Chapter 34 - Much deserved news
Tani walked over to her bed with Crunch's hand held tightly in her grasp. She sat down and so did Crunch. Tani looked up at Crunch, he could tell she was extremely nervous. "...Crunch. There's... something you should know..." Tani said, she took breathed in heavily. Crunch was very worried about how Tani was feeling, "Please tell me... I know you've been hiding something, but I'm just not sure what it is... I just, hope it's nothing bad. That's all...." "I'm not sure if you'd think it's bad.... but I have to tell you anyway. I can't hide it for much longer" said Tani, her heart was beating faster and faster. Crunch stared at Tani more and more "What is it....?" Tani looked up at Crunch again, then quickly turned away "We're having a baby...." she told him, and tightly closed her eyes and lowered her head. Crunch's expression changed from worried to surprised. His eyes widened, "... Are you... are you sure...?" he asked, "Yes... I am. I'm so sorry! This is all my fault! I can't believe how stupid I was! I understand if you're angry or shocked, but I am sorry... if you are" Tani said, and carried on looking down, Crunch put his palm on Tani's hand, he lowered his muzzle down to Tani's level and nuzzled her slightly to get her to look back at him. Tani looked at Crunch with a worried expression "I hope you're not angry..." "Why are you being so down about this? Of course I'm not angry! This is the greatest news I've ever received in my life..." Crunch told her, she changed her expression "You're... you're ok with this?" "Yes of course! This news makes me feel so happy... I hope you are too...." Tani soon smiled, "If you're happy... then I am too!" She hugged Crunch tightly while he did in return "I've always wanted to know what it's like to be a father... especially after seeing Pinstripe with his son... I'm sure we'll make good parents!" "Oh Crunch, you don't realize how much happier I feel now. I was so worried sick of what you'd think!" Tani said happily, they both looked at each other face to face, "So... this is why you've been acting strange lately? Like... sleeping more, being more aggressive than usual and eating more than me and all that other stuff?" Crunch asked, and smirked slightly "Heh yeah, that's why I've been doing those things. I'm just happy you're alright with it... now I wont be worrying so much" Tani said, and smiled more at Crunch, "I'm glad you told me, no wonder we have to tell everyone..." Tani then took off her winter jacket, and looked down at her belly, "It wont be too long until the baby comes too... I think" Crunch looked down with interest "Wow this makes me excited, I really cant wait to see what he or she looks like...".
A month later... the calmness in their home wasn't so calm at all...
"ARRRGGHHHH!" Tani screamed while in her room, she had a blanket over her body... and was clearly in labor! Crystal and Crunch were panicking in the lounge, "You have to go and help her!!!" Crystal told Crunch, she was scared of the situation but not near as fearful as Crunch "But! But I don't know what to do!!!" Crunch yelled, "ARGH CRUNCH HELP!!!" Tani cried more, Crunch was far too freaked out to even take a step into the room, "Crunch you HAVE to go in there NOW!" Crystal shouted "No I can't, I can't!" then Crystal pushed Crunch into the doorway, Crunch clung to the sides of the door "Ahh what are you doing!? I cant do this!!" he gasped, Crystal tried pushing her big brother through the door but he had a strong grip on the sides, Tani took a look at the doorway, she screwed her face up even more "CRUNCH... IF YOU DON'T GET YOUR ASS IN HERE RIGHT NOW... I'LL... I'LL KICK YOUR ASS!" Tani screamed in fury, this made Crunch frightened and he almost lost his grip "Crunch just hurry up and get in there! She needs you more than ever!" Crystal told her brother, as she tried harder to push in into the room "But I'm not a doctor! I don't know what I do, I cant do it, I cant!!!" but Crystal couldn't take it anymore, she kicked Crunch as hard as she could and he finally lost his grip and fell backwards into the room. Crystal quickly shut the door. There was a moment of silence, Crunch got up off the floor and stood up... he looked over at Tani and he was still slightly frightened of the situation. Tani had now calmed and he walked over to the bedside. He kneeled down beside her "I'm sorry Tani... I was too freaked out, but what... what should I do now? I honestly... don't know..." Tani opened her eyes and looked at him "It's... it's alright Crunch, I understand. All you need to do is be there for me..." Crunch moved closer to Tani near the bedside to try and comfort her, she moved her head to Crunch's direction and grabbed hold of his left hand. Both marsupials closed their eyes tightly, Tani squeezed Crunch's hand tightly...
