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Figuring it'll be a great gift for Maurice's birthday, Duchess Lucinda "borrowed" Kowalski's lab equipment (in advantage to them being away on a mission... see Private on Danger), to make a serum to clone her brother into several man-servants. Upon King Julien drinking it (Lucinda, by an accident not done on purpose... though a happy accident to improve Maurice's milkshake recipe), it was soon found that the charm worked at a price: All the doppelgangers lacked the few braincells the real-deal had, and what's worse is that the Julien they are all are used to is beginning to get ill since his essence (life force, will power, physical strength, etc.) had left him in the form of at least six or seven impostors that are dumber then a sack of hammers... at least without the AI colliers she made... to insure enough knowledge for them to understand what's being commanded of them. Will the graduated alchemist be able to fix all this before the penguins get home?
Maurice's birthday was just around the corner, and as usual Duchess Lucinda was letting her schedule get out of control. Although she proved her wits against Clemson and a love-cursed Skipper over the winter, she was spending a few weeks of spring making sure that Sala (the squirrel woman that taught her so much) didn't leave anything out before crossing over... after all, the duchess is no longer an apprentice, but now a full fledged alchemist. King Julien, her twin brother, shook his head, "I know you want to be preparing the party for Maurice perfect-ic-ly sis, but none can throw a proper shin-dig without help. I should be knowing, I tried!"
"Thanks for the offer, big brother," Lucinda smiled (Julien was at least three minutes older then her) "You set the table and write up the guest list, and I'll take care of everything else: balloons, streamers, hors dourves, refreshments... I am thinking of making a mini-duplicate of the wishing well at the front gate, only mine squirts all sorts of beverages. A one of a kind model, I say!"
"Err, not really sis... from what the zookeepers are gossiping, it's been done already! Besides, I meant that you do what you were already doing, and I shall supervise you to make sure its perfected."
"Oh for guavas sake! I should've known... good thing I can find more helpful help in this zoo then your annoying cons into tyranny!"
"Speaking of 'annoying', where's Mort?"
"Haven't seen him... not since I sent him out to get a birthday banister for the party."
As if on cue, Mort ran in carrying a party banner for sure, but faster then he can shout "Ta-da!" he unfolded it to reveal he grabbed the wrong one in a stroke of stupidity:
CONGRATULATIONS: IT'S A GIRL!
"Note to self," Lucinda grumbled, trying to ignore her brother's crazy laughter, "send someone else to get banners for annual events. I'd send you to do it bro, but I can't leave you alone for 2.5 minutes without things going wrong... I never would've waited for you to goof up to test you with that 'I told you so' if I known you'd fail that one!"
"You are lucky there's only one of me, sis. Come on, Mort, let's go see which between us can spit the most gum into Missy Alice's hair."
Mort followed eagerly: "I like gum!"
With that, Lucinda was alone, except for the birthday boy who eavesdropped on the whole thing. In a heart to heart chat between the two, Maurice admitted that a few extra Julien's wouldn't be too bad, so long as they aren't as bossy as the original:
"I know you are trying, Duchess, but it is your brother's debt to pay for overworking me, not yours."
"Well, as adviser, you aught to do the task of telling him that yourself, right?"
"Maybe, but that would be breaking rule number one, and that rule clearly indicates 'never question the king'!"
"Don't tell me, let me guess: 'never question the king'!"
Broken up on how annoying that rule is, the young duchess got an idea of what to give Maurice for his birthday, but she figured she needed gear from Kowalski's lab, since the science half of her alchemy set was too flimsy for what she had in mind. Luckily, she noticed that the penguins where on the way out, saying that Private was in danger. Usually, she hates following her brother's philosophy that borrowing without permission is okay so long as the objects are returned before they are missed, but Lucinda knew it was necessary to get Maurice his birthday gift.
After whipping up the chemicals, she decided to test it on one of her brother's discarded flawed-crowns (Julien always had spares on the ready), but the minute the drop touched the crown, rather then making more spares, the whole thing started on fire. Discouraged by the failure, Duchess Lucinda was about to dump it when Marlene popped in and startled her, causing the formula to fly right out of the workshop window and into one of Maurice's smoothie mixtures to keep King Julien from fussing. Julien wasn't poisoned by the accident (thank goodness) but the minute he was complementing how it's the second best to "the usual secret ingredients", he passed out, something of him glowed from the inside out, and the apparent essence of the king split into seven clones while the original fell unconscious! Lucinda was just about to congratulate herself when she noticed a fault: along with having different personalities (each based on a different side of how her brother usually thinks and acts) they were all stupider then Mort!
Lucinda was just about to make collars for them to install artificial intelligence (smart enough to know the tasks, but programmable enough so they won't object to them) but the clones were equals in every once of energy divided into seven, but an annoying factor multiplied by seven! All the while, the original didn't look too good (and it truly was a powerful sickness, as he didn't seem to care when she told him so), when it dawned on the lemurs that if the king's essence stabilizing the clones isn't returned to him soon, they might lose him Idiotic by worse or not, the clones where not so easy to round up, and though it was easier to dissolve the clones, one by one, back into the real Julien by getting them close to him, they didn't return to the energy state fast enough to avoid the commotion catching the eyes of the penguins, as all four returned from their misadventure. King Julien was dazed, as his consciousness was all over the place (and he wasn't as much a multi-tasker as his sister), but the young duchess actually felt worse, as she had to explain the whole ordeal to the entire zoo, and apologize for her foolish gift as well as the theft she committed to make it (thus returning Kowalski's liquids and powders). "I can't believe it, I actually was considered a full-fledged alchemist and I can't even make a clone man-servant right... what a joke! Oh well, at least I was given a decent start... what was originally in that milkshake of yours anyway, birthday boy?"
Maurice seemed hesitant about it, "Can we discuss that later? Besides, this wouldn't had happened if I hadn't told you how much I appreciated the few times Julien actually respected me. We should've had enough with only one of him."
"Well," King Julien figured, "it is your birthday Maurice, but the pampering will come after the partying."
"The party?!" Lucinda panicked, "Oh no! The decorations are still lame! and the snack table's bare! So much to do, too late to do it...!"
Kowalski was the one to stop her in her tracks, "I think what you put yourself though was punishment enough, Lucinda. I'm sure we can all pitch in to help with the party, you can just... supervise."
For once in her life, the female lemur actually took that idea as a good one.
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