Baby Troubles

By Lemmy's Campfire Tales

"PUT ME DOWN!" Yellow T. bursts as he is being tied up by the Goombas Ludwig sent after him.

"Silence!" King Goomba yells. "Ludwig von Koopa requests you appear before him, no matter what it takes!"

"But I have these baby-fied heroes to take care of!" Yellow T. replies.

"Then we'll have to kidn- I mean, request that they appear before him, too," King Goomba replies.


"King Smithy! King Smithy!" Yaridovich shouts as he runs down the metallic corridors to tell his master urgent news.

"What is it now, Yarido?" Smithy says boredly, as he hasn't done anything all day except the "pull my finger" thing.

"Good news! The Mushroom Kingdom is in a vulnerable position! We can establish a link back to the planet and takeover completely!" Yaridovich answers excitedly.

"Okay, okay, but we're going to need a few things. Any suggestions?" Smithy asks his crew.

"We need an arsenal of weaponry!" Axem Black replies.

"We need tanks galore!" comes the reply of Yaridovich.

"We need a fifer!" Axem Green replied.

Everyone looks at Axem Green with blank stares.

"What? A fife is just a small flute," Axem Green tells the others. "It's used mainly with drums in playing marches. I thought a victory parade would be nice once we conquer the place."

"... Excellent idea, Axem Green!" Smithy compliments. "Yaridovich, call up a fifer!"

Smithy must be getting senile, Yaridovich thinks as he walks to the nearest telephone.


Meanwhile, in Rose Town...

"Pro archer and amateur fifer Bowyer, this is!" Bowyer greets as he picks up his phone. "Call, why did you? NYA!"

"We need a fifer," comes the reply at the other end of the line.


Back with Toadette, she has finally caught up with the doomship and has reached Bowser's Castle.


We see Ludwig for a second, sitting in a chair in the room while nearly all of the babies sit, crying. Just behind him, Wario, Syrup, and Waluigi are looking through papers and stuff to find an answer as to how to reverse their condition.

Let's see what we have to work with, Wario thinks. How to un-clone yourself, how to un-shrink yourself... Gah! Nothing about un-baby-ing yourself! One of these papers is just a coupon for Shroom Mart!

Wario folds the useless coupon into a paper airplane, and sends it flying. Somehow, it slips through the bars on the windows and sails away...


Darn! Goombella thinks, back with Luigi and the others. Where am I going to find a useless piece of paper?!

It is at about that time that Wario's paper airplane hits her in the back of the head.


"Come on, whatever-your-name-is!" Lord Crump tells the Elite X-Naut he brought with him to Shy Guy's Toy Box.

"I keep telling you, my name is X-Cellent!" the Elite tells Crump. "I'm the head of all the other Elites! I'm right up there with you and Grodus!"

"Well," Crump replies, "if you keep talking like that, your current position in our ranks will be a mere memory once I'm done with you! Now, hurry up! I hear that General Guy has managed to get his hands on one of those so-called Rods!"

"Which one?" X-Cellent asks.

Just then, various Shy Guys with muscles bigger than you'd ever imagine surround the two intruders.

"I'm going with the Power one," Crump answers.


And now, back with Toadette...

Toadette crawls into the castle. Inside there are two guards standing and talking.

"You're kidding me, right? So you're sayin' that you been seein' babies sneakin' around the hallway near that door that Prince Ludwig instructed us to avoid, huh? Get real!"

"It's true!" replies the other guard. The two don't notice as Toadette crawls onward.


Yet once more, with Crump and X-Cellent...

"I can't believe we defeated them," Crump comments as he looks at the unconscious bodies of their enemies.

"I could," X-Cellent also comments, "especially once you pulled out that ray gun, laughed menacingly, and shot blasts set to Stun at each one of their hearts."

"Well, at least that's over," Crump replies. "Now, all that's left is to grab that Power Rod!"

"You think that it's going to be just that easy?" the now-muscular General Guy asks as his tank pulls into view. "Well, I have a surprise for you! Those were the weakest ones in my new revolution of Shy Guys!"

"They were?" Crump and X-Cellent say meekly as they hear many loud footsteps approaching.


And, in Rose Town...

