This story is about a bear called Winnie The Pooh, or Pooh, for short. Pooh lived in his humble abode in the Hundred Acre Wood where he had many adventures with his friends. There was Piglet and Eeyore and Kanga and Roo. And Tigger and Owl and yes, Rabbit too. Despite Pooh’s unusual adventures in the Hundred Acre Wood, every day ended just about the same. With a happy ending. And today was no exception.
Pooh never questioned this and why should he? Especially in such a wondrous place like the Hundred Acre Wood. The sun was just beginning to set after another eventful day. Everyone said their goodbyes to one another as they made their way to their homes. The sky grew dark and Pooh was ready for a nap. After walking into the house labeled “Sanders” (from the previous resident), its current resident changed into his nightgown and crawled into bed. He was a sleepy and tubby, little cubby all stuffed with fluff. Just a silly old bear… or was he?
His Pooh-koo clock rang, signaling it was midnight. “Oh bother.” Pooh mumbled to himself. He was comfy under his blanket, but was unable to rest. He had been lying awake for hours, hoping he would drift off to the land of dreams soon. But his stomach growled at him in defiance. “It would appear that my tummy has the rumblies.” he giggled.
He did not want to bother his friends that were probably fast asleep. Pooh wondered where he might find some honey at a time like this. He thinked and he thinked and he thunk some more. Then, he got a thought. He remembered seeing a honey tree near a cliff while out with his friends today. “Maybe the bees wouldn’t mind me grabbing just a little smackerel?” he said to himself as he licked his lips. Pooh crawled out of his bed and grabbed a box of matches off his table. He set one ablaze and lit a half-melted candle. With the warm glow of his candle holder to keep him company, he made his way out the door for his midnight snack.
Lucky for Pooh, the night was still and not as blustery as it had been earlier that day. To get to the honey tree, he would have to pass the six pine trees. They were much, much scarier at night. The trees towered over his head very high and creaked and moaned as he passed by. He was hoping there weren’t any Woozles hiding in the tall branches that would jump out and scare him. His idea to make this trip alone wasn’t the best idea he’s ever had, but it was better than trying to get some shut eye on an empty stomach. Pooh cautiously passed the last pine tree and breathed a sigh of relief. “It was all my imagination” he chuckled. Confident now that nothing was spying on him, he picked up the pace and began to sing a happy tune. “Hummmm Dee Dum Dum, Hummmm Dee Dum, Onnnn My Way To Eat Honey, Yum Yum…” His singing dropped to a whisper as he passed by Rabbit’s house, so he wouldn’t wake his friend. He must have been in a deep slumber because Pooh could hear snoring from just outside his windows. He also heard a stream flowing nearby and remembered that it led all the way to the honey tree. Pooh followed the splashing noises, while being careful not to fall in. And just when his legs were starting to get tired, he finally saw it! The honey tree sat next to a cliff and had a large hole near the top, where he had seen bees flying into it earlier that day. Pooh approached the tree and realized he couldn’t climb it while also holding his candle. So he sat it down near the trunk and began his ascent. It just so happened that the moon was out tonight and as full as Pooh was aiming to be.
He let its light guide him as he carefully lifted himself up onto each branch. His excitement grew as he saw the bee’s nest get closer and closer. Surprisingly though, he could not hear any buzzing. “Hoo, perhaps they are too busy sleeping to notice that their honey I'll be eating” he said to himself with a grin. Once he finally reached the last branch, he straddled it, and peered inside the tree hollow. It was hard to make it out, but he could smell the glorious smell of honey covering the inside of the nest. But as he reached in to scoop some up, some rather angry bees flew out to protect their hive. “Oh, stuff and fluff.” Pooh stood up on the branch and tried to swat the bees away from his face. While he was distracted, one of his feet slipped off the branch and he went tumbling downwards. He tried catching himself on one of the lower branches but unfortunately missed and fell off of the cliff. He would’ve yelled for help but he knew none of his friends were nearby. He covered his eyes in fear of the plummet. Pooh fell only a short while before, to his surprise, he landed on something not far from the cliffside. It feels like he was on solid ground now, but how could that be? He had only fallen a couple seconds at most. He uncovered his eyes and then looked up. The top of the cliff could be seen not far from where he landed. He was sitting on what felt like some kind of fabric. He noticed he had ripped some of it with his landing and could see a dim light emitting from behind whatever it was. Pooh rose to his feet and went to inspect the tear he had made. Out of curiosity he pulled the fabric further apart like opening some curtains and suddenly found himself in a new world. A dark and symmetrical world with lots of doors and long hallways.
