The city of Townsville was looking a little bit sunnier than normal that day. The sky was notably bluer, the cold breakfast cereal tasted sweeter than usual, and the children were up and ready for school before their parents. That’s because this day was special!
Today was PE day at Pokey Oaks kindergarten, and the excitement was evident on every 5-year old’s face. It was more evident in their bodies, actually. All the children were jumping around and chattering together in a line outside at the playground before the bell had even rung. Heaven knows why these kids would need a PE day, they were all fit and healthy, and they played outside every day at recess. But somehow the concept of organized sports was the most wonderful and exciting thing in the world to them. And with so many healthy kiddies running around and being recorded, it would look good for the school district, so it was a winning situation for everyone.
“Okay, kids! Are you ready for Physical Education day?” Ms. Keane asked, laughing a little as the children before her roared in anticipation. “Okay, okay, settle down! Let me do roll call first!”, she chuckled to herself and glanced over the clipboard in her hands. “Allison?” “Here!” “Andrew?” “Here!” “Ashley?” “Mhmm!” “Blossom, Bubbles, Buttercup?” She smiled, knowing full well that the three fun-sized superhero girls had come to school nearly 20 minutes earlier. She just felt a certain pride to be teaching the cities’ most successful heroes, and saying their rel="nofollow" hrefs off her very own roll call list was a great way to start the day.
“Here!” The girls chimed in unison, then quickly returned to their exercises. Blossom and Bubbles stretched slowly and calmly, while Buttercup jogged in place. “You girls ready for me to whoop you in the races today?”, she scoffed. Blossom didn’t even bother to open her eyes as she responded cooly. “Remember Buttercup, we promised we won’t use our powers today, you have to beat me all on your own!” She opened an eye and smirked at her dark-haired sister. “But even if we were using our powers I would still beat you fair and square.” Buttercup froze and glared back. “Powers or not, I’ll take you down!” She was getting more and more pumped by the minute, practically bouncing and ready to bolt off at any second.
“Elmer? Elmer Sglue?” Ms. Keane looked up from the paper and scanned over the small crowd of children. “Elmer?” Just as she was writing a small x on the list, a timid voice peeped up from behind her. “H-here! I’m here, Ms Keane!!” She turned around and smiled to the panting little boy as he ran up to her, dropping his backpack and wiping sweat off his face. “S-sorry I’m late!” Elmer was looking unusually pale and exhausted. “I had a fever last night, a-and I had trouble waking up today so..” He handed her a sweaty ball of paper, she opened it up to find a note from his parents to excuse him. “Ah, I see! Don’t worry, I won’t mark you tardy.”, she said sweetly as she erased the x. “M-Ms Keane?” He looked up at her pleadingly through his thick-lensed glasses. “Can I not run today? I don’t feel so good...” She leaned closer and placed a hand on his sticky forehead, biting her lip for a moment. “Well... Why don’t you try the best you can, if you feel any worse you can sit out if you want.” She smiled and stood up again. If Elmer was feeling good enough to show up to school, chances are he would feel better as the day went on. It’d be best to let him play rather than moping alone at the sidelines. Elmer shifted around on his feet for a second. “Um.. Okay.” “Great!” Ms. Keane beamed and then returned to listing off the rel="nofollow" hrefs.
Elmer stumbled into his spot in line, placing a hand against his burning hot face. Why didn’t she let him sit out?! He couldn’t be over his fever yet, could he? He still felt so hot! Maybe he was just imagining it, maybe it’s just that his hands were cold.. Maybe working off whatever sickness he had would be a good thing.
Elmer was never a very good liar, especially to himself. He was feeling more and more apprehensive as the rel="nofollow" hrefs got closer and closer to Z. He wiped away at the sweat collecting on his face and took off his sweatshirt, tying it around his waist.
“Okay, that’s everyone! Now, it looks like all of you have stretched and gotten ready, we can go straight to the first activity!” All of the children except for Elmer cheered. “Our first activity will be a quick run around the playground to get you all warmed up, and to see who the fastest runners are, that way we can split the teams up evenly for sports!” The kids got excited, they knew that the Powerpuff girls were sure to be the best runners, so chances are they would be split into different teams. With only two teams, every kid started praying that they would wind up in the group with two Powerpuffs. The little parade of children moved their line to the blacktop, more than ready to go. The run was going to be very small, just around the playground and back to this spot on the blacktop. No problem, right? But Elmer was still uneasy and queasy, his fever was starting to bubble through his body. He clutched his stomach and moaned as the pressure built, it felt like a knife was slowly turning through the acid in his belly and ripping him up. “Blough.. M-miss Keane?”
