The Great Plot Bunny Caper
2005 Papa Bear Awards - Second Place
Best Challenge - Plot Bunny Challenge
2005 Papa Bear Awards - Third Place
Most Unique Story
This story was written in response to a SmartGroups Plot Bunny challenge.
The incidents depicted in this story are the products of a demented mind. Any similarities to a legitimate Hogan’s Heroes Fan Fiction story, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
The standard disclaimer applies: I make no claims to any of the characters of the Hogan’s Heroes universe.
Part 1 – Is there a writer in the house?
Major Hochstetter pointed at the map he had laid on the top of Klink's desk. "Klink, do you know what this is?" he asked.
"It's a map, Major," Klink replied.
"Very good Klink, there may be hope for you yet. Now what is in the middle of this map?" Hochstetter asked.
Klink peered closely at the map. "It looks like Stalag 13," he said.
"Very good Klink. Now what do you think those little red dots are?" Hochstetter asked.
Schultz looked over from where he was standing. "They look like measles, Major," he said. "They must be German measles."
"Is that it Major?" Klink asked. "Is there a measles epidemic in this area?"
Hochstetter looked from Klink to Schultz and back again. "Why do these writers keep putting me in scenes with these fools," he muttered. "Klink, pay attention. Those red dots are Plot Bunnies."
"Plot Bunnies?" Klink echoed.
"Yes, Plot Bunnies," Hochstetter said. "And do you notice anything else peculiar about the map?"
"There seems to be a lot of them," Klink said.
"You know what they say about rabbits, Herr Kommandant," Schultz said.
"Schultz!! Keep quiet!" Klink yelled.
"Klink! Shut up!!" Hochstetter yelled.
The room was quiet before Hostetter spoke again. "You'll notice that there are more Plot Bunnies around this camp than anywhere else in the Internet. Do you know what that means?"
Klink shook his head.
"That means that there are more writers loose in this area than anywhere else," Hochstetter said.
"But sir, my record is clear. I have not had a single writer escape from my camp," Klink said.
"Yes Klink, so you have told me," Hochstetter replied. "Every chance you get, you tell me. It's as if the writers can't think of anything else for you to say."
"Major, I resent that!" Klink protested.
"Good. You were supposed to," Hochstetter replied.
Just then, Colonel Hogan opened the office door and walked in. "Kommandant," he said. Then seeing Major Hochstetter, he said "Oh Hi Major, glad you could join us."
"Klink, what is this man doing here?" Hochstetter asked.
"Major - it seems to me you are always asking me that question," Klink chided. "Now tell me, can't the writers think of something else for you to say?"
"Bah!" yelled the Major.
"And that's another one you are always saying," Klink said smiling.
"Klink, when I get through with this camp, heads will roll!" Hochstetter growled.
"Hey Major, even I've heard you say that one," Hogan chimed in.
keep quiet," Hochstetter told Hogan. "You, the most dangerous man in
Schultz started, "I believe that your line should read 'The most dangerous
man in all of
"Fools! Traitors!" Hochstetter yelled. "There's a war on and I'm surrounded by fools and traitors!"
Hogan turned to Schultz and said, "You know, I think I've seen this show before. Do you know what his problem is this time?"
Hochstetter continued his rant.
"I think he has a case of German measles," Schultz said.
"No, I think it's a bad case of the Plot Bunnies," Klink corrected. "He was complaining about them when he came in."
"Plot bunnies?" Hogan asked, perplexed. "Are they contagious?"
Klink shrugged. "I don't know Colonel," Klink replied. "I'm not a writer."
Colonel Hogan turned and looked towards the Internet. "Is there a writer in the house?" he asked.
Part 2 – Those are not Jelly Beans!
Carter burst through the barracks door, panting. “Colonel Hogan,” he said breathlessly. “They are clearing out all the prisoners from barracks 15. It looks like Hochstetter is going to be putting something in there.”
Hogan sighed. “Oh great, just what we need,” he said. “It probably has something to do with the Plot Bunnies he was ranting about in chapter 1.”
“Plot Bunnies?” Carter asked quizzically. “What’s a Plot Bunny?”
“Oh come on Carter,” Newkirk said. “You don’t know about the Plot Bunny? How old are you?”
Carter looked indignant. “Well I think that’s a rather personal question Newkirk!” he said, putting his hands on his hips.
“Take it easy Carter,” Newkirk said. “I’ll tell you about the Plot Bunny.”
Carter relaxed. “That’s better,” he said.
“You’ve heard of the Easter Bunny, right?” Newkirk asked. Carter nodded. “Well, the Plot Bunny is the same, only he visits fan fiction writers, like this joker over there,” he said, pointing to the outside of the computer screen.
“Oh him,” Carter said. “I’ve always wondered about him.”
“Me too, but sometimes it’s a her rather than a him,” Newkirk said.
“Leave it to you to notice that Newkirk,” Hogan said, taking a sip of his coffee.
“Thank you sir, I do my best,” Newkirk replied. “Anyway, the Plot Bunny comes in the middle of the night and leaves presents for the writer.”
“You mean like jelly beans?” Carter asked.
“Almost, but I don’t think you want to be eating them,” Newkirk said, laughing.
Hogan choked on his coffee. He tried not to laugh, but was unsuccessful, and coffee went flying in all directions.
