The Mighty Ducks sat around Drake One, as Phil grilled them on the game they had the next day.

“All right peoples, listen up. It’s the last game of the season, let’s go out looking good! The New York Newts live up to their name: they’re scrawny. This should be an easy win. If you want to try stuff than normal, go ahead.”

“Yeah. Fancy. Right.” Nosedive snorted. “You make it sound like you want us to spin in the air or something.”

“I don’t DO ballet.” Duke grumbled.

Phil held up his hands. “Guys, guys. I said if you wanted! I just want them to remember you next season!”

“Well, I think they’ll remember us.” Tanya said. “I mean, we WILL be saving Anaheim about once a week.”

“Whatever. I’m going home. See you all here tomorrow, 7 sharp.” Phil left.

Mallory turned to Wildwing. “Are you feeling okay? You didn’t say much back there.”

Wildwing rubbed his head. “I don’t feel very well. Look you guys, Phil is right.” The other ducks looked horrified. He waved his hands. “No, not about that. I want tomorrow to be a game to remember. Which is why you’re in charge tonight, Duke. I’m going to bed.” He tossed his mask to Duke, and got up.

“Why can’t I be team leader? I bet I’d make a swell leader!” Nosedive complained.

“Duke’s had more experience.” Wildwing mumbled, getting sick of having the same argument over and over again.

“It isn’t about experience.” Nosedive yelled.

“Then what is it about?” Mallory yelled back at him. She folded her arms.

“It’s about enthusiasm. And you’re always telling me how I excel in that department. Come on Wildwing, please? Nothing’ll probably happen tonight anyway!” Nosedive begged.

Wildwing rubbed his head again. “Oh, fine.” He was sick of Nosedive’s complaining. “But you be very careful. And don’t be afraid to step down. I’m sure no one will pay you out if you do. Am I right?” He looked to the other ducks. They all looked doubtful, particularly Duke and Mallory. But they nodded. “Good. Look after the team, Nosedive. I want you all to come back.” Nosedive nodded vigorously. Duke tossed him the mask.

“Whoa, neat!” Nosedive ran around scanning the computer. Wildwing gestured to Duke.

“Look after him please. I know it’s gonna be a rough night, but who knows? Maybe he won’t ask again.” Wildwing whispered.

“Babysitting, great.” Duke groaned. “But I’m warning you Wildwing, that kid’s gonna have to watch it. He just better not order me around, that’s all.” Duke and the others followed Nosedive to the Migrator, except for Grin.

“Do you think I’ve done right?” Wildwing was regretting his decision.

“It’s like the old baby bird story. If you don’t let them try, they’ll never fly.” Grin said before moving off.

“You make me sound like a suffocating parent.” Wildwing sighed, and he went to bed.


“Whoa, MAJOR disturbance at the dam guys!” Nosedive cheered while looking at the scanner. “Time to rock and roll!” He jumped to the drivers seat and started up the Migrater. Mallory rolled her eyes, and Duke nodded.


When they got to the dam, Nosedive gave his orders. “Er, we go up quietly in a group, find them, beat them, and then we go home. OK?” The others nodded their agreement. They crept out of the Migrater. From their position they could see the shilloette of two figures standing on the dam edge. Nosedive motioned the ducks down, and they crawled up to the two figures.

“Scan them.” Duke whispered.

“Oh, right. I was about to do that.” Nosedive whispered back. He scanned the figures. “Saurians, all right!” He almost jumped up, but managed to hold back. Tanya put her hand over her eyes. “Oh boy.” she muttered.

“On three. One, two....three!” Nosedive yelled the last word. The ducks ran up towards them.


“Wait till they get here. We need a clear shot at the base neck nerve clump.” Siege told the Chameleon.

“Yeah yeah yeah.” said the Chameleon. He morphed into the Terminator. “Asta la vista, duckies.” he grunted, waving a curious pink gun down the slope.


The Mighty Ducks aimed their guns at the Saurians, trapping them on the edge. They fired on them, and the Saurians started shooting back using small guns. Nosedive suddenly realized that the Chameleon had a clear shot at Mallory. The Chameleon pointed his gun at Mallory, while she was busy with Siege. He pulled the trigger.

“MALLORY!!!!!” Nosedive yelled as he shoved Mallory out of the way. He screamed as he was hit in the shoulder. Mallory fell to the ground. Everyone stopped fighting after hearing Nosedive’s scream. Duke narrowed his eyes and grabbed Nosedive’s puck-shooter. He stood in front of Nosedive and Mallory firing relentlessly at the enemy. Tanya, Grin and Mallory followed his example. The Saurians “left” in a hurry.

All the ducks crowded around Nosedive’s limp form. He had a sharp red hole on the bottom of his neck. He didn’t move.

“Nosedive? Nosedive can you hear me?” Duke said loudly into Nosedive’s ear. There was no response. “I think we better get him to the sick bay, pronto.” Duke was worried.