"Believe you made it, I can't!" Bowyer exclaims as Yaridovich, Smithy, the Axems, Count Down, the Ding-a-Lings, and the rest of Smithy's forces teleport into view.

"So, how good can you fife?" Yaridovich questions.

Bowyer starts to play the worst fife music ever heard in the history of any planet.

"BAD FIFING ALERT!" the Ding-a-Lings yell.

"... Well, it's a start," Yaridovich comments. "Plus, you work cheap. As cheap as Cheep Cheep cheap. You're hired, whether we like it or not."


Back with Luigi...

Luigi sits, figuring how he is to enter Bowser's Castle.

"If I go right through the front, I'll easily be turned into a baby myself. Hmm..."

Luigi then notices Goombella scribbling on the paper airplane that came from Bowser's Castle. "Hey, I have an idea!" Luigi tells himself. "I'll go to Rogueport, find that cursed chest that Mario was talking about one day, and be cursed! I'll then just fly into Bowser's Castle!"

Luigi then rushes back home, leaving the other adults with their own babies, not to mention Popple and Co. Anyway, Luigi pulls out a suitcase and begins putting stuff in.

"Let's see, if I'm going to go to Rogueport, what do I need? Let's see... a hammer, some sturdy boots, and a lot of badges. Now, what am I missing? ... Wait, I know! I need... a fifer!"

(Yes, that may become a new run-on gag.)

Luigi pulls out a phonebook and calls the first number for a fifer he sees.

"Pro archer and amateur fifer Bowyer, this is!" Bowyer tells Luigi from the other end of the line. "Sorry, I am! NYA! Travelling with Smithy and his minions so they can takeover Plit, my current job is! Later, I'll see you!"

Luigi hangs up the phone, runs back to the adults, and tells them the news he just received.

"Smithy's back," Luigi says, "and he's going to conquer Plit at what is probably the worst time ever!"

"I can't believe this!" Beldam yells after hearing the news. "Why, I'd rather face hundreds of hulking Shy Guys and try to take back a powerful artifact from them rather than this!"


Speaking of which, back with Crump and X-Citing...

"So, you defeated that wave," says General Guy, "but now you have to deal with the ones who are in the elite class of my army!" Crump replies to this by shooting one of the wheels off General Guy's tank, causing it to topple over and fall.

"As they say," Crump comments upon his actions, "actions speak louder than words."

Turning towards the direction in which the footsteps are coming from, Lord Crump and X-Cellent spot the oncoming troops. They are led by Gourmet Guy, who is now 100% muscles instead of 100% pure blubber.

"Let's do this," Crump tells X-Cellent. Crump then sets his ray gun to "Mild Damage", lets out another menacing laugh, and begins to fire upon the Shy Guys.


At that same time, in Moleville, Sir Grodus and a X-Naut Ph.D. are exploring the mines.

"If I left only Crump and that Elite to retrieve all those powerful objects, I knew we'd never win," Grodus explains to the Ph.D. upon being asked why they're here.

"But Sir Grodus," the X-Naut Ph.D. questions, "why did you choose me, and me alone, as your companion in collecting these objects?"

"Because," Grodus answers, "you're the only member of my army, besides the Shadow Sirens and Crump, that doesn't call me Dude! Now, X-Periment, on to the matter at hand. My sensors don't detect a piece of the Star Road here, like last time, but I do detect that another of those Rods of Nib has appeared."

"Which one?" the X-Naut PhD, now known as X-Periment, asks.

"The body modification one," Grodus replies. "It seems the best one to collect right now, as in case Bowser and his new minion get a hold of us and turn us both into babies, we should be capable of changing ourselves back. Mind you, Bowser's magic might now be stronger than the rods themselves. However, if we are able to change back, we can easily escape and continue with the tasks at hand."

"That's very wise of you, Sir Gro- UMPH!" X-Periment starts to say as he collides with a person who looks much like a punching bag.

"The name's Nello! PUNCHINELLO!" the punching bag-like character yells. "And you're trespassing in my personal hangout, just like that Mario character some years back! But since then, I've returned stronger than ever!"

"You're the guardian of the mines? Seriously? GACK ACK ACK!" Grodus laughs. "That's the funniest thing I've heard in days!"

