Printed from https://shop.writing.com/main/campfires/item_id/2303670-Alabama-Smith-Quest-for-Excalibur
Rated: 13+ · Campfire Creative · Fiction · Action/Adventure · #2303670
An anthro parody of Indiana Jones.
I'm a huge fan of the classic Indiana Jones films. So, what better way to express my enjoyment of the franchise than doing my own affectionate attempt at the pulp adventure genre? Who knows? I may just make this story into a series!

Set in 1942, in an alternative earth where humans and anthros exist, albeit with varying degrees of relative peace, we follow Charles "Alabama" Smith, a humanoid fox and globetrotting treasure hunter, as well as part time teacher. After his latest adventure, he receives word that Hitler and the Nazis are searching for the mythical sword of King Arthur, Excalibur. Whoever wields the mystcical blade can claim rule of all Britain. Not one to stand by and let such an artifact fall into the hands of evil, Professor Smith sets out on his most fantastic, as well as most perilous, journey yet! Pursued by the cunning and bloodthirsty Helga Von Braunsteil, She-Wolf of the SS, can he recover the sword before the Nazis? Or will it be delivered in Hitler's vile hands, and allow him to succeed in finally conquering all of Europe?
Egyptian Desert, 1942

The boiling sun burned in the sky, shining down upon the vast expanse of sand and canyons. At the entrance to the Valley of the Kings, three figures stood. Two of them, local jackals from Cairo, had agreed to accompany the third, a foreign fox into the valley after he'd offered them significant payment for their services: Ten gallons of water each. Out here, the liquid was more precious than gold, and they eagerly agreed to lead him to his destination, not really asking or even caring what he could want there.

Everyone knew that the treasures of the kings of Egypt's past had been plundered long ago, the last great tomb having been discovered just twenty years prior. If this stranger wanted to send himself on a pointless chase for riches that were no longer there, who were they to argue? Unbeknownst to them, the fox knew something they did not. There was indeed one great treasure left in the valley, one that had laid undiscovered for multiple millennia.

Thanking his guides for their assistance, the fox told them to wait right there as he stepped into Valley proper, the two of them making a small camp as they watched him venture into the canyon. One asked in their native language "Do you think he's onto something?" The other scoffed "Of course not! There's nothing left here but empty tombs. I give him an hour before he comes back empty handed."

The fox wandered deep into the valley, pulling out a map from his pocket that indicated he was at the exact entrance of the tomb he sought. Looking up from the map, he saw only a plain wall of rock. If this was the entrance, there had to be some way to open it.
He checked his water, to see if that might do the job.
Uncorking his canteen, he splashed some water onto the rockface. For a moment, it looked as if nothing happened. Then suddenly, the wall of rock began to shift and split, until a doorway was exposed. Grabbing a torch from a nearby bracket, he lit it with a match from his pocket, and made his way into the long lost tomb.

He knew he had to be extremely careful. Every step he took might trigger an ancient trap meant for graverobbers, which he technically was. The narrow hall seemed to go on for miles, until he finally came to a huge chamber lined with all sorts of riches, possessions of whoever it was that had been buried here.

But he wasn't interested in these. He was after a greater prize. Something that was supposedly with the pharaoh himself. Traveling deeper into the tomb, he searched for the main burial chamber. When suddenly...
A portal opened up, and a female stripped skunk landed in front of him.

"Okay, when and where in the space-time continuum am I?" she asked, standing up, as she pulled out some sort of device. An image appeared. "Seriously? There, and then? Then, that must mean..." She turned, and found herself looking at the fox. "Ah, Dr. Charles Smith, best known as Alabama Smith. Nice to meet you."

"Who are you?" the fox asked.

"Doctor Sally Jones," the skunk said. "Time traveler, dimensional traveler, historian, anthropologist, and a bunch of other things."

"So, you're from the future?" Alabama asked.

"I'm from A future," said Sally.

"What does that mean?" Alabama asked.

"Think of time as a tree, with a lot of branches, and the same is true with dimensions," said Sally. "Imagine coming to an intersection - left, straight, and right. Go left, you find a trap, and die. Go right, you get out fine, but the whole place collapses behind you. Go straight, you find what you're looking for. Now, you're still alive in two of those options, and those can create more branches themselves, with you in them."

"You forgot standing put and turning around, going back the way I came," said Alabama.

"Possible options, which could lead to either life or death," said Sally.

"So, is the left path at the intersection booby trapped?" Alabama asked.

Sally checked her device, and looked down the path. A map appeared. "Yes, but someone else already found out the hard way."

"So, what are you doing here?" Alabama asked.

"Item recovery mission," said Sally. "I have to find an item, and retrieve it, before it falls into the wrong hands."

"What's this object?" Alabama asked.

"You might know it as Excalibur," said Sally. "In the hands of a Good Soul, it can lead to Peace and Prosperity. In the hands of an Evil Soul...... the devastation is worse than anything that's coming up in the next hundred years. Even the city destroying bombs that will soon be invented will be mere grenades by comparison."

"Wait, bombs that destroy cities are coming?" Alabama asked.

"Being worked on as we speak," said Sally. "Good news is, only two will ever be used during war, against other living targets, with even the worst enemies agreeing to not use them upon each other, more or less, afterwards."

"So, Excalibur - you're trying to find it to take it to the future?" Alabama asked.

"Failing that, I must destroy it," said Sally. "It's too dangerous to leave in this time period."
"Well, you won't find it here." Alabama said "If Excalibur exists, it wouldn't be in an Egyptian tomb."

"I assure you, it exists." Sally said "I know because the future I come from is one where Hitler gets his hands on it, and it allows him to succeed in conquering Europe, with the rest of the world following soon after."