Tanya was feeling around the other side of Nosedive’s neck. “Don’t bother.” she said quietly, feeling sick. “He’s dead.”


The ducks slowly walked out of Nosedive’s room, where they’d put his body. Mallory closed the door, and slid down it, to sit on the floor. “I don’t believe it.” she said flatly.

“I know what you mean.” Tanya sat down beside her. “I keep hearing his scream echo. I feel like screaming myself, actually.”

“Don’t be sad for him.” Grin intoned. “He is at peace.”

Mallory was not in a good mood. “You don’t know that.” she said angrily. “He could still be hurting somewhere.” She banged her head against the wall. “ARGH! I’m going to go think. Someone better tell Wildwing.”

“I’ll do it.” Tanya sighed.

“No, I will.” Duke said. “He told me to look after him, and I failed.”

“Well, maybe if I had payed a bit more attention, he wouldn’t be lying there!” Mallory’s voice broke, and she started to cry. She jumped up and ran to her room. Duke started to follow her, but was held back by Grin, who silently shook his head.

“I’ll tell him.” Tanya said again. “YOU can tell Phil.” She hurried towards Wildwing’s room before Duke could argue.

“Great” Duke groaned. He rushed off in the opposite direction.

Grin thought for a minute, then went to the gym. Not much else to do.


Tanya nervously knocked on Wildwing’s door. No answer.

“Er, Wildwing? Are you, like, awake?” She knocked again. The door slid open.

“What is it Tanya? I’m trying to sleep.”

Tanya fumbled with her fingers. “I’m not sure how you’re going to take this.” she mumbled.

Wildwing rubbed his head. “Tanya” he said in a patient voice “Is anything on fire?” She shook her head. “Is Draganus in the Pond?” She shook her head again. He sighed “Is anyone screaming in pain, hmm?” Tanya paused. Wildwing froze.

“Well, no, not now.” Tanya almost squeaked. The look on Wildwing’s face was thunderous.

“OK, what did he do? That’s the last time I put Nosedive in charge.” Wildwing pounded his fist on the door. He was feeling very tired, angry and he had a pounding headache.

“You’re right, it is the last time.” Tanya was getting less and less willing to divulge the news. He just looked so angry...

“What, you all voted or something? Tanya, WHAT IS GOING ON!!!!” he was only half listening when Tanya spoke.

“Nosedive is dead.”

“OK, Tanya, thanks for telling me, though, next time wait till morning.” Wildwing went back into his room, and shut the door.

Tanya stared. Wildwing opened the door again.

“What did you say?”

“Wildwing, Nosedive was hit by Draganus’s goons. He died.” Tanya said gently.

Wildwing’s face twisted from one emotion to the next. Disbelief, anger, sadness. “I don’t believe you.” he said evenly.

“Wildwing, I’m so, so sorry.” Tanya wiped the tear that was forming in her eye away.

“NOOO!” Wildwing yelled, full of pain.

Through out the Pond, each duck heard it. Mallory, in her room, Grin in the gym, Duke, staring at the telephone. They all winced. “Poor Wildwing.” was whispered by all the ducks at once.

Wildwing pounded and kicked at the wall. Tanya stood well back, knowing there was nothing in the world she could say or do that would make his pain any less. Then suddenly, he stopped.

“I’m sorry Tanya.”

Tanya hugged her leader as best she could. “That’s OK. Remember, we’re always behind you.”

“Thanks. Where..where is he?”

“In his room.”

“You didn’t take him to the sick bay?”

She shook her head.

“Yes, well, I guess there was no point. Tanya, I have to see him. Oh, how are the others? How are you?”

Tanya could see that Wildwing was just asking out of duty. “We’ll see you later.” She gave him a little push.

Wildwing tried to smile at her, and he ran down the corridor.


Grin put one last punch onto to the punching bag. He closed his eyes. He missed his friend already. He went to bed, and fell into a dreamless sleep.


Tanya lay in bed, reading. It was already two in the morning, and she never slept well normally. She rolled onto her stomach. “Hey, we don’t have a hockey team anymore!” she said aloud.


Duke was sick of staring at the phone. Phil was coming at 7 anyway, he could find out then. Personally, he didn’t think Phil would be very sympathetic. He grabbed some snacks from the fridge, and fell into the chair in front of the TV, trying not to think how this had been Nosedive’s favorite pastime after hockey and crimefighting.


Mallory lay on her back, staring at the ceiling. She couldn’t get the fact that Nosedive was gone out of her head. It rolled around her brain, like a penny in a piggy bank. He’d died to save her. And she’d been so nasty to him beforehand.