Pooh cautiously made his way down one of these hallways and noticed that each of the many, many doors had their own label. Medical Supplies. Generator Room #3. Climate Simulation. Stage Equipment. Spare Parts. He got on his tippy toes and turned the knob to enter this room. It was pitch black. Without his candle, Pooh had to find another way to brighten his surroundings. He noticed the shadow of what looked like a cardboard box near the entrance. He hoisted himself on top of it, then felt around the walls for something useful. After a while of flailing around in the darkness, his hand collided with a switch and suddenly the room was lit with a blinding white light. “Oh my” he said while squinting his beady eyes. He turned around to see what the room was filled with. Pooh was in shock. It was none other than all his friends from the Hundred Acre Wood! Perhaps him stumbling upon this place wasn't an accident and they had planned on surprising him? “How wonderful seeing you all here,” he said, grinning. But there was no response. Pooh was confused at their silence and decided to get a closer look at his friends. Now that he was face to face with them, he noticed they all looked rather tired. As if they were napping while standing up. He also found it peculiar that they were all lined up in a row. Perhaps they were waiting here for him all night and fell asleep because he took too long to find them?
He attempted to wake Tigger first. “You can wake up from your nap now, Tigger.” he giggled as he waved his hand in front of his striped friend’s face to see if he would notice. No reaction. “Why now, don’t you feel like bouncing?” Pooh asked him as he playfully pushed his chest. Pooh instantly regretted this. Tigger slowly fell backwards and Pooh panicked as he crashed into his other friends, eventually toppling them all like dominoes. “I’m so very sorry, I didn’t mean to-” then Pooh stopped speaking. He noticed that not one of his friends had woken up. They just laid on the ground stiff and silent. Pooh hoped his friends were not playing a practical joke on him, because it was not a very nice one. He called out each of their names and tried to shake them awake, but they didn’t budge. He wanted to get to the bottom of this. He noticed some large cardboard boxes to the left of where his friends had stood and decided to open the first one up. It was ANOTHER Tigger. But how could this be? He checked the contents of the other boxes and found what appeared to be twins and triplets of his companions. These couldn’t all really be his friends, could they? He walked further into the room and found a couple of shelves. On them lay a bunch of containers neatly labeled and organized alphabetically. He was further disturbed by what was inside of them. Abdomens. Arms. Beaks. Chests. Ears. Eyes. Fingers. Legs. Mouths. Tails. Toes. Wings. Pooh was devastated by his findings and ran out of the scary room and slammed the door shut behind him. Maybe Pooh actually had fallen asleep on an empty stomach, he thought. Maybe this was all just a nightmare and he doesn't remember dozing off. Perhaps if he goes through a different door, his dream won't be as scary. What if the next room he enters is completely filled with honey?
Yes, that’s it! If all these rooms have bizarre things in them, this must be a dream. To calm himself down he would prove it. He would see if he could find the honey room. Pooh got to his feet and continued bravely down the hall. He read the labels on the doors as he passed them.
Janitorial. Generator Room #4. Surveillance. Food Storage. Aha! Pooh had a feeling he would find some honey in the Food Storage room. But just as he reached to turn the doorknob he heard a familiar noise come from the door labeled Surveillance. Pooh walked to the other side of the hall to listen more closely. That was odd. It was the ringing sound of his Pooh-koo clock.
Pooh opened the door up to another dark room, but not as dark as the last one. This one had a bunch of glowing screens on one side with a long desk and lots of chairs. Pooh climbed into one of the chairs and studied the screens. What he saw baffled him. It was his room.
