(We open in what appears to be misty woods, but is really cardboard and fabric trees with a grayish woods backdrop and machine-generated mist. Slip leads himself, Whitey, Bobby, Buddy, Junior, and Butch through the cotton "leaves.")

Bobby: I don't see any witches!

Buddy: I don't, either. All I see is trees and fog.

*Slip just grumbles as they walk along.*

(Butch trails behind them, playing a curved guitar.)

Bobby: Do you have to keep playing that thing? You might scare them off!

Butch: It helps me think.

Slip: If he wants ta play, let him play.

Butch: (He stops playing) Did you hear that?

Buddy: Hear what?

Bobby: (Looks up) I think I do.

Slip: Me too.

*Chuck steps out of the "greenery," smirking. He nods at them.*

Chuck: Fancy meeting all of you out here.

*Slip growls.*

Bobby: Lord Charles. I'm assuming you're not out here for a quiet stroll through the woods.

Chuck: You would assume correctly.

Buddy: (He pulls out his sword) I don't want to hurt you, Lord Charles, but if you do anything to any of us...

Butch: Where's Jane?

Chuck: She's safe.

Slip: He asked where she is.

Chuck: Around.

Butch: Where around?

Chuck: Not in the immediate vicinity.

Butch: Then bring her here.

Chuck: No.

(Suddenly, the mist seems to part...revealing Sheila and Zelda.)

Bobby: The Sorceress..es. (Mutters to Slip) What happened to Rachel? I thought she was the Sorceress!

Slip: *His eyes narrows; mutters* I dunno, aní I don't like it. We ain't seen Rachel since before this started.

Zelda: Welcome, gentlemen.

Butch: Where's Jane and all those missing girls?

Sheila: (Pats Butch's head) How adorable. You brought all these lovely children for us. They're very sweet, but I was hoping for men.

Butch: (Slaps Sheila's hand away) I am a man!

Bobby: Who are you callin' a kid?

Slip: Lemme at her!

*Whitey latches on Slip and sort of attempts to hold him back.*

Chuck: *Folds his arms* It wasn't quite planned this way, but I think we can make the best of this.

Sheila: Yes, we can. (She rubs Buddy's arm) A bit slender, but we can fatten you up. ;)

Buddy: I don't want to be fattened!

Zelda: *Sidles up to Junior* Hi, cutie.

*Zelda takes Juniors arm.*

Slip: Ya lured us here.

Sheila: Quite. (Sigh) But you disappoint me. I was hoping for some real men. (Strokes Buddy's head) Oh, well. These will have to do.

Buddy: No! I will not do!

Butch: Let them go! (He tries to lunge for Zelda, but Chuck blocks him)

Chuck: Not so fast, friend.

Butch: I'm not going to let those witches hurt them!

Chuck: They won't get hurt.

Butch: They will if they get to them! They perform horrible experiements on young men!

Chuck: *Sarcastically* They do!?

Butch: Why have you joined them?

Chuck: *Shrugs* Why not?

Butch: Because they're evil! That's why not!

Chuck: *Smirks* So am I, now.

Butch: But...but you're not! You can't be! You're one of the king's advisors!

Chuck: I used to be, until I found something I'm better at.

Butch: How could you be better at hurting people?

Chuck: *Grabs Butch's arm* You tell me.

Butch: NO! (He pushes Chuck off of him) I'm not some toy for your mistress' amusement! (Mutters to Chuck) And why are there two Sorceresses out here? Where's Rachel?

Chuck: *Smirks* Oh, she's safe. *grabs his arm again, tightly* No, but I'd like a toy to play with.

Butch: Well, I'm not it! (He shoves Chuck away with all his might)

*Chuck reaches around his back and pulls something from under his cape. He produces a short stick. He presses a button, and it suddenly becomes about three feet long. He swings the staff at Butch.*

Butch: (Narrows his eyes) Two can play at that game! (Pulls out his own oak staff. The two duel furiously)

Butch: (He finally ducks away from Chuck) I can't hurt you like that. (He picks up his guitar) Maybe you'd rather hear a song? (He starts to play)

*Chuck's eyes widen. He drops his staff and clamps his hands over his ears, wincing deeply.*

Sheila: (She winces as well) We must leave this place and that music! (Grabs Buddy's arm) Charles, the exit spell!