Carter looked at the mess that Hogan had made. “I guess that writer sure got you boy!” he said. “Um, I mean sir.”
“Newkirk, quit teasing him,” Hogan said, having recovered amazingly fast from the coughing fit. “You know as well as I do what Plot Bunnies are.”
“Well I don’t know,” Carter said. “Why doesn’t someone tell me?”
“Simmer down Carter, I’ll tell you,” Hogan said. And he told Carter about Plot Bunnies.
The room was silent after he finished. Hogan looked around wondering why. Then he looked at the reader. “What, you don’t expect me to tell YOU do you?” he asked, shaking his head. “These readers are almost as demanding as the writers!”
“But Colonel, what about Hochstetter,” Kinch asked.
“Oh yes, thank you Kinch for getting us back to the point of this chapter,” Hogan said. “We have to find out what’s going on there. And how do we find out?”
“Schultz!” came the chorus of everyone in the room.
At that moment, Schultz walked into the barracks. “Schultz, what a coincidence. We were just talking about you,” Hogan said.
“Colonel Hogan, you know as well as I do that it was no coincidence,” Schultz said, gesturing towards the writer.
LeBeau walked up to Schultz and handed him a piece of paper. Schultz opened up the paper and read the words “Apfel Strudel” from it. “What is this?” he asked.
“Well Schultz, we always bribe you with strudel to get information from you, but the props department on this story isn’t very good,” Hogan said. “So we don’t have any strudel. This is the best we can do today.”
“Ah, I see, I’m on a diet in this story,” Schultz said. “And since I have also been told that this chapter is running a little long Colonel, let’s bypass the normal give and take,” he said, pulling a piece of paper from his pocket.
“What’s that?” Hogan asked.
“It is the information that you would eventually get from me,” Schultz replied. “I’m going to read it to you so that you can hurry up and talk about your devious plan to foil Major Hochstetter’s not-so-devious plan, as usual.”
“Foil? Devious?” echoed Newkirk. “Schultz, you never use words like that.”
“I know Newkirk,” Schultz said. “It’s this writer again. I think he got a thesaurus or something. But please don’t distract me. I have to read this information.”
Schultz read from the paper. “Major Hochstetter, tired of the heavy Plot Bunny activity around Stalag 13, has come up with a plan. He has had several writers from the third Harry Potter movie hard at work to come up with a modified Marauders’ Map that will show him the location of any Plot Bunny in this area. Once finished, the map will can be used to finally outsmart Colonel Hogan and maybe even steal a scene from him without having to resort to acting like Yosemite Sam.”
“Who’s Yosemite Sam, Schultz?” Carter asked.
“He’s a cartoon character from Warner Bothers that won’t be introduced until 1945,” Schultz replied.
“But we haven’t yet reached 1945 in our timeline,” Hogan said.
“I know Colonel,” Schultz replied. “But the writer included it because, well, he’s a writer and not necessarily concerned with historical accuracy.”
“Oh brother, what’s next?” Hogan said rolling his eyes.
“Maybe that,” Schultz said, pointing to Kinch and LeBeau. Hogan turned to look.
“Oh no,” he said. “Kinch, take those headphones out of your ears and put away that Walkman. LeBeau, I told you, no more GameBoy for you!” Both men complied, but didn’t look to happy about it.
“But Colonel, the writer said we could play with them,” LeBeau said. “We never get to have any fun.”
“Colonel, I do think I have to go,” Schultz said. “This chapter is over. You’ll have to do your planning in the next chapter.”
Part 3 – Did I just hear music?
Colonel Hogan sat at the table in the barracks, across from Newkirk and Carter. He looked at his watch. “I hope they get back soon,” he said. “This crazy writer has already started.”
Just then, the door opened and Kinch, Baker and LeBeau walked in. “Sorry we’re later Colonel,” Kinch said. “There was a line in the Kantine.”
“I know Kinch,” Hogan replied. “It was a short break.”
“I sure hope the Fan Fiction Character Union doesn’t hear about this,” Baker said.
“What do we care, Baker,” LeBeau said and then gestured towards the computer screen. “He’s the one that will get into trouble.”
“Don’t worry about that, guys,” Hogan said. “We’ve got to start planning what we can do about Hochstetter and his plan. If he is able to complete that map of his and track all our Allied Plot Bunnies to their source, he’ll be able to wipe out the entire Allied Fan Fiction Writer Corps.”
“But if they are all like the joker we are working with now, wouldn’t we be better off?” Newkirk asked.
“Hey, I was going to ask that!” Carter exclaimed.
“Don’t blame me Carter, it was him,” Newkirk said, glaring at the figure behind the computer screen.
“Alright, hold it down men,” Hogan said, trying to stop the bickering before the whole chapter wasted away. “But not all writers are as loopy as this one, Carter.”
“Colonel, I was the one that asked the question, not Carter,” Newkirk said.
“But I was going to,” Carter retorted.
“It doesn’t matter!” Hogan said loudly. “If Hochstetter is able to wipe out the Allied Fan Fiction Writer Corps, then our fandom will be doomed.”
A thundering noise of dramatic music shook the barracks. The men looked around.
“What in the bloody ‘ell was that?” LeBeau asked.
Newkirk sighed. “Now LeBeau is taking my lines,” he said. “Colonel, isn’t there something we can do about this?”