It appeared to be a live feed of the inside of his house with the exact time of day ticking accurately at the bottom of the screen. It read 1:02:47, which must have been right since he had only left his house about an hour ago. He pointed his attention toward the other screens. He could see all of his friends sleeping soundly in their beds. Each live feed was titled with his friends' names but Pooh couldn't find his name. For some odd reason, the live feed recording inside his house was titled "Jacob". He looked down at the desk and saw a bunch of papers lying around. He skimmed a few of them but couldn’t make much sense of what he was reading. “While the memory formatting of the hippocampus, amygdala, prefrontal cortex, and cerebellum has proven successful, his brain appears to have retained motor functions after being implanted into the new body. Subject Jacob Sanders is to be observed daily between 08:00 - 22:00, no exceptions. If you suspect you won’t be able to make your shift, please give the office a minimum of 4 hours notice. Remember to administer a higher dose of anesthetic prior to routine maintenance every Saturday 23:00 - 0:200. All faulty animatronics are to be reset as soon as possible (outside of subject’s view) with updated firmware before returning to the stage. Any deviations in expected behavior are to be reported to management immediately.”
This was getting too weird for Pooh so he decided to leave. "Even if this is just a dream, I think I am done dreaming it" Pooh said to himself. He climbed off the chair and left the strange room. He shut the door and headed back the way he came. If he returned to his bed, then surely this bad dream would come to an end. He walked back through the hole he had made and looked up at the cliff. It wasn't very far. He jumped and was able to grab the edge and pull himself back into the Hundred Acre Wood. Pooh grabbed his candle, returned to his home, and fell asleep soon after lying down once more.
When Pooh woke from his slumber, he felt surprisingly energized first thing in the morning. He leapt out of bed and looked at himself in the mirror. "Since I am feeling so rested, maybe last night WAS just a bad dream" Pooh declared. He changed out of his nightgown, did his stoutness exercises, and was ready to start the day. But right before he went to grab a honeypot for breakfast, he noticed something he hadn't before on the door to his cabinet.
It was a small rounded object that looked like a ladybug painted black. Pooh tried scraping it off his cabinet door, but it wouldn't budge. He suddenly became paranoid again. Is this what was spying on him and his friends? He stopped touching it and knew there was only one way to prove if last night's events were real or not. He would return to the cliff.
After he closed his front door, Pooh was instantly tackled to the ground. He looked up to see it was none other than Tigger greeting him as he usually does. "Hey buddy ol pal, where ya headed?" he asked in a cheery voice.
"Oh, good morning Tigger. I was just headed to the honey tree because it seems I am all out of honey." "Hoo hoo hoo! Well then chum I'll ethcort you there in the beth way I know how. By bounthin!" he hopped off Pooh's chest and they headed towards their destination.
On the way there, Pooh has a question bubble up in his brain. "Say Tigger, do you ever wonder if you have any relatives? Like maybe a twin?" He responded "Dat's ridicurus buddy bear. You know there's only one Tigger and that's me!" Pooh was trying to make sense of the strange dream he had last night. "I suppose you're right. I mean, I've never met another Pooh besides myself."
When they arrived at the honey tree, Pooh walked over to the trunk. He glanced over where he had fallen in his dream, without trying to look too obvious. "Well aren't cha gonna climb up and get that there honey?" Tigger called. Pooh didn't answer. He was too distracted by what he was looking at. It was faint, but it was there. He could see the clouds and horizon stretched out before him, along with an almost invisible line, where it looked like some ripped fabric had been sewn back together. It was real.
Pooh was not very good at lying to his friends, but since he was now unsure who his friends really were, it made the lie easier to tell. "Actually Tigger, I feel I may have a tummy ache. I think I'd better return home and lie down a while." he finally replied while holding his stomach. Pooh decided to walk back home alone and locked his front door. But when he went to turn around, he realized there was an intruder in his house! It was none other than Eeyore sitting in the middle of his floor. “Hello, Pooh Bear…” he said in his sad, slow voice. “Oh, hello Eeyore. What brings you by today?” Pooh asked. “Just thought I’d stop by and... let you know they’re onto you…” Eeyore mumbled. "Who’s on to me?" Pooh replied. "I wasn’t supposed to open my mouth…" Eeyore said nervously as he glanced in the direction of Pooh's honeypot cabinet. Pooh had a feeling they were being watched. Maybe it had to do with that small object he found on his cabinet door earlier? Was it spying on them?