"Well, I am too the guy who guards this place! And I'm gonna get you for saying mean stuff like that! Let's settle this in a one-on-one battle, just me against the laughing head!" Punchinello challenges. "I'll even wager this neat stick thing that I found! Dunno how it works, but it looks neat!"

"Deal," Grodus accepts upon hearing that the winner of this fight gets the Rod of Nib.


Back with Crump and X-Citing, they have just subdued most of the buff members of General Guy's army, and are about to fire upon the muscular Gourmet Guy before attacking the head of the army directly.

Crump begins talking while he and his partner fight the Shy Guys. "I wonder what Grodus is doing. Well, I guarrantee that it isn't fighting an eggplant-robot with an unhealthy obsession with explosives."


Meanwhile, Ludwig is sitting in the dungeon, which is filled with numerous bawling babies. The room already smells horrible, and it is gradually smelling worse and worse as more of the infants start to cry and time goes on. Suddenly he hears a knock on the door and, upon answering it, finds Roy standing there along with the Goomba King, Yellow T, and the four toddlers that are with the Toad. The Koopaling comes in along with Yellow T. and the children, and the Goomba King walks away without paying any mind to any of it. Ludwig closes the door after everyone's inside.

"Great, now that you are here," Ludwig starts, addressing the Toad, "change these little brats' diapers!"

"I don't think he will," says Roy. "How about this: for every one he changes, you change two! Haha!"

Roy walks out of the room, while the Toad looks confused and all of the babies except Wario, Syrup, and Waluig, look either a) confused, or b) scared by the fact that in the past few minutes they've seen two giant turtle mutants and a large living fungus with bad fashion sense.


Back with Grodus...

"Let's get this party started!" Punchinello exclaims as he lights a tiny Bob-omb and tosses it at Grodus. Grodus merely hops over it, but the Bob-omb hits X-Periment and does some light damage.

"Ow..." X-Periment groans.

Grodus retaliates by shooting streams of purple lightning at Punchinello.

"AUGH! AWAWAWA! OTHER NOISES INDICATING PAIN!!!" Punchinello cries out. "You're gonna pay for that! BIG BOB-ULK SUMMON!"

An enormous Bob-Ulk that has never been seen in the existence of Plit materializes in Punchinello's hands.

"This... will... show you... who's the... best! Man... this thing... is HEAVY! Anyways... I'm... gonna- ACK!" Punchinello yells out as he fell from the immense weight of the explosive device.

"GACK ACK ACK ACK ACK!" Grodus laughs at his opponent.

Grodus then summons one bolt of purple lightning, which light the wick of the Bob-Ulk. After Grodus and X-Periment run away, the same event from Super Mario RPG happens all over again. Upon returning, Grodus and X-Periment find a fallen Punchinello covered in cinders on the ground.

"Here, take it! But I'm none too happy about this!" Punchinello says before slipping back into unconsciousness. X-Periment picks up the Rod of Body Modification and hands it to his boss.

"Yes! One of the great Rods of Nib is ours! I only hope Lord Crump's mission goes as well as ours have," Grodus tells the X-Naut PhD before they both leave the area.


Speaking of which, Lord Crump and X-Citing have finally knocked down all of General Guy's army, including Gourmet Guy.

"GRR!" General Guy growls in anger. "You may have beaten my army, but you will never catch me!"

General Guy hops into his tank, only to remember that it had fallen mere moments ago. Seeing this as his opportunity, Lord Crump sets his blaster up to "Shots of DOOM" and fires blasts upon the tank.

"Aw, nuts," General Guy sighs as he sees a barrage of laser blasts heading towards him.


The tank goes up in smoke, and all that is left is General Guy who is covered in cinders.

"Lord Crump, if you had that "Shots of DOOM" setting all this time," X-Citing asks, "then why haven't you used it before?"

"Those shots require a lot of energy, and I use them as a last resort," Crump explains. "Now, General Guy, hand over that Rod of Power!"

"Fine! Just don't hurt me!" General Guy cries like the little coward he really is inside. He then hands over the Rod of Power, which Lord Crump puts in his inventory.

