Chapter 3: Mallow’s Helping Hand
“How can this-a happen?” Mario thought to himself with grief. “Why-a, Luigi?” Mario asked, shaking.
“Ha ha ha ha!” Luigi laughed sinisterly. “I do it for Deathbringer!”
“What happened to you, Luigi?” Peach asked fearfully.
“Nothing has happened!” Luigi spat. “I have just simply realized that the only thing that truly matters is retrieving Deathbringer! B-but there are other people after it too, yes…YOU, YOU’RE AFTER IT, AREN’T YOU?”
“I-I don’t even know what that is.” Peach stammered.
“LIES!” Luigi hollered.
“W-what’s going on?” Peach wondered stressfully.
“Your demise,” Luigi replied, grinning.
Peach tried to scream but no sound came, then without warning a gloved fist socked Luigi across the cheek.
“ARRGH!” Luigi grunted as he struggled back up to his feet. “So you got your fight back, did you?” Luigi asked Mario while wiping blood from his a scrape on his cheek.
“The only thing lost is your grip on sanity!” Mario spat.
“That and your life!” Luigi bellowed as he lunged at Mario.
Mario narrowly dodged Luigi and tried
to do a punch of his own. Luigi’s power and speed were no longer at a human
level, Mario couldn’t land a hit on him. When Mario rushed forward Luigi
shot a barrage of green flames and sizzled Mario’s stomach. Mario fell
to his knees and his vision started blurring. He saw lightning, heard screams,
Meanwhile at the Mushroom Kingdom Castle King Toadstool was starting to feel restless…
“I do wonder where my daughter is at this time of night,” King Toadstool said, looking at the clock. “She was supposed to return hours ago…”
“I’m sure she’s fine, Your Majesty,” the Chancellor of Mushroom Kingdom said reassuringly. “If I know Princess Toadstool she’ll realize she’s late and she’ll come back home as quickly as her legs can carry her.”
“I suppose…” the king said, not paying much attention to the chancellor. “But still… all the trouble she gets into… you just can’t help but to worry…”
“King Toadstool,” the Chancellor said. “We have kept Bowser at bay! He has not attacked us for years!”
“Actually months…” King Toadstool responded monotonously.
“That is not the point!” the Chancellor said, frustrated. “My point is that you are overreacting… I mean, Mario’s with her!”
“That is a good point…” King Toadstool said. “In fact, I feel better already!”
“Who you really should be worrying about is yourselves!” an anonymous voice spoke from nowhere.
This sudden voice caused shock to both the chancellor and the king. They were now both looking around like crazy for the anonymous voice.
“W-who are you?” King Toadstool asked with fright.
“I’m the shiver down your spine! I am the chill through you nerves! I am-” The first voice was cut off when another one butted in.
“THE GRAVY ON YOUR MASHED POTATOES!” the second voice said.
“That’s preposterous!” King Toadstool exclaimed. “I clearly eat KETCHUP with my mashed potatoes…”
“Oh this is ridiculous!” the first anonymous voice said heatedly. “Hey losers, I’m down here, right below you!”
Both of the Mushroomers gasped as they looked below and saw what looked like a talking light bulb. It had a pair of goggles and the middle of the head was transparent with a lot of sophisticated lights and technology.
“Lord… Crumpet, was it?” the Chancellor asked.
“Grrrr… first, it’s Lord Crump! Second, don’t compare me to that dimwitted fool! I am Sir Grodus, Lord of the X-Nauts!” Grodus said menacingly.
“Oh, you’re that one loser that got his plans backfired on him,” King Toadstool said in thought. “Yeah, pretty pathetic… Then again your arrogance got you what you deserved…”
“ENOUGH!” Grodus hollered in annoyance. “The past is irrelevant, what matters is now!”
“Actually the past is perfectly relevant because you might repeat a similar mistake…”
“If you won’t give me what I want willingly… THEN I’LL TAKE IT BY FORCE!”
“Yeah, a head versus two entire bodied Mushroomers, who will possibly win?” King Toadstool said with sarcasm.