The crowd of kids sprinted off, leaving Elmer behind. “Ah!!” He jogged after them, trying to move slowly and carefully so he wouldn’t feel any worse. But even while pacing himself the pain and heat was excruciating. Meanwhile, the super powered siblings were in a very competitive race, they chose to run along the expanse of the chain-link boundary to make it more fair to the other students. Even without using their powers, their running speed was impressive. Blossom and Buttercup were literally head-to-head as they sprinted along, neither breaking a sweat and going at their own sweet pace. Neither was putting their all, they were just going by what they assumed would be normal and analyzing to make sure their sisters weren’t cheating. Buttercup bumped her red-head rival into the fence as they got closer to the end, and Blossom yelped and stuck out her leg as she fell. Both went down and fell on their butts, letting Bubbles skip right past them. “Aw, man!”, Buttercup whined. “You made me lose!!” “You shouldn’t have tried to cheat!” Bubbles screeched to a halt on the blacktop and did a small victory dance. “Ha-HA! You guys are too completative!” “Competitive, Bubbles.” “Whatever, I still beat you both!” She smiled and posed victoriously.
While the girls were griping and the rest of the kids were closing in on the finish line, Elmer was just making his way around the playground set. His breathing was thick and painful, no matter how hard he tried he couldn’t get enough air. It felt like lead weights had suddenly strapped themselves around his ankles and were holding him back every time he tried to move forward. The feverish heat was increasing, his throat felt sharp when he tried to swallow, his stomach was on the verge of exploding, and every limb in his body ached with invisible bruises. Elmer was 100% sick, for sure. He was just about ready to fall backwards and give up, but he kept going. It was like a mechanical will pushing him forward, he wanted to stop but at the same time he just wanted to finish and sit out later, that way he wouldn’t have to drop dead on the ground and look like a total weakling in front of everyone. His vision blurred as he continued forward, and his head went blank of any thoughts other than to just keep going. The sweat dripping down his face got thicker in consistency and his skin flushed of any color.
His mask was starting to drip away and he didn’t even know.
As the kids lined up again in the order of fastest to slowest, only one student noticed that someone was missing. Buttercup looked down the row and furrowed her brows. “Hey, where’s-?” She turned around and made a small squeaky scream at what she saw. “Elmer!!” The kids looked over in a flash and gasped in shock, the newer students screamed in horror and confusion.
“Oh, my-! Elmer!!” Ms. Keane ran up to him and reached out to touch him on the shoulder. She flinched and pulled her hand back when she realized it stuck, a gooey white residue was left behind on her palm. He was leaning against his knees and coughing up thick white globs as his skin was melting away into a gooey white mess and dripping all over the blacktop. “E-Elmer, are you okay?” Of course he wasn’t. She knew that, and the students who weren’t shrieking in confusion knew exactly what was going on too. Memories instantly flooded back to the ones who had experienced the “paste-eater” incident, something they had all moved on from and tried to forget. Elmer was their friend firstly.. just because a kid turns into a giant monster one time they shouldn’t hold it against him, especially in this town.
No one had questioned when Elmer came to school the day after that monster attack, just as nerdy and normal-looking as ever. They assumed he was cured by some sort of magical chemical and that there was nothing to worry about anymore.
As the coughing became less violent and slowed down, he looked up apologetically into Ms Keane’s eyes. His glasses were glowing a strange greenish color. “I-I’m sorry I couldn’- r-run! I-I don’t feel so- g-G-BLAURGH-!!” His stammering was interrupted by a violent vomit of glowing greenish white slime, all of the kids screamed and “EEWWWW”ed. Only now did he realize what was going on, he choked and looked down at his perfectly white and melting hands. “O-Oh no!! Ms Keane, I-I-!!” He reached out and touched her vest, a trail of slime left behind in the air as she jerked back and stepped away. Thick white tears started forming at the edges of his glasses and he stared back at the crowd of kids who both were both shrieking in fear and disgust at what he had reverted to. He tried to form words but accidentally made a pasty spit bubble as his lips momentarily fused together. “Bl-p-P-please I!! I’m sorry! I can be normal again!” He sobbed and wiped at his cheeks, his hands sticking and embarrassing him even more. “I-It’s not my fault!”
