I'm busy writing a crossover between two iconic '80s shows -- "Punky Brewster" and "ThunderCats." It's set during the cartoon version of "Punky" and season one of the classic "T'Cats" cartoon and disregards Lion-O's anointment trials. Here's chapter one right now, though it's from Punky's side of things: Chicago -- the most populous city in the state of Illinois and in the American Midwest. It is in this city that we begin the tale of a very special little girl with short brown hair, sleeping soundly in her carriage-style bed in her prominently colorful room. Her name: Penelope "Punky" Brewster. Right by her side is her dog Brandon, a Golden Retriever whose nickname is "The Wonder Dog," sleeping within a customized doghouse. It was a Tuesday morning, and soon the sun would arise to greet the day. Punky had been through a lot over the years; since her parents were never there for her (her father left their family and her mother abandoned her at a shopping center), she had built a wall around herself so she would never again get hurt. It was a good thing that she had only Brandon to count on, for the bond between them had gotten strong. Throughout their hardships, it remained strong. Then, suddenly, they happened upon a vacant building they now resided in, which was managed by elderly photographer Henry Warnimont, who also had out a downtown photography studio. When he first encountered Punky, their relationship was rocky, mostly because Henry's wife's death had made him cynical and bitter. But, after he heard Punky's story, their relationship started to grow. Henry fostering a child had been met with skepticism from social workers who eventually sided with him, and Punky was temporarily placed into Fenster Hall, a place where orphaned kids like herself could be taken care of. She made friends there, but no matter how hard she tried, Punky just couldn't get Henry out of her head; it was like she and him had already become one. Soon afterwards, Henry had officially adopted Punky through court. Punky couldn't be any happier. The two were more alike than they realized, as their hearts needed healing from all the pain and suffering they'd endured in their lives. Now Punky, Henry, and Brandon behaved like a real family, despite getting on each other's nerves from time to time. Another person who entered Punky's life was Glomer, a Glomley who came from Chaundoon, a city at the edge of the rainbow. Punky was riding her bicycle one day with Brandon tagging along, and they went to see a rainbow that, unbeknownst to them, also was a portal to Chaundoon. They then decided to head back home, but Glomer, with his peaked curiosity, ventured into the human world. By the time he caught up with Punky and Brandon, he startled the former, causing her to ruin her bike. He at first was uncomfortable around her, but seeing Punky offering friendship, he repaired her bike with his magic. It was the start of a beautiful friendship. Eventually Punky's other friends -- Cherie Benson (whom Punky became fast friends with), rich girl Margaux Kramer, and geeky Allen Anderson -- caught wind of Glomer's existence and joined Punky in keeping Glomer's existence a secret from everyone, including Henry. Suddenly, the portal to Chaundoon was closing, and Glomer immediately rushed back to his beloved city...only to arrive too late, as the portal had closed. This saddened Glomer, for he now regretted ever leaving Chaundoon. But Punky, true to her word, chose to adopt Glomer as her new friend; she wouldn't abandon him like her parents abandoned her. Likewise, Glomer wouldn't abandon Punky either, for the friendship he felt from her was now inside his heart, and it would remain with him for all of eternity should he ever return to Chaundoon. But for right now, their fates had been linked. The alarm clock on Punky's dresser went off at 7am, and the sun was slowly rising near Punky's window, which was shaded by a curtain of a happy-faced crescent moon and several stars. Punky herself was stirred awake by the alarm. She yawned, stretched out ler limbs, and scratched her back. She then got up from her bed, which went down from her movement, and went to turn off her alarm, and in her pajamas no less. She pulled up the moon curtain to reveal the rising sun. Brandon had also awakened, having yawned and stretched out his own limbs. It would be the start of a new day for them both. They both had eyes the color of brown. "Good morning, Brandon," Punky said to her animal compatriot. "Are you ready and raring to go?" Brandon barked an enthusiastic yes. "Then let's go!" she declared happily as she and Brandon walked out the open door and into the kitchen for some breakfast. When they arrived, they were treated with such a sight. On the table was a large plate of cut, syrup-coated pancakes, bacon, and eggs with a glass of orange juice. On the floor, Brandon's bowl was filled with spliced watermelons and was accompanied by a glass bowl of water. "Wow," whispered Punky, her eyes wide in amazement. She smelled the food on the plate and discovered it was freshly cooked. Now she really felt like eating breakfast. Before she sat down at the table, she noticed a familiar presence entering the kitchen. It was Henry, her foster father, in his pajamas. His hair was a mixture of blonde and grey, and his eyes were blue. He was smiling proudly. "Good morning, Punky and Brandon," he greeted. "I hope you enjoy your meal." Punky was stunned by his presence. She asked him, "Did you do all this?" "Why, of course," answered Henry. "I've made sure that the food on your plate was nice and toasty warm." Punky was at a loss for words. No way would Henry be