S1E12.4: Original Drama "Japari Bun Hunt"
|Japari Bun Hunt|
Japari Bun Hunt is an original audio drama included on the character song album Japari Café. The drama is centered on the members of PPP, as they search for Japari Buns to give to Kaban in preparation for her upcoming journey by sea.
It takes place during the one month gap between the defeat of the Black Cerulean and the party at the end of Episode 12 - Amusement Park. The drama is considered canon to the anime, and is referred to as "Episode 12.4" on occasion, due to a statement on the CD's jewel case, despite the lack of episodes 12.2 or 12.3 to fill the gap.
The story begins with Margay calling the members of PPP over to assist her with a request. Emperor is confused, as she believed it was their day off, but Margay explains that the professor asked the group for a favor. She goes on to tell the group that they need to prepare a large amount of Japari Buns - more than 200. Gean asks if this request happens to be for Kaban's journey, which prompts an even more confused Emperor to mention that usually, Boss hands out food. Princess points out that not only is Kaban present, but Serval will likely be following her as well. Rocker morbidly points out how Kaban would die without food, and the penguins then agree to Margay's request to gather 200 Japari Buns.
Princess is, understandably, somewhat overwhelmed by the large amount of Japari Buns they will have to gather. Rocker notes how Lucky Beasts only gives them buns when they need them, not in excess, and only as many as they need. Emperor asks Princess if there's anywhere on the island where they could find many Buns, and in response Princess mentions rumors of a place where the Lucky Beasts produce all of the Japari Buns. Gean chimes in saying she has heard the same, but notes that no one has ever seen it before. Margay decides, while doing a voice impression of the owl, that this means that the Professor wants the group to go and search for this place. Rocker feels as if the librarians are asking them to retrieve their food for them, and Emperor asks if anyone knows where it is. Margay continues her voice impression while responding, jokingly saying that the owls left it up to them because they're busy, annoying Rocker, who doesn't believe that the owls are truly busy.
Princess decides to ask the other Friends if they have any information on this elusive location. After a short while, however, the group discovers that none of the many Friends they questioned had any clue where the place they were looking for would be, which Emperor attributes to Friends being content to stay within their usual territory. Serval then appears, asking what the matter is, and Kaban follows not long after, thanking them for their help earlier in the series. Gean expresses a mutual feeling, saying that she believes they owe her as well. Rocker nonchalantly expresses to Serval that PPP is on the hunt for Japari Buns, accidentally sparking Serval's curiosity and causing her to ask what they're doing.
Hululu almost spoils the secret, talking about how Serval follows Kaban, but the rest of the group quiets her and quickly covers up the truth, with Rocker vaguely telling Serval that something is "going on". Princess spills that the idols are looking for somewhere where Japari Buns are made, but Serval has no clue where it is either, asking if Kaban knows. Kaban mentions how when Lucky Beasts run out of Japari Buns in their basket, they'll leave to somewhere to get more, and suggests the penguins follow a Lucky Beast to see where it goes. The group thanks Kaban for her ingenuity, and leave to go find it. Kaban is left dumbfounded, but is glad that she could help. Serval then tells Kaban that Campo Flicker wanted to show the two how to find bedding, and asks if she would like to do that, which Kaban agrees to do.
Meanwhile, the penguins are having difficulty finding a Lucky Beast with a basket. Rocker mentions how it always appears when they're out of Japari Buns, but Princess spots one heading towards a group of Friends. The Lucky Beast only has two or three remaining Buns, disappointing Hululu, who wants to have one herself, causing Rocker to point out how she just had one. However, before the banter can continue, Gean mentions how the basket is now empty and has no more Buns left, and the penguins realize they have no plan for what to do next. As it leaves, Princess decides the group should follow Boss. After following it for a short while, Emperor laments how even with a human body, she has difficulty following a rough path like the one the Lucky Beast is taking them on. Hululu expresses mild surprise, and the rest of the group tells Emperor to stay focused on the Lucky Beast and power through it. Gean soon spots something, which Princess identifies as a tunnel of some kind on the cliffside. Gean says that she sees another Lucky Beast on the west side of the cliff, and Rocker notes how the Boss they were following went into the hole. They attempt to follow it into the hole, but another Lucky Beast blocks their path.
