In The Pit
A roar shook the colosseum. Lilo Blumario, the Roo Island star forward, had just scored against Darigan Citadel’s goalkeeper and the crowd, swathed in all colors of the rainbow, had erupted into applause. The Blumaroo took a victory jog around the field to celebrate, and then huddled at his own goal with his team to plan their next strategy.
Meanwhile, the Fire Yooyu, after regaining its bearings, was escorted back to the center of the field, and sent down into the Pit, fondly named by the pack of Yooyus who resided there for the majority of the Cup.
“How was it, Larry?” a voice asked from the dark as the Fire Yooyu descended into the shadows and the doors slid together again above him. “I heard the Blumaroo throws too hard.”
“It was fine, Norm,” Larry, the blazing Yooyu, said, rolling his eyes. His flames lit up the cramped cage, where he could see the six other Yooyus sitting around idly.
Norm, the regular Yooyu, hopped up and scurried to Larry’s side. “But everyone’s talking about how Blumario broke his sling when he was practicing earlier today! It made the front page of the Cup Daily!”
He gestured to a newsletter lying on the floor of their cage, in which the headline screamed BLUMARIO’S SLING BREAKS; MAJOR MELTDOWN ENSUES.
“I don’t want to be the one that’s in his sling when that happens again,” Norm mused. “No sir.”
A flashing red light lit up the Pit suddenly, and a voice crackled, “Clockwork! You’re up!”
A whirring began, and two green eyes emerged from the dark. The Clockwork Yooyu propelled itself into the elevator, its eyes staring blankly the whole time. Norm could hear a slight ticking emanating from the robot’s body.
Norm shuddered once it had disappeared through the opening in the ceiling. “He bothers me, that one,” he said. “Wouldn’t want to get too close to him when he’s about to go off.”
“Oh, would you shut it, Norm?” Larry snapped. “Why in the world did you sign up to be an official Yooyuball if you’re too afraid to even be slung at the goal?”
Norm fell silent, and then mumbled something.
“What?” Larry asked.
“My mom made me,” he muttered. “She said I had to or she’d kick me out of the house.”
Another Yooyu snickered. “You live with your mom?” the Darigan petpet, Karen, said between chuckles. Its eyes shone with malice. “Oh, that is precious.”
“It’s just until I can get my secretarial permit, ok?!” Norm shouted, clearly stung.
Karen only laughed louder. “Oh, you want to be a secretary? Tell me, who would hire a Yooyu to do their filing?”
Norm was silent. “Someone might,” he said.
Karen was about to retort, but was interrupted by a fourth voice in The Pit.
“Guys! Look what I can do!” the Snow Yooyu shouted, childishly, as he twisted his limbs around until he formed a sphere. “Look! I can make myself a ball!” he said happily.
The others simply stared in disbelief. Norm gave him a pat on the back as he unfolded his body. “That’s... great, Bob. Great.”
An explosion rocked the Pit. “Wonderful,” a new voice muttered crankily. The Faerie Yooyu emerged from her spot in the corner, glaring at the ceiling. “Those fools couldn’t score with that stupid robot. Someone get the wrench.”
As Norm reached for the small wrench on a shelf, the ceiling slid open. The Scorchio referee, shadowed by the thousands of cameras going off, dumped the pieces of the Clockwork Yooyu into the Pit without looking at the other petpets. “Get working,” he shouted over the roar of fans. “We’re gonna need him in the next round.”
The ceiling shut again. The Faerie Yooyu curled an arm into a fist. “Who do you think we are, mechanics?! Why don’t you come fix it?”
“Put a cork in it, Doreen,” Larry said.
“No, I will not be quiet!” she shouted angrily, turning to face the others. “They treat us like trash, when we should be the most valued members of the tournament!”
“No,” Larry argued, pointing at the disassembled Clockwork Yooyu. “I mean it; put that cork into that hole.”
The others worked quickly, replacing limbs and twisting the crank on its back. Slowly, its eyes returned to the brilliant green they were before. The red light flashed again, and the voice crackled, “Hurry up with the Clockwork! We need it ASAP!”
Doreen turned red again. “We’re working as fast as we can!” she shouted. “If that’s not fast enough for you, come down and do it yourself!”
“Shut it, Doreen!” Larry said.
“Shut what? I don’t see any hole...”
“No, that time, I meant be quiet,” Larry said. “You’re not making this go any faster.”
Doreen, fuming, fell silent. The group finished the repairs and the Clockwork whizzed to the elevator and disappeared above ground.
“They better score with it this time,” she muttered. “Or I’ll go up there myself and smack each and every one of ‘em!”
“You know, for a Faerie Yooyu, you’re not very cheerful,” Norm remarked.
“You know, for a Normal Yooyu, you’re not very funny!” she retorted, tackling Norm, who shrieked in fear and struggled under her grip. “Help!”
Bob, the Snow Yooyu, guffawed. “Haha, they’re funny!”
Larry eyed him with disdain, ignoring the shrieks. “You must’ve been thrown too hard when you were a kid, or something.”
The Mutant Yooyu, who had for all this time ignored the others and sat off by herself, glanced over. “But he’s the Snow Yooyu. He can’t be thrown too hard, he’d still move slowly.”
Larry shrugged disdainfully. “Whatever you say, mutie.”
“MY NAME IS MABEL,” she screeched, releasing thorns at breakneck speed. “I have told you again and again; why do you insist on calling me that?!”
“Because it’s fun,” Larry replied with a smirk. “You need to lighten up anyways.”
Mabel yelled and zipped towards the Fire Yooyu, shoving him to the floor and blasting him with thorns. “I do not need to lighten up! I am a MUTANT Yooyu; therefore I can be as dark as I want to be!”
Larry just laughed, increasing the blaze around his body. Mabel recoiled in pain with a screech. Meanwhile, Norm and Doreen continued going at it; or at least Doreen did, while Norm continued to struggle. The two fighting pairs rolled around on the floor while Bob and Karen watched, thoroughly enjoying every moment of it. After a moment, Karen shrugged and leapt into the riot, dragging Bob after her.
From above, a second explosion was heard, to which the Yooyus paused only for a second, to allow Doreen to scream angrily and zip through the hole in the ceiling, muttering “I’m gonna smack ‘em all,” over and over under her breath. With Doreen gone, Norm tried to escape the onslaught of Yooyus, but was dragged back in by Karen, who grinned maliciously.
“You’re not getting out that easily,” she said. “What would Mommy say?”
Norm wailed and threw up his arms to protect himself from the pelting. Bob had curled into a ball once more, and rolled around the Pit slowly, bumping into everything at his level. Larry cackled as he shot fireballs towards Mabel, who retaliated by blasting thorns back at the Fire Yooyu.
The ceiling slid open again, and Doreen fell to the floor, wings torn, carrying the pieces of the Clockwork Yooyu. “Ooooh,” she wailed. “That’ll show ‘em.” With that, she keeled over backwards, unconscious.
“Extra, extra!” The Grundo shouted as he waved the latest issue of the Cup Daily over his head. “Riot in the Yooyu Pit! All seven Yooyus injured! Matches postponed until replacements can be found!”