Chapter 5 Act 1: Memories of Love
Count Bleck sat alone in his bedroom. More balls of paper littered his floor, each one featuring a poem written about Timpani, and each one was rejected by the Count. Count Bleck was sitting on the edge of his bed with his head in his white-gloved hands, frustration streaked across his face.
Timpani… she was gone from all worlds, the Count was sure of it. Without Timpani… the Count had no reason to hold himself back. A dark claw seemed to close in around the Count’s mind, trying to crush that last shred of light and love from it. Blackness… darkness… fear… Bleck was becoming these things… And soon… nothing could pull him back from what he had done. He had killed his father, destroyed his homeland, created a new world, and hired minions to help him destroy all worlds… Darkness had taken the once gentle Blumiere and seduced him into a dark slumber that now was Count Bleck.
Count Bleck slowly stood and walked to his desk, pen in hand, and wrote onto a piece of paper the following.
Light, a powerful
Darkness, a wondrous friend
But all things shall soon end.
A book of dark, a man of light,
Destroyed by might,
Tempted by thee.
Memories cannot be forgotten,
Nor may sins be forgiven,
For such as my fate.
I am a fool,
A fool of the dark,
But you… you stole my heart.
I searched for you then,
I yearn for you now,
But you are’t gone,
But thou hast not broken,
Thy love for me?
I love thee still,
But he was killed,
All that remains is a shell to tell,
The story of the darkness to come,
Timpani… I love thee.
The Count looked over these words and, screaming in frustration, took the pen and paper and threw them at the door. At this instant the door opened and Nastasia was struck by both pen and paper.
“OH!” Nastasia yelped as the pen struck her forehead, leaving a small black ink mark. Count Bleck saw this and quickly stood, ran over to his bed, and slammed down a small picture onto the counter, so Nastasia wouldn’t see it. Nastasia, rubbing the mark, walked up to the Count.
“… Um… Count?” Nastasia asked in a concerned voice, that of a friend.
“What?!” bellowed Count Bleck in a sharp tone.
“… Um… Are you ok? I heard you scream and thought… something might be wrong… ”
Count Bleck hid his face from her, looking out the small round window in his room. The white light from the moon cast a crescent across his face, showing a small tear flowing down his right cheek. Nastasia saw this, and almost gasped.
“… I am fine… Please… leave me… muttered Count Bleck… ”
Nastasia remained in the room, Count Bleck didn’t turn around. Nastasia turned and lifted the picture frame. Quickly Count Bleck slammed his hand down on hers and slapped the picture out of her hand. It went skidding across the floor as Nastasia looked at the Count in fear.
“I SAID LEAVE ME! NOW!” bellowed Count Bleck, not far from her face. Nastasia tensed up and backed away. Quickly Nastasia made her way to the door, ran out, and slammed it behind her. Count Bleck slumped to the floor with shock on his face.
“No… What’s wrong with me?.... Nastasia has been so kind… Why did I just… Why can’t I?... just… WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?!” Count Bleck cried to himself as he fell into a heap on the floor.
Nastasia stood outside the door, listening.
“… I must do it… I must read the book… I must end this all soon… This darkness… it’s taking hold of me… I… I can’t let it win… I must find her… Timpani… I know somewhere… she’s out there… I must find her!”
Nastasia sighed and walked toward her room, three doors down on the right side of the hall. As she did she noticed Dimentio was standing at the end of the hall looking out the window. Nastasia paid him no mind as she walked on, but Dimentio chuckled and spoke.
“It seems our dear Count is having a small problem,” Dimentio said with a smirk.
“… He is fine,” Nastasia said.
Dimentio chuckled again. “So you say… and yet still he weeps to himself, like a child whose candy was stolen. Why do you not go and help him? Why do you not ask his help? He is troubled by what he has done. Go… help him… protect his last strand of pure mind,” Dimentio said in an almost poetic tone.