Wildwing stared at his little brother. The mask had been left near Nosedive’s feet. Wildwing picked it up, and weighed it in his hands. He’d forgotten to ask exactly how Nosedive had died. Oh well. Wildwing was about to put the mask on Nosedive, but changed his mind. He put the mask back on the bed. He checked where Nosedive’s pulse should have been. Nothing. Breathing, the same. The sheet had been pulled up to his chin, and he pulled it down to locate the bullet. He found it immediately. It didn’t look that bad actually, but he supposed it depended on what angle it entered, and what it had hit inside. Maybe a major atery...

“Oh Nosedive, I shouldn’t have put you in charge. But you wanted to so much, and I..and I...Dive, I can’t fix my mistake. I just wish it hadn’t ended like this. What will I tell Mum and Dad? If we ever get back to Puckworld, that is. You’ll never see it now.” Wildwing fingured his brother’s hair. He remembered how his mother had told Nosedive to let her cut his hair, but Nosedive was always adamant. Wildwing put his head on the edge of the bed and slept.


The ducks sat around the kitchen table, silent. Wildwing was staring unseeing at the table, and the others all exchanged glances. They’d found him in Nosedive’s room that morning, and made him come and eat breakfast.

Tanya spoke up. “Did you tell Phil?” she asked Duke.

“No.” he answered shortly. He looked at the clock. It ticked to 7. Phil burst in.

“Good morning everyone! All set for the big game today?” he looked around. “Where’s Nosedive? I told you all to be here.”

“He’d dead.” Wildwing was sitting with his back to Phil.

“Huh? Yeah, very funny. Come on, ah, Grin, go wake him up.”

“No, Phil, he is dead.” Duke stared at Phil, trying send him some sensitivity. No such luck.

“How can you play without a player? Why didn’t you tell me before? I could have a gotten a replacement!”

“Is that all you can think about?” Mallory yelled at him. “Hockey’s a game, this is someone’s life we’re talking about.” She clenched her fists. She tried to calm down, but failed. “I’m leaving, before I punch you.” She stormed out.

Phil looked guilty. “Well, yeah, I’m real sorry for you guys. You’re all pretty close. But someone has to think of these things.”

Tanya, Grin and Duke glowered at him. Wildwing’s shoulders slumped.

“We could play without him. We’ll have to. But I just don’t think I can do it.” Wildwing muttered.

“Phil, what if you ask for a day of hockey silence in Nosedive’s memory? That way people will remember us, and we don’t have to forfeit.”Tanya suggested, trying to please everyone.

Phil perked up, but Wildwing interrupted.

“No. We’ll play this game. For Nosedive. Phil, I’d like to talk to the others for awhile. Could you?”

“Sure.” Phil backed out of the room.

“What happened last night?” Wildwing asked.

Duke explained. “We went to the dam to check out a disturbance. Siege and the Chameleon were there. We crept up to them, and there was a shootout. Mallory was fighting Siege, and the Chameleon shot at her. Nosedive saw what was going to happen, and he pushed Mallory out of the way, and took the bullet for her. He died almost instantly.”

“Poor Mallory. She’s taking this hard. How are you guys?” He looked at them.

“We’ll all miss him.” Tanya mumbled.

“Yes, but we just have to carry on.” said Grin.

Wildwing looked at Duke.

“I’m sorry Wildwing. You told me to look after him, and I didn’t.”

Wildwing put a hand on his friends shoulder. “I don’t think there was much you could have done. I feel to blame too, for making him leader when he probably wasn’t ready.”

“But didn’t he do what a leader should?” Grin asked. They stared at him. “Wildwing would have done the same for any of us, we all know that. A leader’s job is to protect the others. That’s what Nosedive did. You should be proud of him.”

“Oh, but Grin.” Wildwing said bitterly. “That doesn’t bring him back, or make us miss him any less.”

Grin shrugged. “The truth is not always wanted.”

Duke slammed his fist into his palm. “I say we go out there, and get those Saurians! Pay back!”

Wildwing shook his head. “ Number one, we have a game to play. Number two, we have a funeral tomorrow. Number three, I saw Nosedive’s wound. It’s small. They have a new kind of weapon. They only need one hit, and you’re dead. We have to be extremely careful. Got it? I don’t want any heroes. Especially dead ones.”

Duke folded his arms, but said nothing.

“I’m going to find Mallory. You guys go warm up for the game.”

They all nodded, and left.


Wildwing figured that Mallory was probably in her room. He checked, and she wasn’t. He then checked Nosedive’s room, but she wasn’t there either. He then remembered what Mallory had said about punching Phil, and he went to the gym. Bingo. Mallory was listlessly punching a punching bag, obviously not really thinking about it. Her anger had died away. Wildwing watched, trying to get a handle on the situation. She sank to the floor, and lay still. Wildwing rushed over.

“Mallory! Are you OK?” he cried, bending down. She rolled over.

“Yeah.” she mumbled. “I’m just tired.”

“Why don’t you go take a nap in your room? We have a game in about an hour and a half.”