At this, Alabama knew right then and there that he had to help this time travelling skunk in her mission. Even if her future and his weren't the same, he couldn't stand the thought of any timeline where the Nazis rule the world. "In that case, maybe I can help." He said "I have quite a bit of experience in finding lost artifacts."

Sally smiled "I'd greatly appreciate that, Mr. Smith." She looked at her strange device again. "Damn." She cursed "This thing must have malfunctioned mid-warp, which is why it brought me here. But at least the time period is right. Until we find the sword, it's probably best we travel the old fashioned way."

"So, any ideas where to begin our search?"

"First thing's first, we need to get to England."
"Well, first off, we need to get out of here, alive," said Alabama.

"So, what are you here for, exactly?" Sally asked. She checked her device. "Hmm, a scepter that summons fresh water - the Divining Rod. I can see how that would be useful in this area. Best be careful with it."

"Is that another item you're after?" Alabama asked.

"Not exactly, but I'd stick that thing into an abandoned sandstone quarry pit, and let it turn into a lake for the locals to use," said Sally. "Freshwater fish will also, somehow, show up."
"Truth be told, I was going to sell it to a museum. But your idea does sound more practical."

"That's right, I forgot you were a treasure hunter. Finding and selling that sort of stuff is how you make your living."

"I also teach history at my hometown university from time to time. Though to be honest, this job pays much better than that. Now, you wouldn't mind if I retrieve the rod before I help you on your mission, would you? I should be getting pretty close."

Sally nodded. "Of course. Just be careful, like I said, the left passageway is trapped, and who knows what else is waiting for any would-be plunderers."

Heeding her advice, Mr. Smith avoided the left passageway and journeyed deeper into the crypt. Until he came to a large chamber where the floor seemed to be constantly shifting. Leaning down with his torch, Alabama suddenly froze in fear, as he saw the entire floor of the room was covered with huge, black, and hairy tarantulas.

"Well?" Said Sally. "We're nearly to the burial chamber. The rod should be in the Pharaoh's sarcophagus, just past this room."

Mr. Smith was practically quivering with fright, unable to take another step. It was then Sally noticed the spiders. "Oh please, Mr. Smith. They're not even venomous!" "This is so embarrassing." Alabama managed to say "But I have a terrible fear of spiders. I always have, since I was five." Sighing in frustration, Sally stepped directly into the sea of spiders, with a sickening crunch after crunch as she traversed the room.
"See?" She reached to pull a lever to open a door at the end of the chamber. "Wait!" Alabama called out "Don't pull-" But it was too late.

The instant the lever came down, the entire tomb began to shake violently. "Earthquake?" Sally said questioningly "No! Booby trap!" Alabama said, just before sand began to gush into the tomb from every wall, pouring in like miniature waterfalls. If the two of them didn't think of something quickly, they would both be buried alive!
Good news was, the sand stopped pouring in. Bad news was, the floor was covered in a foot of loose sand.

Worse than that, the spiders had climbed up on any object higher than the floor, to escape the initial flooding.

Sally was annoyed about being covered in them. From ears to striped tail, they were all over the skunk.

Alabama though - he was petrified, like a statue. The fox was too scared to move.

Sally rolled her eyes as she looked at him. Some hero, she thought.
         "Need a bit of help Sally?!"

         Looking up, Sally became even more annoyed. Not because of the spiders, but from who she was looking at.

         "You've got to be kidding me..."

         Looking down at them from the roof of the room was a chamelion man known as George Slater. Internationally wanted for raiding tombs, and selling what he finds to the highest bidder..
Using his long, sticky tongue, George snatched up each spider one by one before devouring them, which of course, made Dr. Smith feel extremely nauseous, forcing him to look away. George dropped down from the ceiling after eating the final spider. "Thanks." Sally said begrudgingly. "But what are you doing here?" George grinned "The same thing as Dr. Arachnophobe over there, looking for the divining rod. Seeing I just saved you two, I'd say you owe it to me to just take it and be on my way."

"I'm afraid I can't allow that." Dr. Smith said, trying not to fall face first into the sand and he stepped forward. George laughed. "Oh, come on! If it wasn't for me, you would probably have been stuck frozen in fear until you eventually died of dehydration! Besides, you were going to sell it, just like me, so what's the difference?"

"The difference is I would sell it to a museum, where at least it could be studied and people could learn from it. Whereas you would sell it to some private collector who would just hoard it for themselves!"

"Regardless, my point still stands, Dr. Smith. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have some business to attend to. Thanks for the meal, by the way."

As he turned to face the door to the burial chamber, Dr. Smith shouted "Look out, behind you!" George just scoffed without turning around. "If you think I'm going to fall for that old trick.."

"No, really!" Sally said "Behind you!"

At this, George turned, only to be greeted by Sally's incoming fist, knocking him out cold. "Always wanted to do that to him." She said with a smile. "Now then, lets get this rod and get out of here."
"I take it that you know him," said Alabama.

"We've crossed paths across the dimensions and timelines," said Sally. "Best bring him along though. Can't just leave him here."
Lifting the knocked out chameleon onto his shoulder, Alabama and Sally entered the burial chamber. In the center of the room stood a stone sarcophagus, lavishly decorated in hieroglyphics. Setting George down a moment, they both slid the lid off the coffin. There lay the mummy of some long forgotten king. He may have once been an important figure to his kingdom, but now his name had been lost to time. Resting on the mummy's chest was the scepter, a short golden staff with a large sapphire at its top.

Alabama retrieved the rod, taking a moment to marvel at it before handing it to Sally. "Hold that for me. It's a long ride back to Cairo." Picking George up once again, they made their way out of the tomb back the way Dr. Smith had come, only to receive a most unwelcome surprise when they reached the entrance. Standing there with their weapons pointed directly at Smith and his companions, was a dozen german soldiers, headed by the most infamous officer under Hitler's command: Helga Von Braunsteil, She-Wolf of the SS.