Nastasia smiled at him. “… Dimentio.”
“Yes, Ms. Nastasia?”
“… Go away… ” Nastasia said in a firm tone.
With that, Dimentio was away, but not before saying one last thing. “… Life is but what is chosen. He has chosen darkness, now you must choose, Madame. Are you in? Or out?”
Nastasia slowly walked into her room and shut the door. Dimentio is right… Something troubles the Count… his past? What he did to that woman in the Underwhere? Or is it… what he is trying to do that troubles him?
Nastasia heard a loud moaning cry of sorrow emit from the Count’s room.
Inside his room, Count Bleck was looking at a picture he had painted of Timpani. He was running a gloved hand down his painting as he thought of Timpani.
beautiful… so pure… so loving… so kind… Please… Forgive me, my dear… Please
do not hate me for what I have become…
Chapter 5 Act 2: Strength of a General
Nastasia, Dimentio, Mimi, and Count Bleck all stood in a large “Planning Room” awaiting the instructions that the Count would read from the Dark Prognosticus. Count Bleck cleared his throat, and everyone looked his way.
“... Intelligence, Darkness, Imposter, you three are these things,” Count Bleck said to his minions. “But there is one more… one more that is mentioned in the Dark Prognosticus. Power… Dim of mind, but great in power. We need one more member, a strong, powerful, and dimwitted one,” Count Bleck said with a chuckle.
Nastasia looked at Mimi and Dimentio, who stood on the other side of the room, as she stood next to the Count. Dimentio had an inquisitive look on his face; Mimi had the same happy smile she always had. Count Bleck looked over a few more lines, which he didn’t read, and shut the book. Nastasia adjusted her glasses and looked at the Count. “So… um, Count?”
Count Bleck looked off toward the others with a confident look. “Yes?” Count Bleck asked slowly, pointing his monocled gaze at Nastasia.
“… So does the Prognosticus say where we find this next member?”
Count Bleck smiled slightly and opened the book again. “… A place where fame is won, not by intelligence or words, but by strength and speed… ” Count Bleck read from the book.
Mimi looked confused. “Why can’t the book just tell us where the next member is, and who he is?!”
Dimentio shook his head. “The book can see the future, yes, but it cannot see every detail, only the important ones.”
Count Bleck chuckled. “Good, Dimentio, it seems you know some of the book. But let us go. Nastasia!”
Nastasia stepped forward. “Yes, Count?”
“… I am not going to travel with you… Take Mimi and Dimentio… and find this next member… ” Count Bleck said in an almost sad tone.
Nastasia looked stunned. “B-But Count! How will we know if we got the right man?!”
Count Bleck gave Nastasia a look… it was strange… it looked almost like a gaze a father would give his daughter when he was proud of her. “… You will know, Nastasia… You will know… ” With that Count Bleck left the room, by flipping again.
Dimentio yawned and Mimi adjusted her dress. Both of them looked… bored. “Well, Nastasia, where are we going?”
Nastasia thought for a moment… then it hit her! “I know a place where we just might find our new recruit… ” With that Nastasia, Mimi, and Dimentio were gone.
Silence filled the dimly lit halls of Castle Bleck. Count Bleck sat in a large room much like his father’s throne room. On the north wall was a painting of his father, next to it was a painting of his mother, below that was a painting of himself as Blumiere. Count Bleck sighed, the passage of air slowly turning into a growling scream. He grabbed the painting of himself and threw it into a large fireplace that billowed forth white flame. Count Bleck laughed madly as he placed a new painting of himself… as Count Bleck.
“… May all stare
into the sky and despair… for the end of all worlds is soon to be at hand…
Bleh… heh heh BLECK!”
Fields of green billowed from gusts of wind that blew down across the large valley encased by endless seas of blue mountains on all sides. In the center of the valley was a city, large and beautiful… But on the northern mountains sat cities of dirt and foul people.