Moments later, Tani had stopped moving and breathing heavily. She slowly opened her eyes, and released Crunch's hand from her grasp, "It's finally over..." Crunch opened his eyes too, he looked at Tani "it is...?" Tani nodded and smiled slightly... then closed her eyes again. Soon faint squeaking sounds were heard, it caught Crunch's attention and he raised his head. He stood up slightly, and stared over at the blanket... he saw a small figure crawling under the blanket. Crunch walked over steadily to the end of the bed, he couldn't wait to see her or him... but was nervous at the same time. He kneeled down and heard the squeaks again, he breathed in then out slowly and placed both his hands under the blanket gently... he slowly pulled out his hands and was soon face to face with his new born baby. Crunch looked at the newborn with joy, it was a female. So small that she could just fit into Crunch's palms.
Her eyes were still closed but she had very short fur, the same coloration as Tani's but also, had some burgundy fur on her back and the top of her head, and small floppy ears. Crunch couldn't stop smiling and staring at her, He looked over at Tani... who looked tired. Crunch walked over to Tani and she soon opened her eyes to look up at him "Is... our baby... alright?" She asked calmly, Crunch sat on the side of the bed next to Tani and turned to lay down beside her. Tani lifted herself to take a look, Crunch lowered their child down and Tani looked and smiled as she looked "Aww wow... she's beautiful" "I know... I'm just so lost for words. Best gift we could ever have..." said Crunch, he handed the baby over to Tani. She cuddled her up and snuggled herself against Crunch, he placed his arms around Tani and nuzzled against her... she asked "So... you got a name in mind...?" she asked, while holding the bandiger pup close, "I was thinking of... of the name Tasha. You like the sound of that?" asked Crunch "It's perfect..." replied Tani in a calm voice, the two nuzzled again and watched over Tasha for so long.
They were both thrilled with parenthood... but that was only the beginning of it. But it was an end to fighting evil for years to come. Crunch had finally got what he wanted, even though Dr Cortex was not truly gone... but he didn't mind much at this stage. He was too overjoyed with having Tasha in his life, and being free with Tani and not worrying about hiding their secret anymore. Crunch finally had a real chance to settle down with his life, and not worry so much about his future...
Finally living peacefully with his partner and daughter, he spends most of his time caring for Tasha and training too of course. He decided to take a break from fighting evil for a few years at least, but he become rather tempted to at least have some fights now and then and sometimes liked to wrestle with the giant polar bears or fight with Tiny if he caught him lurking around his side of the island, or any other intruders for that matter. He had become rather territorial of his side of the island. When Tasha got older, she got closer to her father and even showed signs of wanting to learn how to fight. As soon as she was able to walk steadily, Crunch slowly started to train her since she kept nagging him to do so, but she often was clumsy and clearly not ready at such a young age.
Crash is probably the only guy not to have such dramatic changes. He carried on resting, eating wumpa fruit, and going on quests to annoy the baddies when he gets bored. He always awaited Cortex's next World Domination strike... and wonders if he'd ever strike again at all...? Who knows. But he sure was itching for another fight against true evil though. He was also surprised when he found out Tani and Crunch were together, AND were having a child. He stood there for hours smiling about it, until Tani got irritated with the constant grinning and knocked his lights out. Though after a few more months he found out Tawna had a child and that Tawna said it's his son... Crash tried hard to get others to know what he is not the father, most believed him though. Luckily.