"Perfect! Now all that's left is to head back to our base in Poshley Heights!" Crump happily tells X-Citing.

"Yep!" X-Citing replies. "I just hope that Sir Grodus Dude was right about there being no force on Plit able to stop us."

"Well, Sir Grodus is always right," Crump tells the X-Naut Elite. "Unless, of course, some beings from an alien planet arrive. Then, we'd have some real competition!"


"WHAT DO YOU MEAN, SOMEBODY ELSE ALREADY HAS THE ARTIFACT HERE?!" Smithy furiously yells at one of the residents of Moleville.

"That's right," replies Punchinello, "some little domehead thing and a weird guy wearing a lab coat beat me and took it."


"Don't worry, King Smithy," Yaridovich tells his master, "I am picking up the location of a different artifact; one of the Crystal Stars. Apparently, it has landed in Nimbus Land. Thankfully, Bowser has already taken down their defenses. All we need to do is swoop in, grab it, and get out!"

"Excellent!" Smithy replies. "There's just one more thing we have to do!"

Smithy then casts an Ultima spell on Punchinello, blasting him into the distance.


Meanwhile, back in Poshley Heights, Crump and X-Citing have just come back with the Rod of Power.

"Good work, Lord Crump," Grodus compliments, which is rarely seen.

"Thank you, Sir Grodus," Crump replies to his superior. "Now, I understand that you and the head of the PhDs went out and obtained another artifact yourself while we beat the Shy Guy army?"

"Yes, but it wasn't much of a challenge. Just an explosive-loving punching bag to slow me down before we obtained it," Grodus tells him.

Just then, Punchinello breaks through the roof and lands on the ground with a thud!

"That's him now, actually," Grodus comments upon the recent event.

"Oww... Nimbus Land... Crystal Stars.. Defenses are down... Oh, my head..." Punchinello mutters before falling down again.

"That was convenient," Crump says upon hearing the latest information. "It looks like he's recently heard something about the artifacts. He seems too dumb to lie, so there must be a Crystal Star there! If we hurry, X-Citing and I can be there within the hour!"

"Fine, fine, but I may as well come too!" Grodus replied. "Pack your bags, X-Periment, for we are heading to Nimbus Land!"

And so, they get there within the hour, as expected. However, none of the X-Nauts expected what happens next...

"WHO ON PLIT ARE YOU?!" Grodus and Smithy yell simultaniously as the two teams finally encounter each other.


"This is bad, very bad," Luigi mutters as he paces back and forth in front of his house. "Bowser has baby-fied Mario and all of his friends except me; Smithy is taking over the world using everything my brother has ever used to save it; and now it seems that Yellow T. and my baby-fied pals have been kidnapped as well! Plus, knowing how things turn out, another bunch of bad guys are probably taking over the world as well as Bowser and Smithy! What should I do about this? CAN I do something about this? Decisions, decisions...

"If only I had some help... that's it! I know the one person Bowser forgot! Well, besides me."


Back in Nimbus Land, the two evil parties were furious once they found out that their goals were the same.

"What do you mean, you're here to collect that Crystal Star? I'M the only robot who should have the honor of taking over the world!" Smithy tells Grodus.

"Oh yeah? Well, Bowser Koopa could fit through the eye of a needle before your dreams of conquest comes true!" Grodus retorts.

"An idea, I just have!" Bowyer announces just then and there. "Work together, why don't we? Rule the world together, we all can!"

"NO!" comes the reply of everyone else in either party.

"Only the X-Nauts should rule supreme!" Lord Crump shouts.

"You're wrong! Only King Smithy can preform such a feat!" Yaridovich shouts back.

"Yo, listen up!" Axem Red announces. "We're all after that Crystal thing, so why not settle it Battle Royale? You X-Nauts versus us guys from Smithy's gang; winner takes the prize!"

"Deal!" comes the reply from Grodus as he prepares himself for another match.


"I'm sick of this place, see?" Popple tells his two baby-fied rookies. "So, we're gonna break out of this joint and do something!"

"Right!" comes Booster and Chomp Bro's reply. Meanwhile, elsewhere in the room, Goombella has managed to write something saying that she and Goombario are different from the others, and now she is having the problem of getting people to notice it.


