Last episode of Video Game Rejects saw Buddy “Big Boy” Steele, Duccio the Ninja Turtle and Lonk Jr. heading into the Dessicant Desert to wrangle a wild horse mount.

Before they could do that however, they ran into trouble in the form of a gang of talking cacti who ambushed their van, popped the tires with a barrage of projectile needles and threatened to kill them. We pick things up from there:

Buddy raised the revolver, thumbed back the hammer and fired. A gout of green blood burst from the closest cactus’ midsection and seethed as it hit the sand.


Buddy “Big Boy” Steele

Bang bang.

Ain’t so tough with your guts spilled all over the sand are ye, ye pointy ass sumbitch?

The cactus seesawed about, javelins of sunlight flaring through the fist-sized hole in its middle and then went down, a great cloud of white dust kicked up as it face-planted the sand. The organ pipe arms cruciform.

BuddyShootsPrickyColor3

Duccio

*fist-pumping*

Killer shot, dude.

Buddy “Big Boy” Steele

They didn’t ban my ass from Sunset Riders and Mad Dog McCree for nothin’, kid.

Pricky

Nooo, Brambly!

*shambling over to the fallen cactus*

Oh, sweet mother of mercy, no. Of all my sweet, spiny peers, why Brambly? It didn’t have to be Brambly you sick son of a bitch. Did my friend dirty like that, you son of a bitch! The one cactus I could confide in.

*screaming, waving both cacti arms at the sky*

BRAMBBBLYYY!

Duccio

Damn, bro. Did you have to butcher the poor dude’s best friend right in front of him like that?

Buddy “Big Boy” Steele

*ducking the needle-arm swipes of an attacking cactus*

You rather it was him butchered us instead, ya dunderheaded kung-fu tortoise? How about you help me send some of these bastards back to their ugly makers instead of mournin’ ‘em like they’re your next of kin?

Duccio backflipped to avoid a salvo of thorns launched at him like throwing stars by Pricky, slid a halberd from his back and then sliced the arms from a pair of cacti behind him with a series of gaudy twirling motions.

Duccio

Aiyaaaaaah! Time to prune up some plants, bros.

The cacti that Buddy had shot down suddenly floundered in the sand, struggled upright. It stood one head shorter, four spherical segments to its body now instead of five and the pistol-blown midsection gone. A new face, slightly different looking than the one before, glowered at them.

New Cactus

Where the bastard that shot papa?

Duccio

Uh oh, bruh. Looks like you didn’t quite finish the job.

Pricky

*pointing to Buddy*

There, Bristly. That’s the one right there. Kill him. Kill him and honor your father. A-hyuk hyuk hyahhhhhhhh.

Bristly

Him the one killed papa, is him? Gonna make him pay. Gonna git him for papa.


Buddy spun the revolver up, blew the newly formed head apart in another lime-green gore shower that arced into the sand.

Buddy “Big Boy” Steele

The hell you will.

Duccio

*batting away pistol smoke and fending off another pair of attacking cacti*

Uh, can the dudes really be classified as father and son if they shared the same exact body? Unless these cacti dudes reproduce asexually for some inexplicable reason…

Another new cactus head emerges, one segment lower again.

Bristly Jr.

*panting, squinting as he glowers at Duccio and Buddy through his newly formed eyes*

The anger of my slain progenitors resides within me. Where my grandfather and father failed… I shall not. Die by my thorns, poltroons.

*raises arms up and charges them*

Buddy “Big Boy” Steele

*reloading his gun*

The hell are these things? One of them queer, pain in the ass dolls you keep makin’ tinier and tinier the more you open ‘em up?

Duccio

No, they’re not Russian Matryoshka dolls, bro. Pretty sure they have some funky regenerative powers, though. We’re gonna have to figure out a way to get rid of all the segments at once.

Buddy “Big Boy” Steele

So damn many of ‘em.

I still could care less for that damn Lonk kid than I do a donkey’s boiled-looking left nut… but we sure could use him right about now.

Duccio

Look out!

Duccio shoves Buddy away from a salvo of enormous thorns. He ducks down and blocks most of them with his shell, but ends up getting hit by a volley that lodge in the small of his neck and back of his head.

Duccio

Ahhhh shitttt!

Buddy “Big Boy” Steele

I’m gonna shoot ye all to hell if ye harmed a mere scute on my friend’s oversized shell! Ye bastards hear me!?

Buddy fired the revolver off in a frenzy. He sent two cactis facefirst into the sand again but this time the great spew of lime-green blood that erupted from their bodies splashed his face, coated him in a greasy film.

Buddy “Big Boy” Steele

*hopping about, gibbering and clawing at his own face*

Aw shitfire, my eyes! My eyes, dammit! Dammit, they burn to hell!

Buddy thought he’d gone blind. Until he’d rubbed enough of the viscous green stuff from his redrimmed eyes that he could see again. Sort of. Staring and blinking and grasping at the air and seeing nothing but intermittent flashes of:

8-bit-glitch

Meanwhile back at the VGR Bar:

Howitzer Harley

Where the hell are Duccio, Link’s son and that cowboy guy? They’re…

*checking phone*

… now nineteen minutes late for our team darts contest at 2000 hours. One more minute and they get disqualified for a no show. Fair is fair. Over.

Lil’ Sack

Whatever. Give ‘em a couple more minutes.

Howitzer Harley

Negative. Also, did I ever mention I hate playing that stinkin’ Turtle Ninja? Freaky three-fingered mutant hands of his give him a distinct, tactical dart-throwing proficiency. Better grip for precision.

That… and the fact he was trained in the art of ninjitsu by an enormous Zen Buddhist anthropomorphic rat since birth. We need to start screening players for the league a little more selectively. Sucks the fun out of it when the competition’s tainted. Over.

Maurice

I kicked that cowboy guy out of the bar, remember? He threatened to pull a freakin’ gun on me?

Lil’ Sack

Don’t worry, Maurice. I would’ve got him for ya if he tried and pulled something like that. Would’ve given him a left hook to the nuts so hard they’d be tangled around his own legs like a hogtie. I mean just really teed off on his testicles. Mashed ’em into a sort of scrotal paste.

Maurice

I… uh… Jesus Christ.

I mean… I appreciate that, Sack. Uh, here. Take this one on me.

*slides him a filled shotglass*

Haiku

A trio in the desert.

Searching for a proper horse

What wonders await?

Howitzer Harley

*pointing to the darkest portion of the rafters where Haiku crouches in wait*

That guy is hands down one of the weirdest bastards I’ve ever seen…

… and I’d like to sign him up for my dart team. Get me the necessary paperwork. Over.

Back in the Desiccant Desert:

Buddy woke with the broken sunlight boring down on his face. He tried to rub his eyes but found his arms rope-bound to the floor of the crude wooden wagon in which he lay. A cactus on either side clutched the seat rails with their barbed appendages and trundled the wagon towards a break in the dark mountains ahead.

Buddy “Big Boy” Steele

*squirming*

Duccio?! What’d you prickly heathens do with ‘em?


The cactus to his left laughed, pointed to the procession of other cacti in front of the wagon.

Pricky

You mean your turtle friend? A-hyuk hyuk hyahhhhhhhh.



One of them held the capsized, blood-mottled shell of Duccio cradled like a baby in his arms. He laughed as he lobbed the shell like an enormous football to the cactus next to him, who held it up and paraded it around in sick parody of a drum major with a baton.

Buddy “Big Boy” Steele

*wincing*

Oh Lord God. What have ye done?

Pricky

You’ll see soon enough. Kick back. Relax. We’ve got some more walking to do…

To Be Continued…

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