Coco had soon entered adulthood, and was even more intelligent than ever. She was well known on the internet for her dating services, but the unsuspecting humans never knew an evolved animal was in charge of it. Coco was also an excellent babysitter for Tasha, though she started to fear Tasha a little when she started teething! Coco, like her brother... also wondered if Dr Cortex would ever return. It had been a long time since they've seen him. But she enjoyed the peace, and tried to perfect her karate skills in her spare time as well.
Crystal still lived with her brother and Tani, and seemed to fit in rather well. She helped out with looking after Tasha, making a good aunt. She also wanted to try and get to know her half sister Tawna as well, though they have almost nothing in common there is one thing they both had in common... they both fear spiders! She also was the first to believe Tawna has truthfully changed after giving birth to Collide. Possibly because Crystal wasn't around when Tawna did those bad deeds. However, Crystal also liked to play the guitar sometimes for entertainment in the tree house, and was quite good at it.
Tani now seemed far less aggressive than usual, though that was only when Tasha was in her sight! When Tasha was half a year old, she started to try and get back into her toned down body shape again. With the help of Crunch of course. Like Crunch, Tani also decided to relax and not fight against evil for a while. She just wanted to spend time with her child and concentrate on raising her, she often worried for Tasha's safety though when she started to show signs of wanting to fight, this made Tani act like and overprotective mother! Tani was also cautious when Coco and Crash babysat Tasha for the first time...
He carried on living his life on the east side of X.Treme Island. He got along very well with Koala Kong and the other minions who inhabited that side of the Island. Though he sometimes tried to visit Tani, but Crunch and him often got into vicious fights after Tiny tries entering through Crunch's territory! Luckily Tani usually made it in time to break the two brutes up before they badly hurt each other. Tiny also liked to race with Joe and the other minions on the kart racing track.
After Dr Cortex was exiled from the Islands along with his Ice berg lab... Kong did not get what he wanted. Cortex had basically lied. This made Kong unhappy but he still had plenty of beer at his house on the east side of X.Treme island. He often had parties with Moe and Dingodile, and they even went to the Moulin Cortex sometimes for fun. He also carried on his rock throwing hobby for amusement when things got boring.
Moe had found it rather enjoyable with more minions around, though Koala Kong had gotten him into a bad habit of drinking beer! But he also liked to race in karts against his brother Joe and other challenging anthros from nearby. He still trained sometimes with his brother, to make sure he doesn't lose his samurai spirit! Though he still sometimes mistaken Crunch as Crash, even though they look nothing alike.
Joe, the smarter twin of the duo... he still was in charge of the successful kart racing track on the east side of X.Treme island. Crunch and his family even sometimes visited to have races with him and the other minions. Even the cheeky Crash bandicoot sometimes came for fun, to annoy in the races. Joe was living a good life, he didn't drink any alcohol like his brother though. He preferred to perfect his samurai moves instead, though Moe sometimes joined in the training when sober. Joe was also the sober driver for his brother and friends.
Dingodile spent most his time traveling around the seas on his ice berg and speedboat. But he often visited Koala Kong, Tiny and his other friends at X.Treme island or Cortex Castle for company... he especially liked to visit the Moulin Cortex! Though one day he saw love at first sight, who was the one and only... Vin Vixen! But it seemed she was only using him to get at his expensive goods... but Dingodile refuses to believe that! Even after discovering all his money and red gem were missing. Dingodile also enjoyed reading and playing cards with his mates.
Pinstripe got lucky, after Dr Cortex had been kicked out of the area... he actually did get what Cortex promised him... a new house and a load of weapons too. Except the house was simply on Cortex Castle Island... which did bother Pinstripe when he found out, but it was better than nothing. He spends a lot of his time just hanging with his gangster friends, teaching his son Tommy tricks with his guns, and getting up to no good... in general.