“Later Newkirk, I’m trying to figure out what that was,” Hogan replied. “It happened right after I said our fandom would be doomed.”
The thundering noise appeared again. A flash of realization struck Hogan and he buried his face in his hands muttering, “Oh no, not that.”
“What Colonel?” Kinch asked.
“They’ve got sound effects now,” Hogan replied. A collective groan escaped from the men.
“Our fandom will be doomed,” Carter said excitedly.
The dramatic music rumbled. “Carter! Cut it out!” Hogan exclaimed.
“Sorry Colonel, I just thought it was so neat,” Carter replied.
“You would,” Newkirk muttered.
The barracks door opened and Schultz rushed into the room. “Colonel Hogan, please!” the rotund German sergeant pleaded. “The Kommandant will be mad to hear all of this noise at this time of night.”
“Sorry Schultz, it’s not our fault. They’ve added sound effects to this chapter,” Hogan responded. “And did you notice that you’ve been described as ‘rotund’ this time?”
The fleshy sergeant snorted. “How can I be described as rotund? I didn’t even get a real apfel strudel in the last chapter,” he replied. “I’m wasting away here.”
The men laughed. “We can see that Schultz,” Newkirk joked, poking the corpulent guard. “Aw blimey, this guy’s got his thesaurus again. Rotund, Fleshy, Corpulent. I can’t take much more of this!”
Colonel Hogan sighed and looked at the reader. “Are you as tired of this as I am?” Then rising from the table, he ushered Schultz towards the door. “Sorry Schultz, we’ll try to keep it down. But we have to make our plans now.”
“You haven’t done that yet?” a surprised Schultz asked.
“With the quality of writing in this story, are you surprised?” Hogan retorted.
Schultz shook his head. “No, I guess not,” he said. “But you better hurry up, or this chapter will be doomed!”
The thundering noise from the sound effects shook the barracks again. “Don’t say that word!” Hogan admonished. “I think this chapter has gone on forever already.”
“Hey Colonel, what a great use of a simile,” Carter said.
“No Carter, that was irony,” LeBeau said.
“No, I think that was a metaphor,” Kinch corrected.
“Actually, it was a hyperbole,” Hogan said. “But that doesn’t matter now,” he said through clenched teeth and then turned towards the writer. “Would you please stop this and get to our plan before we are all doomed!” As soon as he said it, he regretted it.
The thundering noise shook the barracks.
why don’t we radio
“Thanks again Kinch,” Hogan said. “You really know how to get the story back on track.”
should we radio
Hogan sighed. “I’m afraid it will have to wait. We’ve run out of time for this chapter.”
“Maybe we will be doomed after all,” Carter said.
The dramatic music shook the rafters again. Schultz opened the door and yelled “Colonel Hogan, Please!”
“Hey Schultz, how come you just opened the door again when you never left the last time?” Newkirk asked.
“Ach du liebe,” exclaimed Schultz. “First historical inaccuracy and now we can’t even have plot continuity.”
“Makes you glad to be in this story, doesn’t it?” Hogan asked.
“General Burkhalter is the lucky one,” Schultz said. “He doesn’t appear in this story at all.”
The barracks door opened and General Albert Burkhalter walked into the barracks clad in pajamas and a pair of bunny slippers. “Schultz you dummkopf!” he screamed. “They brought me in for a cameo appearance just because you mentioned my name!”
Part 4 – My kingdom for a plan!
“Our operation will be doomed,” Carter said expectantly. He looked up at the rafters in the barracks. Nothing happened.
“Carter, what are you doing?” Newkirk asked.
“I just wanted to hear the sound effects again,” Carter replied. “It looks like we don’t get any for this chapter.”
“Thank heavens,” Hogan said.
“I wonder what will happen in this chapter,” LeBeau mused.
“Hey LeBeau, I didn’t know you knew how to muse.” Carter said. “When did you learn to do that?”
“What are you talking about Carter?” LeBeau asked.
“You mused. See, look there,” Carter said, pointing three lines back.
Newkirk looked to where Carter was pointing. “Well I’ll be. Carter’s right, you did muse LeBeau,” Newkirk exclaimed.
“And I didn’t even realize it,” LeBeau said with a smile. “I must be getting good at this.”
“Don’t let it go to your head,” Hogan said. “We still have to come up with a plan. We’re two chapters late.”
Just then the door opened and Kommandant Klink walked in. Hogan looked surprised. “Hi there, Kommandant. What are you doing here?” he asked.
“I just wanted to make an appearance,” Klink replied. “I haven’t been used since the first chapter and I was getting bored waiting around.”
“Oh,” Hogan said. “Diiiiiiiis-misssssssed Kommandant!”
“Hogan, that’s my line,” Klink said.
“There’s been a lot of that going on around here lately,” Kinch said.
“Must be this wonderful writer we have,” Klink said. “You know, I hear that he’s working on a story featuring Vladimir Minsk.”
“I know,” Klink replied. “It really makes a lot of sense, doesn’t it?”
“Actually, it does really,” Hogan said. “After all, this same author has thrown historical accuracy out the window in chapter two and messed up the plot continuity in chapter 3. Why not mess with the character continuity in this chapter.”
Klink waved his hand dismissively. “No matter. I have faith in the readers. They’ll keep him in line.” Klink opened the door. “Well, you’d better get back to your planning. Do you realize that you are two chapters late with this plan?”
