When a former animal-control officer gone crazy brakes out of jail and steals Marlene from the zoo to capture the penguins, they knew it might be mission impossible to save her, but with Dr. Blowhole being the secret to X's success and La Phantasma (aka: King Julien's twin sister, Duchess Lucinda) getting herself into the mix, could it be a trap within a trap?!
It was all over the news: the man that goes only by the name of "X" escaped prison! Even the penguins saw the clip of the jail-break, but they knew that he wouldn't go near them unless they were stray animals... he was trained that way. Little did they know, X was going on the wild side of things, and was about to break all the rules he knew to get revenge, and started by making an alliance with an illegal fur-trader (known only as "Strips") that wanted to get a hold of the coat of an Asian otter, and would've gone after the "pretty-thing-in-the-zoo" himself if not for the fact he isn't as young as he used to be. Somehow, "Strips" knew more about the penguins and their "secret world" then most other people did, including the fact that the lead penguin, Skipper, has a crush on the otter he wanted (Marlene), and the "penguin-credo" happens to be "never swim alone", which means that if he comes to save her, the others will follow... into a trap. X should've been suspicious about this fur-trader, but was desperate to insure that these "natural-law-breakers" make there final transfer, from Central Park Zoo, to a place many refer to as "The Pound".
That night, X was outside the zoo walls. Everyone of the animals seemed to be fast asleep, except the lemur habitat. "Lemurs! The redefinition of party animals," X huffed, "even the ones meant to be up during the day are found of the night-life, and that makes them prone to cause trouble. I don't know how the other animals sleep though all that noise, but I should use that to my advantage."
He snuck from one habitat to another when the lemurs were least likely to notice him, and X even came across the Penguin HQ, and saw they each slept in their own bunks and had blue earmuffs on their heads. "Well, that explains a lot." He said, and he almost reached in and grabbed them, "Steady X," he said, stopping himself, "if that 'Strips' person was right about this otter, they will come to you." He placed the communication hacking chip "Strips" gave him onto the main circuit of HQ instead (unusual device: It was shaped like a very tiny crab, and for some reason it was had a picture of a dolphin on it... the dolphin that used to amuse him on Coney Island as a kid, until the "ring of fire" stunt caused it to loose an eye!) and went to scout other habitats, until he found the Asian Otter Habitat. Marlene also was sleeping with earmuffs (pink ones with purple stripes)... and she snores! "The head-honcho of that flightless flock has it in for this?! No matter, this is a desperate time!" with the music blaring from Julien's boom-box, and the rest of the zoo had its ears covered, X didn't think that Marlene's startled scream would be heard, but it did... and it thrown his royal majesty off balance, then made him wonder what's going on, then redirected his attention to the strange man stealing Marlene. He tried to save her himself, but this person had "dangerous magic", from a stick full of what felt like lightning to him, and with Mort following with a camera (and Maurice making sure he doesn't just take pictures of the feet), chased this man as soon as he came to his senses, but was knocked out by some kind of gas-package as soon as the otter-napper was in the van driven by the one he called "Strips". Maurice held his breath, and was able to carry King Julien and Mort all the way to the Penguin habitat, were he removed the earmuffs on each bird, and blew a reveille tune to wake them (The gas-package X thrown was so powerful that not even that trumpet-blast could wake Julien, and Mort would've slept through anything once he got cozy with the royal feet). Kowalski made an aromatherapic remedy to revive there honorary member gradually, but the sight of Mort "getting too close" did the rest before explaining the battle, and showing the pictures his servants took to prove it. The license plate number from the last photo was just being written down when Officer X himself appeared on the HQ TV. "My new friend, Strips, know a lot about you penguins," X said, "The winkies thing amused me, but since he claims to take animal skins and sell them for money, I think payback time will make more sense for both of us if I took one that the so called leader-of-the-flock cares about up for ransom." He shown the caged Marlene on screen, who was struggling between controlling her savage side and calling for help. "Want her back... alive? I recommend a trade: her life for yours, and just to prove that you'd follow through on this, I expect the other three to turn themselves in at the pound, or I'll insure Strips get's his otter coat! Excuse me..." he started to shouted off-screen to a fur-trader (one that even the recovering Mort recognized as a robot), "Hey! Strips! You didn't say anything about a lemur being crazy over this chainsaw as well!" ("Making fun of a lady that snores," Marlene scowled, "typical!") "Must've slipped my mind," said a mechanical voice from the fake human, "Just tell them that they have until sunset tomorrow to make the trade in the underground passages under Little-Italy... at my old age, it takes that long to sharped my knifes for such a job, whichever of them it'll be." "You heard him: Little-Italy catacombs, sunset, or else!"
