The Toymaker's Labyrinth is a written story by Lupan Evezan. It features the Crew of the Copper-Colored Cupids — including Taskmaster-523, Pessimist-242 and Larrikin-1029 —, Pessimist's Fog Ship, and, in their debuts, Madame Tarsa, the Plush Posse, the Mayor and Sheriff of Wild West Town, the Mechanical Fortune Teller, the Clay Thing and the Mechanical Skeleton. Thymon is mentioned.
After Pessimist's Fog Ship drops Pessimist and Larrikin off in the giant-sized workshop of the Interdimensional Toymaker Madame Tarsa, an irate Tarsa banishes the interlopers into her Toymaker's Labyrinth, a maze-like pocket dimension populated by a variety of sentient toys, some friendly, some quite menacing indeed…
- Taskmaster-523 is Prefect of the Department of Assignments.
- Reluctantly partnered-up, Pessimist and Larrikin are meant to go on a mission to Dimension 8696-2537. Pessimist's Fog Ship instead takes them to Madame Tarsa's Workshop.
- It turns out that Pessimist-242's Gemstone Heart is a literal lump of coal.
- The Crew of the Copper-Colored Cupids operates gemstone mines; Larrikin fears the Cupid Parliament might send him to work there as punishment.
- Tarsa displays such abilities as size-shifting, shapeshifting (including changing her fingers into claws or sprouting new limbs at will), multiplying herself as a way to multitask, and ignoring gravity to walk on the ceiling.
- The Toymaker's Labyrinth is located inside a large toy chest belonging to Tarsa.
- Tarsa owns a magician's hat which she uses to shrink people.
- Tarsa recognises one Fog Ship component as a Dimensional Warp Drive. The Ship cannot take off through the Void without it, although it can still fly about on a physical level.
- The Clay Thing, whose existence was maintained by a Life Crystal, was made up of a batch of Clay for the Struggling Artist. To create more such Clay, Tarsa has to import shiftstones from the mines of Swaatch.
- Pessimist's Fog Ship has a built-in laser it can activate at will. It proves powerful enough to temporarily singe off one of Tarsa's eye; she later notes that it took her four minutes to regenerate that eye, an unusually long time.
- When exposed to air before being fully cooled, still-boiling Love Potion has a tendency to explode.
- Larrikin mentions the Department of Completed Assignments.
- The Department of Assignments was first mentioned in Pessimist and the Dromedaries (2019). The Department of Discipline, first mentioned in The Labors of Juliet (2019), and the Department of Completed Assignments, first mentioned in Marksmanship-522 and the Multi-Dimensional Race (2019), are also referenced.
- Madame Tarsa's stall on the Interdimensional Black Market and two of her living dolls previously appeared in Misadventures in the Interdimensional Black Market (2019), though not Tarsa herself. The same story also first mentioned the Glowing Caves of Swaatch.
- The story ends with Larrikin-1029 giving Madame Tarsa the inspiration to create Thymon Plushies, which would later become a running gag in the Crew of the Copper-Colored Cupids series.
Behind the scenes
This short story was released in September of 2019 on the Crew of the Copper-Colored Cupids website.