Pooh casually walked over and picked up one of his empty pots and then stood out of view of the suspicious object. "Huh, looks like I am still all out of honey." Then very suddenly, he smashed the pot into the cabinet door, breaking the object into tiny pieces as it fell to the ground.
Eeyore flinched but was still paralyzed with fear. "They said they'd kill me if I told ya…" he whispered as his eyes fell to the floor. Pooh was worried that his friend was still hesitant. "You can tell me Eeyore. I promise I'll keep you safe." Pooh assured him. There was a long pause. "Well... alright then."
He told Pooh that everything he saw last night was real. All his friends were actually just complex machines in disguise. Even him. And explained that the Hundred Acre Wood was all a part of some secret experiment. He told him how all the honey in the Hundred Acre Wood was somehow drugged and was meant to sedate Pooh, especially during the night for maintenance. "What do you mean by maintenance?" Pooh asked. But before Eeyore could answer he was interrupted by a bunch of knocking on Pooh's front door. It was his neighbors coming to check up on him.
"Hey buddy bear I brought you somfin ta cheer ya up!" Tigger called. Piglet was also there. "Sorry to b-b-bother you P-Pooh but I also got a surprise for you as well." Even Owl had come. "I say good chap, open up so we can shower you with honey! I guarantee it'll lift your spirits!" He could also hear Kanga and Roo offering up honey. Pooh backed away from the door. The knocking was so loud, he didn't notice one of his friends had snuck into his home through his window.
Pooh turned around when he heard the intruder's feet hit the ground. "Christopher Robin?" Pooh asked. "Hey ya silly old bear, I was coming to see if you're feeling any better. The whole Hundred Acre Wood is worried about you." Pooh responded, "I just have a tummy ache I think I just need some rest." "What's Eeyore doing here?" Christopher asked as he inched closer to them.
"Oh, I just finished some honey Eeyore brought by for me, and he was just on his way out" Pooh lied. "What a coincidence! I also brought you a snack. Can you guess what it is Pooh?" Pooh had just now noticed Christopher Robin had one of his arms behind his back.
"Hmm… could it possibly be more delicious honey?" he asked, forcing a smile. "Maybe" Christopher smirked. "But if you want your surprise, first you gotta close your eyes and put out your hands." he teased as he approached Pooh.
"Sorry Christopher Robin, but… I don't think I will." Christopher scowled and pulled out his arm to reveal a syringe. He lunged at Pooh. Winnie the Pooh was usually a bear of very little brain, but he had already figured out that his former friend was up to no good.
Pooh dodged the tip of the needle and grabbed Christopher's arm with one hand, his wrist with the other, and pinned him against the wall. In one swift motion, he twisted his arm and directed the syringe into his back. Pooh pushed against his thumb to inject whatever substance was meant for him. Christopher Robin had a look of horror on his face when he realized what happened. Pooh held him tightly until he passed out from its contents and then let his body collapse to the ground. “Well would ya look at that… he’s not a robot like the others” Eeyore said with a sigh of relief. Pooh noticed something sticking out of the back pocket of his unconscious friend. He pulled out some folded papers and looked them over. “It’s a map… and a manual.” Pooh exclaimed. “It says… Burlington Bunker? Is that where we really are?” Eeyore shrugged, “Must be, because I know the Hundred Acre Wood can’t be real… I noticed the sun coming up only a few hours after it had set one night while everyone else was sleeping. Thought it rather peculiar... But before I could tell anyone, a couple of men in white lab coats kidnapped and interrogated me. Told me what I was and threatened to shut me down for good if I spoke on it...” Pooh continued reading. The manual he had found was a detailed diagram of the inner workings of each of his friends from the Hundred Acre Wood. Eeyore was right. They were all just metal and circuitry on the inside. There were instructions on how to factory reset each of them in case of emergency. Each one had a unique spot where their reset button was hidden. Once reset, they would no longer be able to be controlled by whoever was in charge, and would need an update installed to reestablish the connection. Pooh memorized these locations as the pounding on his door became more and more deafening. He suddenly felt as if his mind wasn’t as clouded as it normally was when numbed up with honey. Then he noticed something odd.