Tiffany, still living with Pinstripe and the other potoroos... she still was happy with her partnership with Pinstripe. She carried on teaching her son the ways she's been taught, and often worried about him using Pinstripes guns! Tiffany still liked to visit Tani, and see Tasha as well. Giving her memories of when Tommy was young.
Tommy was now a kid, looked the age of a seven year old but wasn't that old just yet. He was starting to get more and more like his father, and always begged if he could use his guns! Pinstripe did let him, but under strict supervision. Tommy also sometimes got a bit lonely, since there were no other anthros of his age group, but he usually got along with Siegdog due to Siegs extreme immaturity.
Siegdog was now a full grown adult... but definitely did not act it! Though he usually found entertainment in the Castle, and often bothered everyone with his horrid rap songs and dances. He also challenged Crash bandicoot to a few dance competitions too. Though they were on different sides, they both got along well and both shared similar stupidity similarities. But Crash definitely kicked his butt in the competitions!
Blaze was still the same, still hung around with the other potoroos and put up with his brothers antics. He was still into his digital gadgets, especially his pocket PC. He also was interested with the online dating service and wondered who had control over it... but he thought he shouldn't bother with it, since it'll most possibly be a human controlling it anyway.
Ah the little menace. He still got up to no good and snuck around Crunch and Tani's home, but he was rather surprised to see that they had a little child in the house. He decided not to cause so much stress for the time being. He also liked to visit the other anthros on the other side of the island, and he continued trying to teach Tiny tiger how to read as well (...o_O).
Jaseo was bored with his life after being defeated by Crash in the tag team battle involving Crunch and Derick in this story. He was sick of being at the Academy of Evil and decided to head to Cortex Castle Island to try and get a job at the Moulin Cortex. He got a job as a singer there, finally a dream come true for him! Though he got far more tomatoes thrown at him than cash though.
Derick seemed to be a constant visitor to the Moulin Cortex, even before fighting Crunch (and Crash) for the second time in this story, and even still believed he had a chance with Tani! Around four months after Crimzon was defeated... he finally decided to dare to take a step into the west side of X.Treme Island... He wanted to try and get another chance with Tani until... he saw a 'shocking' sight. He watched from the bushes and saw both Crunch and Tani at the beach enjoying themselves, and also little Tasha playing in the sand. He knew it was obviously their daughter. He was blank for several minutes, then he turned away and left the island forever. He never ever bothered Crunch again, nor Tani. He got depressed for a short while and headed back to the Academy to carry on working under Amberlies commands.
She didn't spend too much time at the Moulin Cortex... she was only there for around three months, because she had discovered that.. like Tani, that she is pregnant as well! This left Tawna frightened, she honestly didn't know who the father was... she simply did not remember (was possibly drunk when 'it' happened). Since her baby made her look 'fat' she was immediately kicked out of the Moulin Cortex. She tried to beg her half brother Crunch if she could live with them again... but Crunch refused and gave her a small home of her own somewhere in the forest on X.Treme Island instead. She ended up on her own and had the baby on her own. She named him Collide, because she wanted to believe Crash was the father... Tawna had changed a lot after he was born, and became more mature and well behaved, and tried so hard to earn back Crunch's trust and try to get to know Crystal as well... but Collide was allowed to play with Tasha as they got older, and they became great pals (cousins).
Midelene still carried on working for Madame Amberly, but she fitted in well with the students at the school. She still carried on spying around the school and even sometimes flew off furtherer to see other places to spy upon. She was curious to find out about and get to know the other Evolved animals that Cortex and Brio had created... things were rather lonely at the Academy, due to the lack of evolved animals there.
Nina still remained as one of the top students at the school, though she missed having Crystal around for company. She become more and more talented with her steel trap hands though, but she never lost her love for animals. She wanted to one day become a zoologist, though most animals will fear her grasp of steel hands... she had to admit she was missing her uncle Neo Cortex too, even though he was much different from her. But he is her last known Cortex relation after all.