Hogan sighed. “Yes, I know.”
After Klink left, Hogan looked around at the men. “Alright, does anyone have any bright ideas?”
Newkirk chimed up. “How about we steal the map from the barracks, and when Klink realizes it is missing and searches us, we can drop it in the well in the compound and send Carter down to retrieve it later.”
“How about we don’t,” Carter said.
“No, we can’t do that again,” Hogan said. “The well was only there for one episode.”
“Oh, you mean like the brick steps leading to Klink’s office?” Baker said.
“Yes, just like those steps,” Hogan said. “Any other ideas?”
just because you mused once doesn’t mean you have to muse all the time!” Hogan
said. “Besides, the map is here in camp, not in
Just then the door to the barracks opened, and a man walked into the room.
“Colonel Feldkamp?” Hogan asked.
“No, I’m Major Hochstetter,” Hochstetter said.
“But you are dressed like Colonel Feldkamp,” Hogan replied.
Hochstetter looked down at his clothes. “Those fools in wardrobe gave me the wrong uniform!” he said. “Bah!” He turned and stormed out of the barracks, slamming the door behind him.
After Hochstetter left, Kinch piped up. “Colonel, what if we could convince Hochstetter that the war was over, like we did before when he had those underground agents prisoner.”
“I don’t remember that one Kinch,” Carter said.
“Of course not Carter, you weren’t in that episode,” Kinch replied.
“That’s right, and you never did tell us where you were,” Newkirk said. “You left us a man short with no notice. We had to ask Father Mulcahy from M*A*S*H to fill in for you.”
“As I told you then, it’s none of your business Newkirk,” Carter said.
“Newkirk, give it a rest,” Hogan said. “He told me, and I approved his absence. Besides, if he doesn’t want to tell you, he doesn’t have to tell you.” Hogan turned to Carter, “And how was Mady when you saw her Carter?” he asked.
Carter beamed. “She was fine Colonel,” he said. “She said to tell you hello.” Carter paused. “Hey no fair Colonel! You promised you wouldn’t tell.”
Hogan smiled. “Don’t blame me, blame the writer!”
As Carter silently fumed, the door to the barracks opened again.
“Ah, Major Hochstetter, what are you doing here?” Hogan asked. “You’re not supposed to be here yet.”
Hochstetter took a booklet of paper from inside of his coat. “But it says here in the script that I was to come in sometime in the middle of chapter 4.”
Hogan sighed. “Yes, I know. But you see we’ve been having some trouble with the writer for this story and we’re running behind. We still haven’t come up with our plan yet.”
“You haven’t?” Hochstetter said. “But that was supposed to be in chapter 2!”
“I know, but we keep getting sidetracked,” Hogan said.
“Hogan, I don’t want to tell you how to run your operation,” Hochstetter said. “But if you don’t hurry up and make your plan, these Plot Bunnies are going to get out of control.”
Hogan sighed again. He was tired of sighing, but that darned writer kept making him do it. “I know Major, we’re working on it.”
Major Hochstetter was mumbling to himself as he walked out the door.
Hogan, I will radio
“Kinch, do you always have to talk that way when you are getting the story back on track?” Hogan asked. “I appreciate that you do manage to get us back to the point of the story, but it sounds like you are reading a script or something.”
Kinch smiled and showed Colonel Hogan the piece of paper in his hand. “I am reading a script Colonel.”
Hogan said. “Then Kinch, why don’t you go and radio
that’s not fair Colonel,” Baker said. “It’s my turn to radio
Hogan sighed. He was glad that this chapter was almost over. If he had to sigh one more time, he was going to scream.
spoke up. “No problem Baker, you can radio
“Our operation will be doomed,” Carter said, looking at the rafters.
“Carter!” Hogan yelled.
“Well, it was worth a shot,” Carter said sheepishly.
Hogan sighed. Moments later, the silence of the room was shattered by a loud scream.
Part 5 – Mary Sue, Where are you?
in the radio room with Kinch, Baker and Carter. Newkirk and LeBeau were getting
ready to go and pick up the specialist that
Both men appeared at the door, and Hogan was about ready to ask if they were all set to go when two other men appeared behind them. One man was tall and lean, with brown hair and the other had white hair and was a little shorter, though not as short as LeBeau, and almost stocky. Both men seemed to have ears that looked too big for their heads.
LeBeau looked quickly at the computer screen. “Hey, watch it! No short jokes in this story!”
Hogan waved him off. “Ignore him. He’s caused enough trouble. You two sure were quick,” Hogan said. “I didn’t even know you had gone.”
“We haven’t,” Newkirk said.
“What?” Hogan asked. “Then who are these guys?”
man spoke, “My name is Jack, and this is Peter,” he said, indicating his
friend. “We were sent by
“But if they didn’t go out to get you, how did you get here?” Hogan asked. “How did you find the place?”
“Oh it was pretty easy,” Jack said. “We’re pretty good at finding tunnels underground.”
“But we usually go and pick up the people dropped from the planes,” Hogan said.
“I guess the writer was too lazy to write that scene and decided that it was easier for us to just show up,” Peter said. “You know how these writers are.”
ever,” Hogan replied. “So
Peter looked at Jack. “No Colonel,” he said. “We’re from the Fan Fiction Writers Rogue Plot Device Disposal Squad.”