Ms. Keane turned to her students, trying very hard to remain calm but the worry was still apparent in her body language. “Someone call the hospital!” A small group of kids ran inside, and the Powerpuff Girls flew up into the air. Bubbles and Buttercup floated around the kids and tried to distract their attention on something else, while Blossom floated over to Elmer, trying desperately to calm him down. He didn’t seem dangerous at all right now, just upset. Hopefully if he stopped crying and felt better, he would go back to normal soon. “Hey, Elmer, it’s okay! Don’t cry..” She put her arm around his shoulder, ignoring the gooey paste. “We can go to the Professor later and he can fix this!” Elmer whimpered and looked up. “R-really?” She smiled and tried to wipe away some of the tears on his face, getting white goop all over her stump of a hand. “Sure, he’s a scientist, I’m sure he can help you!”, she said, smiling. His face brightened a little at the thought of it and he sniffled. “o-okay.. Thanks, Blossom.”
The group of kids came back out, even more panicked than before. “We called the hospital but they hung up on us!! What do we do!?”, one of them cried. “What??” Keane responded, dumbstruck. “Well, I-” She turned and noticed the girls handling the situation. “Oh, girls, do you think you’ll be able to help Elmer with his.. uh..You know?” “Sure, Ms Keane!” Blossom answered, now that Elmer was feeling better and the kids had calmed down, it looked like the problem was fixed for the most part. Her smile was feeling a little more genuine and not just a mask to help ease the problem.
But the problem wasn’t Elmer. It was what would happen next that would open up a whole new world of problems. These were bad ones, issues their innocent hearts hadn’t even considered yet. And it was heading straight toward them, ready to overwhelm. They were about to face a problem that bore straight into the corrupted heart of Townsville and the darkest sides of every citizen living in it’s borders.
A dark van pulled up at the front of the school and 3 men in very modern bullet-proof armor jumped out, guns in hand. In a flash they had rushed at Elmer, shoved Blossom aside and aimed straight for the boy’s head. The children and Ms. Kean screamed again in terror, this time it was far more intense. They weren’t screaming because of Elmer, but for him. He was frozen in fear. “Hey!” Buttercup and Bubbles weren’t afraid of these men, they were enraged. Blossom flew at the strangers and shoved them violently away from the boy. “What’s the big idea!?” With her back turned to Elmer, two more men donned in hazmat suits hopped out of the truck and grabbed him by the arms. He yelled out for help and tried to pull away, but one of the men shoved a strange syringe of liquid into his arm. He yelped and started to zone out of consciousness, struggling with everything he had to keep his gluey feet stuck to the ground, grabbing onto the flag pole and holding on for dear life as the men dragged him along. The Girls tried to fly after him but the men with guns jumped in the way, aiming at each of them and firing a tranquilizer. The three Powerpuff Girls tried to dodge out of the way, but it was at such close range and they were still so thrown off, they had no chance. They fell to the ground with three soft thuds and their fellow students screamed again, some of them crying.
As quickly as they had appeared, the men had taken Elmer, knocked out the Powerpuff Girls, and with an ear-splitting squeal of tires they were gone.
"Did you hear that?"
The secondary Powerpuff Girls, Bloom, Bell, and Bunny, were waiting for the other Powerpuff Girls to arrive at the Powerpuff Headquarters so they could fight a new enemy.
Bell, having supersonic hearing, had heard something quite alarming.
"Hear what?" asked Bunny.
"I just heard the distressed cries of a bunch of young children and a horrified adult woman."
"Children?" asked Bloom.
"With an adult woman at their side?" said Bunny. "What's going on?"
"I'd better use my future vision to find out," said Bell.
Bell closed her eyes, and using her future vision, she projected a hologram and saw the trouble that needed to be reported to.
"Oh my!" cried Bell. "It's Pokey Oaks Kindergarten! All the students and Ms. Keane are there!"
"I can see it, too!" said Bunny.
"What's wrong?" asked Bloom. "They all seem so horrified."
As the girls took a closer look at the hologram, they could see the children, all with scared, tearful looks on their faces. Ms. Keane seemed to look as terrified as the children. As they listened closely, they could hear her wail, "No! No! Why did they do this?! Why?!"
The girls looked a little farther and saw Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup. They gasped in shock.
"Oh no!" cried Bloom. "The three primary Powerpuffs! They seem to be knocked out!"
"Something terrible must have happened," said Bell. "It must have been a huge disaster that needs our help right now. We'd better see what happened."
As Bell programmed her holographic vision, she set her mind so she could see the past. "Tell us what happened in the past," she told her hologram. The hologram's picture disappeared, and a new picture appeared in its place.
The girls watched the picture closely.
"Okay, so, it was Physical Education day at Pokey Oaks Kindergarten," said Bell. "All the children seemed so happy and excited to get fit after spending days cooped up in a classroom. See that pale kid? That's Elmer, and it seems that he looked pretty sick, even when the children were outside exercising. Must have been a rather high fever or something."
