BETTY WHITE WAS FLUNG FROM THE WRECKAGE. Though she tumbled end over end, she landed on her feet like a cat. Like a very old cat that had used up all of its nine lives and then borrowed lives from a couple other cats. Still, a cat, nonetheless.

While the vehicles went up again in another series of Bruckheimer explosions, she stared at her feet. Breathing in, then out, eyes on her fuzzy pink slippers. Regaining her center. Focusing her anger. You didn’t get to be Betty White’s age without learning some ninja Jedi type shit. Though she shouldn’t have been able to, she could still feel the life force of the Charmin Bears.

Slowly, she lifted her eyes toward the burning vehicles.

There were three bears, who seemed to be walking right out of the flames. A mama, a papa, and . . . well, you know. But these were no normal bears.

Their eyes glowed as red as the fire.

Behind them, all of that toilet paper was burning. Betty White felt her rage wanting to break free. She had not wiped her ass since all of this began, and that just wasn’t right. But she looked at them, a bunch of for-real bears, and had a moment of hesitation.

The bears appeared to be smoldering, coming closer, closer.

“You may think we are evil,” the father bear said.

“We are not,” added the mother bear.

The baby Charmin Bear said, “We are efficient.”

They moved quickly, circling around her.

Betty reached behind her but felt only air. A quick glance and she saw the bazooka about twenty feet from the wreckage. She wouldn’t be able to reach it in time. “Don’t do this,” she said, “Animals are better than people. We can talk about it.”

Papa Bear’s eyes burned brighter. He grinned an evil talking-bear grin just before his paws erupted with glowing balls of fire. A guttural heh-heh-heh rose from deep in his belly. He wound up, then pitched, one ball of fire after another.

Betty had seen better balls than this.

It had been a long time ago, and far, far away, since she had used them. But you didn’t get to be Betty White’s age without mastering a few different weapons. She whipped them both out, smoothly, without hesitation. The lightsaber blades flashed in the downtown street.

From somewhere, music swelled.

The first fireball bounced clumsily from the end of the left-hand saber, rolling down the street like a child’s toy.

The second one ricocheted back into the bear who had delivered it.

Youch!!” Papa Bear exclaimed.

While he had been hurling his balls, Mama Bear had slipped into Betty’s blind spot.

As the first lightsaber flashed, she was raising her clawed arms to strike from behind. But the second saber was already there. Betty flipped back with an effortless twist of the wrist, cutting off one of the paws. It made a wampa sound as it hit the scorched asphalt. Mama Bear pulled back a cauterized stump.

Damn!!” she exclaimed.

Betty crossed the sabers in an amazing show of finesse, then spun to face the smallest bear.

“Yeah, no,” Baby Bear said, and held up his hands.

Betty pointed one of the lightsabers at him, the other at Papa Bear.     

“Alright, you sons-of-bitches,” she snarled, but still in the sweetest way possible (because she was Betty White), “No more fuckin’ around. This shit stops now.”

When Idris arrived, just a short time later, the wreckage of the automobiles was still coughing smoke into the downtown sky. Betty and the bears, however, were nowhere to be found.   

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