It was a sunny, beautiful afternoon in the Mushroom Kingdom. Mario was resting on his bed. Nothing much had happened in a while since he and Luigi (who was in Sarasaland trying to stop a surprise attack by Wart, who somehow broke out of Peach's dungeon) assisted Larry and Lemmy Koopa in destroying Fawful. However, he had just thwarted Roy Koopa's monthly attack, and that's why he was resting. What a beautiful day, he thought. Hmm… I wonder how Luigi's doing… I wish I knew how Wart got out…
Suddenly, he heard a crash from outside. Mario shot up from his bed and ran to the front door. He busted the door open and looked around. "Hello?!" he yelled. "Is anyone there?"
Then he saw something moving in a nearby tree. Mario slowly walked over to it. He stared up. It moved again. What is that…? Mario thought. Suddenly, a figure fell from the tree and landed on the ground next to him. It was a Koopa, with a light blue shell. Attached to his shell was a pair or wings, one of which seemed like it was crushed. The Paratroopa also was wearing a helmet and goggles, and had a bag full of mail over his arm. "Parakarry?!" Mario said.
"Ugh…" muttered Parakarry. "Hey… Mario…"
"Are you okay?"
"I think so… I just hit a tree, that's all… Serves me right for not watching where I'm going…" Parakarry slowly got to his feet. He suddenly felt a sharp pain in his left wing. "OW!!!" he yelled. "What happened to my wing!"!
"Um… You landed on it…" said Mario. Parakarry winced.
"Uh…" he started. "Could you take me to the nearest doctor?"
Mario ran back into the house. Parakarry stared with a puzzled look on his face. Ten seconds later, Mario came back out, dressed in a doctor's uniform. "Dr. Mario, at your service!" he said. Parakarry just stared.
Parakarry was lying in Mario's bed on his belly. Dr. Mario was checking out his wing. After inspecting the wing, Mario had some bad news.
"Parakarry," he said, "I'm sorry to say that you sprained your wing."
"WHAT?!" cried Parakarry. "Great! NOW how am I gonna deliver all this mail?!"
"Well… you could walk…"
"No way! I have a very long paper route! That's why I fly! ...Uh oh! My boss! What's he gonna say about this?! What'll he… DO?!"
Mario could see that Parakarry was a bit worried. His boss (the Postmaster) was a bit of a serious guy, and there was a good chance that Parakarry could get fired for his injury. This job was, after all, all Parakarry had, and he could not afford to lose it. Mario carefully wrapped Parakarry's wing in a cast. Parakarry stood up. "Thank's Mario," he said. "But I still don't know how I'm gonna explain this to my boss…"
"Just tell him that you broke your wing and won't be able to work for a few weeks… I'm sure he'll understand."
Well, Parakarry thought, I’m not…
Afterwards, Parakarry walked off to try to find a warp pipe to Toad Town. Parakarry suddenly stopped. He went back to Mario's front door and knocked. Mario answered. "Hey," said Parakarry, "I almost forgot… here…" Parakarry handed Mario a letter. Mario opened it up and read it. It read,
Dear Toilet Head,
I have kidnapped your idiot brother! If you want to see him again, you'd better hurry! WAHAHAHAHAHA *CLUMPCLUMPCLUMP*
The letter wasn't signed. Mario jumped. "Parakarry! Come here!" he yelled. Parakarry walked over to him.
"Look at this!"
Parakarry read the letter. After reading it, he gazed at Mario. "Mario…" he said, "your brother needs you big time…"
"I know! But who's behind all this?!"
"… I guess so… I'm gonna pay my old archrival a visit… but just to make sure he doesn't try anything funny…" Mario ran inside again. Parakarry had his confused look again. Mario ran back out, holding a weapon he hadn't used in a long time. "I'll have THIS ready!" Mario held the weapon up in front of Parakarry, who stared down at it. The weapon was a Super Scope, the very same one he used during his adventures in the Jewelry Kingdom with Yoshi.
"Wow…" said Parakarry.
"Yep!" said Mario. "This thing served Yoshi and I well… Sorry, I’ve got to go! I'M COMING, LUIGI!!!" Mario started to run off. Suddenly, Parakarry got an idea.