"Ohh!" said Bunny.
"Poor thing," sighed Bloom.
"Meanwhile, the girls were in a very competitive mood, and they raced each other around the playground. Of course, Bubbles won and Buttercup lost, and we know she hates losing."
"But, what about Elmer?" asked Bunny.
"Well," said Bell. "Elmer was having a tough time keeping up with the other children. He seemed to be even more sick than he was the day before. His fever seemed to be even worse. It spread from his head through his entire body. As he tried harder and harder to keep up with his classmates, the heat from his fever was getting to him."
"And then what happened?" asked Bunny.
"It seemed like his skin flushed and was starting to melt," said Bell.
Bloom and Bunny gasped.
"What?!" cried Bunny. "How in the world can someone's skin melt from body heat?"
"I don't know," said Bell. "But something bad must have been happening to him."
"What happened?" asked Bloom.
"We'll have to see more of the past to find out," said Bell. As the hologram's picture changed, Bell began to explain further.
"When everyone saw Elmer, collapsed on the blacktop, pale skin melting into a puddle of goo, they were so shocked and confused. They didn't know what happened to him. I believe that he got cursed with some sort of magical chemical or something. As Elmer struggled to tell Ms. Keane that he was unable to run, his eyes glowed a weird dark-green color and he vomited a greenish-white fluid. All the children were horrified and disgusted at the sight of him becoming a disgusting monster with melting skin. Trying to remain calm, Ms. Keane asked some of the kids to call for medical help. As the children ran inside, Blossom calmed Elmer down, saying that she and the other Powerpuff Girls would take him to Professor Utonium later. Just then, the children came back, saying that when they called for medical help, the person they called hung up on them, but Blossom informed that she would help Elmer with whatever illness he had, and everyone seemed to calm down. It seemed like the problem was fixed for the most part."
"But, then what happened?" asked Bunny.
"The problem might have been fixed," said Bell. "But little did everyone know that there was going to be an even bigger problem. And it wasn't Elmer."
"What was it?" asked Bloom.
"The new problem was a rather dangerous problem that a young child's innocent heart hasn't even thought of nonetheless. That problem had now been heading towards Pokey Oaks Kindergarten, able to overwhelm. The children were about to face a horrible predicament that no other children had seen before."
"Really? What happened?" asked Bunny.
"Unexpectedly, a dark van pulled up in front of the school and three men in bullet-proof armor jumped out, guns in hand," said Bell. "They rushed toward Elmer and pointed one of their guns at his head. The children and Ms. Keane were terribly panic-stricken."
Bunny and Bloom gasped.
"Oh no!" said Bloom. "Were they going to kill Elmer?!"
"I hope our teammates did something about it," said Bunny. "I don't want to see a small kid like Elmer die in front of anyone!"
"Luckily, they didn't shoot Elmer," said Bell. "Ms. Keane and her students were afraid of the gun-weilding men, but Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup weren't. The Powerpuff Girls flew at the strangers and prepared to attack. They shoved the men away, but unfortunately, the men must have had backup, because two more men wearing hazmat suits came out of the van. They grabbed Elmer and stabbed him with a syringe containing some sort of liquid. As Elmer passed out, they took him to the van. As the Powerpuff Girls tried to chase after the men, they threw a tranquilizing dart at Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup, knocking them out. All the children were so horrified, and they're still traumatized right now, because one of them has been kidnapped, and their three super-powered friends have been sedated."
As Bell finished recalling the past events, she turned off the hologram.
"Oh no!" cried Bunny. "Elmer's been kidnapped, the primary Powerpuff Girls failed to stop the bad guys, and the whole kindergarten class has been panic-stricken by it? This must call for us backup Powerpuff Girls!"
"Exactly!" said Bell. "We'll help stop the bad guys!"
"But, how will we do that?" asked Bloom.
"Here's what we should do," said Bell. "We'll fly over to Pokey Oaks Kindergarten to get some information on the villains. Then we'll track down the villains, defeat them, and rescue Elmer and our teammates."
The girls zoomed over toward Pokey Oaks Kindergarten. Using her supersonic hearing, Bell could hear the sound of many children squealing and sobbing, and it seemed like Ms. Keane was sobbing, too.
"I can hear it. Their cries of distress. Come on girls. Let's go help them out!"
The girls zoomed towards the blacktop.
"Oh, it's the backup Powerpuff Girls!" cried Ms. Keane. "Thank goodness you're here!"