able to make breakfast this fresh so quickly. It made absolutely no sense. What was really going on with him? Was it some kind of condition that he was keeping quiet about? "Um, Punky? Punky, are you there?" Henry's voice snapped Punky out of her reverie. "Oh, yeah, Henry. I'm here." "Please, eat your breakfast. It's not getting any hotter." "Are you sure you're feeling alright?" Punky asked her foster father, to which he callously laughed. "Yes, my dear," he replied. "I've never felt more better in my life." "Okay, Henry. If you say so," Punky replied back, and she decided to drop the subject for now. She sat down and ate her breakfast while Brandon feasted on the watermelons. "I hope you enjoy yourself today. Time waits for no one, you know," Henry advised his foster daughter in that same cheery manner, and he left her and Brandon alone. Soon after that, a green-eyed gopher-type creature magically appeared above Punky and Brandon. It was none other than Glomer himself. "Hi, Glomer," greeted Punky in whispers to the small creature so he wouldn't be found out by Henry. "Hi, Punky friend. What you be doing today?" the Glomley whispered back. Like all Glomleys, Glomer's speech pattern was limited. But, it didn't stop him from being there for Punky. "I think something's going on with Henry," Punky replied. "He made all this food for me and Brandon in a nutshell. Nobody can produce food so quickly. Do you want some bacon?" She offered Glomer a piece of bacon. "I no mind. Thank you," Glomer said and took the bacon from Punky. He chewed it all up rather quickly thanks to him being a magic user. The taste of it satisfied the little one, and he licked his lips. "Mmm," he said dreamily. "Glad you enjoyed it," said Punky happily, but then she reverted back to her worried state. Henry's strange behavior baffled the young girl for some reason. She gazed at the living room, wondering what might have caused the behavior. As soon as she finished with her breakfast, she would have to ask her friends about Henry, but would wait until school was over. It never hurt to try, at least. "Glomer, why don't we talk to Cherie, Margaux, and Allen about Henry after school?" she consulted her Glomley comrade. "They might provide us some clues about why he's acting all weird today." Glomer asked, "Why? What wrong with Henry? Is he starting to grow long beard?" "Haha! You silly Glomley," laughed Punky, then she got serious again. "No, it's not that. You should've seen the way he behaved toward me and Brandon. It was like he didn't have a care in the world about what would happen to him. He knows more than he's letting on, and it's definitely *not* growing beards." At those words, Glomer's curiosity was peaked. He agreed, "Okay, Punky friend. We talk to your friends later." Punky nodded. "That's good to hear." Glomer smiled at his human friend. "You bestest friend I ever met." He hugged Punky. Brandon was a little offended and whimpered sadly. "Aw, Brandon," cooed Punky, patting Brandon on the head and making him feel better. "You and Glomer are *both* my bestest friends." Now she was certain she made the right choice in telling her other friends about her foster father's odd behavior. ***** When school was done later on, Punky, her friends, Glomer, and Brandon were assembled at Punky's treehouse. They were debating the issue concerning what Henry had said to Punky during her breakfast. Punky had her hair tied in small pigtails and wore her usual, mismatched clothes (a purple sleeveless vest [which had a red heart on the left side] under a turquoise shirt and red sweater, blue jeans [one side rolled up and the other with a magenta scarf tied to her ankle], and mismatched shoes - one pink and the other yellow) while Cherie, a brown-eyed African American with her afro hair tied in a pigtail itself, wore a sleeveless peach shirt, fuschia jeans, and white shoes, Margaux, the third girl who had blond hair and blue eyes, wore two pink bows on her hair and had on a pink-and-white dress, white footies, and pink tap shoes, and Allen, the only boy in Punky's group with short, platinum blond hair and eyes the same as Margaux's, wore a brown vest underneath a white sweater, beige jeans, and red-and-gray sneakers. Noticably, Cherie wasn't wearing her headband and arm ring - a neutral decision on her part. Glomer and Brandon remained quiet, intently listening in on the kids' conversation. Punky was the most concerned for Henry. "I just don't understand him. He didn't even bother to ask what I wanted. It's like...it's like he's a totally different person." "Well, maybe he's just happy," surmised Cherie to Punky. "It could be because you're the constant joy in his life." "Maybe he's just feeling lucky," said Allen in his usual geeky way. "Or..." Margaux offered matter-of-factly, "...it could be because his memory is fading." Punky merely scoffed at that remark. "No way. Henry's memory works just fine. You're just pulling my leg." "He might be prone to having chest pain," deduced Cherie. "He's probably turning half deaf and may require a hearing aid," Allen duly noted. "Or a kidney transplant," added Punky. "It's either those three or...or perhaps his time is coming," concluded Margaux bluntly. Punky's, Allen's, Cherie's, Brandon's, and Glomer's eyes widened in surprise at Margaux's claim. Cherie snapped to Margaux, "Don't say such things like that!" "Why not?" shot back Margaux. "Nobody lives forever, so it's best to make due with what happens now." "I'd take Henry losing his memory, having a kidney transplant, or losing part of his hearing over him dying any day," challenged Punky. Margaux sighed at Punky's bravery. "You