She groaned. “Wildwing, you know very well that we are in no condition to play. Do we have to?” She was almost whining.

Wildwing raised an eyebrow. “Mallory, that isn’t like you.”

“Yeah, well, I’m just in a bad mood, okay?”

“Mallory, I’d like you to play. I’d like us to play for Nosedive. But I’m not going to make you. That would be very insensitive.”

She rubbed her face. “Are the others playing?” He nodded. “Well, then I’m in. But just let me nap here for an hour. Wake me up then.” He nodded again. She closed her eyes. Wildwing walked to the door. He turned and said, “Mallory, it wasn’t your fault. It wasn’t our fault at all. It was the Chameleon’s fault. He pulled the trigger. Remember that.” He left.

A single tear slid down Mallory’s beak, but by the time it dripped off the end, she was asleep.


Later, the ducks went out on the ice. The crowd was silent. The ducks looked around uneasily.

“Now I know how stand up comedians must feel.” Duke muttered. They gathered in the center of the ice, and held their sticks up in the air.

“For Nosedive.” Wildwing intoned. They whacked their sticks together, and took their positions.

Since Grin and Tanya were the fittest, Wildwing had asked that they try to take some of the heat off Mallory.

The game started. The Duck’s defense was unwell, and their attack wasn’t the best either. Even so, they managed to win the game 5-4. When the game finished, they Ducks skated off in silence.


“Mallory, are you coming with us, or are you going back to bed?” Wildwing asked the red-head in the lockers after the game.

“Where are you going?” she asked, puzzled.

Wildwing concentrated hard on getting his gear off. “We’re going to find a nice place to bury Nosedive, somewhere out of Anaheim.”

Mallory straightened up, and thought for a minute. “Yeah, count me in. I’m feeling a little better now anyway.”

Wildwing patted her on the back. “Good. I wanted you to help.” He finished with his stuff, and left.


They flew all over Anaheim. “I don’t know.” Tanya said. “I don’t think he liked nature much anyway. Why should we bury him there?”

Duke shrugged. “Cause we can’t think of anything better?”

“You know what I think?” Mallory spoke up. Everyone turned and looked at her.

“Only you know what is in your heart.” rumbled Grin.

“Thanks.” Mallory rolled her eyes. “Why don’t we just bury him somewhere for now, and when we beat Draganus, we take him back with us? I bet your parents would like that, Wildwing, plus he never particularly liked Earth.”

They all turned to Wildwing. He slowly nodded. “Good idea. We’ll bury him...” He scanned the horizons. “There.” He pointed to a spot next to a creek just outside Anaheim. The ducks nodded, and they flew home.


Mallory was wandering aimlessly around. Duke was doing some sword practice, Tanya was testing her never-ending amount of equipment, Grin was meditating and Wildwing..well, she just didn’t want to see Wildwing. He made her feel more guilty. She found herself outside Nosedive’s room. She sighed, and went in.

She sat down on a chair next to him. “This is YOUR fault you know.” she said to his still form. “I never asked you to save me. That was your choice, and I wont feel guilty for it.” He, of course, remained silent. She suddenly grinned. “You know, you can’t talk back now. In fact, you can’t stop me from doing anything anymore! Like this.” She ruffled his hair. “Or this.” She walked her fingers down his profile. “Or even this!” She scratched him under the chin. “You like that?” She scratched more.


Mallory’s hand froze. Her eyes widened. She frantically scrabbled around for his pulse, but couldn’t find one now. She felt it! She KNEW she had! She gave up with finding a pulse, and placed her head on his chest, listening. She suddenly felt his chest rise ever so slightly. She was shivering, but kept her head there, willing it to happen again. She stayed there for half an hour, but nothing else happened. She shook him hard. “Nosedive, come on!” She kept yelling at him, and was so absorbed by what she was doing, she didn’t hear the others come in, after they had been attracted by her cries. She was suddenly aware of their gazes on her back, and she slowly turned around. They were standing in a line, and staring. Mallory could detect concern in their eyes, with a hint of amusement from Duke. She tried to explain. “I felt his heartbeat! And then he breathed! I waited for ages, but it didn’t happen again. But I know I felt it. He’s alive, guys!” The spark of concern grew greater. “He is.” She finished weakly. Wildwing walked over and squatted down in front of her, forcing her to look at him.

“Mallory, I know what you’re feeling. And it’s hard. But Nosedive is dead, and he isn’t and can’t come back.”

She grew angry. “I know what I felt. I’m not stupid.” She caught Duke sending a look to the others. She scowled. “Or crazy.”

Wildwing sighed. “Trust me Mallory, I wish with all my heart I could believe you, but I can’t. How can he be alive when he has no heartbeat?”

Mallory waved her arms in the air. “But he DID!”