“The what?” Hogan asked.
“Colonel, please don’t ask us to repeat that,” Jack said. “We’ve been sent here to take care of the map that your Major Hochstetter is creating. You see, having a plot device such as that in your stories can lead to the proliferation of fiction that deviates wildly from your accepted fandom universe.”
“Like this one,” Hogan said dryly.
“I’m afraid this story is beyond hope, even if we are successful in removing the rogue plot device,” Peter said.
“Ain’t that the truth!” Kinch exclaimed.
“But you didn’t come to help us with our Plot Bunny problem?” Hogan asked again.
“No, but …” Jack started to say. As he spoke, a white blur flashed down the tunnel behind him. The flash returned, scooted through between the men, and stopped in front of Colonel Hogan, panting. “But he will help you Colonel.”
Colonel Hogan looked down in disbelief. Sitting in front of him was a black and white spotted Dalmatian. It sat, panting and looking up at the Colonel.
“Colonel Hogan, it’s a dog!” Carter exclaimed.
“Really Carter? I hadn’t noticed,” Hogan said.
shook his head. “
Hogan’s jaw dropped. “You’ve got to be kidding me,” he said. Both Jack and Peter shook there heads. Atlas nudged at Colonel Hogan’s hand, trying to get him to pet him. Hogan looked at the animal, and then at his men. “You know what this means, don’t you?” he asked.
“It means that this story has really gone to the dogs,” Kinch said.
Hogan looked at him. “There is that. But is also means that we are now in the middle of a Mary Sue story. It’s a twisted one, but it’s a Mary Sue nonetheless.”
A collective groan rose from the group of regulars, except for Carter. He had a quizzical expression on his face. “I don’t get it sir,” he said. “They said his name is Atlas, not Mary Sue.”
Newkirk leaned forward and put his hand on Carter’s shoulder. “I’ll explain it later Carter,” he said.
Hogan was rubbing his temples. “So this dog will help us with our Plot Bunnies?” he asked.
Jack nodded. “Plot Bunnies, Plot Kitties, Plot Squirrels, Plot Skunks. You name it,” he said.
“He ought to do well in this story then,” Newkirk said. “If there ever was a Plot Skunk, this would be it!”
“I was thinking more of Plot Roadkill,” Kinch said. “I don’t think it’s even reached the high level of Plot Skunk yet.”
Atlas had begun sniffing around the floor of the radio room. Hogan watched him, still rubbing his temples.
did you guys get here from
“We flew, of course,” Jack said. “It’s kind of far to walk, so we parachuted in.”
“But what about the dog? Did he jump from the plane too?” Carter asked.
“Well, actually, we pushed him out,” Peter said.
“You pushed him out of the plane? You mean he had a parachute on? Carter asked.
The rest of the group was sitting around looking bored. All of them were thinking that if the writer wasn’t going to use them anymore in this chapter, they could leave.
Peter looked at Carter and said, “If you were going to jump from …”
“Or be pushed from,” Jack interrupted.
“Or be pushed form a plane, wouldn’t you have a parachute on?” Peter asked.
“Of course,” Carter said. “I’m not dumb!”
“Well, you’re at least as smart as the dog then,” Peter said dryly.
At that moment, Atlas rushed from the room and ran down one of the tunnels. “What’s he doing?” Hogan asked.
“My guess is that he caught scent of one of your Plot Bunnies,” Jack responded.
“Most likely he’s just trying to get out of this story.” Baker said.
“Hey Baker, you finally got a line in this chapter!” Kinch said, slapping his friends shoulder.
Part 6 – The merciful end
Vladimir and Marya were sitting at the table in the barracks when Colonel Hogan entered. He stopped when he saw them. “What are you two doing in this story?” he asked.
“We’re just taking a break from the other story, Hogan darling,” Marya said. She motioned at the figure sitting behind the computer screen. “This writer here abandoned us for all of this Plot Bunny mania.”
“As far as I’m concerned, you can have him back,” Hogan said.
Colonel, you are in that story too,”
“He didn’t leave me in a ravine or anything, did he?” Hogan asked.
“No, I think that was one of the other writers,” Marya said. “Would you like me to come and keep you company in that ravine?” she asked suggestively.
“So you are here just to pass the time until your story picks up again?” Hogan asked, ignoring the question.
“So you are here for … advertising?” Hogan asked. “I don’t believe it!”
“I don’t see why not. You’ve seen what he’s done with the first 5 chapters,” Marya said.
Hogan sighed. “I guess you are right.”
“Well, we should be getting back. Good luck with the rest
of this story,”
“Gee thanks,” Hogan replied.
After Vladimir and Marya left, the door to the barracks opened and Jack and Peter walked in.
“We’re all set Colonel,” Jack said. “We’ve got the map from Hochstetter.”
“What? But we didn’t stage a diversion so you could sneak in to the building to steal it. We didn’t even get to hatch a cockeyed plan to make Major Hochstetter look like a fool in the process,” Hogan said.
Jack shook his head. “No need Colonel. You see, you wasted so much time in the previous chapters, so you couldn’t accomplish it in this chapter. It is the last chapter of this story.”
“Are you sure?” Hogan asked warily.