She didn't get that nickname just from her reputation of ruthlessness and cunning, either. She really was a wolf in an SS officer uniform. "Guten tag, Herr Smith." She said with an evil grin. Alabama cursed under his breath, seeing he was outgunned and outnumbered. Helga stepped forward, her smile turning into a sneer. "Don't think I've forgotten our last encounter, when you gave me your little parting gift." She growled, pointing to the eyepatch covering her left eye.

"I suppose you'll just order your thugs to kill us and take the scepter now, Fraulein Braunsteil?" Alabama said with an heir of sarcasm. Helga grinned again, one that if not for her wolfish appearance, one might have mistaken her for the Cheshire Cat. "Oh no, you're only half right, doctor. Whatever trinket you've recovered is of no interest to me. However, I intend to make you suffer a most agonizing demise for all the times you've humiliated and thwarted me. As for your companions, I don't know who they are, but I'll have to eliminate them as well. Loose ends, and all that."

The next thing Smith knew, the three of them were being forced to march at gunpoint far out into the desert, before they were suddenly told to stop. Then they were restrained on their knees with their hands behind their back as Helga's men began to dig three holes. Afterwards, all three of them were placed in said holes and buried up to their necks, leaving their heads exposed to the scorching desert sun.

"You two!" Helga ordered two of the soldiers "Stay here and don't leave until they are dead. Whether they die of thirst or the desert beasts get them first, I don't care. Just return to base when the deed is finished." She looked at the rod she had taken from Sally, then tossed it aside, purely to spite Alabama.

"Auf Wiedershein, Herr Smith." She said as she boarded the convoy away from the scene, mockingly blowing him a kiss. "May the devil show you more mercy than the desert will." The two guards set up a small camp and waited, playing cards as Alabama tried to think of a way out of this one. George, who was still knocked out all this time, was just now coming to."What the?! How did we get here!?"

"Who was that woman?" Sally finally asked "Let's just say she's someone I've crossed paths with on multiple occasions, and an extreme sore loser." Alabama said. One of the soldiers guarding them ordered them to shut up in German. "I don't suppose you have any clue how we can get out of this, do you?" Sally whispered.
"At the moment, not really," said Alabama.

"Well, luckily, this isn't my first time in this sort of position," said Sally.

George grinned, clearly remember something. "Takashi still hasn't forgotten that escape."

"He should of known better than to try to kill me," said Sally. She then disappeared from sight.

Alabama blinked. "Sally? Where did you go?"

At this, the German soldiers looked up, and came over.

"Where is she?" the one asked.

"I don't know," said Alabama.

"Guess you idiots don't know that skunks can dig with their feet," said George. "Maybe if you start digging, you'll be able to locate her."

Alabama shot the lizard a look. "Why would you betray her?"

"She stolen plenty of things from me!" George exclaimed. "Shields, weapons, armor, gold, jewels, and a whole lot more!"

The two soldiers began digging around where Sally had been. Soon, a pit was dug back out.

"Nichts! (Nothing!)" the one exclaimed.

"Sie muss hier irgendwo sein (She has to be around here, somewhere)," the other said, setting his shovel down.

That was when Alabama watched as the shovel was lifted, and swung into the one soldier's skull. The other soldier looked towards the source of the attack, only to be met by a blow himself.

Sally flickered into view. "I almost feel sorry for them," she said. "Almost."

"So, what was that?" Alabama asked.

"Holographic projector," said George. "Allows one to blend in with the surroundings. In this case, sand."

"The annoying part was when they put some of it on me," said Sally. "It doesn't muffle sound."
         After picking the staff up, stripping and burying the two soldiers to there necks, the three took the jeep and headed the opposite direction of Nazi-amy.
"So, you got what you were after. Will you help me now?" Sally asked as they drove through the sands. "Of course. I promised I would, didn't I? But first, I just need to make one quick detour." Alabama said. Driving to an abandoned quarry not too far away, Alabama took the rod and placed it at the center of the pit. Fresh, clear water began to gush from the rod itself, soon turning the quarry into a lake. It wasn't long before locals noticed, and brought clay jugs to fill from the spring, as well as diving in to get some relief from the heat.

Sally smiled, patting Alabama on the back. "You did the right thing, Mr. Smith. I'm sure the folks around here will be eternally grateful for what you just did." George on the other hand, was dumbfounded. "Do you have any idea how much that thing is worth, especially around here? It's priceless! You're just going to basically give it away?"

"Just because I'm a treasure hunter doesn't mean I'm greedy." Alabama retorted "Besides, maybe one day I'll be back here in need of help. In which case, the locals will be more obliged to aid me. In this line of work, you never know." With that said, they began the drive back to Cairo. "So, Excalibur should be somewhere in Britain, if the legends are to be believed." Sally said. "Which means that's where we're headed."

"You're looking for the sword of King Arthur?" George asked incredulously "I've seen some crazy things on the job, but never anything to suggest some fairytale like that is true." Ignoring him, Sally continued "Arthurian legend says that when King Arthur died, Excalibur was returned to whence it came, to The Lady of the Lake. But I have reason to suspect it was buried with Arthur himself."

"So, what you're saying is, in order to find Excalibur and save the world and the future, we first need to find the tomb of a mythical king that nobody even knows where it is?" Alabama asked.

"Exactly, yes."

"Well, I've had tougher jobs. Where do you propose we begin?"

"First we get to England. Then, to Stonehenge."

"Stonehenge? Why there?"