Wildwing took the others outside. Deciding what to do with me, Mallory thought bitterly. They came back in and surrounded her. “I’m sorry Mallory, but this is for your own good.” Wildwing told her, as Duke grabbed her from behind. Mallory was furious. She couldn’t believe what was happening. She lashed out against them, forcing them back. Although she was out numbered drastically, they didn’t want to hurt her into submission, and she was absolutely focused on escape. She broke through and raced out. She headed for outside, not really thinking. Duke turned to Wildwing. “Do I..?” gesturing after her. Wildwing nodded. “You’re the only one who has a chance. But hurry!” Duke raced out, chasing her. He lost sight of her at the junction between the corridor to the rink, Drake One and the garage. He gave up, knowing that Mallory was fast and with her head start he’d never catch up. He turned and headed back to Nosedive’s room.

Wildwing was staring at Nosedive. “Do you think she could be right?” he whispered. Tanya shook her head. “Sorry, not a chance.” Wildwing turned away. “She just needed more sleep. The sedative would have helped no end.”

Grin grunted. “She thought we were going to lock her up, take her to an asylum.”

Duke snorted. “I thought she had more sense.”

“Oh, leave her alone! Don’t you see, now there’s only four of us!” Tanya cried.

“We’ll just have to go ahead with the plan without her. We can’t put off the funeral any longer.” Wildwing thought out loud.

“Yeah, he’ll start to smell.” Duke cracked a very weak joke.

“What is wrong with you?” Tanya asked. “I think you need more sleep too.”

Duke looked at the others. Grin was emotionless, Tanya indigent, and Wildwing pained. He put his hands up. “Fine. Maybe we all need some extra sleep.”

Wildwing nodded. “Good idea. How about we all go rest. I don’t want any more Mallories.”

The other ducks nodded their ascent, and the four all fell asleep almost immediately.


Mallory sat shivering outside the “Duck Dogs at the Pond” sign. She KNEW she was right! Knew, knew, knew, knew, knew!!!!!

The thing is, she thought, he’s alive now...kind of, but how long will it stay that way? It was such a tiny wound, it was strange that it could cause so much damage. It must have been those weird guns the Saurians were using. So, how to find out the “cure” or whatever? Get into the Raptor, and steal it, or something.

She started shivering again. Not that she was scared, but it was a sort of suicide mission. No it isn’t, she told herself firmly. Just sneak around quietly. Tomorrow. I’m too tired tonight. So she’d go sleep somewhere the others woudn’t find her, get up early tomorrow, grab the Mask and a duckcycle, and find the Raptor. Then sneak in, snoop around, cross that bridge when it gets there. She went back into the Pond, grabbed the mask from Nosedive’s room(not bothering to check his pulse or breath) and lay down to sleep behind the far bed in the sick bay.


Mallory awoke with a start. She glanced at her watch. 5:00am. She jumped up, tucked the mask into a pocket, and quietly ran to the hanger. She looked around carefully for Grin or Tanya, knowing that they woke before the others. She found a duckcycle and sped off.


Mallory put on the mask and activated it. She drove past all the tallest buildings in Anaheim, scanning each one. She finally found the Raptor, on the other side of town. She parked the bike behind a skip, and carefully passed through the cloaking device. She looked all around for a place to get in, then remembered about a small hole she’d blasted a few weeks ago.

Creeping slowly around to the back, she found that they hadn’t patched it yet, and she slipped through. She considered taking the mask off, but shrugged, figuring it might confuse them for a moment if they saw her.

The good thing about the Saurians was that they were always getting new gadgets, and they were great to hide behind. Unfortunately, it meant that the interior was always different and it was easy to get lost.

The lab should be over here somewhere, Mallory thought. She crawled over to a doorway on the left, and went through.“Bingo.” she muttered.

There were so many bits and pieces of machinery, chemical bottles and file drawers that the room seemed to be huge, but squashed. Mallory walked over to where the guns were on a shelf. Her eyes scanned them until she found the small pink kind. She carefully lifted it off the shelf, and was surprised at its lightness. It seemed to take very small bullets, and could only hold about six before it needed refilling.

Mallory heard footsteps coming. She hastily put the gun back on the shelf and dived behind a sort of tractor. She made sure she couldn’t be seen, and started wondering what on earth the tractor was for.

The lab door slid open, and Draganus, Siege and the Chameleon walked in.

“So, the ducks have lost the kid. Well, well. Show me the gun that did it.” Draganus was almost happy.

Siege grabbed the gun that Mallory had been looking at. “Here you are, your dreadfulness.”

Draganus slowly turned it over in his hand. “THIS?”

The Chameleon morphed into Einstein. “When the bullet contacts with warmth, it immediately dissolves into a poison. When that toxin hits the nerve clump near the collarbone it forces the body into a kind of sleep. The heart beats once per minute, same with breathing. Makes the victim look dead, and, well, that’s about it.”

Draganus snarled. “That should be impossible. The body can’t survive like that.”