"Mario! Wait!" he called. Mario stopped and looked back. "I could help you!" said Parakarry.
Mario's eyes widened. "Are you sure?" he said. "Your wing is-"
"I can be careful!!!" snapped Parakarry.
"… Oh… Okie dokie…" said Mario. He started off. Parakarry followed, smiling slightly. He wanted to help because he felt Mario could probably use a little assistance. He also felt the need for some adventure. But this was also a great opportunity for him to avoid facing his boss. Mario, however, didn't realize this. He was more focused on Luigi than anything.
Mario and Parakarry emerged from a pipe. They were in Dark Land. Parakarry looked all around him. He had never seen this part of the Mushroom World. He shivered. The land had a horrifying look to it (as far as he was concerned). The ground was all nothing but rock and dirt, with absolutely no grass to be seen. Lava pits were scattered everywhere. Smoke billowed from nearby volcanoes, creating huge clouds of smoke that covered the sky, which was already very cloudy. Adding to that, it was evening, making the land seem a lot more ominous.
Mario looked around. "Hmm…” he thought out loud. "I think Bowser's Castle is… this way…" Mario wasn't completely sure, as he hadn't been here in a while. Nevertheless, he tried to remember the best he could.
Several hours passed. Mario and Parakarry were still making their way across the treacherous terrain. Parakarry got more and more nervous with every step he took. As much as Dark Land's dangerous terrain scared him, he was still happy to be away from his stern boss. Mario's mind was still focused on Luigi. Was he okay? What wind of things could Bowser be doing to him? If Bowser was the kidnapper, that is…
Suddenly, he noticed a huge, dark shape in the distance. Parakarry also saw it. Mario knew what the shape was. He walked towards it. Parakarry followed. As they got closer, they could both see it clearly. It was Bowser's Castle. Mario had his Super Scope ready just in case. As they neared the castle’s drawbridge, the guards in front of the castle (two Koopatrols) spotted them. "HALT!!!" yelled one. They both rushed towards Mario and Parakarry.
"Um… Mario?" began Parakarry.
"Don't worry. I can handle these two," said Mario.
As the Koopatrols were getting closer to them, Mario blasted them with the Super Scope, knocking them both out.
"Woah…" said Parakarry. "That looked easy…"
Mario nodded. They walked over the drawbridge and snuck into the castle. They slowly crept through the dark hallways. Parakarry was still very nervous. "Mario…" he whispered, "are you sure Bowser kidnapped Luigi? ... I mean… when I said that maybe he did, I was only guessing…"
"To be honest," said Mario, "I'm not completely sure… but this would be the first place I'd look…" Suddenly they spotted two Koopas coming towards them. They both had multicolored Mohawk hairdos. One wore glasses. The other was shorter. Mario and Parakarry ducked behind a statue as Lemmy and Iggy walked by.
"Do you think Dad's still upset about that Yoshi chase last week?" asked Iggy.
"Dunno," said Lemmy. "He could be… but I don't feel like finding out right now…"
Mario and Parakarry watched them go by. Suddenly, Mario remembered something. "Uh oh," he said.
"W-w-what?" said Parakarry. "What is it?"
"I forgot… Luigi's in Sarasaland trying to stop an attack by Wart… so Bowser has nothing to do with this…"
"WHAT?!" screamed Parakarry. "YOU MEAN WE CAME ALL THIS WAY FOR NOTHING?!"
Unfortunately, Parakarry's yelling caught Lemmy and Iggy's attention. They whipped around and spotted Mario and Parakarry behind the statue.
"HUH?!" said Lemmy. "WHAT ARE THEY DOING HERE?!"
Mario glared at Parakarry, who slapped his beak. "Me and my big mouth…" he muttered.
Iggy took out his wand, while Lemmy drew his Freeze Gun. Mario aimed the Super Scope at them. Parakarry had no weapons of his own, but stood next to Mario anyway.
"Well well well," said Iggy. "Look what we got here. A pesky plumber and a pathetic Paratroopa." Parakarry glared at Iggy.