*Zelda follows suit, covering her ears as well. Chuck keeps one ear covered and waves his free hand. Smoke comes up from the "ground" and sparkles fall, covering them as they head off stage.*

Butch: (Runs to Slip and Bobby) I'm sorry, your lordship. I didn't know they'd make such an exit!

Bobby: Now we have to rescue those damsels and our comrades!

Slip: *Sighs* You couldn't help it. *pauses* They had an interestin' reaction to yer music, kid.

Bobby: (Nods) It seems to weaken them.

Butch: (Nods) I think...it's the love. I play because I love to play, and it's reflected in my music. They can't stand love.

Slip: *Snaps his fingers* That explains a lot.

Butch: (Gulps) I hope so. I miss her so!

Slip: Lets continue on, men.

*We switch from the stage to a room upstairs. It appears the room was recently cleaned, although it still holds some items being stored in the theatre. Jane lays on a padded bench.*

Sheila: (She makes her way in) We'll have to keep the others from finding this place. We already can't use the basement.

Zelda: *Walks in next* They're too darn nosy.

Sheila: (As Chuck walks in) Isn't there some way we can deal with your brother and his meddling friends?

Chuck: We've already tried several times. *shrugs*

Sheila: (She sits by Jane) This one is the sweetheart of your best friend, isn't she?

Chuck: *Nods once* She is.

Sheila: Perhaps the best course of action with this one would not be to attack her body, but her mind. She's the little ambitious one, right? The little secretary.

Sheila: (As Jane stirs, she whispers in her ear) No, dear. Don't stir. Don't move. You're under our control now, and you'll do as we say. (Looks at Chuck) As your master says. (She strokes the back of her neck, making the girl whimper)

Chuck: *Shrugs* You're in charge, milady.

Sheila: (Hands him silk cords) Bind her legs. I'll do her arms. You can blindfold and gag her, too. (She ties her arms and torso tightly)

*Chuck ties her up with his cords.*

Sheila: I'll find a safe place for the girl. You go deal with the others.

(She throws a blanket over Jane as Chuck heads out...and smirks as Jane's form vanishes under the blanket.)

(Cut to the roof. Slip is looking around, frowning.)

Slip: Darn it! Where is that kid? One of these days, I'm gonna mash his teeth in.

Chuck: *His voice seems to come from nowhere* Should I be afraid?

Slip: (Holds up his fist) After what you've done to Sally, Jane, and Butch, among others? Yeah, you should definitively be afraid.

Slip: I'm gonna mash you into meatloaf if you don't start thinkin' straight.

Chuck: You don't even know where I am.

Slip: Of course, I do! You're on the roof wit' me!

Chuck: Where on the roof?

Slip: Chuck, you come out here and fight like a man! Quit this hidin' in the shadows stuff!

Chuck: Why? I like it.

Slip: Well, I don't like it. I know you don't like to be in the spotlight, but this is goin' a little too far!

Chuck: You think so, huh? You who loves the spotlight.

Slip: So I like gettin' attention. What's that to ya?

Chuck: You're always trying to shove it on me.

Slip: I don't shove nuthin' on nobody!

*Chuck laughs.*

Slip: What's so funny, kid?

Chuck: *Still laughing* That you actually think you shove things on people!

Slip: I like to lead. I'm a good leader. I don't see you leadin' nuthin'.

Chuck: You like to push, you like to force, you like to get your own way! *steps out of the shadows behind Slip*

Slip: So I like things my own way! I know how they should go! (He swerves around) Oh, there ya are! Decided to quit hidin' and fight?

Chuck: I'm tired of you always acting like you're the big shot. You think you know everything, but you don't. *steps up to Slip* So you're going to punch me because I don't think you're the all powerful Slip, hm?

Slip: No, I'm going to hit you to knock some sense into your head and bring back my little brother.

Chuck: You mean the little brother than follows you around and does what you tell him to? The one who can't think for himself because big brother Slip does it for him? Well, here I am! Knock some sense into me and make yourself feel better!

Slip: No, I mean the sweet guy who never says a really harsh word to anyone. The one who helps out his friends. The one who is a great writer. The one who adores his girlfriend.

Chuck: *Shakes his head* No, Slip, you want the guy you can push around.

Slip: No. I want my little brother back. So does Butch. What about him? And Rachel?

Chuck: No.