“Actually I have had… work done…” Grodus responded.
“?” both of the Mushroomers asked in confusion.
“Waaait a second!” Grodus said. “Could ‘?’ even be a proper question?”
“Excuse me, but who’s narrating the story? Me, not you, so shut your pie hole!” the narrator said coldly.
“I like pie…” King Toadstool said, spacing out.
“Well I’ll pretend I didn’t here that and continue from the ‘?’ line,” Grodus said angrily. “You see… I had some modifications done by the X-Naut PhDs.”
“What kind of modifications…?” the Chancellor asked curiously.
“Ha ha ha! Fear the power of the mighty MAGNUS VON GRAPPLE 3.0! BATTERIES ARE NOT INCLUDED!” Grodus raved manically. Then with a touch of a button-
“How can he touch a button if he’s a head?” King Toadstool asked in confusion.
“Just forget about the facts! This is a FICTIONAL tale!” the narrator said angrily.
“Fine!” King Toadstool said defiantly. “But it still isn’t realistic!”
“Fine!” the narrator yelled. “I’ll change it!”
“Ha ha ha! Fear the power of the mighty MAGNUS VON GRAPPLE 3.0! BATTERIES ARE NOT INCLUDED!” Grodus raved manically. Then with a mind activated trigger, many lights started flashing in Grodus’s transparent head, followed by a series of frantic beeps.
“SPORES ALIVE! WHAT’S GOING ON?” the Chancellor asked as the ground started shaking frantically.
“Spores alive?” King Toadstool asked. “That’s just lame…”
“NOW IS NOT THE TIME TO TELL ME WHAT’S
LAME AND WHAT’S NOT!” the Chancellor screamed as he started running around
The tremor stopped abruptly as many robotic pieces and wires started coming out of the bottom of Grodus’s head. The wires and metal eventually pieced together to form the familiar yet ridiculous design of Magnus Von Grapple. Magnus Von Grapple 3.0 was a shade of purple and had an azure-colored X across its chest with a red number 3 tattooed in the middle.
“GACK ACK ACK ACK! FEAR THE POWER OF MY WRATH!” Grodus laughed heinously.
“What a hideous laugh!” King Toadstool said, oblivious to the giant metal menace.
“I-I turn into a giant robot and all you can do is to make fun of… MY LAUGH?!” Grodus asked, enraged, his immense anger making sparks erupt from his cranium and goggles twitch.
“Buh buh buh huh huh huh!” the second anonymous voice chuckled.
“Don’t laugh at me, Crump! Your laugh is just as idiotic as mine!” Grodus snapped. “Oh, and you can come out now, you doofus!”
“Oh, um yeah… sorry…” Crump responded, coming out from his hiding place.
“YOU HID THERE?!” Grodus asked with fire in his eyes.
“Yeah, I thought it was rather clever…” Crump responded pathetically.
“You took the top of a lamp and put it on your head… WHO’S GONNA FALL FOR THAT?”
“I would,” King Toadstool said abruptly.
“Well you don’t count because you’re a moron!” Grodus spazzed.
“Enough bickering!” the Chancellor finally spoke. “And just tell us what you want!”
“I refuse to follow your demand! The only orders I follow are my own!” Grodus said stubbornly. “And besides, you’re in no positio-”
The Chancellor’s left eye started to twitch.
“What’s with you?” Grodus asked.
Then the Chancellor glared a glare that was so sinister that the whole room darkened and thunder could be heard.
“Umm… Okay, since you put it that way… I’ll tell you what we want,” Grodus said, terrified. “Just calm down.”
Then the Chancellor’s glare stopped and the darkness in the room lifted.
“That was one of the most disturbing things I have ever seen in my life…” Grodus said, shaking.
“Wow, Chancellor, I never knew you were such a control freak,” King Toadstool chuckled.
“Sir, now’s not the time for jokes!” the Chancellor said, raising his voice.
“Actually I wasn’t joking…” King Toadstool replied.
“JUST TELL US WHAT YOU WANT SO WE CAN GET THIS OVER WITH!” the Chancellor yelled at the two X-Nauts.