Gean notes that the Boss is angry, and the idols back away from it hesitantly. Emperor asks the group what to do, wondering if they should force their way through. However, Rocker points out that if Boss is angry, they have no way to run. Gean wonders if they can ask Kaban's companion, Lucky, for help with their quest. However, Princess counters this, saying that they have to keep Serval's intent to follow Kaban secret, and that it may expose the secret to talk about it too much. Just then, an unknown Friend appears, surprising the group, and Rocker then identifies her as New Zealand Giant Penguin. She asks if the group is still unable to find the Japari Buns, confusing Hululu, who is surprised to hear they can't. Princess then questions Giant Penguin on how she knew that was what the group was doing, with Emperor noting how she is full of mystery.
Gean mentions how Boss won't allow the group into the tunnel. Giant Penguin suggests going to the Lucky Beast and pretending that they're in trouble, a concept that interests Princess. Giant Penguin explains that Lucky Beasts not only assist humans, but also help Friends who are having issues. Afterwards, Giant Penguin leaves them to their own devices. Rocker asks what her deal is, with Emperor admitting that everything she said seemed to be correct. Princess decides to try this approach, and the penguins head towards the Lucky Beast. Rocker uses a direct approach, asking to be let in to find something "rockin", but Boss is unfazed, and Rocker finds herself attempting to explain her meaning of "rockin", to no avail, with Hululu comforting her.
Emperor then decides to attempt to coax the Lucky Beast to move, pretending to be lost. However, she is too intimidated by Boss's scary appearance, and passes out shortly. When she wakes up, she finds that it was useless, noting that the Lucky Beast seemed very cold. Again, Hululu comforts Emperor. Gean decides to try another direct approach, admitting to the Lucky Beast that in order to help someone, they will need Japari Buns, and politely asks Boss to let her in. Surprisingly, the Lucky Beast then moves out of the way, and Gean thanks it. The rest of the penguins thank and praise Gean, and move forward.
Inside the tunnel, Princess notes that it is very dark inside, only able to see light coming from the exit. Rocker hurts herself, having apparently jumped, with Gean advising her to avoid that so that she doesn't hit her head, and asking the group as a whole to walk slowly. Emperor exclaims that she can see the exit, and the group steps out to see a huge lake, astonishing the idols. Princess admits that she had no clue such a place existed, with Hululu pointing out that there's an island on the lake. Emperor posits that perhaps Boss went onto the island, and advises the group to head in that direction.
After swimming to the island, Emperor mentions that the island seems mysterious. In response, Gean says that the island is also beautiful. Princess notices that the Japari Buns have been refilled on the Boss they followed, with Rocker impressed by the number of Buns present. Emperor is confused at how this is possible, asking if perhaps Japari Buns grow on trees. Soon, a Lucky Beast approaches, throwing Japari Buns at a tree, which they stick to. Princess is confused about what she's witnessing, though Hululu finds it pretty. Soon after, the Lucky Beast leaves.
Emperor is confused about where it came from, but Rocker springs into action, electing to take some nearby buns. Emperor soon finds herself somewhat overwhelmed, with Rocker agreeing, saying that she isn't too skilled with doing trivial tasks such at this. However, Princess states that they need to help Kaban and Serval any way they can, mentioning that they don't even know if food exists outside of the island they inhabit. Gean hurries the group, telling them to act quickly before Boss returns, causing Hululu to begin moving very quickly, which overwhelms Rocker. Emperor comments on how quick Hululu can be when it comes to matters involving Japari Buns, amazing Gean, who thinks that Hululu has already taken somewhere around 100 Buns.
However, a Lucky Beast appears, forcing the penguins to run. However, as expected, there is nowhere to run, with angry Lucky Beasts approaching from all sides. Emperor decides to head into the water, and jumps into the lake. The other penguins follow her, with Gean noting how much calmer it is now, and they begin to swim away. Hululu comments on how quickly Gean is swimming, and then comments on how quickly Rocker is moving once they surface. Emperor believes they have made an escape, with reaching the exit being all that remains. Predictably, however, more Lucky Beasts appear in the tunnel itself.