Jack nodded. “It’s a Fan Fiction Writer Guild rule. Any story written as a challenge that features Plot Bunnies, contains historical inaccuracies, plot incongruities, Mary Sue elements, or such special elements as sound effects or advertising cannot exceed 6 chapters,” he said. “Punishment for breaking the rule is to have to read your own fiction exclusively for a period not to exceed 6 months.”
Hogan nodded. “I see, that would be a stiff punishment for this writer,” he said. “I guess this will be the last chapter after all.”
At that moment, Atlas rushed into the room. “How did he open the door?” Hogan asked.
Jack and Peter shrugged. “Another plot incongruity,” Jack said pointing at the open door.
Atlas trotted up to Hogan and dropped a bunch of paper into his lap. Hogan patted the dog on the head, looking at the wet pieces of paper sitting there. Atlas wagged his tail and then headed out the door again.
“And I wonder what these are,” Hogan mused.
“Oh great,” he said. “Now this joker has me musing. This is getting to be too much.”
Jack and Peter headed towards the tunnel entrance. “Well we should be going,” Peter said. “We’ll leave you to those Plot Bunnies.”
“You mean these are the dreaded Plot Bunnies that have been causing all of this trouble?” he asked.
“At least some of them,” Jack said. “Treat them carefully Colonel, or else you might get stuck in this story forever. Good luck!”
Both men climbed down into the tunnel. Hogan didn’t even
ask how they would get back to
The barracks door opened again, which surprised Hogan. It was open when the dog ran through, and he didn’t remember it being shut. Major Hochstetter poked his head into the doorway and looked around. “Are you ready now Colonel?” he asked. Hogan nodded and the door shut gently.
Almost immediately the door slammed open and Hochstetter stormed into the room. “Alright Hogan, where is it?” he asked.
“Where is what Major?” Hogan replied. “There have been so many “its” in this story that I can’t keep track of them all.”
“The map, it was stolen and I know you had something to do with it!” Hochstetter growled.
“What map Major? I don’t remember seeing any map.” Hogan said.
Hochstetter pulled a booklet out of his uniform coat and started flipping pages. “I know it’s in here,” he grumbled as he turned the pages. He found the one he was looking for and stopped. ‘There,” he said, pointing to the page. “It says here in this script that you were responsible for taking the map.”
“I’m sorry Major, but we haven’t been following that script since chapter 1,” Hogan said. “I’m afraid I don’t have whatever map you are talking about.”
“You don’t?” Hochstetter asked. “
“Are you sure it’s missing Major?” Hogan asked. “If you’ve been following that script, you might have missed something. Maybe you should go back and look again.”
“Yes, maybe you are right,” Hochstetter mused.
“Hey – enough of this musing! There has been enough of that in this story already!” Hogan said forcefully to the writer. “And no more sighs either. I’m getting sick of it!”
Hochstetter looked at Hogan. “What are you yelling at Colonel?” he asked. “You look like I do in just about every episode I am in.”
Hogan almost-but-not-quite sighed. “It’s gotten that bad around here,” he said dejectedly.
Hochstetter looked at Hogan. “I’d better go. I have this feeling that if I stay in this chapter too long, I’ll be saying things like ‘bah’ and yelling and screaming.” He walked towards the door, looking around for this person that Hogan was talking to.
As he was leaving, the rest of the cast burst through the door. Hogan was surprised to see Klink and Schultz with his men.
“Alright, where is he,” Newkirk shouted. “Get him out here now.”
“Who are you talking about?” Hogan asked.
“This writer that has been making life miserable for us,” Kinch said. “Do you realize that none of us were in this last chapter?”
“You’re here now,” Hogan said.
“This doesn’t count,” Newkirk said. “We came to demand better treatment from this writer.”
Hogan looked at Klink. “And why are you here Kommandant?” he asked.
“I’m with them,” he said. “I haven’t been used since chapter 1. I had to crash chapter 4 just to make another appearance. Schultz here hasn’t been used since chapter 3, but he was too busy eating to crash any other chapters. It seems that your writer person neglected to give him anything to eat in this story.”
“Hey, he’s not MY writer!” Hogan said defensively. “If it were up to me, I’d say we lock this person in the cooler and throw away the key!”
Just then, the barracks door opened and both Helga and Hilda walked into the room. They both walked over to Hogan.
“And what are you two doing here?” he asked them.
“We’re here for you Colonel,” Helga said.
Hilda nodded. “That’s right. You haven’t kissed any women in this story, and we were written in at the last minute so that we could correct this plot discrepancy.”
Hogan smiled. “Then again gentlemen, maybe this writer isn’t all that bad after all!”
“I still think General Burkhalter is the lucky one,” Schultz muttered.
Just then, the barracks door opened again, and General Albert Burkhalter walked in. He was dripping wet and had a towel wrapped around his waist. In his hand he carried a bath brush. He walked over to Schultz and hit the sergeant on the helmet with the bath brush and walked out of the barracks.
Carter rushed into the barracks. "Colonel Hogan," he said breathlessly.
"Carter, why are you always rushing into the barracks? Can't you enter normally in any of these scenes?" Hogan asked him.
"Sorry sir," Carter answered. "It's not my fault. That fool of a writer is at it again."
Hogan looked over at the computer screen. "Oh no," he muttered. "I have a feeling that I'm going to be sighing a lot again."