"Pathetic?!" he burst out. "I'll show you!!!"
"Well see about that," said Lemmy. "Oh… I see you brought the Super Scope… Looks like we're gonna have ourselves a little shootout. Hehehe!"
"Bring it!" said Mario.
Lemmy suddenly blasted at them with the Freeze Gun. Mario and Parakarry dodged, the spots where they were standing getting frozen solid. Iggy blasted with his wand. Parakarry retreated into his shells and began sliding around, trying to hit the Koopalings, while Mario fired the Super Scope. The Koopalings also retreated into their shells to avoid Mario's shots. Mario kept shooting. Iggy popped back out and began jumping around wildly, blasting his wand. Parakarry and Lemmy were slamming into each other with their shells. This was irritating Parakarry's wing a little, but he had to take it. Lemmy popped out again and shot at Parakarry, who was still in his shell. Parakarry dodged. Mario and Iggy exchanged shots from the wand and Super Scope. They both dodged each other's shots. Mario kept shooting until he realized that Parakarry was unarmed. All he had was his shell, and his injured wing limited his moves. This gave Mario an idea.
"Parakarry! Catch!" he called. Parakarry popped out. Mario tossed the Super Scope to him. Parakarry caught it. Though he hadn't used one of these before, he had to try. He shot at Lemmy. Lemmy dodged. Nevertheless, Parakarry found this easy enough for him. He continued shooting. Mario jumped and hit Iggy in the head while Iggy was landing from another jump. Iggy staggered. Mario then took out a Fire Flower (he conveniently had in his pocket) and turned into Fiery Mario. Then he threw fireballs at Iggy, who was hit by a few. Iggy felt a little dizzy, but kept blasting at him with his wand. Parakarry was still shooting at Lemmy. He kept shooting and shooting, jumping to avoid Lemmy's shots. Eventually, he finally shot Lemmy. Lemmy staggered. Parakarry blasted him again, and Lemmy fell over, unconscious. Mario threw fireball after fireball at Iggy, who eventually fell unconscious too (as well as burned).
"Phew! We got 'em!" said Parakarry.
"Yep!" said Mario. "Hmm… You know what, why don't you take control of the Super Scope until we save Luigi? It'll keep you armed since you have a bad wing."
"Come on! Let's go! I think I hear voices from down the hall!"
Indeed there were voices down the hall. Mario and Parakarry ran off. After a few more minutes, they were nearing the front door when-
"Uh oh!" said Parakarry.
"Mamamia!" said Mario. They looked over, and there was the King of the Koopas himself, walking towards them!
"Well, look who's crawled out of the pipe!" Bowser mused.
"Listen Bowser!" said Mario. "We don't want any trouble!"
"Well you're getting it whether you like it or not! Prepare to FIGHT!!! BWHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!"
"Looks like it's time to fight fire with fire!" said Mario.
Bowser spat fireballs at them, while Mario returned fire. Parakarry started shooting at Bowser. Although they were direct hits, Bowser seemed unaffected by them, which told Parakarry that he would have to shoot way more than he did with Lemmy. Mario jumped around, throwing fireballs while avoiding Bowser's. Bowser suddenly jumped and stomped the floor, causing a mini-quake. Mario saw it coming, and jumped right when Bowser did. Parakarry was stunned, however. After a few seconds, he recovered just as Bowser spat a fireball at him. Parakarry was hit. He fell back, the Super Scope flying out of his paws. Parakarry winced, as the fireball had irritated his wing. He slowly tried to reach for the Super Scope…
Mario was pelting Bowser with fireballs. Bowser was burned, but still fought back. Mario jumped at Bowser, who suddenly swatted him back like a fly. Mario flew backwards into a wall, losing his fire power. Mario rubbed his head. Bowser walked up to him. "Sorry it has to end like this…" said Bowser. "What am I saying?! No I'm not! BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!"
Bowser inhaled. He was about to blow a huge fireball at Mario! Parakarry saw this, and finally grabbed the Super Scope. "Eat scope!!!" he yelled. Bowser whipped around.
"Eat scope?!" he said, raising a brow.
"… That didn't come out right… Oh well."