"You'll see."
Soon enough, the trio were at Stonehenge. It hadn't been easy, avoiding one navy ship, or another, and then stepping foot on English soil. Then there was getting a vehicle for traveling.

Sally looked at the monument. She then looked at her device. "Best be careful. Shouldn't be any temporal or dimensional issues, but we'd best be on our guard."

"What issues could there be?" Alabama asked.

"Spidarians," said George. "Nice folk, but they make everything all sticky with their webbing."

"What are you talking about?" Alabama asked.

"The name is a clue," said Sally. "Sapient spider creatures the size of a human. Entirely friendly, so long as you don't mess with their egg sacks. Their beds are very comfortable though."
         At the mention of spiders, Alabama instantly froze up. Small ones freak him out, human sized made him pale as a ghost.
         Noticing this, Sally sighed in annoyance.
         "Of course..."
"They're not around here, are they?" Alabama said worriedly.

"Possibly." Sally said "This site is known to be sacred to them. Haven't actually seen them in quite a while myself."

"You know them? George asked.

"Had to make an impromptu visit to them in multiple time periods. Very knowledgeable folk, they might even be able to point us in the right direction if we run into one."

He wouldn't say it out loud, but Alabama sincerely hoped that didn't happen.
Sally chuckled as she looked at him. "Don't worry too much," she said. "Some actually saved my life."

"Um, how?" Alabama asked.

"I got on the wrong end of a guy with a sword, and because I refused to sleep with him, he slit me open," said Sally. "Should of died then and there, but I heard what he was planning to do with my corpse." The skunk shuddered.

"Wait, are we talking about Espalda?" George asked.

Sally nodded.

"Okay, heard about that fella," said the lizard. "He likes swords, and uses them to kill his victims. Then, he defiles the corpse."

"So, what happened?" Alabama asked.

"I managed to use my teleporter to get away from him, and ended up in a Spidarian's web, and passed out," said Sally. "Should of still died, but the web was being checked at the time by this couple. When I awoke, I'd been wrapped up, so that I could remain still, while my wounds healed up. They are very skilled with medicines, among other things. I was able to heal, got to know them, and I was able to leave after a month, with a clean bill of health."
Sally's reassurance did little to assuage Dr. Smith's fears. Desperate to change the subject, he said "You still haven't said how Stonehenge is supposed to lead us to Excalibur. " Still looking at her device, Sally replied "Basically, it's like a giant compass. It should point us in the general direction of King Arthur's tomb, Avalon. Problem is, I'm not really sure how to get it to work."

Before Alabama could respond, the sound of sirens echoed through the air from nearby London. "Well that's not good." George said "Those sirens can only mean one thing. "

"Air raid!" Alabama exclaimed "And we're out in the open!"
It didn't take long for german bombers to appear in the sky, dropping their loads onto London and the surrounding areas.

Explosion after explosion shook the ground. "They're getting closer!" George said worriedly. Sally rapidly pressed some buttons on her device, but it didn't seem to do anything. "Work, damn you, work!" She muttered. "Forget it!" Said Smith "We need to run, now!"
"Those sirens must be pretty good to be heard out here, and those guys must be a little lost," said Sally. "It's ninety miles between here and London, and I doubt Salisbury is of interest to the German military, normally."

"Maybe these ones have our names on them, somehow," said George.

"Wouldn't surprise me," said Alabama. "That wolfess might have figured out that we're still alive, and found out a few things themselves."
(Whoops. My bad. But, in my defense, I've never been to England, and was always led to believe that Stonehenge was much closer to London. But, as they say, don't believe everything you see on TV.)

What Alabama said seemed to be the case, as some of the fighter planes escorting the bombers began to swoop towards them, opening fire down on the trio. As they ran, Alabama yelled out "Run in a zigzag pattern! Try to throw off their aim!" Heeding his advice, Sally and George did so, making sharp turns whenever they could as they headed for the only available cover nearby, an old stone bridge spanning a short gap.

As they ran, a bullet struck Sally's warp device from her hand, knocking into a mud puddle. "Damn it!" She cursed as they all ducked beneath the bridge and the diving plane flew past, preparing to make another run. "I need to get that device back!" She said "It's my only way home! Not to mention, the consequences of leaving future technology in the past!"

Alabama knew she was right. But the plane was headed towards them again, rapidly spraying bullets all around. He desperately tried to think of a solution to their situation, when...
(Piece of advice - using Google helps.)

A large flying reptile appeared from nowhere, and started chasing the fighter planes, breathing fire. The fighters were forced to divert their course.

"Is that what I think it is?" Alabama asked.

Sally grinned. "You're on the right wavelength," the skunk said, as she walked over, and picked up her device.

The fighters finally fled.

The large reptile landed by the skunk. "Sally."

"Rodger," said Sally. "What brings you here?"

"What sort of husband would I be if I didn't keep an eye on my wife?" the creature asked. "I hope that you have some time available."

Alabama carefully came over. "What does he mean by that?"

"We're husband and wife," said Sally.

"How does that happen?" Alabama asked.

"It involved a priest," said Rodger.

"I have a lot of questions," said Alabama. "I mean, how does physical intimacy work?"

Rodger grinned, and in a flash, made himself look like, and be the size of, a lizardman, with fine clothes. "Dragon magic."
         Blinking a bit, Alabama decided to just drop it, and just try to keep his mind off what just happened.
"So, you were saying Stonehenge will tell us where to go?" Alabama asked as they made their way back to the ruins. "Yes. But as I said, I'm really not sure how." Sally replied. Then, as they came to the top of a hill overlooking Stonehenge, they saw two Spidarians approaching, a male and a female, the female carrying a large eggsack across her back.