"Colonel," Carter said again. "I think you need to see what's outside."
"What is it?" Hogan asked warily.
"There's no need to be wary Colonel," Carter responded. "It's a good thing."
Hogan followed Carter out of the barracks thinking that HE should have been the one to leave the barracks first. After all, he is the Colonel in this story. "Writers," he muttered to himself. He stopped, thought of something and then shook his head. "No, it can't be that," he muttered again. He stopped again. "Oh no, I'm muttering in this one!" he said. "I think I would rather be sighing."
He followed Carter to the side of the barracks, where there was a crowd of writers gathered around something. "Make room," Carter said. "The Colonel's here."
The crowd of men shifted to let Hogan through. When he got to the front, he looked at the ground. "Any idea what this is?" he asked.
Beside him, Kinch said "I think it's the Plot Bunny sir."
"What happened?" Hogan asked.
"I think it's been beat to death," Kinch replied.
"Ain't that the truth!" Newkirk responded.
"Newkirk, you used that same line earlier in the Plot Bunny Caper story," Carter noticed.
"Aw blimey, is HE back again?" Newkirk asked.
"Bloody 'ell," Newkirk muttered.
"I see he has you muttering today too, Newkirk," Hogan said looking at the Plot Bunny on the ground at his feet.
At that moment, the white blur that had been running around flew by again.
Hogan looked up and saw Atlas, the writers pet, running around camp, chasing the elusive blue Plot Bunny.
LeBeau came around the barracks. "Colonel Hogan, there's something here that you have to see," he said.
"What, another one?" he muttered. He started off following LeBeau to another crown of men. When he got to the front of the crowd, he looked down. It wasn't a pretty sight.
"Who's this?" he asked.
"That joker of a writer that put us through that absurd Plot Bunny Caper,"
"What happened?" he asked.
"It was the musician sir," LeBeau explained. "She started screaming something about someone named Mary Sue and beating him up with an oboe."
Hogan looked around. "Where did she run off to?" he asked. LeBeau shrugged.
Colonel Hogan smiled as if a great weight was lifted from his shoulders.
"Well, let's find her," he said. "I think she deserves a promotion for this!"
As he started to walk away, he looked back towards the bludgeoned writer. LeBeau and the other little prisoners had all joined hands and were walking in a circle around the remains, singing “Ding Dong, the writer’s dead, the wicked writer’s dead!”
Epilogue 2 – It ain’t over until …
Colonel Hogan stood still, staring straight ahead. He didn’t move when the men entered the barracks.
“Hey, look at the Colonel,” Newkirk said. “What’s he up to?”
“HE’S back again,” Kinch said, motioning towards the computer screen. A collective groan rose from the men. “And the Colonel is not happy about it.”
“I am on strike for this story,” Hogan said, without moving. “The union said that these type of stories could only be 6 chapters long. I went along with the Epilogue because I thought we finally got rid of that guy. But now this is too much.”
“So you are just going to stand there?” LeBeau asked.
Hogan was silent.
“So what are we going to do in this story?” LeBeau asked. “Without the Colonel, we won’t be able to plan our missions!”
Suddenly, a man dressed in a safari outfit appeared in the middle of the barracks.
“Any time, night or day, you can call on Dr. Bombay,” the man said. Hogan’s men stared at him.
“Who are you?” Newkirk asked.
“He’s a character from another genre,” Hogan said without moving. “This writer likes to do that because he hasn’t the imagination to think up any original characters.”
The man looked around the barracks. “Oops,” he said. “I think I’ve popped onto the wrong set. Don’t worry lads, I’ll be right back.” Suddenly the man disappeared.
“I don’t get it,” Carter said.
“Now there’s a first,” Newkirk said sarcastically.
“Hey, there’s no need to be sarcastic!” Carter exclaimed. “I have a fan club, you know.” Newkirk rolled his eyes. “Anyway, what I don’t get is that in the Epilogue, this ditzy writer was bludgeoned to death by that musician prisoner. So how’s he back writing?”
“It’s simple Carter,” Kinch explained. “This part was written before the Epilogue.”
“But if that is the case, then how come we are mentioning things that happened in the Epilogue?” Carter asked again.
Kinch was silent, looking at the writer off in the shadows. After a while he said, “Well, are you going to have me explain it to him?”
At that moment, the door to Hogan’s office opened and Colonel Rodney Crittendon entered the room.
“I guess this means you aren’t,” Kinch muttered.
“Wot ho, lads!” Crittendon said. “Sorry about the mix up earlier. I got the call up suddenly and got mixed up on what genre I was supposed to be used in a totally inane guest appearance role today.”
“And just what are you doing here today?” Baker asked.
“Why, I’m here because of him,” Crittendon answered, pointing his thumb at the motionless Colonel Hogan. “Jolly bad for morale to go without a leader for very long.”
“This isn’t exactly helping my morale,” Newkirk said. “I think I’d rather host a game show.”
Carter opened his mouth to ask what a game show was, but before he could speak, the barracks door opened and in walked the Kommandant, followed by Schultz. The pair walked up to Colonel Hogan.
“Hogan?” Klink asked, getting no reply. Klink looked around the room. “What’s wrong with him?” he asked the men.
“He’s on strike sir,” Kinch answered. “We’re in another one of those wonderfully funny farces that we’ve been having to perform in lately.”