Parakarry took aim. Suddenly, the front door burst open. Nine Dry Bones zombies ran in towards Mario. They threw bones toward him and Bowser. Mario dodged, while Bowser was hit square in the face. Bowser fell back, roaring in pain. The Dry Bones threw more bones at Mario, who dodged them. Parakarry blasted the Dry Bones with the Super Scope. They all fell into pieces. Seconds later, they put themselves back together. "WHAT?!" cried Parakarry. Suddenly, they started shooting lasers from their eyes at Mario!
"WOAH!!!" said Mario. "I didn't know they could do that!"
"They… can't… Well… at least… mine don't," moaned Bowser, his hands still covering his face where the bone hit him.
Mario continued dodging the laser shots. Parakarry shot the Dry Bones again. They fell apart again.
"Let's go before they try anything else!" said Parakarry.
Mario nodded. They ran off, moments before the Dry Bones reassembled again. They couldn't see Mario or Parakarry, but ran off in the exact route that they took, somehow knowing where to go. Bowser was left lying on the floor with a bad headache. Two Goomba guards ran up to Bowser. "King Koopa!" said one. "What was all that commotion!?"
"Sorry… You were too late…" Bowser grumbled.
Mario and Parakarry were outside the castle. "Wow…" said Parakarry. "That was weird!"
"Well," said Mario, "let's focus on getting to Sarasaland. I have no idea who kidnapped Luigi, but I hope they haven't done anything to him."
"Ya think it was Wart?" asked Parakarry.
"No way!" said Mario. "Luigi could handle Wart easily. Wart is not an experienced fighter. No way he could've captured Luigi. It must have been someone who really hates Luigi… but who?"
Suddenly, the Dry Bones busted through the front door. Mario and Parakarry jumped.
"Woah!" said Mario. "How'd they know we were outside?!"
"Run now! Talk later!" said Parakarry. The Dry Bones charged at them, shooting at them with their laser eyes. Parakarry shot back at them. He managed to hit four of them, but missed the other five. They continued running. In the distance was a warp pipe. They ran up to it. Parakarry looked back and blasted the remaining Dry Bones into pieces. He and Mario then jumped into the pipe immediately.
Mario and Parakarry emerged from the pipe. They looked around. The ground was sandy. Again, there was no grass. They could see shadows of pyramids in the distance.
"Oh…" said Mario. "We're on Desert Hill."
"Mario," said Parakarry. "Did you notice how easily those Dry Bones knew where we were?"
"Oh yeah," Mario said.
"And did you notice that they were only shooting at you?"
"Well, if you ask me… they're after you!"
Mario thought about this. The Dry Bones were only shooting at him and didn't seem to pay any attention to Parakarry or Bowser. Bowser getting hit in the face looked a lot like it was accidental. Also, the Dry Bones had indeed somehow known that Mario had run outside the castle. Could this whole thing be a death trap for Mario?"
"I think you’re right…" said Mario.
"And you know what else?" said Parakarry. "Those Dry Bones were firing laser beams from their eyes, and Bowser said that his Dry Bones minions can't do that. Who are these zombies working for?"
Mario shrugged. "It's strange… Well… the only way to beat a Dry Bones is with a Cape… and I don't even have a Feather… I guess all we can do is jump on them and shoot them and break them apart, then get as far away from them as possible."
"… I'm guessing that means without a Cape, we have no way to beat them for keeps… Hang on… What about Starmen?
"… True… but they're hard to find, and they only last for a few seconds."
"Oh yeah… Enough talkin'… Let's try to find a way to Sarasaland before those Dry Bones find us… and hopefully we'll find a Cape Feather along the way… or a Starman."
They walked away Suddenly, Mario remembered something. In the letter he read, the kidnapper had clumped after the evil laugh. Mario he had never heard of anyone who spoke that way. Now he knew this was an unfamiliar kidnapper. Mario decided to keep the thought to himself for now.
They walked away. There were a lot of things they didn't know about this. Who kidnapped Luigi? How could Dry Bones have laser vision? How could Dry Bones immediately know where they were? Would they find a Cape Feather or a Starman? They would certainly see later on…