Alabama, of course, once again froze in fear. Even at this distance, the sight of human sized spider creatures terrified him to the core. Sally and her husband approached the couple. "Hello." Sally greeted them "Can you help us? We're kind of lost." The male spoke "We might be able to help, but it will have to wait a while first. This is the ancestral birthing grounds for our clan. We must deliver the eggs to the circle by sundown."

The two of them proceeded to the ruins, placing the sack in the center surrounded by the monoliths. "Now we wait. So, what is it you need?" The female asked "It's kind of complicated, but you see, we're looking for a specific location, and these ruins are supposed to point the way to it. The problem is, we don 't know how."
"So, what are you looking for?" the male asked.

"King Author's grave, or his sword," said Sally.

"Interesting," the male said. He looked at Alabama. "What's with your friend? Looks like he's scared of something."

"He does that when he sees something spider-like, if you get my understanding," said Sally.

"Ah, arachnophobia," the male said. "Understood. In any case -"

"Zergert - they're hatching," the female said.
The eggsack began to wiggle and pulsate, until finally, hundreds of tiny baby Spidarians emerged. They immediately swarmed towards their parents, with a few dozen or so climbing curiously up the legs of the four strangers. "Hello, little ones." Sally cooed, gently holding one of them in her hand. Rodger chuckled, his wife always was good with kids. George had to resist the urge to devour the spiderlings, lest he risk pissing off their parents.

Alabama, on the other hand, had never been more terrified in his life. At least twenty baby Spidarians were crawling all over him. He could feel their tiny legs as they skittered across his body. "Don't worry." Said the female "They won't bite you."

This did little to calm him, as even just the sight of them was enough to paralyze him with dread. "Now then, you wish to know how to use this place to show you where to go?" Zergert, the male said. "Yes. If you would show us how, we would be very grateful." Sally replied.
"Let's see, King Author's grave, or sword," said Zergert. He held up a finger, and lightning shot off of it, through some of the supports. "Ah, you want the Cerne Abbas Giant."

Sally grinned at this. "Interesting hiding place for a king."

Alabama looked towards Sally. "Wait, isn't that the outline of a man with a large club and a huge-"

"He's called the Rude Giant for a reason," said Sally.
Bidding the Spidarians farewell, and congratulating them on becoming parents, the group began the trek to the outline of the giant. Once they were out of earshot, Alabama said "I just pray I never run into a situation like that again." Sally sighed in frustration. "Seriously? You're that afraid of spiders? Even harmless ones?" "You would be too if you had the same experience as a child that I did."

"And what was that?"

"I don't like to talk about it."

Sally decided not to press him further. After a while, George spoke up. "Couldn't your husband just change into his winged form and fly us there?" Rodger answered " Sally has a terrible fear of heights, I'm afraid. Besides, if anyone were to see us, I don't think the people of this time are accustomed to seeing huge dragons in the sky."

"That didn't stop you from chasing off those fighter planes earlier!"

"You were in danger, and no one else was around. I had to do something."
"Besides, stealth is necessary for this to work, " said Sally. "Hopefully those pilots will be accused of drinking schnapps or something."

"I like the peach flavored kind myself," said Rodger.
Meanwhile, Helga was busy cursing out her men for their apparent incompetence. "What kind of fool do you take me for?! First they escape the desert, and now you tell me you nearly had them, but were stopped by a dragon?! How stupid do you think I am?!"

"But mein fraulein, we are telling the truth! There really was a fire breathing dragon! It chased away our planes before we could finish them!"

"Enough! I don't want anymore of these ridiculous excuses! The next one to come to me with such an idiotic story, I will personally execute on the spot! Is that clear?"

The soldiers nodded with nervous expressions on their faces. "Now, you said they were in England. Any clue why?" Her underlings hesitated to reply "We think they may be looking for something. Knowing Dr. Smith, it must be some important artifact."
The group traveled to the giant outline.

George looked at it. "He must of been a big hit with the ladies, to willingly show off how big he is down there."

"It isn't the size that counts - trust me on that one," said Rodger. "I got to shrink down before Sally and I can get intimate."

"Bigger isn't better," said Sally.

"Why couldn't they have made him with clothes?" Alabama asked.
"Anyway, how will this lead us to the tomb?" Asked George. Sally pulled out her device again and did some calculations. "Just what is that thing, anyway?" Alabama asked "All kinds of things, really." Sally replied as continued typing "Time warp device, teleporter, camo, calculator and a whole bunch of other stuff."

"Seems like a pretty convenient thing to have." Commented Alabama "Where did you get it?"

"Built it myself. Although, it does have a few drawbacks. "

"Like what?"

"For one, the teleporter function only works for places I've already been to. Then there's the power source, anti-matter. If the device is extensively damaged, it could...well..."

"It could what?"

"It could create an explosion that would make those city destroying bombs I told you about seem like firecrackers by comparison. "

"Whoa, whoa, whoa! I'd say that's a pretty big design flaw!"

"Well, it was the only thing available to power the device's functions sufficiently! Don't worry, I am always very careful with it."
"I hope that there's a failsafe," said Alabama.

"It only works if someone related to me by blood is using it," said Sally. "Otherwise, it's a paperweight."
         Looking around, Alabama noticed something on the ground. It looked like a rune engraved into a stone with a handle and chain made of material he never seen before.
         "Hey guys! Come over here, I think I found something. Might be a clue..."
They tried pulling the chain, but the stone attached to it was too heavy, even when they all tried together. "Any other ideas?" Alabama asked between panting breaths.
"Might want someone bigger," Sally said, as she looked at Rodger.
         Catching her hint, Rodger had them spread out, to make sure that no surprises arise.
         Getting the all clear, with a great roar, he soon took his full grown dragon form. Taking the chain into his mouth, he began to pull.
But to his surprise, even his full strength was not enough to budge the stone. "I don't get it." Sally said "How could this one stone be so heavy?"

