(WARNING: this may be one of my darker series, though it is still set in the Betwixt multiverse - consider it an alternate universe of sorts that explores the experiences of various Toons that undergo the process of "vanishing" : it features alternate takes on Betwixt, Suzie, Baby and the Magical Unicorn crew as well as some of my own take on infamous cartoon theories (altered to avoid copyright complications) )
In a dark room a thin figure dressed in a shroud sat upon a window sill covered in dust, staring out at a sky illuminated by a silver moon - the figure remained still as their shroud fell from their face, revealing one large ear that stuck out and another equally large ear that bent slightly.
The figure eventually stirred, looking down a small doll held in gloved hands - the doll resembling a cartoon rabbit dressed in the style of a 1920s drifter, the rabbit having the same ear style as the shrouded figure.
"..Betwixt?" a small voice called out from the shadows, revealing another shrouded figure - who stepped out into the centre of the room and revealed their own face: which resembled a cartoon feline, devoid of color as if belonging in the early era of cartoons.
"How did this happen, Suzie? where did we go wrong?" the rabbit asked, looking to the doll in his hands before glancing around at the room - shattered glass showing what was once an ornate mirror, a bed torn to shreds and an old-fashioned television set with a mallet still smashed into the screen.
"..I.. I don't know.." the feline admitted, looking around for herself.
"So many Toons just accept it.. never crosses their mind to fight back.." the rabbit said, tossing the doll down at the feline's feet as he stood up and made his way towards the broken television.
"..with Baby and the Council everyone is scared of going against the system.. it doesn't mean they don't try and fight.. this however.. was something entirely different.." the feline began, stopping as the rabbit pulled the mallet from the broken television and turned around to face her.
"This was madness, Suzie.. I should know.. soon Baby and the Council will come over, they'll be wanting answers.. so.. what are we going to tell them?" Betwixt said, twisting his arm as the mallet disappears in a puff of dark smoke.
The feline thinks for a moment, looking down at the doll, then up to the rabbit : "..I guess we begin at the start..".
(Three months previously..)
It was a quiet afternoon in the magical world of Imaginia and three cartoon unicorns of a "cutsey" design played in a field - they lacked any color despite being a more modern-style of Toon: being black and white much like the world around them yet they seemed to be completely oblivious to this fact as they enjoyed their game, acting much like children as they enjoyed the rays of the sun above, even if said sun did little to change the black and white existence of those below.
As the three unicorns played a fourth stood by the side of the field and conversed with a figure resembling a cartoon human infant dressed in a trenchcoat and fedora - the infant was accompanied by two large cartoon gorillas dressed in the style of stereotypical government agents, complete with sunglasses and black suits.
"So.. you guys are keeping up with demand?" the infant asked, studying a notepad as the unicorn nodded in response.
"Quite, at first the projectors caused a bit of a stir.. we hadn't seen one in quite a while but after the initial shock we got things back to normal.." the unicorn said.
"Good.. fleshies don't like Toons knowing too much, acting "natural" is the best way to keep ratings - you guys are lucky.. few Toons manage to get a revival.. you were in danger of fading away.." the infant replied, scribbling something on the notepad.
"Please.. don't remind me.." the unicorn said, looking around slightly.
"Yeah.. well.. good work, I'll be keeping check on you guys from now on.. we Toons got to stick together after all.. you just keep the act up.. fleshies love that.." the infant replied, turning as he and his companions left via a strange portal that opened like a zipper, then closed just as oddly - ending with an audible pop.
As the infant left the unicorn glanced over at the other three, who continued playing - yet her gaze soon went to a nearby projector that observed the field from a distance , the lone unicorn frowning slightly as she thought to herself:
<<..yeah.. good work girls.. just keep playing.. they like that.. smile and laugh.. doesn't matter if you mean it.. we don't really get to be happy - it's just a show.. so by all means play your parts.. someone has to run things around here, after all..>>
Turning away the lone unicorn made her way to a small tower and closed the door behind herself, closing out the rest of the world as the laughter of the others faded away behind stone walls..