Yea… It’d be a shame if anything were to happen to you…

As the Howler is about to bite into a live fish (wow, what a way to go, huh?) Joe gives a final round of “parental” advice to the tweens…

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But what is their plan, anyway?  To find and follow this unknown guy and see who he gives the artifact to?  Then what?  Surprise?!  We got you!?  We aren’t playing freeze tag, you know…  or maybe grab some footage on their “cameras?”

Wrong again!

The raptor did NOT come up empty-taloned!  But now has to face a howling monkey, which are never as “nice” as we want them to be…

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Because cell phones create a force field around otherwise vulnerable youth?  I think that’s a great and grave misconception, if ever there was one…  cue the kidnappers.  Two kids are about to go missing!

Rusty’s not very good at lying…

As doe-eyed, opossum-tailed Mara considers the reality that Joe is in on the bad stuff they are witnessing, Joe is clearly wondering what the heck these crazy kids are up to…

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So, as we are witnessing the very opposite of Speed, we are reminded that Rusty and Mara would like to be “dropped off” behind the bus for no apparent reason…

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…other than to test boundaries and see what trouble they can muster in a foreign land without the rule of law…

I am glad that they are whispering…

…and I am sure that Joe’s wheels are turning…  knowing that he will have to neutralize the building threat… I remind us all that this is a totally self-inflicted wound… the fact that he drove Rusty and Mara right to the scene of the crime and allowed them to witness the drop…

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Of course it’s Mara who is keeping them from showing their hand… but I keep wondering when that mane of hers is going to come to life.  It looks like a/an opossum strapped to the back of her head!

Riveting…

…with the stolen artifact being ferried on public transportation, and the Up in Smoke-mobile hot on it’s Trail (ha!) there’s no telling how long we might have to witness this ‘chase scene…’

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Careful with all the questions, (Rusty?) you’ll give yourself away…

I’ll give credit where it’s due, though… James Allen sure can draw a bus.  Even one that appears to be floating on a cloud.  I guess it has rained a while in the rainforest…

Well… who is Rusty’s bitch now??

As our friendly Toucan in the foreground displays its omnivorous traits (No more nuts… I need me a lizard!) Rusty (who has grown to be 6 feet tall) informs Joe that he (they?) want to go see Santa Poco (because they saw the guy with the stolen mask get on a bus headed that way?) before it gets “too dark.”

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Didn’t see that one one coming, huh?  Well, Joe, you can easily underestimate Rusty, as I did yesterday, so I guess we’ll have to see where this all goes…