguiled. "Well,
dearie, look farther up."
"YOU CALL THAT LADYLIKE BEHAVIOR!!!" screamed DJ, completely outraged.
"WELL, HUSSY, THIS'LL TEACH YOU TO TALK TO MY HORATIO THAT WAY!!!" The
Duchess opened her mouth...and received a mouthful of frosting from DJ's
direction.
"MY UNEEEFORM!!! MMPH MMUOPH!!!" yelled Pellew.
Horatio was under the table, still gloating over the onslaught going on
his captain.
Archie, who had been standing quietly on the side, glanced down at the
spilled wine and dripping custard on his white breeches. Then he grinned
slightly, grabbed a fruit tart off the table, walked unobtrusively over to
the table, reached under, and SQUASH, mushed it into Horatio's face.
Horatio stared, fruit dripping off his beautiful dark hair and eyes.
"Oh dear," smiled Archie enchantingly, "that does seem a bit messier
than wine, doesn't it?"
Horatio scrambled out, grabbed a bowl of gelatin, and tossed it at
Archie. At the last minute, he ducked and the gelatin went flying over his
head to hit me and DJ in the act of hauling a bowl of wine together at
Pellew. SMACK! and we were both covered from head to toe with green and red
blobs. Horatio covered his mouth.
"So...sorry ladies! I..."
We both turned. "HORATIO!!! YOU'LL PAY FOR THIS..."

Title: "YOU. . .YOU. . .YOU. . .
Author: DJ

you. . .gorgeous, handsome, sexy sailor!!", I cried as I dashed into his
arms. He pulled me close and we stood there, locked in our embrace. Nothing
else mattered in the world except Horatio . .Horatio. . .Horatio. . .
"HEY!!", NL shouted. She walked over and bopped me on the back of the
head with a hard roll. I barely noticed as I stood there so close to my
beloved, gazing into his soulful, brown eyes.
"HEY!!", she shouted once again, this time directly into my ear. I
jumped. "What do you want, NL? Can't you see I'm busy?", I snapped.
"What do you mean you're BUSY!!!", she screamed again. "Horatio just
dumped a whole bowl of lime jello on your head, and you DON'T CARE??".
"Nope", I answered smiling, as I stroked Horatio's gorgeous, wavy hair. NL
threw her hands up in disgust.
Just then, I noticed the sound of running footsteps coming from behind
me. I turned just in time to see Archie charging toward us full out, head
down. "OH NO!!", I screamed just as Archie rammed us.
"HORATIOOOOOOOO!!", I screamed as I was sent flying through the air.
Fortunately I landed right on top of Kelly who cushioned my fall quite
nicely. "Thanks, Kel", I said as I tried to get up. "Wuhhhh?" was all she
could say in reply, her eyes rolling back in her head.
I turned back in Horatio's direction, and what a sight I beheld! Horatio
and Archie, those two dear friends, were rolling about on the floor punching
the you-know-what out of each other! And there was NL. . .

Title: screaming and screaming
Author: NL

"STOP!!! HORATIO! ARCHIE! STOP IT NOW!!!"
I stood there helplessly, not knowing what to do. DJ was still sitting
on Kelly, laughing hysterically.
"OOMPH!" Kelly pushed her off. DJ tumbled onto a mass of jelly and
continued laughing. By this time, the duchess was giggling a little herself,
though she couldn't see very well with the frosting on her face. DJ rolled
next to her, surreptitiously tossed some more frosting into her face, and
laughed even harder. There were now 4 people staring murderously at DJ; me,
Kelly, the captain, and the duchess.
Fortunately though, we were distracted by Archie and Horatio knocking
over the remainder of the bowls of punches left on the table. CRASH! those
two were soon covered with the red liquid. Sue N ran over and screamed.
"ARCHIE!!! MY POOR ARCHIE!!! OH GET OFF HORNBLOWER!!!" She pushed
Horatio aside, ran to Archie's side, and started brushing him off.
I picked up my handy hard roll again. "Hey!" I yelled, this time bopping
her on the head a little harder than I had hit DJ. "HEY!!!"
At the same moment, DJ was rushing over to Horatio, also lying on the
ground, and covering him with kisses.
The captain tried to reach us too, but he couldn't see where he was
going since the other ladies were still pelting him. "MMPH! BAAPH!!!"
While I continued trying to push Sue N out of the way, I saw Kelly and
the Duchess both glance at DJ and Horatio on the floor, exchange a knowing
glance, and they both walked over to the wrecked dessert bar...

Title: "The turned their backs on DJ and Horatio. . .
Author:DJ

just for a moment. The Duchess smiled a nasty smile and grabbed a huge
bowl of rice pudding. Kelly winked at her
and picked up a lucsious-looking chocolate cake. "LET'S GET 'EM!", Kelly
cried as they turned around, poised for the attack.
"What the. . .?", the Duchess queried. "Huh?", Kelly grunted. Horatio
and DJ were gone! Vanished!
"NOOOOOOOOOO!!!", they cried in unison.
Everyone else in the room stopped what they were doing and looked at
them. "Where are Horatio and that @$%*! DJ", Kelly yelled, pulling at her
hair. The ladies threw down their desserts and sprang into action, dashing
about the room, searching everywhere for the couple. Under tables. . .behind
curtains. . .in the kitchen. . .nothing.
After a few minutes of this, they realized the couple was indeed nowhere
to be found. They all sat down to rest and collect their thoughts. . .all
but Sue N who was still looking frantically about the room. "OH NO!", she
cried.
"Archie is gone too. . .and so is NL!!!".
**********************
"Come on, love!", Horatio encouraged me as we sprinted hand in hand down
the dark alley outside the cafe.
"We've got to put some distance between us and those crazy women quickly
- before they realize we're gone!". We
reached the end of the alley and turned left. Night had fallen and the
streets were now as dark as pitch.
"But where are we going, Horatio?!", I asked breathlessly. "You'll see
in a minute!", he answered, pulling me even
faster. At the end of the street, we turned right. I now realized we had
reached the port.
We ran down the dock. . .headed toward the dark shape of a ship. As we
got closer, I could see it was a schooner.
We finally reached the ship, both of us quite out of breath. "I don't
believe they followed us.", Horatio panted as pulled me up the gang plank.
"Thank Goodness!", I answered happily.
We quickly clambered aboard the ship. I plopped down on the deck,
completely out of breath, while Horatio immediately set about to cast off.
Just then I heard the sound of running footsteps coming up the dock.
"Horatio!", I whispered, "Someone's comming!". Horatio ducked behind a stack
of ropes and motioned for me to be quiet. We didn't dare even breathe!
"Horatio, old man!", a man's voice called from below. "I say, any room
for two more?". "It's Archie!", cried
Horatio happily. He jumped up and lowered the gang plank again. In a
minute, Archie was over the side - followed by NL!

***********************
So sorry folks, it was my story and I got the guy! =) Forgive me for the
liberty of using your names; I apologize beforehand.

Have a Merry Christmas, and eat alot!

M'man NAtalie
Protector/Possessor...

"God bless us, every one!"