“Eeyore, why can’t I find myself in this manual?” Pooh asked. “Maybe you aren’t like us.” Eeyore replied, sounding very unsure. Pooh felt around his body for a reset switch just to be safe. Nothing. As he continued to look over the documents, he had a realization. “We have to get out of here. And we’re gonna need help doing so.” Eeyore didn’t seem as optimistic. “What do you suggest we do about it?” He replied, “I don’t hear Rabbit out there so he must still be home. Maybe he can help us find a way out.” Eeyore protested, “But what if he’s out to get you like the others?” Pooh snapped back bravely while grabbing his cork gun, “We’ve got to try.” Just before Pooh’s front door gave way to the pounding, the two of them snuck out his window and stealthily hurried over to Rabbit’s house.
When they arrived, Pooh hurriedly knocked on the front door. “WHAT IS WITH ALL THE RACKET?” Rabbit answered the door with an annoyed look on his face. “Oh, its you Pooh.” “I need your help Rabbit” Pooh panted. “Ohhhhh no, I can’t afford to give you anymore honey Pooh, I’m all cleaned out.” Pooh quickly responded, “No, it's not that! Me and Eeyore are in danger.” Rabbit looked skeptical, but let them in and closed the door. “Well, take a seat and tell me what all this fuss is about.” Rabbit said while pouring both of them some tea. But as Pooh started to wind down and take his first sip, Rabbit made his move. He grabbed a shovel resting against his wall and swung it at Pooh. Pooh barely ducked in time and Rabbit’s tea cups were shattered. He grabbed his cork gun and blocked the shovel just as Rabbit swung a second time. Then, he quickly swung behind Rabbit and pressed a switch on his lower left leg. Rabbit dropped his shovel and stopped moving. Eeyore spoke. "See, they tried to reset me like that... but luckily my switch was broken."
After a couple minutes, Rabbit's eyes opened back up and he looked around his own house, confused. "What just happened? Did I fall asleep?" Pooh replied "I'll explain it to you later Rabbit, but right now, we are in very big trouble." Pooh explained how everyone in the Hundred Acre Wood had gone mad and was hunting them down, so as to avoid sounding even crazier by trying to explain that everyone, including Rabbit himself, were actually remote-controlled robots and that their home was all an illusion.
After Pooh told his story, Rabbit broke out in laughter. "Ha! You expect me to believe such a tall tale? That's rich!" Pooh had a very serious look. "I know it sounds odd but we need you to trust us, Rabbit." He stopped laughing. After a bit of pondering, he agreed to help them. "Normally I wouldn't fall for such nonsense but both of you look scared half to death, so I'll go along. What can I do to help?"
For the next couple hours, they brainstormed a strategy to incapacitate all their friends until they were deemed safe again. They studied the map Pooh took and found what they think may be a door to escape Burlington Bunker. Rabbit crept around the Hundred Acre Wood setting traps and gathering the supplies they would need. He would occasionally run into one of the others trying to track down Pooh and "help" them look for him.
Pooh and Eeyore stayed hidden in Rabbit's house preparing things they’d need to defend themselves, in the event their plan failed. A modified cork gun that shoots out sand to blind pursuers, makeshift grenades made from mason jars filled with bees, and of course, Eeyore's tail glued backwards to his forehead, so he looked like a battle-ready unicorn.
Once the "sun" went down, the three of them decided to make their move. Their friends had all split up in search of Pooh to cover more ground. So they figured they would pick them off one by one and then head for the exit. Piglet was the first victim. He was snooping around outside Rabbit's house, when Rabbit opened his front door and called out to him. "Piglet, I found Pooh! He's been hiding in my house this whole time!"
