Book 5: The Predator, Chapters 7-8
Marco is full-on lobster now, and is torn between his lobster brain that wants to kill and eat things, and his human brain that wants to nope out of this entire situation really hard. Jake and Ax are similarly lobster-form and not loving it, although at least they’re pretty easily able to identify each other because they’re the only three lobsters without rubber bands around their claws.
(Ax thinks the claws are pretty cool because of course he does, Ax apparently thinks everything is pretty cool.)
They decide to hold out in lobster form as long as they can to give the pursuit time to die down, so Ax is put in charge of timekeeping and the other two hang out and just try to not be super creeped out by themselves and each other.
After a while, they’re startled by being suddenly grabbed out of the tank, rubber-banded, and dumped into an ice-filled container with other lobsters. Their crappy lobster senses aren’t good enough to tell if they’ve been captured by their pursuers, or bought by a random shopper, or what, and they decide to stay put and see what happens next rather than risk blowing their cover.
The ice slows their systems down, and Marco is sort of lulled into a stupor, when Ax tells them that they only have a few minutes left of their two hours. They agree that they’d rather take a chance on morphing back without knowing where they are than risk getting stuck as lobsters forever.
Marco prepares himself to un-morph, only to be interrupted when he’s suddenly picked up and his rubber band removed, and he feels steam on his shell. Oops.
Oh, Oh, no.
Marco is so vehement about not being steamed to death that he immediately morphs his mouth back, so now he’s a lobster with human lips, trying to scream but not yet having vocal cords. Oh, NO, that is both hilarious and awful, I’d swear off lobsters right now except I don’t really eat seafood anyway.
Understandably, the woman holding him over a pot of boiling water freaks out and drops Marco The Human-Lipped Lobster. He sort of clings/scuttles/flings himself out of the way of the pot, morphing all the while, so that he lands on the floor in a sort of toddler-sized half-human half-lobster horror.
He looks around to see that Jake is mostly human again, albeit semi-stuck in the grocery bag he was in while in lobster form. Ax is a lobster-Andalite shitshow. The woman who bought them in lobster form is just screaming, endlessly, as you would.
The kids, quick-thinking, inform the woman that she’s just dreaming this whole thing and should probably try to forget all about it and definitely should not tell anyone about it. And also she should take the remaining lobsters to the beach and set them free, because they’re feeling sort of shuddery about any lobsters getting eaten right now.
And with that, everyone changes back to human form and heads out, leaving that poor woman in her kitchen, probably rethinking her entire life and definitely rethinking her dinner party menu.