Nina Paley's Fluff
Checkers The Pirate
Written by Ian Akin
Drawn by Nina Paley

National Police Week
The Escaped Animals
Terrible Mother (Sunday)
The New Guy
Prey Of The Month (Sunday)
The Cat Whisperer
Checkers' Ark (3 Weeks)

Week 2






Panel 1: Checkers comes up to Sasha and Elba, (Snark in background) dressed as a pirate, with a parrot on his shoulder.
He's got a bandana on his head and a peg leg, possibly an earring.
Checkers: 'I've decided to become a pirate, so I'll be feared and respected!'
Parrot: 'Pieces of Eight!'
Panel 2: Checkers points proudly to his eyepatch, Snark looks up at Parrot, slurping. Parrot looks down, dismayed.
Checkers: 'Plus, I've already got an eyepatch!'
Parrot: 'Awk!'
Snark: 'Slurp!'

Panel 1: Sasha to Elba, while in background Checkers is prancing around piratically, Parrot on his shoulder. Checkers and Parrot's balloons are smaller.
Sasha: 'You don't see many pirates these days…'
Elba: 'Oh, they're still around!'
Checkers: 'Blow me down!'
Parrot: 'Awk! Wanna cracker!'
Panel 2: A corpulent corporate raider sits behind a huge desk, fat cigar in his mouth. Standing behind one shoulder is a yes man, looking parrot like- Elbows out, beak nose… (He should look almost like he's on the Boss' shoulder).
Boss: 'Phelps, I'm taking over two more companies today!'
Phelps: 'Yessir! Awk! May I have a cracker, sir?'

Panel 1: Sasha asks Checkers, who looks slightly indignant. From off panel come a few musical notes.
Sasha: 'So, Checkers, now that you're a pirate are you going to take over a ship?'
Checkers: 'A ship? I'm a land pirate!'
Parrot: 'Awk!'
Sound Effect: 3 or 4 musical notes.
Panel 2: Checkers sees an Ice Cream truck, with musical notes. (Can you make the Ice Cream truck look scared?)
Checkers: 'Belay there!'
Parrot: 'Shiver me timbers!'
Sound Effect: A buncha musical notes, perhaps 'Turkey in the straw'. (Just joking- I don't expect real music, unless you want)

Panel 1: Sasha and Snark look very innocent (Haloes?), Checkers is handing Parrot over to them. Parrot is alarmed.
Sasha: 'We'll watch your parrot while you get that Ice Cream Truck, Checkers!'
Checkers: 'Gee, thanks!'
Parrot: 'Awk! Walking the plank!'
Panel 2: Checkers eating a pint of Ice Cream, several empty containers lie about, a hill of full ones is behind him. Sasha and Snark look full and contented.
Checkers: 'Want some Ice Cream?'
Sasha: 'No, thanks. We're full.'
Panel 3: Checkers looks worried, Snark belches a feather, which slowly flutters to the ground.
Checkers: 'Hey, Where's my parrot?'
Snark: 'Burp!'

Panel 1: Checkers sits on his butt, forepaws holding his temples, brow furrowed in pain. All around him are empty Ice Cream containers. Sasha is pointing out the obvious.
Checkers: 'I'm gonna have to stop being a pirate- It makes my head hurt!'
Sasha: 'It's 'cause you ate all that freezing cold Ice Cream!'
Panel 2: Close on Checkers, looking relieved.
Checkers: 'Oh, whew! I was worried it was my conscience!'
Panel 3: Checkers munching down some more Ice Cream, a few pain lines coming from his head.
Sound Effect: 'Chomp! Slurp! Gulp!'
Checkers: 'Ow!'

Panel 1: Checkers digging a hole, a pile of Ice Cream containers nearby. Sasha pokes her head into the panel.
Sasha: 'Whatcha doin'?'
Checkers: 'I'm burying my leftover pirate booty!'
Panel 2: Checkers holds up a badly drawn map, with a prominent 'X'.
Checkers: (thought balloon) 'Now what should I do with the map?'
Panel 3: Checkers, map in teeth, digs another hole. You can show it's right next to the first by showing a mound with a couple of empty ice cream containers next to it.