“Crumpets!” Lord Crump responded, rubbing his stomach.
“SHUT UPm FOOL!” Grodus hollered at the idiotic Crump. “IT’S ALL ABOUT ME, NOT YOU! ME, ME, ME, ME, ME!”
“Geez, you’re like my wife, the world always revolves around her!” Crump responded, crossing his arms.
“JUST LET ME DO THE TALKING, YOU MORON!” Grodus shouted. “Okay fungus, we came here to take all of your Starmen! If you refuse to hand them over we’ll take them by force!”
“Our Starmen!” King Toadstool said, taken aback. “Never!”
“The Starmen are one of our most important items here and we will not be giving them to rats like you!” the Chancellor yelled in rage.
“You really don’t have a choice,” Grodus stated. Then with mechanical moans the knuckles and hands (this version of Magnus Von Grapple had them newly installed) were pulled into the arm of the robot and then a rather large minigun came out. Grodus brandished the weapon at the two Mushroomers, then pointed it directly at them. “Now give me the Starmen!”
“Mario?” a distant voice echoed. “Are you okay?”
“Mmmwhuut?” Mario mumbled as he opened his eyes.
“I’m glad you’re okay,” the distant voice said.
Mario started to regain his vision and the blurriness started to subside. When Mario fully recovered he saw two beady, black eyes look right into his about one inch away.
“AHHH!” Mario screamed and jumped back.
“AHHH!” the figure over Mario yelled and started to run around in circles.
“W-wait… Mallow?” Mario asked, looking at the marshmallow-like being.
“Oh!” Mallow said panting. “Sorry I scared you.”
“Heh… Looks like I gave you a bit of a scare yourself,” Mario replied.
Then the battle with Luigi hit Mario like a ton of bricks.
“Where’s Luigi?!” Mario asked, starting to get freaked out.
“Oh, him…” Mallow responded. “I used Shocker before he could hurt you any further.”
“W-where is he-a now?” Mario asked, looking around the ground.
“He ran off…” Mallow said glumly. “I’m sorry.”
“Oh, it’s al right, Mallow,” Mario spoke, putting a hand on Mallow’s shoulder. “If you didn’t come I would’ve been dead for sure!”
“Wait… why are you-a here anyways? And where are the others?” Mario asked, just realizing the others were missing too.
“They’re fine,” Mallow said and smiled. “They went to get help when I saved you.”
“And I came here for-” Mallow’s sentence was cut short when a razor sharp spear was thrown at air-cutting speed directly at Mario.
Mario quickly sidestepped the airborne projectile and dodged it.
Then they saw Luigi. In his hands was one of the Toad guards. “Please, sir, put me down!” the Toad guard begged. In frustration because of his miss, Luigi threw the guard off a bridge and the guard screamed until he hit the black night water.
“He’s back!” Mallow exclaimed.
“Persistent, aren’t we?” Mario said, gritting his teeth.
“RAAAH!” Luigi growled as he jump-kicked Mario straight across the face.
Mario got back to his feet and wiped the blood from his mouth. Mario looked up at Luigi with a glare that was bone chilling.
Luigi started to skid across the ground to stop his momentum when Mario punched him square in the nose. Luigi started to retaliate but Mario was just too fast and uppercut him across the chin. Luigi fell back when Mario put his two hands together like a hammer and slammed it down into Luigi’s stomach.
“Uagghh!” Luigi moaned as the wind was knocked from his lungs. But before Mario could land another hit on him Luigi mule-kicked Mario off of him and sent him soaring through the air. Luigi picked up the spear and lit it with a green flame. “You’re finished!” Luigi hissed. “NOW DIE!”
But before Luigi could hurl the spear a powerful force hit him in the back at breakneck speed. Luigi was sent flying into a nearby lamp post and was knocked unconscious.
“YOSHI!” Mallow exclaimed in relief.
“We back,” Yoshi said. “But where Mario?”
“Right-a here,” Mario stated and then started limping his way back to his friends.