Siege laughed. “You’re right. That kid’s gonna die for real in, ohhh, about an hour. Unless he has the antidote, of course.”

“What’s the antidote, and why did you make one?” Draganus asked.

“Another shot by the gun directly where the last landed reverses it. We thought that would be good if one of us got hit.”

Draganus rubbed his hands together. “Well, those ducks aren’t going to know that! That duck is only the first to go.”

Mallory growled. “I’m way ahead of you, lizardlips.”she grumbled quietly.

Chameleon changed into his normal form, and start jumping up and down.

Draganus started pacing. “The funeral is probably today. Why don’t you go and plant a little surprise for when they return. Like, say, a nice big condolence bomb?”

Draganus’s laughter shook the building. “You find a bomb in this dump. One with a timer. I’m going to have some breakfast.” He left, still laughing.

Siege started poking around. “Can you remember where we put that bomb that we were going to use on the Empire State Building?”

“Wait, I’ll check the files. What would it be under?”

“Err, try Major Landmarks in the Bombing drawer.”

“Oh yeah, right.” The Chameleon fingered through the many papers. “Here it is. Third shelf on the Major Explosions aisle, near Shrapnel.”

Siege walked down a long path in between many shelves. “Found it.” he called out.

“Good. Put it down near the door, and we’ll go have breakfast. It’s almost 10.”

They talked happily as they left, thinking that this might be the day they were rid of those pesky ducks for once and for all.

Mallory swore. How had it gotten to 10? She came out from behind the tractor thing and grabbed the gun. She knew they had more, so perhaps they wouldn’t mind much about this one’s disappearance. She peered out the doorway. Noone around. She ran to her hole, and jumped out. She climbed onto the bike, put the mask in her backpack, and raced for the otherside of town. She headed for where they had decided to bury Nosedive. But she was thinking about how Nosedive really was alive, and not concentrating on the road, and she sped through a “give way” sign. A truck hit the back of her bike, and that sent her tumbling on the road. She was alright, but the bike was crushed. Mallory immediately jumped up and started running. If she wanted to get there before they buried Nosedive, and before he died for real, speed was everything. Mentally she kicked herself for not suggesting that they bury him in town.

By the time she reached the creek it had been an hour and a half, and the ducks were covering Nosedive’s coffin with earth. Mallory yelled to them. “Stop! Get him out!” They all stared at her, not moving. “You heard me! Get him out now! Come on!”

She ran over and started to scoop off the dirt. Wildwing pulled her out of the hole. “What’s going on Mallory?” She froze, trying to think of the quickest way. She grabbed the pink gun of the holster where she’d put it, and pointed it at Wildwing.

“Guys, get Nosedive out of that coffin NOW!” She backed up so she was behind them all, still pointing the gun at Wildwing. Wildwing paused, then turned and lifted the lid off the coffin. With the help of Duke he lifted Nosedive onto the grass. They stood and looked to Mallory. She nodded. “Good. Get back.” She moved the gun’s aim to Nosedive’s shoulder. The moment she did so, Duke jumped over both of them, and pinned Mallory’s arms behind her back. She didn’t struggle, simply said “Guys, trust me. Just trust me.”

Duke slowly released her, and Mallory took her aim again, and fired. It was a direct hit. Wildwing stared at Nosedive, then turned to Mallory.

“You owe us a pretty good explanation.” he commented. She had opened the Migrator door(which the others had used to get there) and yanked out the stretcher. “Help me roll him on.” she half-ordered. Tanya bent down to help her. They put Nosedive on the floor in the Migrator, and Mallory waved them all in. “I’ll explain on the way.”


“Important things first.” Mallory started when they got going. “Draganus’s goons are in the Pond as we speak, planting a bomb that will go off a little while after we enter. They won’t be expecting us, and since we know the Pond like the back of our wings, this should a cinch.”

Wildwing started to wonder why he never put Mallory in charge.

“How do you know all this?” inquired Duke causally.

“I paid a little visit to the Raptor.” grinned Mallory. “That reminds me.” She pulled the mask from the bag and handed it to Wildwing. “Thanks for the lend.”

Wildwing checked it over, then put it on. “No problem, I guess. Could I inquire why you simply had to shot Nosedive? Is he really that annoying?”

“Gee, this is hard to explain. OK, see, this gun,” she pulled that famous pink gun out “Doesn’t have real bullets. It has these bullets that are just poison containers. When the ‘bullets’ hit someone where Nosedive was hit, the toxin puts them in a kind of coma come suspended animation. Their heart and breath slows to once a minute. And it makes them look dead. After a while, they really do die. If you shoot them again in the same place, it, well, rather conveniently, fixes the victim. The problem is, I was a bit late getting to you’s, because I had a little accident with my duckcycle on the way.” Mallory was squatting next to Nosedive, and she started checking his vital signs. He didn’t have any at first, but she finally found a faint heart beat getting slowly stronger, with breath accompanying it. “Yes.” she hissed.