"Man, I'm getting sick of this place," Wario mutters to himself. Bored, he then proceeds to make more paper airplanes out of Ludwig's notes and send them flying.


"I don't get it!" Goombella tells Goombario in their baby-talk language. "Why won't they pay attention?"

At that time, another paper airplane flies in.

"Don't worry; I have an idea!" Goombario tells Goombella. He then proceeds to scribble something on the new piece of paper.

"I'm telling you, we've got to- Hey, what's that?" Beldam exclaimes as he sees Goombario's sign. It reads,

Free 1-Ups for anyone who reads Goombella's note!

"Sounds good," Beldam comments. "I mean, what could a baby Goomba want to tell us, anyways?"


Meanwhile, the fight between Smithy's Gang and the X-Nauts is raging onward. Now, normally Smithy's group would probably easily blow them out of the water, considering that a lot of his guys were bosses and stuff. However, because of the rods the X-Nauts are putting up quite a fight.

As the battle rages onward, it soon becomes apparent that the fight is a stalemate. Axem Green, noticing this fact for himself, slips away from the fight as quietly as he can. He then proceeds to sneak into the castle, where he finds the Crystal Star. Specifically, it is the Ruby Crystal Star, which grants the owner the special ability Art Attack. However, he also notices something else...

Back outside, the battle is still even on both sides, when, suddenly, an orange line starts to appear around the X-Naut army! The line then forms a complete circle, and the X-Nauts take severe damage!

"Excellent!" Smithy yells out as he sees that one of his followers has obtained the Crystal Star.

"Joined us, you should have! NYA!" Bowyer tells the dazed X-Nauts, as Smithy starts to leave the area and head back to their base in Rose Town. By the time the X-Nauts are out of their daze, Smithy and the others are miles away.

"DARN IT!" Grodus yells upon their defeat.

Lord Crump, who is also angry, stomps the ground in frustration. However, it isn't exactly ground he is standing on, and he eventually passes through the clouds and starts to fall.

"HELP!" Crump cries out as he plummeted downwards at a high velocity.


Later, in Poshley Heights, Lord Crump is in a body cast.

"I'll recover soon," Lord Crump tells his superior, "but I must sit the next mission out."

"Very well then," Sir Grodus replies. "X-Citing, X-Periment, and myself will head to the Pineapple Kingdom, where another Rod has been located. You can stay here and try to gather more information."

"Pineapple Kingdom, sir?" Crump questions. "Isn't that place ruled by Donkey Kong since he conquered it during his 'Jungle Beat' adventures?"

"Yes," Grodus answers, "and I have a strong feeling that those other collectors won't be there to interfere with our plans this time!"


And, in Smithy's base in Rose Town...

"You have done well, Axem Green," Smithy compliments his underling, "but I fear that those annoying X-characters will be even more powerful next time. My joints haven't been the same since I was repaired after Mario first defeated me, and I fear that I won't keep up this pace much longer."

"Don't fear, King Smithy, for we happen to have a trump card!" Axem Green tells his leader. "You see, even though our radars detected a Crystal Star, it didn't mean that there wasn't anything else there!"

Axem Green then proceeds to pull out the Grass Rod.

"A Rod of Nib! This is perfect! This collecting business is in our favor, now!"

"The readings detect that Muscular, one of the Star Spirits, has now been located somewhere on Waluigi's Island!" Yaridovich declares as he steps back from a nearby computer monitor.

"Why do you think Bowser imprisoned the Star Spirits again?" Axem Yellow whispers to Axem Red.

"I dunno," Axem Red whispers back. "Maybe Bowser, having a strange feeling that he would forget somebody on his list of people who have helped Mario, did it so he or she wouldn't get their help without going on a long and tedious adventure first. That way, by the time he or she finds them all, Bowser would have completely ruled the world."

"Wow," Axem Yellow whispers again. "And all this time, I thought he was going senile."


Meanwhile, back to Popple and his rookies...

The three are standing near a window while all the attention is on Goombella and Goombario. Booster climbs onto Chomp Bro's shoulders, and then Popple climbs onto the boss of the Snifits 3's shoulders. Popple tries to open the window then, but can't push it up.