Trapped between two approaching sets of Lucky Beasts, the penguins are at a loss as to what to do next, feeling that escape may be hopeless. However, Arai-san and Fennec Fox arrive on their surrey bike that they were seen leaving on at the end of Episode 12.1. They run into a Lucky Beast, shocking the penguins, and Raccoon, not noticing, asks where to find a "roundy-thing" to replace the wheels on the broken Japari Bus. Fennec notices that they may have hit something, but Princess notices that they seem familiar. The duo then introduce themselves, with Hululu curious about the bus-like object, which Raccoon explains was given to them by the Professor. Fennec then notices that she and Arai-san seem to have hit a Boss, shocking Arai-san, who apologizes.
Fennec notices that it didn't break, but does say it looks angry, and suggests running away. The penguins get onto the bike along with Raccoon and Fennec, who then hurriedly bike away from the Lucky Beasts, with Hululu marveling at their speed. Princess is glad that the two of them saved the idols, and Gean asks what the two of them are doing here. Fennec explains that a specific girl told them to try finding things here, with Arai-san sadly saying they were tricked. Emperor then says that it must have been Giant Penguin, with Princess astonished at how she predicted all of this. Rocker calls Giant Penguin creepy, but Gean is simply thankful to be able to rest, prompting Raccoon to say that she still can't rest, because she hasn't found the round thing she was looking for. Fennec tells Arai-san that it's alright, because they were able to help some other Friends. Arai-san, however, does not accept this, feeling like her credibility is now in danger.
Back safely, Margay greets the penguins and thanks them for all their trouble. Princess vents that it was a scary experience, with Rocker ready to relax with a swim and a walk. However, Arai-san is upset, lacking both her roundy-thing, and now in trouble with Boss, which frightens her. Giant Penguin then appears, saying how Lucky Beast is like a plush toy as compared to a dinosaur. Hululu is confused about what Giant Penguin means by dinosaur, but Serval then appears, seeing the group having difficulties, and asks them to try her cooking. Margay is excited to have a taste of "cooking", which is still considered a rarity in Japari Park. Kaban says that Serval is doing all of the cooking today, and Lucky reminds her to test the food before serving it.
Emperor is happy to eat, as by this point, she's starving, and Serval asks if they've brought Japari Buns, offering to give them some. Emperor admits they brought their own, but intend to to give them to someone else to keep them going. Princess finds her phrasing humorous, comparing Emperor to a little bird. Hululu wonders if it would have been better if they had gone through with Serval's offer, while Margay says a few off-handed comments that appear to be exciting her. Serval admits that she isn't sure what Emperor means, but that she prefers to eat her Japari Buns normally.
Princess asks Kaban what she did today, who responds that she visited Campo Flicker and got a few lessons, stating that she learned a lot. Lucky comments that though Campo Flicker's lessons can be difficult, it's important to learn how to use what is available as a bed. Princess and Emperor are startled to hear a Lucky Beast, exasperatedly saying they have "Boss-phobia", though Hululu says this Lucky Beast doesn't seem to sound scary, with Gean even saying that it sounds gentle compared to others. Emperor decides to ask Arai-san what the "roundy-thing" is, who says that the Professor asked them to look for it as a surprise for the "long journey".
Rocker laughs, saying that the two of them must have had the same surprise in mind. Serval overhears, glad to hear that the girls are trying to make someone happy, and looks forward to seeing the surprise. Kaban mentions how everyone seems to be having fun, and Serval then says that her cooking is ready. Giant Penguin is happy to eat cooking as well, saying it's been a while since she's had any, and laughs to herself. Kaban thanks Serval, and again, Lucky reminds Kaban to first test the food. Everyone excitedly grabs food, and begin to eat, but soon spit out the food, and the audio drama then ends.
- Emperor Penguin
- Gentoo Penguin
- Humboldt Penguin
- Southern Rockhopper Penguin
- Royal Penguin
- New Zealand Giant Penguin
- Fennec Fox
- Northern White-Faced Owl (as Margay impression)
- Eurasian Eagle-Owl (as Margay impression)
- Campo Flicker