Piglet ran in the house holding a syringe like Christopher Robin had. Rabbit knocked the needle out of Piglet's hand and Pooh hopped out from behind the door with a honeypot and imprisoned Piglet inside of it. Piglet screamed and thrashed around trying to break free, but Pooh held the honeypot firmly against the floor. He then carefully lifted one side and grabbed one of Piglet's feet. He pressed a button on the bottom and heard the commotion cease.
After a couple of minutes they heard a trembling voice. "Where a-a-am I? It's so d-d-d-d-dark in here." Pooh lifted the honeypot and explained their situation to Piglet. He agreed to join them in their mission. The four of them geared up and headed outside to begin their hunt. They found their next target bouncing around not far from Pooh's “thotful spot”.
Pooh sat at his usual spot on the log and pretended to be deep in thought until Tigger noticed him. It only took a few minutes until Tigger came hopping in a rush, from a distance. "There ya are, buddy bear! I been looking all over fur ya!" He bounced more and more aggressively towards Pooh, looking ready to pounce on him. Then he suddenly stopped bouncing and his chin hit the ground with a smack. Rabbit had dumped a large pile of honey in Tigger's path and his tail was stuck deep.
Pooh slid down and ran over to Tigger to hit the reset switch on his neck. They didn't bother wasting time digging him out of the honey and instead resumed their hunt. The next one to cross their path was Roo. They watched him and Kanga search for the gang around Eeyore's gloomy spot while hiding behind some bushes. But when Roo strayed a little too far from his mother, they seized the opportunity. Rabbit jumped out and snatched up Roo from behind while Piglet jumped on his shoulders and quickly tied pillowcases around his eyes and mouth so he wouldn't spot them or call for help. They left a piece of paper on the ground where they had kidnapped him from and headed back towards Rabbit's house.
After Kanga realized she hadn't seen her son in a couple minutes, she called for him. "Oh my. Roo! Where'd you run off to, dear?" But there was no answer. She frantically looked around and eventually found the paper the gang had left behind. It was a ransom note signed by the "Heffalumps and Woozles" telling her to meet them near Rabbit's house if she wanted to see her son again. She had never hopped somewhere so fast in her life.
As Kanga neared Rabbit's house she slowed down and approached the garden cautiously. "Hello? I'm here like you asked! Now give me my baby back!" She squinted in the darkness and could barely make out something in the distance. It was… a chair? She got closer and realized Roo was tied and blindfolded in the chair. "Oh honey!" She hopped to his rescue. "Mama, help me!" he yelled. But a few feet before reaching him, she fell down a very deep pit Rabbit had dug and covered with a sheet and decoy crops much earlier. She pleaded for them to give back her son so without letting Kanga see them, they untied Roo and tossed him down in the hole with her. There was only one left now.
But Owl would not be so easy like the rest. You see, their flying friend was doing a better job hunting their group than they were of him. He was already in the air scanning the ground for the four of them. An owl's vision is impressive, but it pales in comparison to a couple of infrared cameras with facial recognition. He had spotted them shortly after they tossed Roo into the hole and silently dove down to attack.
They were caught off guard when Owl swooped in and disarmed both Rabbit and Pooh by grabbing their shovel and cork gun each with a single talon. He carried them off somewhere and the group took off running. But before they could find shelter he was once more on their tails. Owl made another dive and snatched up Piglet. "Pooooooh! helllllllp!" he yelled in a terrified voice. But his kidnapper was already flapping out of their reach and gaining altitude.