"This stinks!" Popple says to his two rookies. "If we weren't so small I could do this easily!"

"Boss, maybe we should just find another window," Booster tells Popple.

"Oh yeah?" Popple questions. "Well, if this window is shut, then what makes you think that somebody didn't shut all of the other windows, too?"

"Well," Booster explains, "how do you explain those paper airplanes?"

"... Good point, Rookie number one," Popple replies. They then crawl along, searching for the one open window in the place. The three crawl window to window, eventually reaching an open one. As they pile up to climb out of it, the bartender notices and closes the window, then picks Booster and Popple off of Chomp Bro and sets them on the floor.

"Argh!" all three yell. "WE'RE NEVER GOING TO GET OUT OF HERE, SEE?" Popple yells out. "Whenever there's an opening, somebody shuts it! It's just not fair!"

"I think they forgot to close that one," Chomp Bro. comments as he sees the open doorway behind Popple.

"Good eye, Rookie number two," Popple comments as the three of them run to the exit. They manage to make it out before the bartender notices them, and they just keep running until they are far into the distance.


Meanwhile, back with the green brother of Mario...

"Man, it's a good thing you came soon!" Luigi tells the character who has just arrived.

"Well," replies the character, "it'd have been quicker if Bowser hadn't gone so far as to turn Gaz into a baby. This body's even got some teeth marks on it from him now. I fail to see what harm Gaz could cause Bowser anyway."

"Well, either way, Geno, it's good that you're here, 'cause I can't think of anyone else who could help."

"What about that Yoshi?"

"Bowser got Yoshi too."

"I don't mean THE Yoshi. I mean that Yoshi fighter. I think his name's Gonzalez Jr. or something."


Speaking of Gonzales Jr...

"Another day, another fight!" Gonzales Jr, the youngest Glitz Pit fighter in existence, tells himself with a grin as he walks back to his dressing room after another one-on-one rematch with Rawk Hawk. However, once he opens the door, he finds that somebody is waiting for him.

"What are you doing here?!" Gonzales Jr. yells out in a shock.

"Something horrible has recently happened. Could you please help me?" the guest asks.

"Well, I'm not certain how exactly you got in here," Gonzales Jr. answers, "but you know I'd help you however I can. So, Flurrie, what's the matter?"

"I won't say much," the Wind Spirit replies, "but I can tell you one thing. The entire existence of Punies may rest on this one event."


Back with Luigi and Geno...

"It looks like he's just stepped out for a while," Luigi tells Geno as he hangs up the telephone. "However, Jolene did tell us that she'll call back when he returns. I'm rather surprised Bowser hasn't struck Glitzville yet, though."

"Well, it looks like we'll have to do without his help for a while. However," Geno tells Luigi, "I did bring along somebody to help, just in case."

"Who?" Luigi asks.

"He's a little Star Kid named Twink," Geno answeres, "and I have a good feeling about him."


Meanwhile, somewhere in the Pineapple Kingdom...

Grodus walks (he used the Rod to restore his body) through the jungle with his two lackies following, finding it surprisingly quiet.

"Where is that monkey? If Bowser has gotten to him too then that leaves us with-"

Grodus's sentence is interrupted by being tackled to the ground by two monkeys, one with long blonde hair and the other with a red hat.

"Stop right there!" the monkey with blonde hair declares. "I, as co-leader of this island during DK's absence, refuse to let you pass on the account of trespassing! Isn't that right, Diddy?"

"You'd better believe it, Dixie!" Diddy Kong replies.

"It looks like we're going to have to do it the hard way," Grodus tells X-Citing and X-Periment as he starts to summon a bolt of lightning. It barely misss Dixie Kong. However, it does mess up her hair.

"GRR!" Dixie Kong growls. "You're going to pay for that!" Dixie Kong then tackles Grodus, while Diddy begins throwing bananapeals at the other two.

Read on!

Credit goes to Martin, Antwan, Croshi, Noxious Koopa, Dylan, Phil the Koopa, Kevin Koopa, Sparky, Ice Toad, Sparky, corbin the crazy yoshi, MetalYoshi, and Waluigi's Twin for writing, editing, suggesting, or in any way enhancing this story.

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