Still continuing her job as the headmaster at the Academy of Evil, she had stopped with the evolution and dark spirit projects due to the fact that her mega computer and Digital Evolvo-ray were long gone. She was still thankful for Crunch's actions, and didn't dare to mess with him or Crash for that matter, ever again. She'd rather get revenge on Neo Cortex for missing his detention sessions!
Also know as 'The Gold Digger', Vin was originally one of Dr Cortex's early creations from 1995, but was sent to the Academy of Evil for being too much of an innocent 'sweetheart'. She often used her charms and good looks to trick small minded males into falling in love with her, so she could steal anything valuable off them... like she did with poor Dingodile and a few other unsuspecting males. She was rather embarrassed with what Crunch did to her, but she soon got over it and her burnt tail fur grew back. She spends most of her life in secretary... and likes to stare at her collection of valuable items.
The young Komodo dragon was now a preteen, and still lived with her 'Dad' N.Gin on his Rocket Ship. She often helps him with building robots and mech's, and she even builds her own too. She also missed seeing the other anthros such as Crunch and Tani. But N.Gin would someday take a visit to X.Treme Island...
N.Gin still drove his large rocket loaded ship through the seas, like he always wanted to. He wondered where Dr Cortex had gone, he hadn't seen the mad man in years now. But he was doing good with his life, he even visited Cortex Castle Island to push Dr N.Brio around to evolve some more animals, to help with keeping his rocket ship in shape. He also evolved a walrus named Rusty to help with cooking "Yummy, fresh meat for my pot!".
Dr Nefarious Tropy:
After the harsh fight with Crunch, Tropy was left without his left arm... but he survived (no worries fangirls!). He managed to get a new robotic arm to replace it, and he also got brand new armor... which is more protective and more of a golden colour on most parts. His new robotic arm was rather large compared with his right arm but he found it to be quite useful at times... and now he was even with Crunch. Irony anyone?
Dr Nitrus Brio:
After finding out Dr Cortex was gone once again, Dr Brio rejoiced and gained control over the castle once again! He also evolved a few more anthros to live around the islands such as Ernest Emu and over various creatures, since he didn't have much else to do at all... He also got bossed around by N.Gin sometimes to evolve some minions for himself, to help with looking after his ship. Of course, Brio being the push-over... obviously did as he was told.
Dr Neo Cortex:
Though some of the anthros thought Cortex had finally reached his demise... since most food products have a tag saying 'Do not refreeze'... Cortex was simply frozen once again, frozen just like before with Uka uka. The doctor pretty much was frozen for even longer, penguins still continued to stare at the strange looking popsicle as they passed by. And wondered if it'll ever move again...?
Not much to mention about this mask... he was still frozen in the Ice berg, since Dr Cortex was too afraid to defrost him when he was free from the chill. But after Cortex was frozen again, Uka uka just remained inside the thick ice... frozen along with Cortex for years to come.
The Elementals were doing fine with Crunch as their new guardian, to help keep them out of danger and to stop them from causing such a nuisance around the world as well. They were often let out of their crystal shards for company at home, and they sometimes came in handy. Though they still carried on with their bickering if left out for too long, and that's when they'd get imprisoned for another day!
Aku aku was pleased with how everyone was doing around the three islands. He was just pleased that everyone was enjoying themselves most of the time, and got along well (most of the time anyway). Without Cortex around, things sure were different. And he was still pleased with how Crunch kept the elementals in order too, without making them cause such havoc as they usually would. Though Aku aku still wondered if Dr Cortex and Uka uka would ever return anytime soon...? Only time could well.
So from now on... things were looking bright, Crunch had finally got what he deserved and so did most of the other evolved animals too. He pretty much lived a peaceful life with his family for years to come. Two years after Tasha was born, him and Tani decided Tasha needed another brother or sister too... but they ended up having both instead! What else could happen from now on...? It sure was a time for Crunch to relax though, especially after living a life like his. That's for sure...