Nastasia, Mimi, and Dimentio all flipped into the world underneath a large tree. Nastasia and Mimi gasped and Dimentio merely looked stunned. All around them lay bodies of people and different creatures. All sorts of creatures that Nastasia had seen before lay around them. Squigs, they were called, small, square, pink figures that spat forth stones. They lay all around, accompanied by bodies of people as well.
One man stood alone, wearing red and black, in the center of the debris from what seemed to be a battle. Nastasia and Dimentio approached him, while Mimi sat under the tree with a fearful look. “… Hello… ” Nastasia said to the figure.
The figure turned, he had red hair and a scruffy red beard. He was large, built quite massively, and looked a little… stupid. “Eh who are ye?” asked the figure in a powerful Scottish accent.
“I’m Nastasia… and um… this is Dimentio,” Nastasia said in a happy voice.
“And the girl over there is Mimi,” Dimentio finished with a smirk.
“Me name’s, O’Chunks… General O’Chunks… ” said the Scottish man.
Nastasia smiled. “General… what happened here?”
O’Chunks turned away from Nastasia and wore a look of disbelief as well as sorrow. “Tis was me turn at Generaling de forces… I tis in bad shape… all me men is… ”
“How did this happen? You have so many men… um… Couldn’t you have won?” Nastasia asked, noticing that Mimi had returned to the group.
“… No… I led te troops, thousands of em, across de lines o the enemy… But da advisors… de sold me out… De told the enemy… and we was beaten… ”
Nastasia looked around, shocked to see so many had fallen. Then she noticed that all the troops, both good and bad, had fallen. “But it looks like a draw to me,” Nastasia said.
“… BAH! Dere be no such a ting as draw! I ever win! Or me lose! And me lost!”
Nastasia opened her mouth to speak, when everyone heard a voice interrupt them.
“… You wish to strike back at them, don’t you, General? You want to show them the pain they caused you. You want to take the battle to their door. You want to show just how strong you are! You want to make the advisor pay for what he did, causing so many to Game Over so soon in life.”
Everyone spun around to see Count Bleck standing behind them. Mimi and Nastasia curtsied and Dimentio bowed. “Hail Count Bleck!” they all said in unison.
O’Chunks backed away a step. “Ey! Who are ye?!” O’Chunks yelled to the Count.
Count Bleck tipped his hat and bowed. “My name is Count Bleck, Monsieur O’Chunks, and you seem to be in a little bit of trouble. I’m sure you wish you could have stopped this from happening.”
O’Chunks looked confident as he glared at the Count. “Now listen ‘ere! Dem tings ye said about te getting back at de Advisor! What ye be doing, readin’ me thoughts?!”
Count Bleck chuckled. “I can see the anger that has swelled up inside you… I can see how much you hate that Advisor… I can see how much you cared for your men. I, we, have the power to destroy worlds! Let alone a simple Advisor! We wish to ask your services, Monsieur O’Chunks. We have a plan for a perfect world, of peace and everlasting happiness, but we need someone dedicated and strong like you to help… ”
O’Chunks looked away from the Count as he spoke. “… So ye sayin… dat if me joins ye… me could do somtin about all me men dat had dere Game Overs.”
“Look at it this way, you have lost your sense of pride. The Advisor took away your men, he took away your power! But… if you join us… not only can you stop the Advisor from doing it again… but think of all the people you could help by creating a perfect world! A WORLD WITHOUT WAR!” Count Bleck yelled excitedly.
O’Chunks thought it over for a moment. Nastasia and Dimentio both looked at the Count, while Mimi backed away. Count Bleck’s smile began to fade. Then as O’Chunks spoke… the smile returned.
“… If what ye say be ture… den… sign me up, Count!” O’Chunks said, putting his hand out to be shook. Count Bleck took it, with one hand on his hat and a dark smile across his face.
“Pleased to have you aboard… O’Chunks… Heheh… hehe… ”