"Perhaps because it is enchanted." Said an unfamiliar voice.

Everybody looked around but there was nobody else in sight. "Who said that?" Alabama asked. "I did." Came the voice again. "Who's there?"

There was a bright flash, and there stood an old man dressed in blue robes, with a ridiculously long beard. "It can't be!" Sally gasped "Are you...?

"Merlin? Indeed, I am. Judging by your attempts to move this stone, I take it you are seeking the tomb of my old friend, Arthur?"

"Yes, we are." Sally explained "We need to retrieve his sword, Excalibur, in order to prevent it from falling into evil hands."

"I assure you, the sword is quite safe where it is."

"Not safe enough, apparently. I'm from a future timeline where it is found and used to conquer the globe."

"Madame, I am myself a time traveler, and I have not seen any future where Excalibur is found, I promise you that. Which is why I can't allow you lot to disturb my friend." Merlin pulled a wand from within his sleeve "Now, I don't wish to fight you, but I will defend the King's tomb by any means that I must."
"Hmm, if you say so," said Sally. "Come, Rodger. I know when to fold 'em."

"Fold what?" Alabama asked, as he watched the skunk and dragon begin to walk away. "Wait, you're just leaving?"

"Looks like it," said George. "Still, I think she knows something we don't know, something that this fella might not know."

Merlin teleported in front of Sally. "What wouldn't one such as myself know?"

"You are an Englishman, are you not?" Sally asked.

"I helped to found the Kingdom of England, I'll have you know," said Merlin.

"And yet, even if only if done from behind the scenes, where you let others get the credit, even for top secret projects, there's no evidence that exists that shows that you fought to protect England in her time of need, at least in my timeline," said Sally. "And, I think I know why - you were too busy protecting one specific spot, you forgot to protect yourself. A sniper from a fair distance away - Boom! Your head explodes, and then Helga Von Braunsteil digs up the sword, destroying the grave at the same time. Maybe if you had aided England as a whole, the world would not of been taken over. But, I guess you're too much of a coward to do that."

A flash of anger came to Merlin's face. "You like to anger those more powerful than yourself," said the old man.

Sally grinned. "Runs in the family."
         Alabama and George decided stand by her and her husband.
         But as they , Alabama saw what looked like a glint from a far off hill.
         "Take cover! Sniper!"
         Thinking quick, everyone took cover as Alabama jumped and pushed Merlin behind a large stone, taking the shot himself in the arm that was ment for the old man.
"You're injured!" Merlin said as Alabama took cover next to him behind the boulder. "I've had worse, believe me." Alabama replied, gritting his teeth. Even if he'd lived through more grievous wounds, it still hurt like hell. "Now what do we do?" George asked from a good distance away, behind another rock. The sniper had them pinned with no other cover in all directions. If any of them tried to run, they'd be easy picking.

"I'll handle this." Merlin said, vanishing into thin air. Invisible to the naked eye, he made his way to the sniper's perch. A few moments later, he called "You can come out now!" They made their way over to find the german sniper on his knees with his arms magically bound to his sides. "What should we do with him?" Rodger asked.

"We can't just let him go." Sally replied "He'll probably report back to his commander, who could be Helga for all we know, and tell them where we are." "It doesn't seem right to just kill him either." Alabama said "He's unarmed and poses no threat."

"If I may?" Merlin said "I think I have a solution." He reached into his robes and pulled out two vials, one red and one blue. "This right here is a truth serum." He indicated the red potion "Make him drink it, and he'll tell us anything we want to know. The other one is a special brew of my own making. It will put him to sleep and erase his memory of the past few hours. He won't even remember he ran into us."
"If nothing else, hopefully you'll be more willing to listen to what I've told you," said Sally.
         Handing the red vial to Sally, Alabama worked the soldiers mouth open before forcing him to drink it all down.
         "Ugh! That tatsed like molded sourcroute wrapped in garbage!"
         Releasing him, a strange aura surrounded him as his mind began to feel strange.
         Kneeling down, Alabama began the questioning.
         "Alright soldier, tell us your comanding officers name, your mission, and everything else you know."
"My C.O. is Helga Von Braunsteil." The sniper said in a strange, monotone voice. "My mission was to eliminate Dr. Smith and his companions. I've already radioed H.Q. and told them your location. They are on their way here as I speak." "That's all we needed to know." Alabama said before forcing the blue vial down the sniper's throat, putting him to sleep in an instant.

"We'll let his superiors deal with him." Sally said "Now will you open the tomb for us?"

Merlin sighed "I suppose I have no choice now. But first, let me see your arm." With a wave of his wand, he extracted the bullet from Alabama's arm and closed the wound. "Thanks."

"It's the least I can do. You saved my life, after all. Now then..."

Stepping up to the stone, he waved his wand again, and the ground split in two, parting to reveal a stone staircase leading into the earth. Descending the stairs, they entered the tomb to find not the skeletal remains of King Arthur, but Arthur himself laid out on a slab as though he were merely sleeping!

"How is he not bones by now?" George asked "Because he's not really dead." Merlin answered "I placed him in an enchanted slumber centuries ago, to awaken when England needs him the most." "Well, I think it's safe to say that time is now." Said Sally." How do we wake him?"

"Very simple."

Merlin stood over Arthur and muttered an incantation. Arthur opened his eyes and sat up. "Merlin? How long was I asleep?"

"Quite a long time, your majesty. It is now the year 1942, and your country, neigh, the whole world is under threat."

Sally stepped forward. "Forgive me for being so forward, your highness, but we must stop your sword Excalibur from falling into the wrong hands. If you'll just hand it over to us, we can prevent a most horrible future from ever coming to pass."