Julien wanted to tag along, but Skipper refused to allow it "I'm the one he wants ring-tail! Me, my team, and my life." "Luckily for us, Officer X never was too bright," Kowalski stated, "even a total knucklehead couldn't be fooled by something like this!" "It's true," giggled Mort, "who does that robot think it is fooling?"
"Never mind that!" snapped Maurice, "The real question is: who in the world built that robot!"
"I have an idea on whom," Skipper said, "but that's theory will have to be looked into... later! Right now, we have to get to Little Italy and save Marlene. Ringtail! You and the other lemurs stay here and look for clues as to how he was able to send us that message! Never in all my days did a human hake the system, and we have to be sure it doesn't happen again."
"<Grr!> Fine, I'll be staying here!" (Julien didn't like this, but at least he was glad to be useful for something ion this mission.)
"Kowalski! Ready up some decoys for the cages in case X doesn't live up to his half of the deal!"
"I could work up one for you as well, Skipper!"
"Negative! Unless something distracts him from all four of us, you have to carry out this one for me! Rico, Supply yourself with whatever necessary! Private! It's your turn to arrange transport, and make sure it's something fast this time! With the sun coming up by now and the traffic thickening early this time of year, we only have twelve hours to take the long route before it's too late! Commence Operation:..."
"Deal on Wheels?"
"Oo! That's better then your 'steal wool' pun! I was going to use something else but, hey, why not?"
They put it to action in minutes, as Private managed to "score" a ferry from a visiting European stuntman, but as they penguins revved it up to go Julien shouted out: "Skipper! Needless to be reminding you, my sister is a bounty huntress, so you happen to run into her, let her know I'm looking forward to her visit next Fun-Day... that, and that I want her to fetch the wedding cake I hid on the roof of the Little Italy church; I DID NOT FINNISH IT!!!"
"If we see her, we'll let her know! Let's roll!"
After a quick drive to Little Italy, and when Kowalski found the catacombs through his own intellect (and an old map of NYC), they had plenty of time to find the location the message originated, and saw Marlene (who managed to control herself) trying to trick the lock with a Popsicle stick, which somehow set on fire in the process. "An Electra-anti-hack in an 18th century cloaking?!" Kowalski was impressed and confused at the same time, "those don't go off the market until 2012! These gadgets were either stolen or built by a maniac!" "Or both!" Private pointed to an image that seemed to be a dolphin silhouette on a scooter.
"Blowhole!" no sooner did Skipper say his enemy's name did each of his team-mates get put into cage traps and whisked to separate rooms in the catacombs, while he himself was wrapped in some kind of grappling foul to X's mercy! "Strips figured you might try to show up early and try to worm your way around this!" "I should've known this was too easy!" Skipper struggled.
"I'm not gonna wait for him to sharpen his knives," X grinned, holding up his newest weapon (a sinister version of Kowalski's laser-saw!) "Once your out of the way and your rookery is permanently caged, I'm going to reward him by letting him have the little-lady's fur coat!"
For the first time in years, Skipper was helpless, but just when all seemed lost, a familiar snicker was heard in the background and something whizzed toward X, but the man caught it before it could prick his skin: the Dart of shame! X saw the mysterious robed figure behind him, and laughed at her, "Since when do ghosts need injectors to make people afraid of them? If anything, La Phantasma, you should fear me!"
