Continued Exchange, Part 5 by stuffalso

The next morning, Rafiki sent Bambi to get more water from the gateway. He fully intended to do so but he had another mission. He stood waiting where he met Nala the day before. "I guess I'm early," he thought.

To pass time, he observed his surroundings. As he expected, there wasn't much to actually observe... Except for a mysterious deer.

"Wait, what?" Bambi did a double-take but nothing was there.

"Hi."

"Why me?!" Bambi turned quickly and came face-to-face with a very confused Nala. "...Hi?"

"Because you now where Simba is," said Nala blatantly.

"Excuse me?"

"'Why you?' You just asked that."

"Oh, right."

"If that's what you meant," finished Nala.

Bambi froze but relaxed when Nala smiled.

"If its important, it'll come up."

Bambi was relieved. He didn't know what it was himself.

"So, are we ready?" asked Nala

"Yes, we are," replied Bambi with would-be confidence. And with that, he led the way to the Oasis.


Simba didn't sleep well that night. Faline found him the next morning looking exhausted.

"Goodness," she said, "What happened to you?"

"Bad dream," replied Simba bluntly.

"Tell me about it," urged Faline. Simba silently shook his head. "Then let me guess. Family."

He remained still, for a moment before nodding.

"I see, say no more."

"I didn't say anything," he said dryly.

"You shouldn't stay like this forever," said Faline kindly, "it's not healthy."

"Just watch me!" Simba cut in.

At that moment, the wind picked up and he could've sworn he heard it say, "She's right." The wind seemed to gather into a small dust devil until a figure of a lion stood in front of him.

Simba recognized it immediately. "Stay away!" he said firmly.

"Who are you talking to?" asked Faline.

"Him," Simba had his eyes locked on the lion, "My father!"

Faline looked at him confused; she couldn't see anything. "Okay, I think you need some more sleep," she said.

Simba ignored her. Mufasa took a step forward. "I'm warning you!" The lion just kept approaching him. "Stop!" He was now a mere few steps before him. Simba finally broke his gaze, trembling. "It's too painful!"

"Simba," said Mufasa, "I'm truly sorry."

Simba slowly turned his gaze back to his father. "This wasn't the life you were meant to have," he continued.

Simba's face fell in shame. "It's all my fault," he said, "I was the one that..."

"Enough!" Simba looked up, "You may not be able to return to your previous life but that doesn't mean you lost everything."

"What?"

"You thought you lost everything... and everyone didn't you?"

"I mean, didn't I?" Mufasa stayed silent. "Alright then, who?" inquired Simba, "Who would possibly except me like this?"

"I would," interjected Faline, having only heard Simba's side of the conversation. Simba still didn't any notice.

The lion didn't respond right away. Instead, his form seemed to blow away with the wind. "Your role in the kingdom is not over," he finished cryptically, "Go to her." And he faded completely.

The wind seemed to be blowing in a specific direction. "Her?" Simba whispered. Without another word, he followed it.

"Simba?" called Faline, "Where are you going? What was that?" With no reply, she followed him, in hope for answers.


Rafiki mixed all sorts of things together, using the water as a base while Timon and Pumbaa watched on. Neither knew what to make of it and kept glancing at each other, hoping the other would say something.

At last, after what seemed like a long time, Rafiki was ready. "Would anyone like to go first?"

Timon tried to take an exaggerated step backwards and in doing so, leant forward.

"How nice of you to volunteer," said Rafiki innocently.

"Ah, what?" Timon quickly tried to backtrack. "No, no, no, I couldn't possibly deny..."

"Nonsense!" and Rafiki pushed him forward.

"Okay, fine!" Timon agreed reluctantly. "This won't kill me will it?"

"No."


"We're almost there." Bambi and Nala were almost at the far part of the Oasis. Nala was getting excited. Bambi could see it.

"This is the best bet we have," he thought, "I don't want to let her down."

At last they reached their destination. "Well?" asked Nala.

"We're here. This is it."

Nala's grin was fading. "It is?" This place didn't look like anything special. "Where is he? When will he get here?"

"Well, that's up to... something." He felt so stupid for saying that. He was sure Nala would turn around and go home, spitting at him as she went. She might very well have and yet, something held Nala there, staring into the beyond.


At the same time, Simba was still following the wind. Oddly enough, as soon as he reached where the gateway should've been, the wind dropped completely.

"Here?" he thought, "Why here?" It was an understandable reaction. After all, nothing was there. Sill, he was intrigued as to what could be happening on the other side. Something had to be because he was alone. He was alone, right?


"One. Patch. Of fur," grumbled Timon. The elixir had only grown out some fur on his lower back. "All of that, for one. Patch. Of fur." The was an awkward silence.

"Well," said Pumbaa at last, "At least we know that he can..."

"The only thing we know," interrupted Timon, his anger increasing, "is where to get a new hair style!" And he threw the elixir right at Rafiki. Rafiki dodged out of the way and it fell to the ground. Some of it landing on Pumbaa.

Timon grabbed Rafiki's staff and waved it around. "Look at me!" he mocked, "I'm the all-knowing monkey. I think Simba turned into some kind of imaginary animal but don't worry, I can fix it!"


Nala couldn't explain it but she felt like something was there. "Please," she said, "if he's here, please show me."


"Wait! Do that again." Timon had been waving the staff above the spilled elixir and Rafiki thought he had notice something.

"What you mean this?" And Timon continued to swing the staff. Sure enough, tiny bubbles appeared in the elixir.


Simba stood there at the empty gateway. "Ok," he said out loud, "Something is going on here and I'm not leaving until I know what it is."

Suddenly, a ripple began to appear in thin air.


On the other side, Bambi and Nala saw the same thing. The ripples grew and suddenly, the scenery began to change.


Simba had seen this once before but in reverse. The scenery was becoming clearer and clearer until...


Rafiki was growing excited. He quickly went over to the unused water. Bubbles were forming in that too.

"We can use this!" he said happily. He turned to Timon and Pumbaa, though they weren't paying full attention to him. A tingling sensation built on Timon's now-longer fur and migrated along his tail. Pumbaa's tail began to do the same. It became shorter while Timon's tail grew longer with tuft at the end. They soon sported a likeness, minus the fur color, of the other's tail. Air escaped their mouths but no sound came. Then, as quickly as it happened, their tails turned back to normal. Rafiki looked on with crossed arms and a smirk on his face.

"So," said Timon after recovering from his shock, "Simba's a deer, huh?"

Pumbaa fainted.

Continued Exchange, Part 5

stuffalso

15 July 2019 at 11:54:45 MDT

I honestly have little to say about this part.

Despite that, I hope you still enjoy.

The initial idea was by Sirzi (https://www.deviantart.com/sirzi)
The characters are owned by Disney

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