"Excalibur? But I haven't got it with me. It's in a hidden vault beneath my court at Camelot."
"Okay, forgive me, but 1, we need to get out of here, and 2, we need to figure out where that place is," said Sally. "The place isn't on a map these days, unless, like many places, it has suffered a name change, and doesn't look like the birthplace of chivalry. Also, 3, we need to get both of you a change of clothes. Robes and the armor you got on are way out of place these days."
         It was then that multiple explosions rocked the tomb, forcing all withing to fall.
         Running to the entrance, Geaorge changed his color to match the tomb as he peeked out of the tomb, to spot a army of Nazi's just entering the field.
         Seeing this, he ran back while returning to his normal color.
         Quick! Close the tomb! Unless you want the Nazi's to get the info to Excalibur first! Close it!!"
         Hearing the threat, Merlin raisef his hands once more and closed the opening, once more sealing the tomb, and all who was inside.
Outside, they could hear the sound of dozens of boots and the treads of tanks as the Nazis made their way over the tomb entrance. "Now what do we do?" Asked Alabama "Everyone hold hands." Said Sally "I'm going to teleport us out of here."

Doing as she said, Sally activated her device, and with a flash, they were back at Stonehenge. Alabama gave a quick look around to see if the Spidarians were gone. He breathed a sigh of relief when he saw they were.

"What sort of magic is that?" Arthur asked, looking at Sally's device "It's not magic, it's science." Sally replied "Something far beyond your time. Now, Merlin, can you alter yours and Arthur's apparel? In case anyone sees us, it would be hard to explain why you're dressed in robes and armor."

"Of course." With a wave of his wand, Merlin changed their clothes into something more modern. "Now then, Arthur, look around. Does anything look familiar that might jog your memory where Camelot used to be?" Sally said.
"Name some of the towns and villages that were close to it, say within a day's ride of it," said Rodger.

"A good reference of measurement," said Sally. "A day's travel on horseback is like 30 or so miles to us these days."
"I remember a village called Nottington was within a day's ride from Camelot." Arthur said "Does it still exist?"

Typing into her device, Sally brought up a holographic map. "Seems it's not called that, anymore. And it's not a village. In fact, there's basically nothing where Nottington once stood. But, I can pinpoint its coordinates and we can go from there."
She then looked at Arthur and Merlin. "Any other locations?" she asked. "If I got three or more locations, in different directions, the more accurate that we can be with a possible location of the place."
Arthur shook his head. "I'm afraid my long sleep seems to have affected my memory. I can't seem to remember much else of Camelot's surroundings."

"Nottington was about five miles south of Camelot, as I recall." Merlin said "Does that help?" Sally typed on her device again "Well, it gives us a general area, at least. If we're going to get there before the Nazis, the fastest way would be to fly. Honey, if you would?" She looked to Rodger, who hesitated. "But what about your fear of heights?"

"I think this is more important than that. I'll deal with it. Just be sure to fly high enough that you could be mistaken for a bird, should anyone happen to see us."

Nodding in understanding, Rodger transformed into his full dragon form.
"How are you afraid of flying?" Alabama asked.

Sally looked at him. "Piece of advice - don't use firearms or other projectile-based weaponry while fighting someone on the same spacecraft as you, unless you're wearing a space suit that's rated for space combat."

"Wait, you were fighting someone, in Space?" Alabama asked.

"Space pirates, and those aren't easy to fight if they board your ship, because you, quite literally, need to get a bit Medieval, when it comes to combat," said Sally.
As everyone climbed onto Roger's back, Sally shut her eyes tightly and tried to take steady breaths. "Head west, Honey. If you see what looks like the ruins of an old castle, let me know."

"Hang on, everyone. The high altitudes can get rather rough if you're not used to it." Roger said, flapping his wings and taking off.

As they flew, Arthur chuckled to himself. "Never thought I'd actually fly on a dragon's back, even in my days as king."

"In those days, you would have sent your knights to kill the dragon, sire." Merlin reminded him. "True. But back then, we had never actually seen a live dragon. Not even reports of one."
Alabama heard Sally muttering something as they flew. In fact, it reminded him of the Hebrew language, specifically, some sort of prayer. He wondered what had happened to the skunk during the mentioned space fight.
         Taking his whip, he tied one end to one of the spines along Roger's back, he felt her stiffen a bit as he tied the other end around her waist.
         "Don't worry, just keep call Sally. Just securing ya."
Sally reached behind herself and grabbed Alabama's hand, squeezing it. For such a skinny young woman, her grip was remarkably strong. In fact, Dr. Smith felt as though the bones in his hand would be crushed at any moment! Trying his best to not cry out, he gave Sally's hand a light squeeze in return, trying to help relieve her stress and anxiety.

I really hope we get there soon, he thought, I don't know how much more I can take.

Meanwhile, back on the ground, A german scout was watching the skies with a pair of binoculars. He nearly did a double take upon seeing what looked like a huge flying lizard in the sky. Better report this, he thought, though he was sure command would think him insane. To his surprise, after he reported his sighting via radio, the commanding officer asked which direction the flying lizard was headed, rather than cursing him out for wasting their time.