“Where are the others?” Mallow inquired.
“They right behind me,” Yoshi replied.
“Master Mario, you’re okay!” Toadsworth said with glee.
“I’ve been better,” Mario replied.
“Well at least you’re okay,” Peach said optimistically. “We were going to get help but we saw Luigi coming back so we decided to return and help.”
“It’s a good thing you did or I would’ve been shish kabob,” Mario said, thinking back to the flaming spear. “Wait, where’s Toad?”
“Toad… He, umm, was chasing some crazy mouse because she stole all of his coffee shavings…” Peach responded.
“He cares about COFFEE SHAVINGS more than he does me?!” Mario asked irritably.
“You got that right!” Toad shouted as he ran past, chasing after Ms. Mowz in the moonlight.
“Well that was awkward…” Mallow said, looking at the running Mushroomer in the distance.
“Oh!” Mario said, remembering the question he was going to ask Mallow. “Hey Mallow, why are you-a here anyways?”
“Well Cirrus, the guard captain, betrayed Nimbus Land and so did all of the soldiers and guards. My parents are already captured and I’m sure there’s absolute chaos in town right now. My guardian, Umbra, found me and we managed to escape. He stayed behind and I had to come down here… I just hope Umbra’s all right…” Mallow responded with some mist coming to his eyes.
“That’s horrible!” Peach said gasping.
“Don’t worry, Mallow, everything will work out,” Mario said sympathetically.
“Why would your own captain betray your kingdom?” Peach asked disgustedly.
“Umbra said he was under the influence of Deathbringer or something like that…” Mallow responded, recalling the story Umbra told him.
“Deathbringer?!” Mario asked in surprise. “T-that’s-a what Luigi was raving about.”
“Then the same thing has happened to both of our friends…” Mallow responded, nodding.
“Wait, do you-a know anything else about Deathbringer?” Mario eagerly asked.
“I know that it most easily affects
the greedy and evil…”
Chapter 4: The Covert Cove
“Got any threes?” Morton asked Ludwig in the confines of their dungeon cells.
“Go fish,” Ludwig replied with boredom.
“I KNOW YOU CHEAT!” Morton spazzed. “I JUST DON’T KNOW HOW YOU DO IT!”
“How about I tell you my secret…” Ludwig said.
“ALL RIGHT!” Morton yelped with glee.
“My secret is that…YOU KEEP ASKING ME FOR THE SAME FREAKING CARD!” Ludwig yelled irritably.
“Are you mocking me?” Morton threatened, brandishing his fist.
“Well even if I was, which I am, how would you possibly reach me in a different jail cell?” Ludwig asked with a mocking grin.
“Hey ladies, keep it down over there!” Roy yelled, shaking his fist. “I’m trying my best to finally count to three and I have a feeling this just may be the day!”
“Can’t we all just get along?” Iggy asked, trying to keep the peace.
“In King Dad’s dreams we can…” Lemmy said drearily.
“Hey, you can’t blame me for trying,” Iggy responded to the negative comment.
“Yeah I can,” Lemmy replied
“What’s Wendy doing?” Larry thought aloud.
About five minutes later the bars in Wendy’s jail cell broke apart. “Ha!” Wendy scoffed. “And they said a nail filer is only good for filing nails!”
“You broke out with a nail filer?” Lemmy asked.
“Yeah!” Wendy replied.
“Get me out then!” Larry pleaded.
“Why?” Wendy asked with an amused face.
“Because you’re the best sister ever…” Larry responded, hoping that would work.
“Don’t lie!” Wendy scolded.
“No, really…” Larry persisted.
“Give me something and I’ll let you out,” Wendy said with a heinous smile.
“But I don’t have anything…” Larry replied.
“Well that’s tough!” Wendy said, crossing her arms.
“Fine, here’s one of my Piranha Plants,” Larry said, reluctantly handing over one of his beloved plants.
“Anyone else?” Wendy asked to see if she could accumulate more possessions.
“I’ll give you a pair of my sunglasses,” Roy said, taking off his own pair.