poor, deluded kid," she sullenly said. "You're too wrapped up in yourself to see the big picture." She stood up and looked Punky directly in the eye and smirked. "You know I'm right," she added in a low tone. Allen couldn't stand for this, so he got up and made Margaux face him instead. "Margaux, that's enough," he spat. "You're scaring Punky with this nonsense about Henry dying." Punky was in her thoughts, too distracted to notice Cherie joining in the eventual brawl between her, Margaux, and Allen that would break out. Punky didn't want to believe Margaux's words, but somewhere in the back of her mind, she knew the proud blonde was telling the truth. What if Henry's time really was coming? Punky imagined herself being sent to a new foster home, or worse, boarding school. Neither option to her would be the same as what she had with Henry. If he died, then Punky's world would surely fall apart; she had already lost so much in her life. Coming out of her thoughts, she angrily shouted to Cherie, Allen, and Margaux, "That's enough! No more fighting!" Immediately, the three kids called it off, but not before Allen and Cherie gave Margaux a brief death glare. "Peasants," Margaux spat, a word she always used around those who were beneath her. Before they all could take their focus off of Henry, Punky informed Glomer of an idea that she hoped would work. "Say, Glomer, whatya say to...I dunno...preventing one's death?" "Punky friend, you not suggesting..." Glomer was shocked, as were Punky's friends; Brandon whimpered, fearing for his master/best friend. Punky nodded. "Yep. I want you to save Henry's life." "Whoa, whoa! Take it easy now, Punky," implored Allen. "Do you really wanna mess with the forces of nature?" "Y-you know I was only joking, right?" laughed Margaux nervously. "Please reconsider, Punky. *Please!*" Cherie begged. Punky's friends' pleas fell on deaf ears. All that was on her mind was saving Henry from "certain doom." "I know you can do it, Glomer," she encouraged the little creature. "Pretty please?" Now Glomer felt torn between using common sense and doing what Punky asked. No one could raise the dead, and it especially applied to Glomer's kind. But if he didn't oblige his charge, then she would immediately shut him and everyone else in her life out. Having thought this through, Glomer made his choice at last. "Okay, Punky friend," he proudly said. "I do it." "No, Glomer!" cried Punky's friends frantically, but it was too late as Glomer held out his hands and zapped his magic sparkles across the backyard all the way to where Henry was. Unfortunately, due to Glomer's inexperience, the sparkles bounced upwards and ricocheted into the partly-cloudy sky. All of the sudden, dark clouds eclipsed the sky and the shining sun, and thunder and lightning flashed in front of the inhabitants of the treehouse. *Uh-oh. I done a bad thing,* Glomer thought with despair. "I-I think we better stay inside until the storm passes," Cherie said fearfully. Punky could only stare at the floor in disbelief. She really thought her idea would work. She really believed she could stop Henry from leaving her all alone. And now, her plan had went straight out the window. Guilt overcoming her, she facepalmed with both hands and sobbed. "What've I done?" she asked no one, her voice muted and cracking. Then, she and her crew felt a gust of wind blowing their way. Accompanying that was a glowing purple portal that appeared in the sky. It fired a spotlight-like beam towards Punky and friends, paralyzing them and forcing them to close their eyes, and it seemed their bodies would remain frozen as if they were stone statues. "Hey! What's happening?!" shouted Margaux. "I...I don't know, but we can't fight it off!" Allen shouted just as much. "This beam is just too powerful for us!" Cherie called out. "We're all doomed!" Punky, however, didn't share her friends' fear and basically resigned to whatever fate befell she and them. "This is it then," she whispered as tears fell from her eyes. "There's no escape for us. I'll never see Henry again. I've failed him." Multi-colored lightning came out of the beam and engulfed the small crew, but it didn't so much as electrocute them. Instead, it carried them upwards into the portal. Everyone screamed (Brandon howled) as they were getting closer and closer to the portal. And then, they were inside it, absolutely nowhere to be seen. Afterwards, the beam, its portal, and the dark clouds evaporated, leaving the sun and partly-cloudly blue sky in their place. It was seemingly the last time that Punky Brewster had spent on Earth. A squadron of birds flew by as if nothing ever happened. ***** Henry, now dressed in a green shirt, dark-blue jeans, and black socks after taking a shower, put on his shoes and rushed outside to the backyard to see what the commotion was about. He thought he'd heard a storm brewing, and he looked up to the sky to see that there was no storm; it died down so quickly then. He took notice of Punky and her friends not in her treehouse. "Punky? Where are you?" he questioned to dead air. School was over for the day, so there was no reason for Punky to focus anymore on schoolwork other than homework. Henry shrugged it off as simply a field-trip assignment, but he wished that Punky had told him first. Nonetheless, he knew that Punky would take care of herself. He trusted her. *What do you have to worry about, Henry? Punky's a strong person. You need to learn to let her make her own choices once in a while.* He smiled kindly and went back inside his apartment to go about his business, having gotten his thoughts in order. Punky would return to him on her own accord.