"Some sort of ruined castle down there," said Roger. "Might not be the right one, but might be worth looking at."
         Upon landing, Sally amazingly disappeared in a split second, only to be seen on the ground, kissing it as though she hasn't seen it in ages.
         Yet, back with Alabama, he was busy tending to his hand as he, and everyone else got off Roger as he returned to his smaller form.
Before the group was the remains of what had once been a mighty fortress, but now was but a shadow of its former self to say the least. "Well Arthur, does this place look familiar?" Alabama asked. The former king looked around for several moments, trying to see if anything there would jog his memory. "I think we're in the right place." He finally stated. They approached the entrance, which was blocked by a rusty old portcullis. "So, how do we get in?" Asked George.
"That isn't a problem," Sally said, as she looked at Roger. "Mind being a gentleman?"
         Nodding his head, Roger stepped forward to the door before setting a hand on the cold door. With a light grunt, he pushed forward, and amazingly, the door opened wide and remained on the hinges.
         Taking a bow, he acted like a usher at a theater, making Sally giggled as she stepped forward ans walk past him, making sure to run a finger under his jaw.
         "Thanks dear. Keep it up, and I might treat ya to something special later.~"
Entering the courtyard of the ancient fortress, Alabama looked to Arthur and said "Well? Does anything look familiar to you?" Arthur looked around, and a glint of recognition could be seen in his eyes. "Yes...This is the place, I'm sure of it!"

"So where's this vault at?" George asked. "If my memory serves right, it should be beneath my old throne room." They made their way to the great hall, which was filled with various signs of how long the place had been abandoned. Cobwebs, faded and tattered tapestries, rotted old furniture, etc. Arthur couldn't help but sigh at the state of his once great home.

"If only you could have been here in Camelot's glory days." He said with an heir of sadness. They came to the end of the hall, where a throne would have once stood. "What now?" Sally said. "I'm afraid this is where my help ends." Arthur said "I can't seem to remember exactly how to proceed."

"Everybody look around." Alabama said "There must be a hidden switch or something nearby."
Sally pulled out her scanning machine. "Let's see what we got."

"So, just how good is that?" Alabama asked.

"Got you out of that tomb in Egypt," said Sally. "Trying to find some hidden chambers shouldn't be that difficult."

"But, what if it doesn't work?" Alabama asked.

"That would depend on either the magic, or the technology used to build this place," said Sally. "Doubt that the technology would do something, but magic might."
         Walking about, George took to leaning against the stone wal. Unfortunately, the stone he leaned against moved into the wall, opening a secret passageway with Excalibur at the other end.
         "Found it!"
The group approached the sword with a sense of awe, unable to believe that they were really in the presence of the legendary blade. Even after all these centuries, Excalibur looked as sharp and polished as ever. The sword itself was embedded in a large boulder. "The sword in the stone." Alabama chuckled.

Sally couldn't help but chuckle too. "Disney will actually put out a movie with that title in about twenty years, telling how Arthur became king." ""What is a movie?" Arthur asked. "Basically moving pictures that tell a story." Alabama explained. "Arthur smiled "It's good to know even after all this time, people still remember me. Anyhow, I'm sure you all know the legend, that only the rightful ruler of England can pull the sword from the stone."

Arthur stepped forward and grasped the handle of Excalibur, giving it a tug. But to his surprise, it wouldn't budge! "What trickery is this?" Merlin sighed. "I was afraid of this. As you said, my liege, only the rightful ruler may retrieve the sword. Your time as ruler has long passed. Which means only the current monarch can free the sword from the stone."

Arthur, looking insulted at the situation, asked "Well then, just who is the current monarch?"
"Either King George VI, or Prime Minister Winston Churchill," said Sally. "Actual rule via kings and queens has been over for some time, but they learned how to play the political game, especially where the hearts of the people are concerned. As for those in charge - that would be Parliament, with Winston Churchill being in charge of that."

"Well, that's going to be fun," said George. "Even as a relative figurehead, the King will be well protected by the Royal Guard. You don't mess with them, despite their silly outfits. Likewise, where a Prime Minister is concerned, you're dealing with Scotland Yard, London Met, and then there's the fact that every English person would be after us if we touched either of those two."
"Where would we even begin to search for them?" Alabama added. "Churchill is probably underground in a bunker somewhere, and the King is most likely not at Buckingham Palace with the war going on. Too obvious a target for bombing raids."

"Plus, we don't really know which of them we'll need to get the sword." Said Roger. "So we get them both." Declared Sally. Everybody looked at her as if she were insane. "How do you propose we do that?" George asked with a tone of sarcasm. "I'll explain on the way. First, we need to get to London." Exiting the remains of the castle, Roger shifted into his true form once again, taking off into the clouds with everyone on his back.

Not long after they left, however, two German scouts emerged from some nearby brush. "Did you see what I think we saw?" One asked "Yes, I think I did. We should call the boss." They radioed their commanding officer to report Smith and his companions had been investigating a ruined castle.

"Stay put. Whatever they were looking for, it must be important. I'm sending a platoon to your location."

"You didn't mention the dragon."

"What? And end up in an insane asylum for the rest of our lives?"

Meanwhile, Roger flew towards the remains of England's capital. "You still haven't told us your plan." Alabama said to Sally. "Everyone listen good, because we'll only get one chance to pull this off." Sally replied.
"Basically, we get the two of them in the same place, and grab them, and we get that by sending each of them a message," said Sally.
         Hearing the plan, Alabama began to think of the only problem they may run into.
         "Then we better pick the best location that has the least amount of police and millitary traffic, just to make sure we can get the two of them out of there quickly and with the least amount of trouble."
George spoke up "Just how do we send them a message when we have no idea where either of them is?" Sally smirked "Oh, don't worry. I have just the plan for that, too."
Sally tapped a few things on her device. "Okay. Got the DNA signatures locked in. Now, to find them."

© Copyright 2023 Johnny Foxx, BIG BAD WOLF Happy July 4th!, 🐺Wolfkingdom🏰, (known as GROUP).
All rights reserved.
GROUP has granted Writing.Com, its affiliates and its syndicates non-exclusive rights to display this work.
Printed from https://shop.writing.com/main/campfires/item_id/2303670-Alabama-Smith-Quest-for-Excalibur