Julien's bounty-hunting sister looked least like a lemur in her "uniform", but Skipper saw the look in her eyes from a distance...
... the same look that the king himself has whenever he's planning to do something reckless, stupid, of both, yet her version was spiced up with wisdom from experiences outside getting spoiled, as though she actually knew what she was doing. Soon enough, she tussled with X, using water-balloons with dehydrated "potions" mixed in (temporarily turned him into a statue, twice, then momentarily shrinking him, then making him insubstantial long enough for him to get his boots stuck on the wall) and launched from a slingshot, spitballs and appears to have lost, but she really stolen the laser-saw, and freed Skipper while whispering "I got him warmed up for you. You release Marlene and allow her to use her wild side; I'll find and free your comrades so you'll have backup. Get-it-got-it? Good!" Skipper followed through on Duchess Lucinda's plan (though after the laser-saw tricked the lock, he had to anger Marlene to loose the control she practically had) and as Skipper and the wild otter were keeping X busy, the rest of the team, reunited, charged in to help. Soon enough, it was over, at least for X, who lost the battle and found himself tried up by the mystery girl.
"I may be a little girl in the big city," Duchess Lucinda said (shivering, since she wore cotton this time), "but with me helping you and you helping me, we've caught ourselves a big bounty. My people family shall feast for weeks... technically, it should be months, but you deserve a share in the loot."
Kowalski brought out his abacus. "With you only doing a 20% share of the damage on this criminal, though it's logical you could've done more if our separate cages weren't spread out in a nine-mile radius, I'd say a 64/36 split might be the most fair way to..."
"Negatory Kowalski!" Skipper said, "I know how underpaid fishermen of her 'Pappy's' status get... of all cruelties. Anyhow, she needs that bounty more then the rest of us do."
"As if that'll matter," Private said in sorrow, "and I don't mean to go against my usual nature or anything, but there's no way anyone will pay her, even for this!" Rico nodded in agreement. But Skipper was way ahead of things...
After returning themselves, and Marlene, back to the zoo before it opens, another newsflash came up on the television the next morning:
X Marks his Spot, claims that La Phantasma gives nightmares even to him as he is sent to a higher security prison, yet the NYPD claims that, rather then an assault of a tiny vigilante girl, it was Pablo Dehauntedo, AKA "Pappy the fisherman", AKA "Old Man Fishy", that caught X in his new net, though the old man himself claims that he has no idea how he caught such a "prize" catch.
"Speaking of catches," King Julien gloated, "look what I..." (Maurice cleared his throat, Mort shown his sad-eyes) "...I mean, we found clinging itself to your seeking. This crab-thing has a dolphin painted on it, I think we all know what it means!"
"Sure do ring-tail," Skipper said, "although I can't make sense of this."
"Regretfully, it's all the same here Skipper!" Kowalski said, "After all, it's bad enough to learn that Marlene's former room-mate, Rhonda the walrus, is indeed a spy for the enemy, on account that they've stolen my invention, but there's no logical sense as to why Dr. Blowhole would team up with X, when that psychological maniac and pathetic excuse for a dolphin hates humans!"
Skipper slapped Kowalski in the face as Private asked "You think that maybe he's just using X? After all that 'Strips' robot was programmed to fool him." which made them realize they forgot to destroy the robot, which Dr. Blowhole was uploading footage from in that very moment, after it payed X a visit in prison. "I really hate humans," Blowhole sneered, "Although X did prove himself useful. I should bust him out so we can do it again, but personally next time... half a year from now sounds about right. In the meantime, let's see if the Simulator Tape-Recording Intelligence Probe-droid System had picked up on anything that makes this La Phantasma so special." Dr. Blowhole did his evil laugh, and did it so hard that he fell of his scooter. "I hate it when that happens... but I still hate humans more!"
END OF ARTICLE