“AHHHH!” all the Koopalings screamed in horror.
“Put those things back on, there are children present!” Morton screamed.
“Hey Roy, why don’t you, umm… give me an I.O.U,” Wendy suggested.
“Will do!” Roy replied as he put his sunglasses back on.
“There are just some things that the world just isn’t meant to see…” Iggy proclaimed.
“I second that statement,” Larry said.
“Ditto,” Lemmy replied, looking at the now covered eyes of Roy.
“Well, anyone else want out?” Wendy asked.
“You can have a Koopaling vote,” Lemmy offered.
“All right!” Wendy cheered.
“I have some koopabits,” Iggy said, handing a bag full of the Koopa currency over to Wendy.
“Well… It’s just barely enough to convince me,” Wendy said, looking at the amount of money she was given.
“Okay Ludwig, you’re the last person that would give me something, so do you want me to get you out?” Wendy asked.
“WAIT, WHAT ABOUT ME?” Morton wailed.
“I said person, not doofus,” Wendy sneered.
“Oh, that’s right…” Morton replied.
“Vell…” Ludwig said. “I have the knowledge of a secret passage…”
“My lord, are we ready to depart on our investigation?” Kamek asked impatiently.
“Shh! Let me finish my soaps!” Bowser growled.
“But sir…” Kamek spoke.
“LUCY! DON’T GO IN THERE!” Bowser said in a girly scream.
Kamek sighed. “There’s just no point…”
At that very moment the purple-robed Magikoopa known as Kammy Koopa walked in.
“Kammy!” Kamek exclaimed. “Maybe you can convince Lord Bowser to get on with the investigation already.”
“LUCY! DON’T GO IN THERE!” Bowser and Kammy screamed in unison.
“It’s hopeless…” Kamek sighed.
“SHHH!” Bowser and Kammy scolded.
“Woah…” Wendy gasped. “When did you discover it?”
“Vell I vas bored. That is ven I started pulling out rocks and then I happened upon this one. It wouldn’t budge so I pulled harder and vell…it opened up… However, I never saw where it leads...” Ludwig concluded.
“I WANNA GO!” Morton yelled at the top of his lungs.
“Shut up!” Iggy hissed. “Dad’ll here us!”
“Gwa ha ha ha! Too late for that, Iggy!” Bowser responded angrily.
“Now interrupting me is one thing… BUT WHEN I’M WATCHING MY SOAPS I EXPECT ABSOLUTE SILENCE!” Bowser bellowed monstrously.
“But…” Lemmy protested.
“SILENCE!” Bowser hollered. “Now I’m going to call guards in here and they will make sure you stay in your cells!” And with the snap of his fingers two Koopatrols came dashing in. “Keep an eye on them!”
“Yes sir!” the two Koopatrols replied. With those words said, Bowser went back upstairs.
“And I thought you thought I watched trash TV,” Morton said.
“Morton, you watch a blank screen…” Lemmy replied.
About ten minutes later, Larry was found grasping something with one arm behind his back.
“What do you have there?” a Koopatrol asked curiously.
About ten minutes later the guards ran back upstairs at top speed.
“Wow…that was creepy…” Wendy said and shivered.
“Hey, the Plitish Death Trap would make anyone run away,” Larry responded.
“I’ll never look at a plant the same way…” Morton said with his mouth wide open.
“Good work,” Wendy complimented Larry. “Now let’s see where that secret passage goes!”
“All right, Kamek, I’m ready to go,” Bowser spoke readying his cleverly spelled Klown Kopter.
“Why do we have to go when MY show’s on?!” Kamek whined.
“Because you’re a short and insignificant waste of space and worrying about your needs is not what makes the world go ‘round, Kamek…” Bowser paused. “Because MY needs are what make the world go ‘round.”
“Well, Kammy’s short too…” Kamek persisted.
“Yeah but she’s a short and insignificant USE of space…” Bowser lectured with his intelligent free logic.
“My lord,” Kammy interrupted. “Everything is ready to go!”
“Very good Kammy, we depart now!” Bowser replied with growing excitement about his possible new evil plot.