“Is he...?” Wildwing couldn’t finish.

“Yup. All yours.” She stood up and replaced Wildwing up the front. “Thank me later.” she grinned.

“Oh, I will.” Wildwing smiled back. “Hey Nosedive.” he whispered. “Come on, Dive, wake up.”

“I doubt he’d wake up for awhile yet.” Tanya pointed out. “Why don’t you just cover him with a blanket or something. We’ll have to leave him when we get there anyway.”

“Which is just about now.” Duke told them from the drivers seat.

“OK.” Wildwing quickly found a blanket. “See you later.” he told Nosedive as he patted his arm.

“Check his PC is working.” said Grin.

“Why?” asked Wildwing, as he checked.

“I don’t really know. Just a feeling.” Grin said thoughtfully.

Wildwing stood, as the Migrator lurched to a stop. “OK, lets go in there quietly, stay together, watch our backs...”

“Kick their sorry behinds and have lunch.” finished Duke.

Wildwing laughed. “Whatever works.”

“One thing.” Mallory walked to the door. “We have to be careful. We only have two of the special bullets left.”

“Then I’ll go in front.” Wildwing put his shield up.

“Is that thing warm?” asked Mallory, pointing to the shield.

Wildwing shrugged and held it out for her to touch. She did so. “It’s a little bit warm. That’s good.”

“Is that because the bullets, like, sorta dissolve against heat?” Tanya asked.

Mallory rolled her eyes. “Yes Tanya, and I’m not giving you the satisfaction of asking how you knew that.”

They walked out of the Migrator, Wildwing first, then Tanya, Duke,Grin and Mallory. They peered into all hallways, puck shooters(and sabers) at the ready, but the Saurians were nowhere to be seen. After they had checked the whole Pond, they sat down next to Drake One.

“They must have already gone.” Duke frowned as he looked around them.

“Yeah.” Tanya agreed. “Which leaves us with a bomb somewhere here.”

“Great.” Mallory muttered.

“Perhaps less talking and more action is the key.” said Grin.

“He’s right. Spilt up and search the entire place. Let’s go.” Wildwing spoke as he stood up.


Nosedive slowly came to on the floor of the Migrator. He blinked a couple of times, and tried to move. He felt like he’d been hit by a truck. A heavy truck. A heavy truck carrying two tons of cement that didn’t stop. It took him 5 minutes to roll onto his back. He closed his eyes and lay there, wondering what the others were doing, and exactly why he was on the floor of the Migrator.

He heard two sets of footsteps, and was about to try and call out when the two people started speaking.

“Those duckies won’t know what hit them!” the Chameleon whined.

Siege chuckled. “Yeah. You locked all the doors?”

“Yup. They’re stuck like chickens in a hen house with a fox.”

“They’ll never find the bomb where we hid it! They need to do something about the back of the computer, so many wires got tangled trying to shove that thing in place.” Siege said as he rubbed his hands together.

“Spring cleaning maybe. Not that they’ll ever have to worry about that again!”

They both laughed long and hard, Draganus was going to be pleased.

“Come on, we still have to put up the video camera outside, so Lord Draganus can watch, and that thing explodes in ten.”

“Don’t I know it.” muttered Siege, as they zapped outside.

Nosedive listened till he was sure they had gone, dragged his left arm onto his chest, and turned on his PC. “Wildwing, come in.” he gasped, out of breath already. This was gonna take longer than he’d thought.

“Nosedive!” Wildwing could only see the Migrator roof in his communicator, but he knew the voice.

“Listen. The bomb is in the back of Drake One.” Nosedive gasped, taking a breath after every few words. “Explodes in 5 minutes.”

“Tanya! The back of Drake One!” yelled Wildwing, as she was just in the next room. She ran in. located the bomb, opened it and fiddled with a few wires. “Don’t worry, it’s a fairly simple one.” she told Wildwing. “If I, like, yank this...there. All clear.”

“Good one Tanya. Tell the others.” he congratulated her.

“No problem.”

“Hey, Nosedive?” Wildwing spoke back into the PC.


“Nice to have you back.”

Wildwing heard a short laugh come snort from Nosedive.

“Big bro, I have no idea what you’re talking about, but it sounds disgustingly sentimental.”

Wildwing laughed. “There’s been a lot of it around. Hey, we’ll come and get you.”

“Aww. How nice. You mean I don’t get to sleep on the floor tonight?” Nosedive retorted sarcastically.

“Fraid not. See you in a minute.” Wildwing closed his communicator, grinning his head off. The others walked in and saw him.

“I assume that dopey smile means we have a hockey team again?” Duke folded his arms.

“Uh huh. What say we go take him to the sick bay? He sounds like he needs it.” Wildwing started walking towards the door.

“What say we let the little critter fry for making us worry?” Duke asked, faking innocence.

