Chapter 34 in the Ongoing Adventures of Nick the Exploding Cat

In our last adventure, Nick the Exploding Cat — a lactose intolerant kitty whose stomach will explode and guts pour out every time he drinks most milk and dairy products — and his constantly exasperated female human companion, Nadine, were captured by the lecherous Sidney Whipsmart while exploring his Liar of Devious Evil looking for the Giant Ball of Golden Cheese. Once eaten, as you may recall, the Giant Ball of Golden Cheese will prevent Nick from being lactose intolerant and cure him of his ability to explode — cheese that Sidney was planning to eat for himself once it had properly aged. (Sidney, as you will recall, is a natural cheese connoisseur.) In this installment of Nick the Exploding Cat, Sidney is in the process of marooning Nick and Nadine on a plateau in some barren, desert landscape. Let’s now take a gander at what transpires … .

A helicopter hovered overhead, the same one that had lowered Sidney, Nick and Nadine to the plateau via a rope ladder. On the plateau itself, there was nothing there except for a bucket, a mop and an illustrated book about birds. Nick grimaced sourly. None of these things would help him and Nadine escape from being marooned on top of the very high elevation. It was so high, in fact, that Nick could barely see the desert floor, though what he could see was that it was studded with cacti.

“Adios, mes amigos!” said Sidney, twisting his handlebar mustache with a free hand, as the other held onto the rope ladder he was now standing upon, the same one that had lowered Nick and Nadine into what would appear to be exile. “Not much you can do to escape my clutches now! Mwah-hah-hah-ha-hah! The cheese will be mine! All mine!”

And, with that, Sidney made a motion to the helicopter operator to lift him up and away. Nick and Nadine watched as the helicopter, with Sidney still on the rope ladder, made its way into the distance where it became nothing but a distant speck on the horizon.

“What are we going to do now?” whined Nick. “We’re trapped!”

“Not quite so fast, Nick,” said Nadine, reaching into the pockets of her jeans. “Sidney forgot to search me and I happen to have two lactose pills.”

“But what good will that do?” opined Nick.

“Well, if you eat them,” said a tired Nadine, who had explained this sort of thing to Nick a thousand times and had now produced the pills and held them outreached in her palm, “then your stomach will explode, as usual, and I can use your intestines as a rope to climb down to the bottom and go for help!”

“But I just want to be normal,” whimpered Nick. “I don’t want to explode anymore!”

“Just do it just this once,” sighed Nadine, tired of Nick’s constant complaining. She thought to herself for what seemed to be the ten thousandth time: if only I could find a way to get a new feline partner, I would be purr-fectly content to do just that. “Once we get the Giant Ball of Golden Cheese, you’ll be back to being a normal cat.”

“Trust me,” continued Nadine, “it’ll help get us off this plateau and back to grabbing the cheese you covet from Sidney’s nefarious clutches. And then you can be normal again.”

Nick thought about it, and realized that exploding once again might be a good idea. At least, Nadine might be onto something: it could help them escape.

“You’re right, Nadine!” said Nick, grabbing the pills. “What a good idea! You’re so smart, Nadine!”

“Yes, I know,” purred Nadine, rolling her eyes.

Nick took the two pills now in his paw and swiftly gobbled them down. For a moment after swallowing, it would seem that nothing was about to happen. Then, slowly and surely, Nick made a gurgling sound, as though he was being strangled, and a fist punched out of his belly. His belly contorted into all sorts of weird shapes, and then this was followed by a ripping sound, and then a Kersplickity-Splitckity-Splat!

Nick’s belly exploded, and miles upon miles of intestines unfurled. They poured over the edge of the precipice and Nick could see that the intestines almost reached the ground below.

“It’ll be a bit of a leap,” said Nadine. “But I think I can climb down and then jump to the desert floor.”

“Better watch out for those cacti!” said Nick. “Their needles sure look sharp!”

“Don’t worry,” said Nadine, wondering if this might actually be a getaway from Nick once and for all. “I think I’ll be able to manage.”

“Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!” exclaimed Nick. “My ability to explode my stomach has sure proven useful.”

“It always does,” grumbled Nadine. “Remember when we were able to use your guts as a lasso to snag Doctor Awe and his incredible minions?” [Editor’s note: See Chapter 17.]

“Oh, right,” said Nick. “I forgot about that.”

Nick was always forgetting. Nadine was constantly aware of this.

“Here,” said Nick. “I’ll hold onto the intestinal tract and you go ahead and lower yourself down.”

Nick held onto the end of his intestines that were still connected to his stomach, and with some careful maneuvering, as Nick’s guts were awfully slimy, Nadine was able to climb down the side of the plateau and jumped down into the landscape below.

“Don’t worry-ry-ry,” said Nadine, her voice echoing across the desert floor. “I’ll be back in a jiff-ff-ff.”

Nick gathered his guts and put them back inside his belly. In time, his stomach would heal and he would be right back to being normal — well, as normal as a lactose intolerant exploding cat could be — in just a few hours.

However, a few hours passed, and while Nick healed, there was no sign of Nadine or her help to be found. Day passed into night, and night passed into day, and day passed into night again, and night passed once more into day. And, yet, there was no sign of Nadine.

“Boy,” said Nick to himself, now visibly sweating under the hot desert sun. He licked his parched lips. “It sure is hot up here. Maybe I should just, you know, pass the time by reading this book about birds … .”

And before Nick knew it, he had read the book about birds a million times as the sun and moon exchanged places countless times on the horizon … .

And so, this ends this installment of Nick the Exploding Cat. Will Nadine be able to put together a rescue party? Will Nick be saved? Or is Nadine just using this as an excuse to finally bail on her feline friend and find a new cat to adore? And what about Sidney Whipsmart? Will his plan to eat the precious Giant Ball of Golden Cheese, thus preventing Nick from ever being a normal cat, ever be averted?

Tune in next time for another scintillating chapter in the Ongoing Adventures of Nick the Exploding Cat!