“My lord…” Kamek uttered in a pathetic sort of voice.
“What now?” Bowser asked with an annoyed look in his eyes.
“Well… since you roasted my hand into a wafflish state my hand is unable to support me on my broomstick and I’m too old to balance with just one hand… so could I get a ride in your Klown Kopter?” Kamek pleaded.
“Only I get to ride in the incorrectly, but cleverly spelled Klown Kopter.” Bowser replied.
“THEN WHAT DO YOU PROPOSE I DO?” Kamek yelled spastically.
“Duct tape solves all problems…” Bowser said, nodding his head.
“Excuse me?” Kamek asked suspiciously.
“Ugh… How far does this damp tunnel go?” Wendy groaned.
“I can see a light dead ahead!” Iggy declared.
“Eww, this passage reeks like twenty-year-old moldy cheese…” Lemmy complained.
“Heh, those are my feet!” Roy chuckled.
“That’s revolting!” Wendy cried.
“Your bow’s revolting!” Roy retaliated.
“Enough bickering!” Ludwig growled. “We’re at the end!”
The Koopalings wandered to the end of the light, and stopped dead in their tracks, awestruck. The Koopalings had wandered into a commodious cove. It was knee deep in pure azure water. In the corner there was a large rock that came from the surface of the water. The walls were a bit slimy and covered in moss, and there was a fissure overhead that leaked a ray of sunlight. This made the place look wondrous, but the most noticeable thing in the room was a large, mysterious mirror.
“I’ve never seen anything like it…” Wendy spoke.
“What I’m curious about is why anyone would build a secret passage leading to a random cove…” Ludwig spoke, deep in thought.
“Maybe they just wanted to hang out,” Larry replied.
“Maybe… but I think there’s some kind of significance to the place,” Ludwig said, touching the moss-covered walls.
“Hey guys!” Roy yelled.
“What?” Ludwig asked, knowing it was going to be something stupid.
“I don’t have to stand anymore and burn off my precious blubber!” Roy said. Roy then sat down on the large rock that came up out of the surface of the water. “Dis rocks!” Roy exclaimed. “Hey, what the?” Roy asked as his rock sank into the depths of the sand. At that very moment a great tremor shook the ground and a large carving of the Koopa Family Crest seemed to magically carve itself in the algae.
“My lord…” Kamek stammered. “When you mentioned duct tape I didn’t know you intended to tape my hands to the broomstick…”
“Hey, duct tape solves all problems, am I right?” Bowser asked, looking back at the broom-bound Kamek.
“How about world hunger?” Kamek said sarcastically.
“THEY’RE WORKING ON IT! NEVER DOUBT THE AWESOME POWER OF DUCT TAPE!” Bowser scolded. “Like they say, it’s not broken, it just lacks duct tape!”
“No, not duck tape, DUCT tape, silly!” Bowser said to a nearby duck.
“What I lack is a good master…” Kamek muttered.
“Don’t make me get the waffle iron out there!” Bowser threatened.
“I’m sorry! I’m sorry!” Kamek cried.
“Don’t say sorry to me, say it to the awesome power of duct tape!” Bowser said, holding out a roll of it.
“What? NEVER!” Kamek yelled.
“Fine, but it looks like we’re gonna have a hand that won’t hold its wand…” Bowser threatened.
“I can’t believe I’m actually doing this…” Kamek said with a frown. “I-I’m sorry…” Kamek said with embarrassment.
“Well it doesn’t forgive you, so now you must be punished,” Bowser said briefly. “I’ll just get out the waffle iron and…”
“ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!” Kamek screamed.
Kamek was then burnt to a crisp. “Geez, calm down, spaz!” Bowser chortled.
“Thanks, I needed that!” Kamek said, grinding his teeth ferociously.
“Yeah, you did,” Bowser said, laughing.
Before Kamek could yell his hat off, Kammy interrupted.
“My lord, we’re approaching Star Hill Summit!” Kammy said, pointing in the distance.
“Excellent, prepare for landing!” Bowser ordered.