Pooh was panicking, but got an idea. Without asking, Pooh tore off Eeyore's tail from his forehead and tossed it upwards. Piglet was just barely able to catch it in time. He then slid his hand to clutch the end with the nail and stabbed Owl's talons. But his grip stayed firm on Piglet’s waist. Then he reached up and jammed it into one of Owl's eyes and sparks began flying. He immediately let go of Piglet and flew crookedly until he crash landed into the branches of a nearby tree. Rabbit was able to catch Piglet before he hit the ground. All of them shared a sigh of relief. Pooh was able to locate Rabbit’s shovel and Eeyore’s tail, but not his cork gun. Piglet applied some glue and they fastened his tail back onto his head. It was now time for them to escape this fabricated world. Pooh led the others all the way to the cliff where he had torn through this illusion the night before. “Alrighty, now we all need to jump down there.” he pointed over the cliffside. The others weren’t convinced. “Are you sure P-P-P-Pooh?” Piglet asked while shaking. “Oh you must trust me on this. I know it looks crazy.” Pooh pleaded to his uncertain friends. “Well… the rest of the Hundred Acre Wood has gone bonkers, so why quit now?” Rabbit said. They all took a deep breath and jumped together into the abyss. But it wasn’t the impending doom it appeared to be. They landed just a few feet from where they stood and all of them stumbled from such an anticlimactic landing. They had reopened the hole Pooh had torn before and the stitches could be seen poking out from the frayed sides. “Through here” Pooh pointed. One by one, they squeezed through the hole and into the dark hallways. But it was not as quiet as Pooh’s last visit. A camera that had not been installed the night before turned its head towards them and red lights began to flash from the walls. A booming alarm sounded and they knew that time was not on their side. Rabbit pulled out the map and pointed to where the exit was located. “We go left here, then straight, take two rights, and then one more left should lead us out of here!” They wasted no time and sprinted as fast as their little legs would allow them. After the first left, Eeyore glanced behind them and noticed some lights dancing from the hallway they just left. “They’re gaining on us, fellas!” he yelled to the others. But before they could take their first right, Eeyore saw three men in white coats chasing them with flashlights. “Oh no…” he mumbled. “Don’t look back. Just keep running!” Pooh hollered as he stopped for only a moment to throw one of his bee bombs. Pieces of the glass jar exploded all down the hallway. Confused screaming and buzzing could be heard in the distance. They took a right then just as they turned their other right, a couple more men popped out from one of the rooms, holding syringes. Rabbit valiantly went after them with his shovel. “Keep going guys! I’ll buy you some time!” Piglet refused to leave him behind. “No, Rabbit!” he screamed as he ran over to help. But Pooh scooped up his crying friend and kept running. They took their second right and were in the final stretch. When they got to the end of the hall, they took their left and could see the door with the glowing EXIT sign hanging above it. But halfway there, Eeyore noticed another light far away. It was no doubt headed in their direction. He stopped running and neither Pooh or Piglet noticed until they had reached the door. Pooh turned around and yelled, “We’ve got to hurry!” Eeyore replied back over the alarm. “I’m staying, Pooh! I’ll keep ‘em busy. Go on and get out of here!” Pooh yelled back, “We can all make it, Eeyore!” But his friend had made up his mind. “You’re not like the rest of us Pooh! You’re special! You need to be out there in the real world!” Pooh began tearing up too then turned and pushed on the handle to the exit door. Eeyore smiled as he planted his feet in a defensive pose, ready to fight for his friends to the end. “Thanks for being such a great pal” he whispered to himself. Piglet and Pooh were inside the dim room beyond the door and were faced with a tall ladder. Pooh let his tiny friend go first and promised to catch him if he slipped. They climbed and they climbed and they climbed some more. Then, they finally reached the top, where there was a large, round valve. Piglet sat on Pooh’s shoulder as he turned it as quickly as he could. After a few rotations, it swung upward and a golden light flooded in.
They climbed out of their prison and onto their first real piece of solid ground. They looked around and noticed they were standing in the middle of an intersection of roads, but no one was in sight. They could hear birds chirping and the light they had witnessed was the sun beginning to rise. The real sun. Pooh and his mechanical, yet, very real friend Piglet turned to one another and smiled. They hugged and wiped away their tears before running off to explore this strange, new world. And what happened next, you ask? Well... that's an entirely different story for an entirely different day.
Thanks for reading all the way to the end! :D If you liked this or have suggestions on what I could have improved, message me on social media at @lensmakesart or shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. If there is enough demand, I may consider fleshing this idea out in a full book or series. I post a new short story here every other month, so stay tuned! :)