Slip: What about Butch? Do ya hate him, too? He ain't never done nuthin' to ya.

Chuck: No, he hasn't. I don't know where you got "hate" from.

Slip: 'Cause you're actin' like ya hate everyone. Sach an' Whitey are terrified of ya!

Chuck: Those two are terrified of everything.

Slip: But they ain't never been scared of you before. They both think of you as their little brother...and considerin' how many brothers Sach has, that's sayin' a lot.

Chuck: I know what you're trying to do, Slip. *shakes his head* It won't work.

Slip: It would if you'd just start fightin' whatever those chicks did to ya. My brother is in there. I know it.

Chuck: It won't.

Slip: (Takes Chuck's shoulders) Come on, man. Fight her. You can do it. I saw ya do it earlier.

Chuck: *shakes Slip off* Get off me.

Slip: Chuck, if you can hear me, I want you to try to fight this. Fight it as hard as you can!

Chuck: He can't hear you.

Slip: What have you done with him?

Chuck: He's where he won't be bothered.

Slip: Yeah, well, if you don't let me bother him, I'm gonna bother the hell outta you.

Chuck: Go ahead, but you can't get him out.

(Slip hits Chuck as hard as he can in the chin.)

*Chuck staggers backwards and stumbles, but he's still conscious.*

Slip: Chuck, I don't want to hurt you...wherever you are in there. I just want you to wake up.

Chuck: He's...not gonna...wake up...like that...

Slip: Come on, Chuckie. Come out. Beat this guy. I know you can.

Chuck: *Growls* No!

(Slip hits him again, this time in the gut.)

*Chuck doubles over with a loud "oof!" as all his air leaves him. He gasps & coughs, trying to regain a breath.*

Slip: Gettin' the picture now?

*Chuck ignores him, trying to take a breath.*

Slip: (Grabs his shoulders and shakes them) Kid, you're a Mahoney. I know you can get through this. You're tougher than you think.

*Chuck is still coughing. He doesn't look at Slip.*

Chuck: *still gasping* Piss...off...

Slip: I'm only leavin' 'cause we've gotta go back onstage in a few minutes. That don't mean I'm givin' up on you. You're in there, Chuck. I know you are.

Chuck: *Coughs* Youíre soft.

Slip: Aní you're lettin' those bitches get to your brain.

*Chuck regards Slip as a familiar look crosses his eyes. Chuck winces, as if trying to clear it.*

Slip: Chuckie?

Chuck: *Groans* No... *puts a hand to his head* Help, Slip...

Slip: Chuckie, fight it! Fight hard! I know ya can! Beat that jerk in there to a pulp!

Chuck: Can't... *gasps and starts coughing again*

Slip: Chuckie, please! I never thought I'd say this, but do ya want me to hit ya again? :O

Chuck: *Gasps again and blurts out* Do it now!

(Slip hits him in the gut again.)

*Chuck falls to his knees, gasping for air again.*

Chuck: *Between gasps* Do it...again...harder...

(Slip does, though he looks like it hurts him as much as Chuck.)

*Chuck ends up curled on the floor, wincing something awful. His whole body shakes as he coughs and gasps. Despite the need for air, there's a clear look of recognition in Chuck's eyes.*

Slip: (He drops to his knees; takes his brother's shoulders) Chuck? Did I hurt anythin' important?

Chuck: *Looks up at Slip* Rachel... *starts coughing and wincing all over again, causing his whole body to shake.*

Slip: Yeah?

Chuck: *Gasps* Need...her... *coughs hard*

Slip: Do you know where she is?

*Chuck managed to shake his head between coughing spasms.*

Slip: Then we'll keep lookin' for her, and for Jane and the others, too. Ain't there any way I can keep ya...well, yourself...before we find her?

Chuck: Can't... *gasps* too strong...

Slip: I'd hit ya again, but I'm afraid I'll bust your ribs, an' we're gonna need ya in the show.

Chuck: *Takes short, labored breaths* It's...okay...don't...worry...get me...inside... before...he...wakes up...

Slip: All right. (He helps Chuck to his feet and puts his arm around him) Come on. Do ya wanna get a drink or somethin' before we go back on?

Chuck: *Nods* Yeah... please... *pauses to take a few short breaths* Sorry...Slip...

Slip: That's ok, kid. Let's just get you inside. (He leads Chuck back off the roof as we fade out)