They ignored him.

“What? Gee, everyone’s been so uptight lately...”


After Nosedive was on one of the beds in the sick bay, and had had something to drink, the ducks crowded around him. “So, guys, what happened? I mean, one minute I’m feeling oh so gallant, then the next I’m dumped on a floor!”

“Er, you’ve been a few more places than that.” said Tanya.

“Well, after you pushed me out of the way, they hit you just under the neck. Yeah, that red hole. Yuk, don’t stick your finger in! Anyway, we got rid of the Saurians, and we checked you. You were dead! No heart beat or anything! So we took you back and just left you in your room. So then we had to play our last game of the season down one player, but we won anyway. By the way, that game was dedicated to you.” Mallory started.

“I need to do this dying business more often.” Nosedive muttered thoughtfully.

“So we found a nice place to bury you and all. I was kinda talking to ya, and I found that you had a pulse! I tried to tell the others, but they tried to lock me up...”

Wildwing waved his hands in the air. “About that. We just wanted to give you a little sedative. We thought you needed more sleep.”

“Whatever. I ran off with the mask, crept into the Raptor, found out how that gun that they shot you with worked. It just, well, hard to explain. I also overheard them talking about bombing the Pond while we were at your funeral.”

“Boy is this morbid.” Nosedive winced.

“Would you quit interrupting? You wanted to know! Anyway, the others had decided to have the funeral without me. I tried to get there as fast as I could, but I had a small accident with my cycle. So I got there just as they were burying you.”

Duke butted in. “So there she was, pointing a gun at us and telling us to dig you up. And I’m thinking ‘there’s something seriously wrong with this chick’..”

Mallory playfully slapped him. “Thanks a lot!”

Duke shielded himself and kept going. “She points the gun at Wildwing, so we all do what she says, and then she acts like she’s gonna shoot you! I grabbed her, but in the end she convinced me. So she shoots you in the same place as the first time...”

“That was the sort of cure.” put in Tanya.

“...Then she and Tanya put you in, and we flew to find the Saurians in the Pond. You know the rest.”

“Wow. What a long, boring story.” Nosedive grinned. “I’m glad I’m not dead though. Well, DUH, who would be glad?”

Grin looked at his watch. “Siege and the Chameleon. I bet Draganus is interrupting their karma as we speak.”

Nosedive was feeling much perkier. “So when can I leave the infirmary?”

Wildwing looked over the medical readout. “I think in a few days. There’s a lot of poison in your blood, you’d be too weak to do much anyway.”

Nosedive grumbled but kept quiet. Tanya and Grin left.

“Well kid, I’m glad you’re back. But don’t ever pull a stunt like that ever again, you hearing me?” Duke said as he followed Grin. Mallory walked over to Nosedive’s head, and Wildwing politely looked away into the medicine cabinet.

“Thanks for saving me.” whispered Mallory to Nosedive. Nosedive shrugged, embarrassed. “Forget it.”

“Well, I’m still grateful.” she said, giving him and quick kiss on the forehead before leaving. As soon as she was gone Nosedive rubbed his forehead.

“They were pretty upset when they thought you were dead you know.” Wildwing told his brother. “Mallory and Duke both felt guilty.”

“Why would Duke feel guilty...oh, you told him to look after me didn’t you? Wildwing that is so patronizing!” Nosedive was clearly insulted.

“Look Dive, I wanted..oh forget it! I missed you, alright. I did! The reason that I try to watch out for you is because I care. I don’t want anything to happen to you. I let you be leader, and you got killed...sort of. I felt guilty too you know.” Wildwing lost control of his normally carefully held back feelings and yelled. Nosedive closed his eyes.

“I’m sorry. It’s just hard being looked down on.”

“We don’t...”

Nosedive held up his hand. “Just worry about them as much as you do about me, OK? Then I think you’ll be a great team leader.”

Wildwing smiled. “OK, I promise.”

Nosedive closed his eyes. “I’m tired. That means I’d like you to go away.”

“Fine. See you later.”

“Yup.” Wildwing walked to the door, then turned to glance at him before he went. It was good to have the whole team again.

Nosedive opened an eye when he thought Wildwing had left. He slowly stood up and walked down the halls to his room. He went in, and collapsed on his bed with a phone. Dialing Phil’s number he lay against his pillows and waited.

“Hello, Phil here.”

“Phil, it’s Nosedive.”

“Nosedive? Aren’t you meant to be...GHOST!”

Nosedive stifled a laugh. “Listen Phil. Promise me that the ducks will never have to do another photo shoot they don’t want to, or I’ll haunt you forever...” He let the last word linger.

“OK, OK I promise!” Phil sounded upset.

“Good. Bye Philly.”

Nosedive hung up, and went to sleep with a goofy smile on his face.

Story Copyright Rachel Baker ‘98. All characters Copyright Disney, and used without permission.