Everyone looked at Kinch in astonishment. He looked back and shrugged. “Don’t blame me, I didn’t write the dialog.” Everyone turned to glare at the writer for a second.
More seconds passed and the men continued to glare. After a few minutes, Klink said, “I hope he continues writing soon, I’m getting tired of glaring.” Heads nodded in agreement.
Then Klink looked at Hogan. “He’s got the right idea,” he said.
Schultz spoke up. “I wonder if Gener …” he started to say.
Hogan suddenly reached over and put his hand over the sergeants mouth. “No Schultz, don’t say that name. You remember what happened last time.” Schultz nodded and Hogan removed his hand.
“Thank you Colonel,” Schultz said. Hogan didn’t reply, having gone back to his motionless stare. “I wonder if we’ll see Major Hochstetter?” Schultz asked.
Suddenly, a disembodied voice echoed through the barracks. “BAH!!!”
“Blimey, what in blazes was that?” asked a surprised Crittendon.
Klink looked over, seeing Crittendon for the first time. “Oh, you’re here,” he said. “You must have come for the buffet lunch we having in the Kantine.” Crittendon nodded. “I don’t know what that noise was. It happened right after Schultz asked about Major Hochstetter.”
The disembodied voice was back, shaking the anemic looking barracks walls. “WHAT IS THIS MAN DOING HERE???”
Klink looked over at the writer. “I resent that statement,” he said. “Anemic looking walls indeed. Let’s see what you could do with the budget I am given to run this camp!”
“Kommandant, just ignore him,” Kinch said. “It does no good to try to banter with him. He’ll just change the subject.”
Carter was looking around, an amused glint in his eye. He opened his mouth to say something and Hogan suddenly yelled, “Carter, don’t you DARE say that man’s name!” Carter shut his mouth and looked around sheepishly.
a woman dressed in a brightly colored flowing gown appeared in the middle of
the barracks. “
The men stared. Carter pointed and said “Who, or what, is THAT?”
The woman glared at Carter. “Watch yourself, young man,” she said. “Or I shall have to turn you into a toad.”
“It might be better if you turned him into a bullfrog,” Newkirk jested. “After all, he is from Bullfrog North Dakota.” He smiled his cute smile and resisted a sudden urge to kiss the strange woman and yell, “The survey says!”
“And you,” she said, looking at Newkirk. “I might just have to turn you into the police.”
“Endora, what are you doing in this genre?” Crittendon asked.
“You are needed to guest star in our genre,” she said. “I think it has something to do with little blue creatures with long ears hopping around. I believe they called them Plot Bunnies.” Having said that, she waved her arms and disappeared in a puff of smoke.
Crittendon looked around. “Well chaps, gotta go,” he said. “Duty calls. Chin up fellows. This story can’t go on forever.” At that, he completely vanished.
“Blimey,” Newkirk exclaimed. “I knew that Crittendon was strange, but this is too much!”
“Do you think he was right about this story?” Klink asked.
“It’s hard to tell,” Kinch replied. “It already seems to have gone on for too long.”
“I wonder when it will end,” Schultz wondered. He then stopped and wondered why he had wondered twice in that last sentence. Then he thought that it would be a wonder if he ever survived this story.
“I think I’ll go back to my office and make a phone call,” Klink said. “General Burkhalter might know.”
Hogan slapped his forehead and muttered, “Oh no.”
The barracks door opened and in walked General Burkhalter. He was dressed in a funny outfit and had a blonde wig on his head. He walked into the room, struck a pose and opened his mouth. A high soprano filled the room as the General began singing.
The men were flabbergasted.
“What is that?” Carter asked.
“It sounds like an aria from La Scala,” Kinch replied.
Baker shook his head. “No, it sounds more like Aida,” he said.
“No, it’s La Boheme,” Klink said.
“What I would like to know,” Carter began, “is how he can sing so high.”
Hogan spoke from where he was standing. “It’s best not to think about that Carter,” he said.
Carter started to ask why, but was cut off by Kinch. “I wonder when he will stop?” he asked.
Just then, the General stopped singing, curtsied to the group, and sauntered out of the barracks.
“Since when did General Burkhalter ever saunter?” Schultz asked.
“I guess since he started wearing blonde wigs and singing arias from famous operas,” Newkirk replied.
Kinch started smiling. “You know what this means, don’t you?” he asked. Everyone shook their heads. “It means the story is over!”
“How do you figure?” Le Beau asked.
“You know the old saying,” Kinch replied. “It ain’t over until …” He was cut off by Hogan.
“Until the fat General sings,” Hogan said.
“Well, Burkhalter definitely qualifies,” Klink said.
Everyone stood around looking at one another. They glanced at the writer and cleared their throats noisily.
“It sure takes a long time to end a story,” Schultz said. There was more silence as everyone stood around looking at one another.
Suddenly Carter said, “Hey Colonel, did you notice that I didn’t say Hochstetter?”
The disembodied voice thundered through the barracks. “HEADS WILL ROLL!!!!”
Hogan sighed. “Carter!!”
Text and original characters copyright 2004 by Jeff Evans
This copyright covers only original material and characters, and in no way intends to infringe upon the privileges of the holders of the copyrights, trademarks, or other legal rights, for the Hogan's Heroes universe.