Different Worlds

"…Okay, we come in here, here and here…" The officer in charge of this particular campaign pointed with his stick to points on the diagram.

Ducklyn wasn’t listening. "We’re the cream of the military, and we fight pickpockets. Is it just me or is something wrong with this picture?"

Mallory didn’t take her eyes off the map. "These pickpockets are stealing military secrets for a bet. For fun."

Dade leaned over to join the whispered conversation. "Think of it like you’re saving the planet. Always works for me."

Mallory finally glanced at him. "For all you know, we could be. We don’t know what these scum will sink to. You do want to wake up to a working base tomorrow, right?"

The twenty members of the Puckworld Special Force, eighteen males, two females trooped off down the corridor and into the night.


The Special Forces weren’t the only ones out late. Duke L’Orange, a Raptrin and a young duck who called himself Cutter were also awake past bed time.

"An’ the best part of it is that they don’t suspect a thin’…" Duke sniggered. Falcone nodded.

"I say, this bet is frightfully easy. Boy, you ready there?"

Cutter bit back a comment at being called ‘boy’. "Yes sirs. Try the front door."

Duke patted Cutter’s back and stood. "C’mon Fal, our public awaits."

"Ooo, don’t mind if I do…"


The room was very dark, but Duke and Falcone found their way through fairly easily. Everything was going according to plan. It was, as Duke put it, like someone somewhere was watching out for them. Or at least watching them.

"Go find the one outside," Mallory hissed to Ducklyn and the ducks on either side of her.

"Yeesh, Ms Bossy is in fine form tonight…" Ducklyn grumbled, but went.

Mallory counted off the steps in her head. Door… SLAM! Lights… FLASH! And spring… While Duke and Falcone struggled to regain their sight, a flock of captors surrounded them. Duke shot a grappling puck towards the roof, grinning and waving when he began to be hoisted above the heads of the other ducks. Mallory quickly ended his ride with a puck through the rope, and he was forced to make a hurried landing, with handcuffs at the end of it.

"Y’know, ya should at least check I didn’t sprain my ankle," Duke complained until he caught sight of the owner of the cuffs. "Hey, Fal, check it out, I got the cute one…"

"Quiet," she ordered, in a tone that would make most wither. Unfortunately, Duke had always been one to live on the edge.

"What’re you doin’ Saturday, sweetheart?" He suddenly found himself beak-to-beak with another officer, and the look on Dade’s face was not a pleasant one.

"Make one more pass at her, and that saber of yours finds it’s sheath in your stomach."

"Geeze, a simple ‘she’s busy’ would’ve sufficed…" Duke complained as he was led away.

"You’re my hero," Mallory said dryly. Dade looked sheepish.

"I think I have a jealousy problem."

"If you’re jealous of some two-bit thief, then there *is* a problem."

The cries of dismay drifted into the compound from out the front, and Dade and Mallory ran to see what the problem was. "They got away! Just like that!"


The two looked each other with the same sort of expression you’d have if told you had to share your bedroom with a dead rat. "No. Way."

"He’s a thief!"

"She’s wound *far* too tightly."

Mallory folded her arms. "And what exactly is that meant to mean?"

"It means that you’ve got absolutely no sense of humour."

"And you’d know by meeting me for two seconds? I at least have a reputation to base my complaints on."

Duke was about to open his beak and keep arguing when they were interrupted by a rude but well-timed voice of authority. "You are both on the strike force. You will both work together. You will both enjoy it. Do I make myself clear?"

"Yes sir," Mallory muttered. Duke said nothing. He knew enough about this girl to know that she was the nasty kind. And that was the end of the story.

‘Story’ by Rachel Baker ’99. Dade Pintail and Ducklyn Copyright Rachel Baker. Cutter Copyright Starsong and used without permission. Duke, Falcone and Mallory Copyright Disney and used without permission.