Panel 1: Sasha and Snark come running excitedly up to Checkers, Snark is holding a treasure map with her teeth.
Sasha: 'Snark found a treasure map in the backyard!'
Panel 2: Sasha on one side of panel, Checkers on other. Each have a thought balloon, and they share a word balloon. In Sasha's thought balloon is a treasure chest overflowing with catfood, catnip, pillows, cat toys, fish, string… anything a cat would think of as treasure. In Checkers' thought balloon is a garbage can overflowing with garbage- bones, old boots and just generally disgusting stuff.
Checkers/Sasha: 'Wow! Buried Treasure!'
(If this seems too much like that Sunday, 'catfood/dogfood', substitute Elba for Sasha, and make her Chest full of really upscale stuff)

Panel 1: Elba's showed up, and is holding the Treasure map. Sasha gestures towards the map, Checkers excitedly heads towards the edge of the panel.
Elba: 'I can't read this Treasure Map.'
Sasha: 'That looks like a tree…'
Checkers: 'The Park! Lots of trees there!'
Panel 2: They're now in the park, Elba concentrating on the map, Sasha looks up at a bunch of trees, Checkers runs in circles.
Elba: 'I think it says 10 paces from the tree.'
Sasha: '???'
Checkers: 'We'd better just run in circles and then dig randomly!'

Panel 1: Checkers goes up to a Squirrel, who looks paranoid, totally squirrelly.
Checkers: 'We're looking for buried treasure…'
Squirrel: 'Keep away from my nuts man!'
Panel 2: Checkers asks a dog who's splayed over a mound from which protrudes a bone or two.
Checkers: 'We're looking…'
Dog: 'They're my bones! Mine!'
Checkers: (Thought balloon) 'It's sad how selfish everyone's become…'
Panel 3: Checkers turns irritatedly towards a Pigeon (or three) who comes up to him.
Pigeon: 'Spare crumbs?'
Checkers: 'Get a job!'

Panel 1: Sasha looks over at a pigeon or three, licking her chops. Elba begins to pontificate.
Sasha: 'Are pigeons good?'
Sound Effect: 'Slurp!'
Elba: 'Some consider them vermin, but are we really any better?'
Panel 2: Close on Elba, going on.
Elba: 'Is 'goodness' defined by our productivity, or by how we treat our fellow creatures?'
Panel 3: Sasha stalks toward a pigeon, while Elba goes on.
Sasha: (thought balloon) 'I'll just have to taste one myself.'
Elba: 'Bla bla bla…'

Panel 1: Elba unrolls the Map, Sasha points a paw at it.
Elba: 'Let's look at the treasure map again.'
Sasha: 'Hey! This is the backyard!'
Panel 2: Elba, Sasha and Snark are digging away. Sasha is somewhat dreamily imagining an impressive looking pirate- he could be next to an overflowing treasure chest. The pirate could have a peg leg, hook, those blouse things, boots and baggy pants, whatever you want. Could be a woman pirate, for that matter.
Sasha: 'Wow! Pirates of long ago buried treasure in our backyard!'
Panel 3: Elba recoils in surprise from what she sees in the hole. Sasha's thought balloon *poof!*s into an image of Checkers the Pirate.
Elba: 'Melted Ice Cream?!!'

Panel 1: Checkers trots up to Sasha and Elba. Sasha thrusts map at him, Elba has hands on hips. If you can, show the pit with goop at the bottom.
Sasha: Checkers, this map led us to melted ice cream!'
Checkers: 'So that's where I buried it!'
Panel 2: Elba and Sasha are disappointed, Checkers can hardly believe their disappointment.
Elba: 'We were expecting doubloons and fine silk!'
Sasha: 'And Catnip!'
(Or 'and fish!' or 'and string!')
Checkers: 'You kidding? This is way better than that stuff!'
Panel 3: Checkers slurping away prom the pit, Sasha and Elba are a bit grossed out.
(Another end would be the 'Do we have any straws?' line)